Gary Sheffield is the latest name in a line of superstars who had struggled initially in a Yankees uniform before returning to form.
Jason Giambi hovered around the Mendoza line in 2002, his first year with the Yankees until mid-May when he picked his hitting up and finished with MVP numbers. Alex Rodriguez, the reigning American League MVP, had hit just .203 in his first 15 games this year. He’s gotten back on track and at the All-Star break the third baseman posted 58 RBI and 22 home runs.
Even with this trend, it was surprising when Sheffield was hitting just .265 with three home runs midway through May. After all, this was a player who finished third in MVP voting in the National League last year, after hitting .330 with 39 home runs and 132 batted in. This was a player who hit 177 home runs in the last five years. This was a player who had played in Los Angeles for more than three years, a comparable market to New York.