Baseball is back! The SF Giants play against the New York Yankees on Opening Day at Yankee Stadium. We know that Logan Webb will be the starting pitcher, but what will the rest of the lineup look like?
Predicting the SF Giants Opening Day lineup against the Yankees
The Giants will face off against star pitcher Gerrit Cole in the first game of the season. The details for the game can be found here. The right-handed hurler posted a 3.50 ERA in 33 starts last year while leading the Yankees to the ALCS.
The Yankees lineup will feature AL MVP Aaron Judge. It is no secret that the Giants tried to real in the power-hitting outfielder. The odds were steep, but Judge decided to return to the Yankees on a nine-year, $360 million deal.
The 30-year-old was anointed the team's captain as soon as he signed the deal. He will be joined by Giancarlo Stanton, Anthony Rizzo, Josh Donaldson, and D.J. LeMahieu. The Yankees also added former Giants lefty Carlos Rodón, but he will begin the year on the injured list.
We know that Giants manager Gabe Kapler likes to leverage platoon matchups, so today's lineup will lean heavily on left-handed hitters. The Giants have a lot of options and should be able to run out a quality lineup against righties. I am taking my best guess as to what the lineup might look like:
1. LaMonte Wade Jr. - 1B
2. Thairo Estrada - 2B
3. Joc Pederson - DH
4. Michael Conforto - RF
5. David Villar - 3B
6. Brandon Crawford - SS
7. Mike Yastrzemski - CF
8. Joey Bart - C
9. Blake Sabol - LF
I will admit that the Mitch Haniger injury threw a wrench into the plans. I would prefer to see Haniger hit somewhere in the 3-4-5 vicinity, but Villar is coming off of a strong season. Otherwise, I feel like the lineup would look a bit stronger.
I also tried to sneak J.D. Davis into the lineup, but could not find a position. The front of the lineup has some strength. The key matchups against Cole will be Pederson, who has four hits in nine at-bats against him, and Conforto, who has talliet two hits in seven at-bats with a home run.
The back of the lineup is tough to predict given that is consists of unproven players in the case of Bart and Sabol as well as players who experienced rough 2022 seasons in the case of Crawford and Yastrzemski.
The more I look at it, it feels like the Giants could use another lefty bat. However, Haniger has relatively even platoon splits, so he should be able to fill that void. Anyways, Opening Day is finally here! The first game of the season will be over by lunch, so you will know if it is going to be a good or bad day pretty early.