Aaron Judge
Judge with the New York Yankees in 2018
New York Yankees – No. 99
Born: (1992-04-26) April 26, 1992 (age 32)
Sacramento, California, U.S.
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
MLB debut
August 13, 2016, for the New York Yankees
MLB statistics
(through July 9, 2024)
Batting average.284
Home runs289
Runs batted in655
Career highlights and awards

Aaron James Judge (born April 26, 1992) is an American professional baseball outfielder for the New York Yankees of Major League Baseball (MLB). A six-time MLB All-Star, Judge was unanimously selected as the American League (AL) Rookie of the Year in 2017 and finished second in voting for the AL Most Valuable Player Award that year.[1] In 2022, he set the AL record for most home runs in a season with 62, breaking the 61-year-old record held by Roger Maris, and won the AL Most Valuable Player Award.[2] Judge stands 6 feet 7 inches (2.01 m) tall and weighs 282 pounds (128 kg), making him one of the largest and tallest players in MLB.[3]

Judge played college baseball for the Fresno State Bulldogs, and the Yankees selected him with the 32nd pick in the first round of the 2013 MLB draft. After making his MLB debut in 2016 and hitting a home run in his first major league at bat, Judge went on to have a record-breaking rookie season in 2017. He was named an All-Star, won the Home Run Derby (the first MLB rookie to do so), and hit 52 home runs (the second most by a rookie in MLB history). After the 2022 season, he re-signed with the Yankees on a nine-year, $360 million contract and was subsequently named the team's captain.

Early life

Judge was born in Sacramento, California,[4] and he was adopted the day after he was born by Patty and Wayne Judge, who both worked as teachers in Linden, California.[5] He and his older brother John were both adopted.[6] Judge is biracial.[7] Judge was a San Francisco Giants fan.[8]

Judge attended 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 as a center for the basketball team. He set a school record for touchdowns (17) in football and led the basketball team in points per game (18.2). In baseball, he was part of the Linden High School team that made the California Interscholastic Federation Division III playoffs.[9] Judge graduated from Linden High in 2010.[10]

College career

Various colleges recruited Judge to play tight end in football, including Notre Dame, Stanford, and UCLA, but he preferred baseball. The Oakland Athletics selected him in the 31st round of the 2010 MLB draft. Still, he opted to enroll at California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) to play for the Fresno State Bulldogs baseball team in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC).[11] In 2011, Judge was part of a Fresno State team that shared the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) regular season title, won the WAC Tournament, and qualified for the 2011 NCAA Division I baseball tournament.[12][13] Louisville Slugger named him a Freshman All-American.[5] He won the 2012 TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby.[14] He played collegiate summer baseball for the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod Baseball League in the summer of 2012.[15] In his junior year, Judge led the Bulldogs in home runs, doubles, and runs batted in (RBIs).[16] Judge was named to the all-conference team in all three of his seasons for the Bulldogs—in the WAC in his first two seasons, and the Mountain West Conference (MW) as a junior (the Bulldogs joined the MW in July 2012, between his sophomore and junior seasons).[16]

Professional career

Draft and minor leagues

Judge during Yankees' spring training in 2015

The Yankees drafted Judge in the first round of the 2013 MLB draft with the 32nd overall selection,[17][18][19] a pick the team received as compensation after losing Nick Swisher in free agency.[20] Judge signed with the Yankees and received a $1.8 million signing bonus.[21] He tore a quadriceps femoris muscle while participating in a base running drill, which kept him out of the 2013 season.[14][22]

He made his professional debut with the Charleston RiverDogs of the Class A South Atlantic League in 2014.[14] He had a .333 batting average (6th in the league), .428 on-base percentage (OBP; 3rd), .530 slugging percentage (SLG; 6th), a .958 OPS and hit nine home runs with 45 RBIs in 65 games for Charleston.[23] The Yankees promoted him to the Tampa Yankees of the Class A-Advanced Florida State League during the season, where he hit .283 with a .411 OBP (2nd in the league), .442 SLG, eight home runs, and 33 RBIs in 66 games for Tampa.[16][24]

