Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge has frightening size and a menacing swing, but that isn’t news.
What has left players, coaches, and fans wondering, however, is how far the 24-year-old rookie could hit a baseball. In the major leagues, there’s only one contest that can truly determine that.
So, what would Judge–who stands 6-foot-7 at 282 pounds–think of participating in this summer’s Home Run Derby at Marlins Park if given the invite?
“The Home Run Derby is awesome,” Judge told Randy Miller of NJ.com Tuesday. “It’s a fun event to watch and I’d probably do it if they asked me. I’ve been in them before and I just take my normal swing that I do in batting practice and hopefully it would all work out. I’d just go out there and have fun. I wouldn’t change anything. But it would be a fun thing to do.”
Over the past few seasons, a large chunk of major league sluggers have shied away from participating in the Home Run Derby, as some players fear that their swing and plate approach could be damaged. But Judge isn’t worried, according to Miller, and with good reason. As a sophomore at Fresno State in 2012, Judge participated in the College Home Run Derby, and to say the least, his decision to participate was worth the while.
“I won. And I had a blast there, an absolute blast,” Judge told Miller. “I didn’t really want to go because I had four home runs that year and the guys that I was going up against had 20-to-25. I was like, ‘I don’t know why you guys are asking me to be here,’ but I talked it over with my parents and there were like, ‘Why don’t you just and have a good time and anything can happen?'”
On Wednesday night against the White Sox, Judge hit his fifth home run on the year, surpassing his total of four homers that came in 2016.