2:11pm: Now MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan tells us that Hamilton will have X-rays taken to make sure nothing is structurally wrong with the shoulder. Let’s assume it’s just a precautionary measure.
THURSDAY, 1:43pm: Hamilton woke up Thursday with a good amount of soreness and may stick to conditioning work for the next few days. It doesn’t sound too serious, though, and he should be caught up with the rest of the Rangers’ position players by the time spring games begin.
WEDNESDAY, 4:40pm: First day of workouts and Josh Hamilton is already hurt, having taken a spill while chasing a fly ball. Bruises and contusions they say. He’s day-to-day, as are we all.
Last year Hamilton missed time with rib cage, groin and back problems. If you’re a Rangers fan you’d rather see him not get hurt, but at least he’s wearing evenly.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: