Saturday, July 9, 2022

Aaron Judge's "sore lower body" makes the case for finding a centerfielder

Aaron Judge sat out Thursday night due to a "sore lower body." Pardon me, because I certainly understand "sore," and I can visualize "lower body," but I have no clue how to process those three words together, other than to say... his legs must hurt. 

So he rested... in Fenway... a series opener... against our rivals...

His legs hurt. 

Now, I do not doubt Judge - not for one moment. In fact, sore legs is exactly what happens when you play a 270-pound colossus in CF for most of a month. It's been wondrous seeing Judge the Giant roam gap to gap and firing strikes to each base. In a short series, he's our Mickey, our Bernie, our Joe. For years, we've watched a Gold Glove-caliber RF, and this season, he's outdone himself... in center! 

It's always fun, 'til someone gets hurt. 

And Judge's legs hurt. 

Friday night, as Judge went 0-5 (when has that happened lately?) Estevan Florial in Scranton hit his 11th HR of the season, his 6th in the last 15 days. Over that stretch, he's hitting .375. 

On almost any other team, Florial could expect a call up to the majors or a trade. It seems batty to simply strand him at Triple A, although that's what's happened to Miguel Andujar (hitting .385 over the last two weeks.)

Same with Tim Locastro, who didn't play last night for Scranton. Over the last two weeks, he's hitting .289 with two SBs. Early in the season, Locastro became a great late-inning Yankee weapon, a base-stealer who can spell any OF defensively. He too waits for the call.   

So... Judge's legs hurt, eh? It's time to recognize that - yeah, he can play CF (hell, he can probably play NBA power forward), but it's not a good idea. Judge needs to stay in RF and occasionally DH. We need a full season from our best player - and a centerfielder with fresh legs. 

21 comments:

Publius said...

Hicks is kinda sorta hitting.

el duque said...

I wonder if Hicks' problems have been related to the wear and tear of playing CF. He's another big boy, reaching the age when corner OF looks more suitable.

DickAllen said...


Today's mantra:

Estevan...Miggy...Estevan...Miggy...Estevan...Miggy...Estevan...Miggy...

Carl J. Weitz said...

Jettison Gallows and a spot opens for someone better. And there is no better time for Cashman to trade Florial as he will never have a chance to make the team on a permanent basis.

JM said...

I honestly don't understand why Judge's size means he can't play center because of the wear and tear on his legs. Yeah, he's really big and weighs a lot. But does he suffer from some kind of genetic disorder like giantism? I don't think so. So why, with a larger body that has the appropriate musculature and tendons in place, does he differ from a guy who's six feet and weighs 210 or something? It's all proportional. Unless his size comes with a genetic defect that doesn't allow him the same kind of bodily support that a smaller outfielder has.

He is big, but he doesn't seem freakish. And if a guy his size can't play center because it's too taxing for his legs, why do guys his size and larger play in the NBA, running up and down the court for a couple hours practically nonstop? Is wood more forgiving than turf? Again, I don't think so but I don't really know. Is it just a matter of his proportionately huge joints and connective tissues not having the resilience to support his frame like with other people?

Is there a doctor in the house? I could use an explanation.

Doug K. said...

I'm on board with getting a CF and moving Judge back to right.

JM -

You make a good point. Maybe the extra ground a CF covers... but really how often? I guess he has to run over to back up balls to RF AND LF. But you'd think a pro athlete could do that easily. Basketball players run around constantly. Football wide receivers run their routes whether they get the ball or not and get POUNDED when they do.

It really doesn't make a lot of sense.

Local Bargain Jerk said...


Meanwhile, I'd like to lodge a formal complaint that we need to wait until 7:15 tonight to watch the game.

On Fox.

It would have been nice to do some chores today with the game on in the background but Noooooo.

Stupid Red Sox.

Stupid MLB.

Grrrr.

borntorun999 said...

TBH, if we do re-sign Judge, ultimately he will play 1B.

Publius said...

