Aaron Judge
New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge (99) catches a fly ball by Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter J.D. Martinez (28) in the eighth inning at Dodger Stadium. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

New York Yankees have been dubious about Aaron Judge’s injury right from the start. After shying away from offering a return timeline, the front office revealed that the initial diagnosis suggested a spring and contusion in the right toe ligament. A sprain typically refers to the stretching of ligaments, which are tissues that connect bones in a joint.

Hence, the Yankees’ classification of Judge’s injury as a sprain initially indicated that it might be a less severe injury, suggesting a higher chance of a quicker recovery. However, after three long weeks, the batter is having trouble walking, let alone running, which raises many eyebrows. On top of that, the captain’s admission of “tearing” the ligament further fueled the speculations. So the question is, what exactly is happening with Judge’s toe?


Aaron Boone Settles Debate Over Aaron Judge’s Accurate Injury Diagnosis

Aaron Judge
New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Aaron Judge, the New York Yankees captain, dropped a bombshell while updating about his injury status. He claimed that he had “torn” the ligament of his right toe and was feeling significant pain while walking. The batter’s statement put the team in a fix as who earlier claimed that the ligament was just sprained. A tear typically implies a more significant injury involving a partial or complete rupture of the affected tissue. In the case of a toe injury, a tear could refer to damage to the ligaments, tendons, or other soft tissues surrounding the joint. Tears generally take longer to heal and may require more extensive treatment and rehabilitation.

After a massive uproar, the Yankees manager came forward to clear the air. In an interview with Talkin Yanks, Aaron Boone clarified that they are not trying to hide the batter’s injury diagnosis. He further explained that sprains have multiple levels to determine the severity of the injury, and a “tear” is also a level of a sprain. The difference is just in semantics. Moreover, after the latest scans, the team figured out that the injury was not any worse than they previously predicted. Judge’s recovery is right on track. Despite having proper knowledge of the diagnosis, Boone refused to put a timeline. He said that in medical things, there is a lot of grey area, and hence he is not in a position to make random guesses about a return date.

Without Aaron Judge, The Yankees Are Falling Apart!

Aaron Judge
The Yankees are batting .196 in the nine games since Aaron Judge went on the injured list.AP

New York Yankees offered a nine-year $360 million contract to Aaron Judge during this year’s off-season. The decision seemed more emotional as, logically, a nine-year contract did not make much sense. The Judge is 31 and will be 39 by the time his contract expires. Historically, none of the players in their mid to late 30s have been able to maintain a steady form. While Judge is not just “anyone,” but still the age factor will likely creep in after a stage. And without Judge, the Yankees are literally not good enough.

Let’s look at some statistics. This season, Judge has been on IL twice, and without his presence, the Yankees’ record is 13-16 with a .208 average, a .365 slugging percentage, and runs scored just 95. Now with Judge, the numbers rise enormously. With Judge in the lineup, the Yankees have a record of 30-19, with a .240 average, a .432 slugging percentage, and runs scored as many as 244. It’s safe to say that the team has no plan B apart from Judge and is highly overdependent on the batter. At this rate, the Bombers will face troubles not only this season but also for many years to come.