The New York Yankees are the hottest team in baseball. They own the best record in the league at 21-8 with a run differential of 50. Both their batting and pitching lineups have been stellar to start this campaign. They rank in the top five on almost all of the team batting and pitching statistics. In this list, we take a look at their best positional players in terms of wins above replacement.
New York Yankees' Best Positional Players 2022
Pitcher: Nestor Cortes Jr., WAR: 1.2
Nestor Cortes Jr. has been the biggest revelation in the Yankees organization this season. He has a 1.41 ERA with 42 strikeouts through six starts, threw an immaculate inning (only the 106th in MLB history), and almost threw a no-hitter against the Texas Rangers. Gerrit Cole and Luis Severino have been more of the familiar names to casual fans when they hear about the Yankees' pitching crew, but it won't be long until they take notice of the young Cuban lefty hurler with a funky delivery.
Catcher: Jose Trevino, WAR: 0.3
Jose Trevino was just acquired by the Yankees via trade on April 2 from the Texas Rangers. They've had problems with defense in the catcher's position since club legend Jorge Posada left, but they might have just found a gem with Trevino. His offensive numbers are not eye-popping, but the 29-year-old has a dWAR of 0.4 compared to Kyle Higashioka's dWAR -0.1.
First baseman: Anthony Rizzo, WAR: 0.9
Once a dear and beloved member of the Chicago Cubs, Anthony Rizzo has now earned trust and is widely adored by the New York Yankees faithful. Rizzo is one of the biggest reasons for the Yankees' surge to the top spot in baseball this season.
"Anthony Rizzo was the Yankees best move." - @ G.T Darren Klein
Rizzo has nine homers and 22 RBIs on 24 base hits so far this season.
Second baseman: D.J. LeMahieu, WAR: 0.8
D.J. LeMahieu has been a steady hand in the Yankees' batting order for years now. He is batting .287/.361/.406 with six doubles on 27 base hits. He only trails Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton for the most base hits in the team. LeMahieu just edged out Gleyber Torres on this list mainly due to his offensive consistency. With the team's well-documented struggles over the past few years, LeMahieu should be instrumental down the stretch.
Shortstop: Isiah Kiner-Falefa, WAR: 0.8
Isiah Kiner-Falefa was brought in on the deal that landed him and Josh Donaldson with the New York Yankees and sent Gio Urshela and Gary Sanchez the other way. At the moment, that deal is proving its dividends. Not only did the Yankees find a first team-caliber shortstop, but Kiner-Falefa also had a nice hitting streak. The Yankees are not known for their defensive capabilities, but IKF might just be the anchor that they need.
Third baseman: Josh Donaldson, WAR: 0.6
Former American League MVP Josh Donaldson has established himself as the premier third baseman for the New York Yankees. The logic behind Donaldson's acquisition was, of course, his production on both sides of the ball and his veteran leadership. It will be a matter of fitness for the veteran as he's experienced lengthy injuries throughout his career. If he remains healthy, it's certain that he will deliver for the Bronx Bombers.
Outfielder: Aaron Judge, WAR: 1.5
Aaron Judge is one of the early picks to be the American League MVP this year. He has a slash line of .290/.356/.626/.982 with a league-leading ten homers. He's also chipped in with six doubles, 22 RBIs, and two stolen bases on 31 base hits.
"Save it for the Judge." - @ New York Yankees
Judge is in prime form this season. He just needs to look after his health, which has been an issue throughout his young career. If he stays healthy, he'll undoubtedly be one of the favorites for the AL MVP Award.
Outfielder: Aaron Hicks, WAR: 0.6
Not to be outdone by the star-studded names of Judge and Stanton in the Yankees' outfield, Aaron Hicks has carved a role for himself in the team. He has been a consistent bat in the lineup and a decent fielder. He even had a hit streak this year and has only missed a few games due to paternity leave.
Outfielder: Giancarlo Stanton, WAR: 0.4
Giancarlo Stanton is batting .259 with seven homers and 22 RBIs on 28 base hits. He is not the most solid option on defense, but his firepower, as we all know, is unmatchable, especially in his heyday. It's too early in the season to say if Stanton will be an MVP candidate, but if he can achieve the feat, he will be only the second player to win both the NL and AL MVP awards.