Yandy Diaz recapturing his 2023 form could help Rays plow past .500

Yandy Diaz has been dominant in the past games for the Rays. He looks forward to continuing to be in his 2023 form, as he has been crushing balls from left to right with his exceptional defense.
New York Yankees v Tampa Bay Rays
New York Yankees v Tampa Bay Rays / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

Yandy Diaz has been on a tear lately, leading the Rays toward victories against the Yankees and Red Sox this past week. In his last seven starts, Diaz has slashed .379/.419/.690 with two home runs, both against the New York Yankees. Diaz crushed a 401-foot bomb against Nestor "Nasty Nestor" Cortes on Saturday evening, which led to a 7-2 Rays win. It was Diaz's first homer since Opening Day against the Blue Jays, when he blasted one off Jose Berrios. In the first game of the opening series against the Red Sox, Diaz connected on three hits, helping the Rays edge the Sox 5-3.

Here is what Kevin Cash said about Yandy Diaz's thrilling performance during the win against the Yankees.

"I stood consistent in saying that it was a matter of time for Diaz. Hitting is hard, but it seems to be he is coming out of it, and when you see Diaz hitting line drives over the ballpark, slamming home runs and doubles, it is a good thing for us."

Rays Manager Kevin Cash

Diaz, when asked, responded in kind about his first homer (against the Yankees) since Opening Day.

"I'm happy; it's been months since I last hit a home run. I'm content, and I thank God it was a powerful hit."

Rays first baseman Yandy Diaz

Yandy Diaz is the constant leading the new-look Rays

Diaz is leading the Rays in XBH in the last seven games with five and total bases with 19. His ability to get on base has been a huge factor in recent victories for the Rays. He also scored the most runs with seven and leads the team in hits with 10. In the past 15 days, he slammed 17 hits and four doubles in 51 at-bats. May has been good so far for Yandy Diaz, as he is putting up a .362 batting average and a .400 OBP. His offense is starting to heat up big time as he looks to continue his streak.

Diaz's defense also shining

His defense has been exceptional to watch recently as well; he leads the Rays with the most double plays turned with 22 and has only made two errors. Diaz also leads the Rays in range factor with 7.51. Range factor is determined by dividing the sum of a fielder's putouts and assists by his total number of defensive games played.

Yandy must continue to be Yandy

Yandy Diaz going back to his 2023 form is exciting for the Rays, as he is looking to make the All-Star team for the second straight year. The 2023 A.L Batting Champion is looking to swing away and do the best in his ability to help the Rays. While the Rays have other hot hitters like Isaac Paredes, Randy Arozarena, and Jonny DeLuca, the Rays need Yandy to pave the way and let him do his thing. That could help them not just reach .500, but surpass it.