The Yankees invited Judge to spring training as a non-roster player in 2015.[25] Judge began the 2015 season with the Trenton Thunder of the Class AA Eastern League.[26] After Judge batted .284/.350/.510 (5th in the league) with 12 home runs (tied for 9th) in 63 games for Trenton, the Yankees promoted Judge to the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders of the Class AAA International League in June.[27][28] He was chosen to represent the Yankees at the 2015 All-Star Futures Game.[29] The Yankees decided not to include Judge in their September call-ups.[30] Judge batted .224/.308/.373 with eight home runs in 61 games for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.[31][32] The Yankees invited Judge to spring training in 2016, and he began the season with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Judge was named to the International League All-Star Team in 2016 but did not play in the 2016 Triple-A All-Star Game after he spent a month on the disabled list due to a knee sprain.[33][34] In 93 games for the RailRiders, Judge batted .270/.366/.489 with 19 home runs (4th in the league), 62 runs (tied for 8th), and 65 RBIs (tied for 7th).[35][36]

New York Yankees (2016–present)


Judge batting in 2016

Judge made his MLB debut on August 13, 2016, starting in right field against the Tampa Bay Rays.[37] In his first MLB at-bat, Judge hit a home run off Matt Andriese; the previous batter, Tyler Austin, also making his MLB debut, had done the same. This marked the first time that two teammates had hit home runs in their first MLB career at-bats in the same game.[38] Judge also hit a home run in his second MLB game, becoming the second Yankees player (after Joe Lefebvre in 1980) to homer in each of his first two MLB games.[39] Judge's debut season, in which he batted .179/.263/.345 and struck out 42 times in 84 at-bats (95 plate appearances), ended prematurely when he was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a grade two right oblique strain on September 13, 2016, against the Los Angeles Dodgers.[40]


The Yankees named Judge their Opening Day right fielder against the Tampa Bay Rays.[41] He had his first multi-home run game on April 28 against the Baltimore Orioles to help the Yankees win 14–11, coming back from a 9–1 deficit.[42] One of the home runs had a measured exit velocity of 119.4 miles per hour (192.2 km/h), the fastest exit velocity for a home run measured by Statcast since it was adopted in 2015.[43] This record would later be broken by teammate Giancarlo Stanton on August 9, 2018, when Stanton launched a home run with an exit velocity of 121.7 miles per hour (195.9 km/h).[44] Judge ended the month of April with 10 home runs, tying the rookie record set by José Abreu and Trevor Story.[45] He was named the American League's (AL) Rookie of the Month for April.[46][47] In April, he had a .303 batting average, 10 home runs, 20 RBIs, and a .411 OBP in 22 games.[46]

Aaron Judge with the Yankees in 2017

The Yankees debuted a cheering section in the right-field seats of Yankee Stadium on May 22, 2017. Called "The Judge's Chambers", the section spans three rows in section 104 and contains 18 seats.[48][49] Fans are chosen by the team to sit there and are outfitted with black robes, wigs, and foam gavels.[49][50] In a game against the Oakland Athletics on May 28, Judge hit his first career grand slam.[51] Judge was named AL Rookie of the Month once again for May.[47] In May, he had a .347 batting average, seven home runs, 17 RBIs, and a .441 OBP in 26 games.[52]

On June 10, Judge hit a home run that had an exit velocity of 121.1 miles per hour (194.9 km/h), again setting a new record for the hardest measured by Statcast.[53] The following day, Judge went 4-for-4 with two home runs; one of the home runs traveled 495 feet (151 m), making it the longest home run hit in the 2017 season.[54] On June 12, Judge was named the AL Player of the Week. His week ended with him leading the AL in all three Triple Crown categories.[55] Judge was named the AL Player of the Month for June, batting .337 with 10 home runs, 25 RBIs and a .481 OBP. His performance in June also earned him his third consecutive AL Rookie of the Month award, the longest streak since Mike Trout won four in a row in 2012.[47][56] Judge had a 32-game on-base streak, including reaching base in every game in June.[57] On July 2, Judge was voted as a starting outfielder to the 2017 MLB All-Star Game, receiving 4,488,702 votes, the most of any player in the AL.[58]

Judge broke Joe DiMaggio's record for most home runs hit by a Yankees rookie with his 30th on July 7.[59] He became the second rookie to hit 30 home runs before the All-Star break (the first was Mark McGwire in 1987)[60] and the first Yankee to do so since Alex Rodriguez in 2007.[61] Before the All-Star break, Judge hit .329 with 30 home runs and 66 RBIs.

