Yankees Aaron Judge

Akshita Patel

Will Captain Aaron Judge Succeed In Resolving Yankees Mess Upon Return?

Aaron Judge, the towering slugger of the New York Yankees, is undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with. When healthy, he hits like an absolute beast on the plate. This year, despite missing more than half of the season, Judge has been the lead run-getter for the Bronx Bombers. However, his prolonged absence due to injury has put the Yanks on a back foot.

Since Aaron Judge landed on IL with a toe injury, the Yankees have slipped to last place in the highly competitive East division. Having said that, after eight long weeks, the captain is on the brink of a return. As per rumors, Judge could be activated off IL on Friday vs. Orioles. But the question is, can the lone slugger clean up the whole team’s mess?


Aaron Judge May Not Be Able To Revive Yankees Single-Handedly Upon Return

Credit: Getty Images

The New York Yankees fans have been beaming with joy ever since Aaron Judge’s weekend return rumors started to flare up. Owing to the slugger’s stature as a hitter has made the fans believe that he could single-handedly lift the Yanks to playoffs. However, the faith seems a little far-fetched from a broader perspective. Apart from Judge’s absence, the team has a lot of underlying issues. It’s a popular belief that after Judge’s injury, the team’s reliable hitters struggled with form. But as per statistics, the veterans have been underperforming throughout the season. They have a collective batting average of .227, while the captain alone has over a .250 average.

Moreover, the highly talented farm system has failed to be set up. Anthony Volpe is performing like you expect off a rookie. He has had his moments of highs and lows. But mostly, Volpe has failed to turn up offensively. Oswald Peraza has received limited chances. But even in those few moments, Peraza failed to create an impact. Having said that, baseball is a team sport. A single player, even if he is Aaron Judge, cannot make much of an impact single-handedly. He will need support from his teammates to ensure success in the next few decisive weeks. Until and unless the whole unit comes together to take responsibility, the Yankees fans should keep the playoff dream at bay.

Yanks Playoff Odds Plumb Further

New York Yankees relief pitcher Ron Marinaccio, second from right, reacts with teammates Anthony Rizzo, right, DJ LeMahieu, second from left, and catcher Kyle Higashioka during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets, Tuesday, July 25, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

The New York Yankees’ playoff chances are getting bleaker with each passing day. As per Fangraphs’ projections, the team stands only a 32% chance of making it to the playoffs this season. Various factors are responsible for this low percentage. The Bronx Bombers remain in the highly competitive division as the Rays, and Orioles are soaring ahead. They need to beat at least one of them to ensure a wildcard spot. But as per the current trend, it looks unlikely.

On the other hand, the Yankees have a tough stretch of games in the next couple of weeks. They are scheduled to face Orioles, Astros, and Rays in the coming 10 days. If the team is able to triumph over these stretches, their odds will elevate by ten folds. Overall, the next two weeks will determine if the Yanks will miss the first postseason in seven years or not.