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Aaron Judge knows second half will only get tougher for Yankees – The Denver Post

PITTSBURGH – After 81 games, Aaron Judge knows what it will take in the second half. The Yankees slugger has been through a lot in his six years in the major leagues. He won Rookie of the Year, he won a Home Run Derby. He won the division.

But in the end, Judge lost the last five years. So, with 81 games down and 81 to go, Judge has some advice to try and change that ending.

“There are a lot of things, but I think it’s simple,” Judge said of what he wants him and his teammates to remember as they turn the corner this season. “We have a good ball club here. We have a lot of good guys here who know what they are doing. So I think when you get into those scorching days of summer, don’t try to do too much, stick to your plan.

“If you’re a pitcher or a positional player, stick with what you’re doing and keep playing on the team and that’s kind of what got us that position,” Judge continued. “Every night a different guy steps up for us and does something special. So you just have to keep leaning on each other and we’ll get through this.

While the first half of the season didn’t end the way the Yankees would have liked, losing to the Pirates 5-3 on Tuesday night, the Yankees are in a great position halfway through. At 58-23, they have the best record in baseball with a ridiculous +159 point differential. They have a 13-game lead over the Red Sox in the AL East.

The Bombers lead the majors in runs scored and home runs (133). Aaron Judge leads the majors with 29 homers. The Yankees’ pitching staff has the lowest ERA (2.93), best WHIP (1.07) and tied for best batting average against (.212) and allowed fewest runs (246) in the big leagues this season.

“I thought we had a chance to be a really good team,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “Anytime you have the kind of record we have at this stage, I don’t know if you can necessarily predict something like that. But certainly very happy with the way we’ve been playing so far in the first half. , knowing that it is just that. We all understand that there is a long way to go, but we are convinced that we have a chance to be a really special team and that we can win games in different ways , which has given this team a lot of confidence.”

The Yankees are on pace to win 116 games this season and Judge is on pace to hit 58 home runs this season. There’s a chance some records will fall if the Yankees have a comparable second half.

That, however, is not something Judge or Boone want to focus on right now.

“It’s such a long way to go to be in these kinds of conversations,” Boone said. “The most important thing is that I think we are determined to want to be a Championship club and we know there is a long way to go. We feel like we have shown so far that at least that potential is there. But for now that’s all and we’ll keep working hard to be the best team we can be.”

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