With Aaron Judge making history Thursday night against the Red Sox, he faced a pitcher he’s had little success against in his career.
Judge had seen Boston starter Michael Wacha enter Yankee Stadium Thursday 15 times, going 0 for 14 with one walk and nine strikeouts since their first meeting in 2017.
In his quest to tie Roger Maris’ Yankees and the AL mark of 61 home runs in a season, Judge was also trying to finally get a hit against Wacha.
In their last go-round, Wacha walked away unscathed – in a way. He walked Judge twice and knocked him out when they last met on Thursday. Both walks, in the first and third innings, drew boos from the crowd at Yankee Stadium, still hoping to see Judge hit his 61st homer of the season.
Judge’s luck did not improve after Wacha was lifted, walking for the third time on the night against reliever John Schreiber, prompting more boos from the crowd. In the bottom of the ninth with a chance to make history with a home run, Judge narrowly missed with a 404-foot flyout off Matt Barnes.
All about Aaron Judge and his pursuit of the home run record:
It was Josh Donaldson’s single in the bottom of the 10th that gave the Yankees a 5-4 win and a playoff berth.
For Judge, he’ll get another chance at 61 on Friday – with opposing teams having a good idea of what happens when he doesn’t go deep.
On Wednesday, the Bronx faithful rained down boos on Pirates reliever Eric Stout, who also accompanied Judge on his last at bat of the night in the 14-2 victory.
“Yeah, I kind of thought that was the reaction of the crowd,” Pirates manager Derek Shelton said after the defeat. “I’ve been to Yankee Stadium many times. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone stay when the score is like this, but you know, there was everyone in the stadium.
New York Post