Yankees' Game 3 Lineup "Not Ideal" Admits Boone

New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone has what he calls an alignment that's "not ideal" for today's must-win Game 3 of the ALCS against the Houston Astros. He's got Giancarlo Stanton in left field—the first time he's played there in Yankee Stadium in three years.

Boone acknowledged “it’s not the ideal alignment” but explained that he didn’t want to put Harrison Bader in LF "so soon after" his injury. Bader was out for nearly three months this season with plantar fasciitis before returning in mid-September. 

Bader hasn't worked out in left field at all since coming back, so perhaps Boone didn't want to force any different footwork on him without some practice. 

Stanton played LF in Houston in Game 1, but hasn't played it in Yankee Stadium since the 2019 ALCS. Oswaldo Cabrera played in left in Game 2, but he'll be moving to shortstop for Saturday's game, mercifully for Yankees fans keeping Isaiah Kiner-Falefa and his season-long struggles at SS off the field. 

Bader will not be back in the leadoff spot for this game, instead dropping down to the 6th spot, with Anthony Rizzo moving to leadoff. And Josh Donaldson? He's batting 7th—the lowest he's batted in any lineup since 2013.

Photo: Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports