Leaner Gary Sanchez ready to put defensive woes behind him

TAMPA — A leaner looking Gary Sanchez said he didn’t lose any weight this offseason, but perhaps his new build will help him behind the plate, where he struggled at times a year ago. “This offseason, I worked really hard on defense because I want to be better than

Gary Sanchez: I had no issues with Joe Girardi

One of Aaron Boone’s top priorities when he became Yankees manager was to get to know Gary Sanchez, who was benched briefly by Joe Girardi last season. Sanchez said he and Boone met Friday night, and the catcher indicated the meeting went well and is confident the two will

What Gary Sanchez is focused on to help his catching issues

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Gary Sanchez’s first step toward improving defensively has been to work on his body. Matt Krause, the Yankees’ strength and conditioning director, is in the Dominican Republic working out Sanchez. According to a person with knowledge of the program, Sanchez has dropped weight. While all

Yankees are the Evil Empire again

Cancel the Toe-Night Show dugout interviews and all those shenanigans. They were fun while they lasted, but, boom, that time of baseball innocence has passed. Those lovable Baby Bombers are now the Bronx Behemoths. Deal with it, haters. The Yankees are back where they belong, as public enemy No. 1. The

Teams don’t know how they’re going to beat these Yankees now

When it became clear the Yankees were on the verge of landing Giancarlo Stanton from the Marlins, one National League scout just laughed in response to what the lineup will look like in The Bronx next season. “I was at the All-Star Game in Miami in July,’’ the scout

Aaron Boone already working on relationship with Gary Sanchez

One of Aaron Boone’s first priorities once he was told he got the job as Yankees manager was to contact some of his new players. “I’ve reached out to a lot already,’’ Boone said at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday. “I’ve texted with a lot of them. I’ve spoken with

The Yankees’ questions Aaron Boone will need to answer

“He stole. He slept. He was rude to the customers. There goes the best employee a convenience store ever had.” — Apu, talking about Homer on “The Simpsons” Joe Girardi bristled — at umpires, at media questions, at inept security guards — as regularly as some people floss. He made

Youthful Yankees are already “excited for next year’

One of them is 25, at the start of what the Yankees hope is a long stay in The Bronx spent launching monster home runs. The other is 37 and on the back nine of what is today a borderline Hall of Fame career that still has legs. Together, Aaron Judge

How the Yankees can finish 2018 in The Canyon of Heroes

The heavy lifting is done, yet here comes the hard part. Over the past few years Brian Cashman has helped overturn an organizational philosophy that favored older, expensive and famous to young, deep and flexible, both in skill and finances. The 2017 Yankees came faster and went further than expected, reaching Game

Yankees come up empty in Game 7 as season ends in a whimper

HOUSTON — In a clubhouse so quiet you heard the shower water hit the floor down the hall, the Yankees talked about next year shortly after this one ended in heartbreak and disappointment. “We are all excited for next year,’’ Aaron Judge said after the Yankees failed to win one of

Brian McCann makes Yankees pay even more

HOUSTON — This stunningly successful Yankees season concluded with a sting of reality Saturday night at Minute Maid Park. The proper order of things reasserted itself in time to send the Yankees east, toward New York and the offseason, instead of west, toward Los Angeles and the World Series. Now batting

Brian McCann delivered in a huge spot against former team

HOUSTON — Brian McCann finally made his presence felt against his former team. The former Yankees catcher looked overmatched for much of the ALCS, including in his first at-bat Friday night against Luis Severino in Game 6. But with the Astros desperately looking for a hit to break through against the right-hander

Yankees can’t solve Verlander, Astros force Game 7

HOUSTON — The Yankees’ improbable run toward a World Series ticket will end Saturday night in ecstasy or heartbreak. With a chance to win the ALCS on Friday night by beating the Astros at Minute Maid Park, the Yankees were dominated by Justin Verlander and done in by Luis Severino’s wildness

Yankees have barely scratched the surface of what they can be

HOUSTON — The way this works — the way it has worked for decades and decades — is if you do a massive sell-off one year, you do not get to the brink of the World Series the next. You certainly don’t start eliminating the teams to which you sent the

