Aaron Judge Superman! Grand Slam, 2-Run Bomb, Spectacular Catch. NY 11 KC 5

The Yankees scored 8 runs against the Kansas City Royals in the bottom of the 8th to come back from a 5-3 deficit, highlighted by an Aaron Judge Grand Slam that put the game away.

The 8-run bludgeoning came after a rain delay in the top of the 8th, the Yanks down 5-3 and things not looking good. But the rain delay apparently refreshed them — plus the fact that KC put in Scott Barlow to pitch, who had yielded the game-winning homer to Aaron Judge the night before.

Judge hit a 2-run homer earlier in the game to give Gerrit Cole a 3-0 lead. But after 2 outs and nobody on in the 5th, Cole surrendered 5 straight hits and 5 runs, highlighted by a 3-run bomb by Salvador Perez, with rain coming down.

And Judge leaped over the fence to rob KC of a homerun in the 1st inning. Just another night for Judge in this historic MVP season he is having.

On a rainy, warm summer July Friday night in the Bronx.

“I wish I could have a phone on the bench just like the fans, who take a video of every one of his at bats,” said Gerrit Cole of Judge afterwards.

NY is now 68-33, back to 12.5 games in 1st over Toronto, 14.5 over Tampa, 16.5 over Baltimore, and 18 over the now last-place Red Sox.

1. Judge Superman

Aaron Judge is the quintessential 5-tool player and should have won a Gold Glove already in right field, especially last year. He showed off his defense in the 1st inning by leaping over the right field wall with full extension on his 6’7 frame to rob MJ Melendez of a homerun.

2. Rizzo & Judge Bombs Give NY 3-0 Lead

Anthony Rizzo put the Yanks on top 1-0 in the bottom of the 1st with a 422-foot bomb to center off Royals’ starter Kris Bubic.

And Aaron Judge made it 3-0 in the 3rd with a 440-foot 2-run BOMB to left after a DJ LeMahieu walk.

3. Cole Loses It in the Rain in the 5th

And so Gerrit Cole was cruising in the 5th with a 3-0 lead, with light rain coming down and a lot more projected in the forecast and John Sterling telling Suzyn Waldman on the radio that 1 more out and it would be an official ballgame.

By the time Cole got that out, KC had the lead and was hoping for the rain-shortened game.

Consecutive singles after 2 were out put 1st and 2nd — but Cole got Melendez to ground out to end the inning. No — KC challenged the play at 1st, and Cole stayed on the field. The challenge was successful, Melendez was ruled safe — and the bases were loaded with 2 outs.

Cole allowed a big 2-RBI double to Whit Merrifield JUST over the glove of a leaping Anthony Rizzo at 1st — and then the 3-run homer to Salvador Perez. A stunning turn of events. KC 5 NY 3.

“Wasn’t able to get the ball off the bat, obviously,” said Cole of the 5th after the game. “And then running back to the top with Merrifield. Pitch off the corner; I’m going for a freeze; he’s obviously swinging. And he’s able to — and we’ve seen that time and time again in something called the World Series against my team as well — he’s able to put that ball into right field. Probably the wrong pitch there because we were expecting a take.”

Against Salvador, Cole said, “We thought we had room up and in; it’s just my fault — we had leverage there; we didn’t have to throw a strike. So ultimately we threw a strike and Salvy put an incredible swing on it and we lost the lead. Just have to pick better pitches and execute better pitches.”

“It was a tough night to field the ball,” added Cole. It was obviously very wet. There were challenges on both sides on interior defense.”

Cole rebounded in the 6th for a shutout inning — finishing with 6 innings, 7 hits (5 in the 5th), 5 runs, 9 K’s, 0 walks. It happens.

4. Chapman and Abreu Good

And then you turned around and pointed the fickle finger of blame at the Yankee offense — who couldn’t score in the 5th, 6th, and 7th — and had only scored 3 runs into the 8th.

At least Aroldis Chapman pitched good — a 1-2-3 7th inning.

And then as the 8th inning was about to start — the rains became heavier and the game was halted.

After the rain came Albert Abreu — who was on Texas and long gone a month ago and now has become the fulcrum of the Yankee bullpen. He pitched a shutout 8th.

5. Judge Grand-Slam Highlights 8-Run 8th

And so it was to the bottom of the 8th — the Yankees running out of time and things not looking good.

Barlow came in to pitch and he struck out first batter Aaron Judge, who had hit the game winner off him in the bottom of the 9th the night before in the 1-0 NY win.

But then  Anthony Rizzo reached on an infield single, and Gleyber Torres singled to center.

The Double Play that Wasn’t

With 1 out and 2 on, Josh Donaldson hit a double-play grounder that should have been the end of the inning — but shortstop Eduardo Garcia made a throwing error (wet infield remember) to load the bases. A key play.

Andrew Benintendi hit a grounder to 1st that Nick Prado dove for and smothered but there was nowhere for him to throw it to so a run scored — Benintendi’s first hit as a Yank. KC 5 NY 4.

Aaron Hicks then worked a HUGE walk to force in a run and tie the game 5-5.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa followed by rapping a single to left for a 6-5 Yankee lead.

Jose Trevino did his job — hitting a dribbler groundout to score a run and make it 7-5 NY.

Barlow was removed, replaced with Jackson Kowar. He walked DJ LeMahieu, which brought up Aaron Judge with the bases loaded.

And he hit the Grand Slam to opposite field right, putting the game away, and setting off pandemonium in the Bronx. NY 11 KC 5.

Wandy Peralta pitched a shutout 9th for the old ballgame.

The Boxscore



1 Comment

  1. Judge is the MVP. He’s won so many games for the Yankees. I love him so much.
    Ohtani pitches but he hasn’t put up offensive numbers like Judge. Angels keep losing. He’s in trade rumors! How can he be MVP?

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