Ultimately, Judge will DH, hit .220, 27 HRs, 68 RBIs, .710 OPS, 185 Ks. But that's a few years off yet.

Mildred Lopez said...


JM...

That's a great point. Judge is a just little bigger and three years younger than Rob Gronkowski. Never understood the fragility of baseball players.

AboveAverage said...

Judge and his aching gastrocnemius muscles would be lousy at first base.

Although apparently not suffering from giantism (only his pituitary gland knows for sure) - each human is different so even as a professional athlete - perhaps given his size and how his body manages it's own wear and tear - Judge and the Yunkee$ braintrust will need to arrive upon a routine that will provide what his body needs to keep him on the field.

The intelligent approach is not to ignore/deny what your body is telling you - but to listen and work with it to maximize performance.

Time for more coffee . . . .


borntorun999 said...

Judge is not suffering from gigantism. He is a large man. I’m a big guy myself (but not Judgian) and I’ve been 6’6 ever since I was 14. There was some concern at the time, but in those prehistoric days not everything was seen as a health emergency. They just handed you a basketball. Point is, Humanity embraces enormous variety. Judge stands out (no pun intended) because most elite athletes of his size gravitate to sports other than baseball. It is because of his athleticism that he should have no trouble moving to 1B as he ages, before the inevitable stint at DH. Yes, once he hits say, 34 or 35, his production will plummet. Also, Stanton’s contract runs through 2027 when Judge turns 35. Might be a little crowded at that DH spot.

HoraceClarke66 said...

Whether Judge should be in first or not—and I have no idea if he suffers from gigantism or titanism, or HEY LADY!—the salient point is that we need Florial and Miggy up on the big team.

It's all very nice that we're playing a team against which hitting a routine pop-up can cause any amount of havoc, and it sure is amusing/amazing watching Joey Gallo manage to run into an out on an inside-the-park home run, this is a guy we don't have room for.

Estevan...Miggy...Estevan...Miggy...

borntorun999 said...

HC, we need to clear 2 roster spots.
Gallo + Hicks?

It all circles back to the same issue, Money.

Everyone assumes we’ll trade for another OF-er, but what if the best solution
Is just a bumpy Uber ride away?

Alphonso said...

His sore lower body, at age 30, is another reason not to sign him for 10 years and $400 million, no matter how good he has been this year.

EDB said...

Or maybe giving Florial a 100 at bats, since the Yankees are so far up in The A.L. East. Florial may have finally found himself. Genius CashmaN WOULD RATHER HAVE jOEY k. gALLO IN THE LINEUP.

Kevin said...

Just maybe Cashman is letting Florial and Miggy show some prolonged success at AAA to build trade value? They had zero value a couple of months ago. Locastro, yes, bring him up. Who do you send down?

HoraceClarke66 said...

So, he just walks, Alphonso? I say no. I can see an argument to HAVE traded him—but once he WASN'T traded, we gotta keep him.

So the last few years of his contract will be a disappointment. Isn't that almost always the case in long-term deals? So he can spend the last few years DHing or playing 1B.

The problem with the Yankees has not been signing guys long-term who gradually decline. It's been signing guys long-term who were never all that good or were already injured.

TheWinWarblist said...

Hicks is hitting over the last several starts. Maybe he still recovering from the injury. Who knows? But he's not an automatic out any more.

TheWinWarblist said...

Now IL Gallo and give AnDU or Florial his spot.

DickAllen said...


A few random thoughts:

Getting Sunday and Lasagna back will take the load off the back end of the bullpen. Those guys must be tired.

A friend suggested today that The Intern might consider offering Judge a 4-year, 150MM deal. Harold would lose his lunch.

I’m deeply sorry for having suggested, however jocularly, that El Chapo pitch the ninth. That one’s on me. Mea maxima culpa.

And last, but not least, I’d be happy to drive Gallo to Scranton gratis. The dope was actually laughing after he got tagged out at the plate on one of the ugliest slides in memory. Schmuck. And bring Miggy and Estevan back to the Bronx.

And, as Radar would say: “That is all.”