Yankees Manager Aaron Boone Grants Aaron Judge’s Six-Year Wish: Judge to Hit Third in New York Yankees Lineup

Tampa, Florida – New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone has finally granted Aaron Judge’s longstanding request to hit third in the team’s lineup. Despite Judge’s impressive 62 home run season in the past, Boone had previously assigned him the leadoff spot. However, Judge’s desire to hit third has persisted throughout the years. Now, Boone plans to place Judge in the third spot, following DJ LeMahieu and Juan Soto.

Judge believes that hitting third will allow him to drive in more runs by taking advantage of having speedsters on base ahead of him. He acknowledges that this thinking is rooted in an “old-school” mentality, where the best hitters traditionally occupied the third spot in the lineup. Judge’s desire aligns with the trend in Major League Baseball, as most teams now place their top hitters in the second spot in the order. Notable exceptions to this strategy include players like Ronald Acuña Jr., Bryce Harper, Vlad Guerrero Jr., and José Ramírez, who all hit third for their respective teams.

The decision of where to place Judge and Soto in the lineup could depend on the opposing starting pitcher. Boone aims to achieve balance in the Yankees’ lineup and considers the layout and rest of the lineup when making the decision. Judge also emphasizes the importance of having a high on-base percentage hitter in front of him and Soto to maximize run-producing potential.

Judge’s ideal lineup would also feature a speedy player at the top of the order, such as Anthony Volpe, who has the potential to be a great leadoff hitter for the team. Judge believes that having Soto hit in front of him will improve his own numbers, as it would result in more scoring opportunities.

During a recent practice, Yankees pitcher Nestor Cortes had the unique experience of pitching to both Judge and Soto consecutively in the revamped lineup. He joked that facing the sluggers felt like a tryout again. Cortes performed well, striking out Soto in all three plate appearances.

Overall, the combination of Judge and Soto in the Yankees’ lineup is expected to be formidable. These two players are regarded as some of the best hitters in Major League Baseball, and their presence is set to make the Yankees one of the most dynamic teams in the sport.

As long as Judge and Soto stay healthy, Boone is confident that their spots in the lineup will be secure, given their consistent performance and contributions to the team.