He’s Injury Prone
Yes, taking a pitch on the wrist is not exactly his fault, but that makes all four seasons of his career where he’s been dogged by injury.
His rookie season was cut short by a lat injury. He played less than 30 games after getting called up in July (I was there, and yes, the home run was THAT majestic). They shut him down to help preserve him.
Yes, he played a full season in 2017. But he was bothered by injury most of the second half of the season. His offense took a nosedive after June, and he needed to remove debris from his throwing shoulder surgically.
2018, yes, the wrist, as mentioned earlier.
Then he missed 60 games due to ANOTHER lat injury in 2019.
Our Fragile Outfield
I’ve documented Hick’s injury history. Giancarlo Stanton has been hampered by various soft muscle injuries throughout his career, due to his size and physiology. Aaron Judge is taller than Stanton and has similar physiology to Stanton. Think about it… all of our outfielders last year played just barely half a season each, paving the way for Brett Gardner’s offensive juggernaut of a season.
We saw last year that we can get by without Stanton, even though he improves our lineup twenty fold. Someone will replace Hicks regularly throughout his current 7-year contract. We won’t miss him as much as others think we will. But Judge needs to stay healthy for 120+ games a season. He can be better than Mike Trout. But he hasn’t been able to prove just what he’s completely capable of yet. What if that 2017 season is the best we ever see of Judge. It’s too much of a risk.
The New York Yankees’ top priority for 2020 is to ensure Aaron Judge stays healthy for an entire season.