No Triple Crown as Judge sits for Game 162

October 6th, 2022

ARLINGTON -- Freshly crowned as the American League’s single-season home run champion, Aaron Judge earned a day off.

The Yankees' slugger didn't play in Wednesday’s regular-season finale vs. the Rangers at Globe Life Field. It marked Judge’s first day on the bench since Aug. 4 at St. Louis; he had started each of the Yankees’ previous 55 games.

"I talked with [manager Aaron Boone] last night," Judge said after the Yanks' 4-2 loss. "I made my case [to play]. He said I was down, so I was down."

The rest day guaranteed that Judge wouldn't become the 11th different player to win the Triple Crown in AL/NL history since RBIs became an official statistic in 1920.

Although Judge led the AL in homers with his league-record 62 and RBIs with 131, his .311 batting average finished second to the Twins' Luis Arraez, who went 1-for-1 with two walks before being removed from Wednesday's game against the White Sox with a .316 mark.

Boone said that there was some slight temptation to play Judge because of the Triple Crown factor.

“In the end, I think we’re good either way,” Boone said. “I just decided, 'All right, we have [the home run record].' It was a short conversation.”

An AL MVP favorite, Judge concluded his season atop the MLB leaderboard in on-base percentage (.425), slugging percentage (.686), extra-base hits (90), total bases, (391) and FanGraphs WAR (11.5).

“What Aaron has done certainly shoots to the top of the list, to witness the season he just put out there,” Boone said. “We’ll be talking about it forever, when we’re all long gone. That’s how special of an individual season it’s been.”

Judge will next be on the diamond when the Yankees begin the ALDS at home vs. the Guardians or Rays on Tuesday.

"Both good teams," Judge said. "It's going to be a tough series, no matter who we face. We've gone back and forth with both those teams. I'm looking forward to whoever we face."