A question for all New York Yankees fans: If Aaron Judge is unsuccessful at hitting 60 home runs, do you think it is a disappointing season for the All-Star outfielder? Will fans categorize Judge’s season as a disappointment if he doesn’t get 60?
With 30 games left in the season, Judge has 51 home runs with 113 RBI. If Judge can’t find a way to hit nine more home runs, this season has still been nothing less than stellar for the New York Yankees superstar. Judge is a team player, and his main concern is to try to help the Yankees get back on track.
Regardless of the total home run number, Judge is still the favorite to win the 2022 AL MVP award. With the Yankees sliding and Judge coming up on the end of his contract, does Judge strictly care about 60 home runs? No, Judge’s main concern is punching his ticket to the postseason.
Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees chasing those who set the MLB home run record in a single season
When I was a kid, I remember watching the historic home run battle between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa, both players trying to catch Roger Maris’s home run record at 61. In 1998, while playing with the St. Louis Cardinals, McGwire joined Sosa of the Chicago Cubs in a chase of greatness. 1998 was a terrific season of baseball as both sluggers were chasing the single-season home-run record set by Roger Maris in 1961. McGwire ended up passing Maris and finished the season with 70 home runs. In time, it looked like McGwire’s record would never be broken, but it was only three years later that there would be a new home run leader. At age 36, while playing for the San Francisco Giants in 2001, Barry Bonds hit 73 home runs. Bonds still holds the record for the most home runs hit in a single season.
With the entire Yankee lineup struggling, Judge’s powerful bat needs to carry New York to the postseason. The Tampa Bay Rays are putting a ton of pressure on the Yanks and New York can’t seem to buy a run lately. Whenever Judge hits one out, the Yankees win the game. It is a lot of pressure to put on one player, but if Judge wants to get paid in the offseason, he needs to put his team on his back.
It is simple: If Judge keeps slugging home runs, the Yankees will lock up the American League East. If Judge starts to fade away, the Yankees will choke their division lead away. With Judge’s stellar season, losing the AL East and not hitting 60 home runs would be a hugely disappointing year.
So what’s my home run prediction? With 30 games left, can Judge hit 60 or more home runs? Looking at the rest of the schedule, the Yankees only play three teams with losing records — the Boston Red Sox, the Texas Rangers, and the Pittsburgh Pirates. With a tough schedule, Judge will be facing some difficult pitchers. Many teams that the Yankees face in September and October are trying to make the postseason, so it wouldn’t surprise me if some pitchers pitch around Judge when they can. To beat the Yankees, you can’t let Judge hit the long ball, so teams will pitch around him to face one of the Yankees’ struggling hitters.
Of course, you can’t always pitch around the All-Star outfielder, so I do believe Judge will hit 10 more home runs by the time the season ends. I just hope Judge can continue his stellar performance into the postseason. The Yankees are going to desperately need him if they want to make a run to the World Series.