The injury bug hits Aaron Judge once again.
The New York Yankees were excited to see star outfielder Aaron Judge locked in and destroying baseballs thrown by opposing pitchers. But after exiting Tuesday’s game against the Atlanta Braves, fans became nervous about the seriousness of a potential injury. It certainly didn’t help that manager Aaron Boone only vaguely described the ailment as “lower body tightness.”
On Friday, the Yankees’ worst fear became a reality, as Judge was placed on the 10-day injured list with a right calf strain. The move is retroactive on Aug. 12, and the team called up infielder Thairo Estrada to fill Judge’s spot on the roster.
Judge’s latest injury a cause for concern
Boone sat Judge out of New York’s game on Wednesday against the Atlanta Braves to rest up after playing on Tropicana Field’s artificial turf during their four-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays this past season. But the manager said he was okay. After meeting with the media on Friday, Boone said the strain is a result of “wear and tear” and had nothing to do with playing on Tampa’s turf. Oh, and the skipper said that Judge’s calf strain is “very minor,” so there’s that.
Judge isn’t the only outfielder to deal with a calf strain. Fellow outfielder/designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton was placed on the injured list last week with a Grade 1 strain to his calf, and is expected to be sidelined for a total of three-to-four weeks. Of course, Yankee fans are already bracing for Judge to be out a similar amount of time, considering his injury history.
Back in 2017, Judge was hampered by a shoulder injury that resulted in his slump following that year’s All-Star break. Then, Judge suffered a fractured right wrist in 2018, knocking him out for nearly two months. Last year, he suffered an oblique strain at the start of the season, which also sidelined him for two months. Even back in spring training, Judge was dealing with a stress fracture in his right rib.
The injury to Judge stings for the Yankees, as he’s been red-hot for the start of the 60-game season. Through 17 games, the mammoth outfielder leads the league in home runs (nine), RBI (20), runs (16) and slugging percentage (.758).
We’ll learn more about Judge’s status by next week, where we can get a full determination as to when he can return to the field this MLB season.