NEW YORK — DJ LeMahieu reached 10 years of Major League service on Saturday, celebrating the milestone with a rare feat.
Sneaking a fly ball off White Sox left-hander Dallas Keuchel over the short porch in right, LeMahieu hit just the second grand slam of his big-league career, a pivotal play in the Yankees’ 7-5 victory over Chicago.
The 341-foot porch job came with two outs and two strikes in the second, giving New York a 5-0 lead.
“We had really good at-bats all day today, really,” LeMahieu said after the game. “I just had the big swing.”
Simply put, Lemahieu’s numbers with the bases loaded in pinstripes are bonkers. This was his first grand slam in a Yankees uniform, but the infielder is hitting .515 (17-for-33) with 6 doubles and 43 RBI with the bases juiced since joining the Bombers in 2019.
LeMahieu’s only other grand slam came in 2018 when he was with the Rockies.
Overall this year, LeMahieu has looked more like the MVP candidate he was during his first two seasons with New York, not the player that battled injuries and regressed offensively in 2021. LeMahieu will enter play on Sunday with a .267 batting average and a .749 OPS in 36 games played.
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LeMahieu isn’t the first Yankee to reach 10 years of service time this season either. Marwin Gonzalez also achieved the milestone this week while Anthony Rizzo, Josh Donaldson and Zack Britton also joined the exclusive club since Opening Day.
“It’s a big deal, I think it speaks to people’s talent, professionalism, toughness and I think DJ embodies all that,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “He’s still got a lot of years in front of him still on top of those 10, but to get us going with a big grand slam today on that 10 year anniversary is pretty cool.”
Asked about the mix of his heroics at the plate on Saturday and his longevity between the lines, LeMahieu briefly reflected back on his career. If you told the kid drafted by the Cubs in the second round in 2009 that he was destined for over a decade in the Bigs, with a few historic seasons along the way, LeMahieu wouldn’t have believed you.
“It’s hard to wrap my mind around 10 years,” he said. “10 years, have a good game and get a win? Can’t ask for much more.”
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