Judge won the 2017 Home Run Derby, besting Minnesota Twins third baseman Miguel Sanó 11–10 in the final round to become the first rookie to win the Derby outright.[62] After his performance, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred stated that Judge is a player "who can become the face of the game".[63] On July 21, Judge hit a home run that almost travelled out of Safeco Field. The ball was hit so hard that Statcast could not measure the details of the home run.[64]

Judge at bat in 2017

On August 16, Judge hit a 457-foot (139 m) home run at Citi Field that reached the third deck; he also broke a record for position players by striking out in a 33rd consecutive game.[65][66] On August 20, Judge tied pitcher Bill Stoneman's streak of striking out in 37 consecutive games.[67]

On September 4, Judge became the first AL rookie to record 100 walks in a single season since Al Rosen (1950), and the first player in MLB to do it since Jim Gilliam (1953). During a game on September 10, Judge received his 107th walk, the most walks by a rookie in a season since Ted Williams in 1939.[68] During the same game, he also became the second rookie in MLB history to hit 40 home runs in a season since McGwire (1987).[69] He joined Babe Ruth (1920), Lou Gehrig (1927), Joe DiMaggio (1937) and Mickey Mantle (1956) as the only Yankees to hit 40 home runs in a season at age 25 or younger.[70]

On September 25, Judge hit his 49th and 50th home runs, tying and surpassing Mark McGwire's single-season rookie home run record.[71] On September 30, Judge hit his 52nd home run of the season and his 33rd at Yankee Stadium, surpassing Babe Ruth's single-season record (set in 1921) for most home runs hit by a Yankees player at his home ballpark.[72] After the conclusion of September, Judge won Player of the Month for the second time and Rookie of the Month for the fourth time.[47]

Judge finished the 2017 regular season slashing .284/.422/.627 with 154 hits, 52 home runs, 114 RBI, 127 walks, 11 intentional walks and nine stolen bases.[73] He led the American League in home runs, runs scored (128), and walks (a major-league rookie record 127). He ranked second in the league in RBIs. He also struck out an MLB-leading 208 times,[74] breaking the Yankees record previously set by Curtis Granderson in 2012[75] and a rookie record previously set by Kris Bryant in 2015.[76]

With the Yankees finishing the year with a 91–71 record, the team clinched a Wild Card in the 2017 MLB postseason. During the Wild Card Game against the Minnesota Twins, Judge hit a home run en route to an 8–4 Yankees victory.[77] In Game 3 of the 2017 American League Division Series (ALDS), Judge robbed Francisco Lindor of a home run, preserving the tie game. Judge struck out 16 times in the series, setting an ALDS record.[78] After the Yankees defeated the Cleveland Indians in the ALDS, Judge hit three home runs for the Yankees in the 2017 American League Championship Series (ALCS). He also robbed Yulieski Gurriel of a potential home run in the Yankees' Game 7 ALCS loss to the Houston Astros. He finished with 27 strikeouts in the postseason, a major league record at the time.[79][a]

End-of-season awards for Judge included selection as an outfielder on Baseball America's All-MLB Team,[81] the Players Choice Award for Outstanding AL Rookie, and a Silver Slugger Award.[82] Judge was unanimously voted as the American League Rookie of the Year.[83] He went on to finish second in the voting for the 2017 American League Most Valuable Player Award to José Altuve, receiving two first-place votes, 27 second-place votes and one third-place vote.[84]

On November 21, it was revealed that Judge had undergone arthroscopic surgery in his left shoulder for a cartilage cleanup, an injury dating back to April of that year.[85][86]


