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Yankees' Aaron Judge Crushes First Career Walk-Off Home Run to Beat Blue Jays

Judge is the first player in baseball to hit 10 home runs this season.
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No big-league ballpark would've been able to hold this one. 

Yankees center fielder Aaron Judge decimated a walk-off, three-run home run off Blue Jays closer Jordan Romano in the bottom of the ninth inning on Tuesday night, giving New York a 6-5 victory at Yankee Stadium. 

The 450-foot moonshot—the first walk-off home run of Judge's career—soared into the second deck, leaving his bat at 112.5 mph.

Judge stepped up to the plate after back-to-back walks from catcher Jose Trevino and third baseman DJ LeMahieu with one out in the frame. Down two runs, Judge battled, fouling off three pitches.

Romano is tied for the league-lead in saves this season (with 12) and has been one of the most dominant closers in baseball, winning the American League Reliever of the Month Award in April. When the right-hander hung a slider on the sixth pitch of the at-bat and Judge made contact, walking out of the batter's box as he admired his work, everybody in the Bronx knew the ballgame was over.

"What an at-bat," Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters after the win. "Saw everything, spoiled some heaters and then got a hanger and obviously didn't miss it there with two strikes. Once Jose gets on, you're like 'man, alright there's a good chance Judgey is getting to the plate in that situation.' Down two there against their closer, that's what you're hoping for."

Considering New York was held hitless through the first five innings of this game—until LeMahieu's leadoff double off Toronto's left-hander Yusei Kikuchi in the sixth—and had been struggling to score runs in recent days, the outfielder said he was just excited to help his team get going.

"Just trying to do my job up there," Judge said, calling Romano one of the best closers in the game. "I know I have a couple guys behind me that are swinging the bat well. Just tried to get a pitch I could drive and was able to do something with it."

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New York's slugger now leads Major League Baseball with 10 home runs this season. He's hitting .290/.356/.982 over 28 games so far in 2022 with 22 RBI and 21 runs scored. 

It's still early in the year, but his numbers so far are reminiscent of his historic rookie season in 2017. Judge went on to smack 52 homers that year, winning AL Rookie of the Year while finishing second in the race for the league's Most Valuable Player Award.

"Everybody knows who Aaron Judge is," Yankees right-hander Luis Severino added postgame. "I think in 2017, he should've won MVP that year. No doubt about it. He's a great hitter, a great player and in big situations like tonight, you know Aaron is going to [come] through."

The win for the Yankees raises their record to 21-8. The Angels are the only other American League team with that many wins, as of Tuesday night.

"That was such a sick win for us," Yankees designated hitter Josh Donaldson said. "For Judge to end it like that. Trevino had a great at-bat, LeMahieu had a great at-bat to set Judge up for that moment and he took advantage of it."


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