Memorial Day is around the corner, which means it's time to evaluate where your favorite MLB team stands in the 2023 season. It's a process that New York Yankees fans, one of the more rabid groups in the sport, have already gone through about 100 times thus far.
While New York has had better fortune in the month of May, they had been battered by injuries and were, at one point, in last place in the American League East, prompting general manager Brian Cashman to depart from the shadows a bit earlier than fans are accustomed to give an early state of the union and ease concerns about his club.
The Yankees may be playing better baseball– 17-8 in May- but that doesn't mean that the fanbase is satisfied with every player on the 2023 roster.
From this off-season's prized acquisition Carlos Rodon's struggles with injury, to the front office's continued support of Josh Donaldson to the poor play of DJ LeMahieu, there have been no shortage of moments that have made Yankees fans fed up.
But which players on the 2023 team have fans ready to give up altogether?
That's what we'll discuss here.
Without further ado, here are three players Yankees fans are already fed up with.
Yankees players fans are fed up with in 2023
3. Kyle Higashioka
There are definitely players who anger Yankees fans more than backup catcher Kyle Higashioka, which is why he's only number-three on this list.
But when your backup is forced into action on a regular basis, like Higashioka has been after the injury to starting backstop Jose Trevino, poor performances are going to stand out more.
And Higashioka has not been great.
Not generally known for his bat, Higashioka has descended into automatic out territory, as he has posted a ghastly .591 OPS and a 62 OPS+, both the second-worst marks of his career.
To make matters worse, Higashioka hasn't been much better behind the plate, which used to be his calling card for the Yanks.
He sits in just the 25th percentile in pitch framing after placing in the 84th and 71st in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
Higashioka has also been poor at controlling runners on the basepaths.
So bad has he been that Yankees fans are ready to see more of Ben Rortvedt, the catcher acquired in the Josh Donaldson deal who just made his debut with the team after missing the entire 2022 campaign and the beginning of 2023 with injuries.
2. Clarke Schmidt
It's hard for Yankees fans to get too fed up with Clarke Schmidt, who has helped fill the void left in the rotation with the likes of Luis Severino, who has since returned, and Rodon sidelined.
Still, Yankees fans were at least expecting the next man up to be serviceable.
But Schmidt, who has pitched to a 5.58 ERA and 1.60 WHIP in 50 innings, has been dreadful.
The underlying numbers aren't much better.
Schmidt is in the bottom-15 percent of the league in hard-hit rate and average exit velocity against.
Essentially, it's been a loud batting practice session for the opposition when Schmidt is on the mound.
So, what gives?
Schmidt has thrown 233 sinkers; batters are hitting .381 against the pitch. The Yankees hurler has thrown 215 cutters, with opposing batters keying in on the offering to the tune of a .333 average.
To be fair to Schmidt, he had thrown just 70 1/3 innings in the first three seasons of his career before he was thrust into action as a starting pitcher.
He is basically figuring out how to be a starter in the big leagues each time he goes out.
Not exactly ideal for the Yankees, who are already playing catch-up in the American League East, the best division in baseball.
But Schmidt has provided some encouraging signs lately.
He has allowed just three runs in his last two outings after getting shelled by the Tampa Bay Rays for seven runs earlier in May.
It's small, but it's a start.
Schmidt had better hope that it's the start of something sustainable, as Yankees fans are getting fed up.
1. DJ LeMahieu
Ahh, we have arrived at number one on our list: DJ LeMahieu. Let's be real here. LeMahieu has not been awful by any means.
He just hasn't been 2019-20 LeMahieu.
For a closer look, here is The Machine's slash line from his All-Star 2019 campaign and the shortened 2020 season: .336/.386/.536.
Now, here is his slash line from 2021-23: .263/.348./.373.
LeMahieu still gets on base at a decent clip but there is almost no power to his game anymore- and he doesn't hit for the same average he did a few years ago.
LeMahieu's plate discipline, a strength of his game for years, has been alarming this year.
His 26.3 percent strikeout rate would be the worst mark of his career if it stands for the whole year.
LeMahieu's ability to get to pitches outside the zone has declined dramatically this year, per Fangraphs.
Of course, he is much more than just an offensive player for the Yankees. He has played league average defense- or much better- at first, second and third base.
In a year where injuries have struck the Yankees, he has been one of their more dependable players, appearing in 47 games.
Here's the reality.
LeMahieu is in the third season of a six-year, $90 million contract he inked with the Yankees back in the 2021 offseason.
New York was expecting at least a couple more seasons from LeMahieu at the level he performed at in 2019.
They have yet to see that level of play from him since he signed the dotted line.
LeMahieu is not hated by the fanbase. But patience runs thin among Yankees fans- ask Aaron Hicks.
If LeMahieu doesn't start figuring things out at the dish, Yankees fans are only going to get more fed up.