Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Photo: Getty Images
I know it's early, but Aaron Judge is doing big things...and that inspires some pretty big dreams and some may even say fantasies. April's American League Rookie of the Month award was just the beginning.

It's amazing how the last week of Spring Training we weren't even sure if Judge was going to be on the big league roster. Now here we are at the end of May watching Judge sit at or near the top of the leader boards in several categories including runs scored and home runs, you can see more HERE.

(May 16, 2017 - Source: Jamie Squire/Getty Images North America)
The leader board looks impressive and when you are included on it with other big names like Mike Trout, Corey Dickerson and Evan Longoria. You have to be doing a lot of things right when you are in company with veteran hitters like that and when you look at Judge now compared to 2016 you can see that a lot has changed.

(May 13, 2017 - Source: Elsa/Getty Images North America)
Watching Judge it is easy to see that he has made a lot of adjustments to his swing. The strikeouts are down from 50% to 30% and he is not chasing pitches outside of the strike zone. He spent time in the off season working with hitting coaches Alan Cockrell and Marcus Thames and watched video of some of his favorite hitters like Miguel Cabrera and Giancarlo Stanton. Judge is very much a student of the game....and all of that hard work is paying off.

It's early but I can't even stop thinking about the great possibilities that could be ahead for Judge. Last year we had hopes that Gary Sanchez would be the 9th Yankee to become Rookie of the Year after Derek Jeter, Dave Righetti, Thurman Munson, Stan Bahnsen, Tom Tresh, Tony Kubek, Gil McDougald, and Bob Grim. This year I have high hopes for Judge.

The possibilities for Judge are endless but at the rate Judge is going my mind is running on all four cylinders and I know I am not alone. There's already talk out there of Judge and his 15 home runs playing in the home run derby this year and playing as a starter on the All Star team. It's fun to buy into the hype. We've all been waiting for this for so long. Maybe it goes even beyond a Rookie of the Year award.

(May 20, 2017 - Source: Brian Blanco/Getty Images North America)
The bigger fantasy here would be the possibility of Judge as both Rookie of the Year AND Most Valuable Player something that has only been done twice by Fred Lynn of the Red Sox in 1975 and Ichiro Suzuki of the Mariners back in 2001. Could it happen?

It's early....and it's definitely a big fantasy but there's nothing wrong with thinking big, right? After all,  the possibilities with this team are endless.

--Jeana Bellezza
BYB Managing Editor
Follow me on Twitter: @NYPrincessJ

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