Gary Sanchez back to doing what he does best

Gary Sanchez’s defense isn’t a concern all of a sudden. His crucial Game 2 mistake isn’t being analyzed anymore. When the Yankees’ catcher is swinging the bat like this, his warts aren’t just camouflaged. They’re insignificant, not even footnotes to his offensive production. The day after he drove in the game-winning runs

Yankees lineup goes back to normal for pivotal Game 5

The Yankees lineup is going back to normal after a one-game audible. Gary Sanchez will return to his catching duties Thursday night in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series, and Austin Romine will return to the bench. Chase Headley, a switch-hitter, will get the nod at designated hitter and

This is the Gary Sanchez bust-out Yankees knew was coming

Gary Sanchez was hitless in his previous 18 at-bats when he came to the plate in the bottom of the seventh and the Yankees trailing by three runs. The catcher — who served as the DH in Tuesday’s Game 4 because he’s had a hard time catching Sonny Gray — had

Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez answer the bell in nick of time

They represent the type of visual that makes sports teams salivate. That will generate countless Old-Timers’ Day ovations down the road. History in real time: Aaron Judge smoking an eighth-inning double off the left-field wall. Standing at second base like a man on fire, pointing with both arms to his teammates

Can’t demoting Gary Sanchez be a credit to Yankees roster?

It’s so easy to forget, isn’t it? We focus so much on what’s in front of us that we neglect to look behind us. The Yankees didn’t start Gary Sanchez behind the plate Tuesday in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series, instead shifting the big bat to designated hitter

Why Joe Girardi thinks this is about to turn

Joe Girardi said he hasn’t seen signs of panic from his players during the first heartbreaking two games of the ALCS against the Astros. That may be true, but the manager hasn’t seen many hits either in two losses that dropped the Yankees into an 0-2 ditch heading into Game 3

Girardi tries to diagnose what’s wrong with Yankees’ young stars

Throughout their first full seasons in the majors, Gary Sanchez and Aaron Judge put up numbers that had people running for the record books, whether it was Sanchez breaking the franchise record for homers by a catcher or Judge hitting the most home runs ever by a rookie. But as the

Ex-teammate thinks Sanchez has done “exceptionally well’

HOUSTON — Gary Sanchez’s rough postseason took another bad turn when he botched Didi Gregorius’ throw to the plate in the bottom of the ninth that allowed Jose Altuve to score on Carlos Correa’s double to give the Astros a 2-1 win over the Yankees in Game 2 of the

Why are longtime athletes still using interpreters?

Dear John: I can accept the Yankees’ Gary Sanchez not speaking English. What gets me are players who have been in the majors for 10 or 20 years and still need an interpreter. On the other hand, baseball players from any country, most whom have never attended college, seem to speak more

Judge and Sanchez need to bust out, or the Yankees are done

HOUSTON — Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez, ahead of schedule, helped make the future now for the Yankees. The problem is that the future is now. Lights, cameras, October. “You have two guys who are really still rookies,” Reggie Jackson said. “They don’t even have 1,000 at-bats in the majors. My

“Stay tuned’: Girardi strongly hints at a new DH for Game 1

HOUSTON — With his DHs hitless in 20 at-bats during the ALDS, the Yankees’ Joe Girardi sounded like a manager contemplating adding a third wheel to the picture. Asked about Matt Holliday getting his first taste of this postseason, Girardi said, “Stay tuned.’’ With lefty Dallas Keuchel starting for the Astros in

Joe Girardi knows his players may have saved him from infamy

The Yankees haven’t climbed all the way out of the 0-2 ditch Joe Girardi helped put them in when he botched the challenge process in Game 2 on Friday in Cleveland. Yet, with the best-of-five series shifting to Progressive Field for Game 5 on Wednesday, the Yankees manager understands what his

Severino dominates as Yankees force winner-take-all Game 5

When the Yankees arrived home after losing the first two games of the ALDS to the Indians in Cleveland, they were nine innings away from taking the kids to school, golfing, hunting, fishing or other things players do when the season runs out of road. Now, after two victories at Yankee

Judge and Sanchez keep Yankees alive with their defense

Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez have hit home runs at a record-setting pace since arriving in The Bronx. In Sunday night’s season-extending, 1-0 win over the Indians in Game 3 of the ALDS, they kept the Yankees alive with their defense. Judge saved a two-run home run by Francisco Lindor in the