Gallo's diligent work pays off in hot stretch

September 18th, 2021

NEW YORK -- readily acknowledges that he is a streaky hitter, one who produces plenty of the three true outcomes -- home runs, walks and strikeouts. When the slugger gets hot, he can carry a team, which is exactly what the Yankees hope is happening.

Gallo homered twice in Friday’s victory over the Indians, giving him six big flies in his past six games with at least one at-bat. The 27-year-old has belted 37 homers this season, including 12 since joining the Yankees in late July. He exited Saturday's 11-3 loss to Cleveland in the fourth inning with neck tightness, popping out in the second in his lone at-bat, but is considered day to day.

“I’ve just been working with the hitting coaches here, looking at videos over the years,” Gallo said before Saturday's game. “When I was taking my best swings, I was a little bit more opened up with my stance, getting into that back leg a little more. Watching video from a few weeks ago, I was more flailing a little bit. I didn’t have as much strength.”

Six of Gallo’s past eight hits dating to Sept. 10 have left the yard, a span over which he has batted .348.

“This game is so much about being on time,” manager Aaron Boone said. “When you get your pitch or you get a mistake pitch that you’re hunting, you’ve got to take advantage of them. The pitchers are too good; they can exploit you too much. When you do get an opportunity, you’ve got to stick it, and that’s what he’s been doing here lately.”

Over his first 37 games with the Yanks, Gallo batted .133 (17-for-128) with six doubles, six homers and 13 RBIs, posting 31 walks and 64 strikeouts.

“Being a big guy, you can create a lot of power and torque from being in your legs, so that’s kind of what we did,” Gallo said. “Confidence-wise, I knew at some point I would get going and things would start going my way. It’s just how the game of baseball works. But credit to our hitting coaches; they definitely helped me a lot.”

Glove story
’s offensive production has seemed to jump since the Yankees restored his outfield duties, and Boone wonders if there is a link.

Since July 30, Stanton’s first game in the outfield since 2019, Stanton has slashed .306/.371/.588 with 13 homers and 33 RBIs in 44 games. He slashed .255/.352/.450 with 16 homers and 46 RBIs in 81 games before that date.

“We’re talking about a fearsome stud hitter here,” Boone said. “I’d like to think that if he was DHing every day, he still would be having this kind of this season. No question, it’s a fair question to ask if there’s a little bit of a correlation. I would have liked to have done it probably more or earlier in the year.”

Bombers bits
“was in an upbeat mood” on Saturday morning, according to Boone, one day after the rehabbing right-hander tossed two innings of live batting practice on the Yankee Stadium mound. The Yankees are discussing Severino’s next step.

Michael King will likely serve in a hybrid role through the remainder of the season, where he could be used for long relief or shorter stints.

This date in Yankees history
Sept. 18, 1956: Mickey Mantle hit his 50th home run of the season, an 11th-inning shot at Chicago’s Comiskey Park that lifted the Yanks to a 3-2 win over the White Sox.