Judge with the New York Yankees in 2018

On March 31, Judge made his first career start at center field in the majors. At 6 feet 7 inches (2.01 m) tall and weighing 282 pounds (128 kg), he became the tallest and heaviest player in baseball history to play the position.[87][88]

Batting .277 with 25 home runs and 58 RBIs, Judge was named a starting outfielder for the 2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.[89] Judge hit a solo home run off National League starter Max Scherzer.[90]

On July 26, Judge was hit by a 93 mph fastball by Kansas City Royals pitcher Jakob Junis on his right wrist and left the game in the fourth inning. Later, an MRI/CT scan revealed that he suffered a fractured ulnar styloid bone in his wrist. No surgery was required, and initial reports gave a three-week timetable for Judge to recover.[91] The injury took longer to heal than expected, with Judge missing close to two months as a result. On September 18, Judge returned to the starting lineup against the Boston Red Sox.[92] Judge finished the season with a .278 batting average, 27 home runs, and 67 RBIs in 112 games.[93] The Yankees eliminated the Oakland A's in the Wild Card Game,[94] but were defeated, three games to one, by the Red Sox in the American League Division Series.[95]


Judge started the season off with a .288 batting average, five home runs, and 11 RBIs in 20 games played.[96] However, on April 20, Judge suffered a left oblique strain while hitting a single in the sixth inning against the Kansas City Royals.[97] He did not play again until his return on June 21.[98]

On August 27, Judge hit his 17th home run of the season and 100th home run of his career, a 462-foot blast against the Seattle Mariners. Coming in his 371st game, it made him the third-fastest MLB player to hit 100 home runs.[99]

Judge hit a home run over Fenway Park's Green Monster for the first time on September 8. With this home run, the 2019 Yankees set a new franchise record for most home runs in a single season as a team.[100]

In 2019, he batted .272/.381/.540, with 27 home runs and 55 RBIs in 378 at-bats.[101] Balls he hit had the highest exit velocity on average of those hit by all major leaguers, at 95.9 mph (154.3 km/h).[102] He led the league in defensive runs saved as a right fielder (19 runs saved, tied with Cody Bellinger, but given higher placing due to efficiency by playing in fewer innings (775.1 vs. 911.1)). This earned him the Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Award for his position in right field.[103]


During Spring Training, Judge was dealing with soreness in his pectoral area. It was eventually revealed that he had suffered a stress fracture in his ribs and was ruled out for at least two weeks.[104]

Judge began the COVID-19 pandemic-delayed 60-game regular season with five consecutive games with a home run (6 during the span), launching a 419-feet, 108 mph three-run shot off of Boston Red Sox pitcher Matt Hall.[105] His streak ended on August 3 when he went 2-for-4 without a home run. It was the longest by a Yankees player since Alex Rodriguez (September 4–9, 2007).[106] On August 14, Judge was placed on the 10-day injured list with a right calf strain.[107] On August 26, he was again placed on the 10-day injured list after straining the same calf the day he returned against the Atlanta Braves.[108] He finished the season slashing .257/.336/.554 with nine home runs and 22 RBIs over 28 games.[109]


During the week of May 10–16, Judge earned his fourth career AL Player of the Week Award.[110] Judge posted a slash line of .571/.640/1.333 with eight runs scored, 12 hits, a double, five home runs, six RBIs and three walks over six games played (five multi-hit games and his 13th career multi-homer game). He also hit his 130th career home run, the second-most in MLB history through 460 career games, trailing only Ryan Howard (142).[111] On May 23, Judge recorded his first career walk-off RBI, taking a walk on a 3–1 pitch against Liam Hendriks of the Chicago White Sox.[112]

On July 9, Judge recorded his 500th career hit during a game against the Houston Astros by hitting a double to left field off pitcher Brandon Bielak.[113] He became the second fastest Yankee to 500 hits and 100 home runs. He accomplished the feat in his 506th game with only Joe DiMaggio getting there faster at 395 games.[114]

