DETROIT — Aaron Judge said the end of the streak wasn’t in his thoughts.
“I never even thought about it,” the rookie rightfielder said. “So it really means nothing to be honest with you.”
Judge went 1-for-1 with three walks in Tuesday night’s 13-4 victory over the Tigers. He was removed for a pinch hitter, Jacoby Ellsbury, in the seventh inning, meaning his record 37-game streak with a strikeout was over.
Joe Girardi said that was not the reason he pinch hit for the 25-year-old, who came into the game with a .169/.329/.355 slash line in the season’s second half.
“I figured I’d give him some rest,” Girardi said. “I might DH him tomorrow, try to keep him fresh. It’s not like he had one at-bat, he had four at-bats. It’s a chance to get him off his feet.”
Girardi put Gary Sanchez in the three hole instead of Judge, dropping, if you can call it that, the latter to cleanup. Sanchez went 3-for-5 with two home runs.
Judge said walking three times was encouraging, something he’s done all season.
“It’s a good sign for me,” said Judge, who leads the club in walks with 93. “I like to walk, get on base. If they’re not going to throw to me, no need to chase after pitches and get into bad counts.”
He reiterated again that the strikeout streak never bothered him.
“I only think about it when you guys ask me,” Judge smiled.
Todd Frazier wasn’t so sure.
“I don’t know about him but I would be going crazy every day,” Frazier said afterward. “I don’t know if I’d show it but, yeah, it’s good. I’m glad for him [it’s over]. He had a good game today.”
Manfred: life goes on
There has been a certain amount of hand-wringing among some fans and media regarding MLB’s upcoming Players Weekend, when big-leaguers will be wearing alternative uniforms with nicknames on the back. It will be the first time the Yankees, home this weekend to the Mariners, will have names of any kind on the backs of their jerseys.