Isiah Kiner-Falefa
New York Yankees shortstop Isiah Kiner-Falefa is upbeat about his defense and the work he’s put in with coaches.AP

Isiah Kiner-Falefa, New York Yankees’ starting shortstop, recently spoke out against rumors that he had the “yips” late in the 2022 season.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa, the New York Yankees infielder, has donned the utility hat this year in pursuit of survival in the Bronx. The infielder suffered a slump in the latter half of the 2022 season, both offensively as well as defensively. As a result, he lost his desired starting shortstop position and moved down to the second and third base. Even this year, he is unlikely to earn back the shortstop role.


On the other hand, Kiner-Falefa also underwent a rough patch in his performance 2022 season postseason. He made five fielding errors in 13 game appearances within a span of 15 days. It led to rumor speculation that he was dealing with the yips. Yips is a term used for performance anxiety among athletes during crucial game plays. It occurs when an athlete suddenly loses their ability to execute a standard physical action, such as throwing a ball.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa Debunks Suffering From “Yips” Rumors

Isiah Kiner Falefa
Icon Sportswire

New York Yankees infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa came under scanner last season due to multiple lapses in the field. The infielder performed awfully at shortstop and hence had to be demoted. Moreover, he committed a ridiculously high number of errors in the postseason, which led to rumors of him suffering from the “Yips” phenomenon. However, Isiah has debunked all the rumors while addressing the issue. In his defense, he said that those missed plays had only a 25% of success rate.

Isiah further dug into math and claimed the conversion rate of those missed plays was 2.5 out of 10. Hence, he is proud of the effort he made to chase those plays. Further speaking on the shortstop role, the infielder gracefully accepted defeat and announced his contention for the utility role. Isiah Kiner-Falefa believes that if he fits into the new role, he can very well extend his stay in New York, unlike the popular belief of a possible trade. So far, Isiah has played center field in spring training and is further gearing up to play the role of a catcher.

Yankees Infielder All Set To Play Catch This Week

Isiah Kiner-Falefa
(Smiley N. Pool/The Dallas Morning News)

Meanwhile, Isiah Kiner-Falefa takes another step further in his bid to become a utility player. After playing center field, the infielder is all set to play catch this week. Isiah earlier played in this position in 2016 during his association with the Texas Rangers. He agreed to Rangers’ request in a desperate bid for major league promotion. However, Isiah aced the role and started as a regular catcher until 2020.

Now, two years later, the infielder is all set to take up the role of catcher for the New York Yankees. The Yankees are suffering from incessant injuries, which have depleted their catching depth. Hence, they need someone from the bullpen to step up for the role when necessary. It remains to be seen if Isiah Kiner-Falefa can transform into the new role and help the Bombers in the long run.