You may have heard the term, all rise” from Yankee fans. That’s because all-star outfielder Aaron Judge is having a career year where he could break the AL Home Run record, the triple crown, and a record-setting contract in the offseason.
However, before we get to the future, we must see how we got to this moment. Here is the evolution of Aaron Judge.
On the day he was born, Aaron was adopted by Patty and Wayne Judge. Both worked as teachers in Linden, California. In a quote to Newsday, Judge stated, “Some kids grow in their mom’s stomach; I grew in my mom’s heart… She’s always shown me love and compassion ever since I was a little baby.” For this reason, he explains, “I’ve never needed to think differently or wonder about anything.” Judge also grew up a San Francisco Giants fan.
Judge went to Linden High school, where he was a three-sport star. He played as a pitcher and first baseman for the baseball team, a wide receiver for the football team, and a center for the basketball team.
While in high school, colleges such as Notre Dame, and UCLA recruited Judge to play tight end in football. He elected to play baseball instead. The Oakland Athletics selected him in the 31st round of the 2010 MLB draft, but he chose to go to college instead.
In 2011, Judge chose to enroll at California State University and play for the Fresno State Bulldogs. Judge was named to the all-conference team in all three of his seasons for the Bulldogs. In his junior year, Judge led the Bulldogs in home runs, doubles, and runs batted in.
The New York Yankees drafted Judge in the first round of the 2013 MLB draft with the 32nd overall selection.
In 2015, the Yankees invited Judge to spring training for a non-roster spot. Judge batted .284/.350/.510 (5th in the league) with 12 home runs (tied for 9th) in 63 games for Trenton Thunder. The Yankees promoted Judge to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders of the Class AAA International League in June. He was chosen to represent the Yankees at the 2015 All-Star Futures Game.
On August 13, 2016, Judge made his debut against the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. In his first MLB at-bat, Judge hit a home run. He would also go on to homer in his second MLB game.
On opening day of 2017, the Yankees named Judge their starting right field. In this same year, Judge was unanimously voted as the American League Rookie of the Year. He was also second in the voting for the 2017 American League Most Valuable Player Award.
Judge made his first career start at center field in the majors’ on March 31, 2018. He was the tallest player ever to play in that position.
On July 9th, 2021, Judge got his 500th hit against the Houston Astros. He became the second fastest Yankee to 500 hits and 100 home runs
Unfortunately, Judge and the Yankees couldn’t come to an agreement for a long-term deal before the 2022 season began. The team offered Judge $17 million in arbitration and a $213.5 million, seven-year extension, and he said no. Judge then signed a year, $19 million contract on June 24th.
With Judge’s home run during a game against the Los Angeles Angels on August 29th, he became only the tenth player in Major League Baseball history to record multiple 50 home run seasons.
Judge hit his 55th home run during the first game of a doubleheader against the Minnesota Twins on September 7th. He became the fourth player in MLB history to hit 55-plus home runs and steal 15-plus bases in a single season.
Judge hit his 61st home run in a game against Toronto Blue Jays on September 28. This tied Roger Maris for the most home runs in a single season in American League history.