Slumping Brett Gardner Gives High-Powered Yankees a Hole in Bottom of Lineup

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Our weekly look at each of the Red Sox' opponents in the AL East surveys the New York Yankees, who already dropped their left fielder from first to ninth in the lineup.

Brett Gardner emerged as a standout left fielder for the Yankees in 2010. In addition to hitting .277, stealing 47 bases and scoring 97 times, Gardner displayed a phenomenal glove.

He has continued to track them down in left (his catch in the bottom of the eighth inning Sunday may have saved the game for New York), but Gardner has been a mess at the plate. After an 0-for-5, four-strikeout effort in the win over Baltimore, he was hitting only .140 and had 19 strikeouts in just 16 games.

Gardner had stolen 86-of-104 bases prior to 2011. He is just 3-for-6 this year and is the primary reason the Yankees rank tied for last in the majors (with another AL East team, Toronto) in hits produced by left fielders.

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