Judge was named the starting right fielder in the 2021 MLB All-Star Game.[115] Following the All-Star Game, Judge was placed on the COVID-19 injured list after testing positive to the virus.[116] Judge returned against the Tampa Bay Rays on July 27.[117]

On August 12, in the Field of Dreams game in Iowa, Judge hit two multiple-run home runs.[118] He also hit two home runs on September 11 against the New York Mets with his 31st and 32nd home runs.[119] On October 3, the last game of the regular season, Judge recorded his first career walk-off hit, a single that scored Tyler Wade to beat the Tampa Bay Rays 1–0 and clinch a Wild Card Game spot for the Yankees.[120] In the wild card game, Judge became the first Yankee to be ruled out at home plate on a hit in a winner-take-all game.[121]

Judge finished the 2021 season batting .287/.373/.544 with 158 hits, 39 home runs, 98 RBI, 75 walks and two intentional walks with six stolen bases.[122] After the season, Judge won a Fielding Bible Award for his defensive excellence and his second Silver Slugger Award.[123] On November 23, 2021, Judge was named to the First Team of the All-MLB Team as an outfielder.[124]


Judge (near third base) circles the bases at Yankee Stadium after his first home run of the 2022 season.

Before the 2022 New York Yankees season, Judge and the Yankees were unsuccessful in negotiating a long-term contract. General manager Brian Cashman told ESPN that the team offered Judge $17 million in arbitration and a seven-year extension worth $213.5 million. Cashman refused to comment on whether this affected the negotiations.[125] Judge avoided salary arbitration and signed a one-year, $19 million contract on June 24, with additional $250,000 bonuses for winning each of the MVP Award and the World Series MVP Award.[126]

Judge started the 2022 season strongly, slashing .293/.361/.600 for the month of April, with six home runs.[127]

Judge hit his first career walk-off home run off Toronto Blue Jays closer Jordan Romano on May 10 at Yankee Stadium.[128] Judge was recognised for his efforts in May with the American League Player of the Month Award.[129] During May, Judge slashed .311/.378/.699 with 12 home runs.[127]

Judge hit his second career walk-off home run on June 26 against the Houston Astros, sending Seth Martinez into the visiting bullpen.[130] This followed the Yankees being combined no-hit the previous game by the Astros.[130]

Judge was elected as a starter for the 2022 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, receiving the most fan votes of any player in the American League.[131] This was his second successive and fourth overall All-Star selection.[132]

He slugged his third and final walk-off homer for the season against the visiting Kansas City Royals on July 28, tying Mickey Mantle for most by a Yankee in a season.[133][134] Judge won back-to-back American League Player of the Week Awards for the weeks ending July 24 and 31.[135] Judge also claimed the AL Player of the Month Award for July 2023.[129] Judge hit .333/.436/.806 with 13 home runs for the month of July.[127]

On July 30, Judge became the second-fastest player in history to hit his 200th career home run (behind Ryan Howard), launching a two-run shot off of Jon Heasley of the Kansas City Royals.[136] On August 29, during a game against the Los Angeles Angels, Judge hit his 50th home run for the season, coming off reliever Ryan Tepera. He became only the tenth player in Major League Baseball history (and third player in Yankees franchise history) to record multiple 50 home run seasons.[137]

Judge hit his 55th home run during the first game of a doubleheader against the Minnesota Twins on September 7 off rookie starting pitcher Louie Varland. He became the fourth player in MLB history to hit 55-plus home runs and steal 15-plus bases in a single season, joining Babe Ruth (1921), Sammy Sosa (1998), and Ken Griffey Jr. (1997–98) on the all-time list.[138] On September 18 against the Milwaukee Brewers at American Family Field, Judge equalled Hank Greenberg and Sammy Sosa's record of 11 multiple home run games in an MLB season, bringing up his 58th and 59th home runs.[139][127] Judge's 60th homer was a blast to left field off Wil Crowe of the Pittsburgh Pirates at Yankee Stadium on September 20, 2022. Ninety-five years after Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs in a season, Judge became the third MLB player in American League (AL) history to hit 60 home runs in one season. He also became the fastest Yankee to accomplish this feat, doing so in 147 games.[140]

