Aaron Judge saluted Yankees fans and offered souvenirs in his return to right field
Fresh off a nine-game road trip, the Yankees got a nice morale boost on Friday when they activated Aaron Judge from the disabled list. The All-Star outfielder hadn't been on the roster since suffering an injury on a hit-by-pitch back on July 26. He's still in the process of recovering and unable to hit just yet, but that didn't make Yankee Stadium any less excited to welcome him back.
So with the game in hand by the eighth inning of the Yankees' 11-0 win over the Blue Jays, skipper Aaron Boone sent Judge out to right field as a defensive replacement. When PA announcer Paul Olden read his name to the crowd, Judge was almost immediately showered with applause.
Judge was happy to be back too and responded in kind:
"We've got the best fans in the world," Judge said to MLB.com's Bryan Hoch after the game. "It's great to hear their support. I think they were just cheering for that 11-0 ballgame, that's what I thought.
"They turn Yankee Stadium alive. It's amazing what those fans do."
The right fielder had more than just a wave in store. After playing catch to warm up in each of his innings, he threw the last ball to fans in the stands ... both nearby and far away:
From hand-delivered to heaved into the upper deck, Judge had the Yankees faithful covered.
It's only a matter of time before Judge is launching more souvenirs into the stands in a more familiar fashion.