In echoes of DJ LeMahieu’s decision last off-season, New York Yankees‘ heavy-hitter Aaron Judge has chosen the path of rehabilitation for his toe over the upcoming off-season. Bryan Hoch, from MLB.com, reveals that Judge’s inclination towards rehab instead of surgery seeks a more integrated healing process, even though surgery might have directly addressed the issue.
Season Recap: The Impact of Judge’s Absence
Despite featuring in 102 games this season, Judge will sit out during Tuesday’s clash with the Toronto Blue Jays. Yankees’ manager Aaron Boone intends to grant Judge an extra day’s rest, especially after a grueling, rain-soaked series against the Arizona Diamondbacks at their home ground, the Bronx.
This season saw Judge flashing his brilliance with a .266 batting average, .402 OBP, 35 homers, 71 RBIs, and a 172 wRC+. His stats further highlight a 28.6% strikeout rate and an 18.9% walk rate. Undoubtedly, Judge’s prowess positions him as a frontrunner in many of the Yankees’ offensive categories. Yet, the Yankees felt the void created by his intermittent absences, which took a toll on their chances at the playoffs.
The ripple effects of his absence underscored a glaring issue: the Yankees’ roster’s inadequate depth couldn’t effectively counterbalance the void left by Judge’s absence.
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Yankees Lessons for the Future
General Manager Brian Cashman distilled a crucial insight from this experience: the Yankees’ vibrancy diminishes without the formidable presence of Judge. Looking ahead to the 2024 season, there’s an unmistakable emphasis on augmenting the team’s lineup with quality hitters.
On the brighter side, insiders indicate that Judge’s toe rehabilitation is expected to be uncomplicated, allowing him enough time to regain his peak form and resume his pivotal role for the next season.