On September 28, Judge hit his 61st home run off Tim Mayza of the Toronto Blue Jays, tying Roger Maris for the most home runs in a single season in American League history.[141] In the second game of a doubleheader (and the Yankees' second-to-last regular season game) against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Field on October 4, Judge hit his 62nd home run off Jesús Tinoco, setting the new single-season American League home run record.[142][143] Some also consider Judge's mark of 62 home runs to be the legitimate Major League single-season record, as the only players with more home runs in a single season (Barry Bonds, Sosa, and McGwire) have all been tied to the use of performance-enhancing drugs.[144][145]

Judge was selected as the AL Player of the Week for the week of September 29 – October 5.[146] In this period, Judge hit both his record-equalling 61st and record-breaking 62nd home runs for the season. Judge claimed his third AL Player of the Month Award in September 2023.[129] Judge batted .417/.565/.869 for September.[127]

In 2022, Judge led the major leagues with 62 home runs, 133 runs scored, 131 RBI (tied with Pete Alonso of the Mets), 111 walks, and batted .311/.425/.686 with 177 hits, 28 doubles, and 19 intentional walks, while stealing 16 bases in 19 attempts.[147] Judge was denied the American League batting triple crown by the Minnesota Twins' Luis Arraez having a superior batting average by five points.[148] He played 78 games in center field, 73 games in right field, and 25 games as a designated hitter.[147]

For his play in the 2022 regular season, Judge won the 2022 American League MVP Award, earning 28 of 30 first-place votes.[149] He was also named to the 2022 All-MLB Team.[150] Judge's 2022 campaign is considered one of the best offensive seasons in Major League history.[151][152]

The Yankees qualified for the 2022 postseason, taking on the Cleveland Guardians in the 2022 American League Division Series, where Judge slashed .200/.238/.500 with two home runs, as the Yankees defeated the Guardians in five games.[153] In the 2022 American League Championship Series Judge hit just .063/.118/.063 with one hit and a walk as the Yankees were swept in four games by the Houston Astros, who would go on to win the World Series.

After the 2022 season, Judge became a free agent. The Yankees offered Judge the qualifying offer,[154] which he declined.[155]


Judge with the New York Yankees in 2023

During free agency, Judge was pursued by the San Diego Padres and San Francisco Giants as well as the Yankees.[156][157] By early December 2022, the former offered him over $400 million (according to Judge's agent). The Yankees were only offering $320 million over eight years. A new deal with the Yankees was created in a direct phone call between Judge and Hal Steinbrenner, the Yankees' owner, when Steinbrenner offered to add a ninth year and a guaranteed additional $40 million.[158] That became the foundation of an agreement that the Yankees and Judge signed on December 20, 2022, with the nine-year, $360 million deal breaking the record for the largest free agent deal in MLB history.[159] In a press conference on the following day, Steinbrenner named Judge the 16th captain of the Yankees, and the first since Derek Jeter had retired eight years earlier.[160][161]

On December 30, 2022, Judge was voted The Associated Press (AP) "Male Athlete of the Year" by a panel of 40 sports writers and editors from news outlets throughout the United States. Judge just edged out Los Angeles Angels two-way star and last year's winner Shohei Ohtani in voting.[162][163] Judge was also selected as the Time Magazine Athlete of the Year.[164]

On 2023 MLB Opening Day at Yankee Stadium, Judge made his first regular season appearance as the Yankees' captain. On the same day, with his first swing of the bat, Judge opened his 2023 home run account, depositing a long ball into Monument Park off San Francisco Giants ace Logan Webb.[165]

Judge spent his first stint for the season on the 10 Day injured list after a mild hip strain suffered while sliding into base playing against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field on April 26.[166] Judge returned against the Oakland Athletics on May 9.[167]

Judge received the American League Player of the Week Award for the week of May 15–21.[168] Despite missing the first week of games in May, Judge also won the American League Player of the Month Award for May 2023.[169] He hit .342/.474/.882 with 12 home runs in 21 games in May.[169]

