Aaron Boone expected a little more noise upon Luke Voit’s return on Tuesday. Instead, the typically boisterous first baseman quietly rejoined the Yankees after he was activated off the injured list.
“He was actually pretty calm walking in,” Boone said with a laugh. “Usually, we’ll hear him walk by the coaches room.”
Voit’s arrival may have been unlike him, but his bat has been its normal, loud self in the days since. After spending nearly a month out with an oblique strain—his second I.L. stint of the year after a torn meniscus required surgery and delayed his season debut until May 11—Voit has made an instant impact on a Yankees offense that was desperate for production from his corner of the infield.
Voit has four hits in his first three games back, including two home runs, a triple, and a walk-off rope off the left field wall at Yankee Stadium, which cemented a comeback victory over the Royals on Wednesday. He has struck out five times in 13 at-bats, but the Yankees will happily take that considering what the 2020 home run champ has done when he’s made contact.
“I know this team has been struggling at the first base position, and that’s all my fault for not being here,” Voit said after the game-winner. “I knew that I had to come back and contribute and do damage.”
Voit has done just that so far, jump-starting a Yankees lineup that often struggled in his absence while relying on players like Mike Ford (.133/.278/.283) and Chris Gittens (.095/.200/.238) at first.
New York has scored a total of 19 runs in Voit’s first three games back, including what’s become a rare offensive outburst on Thursday. The Yankees thrashed Kansas City, 8-1, in the rubber game. Voit hit his third home of the season.
With a rematch against the Red Sox looming in Boston, the Yankees are now 11-4 in games that Voit has played in this season. Now that he’s fully healthy, they’re hoping they don’t have to play too many more without him.
“There’s no question that when Luke Voit is healthy and in our lineup, it’s another heavyweight in the order,” Boone said Thursday. “It adds length to our order. It’s another elite, power bat to have to get through.”
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