Yankees’ Aaron Judge wins AL Player of The Month award

Jun 2, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; New York Yankees center fielder Aaron Judge (99) jogs to first base after drawing a walk against the San Francisco Giants during the third inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

As expected, New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge left the month of May with more hardware, as he was announced on Monday as the winner of the American League Player of The Month award for May.

Aaron Judge wins Player of the Month

After struggling through the early portion of the season, Judge had arguably the best month of his illustrious career in May. In 28 games, Judge put up video game numbers, hitting .370 with 14 home runs, 25 RBIs, a .924 slugging percentage, and an OPS of 1.415. Those 14 home runs are the second most Judge has ever hit in a single calendar month, with his most being 15 in September 2017.

He has since overtaken the league lead in home runs with 21 on the season, a 56-home-run pace for the full season. He also leads all of baseball in a number of categories, including SLG, OPS, walks, wRC+, and WAR. Judge also leads the AL in doubles with 18.

Judge hit 12 doubles in the month of May, the most in MLB in that span. His 26 extra-base hits also led all of baseball, and are also the most he has ever hit in a single month for his career.

Judge has re-established himself as the best hitter in baseball

Jun 1, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge (99) hits a single against the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: Robert Edwards-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 1, 2024; San Francisco, California, USA; New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge (99) hits a single against the San Francisco Giants during the eighth inning at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: Robert Edwards-USA TODAY Sports

Judge is no stranger to winning this award, as it is the seventh time in his career that he has won a Player of The Month award, though this one might be the most memorable. If he continues this historic pace, he could be well on his way to winning his second MVP award, though it is still too early in the season to project end-of-season awards. He has re-established himself as the game’s best hitter, and by a wide margin as well.

Judge’s numbers in May were so absurd that teammate Alex Verdugo compared it to a full regular season for him, jokingly commenting “That’s my season” during the Yankees’ west coast trip this past week. Verdugo elaborated further and gave high praise to his superstar teammate.

“He’s special, he really is. He’s a captain for a reason, he got paid what he did for a reason. He goes about everything he does the right way, and guys love him. Whether you’re on his team, or the opposing team, you just love this guy,” said Verdugo (h/t YES Network).

The Yankees are the best team in MLB on both sides of the ball

MLB: New York Yankees at Milwaukee Brewers, aaron judge
Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Judge wasn’t the only Yankee to win a monthly award for May, as pitcher Luis Gil won both the AL Rookie of The Month and AL Pitcher of The Month awards. It is the first time since July 2019 that a pair of MLB teammates won the pitching and hitting monthly awards, when Gerrit Cole and Yuli Gurriel did it while playing for the Houston Astros (h/t Talkin’ Yanks).

This Yankees team is clicking on all cylinders, which has led many to believe this can be the year they finally end the 15-year World Series drought. They currently have the best record in baseball, the league’s best one-two punch in Judge and Juan Soto, and the best pitching staff in MLB. There’s still lots of season left to be played, but May showed just how good they can be when their stars are on their A-game.

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