On June 3, Judge crashed through a closed gate in the outfield wall at Dodger Stadium while taking a spectacular fly out off JD Martinez, causing a sprain to his toe and leading to him missing 42 games, with the Yankees going 19–23 in his absence.[170] Despite the injury, Judge was elected to the 2023 Major League Baseball All Star Game, but was unable to take his place, and he was replaced in the lineup by the Texas Rangers' Adolis Garcia.[171] Judge returned against the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards on July 28.[167]

On August 23, Judge hit three home runs (including a grand slam) against the Washington Nationals at Yankee Stadium.[172] He repeated the feat against the Arizona Diamondbacks at the Stadium less than a month later on September 22, becoming the first Yankee to homer three times in a game twice in a season.[173] Judge won his second AL Player of the Week Award for 2023 on September 24.[174]

On September 2, Judge hit his 250th home run (30th of the season) during a game against the Houston Astros. The 426-foot solo smash came off Astros ace Justin Verlander in the fifth inning. It was his 810th career game, setting a new record as the fastest player to reach 250 home runs in MLB history, passing the mark previously set by Ryan Howard (855 games) and Ralph Kiner (871 games).[175]

Despite missing 56 games, Judge recorded 37 home runs for the 2023 season, putting him on a 55 home run pace had he played a full season. Judge finished 2023 slashing .267/.406/.613, giving him his second successive year with an on-base plus slugging percentage over 1.000 and his third overall.[176] He had 98 hits, 16 doubles, 75 RBI, 88 walks, nine intentional walks and three stolen bases (caught stealing once).[176] The Yankees finished the regular season in fourth place in the AL East and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2016.[177]

Judge was honored with the Roberto Clemente Award before Game 3 of the 2023 World Series at Chase Field. The Award acknowledged his exemplary character and charity work promoting responsible youth and civic citizenship in New York and California through his ALL RISE foundation.[178][179] Judge was also selected to the All-MLB Team for the third successive year, this time to the Second Team.[180]

As captain, Judge appeared to take a more hands-on approach towards the Yankees organization, having conversations with Hal Steinbrenner about the team direction and potential changes following the Yankees missing the postseason.[181]


Following an injury interrupted spring training, Judge started the 2024 regular season slowly, hitting .180 through the first three weeks of April.[182][183][184] Judge primarily played at center field in the early part of the season, but also made his first major league appearance in left field as Alex Verdugo was absent on paternity leave.[185][186] By late April, Judge appeared more comfortable and improved his performance at the plate, collecting eight hits and three home runs along with six walks in the final week of the month.[183]

On May 4, Judge was ejected for the first time in his Major League career after arguing a third-strike call with umpire Ryan Blakney.[187]

Judge was selected as the American League Player of the Week for the week of May 19, 2024 after going 10-for-20 and slugging 1.200 with three home runs and five doubles in this period.[135][188] Judge was also selected as the American League Player of the Month for May, having hit 14 home runs and 12 doubles in the month, with 27 RBI.[189] This marked Judge's seventh AL Player of the Month selection, and his third successive May honor.[189] Judge also completed a homecoming of sorts, playing his first series at Oracle Park against the San Francisco Giants, where he went 6-for-10 with three home runs and six RBI as the Yankees swept the series.[190] By the end of May, Judge was slashing .277/.405/.643, with an OPS of 1.048.[191]

Judge was named the AL Player of the Week for a second time in 2024, for the week ending June 9.[135] In the six game homestand split against the Minnesota Twins and Los Angeles Dodgers, Judge slashed .500/.630/1.200 with three home runs and 12 RBI.[192] Following a 3-for-4 game against the Dodgers on June 9, Judge raised his season batting average to over .300 for the first time in 2024.[190] By the end of June, Judge led the majors in home runs (31), runs batted in (82), and OPS (1.144), and he was second in the AL in batting average (.316) among qualified hitters.[193][194] Judge concluded June slashing .316/.436/.708 for an OPS of 1.144 on the season through June.[195]

