Long already working on Youk’s swing

The Yankees are clearly hoping that Kevin Youkilis can hold down the third base fort while Alex Rodriguez is on the shelf, but more than that they’ve also got to be hoping that Youkilis’ 2012 season was something of an aberration, and that Youkilis can return to being a very productive hitter who can help lengthen a lineup that’s taken a hit due to age, injury, and the departure of Nick Swisher. In the same article in which he discussed A-Rod’s injured hip, hitting coach Kevin Long revealed that he’s already working on Youkilis’ hitting mechanics, and that he hopes he can make major strides with the former Boston star.

“We looked at old film and compared it to 2012,” Long told Dan Martin of the Post. “We saw some considerable differences, mainly in his stance and it looked like the adjustments had an impact. … I think we can get him back to being an all-star caliber player.”

Youkilis had his worst year as a professional last season, and particularly struggled against right-handed pitchers, against whom he posted a wRC+ of just 89. On the bright side, however, he’s only two years removed from a very respectable .258/.373/.459 (126 wRC+) performance in 2011 and he remained a very patient hitter even through his struggles, so there’s plenty of reason to think that Youk still has a lot to offer a team, provided that he can stay healthy.

For more on Youkilis’ swing, see this excellent post by TYA’s Michael Eder from earlier this morning.

About Brien Jackson

Born in Southwestern Ohio and currently residing on the Chesapeake Bay, Brien is a former editor-in-chief of IIATMS who now spends most of his time sitting on his deck watching his tomatoes ripen and consuming far more MLB Network programming than is safe for one's health or sanity.

5 thoughts on “Long already working on Youk’s swing

  1. Not an excellent post by eder seeing that he shows a clip of youk on the white sox and uses it as his "2010" comparison video

  2. Wasn't it Long who helped Swisher after his down year with the White Sox. I know it's just a mere coincidence, but i have a lot of faith in Youk, especially because he's been able to do some special things in the past. Also, for the first time in a long time, i think the lineup has a good mixture of power, speed, and guys who hit for average. Hopefully i'm not just being overly optimistic.

  3. Long has had some major successes in his time here. He not only helps stars, he helps bench guys. My understanding is that he made a significant adjustment in DeWayne Wise's approach and he certainly proved to be a useful part both here and now in Chicago. At this point, Granderson's regression is probably the biggest problem he's got.

    I'd be surprised if the fans don't warm up to Youkilis like they did with Damon. We hated Youk because he was with the Red Sox, not because he wasn't a good player. His style should fit very well in the Bronx.