Alex Rodriguez thinks hitting Aaron Judge in first place is “ridiculous,” and says the Yankees need to make a change “immediately.”
The former Yankees player, now a studio analyst at Fox, said Friday night that Judge needs better protection in the squad. Judge, who held the MLS record with 62 home runs in the regular season, is 0-for-8 with seven strokes in the Yank division in the first two AL Division Series games against The Guardians.
“As far as Aaron Judge is concerned, this is a great baseball game,” A-Rod said during Fox’s post-game presentation alongside Kevin Burkhardt, Hall of Famers Frank Thomas and David Ortiz. “You can’t let your best player, your best hitter, hit first. Babe Ruth didn’t do that. Barry Bonds didn’t. Frank didn’t. That guy [Ortiz] You don’t. I did not do that. does not exist. The reason is that you want protection [him]. Like, play chess, like a queen on a chessboard.
“You want to put the best hitters up front, the best hitters in the back, protection. The Yankees put the worst hitters – the eighth and ninth hitter – and put a tremendous amount of pressure. You want him to come in the first game and be very comfortable, watch 12 or 14 pitches like you’re used to. [Derek] Jeter and [Johnny] Damon and [Mark] Teixeira, perhaps a homer popped out of three runs. It’s ridiculous for this guy to hit the lead, and that’s wrong. I don’t know who does it [Aaron] Bon O [Brian] Cashman, but someone should change that immediately.”
With many regulars sidelined due to injuries, Boone began using Judge for the top spot in September. The move also cemented a 99th appearance on the board as he was chasing Roger Maris’ league and franchise record of 61.
The judge settled 13 of his 62 buddies in 34 starts as a Yankees bat, with 47 coming in 112 games from the No. 2 slot and two in seven games while finishing third in the standings. The four-time All-Star star hasn’t fought with a base runner in any of his nine games (one walk) in the first two ALDS games entering Game 3 Saturday night in Cleveland.
“The Yankees have all the pressure on them. The Guardians have no pressure,” Rodriguez said of the series. “They have the lowest salaries. They have the smallest team. They have a wonderful manager at Tito Francona. And now they go to Cleveland and say, “Guess what? 1-1, anything can happen.”
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