On June 27, Judge was announced as a starting outfielder for the American League in the 2024 MLB All-Star Game, having received the most votes.[196] This was the second time in three seasons that he led the majors in votes received.[197]

Judge won the AL Player of the Month Award again in June 2024, for the second successive month.[129] For the month of June, Judge slashed .409/.514/.864 with an OPS of 1.378, with 11 home runs and 37 RBI.[198]

Records and milestones

New York Yankees franchise records

AL records

MLB records

Awards and honors


Judge has worn the unusual uniform number of 99 since it was given to him during 2016 spring training[207] (higher numbers are typically given to young players who are not expected to make the final regular-season roster). In 2016, Judge had stated he would have preferred either No. 44 (retired by the Yankees to honor Reggie Jackson) or No. 35 but was not sure whether he would switch if the latter two were to become available.[207]

MLB along with the MLB Players Association, created Players Weekend to let players "express themselves while connecting with their past in youth baseball". From August 25–27, 2017, players wore alternate team jerseys inspired by youth league designs. They also had the option to replace their last names with their nicknames on their jersey nameplates, and the vast majority of players did so. Judge chose the nickname "All Rise" (given to him by former teammate Todd Frazier) to be worn on the back of his jersey nameplate.[208] For the 2018 Players Weekend, Judge chose to just have his last name on the back of his jersey.[209] During the 2019 event, Judge chose his own nickname, "BAJ", an abbreviation of "Big Aaron Judge".[210]

Player profile

Judge is listed at 6 feet 7 inches (2.01 m) and 282 pounds (128 kg).[211] Due to his large size and strength, he has elicited comparisons to teammate Giancarlo Stanton, as well as former MLB players Richie Sexson,[212] Dave Winfield, and Willie Stargell.[16]

Pregame rituals

Judge has been credited as a team leader both on and off the field.[213] He has a number of rituals before, during, and after games that set him apart from other players. According to Michael Kay (as discussed during The Michael Kay Show), before each game at Yankee Stadium, Judge ceremoniously tosses exactly 40 sunflower seeds in the grass behind home plate (one for each man on the extended Yankees roster.)[214] The prayer he recites after he tosses the seeds is unknown to the public.[214]

Personal life

Judge is a Methodist Christian[215] and has posted about his faith on his Twitter account.[216] He keeps a note on his phone that reads ".179", his batting average with the Yankees in 2016, and looks at it daily as a source of motivation.[217]

Judge has endorsed numerous organizations and products and has made several media appearances. Judge appeared on the cover of the May 15, 2017, edition of Sports Illustrated.[218] On May 15, 2017, he appeared on an episode of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon where he posed undercover to ask Yankee fans questions about himself.[219] On November 6, 2017, it was revealed that Judge would be the cover athlete for MLB The Show 18.[220] Judge endorsed Under Armour gear from 2014 until the 2018 season, when he signed an endorsement deal with Adidas.[221] In 2023, Judge signed with the Jordan Brand.[222] For the 2023 season, Legends Hospitality, the concessions company at Yankee Stadium announced "The 99 Burger", a California-inspired food item named after Judge's uniform number.[223]

Judge married Samantha Bracksieck in December 2021.[224]

All Rise Foundation

Judge is the Founder of the ALL RISE Foundation. Judge's mother, Patty, serves as its Executive Director and President.[225] The Foundation's mission statement is to "inspire children and youth to become responsible citizens and encourage them to reach unlimited possibilities."[226]

See also


  1. ^ This record was broken by Cody Bellinger in game 7 of the 2017 World Series just 11 days later.[80]


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Awards and achievements Preceded byCarlos Correa Manny Machado José Ramírez Yordan Álvarez Alex Bregman Matt Chapman Gunnar Henderson Himself American League Player of the Month June 2017 September 2017 May 2022 July 2022 September 2022 May 2023 May 2024 June 2024 Succeeded byJosé Altuve Didi Gregorius Yordan Álvarez Alex Bregman Matt Chapman Shohei Ohtani Himself Incumbent