Aaron Judge, the New York Yankees’ pillar of strength, missed eight prolonged weeks due to a toe injury. Last week, he returned back to the lineup but in half health. In his very first at-bat post return, Judge donned a protective strap over his right foot to avoid any further damage. However, the Yanks decided to level it up, which apparently backfired.
In his second straight start post-return, Aaron Judge played in the outfield. However, the very next day, he was benched, which garnered a lot of backlash from the fans as the Yankees lost the series to Baltimore Orioles. When the captain returned back in the lineup for the series against the Rays, his positioning raised many eyebrows.
Yankees Cautiously Move Aaron Judge Back Into The DH Role Vs. Rays
The New York Yankees adopted a very cautious approach towards Aaron Judge as he had returned from injury half healed. Initially, the plan was to play him as a designated hitter. However, the team ditched their very own plan and put Judge out in the field on his second day of return. The move allegedly backfired as the slugger developed some soreness in his injured toe. While it’s not alarming for now, the Yankees chose to avoid any imminent risk. Hence, against the Rays, Judge played as a DH for two straight games. Not only that, the team manager, Aaron Boone, admitted that the captain was not feeling his normal self, which they apparently expected. The hope is that he continues to grow better as the season moves ahead.
Having said that, Aaron Judge has looked normal on the plate. Since the return, he has registered 3-for-7 with a home run and six walks. Judge’s presence and contribution as a hitter are more important than his defensive contribution. On the other hand, Aaron Boone is apparently open to playing Judge in the field in the future. The skipper said that he is having conversations with the slugger on a daily basis, and when he feels right, the team will move him back to the right field. As days progresses, the Yankees will closely monitor their captain’s health status. His toe is still fragile and needs critical care. With the Yankees standing at the brink of playoff elimination, Judge’s presence, irrespective of his role, will be of utmost importance.
Judge Blames Yankee Players For The Loss Against Rays
Meanwhile, Aaron Judge’s return has failed to produce results for the New York Yankees. After losing to the Orioles, the club went down to Tampa Bay Rays. The offense, as usual, contributed heavily to the loss. Naturally, the captain was miffed and put the blame on the players. He said that the team’s fortune lies within their own hands.
The current set of groups in the Yankee clubhouse is talented and fully capable of turning things around. Hence, Aaron Judge urged his teammates to step up and compete on a daily basis. The season is still not over, and the Yankees still have a lot of time on deck to make a playoff push.