The Yankees and Opening Day. Let’s Take a Look Back at Past Performances
Last night on the Braves broadcast they said the Severino is the youngest pitcher to start opening day for the Yankees since Lefty Gomez in 1932.
That made me want to go look into some other opening day stats, records, and oddities.
So I did.
Let’s take a look at how the Yankees have performed in their season openers throughout history.
First and foremost it should be noted that the Yankees are currently on a big opening day losing streak. They have lost the first game of the season for the past 5 years. In fact, since Joe Girardi took over as manager in 2008, the Yankees have gone 2-8 on opening day. Not what you want! Hopefully, Boone can right the opening day ship.
Since 1903 the Yankees opening day record is 63-51-1.
They have shut out their opponent 12 times and been shut out 8.
The largest margin of victory came in 1955 when they destroyed the Washington Senators 19-1.
Talk about a tough way to start the season if you are the Senators. Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, and Skowron all hit home runs. Bob Cerv (neva hoid of him) and Whitey Ford had 4 RBIs each. Whitey also pitched a complete game while only allowing two hits and one run. The run came from a balk in 6th inning.
Whitey had 5 1-2-3 innings. The Senators pitchers did much worse. Much much worse. Check out the lines on these guys.
The Senators went on to have a 53-101 record in 1955. The Yankees won 96 games and lost to the Dodgers in the World Series.
The next largest margin of victory came in 2006 at the Oakland Coliseum when they beat the A’s 15-2.
The 2006 opening day lineup is pretty fun to look at…
- Johnny Damon
- Derek Jeter
- Gary Sheffield
- Alex Rodriguez
- Jason Giambi
- Hideki Matsui
- Jorge Posada
- Bernie Williams
- Robinson Cano
and Randy Johnson on the bump. How is many Hall of Famers that? 5? 50 percent of the opening day guys.
The A’s had Barry Zito on the mound and the Yankees slapped him around hard in the 2nd inning.
The Yankees have had three walk off wins to start the season. 1943, 1949 and 1957.
They have lost on a walk off 5 times. Most recently in 2012 to the Tamba Bay Rays.
Last 10 Years
Here is the lineup by most appearances per positions for the last decade.
Starting Pitcher: CC Sabathia (6 appearances)
First Base: Teixeria (6)
Second Base: Cano (6)
Third Base: A-Rod (4)
Shortstop: Jeter (6)
Left Field: Gardner (6)
Center Field: Granderson (4)
Right Field: Swisher, Beltran (3)
Catcher: McCann, Posada (3)
DH: A-Rod, Matsui (2)
Here are some shooting stars. The collection of random players who have started one opening day for the Yankees and will never start another is pretty wild and sad.
Kevin Youkilis, 1B 2013
Stephen Drew, 2B 2015
Brian Roberts, 2B 2014
Kelly Johnson, 3B 2014
Jayson Nix, 3B 2013
Vernon Wells, LF 2013
Matt Holliday, DH 2017
Ben Francisco, DH 2013
Raul Ibanez, DH 2012
Nick Johnson, DH 2010
Nunez got a start at SS in 2013 and Cervelli got the gig that year as well.
2018 New Comers
Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge, and Aaron Hicks have all got an opening day start under their belt. Didi and Gardner have multiple. Our first-timers this year will be Giancarlo Stanton, Brandon Drury, Neil Walker, Tyler Wade and Luis Severino. Hopefully, this years lineup becomes the regular in the same way Tex, Cano, Jeter, ARod, Swisher did.