📌 Join the BPCrew Chapter in your city and meet up with more Yankees fans! 👉 CLICK HERE

Aaron Judge named Yankees’ Opening Day right fielder

The Yankees have officially penciled right fielder Aaron Judge into the opening day lineup against the Rays. This is an announcement that many Yankee fans believed should have came much earlier, but better late than never I suppose.

Before Spring Training, Yankee’s owner Hal Steinbrenner stated that he expected Judge to be the every day right fielder in 2017. With three days left in pre-season play, the 24-year-old rookie is hitting .345 with three homers and six RBIs. He’s also mixed in a stolen base for good measure. More importantly, Judge has made some improvements on lowering his strike out rate. He has punched out 13 times in 58 at bats this spring, meriting a 22% strikeout rate. Last season, he K’ed in 50% of his major league at-bats.

Judge has been competing with fellow outfielder Aaron Hicks all spring for the starting job in right field. While Judge has had the upper hand, management has hesitated to give him the job. Hicks has hit .264 with three home runs and seven RBIs so far; he has also shown to perform better while getting consistent at bats. Not only was there a chance of Judge losing the starting job, but there were reports that he was going to start the year in the minors. That is not the case anymore.

Judge has won the competition for right field and Hicks will slide back into the fourth outfielder role that he had filled last year. Girardi is putting the Yankees #4 prospect into the lineup with confidence that his success in the spring will translate into the regular season. Look for Judge to retain this job as long as he continues to make solid contact and keeps his strike out rate relatively low. I’m sure Yankees fans also wouldn’t mind seeing what Judge can do with a full year at Yankee Stadium.