Sonny Gray is an All-Star.
That's right, read it and embrace it because that sentence shouldn't come as a surprise.
After a disastrous tenure in the Bronx, Gray — as predicted — has done a complete 180 with the Cincinnati Reds. The 29-year-old is 5-5 with a 3.59 ERA, striking out 10.3 batters per nine innings, a stat line sufficient to be sent to Cleveland for this year’s Midsummer Classic.
Gray has continued the tradition of talented pitchers struggling in pinstripes only to be sent elsewhere and thrive. He added himself to the list led by AJ Burnett and Nathan Eovaldi.
James Paxton is the latest example. The southpaw owns a career-high 4.01 ERA through his first 15 games in the Bronx, and has been wildly inconsistent.
But why is it that these players struggle? The Yankees always give the same, tired, “he can’t pitch in New York” explanation for every given pitcher. However, recent examples have wholly dismissed these narratives.
Two arguments generally are brought up when discussing failed talent in pinstripes. The main one being the bright lights are too much to handle for said player.