Aaron Judge = Superman. NY Yankees 6 LA Dodgers 3

Aaron Judge hit his 19th homerun of the year and made a spectacular catch in right field while busting through the outfield fence to lead the Yankees to the 6-3 victory over the Dodgers in Los Angeles, in a nationally televised game on a Saturday night.

Judge looked every bit the man of steel — more powerful than a locomotive; able to leap tall buildings in a single bound; bend steel in his bare hands.

Judge’s superhero sidekicks were Jake Bauers, playing a young Jimmy Olsen, who hit two 2-run homers — and Gerrit Cole, playing the Noel Neil version of Lois Lane of the 1950’s series, with 6 strong, aggressive innings to run his record to 7-0 2.82, before leaving due to cramps.

It was a 5-3 game with a runner on and nobody out in the bottom of the 8th when Judge made his spectacular catch, robbing J.D. Martinez of an extra base hit and the Dodgers of a possible game-tying rally.

Oswaldo Cabrera — who just returned from being sent to AAA on Friday, and was inserted into the game to replace Bauers for defense — hit an insurance homer in the 9th, making manager Aaron Boone look like Perry White — pulling the right moves with the help of Superman and serendipity.

“He’s amazing,” said Cole about Judge. “There’s some great players in this series; couple of Hall of Famers on the other side as well. He’s just on another level. Gosh what a blessing to have him on my team.”

“We know who is that guy,” said Oswaldo Cabrera afterwards. “We know he is from another planet.”

NY improves to 35-25, 6 games back of Tampa and 2 behind Baltimore. LA drops to 35-24, still tied with Arizona for the NL’s best record.

1. Lefty Bauers Two 2-Run Homers

Despite Brian Cashman seeing the light in recent years on the need for the Yankees to have more lefty batters to take advantage of the short porch in Yankee Stadium — NY is still a predominantly right-handed lineup.

NY has brought in Jake Bauers, Willie Calhoun, and Franchy Cordero to add to Anthony Rizzo — but the departure of switch hitter Aaron Hicks and recent demotion of switch hitter Oswaldo Cabrera has further weakened NY’s lefty offerings. Cordero was sent down to AAA on Thursday but put back on the roster on Friday when Greg Allen was put on the Injured List. That meant Oswaldo had to fly to Newark from Seattle, where the Yankee team was, and then fly back to meet the team in LA.

Bauers was on the bubble himself only a few days ago — with many expecting him to be sent down when Josh Donaldson came back. But Bauers had a couple of terrific games to hold onto his position.

Bauers was playing left in this game and he pounced on righty starter Michael Grove in the top of the 2nd. With 1 out DJ LeMahieu tripled off the wall, and then Bauers hit a 414-foot homer to right to make it 2-0 NY.

Lefty Anthony Rizzo led off the 4th with a single, and 2 batters later, Jake Bauers hit another bomb — a 407-foot homer to right center. NY 4 LA 1.

Bauers had his family at the game, making it extra special for him. Afterwards he attributed his success this season to the Yankee coaching staff in AAA changing his batting approach. “Ever since I got traded here last year, it’s been a steady uptrend in terms of how I feel at the plate, and I owe it all to the Yankees, the Yankee hitting philosophy. and the coaches here,” said Bauers afterwards. “I was hitting a buck 30 in AAA, feeling like I might be at the end of my career. I didn’t know if I would ever be back in the big leagues — so when I got traded here I said, ‘whatever you guys want me to do I’ll do’ so all credit goes to them.”

“It’s been a lot of stuff over the past year that has really helped,” Bauers explained. “Mainly getting my bat path flatter through the zone; it gives me a bigger margin of error in terms of if I’m on time or not. I’m not so much in and out of the zone — I’m flatter through it, and making contact more.”

2. Judge = More Powerful than a Locomotive

Aaron Judge made it 5-1 in the top of the 6th by yanking one into the left field seats — his American League leading 19th homerun of the season.

3. Cole Aggressive and Efficient

Gerrit Cole meanwhile was aggressive and efficient — something he had said he was aiming to do. He allowed a crazy run in the 2nd, when with 2 outs he hit Jason Heyward with a pitch, and allowed a little pop fly to left by David Peralta that Bauers, Donaldson, and Anthony Volpe converged on, but couldn’t get to — the ball landing just barely in fair territory, resulting in an RBI double.

Otherwise Cole was dominant, and was only at 80 pitches through 6 innings of 4-hit ball when manager Aaron Boone unexpectedly yanked him — bringing in Wandy Peralta to pitch the 7th with a couple of Dodger lefties due up. It was announced later during the national broadcast that Cole was dealing with cramping issues.

“One of those days; tough work; tough lineup; making me execute a lot of pitches,” said Gerrit Cole afterwards about the cramping which he said was in his legs.

4. King Bails Wandy Out

So in came Wandy Peralta to start the 7th. Manager Aaron Boone also replaced Jake Bauers in left with Oswaldo Cabrera for defense.

Wandy allowed a leadoff single to Chris Taylor, then a single down the line in left by Miguel Vargas that hugged the outfield wall going past Cabrera trying to field the weird bounce. It went for a triple and a run.

Wandy then walked a batter and was gone as Yankee Twitter was HOWLING at Boone for having taken out Cole after 80 pitches — not knowing yet it was due to Cole’s cramping.

Michael King allowed another RBI single and it was 5-3 with nobody out and a runner on and Yankee Twitter continued to howl — until King got lineout, lineout, strikeout to end the inning without further scoring.

5. Judge = Able to Bend Steel in His Bare Hands

And then came the 8th. King struck out Max Muncy on a ball in the dirt to start the inning but when Jose Trevino threw the ball to 1st, it hit Muncy in the back — so he was on.

J.D. Martinez then hit the drive to right and Judge made like Superman again — making the spectacular catch and smashing through the steel gate.

6. Oswaldo HR = Serendipity

And then serendipity — with 2 outs in the 9th, Oswaldo Cabrera gave the Yanks a HUGE Insurance run with a homer to left to make it a 6-3 game. Oswaldo whom Boone had put into the game to replace Jake Bauers. Oswaldo who had been demoted on Thursday only to be put back on the team on Friday, flying from Seattle to Newark Airport and then flying back out to LA.

“I feel so happy when they called me back,” said Oswaldo afterwards.

7. Holmes the Save

Oswaldo’s insurance run helped defray agita as Clay Holmes got the first 2 outs of the 9th but then walked Mookie Betts to bring up power-hitting Freddie Freeman.

Freeman lined out to Anthony Volpe at shortstop for the old ballgame.


It was noted by several observers on Yankee Twitter that Judge had recently broken the maple leaf sign in Toronto, and now the steel gate in LA.

FrankiesTwoLoud hit a homer with his tweet, with a supposition of why Judge points to right center after hitting homers.

After the game, Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal interviewed Judge and Judge looked every bit the Man of Steel, but bigger.

Further evidence came out after the game, as Judge told the media he had stubbed his toe on the play and it hurt. We had seen this before.

The Boxscore


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