Didi Gregorius did more than tie the score with his second-inning home run Sunday. He also drew even with Derek Jeter for the most home runs, 24, in a season by a Yankees shortstop.
“He’s had a great year, a great month of September as well. He’s playing at an extremely high level,” Joe Girardi said. “That’s a pretty big name to tie.”
Gregorius homered for a third consecutive day and admitted that even he is sometimes surprised by his power. “Mostly I’m trying to hit line drives. If I hit it, I hit it,” he said.
If there is one trait he shares with the player whom he succeeded at the position, it is a reluctance to wax poetic about his own accomplishments. “I’m just trying to play the game. I’m not worried about the careers or somethings that’s out there, the records,” he said. “I’m just trying to be the best player out there, trying to help my team. I don’t really worry about the stats.”
He has two weeks to break the record. Jeter hit his 24th in 1999 on Sept. 19 and had none after that.
Judge wore out Orioles
Aaron Judge scored on Starlin Castro’s eighth-inning sacrifice fly, giving him 31 runs in 19 games against the Orioles this year. He is the first to score that many against an opponent since Ted Williams did it in 22 games against the St. Louis Browns 70 years ago. Judge went 26-for-61 (.426) with 11 home runs and 24 RBIs against Baltimore this season . . . The Yankees’ 154 runs (in 19 games) against the Orioles are the most by any team against any opponent in a single season since the White Sox scored 158 (in 22 games) against the Red Sox in 1960.
Clint Frazier staggered a bit and got his glove on Chris Davis’ drive to deep left in the second, but the ball fell for a double and led to a run. “I misjudged it,” Frazier said. “It was hooking and then it ran back. I thought it was going to be closer to the wall than it was.”