Yankee fans received great news this week.
Twenty eight year-old all-star outfielder Aaron Judge confirmed that he is “game-ready” during a recent zoom conference call. Initially, Judge was diagnosed with having a fractured rib and a punctured lung 4 months ago. Judge sustained the injury diving in the outfield, late in the season last year. It was thought that Judge would start the 2020 season on the injured reserve list. However, the time off due to the shut down because of the COVID-19 global pandemic was a blessing in disguise.
“I’m game-ready. Like I told you guys in spring training, I was going to be ready for opening day,” Judge said. “I’m feeling good. The biggest thing now is just getting the reps in because I missed so many at-bats in spring training. I didn’t get all the reps in the outfield, reps on the bases. Right now, it’s just about getting my timing back in the game and just getting my game reps in and go out there for 60 games.”
The recent downtime allowed for some much-needed healing measures for the slugging right fielder. Judge is confident that he will play on opening day, July 23 in Washington D.C. against the defending champions Washington Nationals.
Judge also expressed that despite of the coronavirus running rampant, and recent spikes elsewhere in the United States, sitting the season out wasn’t an option.
“There’s obviously a risk — of anything,” Judge said with regards to playing during the current health crisis. “Just walking outside, there’s a risk. Leaving your apartment, there’s a risk. There’s risk everywhere, but I love this game, and I love the team that we’ve got here and the opportunity we have here.”
Judge is confident that the Yankees organization will do everything in their might to keep everyone safe. Judge confirmed to the media members on hand that he will do his part to follow all health and safety regulations accordingly. Judge also stated that he trusts his teammates to do the same. If they don’t, he would not mind playing the role of enforcer to ensure that his teammates are following the proper precautions.
“That’s what we talked about as a team and with each other, hammering being accountable for each other,” Judge said. “Watching out for each other. Making sure you’re washing your hands, making sure you wear your mask, making sure you’re doing the things so that everybody stays healthy and stays on the field.”
Last season Judge was sitting on the shelf due to an oblique injury which prompted him to miss the end of the regular season as well as the post season. Judge finished the 2019 season hitting .272 with 27 homeruns. Outside of the fans, the Yankees team is happy to have Judge’s bat in the lineup once again.