Aaron Judge is known more for the damage he can do with his bat. But let’s not overlook the fact that his glove work is pretty strong too.
The New York Yankees right fielder put his defensive skills on display during the 2017 postseason, robbing Francisco Lindor of the Cleveland Indians and Yuli Gurriel of the Houston Astros of home runs in the ALDS and ALCS respectively.
He did it again on Friday night, pulling off his first career regular season home run robbery by taking away a potential game-winner from Baltimore’s Caleb Joseph in the 13th inning.
Judge’s height certainly helps. At 6-foot-7, he can get his glove higher over the wall with less effort than most outfielders. With that in mind, Friday’s robbery was by no means an easy one. Joseph’s ball appeared to be slicing, and Judge had to time his jump just right to pull it down.
Judge did just that, and in the process kept the Yankees hopes alive for another inning.
The Yankees slugger even led off the Yankees half of the 13th, which undoubtedly had some fans envisioning a storybook ending. Though Judge would reach base on a walk, the Yankees came up empty after Giancarlo Stanton’s long drive to left field hooked just a few feet foul.
Baltimore would go on to win the game 7-3 in the 14th thanks to a Pedro Alvarez grand slam that landed a few rows beyond Judge’s reach.
It was a painful loss for the Yankees in more ways than one. Starting pitcher CC Sabathia left after four innings with hip soreness. He’ll have an MRI on Saturday. Infielders Brandon Drury (migraines) and Tyler Wade (illness), and catcher Gary Sanchez (right calf), would also leave the game. It’s hoped Sanchez was only suffering from cramping.
The Yankees will hope for better luck when the division rivals meet again on Saturday afternoon.
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