Move over, Joe DiMaggio. Aaron Judge homered his way into the Yankees’ history books on Friday night, recording his 30th home run to surpass the 29-home run record DiMaggio set during his rookie year. Now, thanks to Judge, no one in franchise history has touched 30 home runs in their rookie season — and we haven’t even reached the All-Star break yet.
The historic blast came in the fifth inning of Friday’s 9-4 loss to the Brewers, when Judge connected on a 1-0 changeup from Josh Hader, sending it a projected 432 feet to put the Yankees up 4-2:
Not only did the rookie right fielder tie DiMaggio’s club-best mark, but he extended his personal home run streak to three games after hitting a solo home run on Tuesday and a record-tying two-run shot on Wednesday.
The Yankees, meanwhile, dropped their third consecutive game after a five-run rally helped the Brewers to a sizable lead in the seventh inning. With the loss, the Yankees drop to 4.5 games back of the Red Sox in the AL East, while the Brewers now sit a full 4.5 games above the second-place Cubs in the NL Central.
Jaime Garcia has been at the center of trade talks for several days now, but on Friday night, he commanded center stage for an entirely different reason. The Braves’ southpaw went head-to-head with Dodgers’ lefty Alex Wood and mashed his first career grand slam: a two-out, 399-foot blast that cleared the wall in right field and put the Braves up 9-0 in the fifth inning.
The bases-loaded knock was the third career home run for Garcia, whose contributions at the plate have been few and far between over his nine-year track in the major leagues. Not only did the homer mark an impressive career first for the 30-year-old, but it was just the second pitcher grand slam in Braves’ history and the first since 1966.
Garcia looked almost as impressive on the mound during Friday’s series opener, issuing one run, four hits and three strikeouts through his first six innings. The Braves currently lead the Dodgers 12-1 in the top of the seventh inning.
As for whether the slam will affect negotiations between the Braves and Twins? MLB.com’s Mike Petriello put it best:
Athletics’ first baseman Ryon Healy had a scary moment during Friday’s loss to the Mets. Lucas Duda smacked a single to the first base side, where the ball took a high hop and caught Healy in the left temple. He crumpled to the ground after getting struck by the one-hopper, but was eventually able to stand and walk off the field with assistance from a trainer.
Prior to the injury, Healy went 2-for-3 at the plate with an RBI single in the first inning. He was replaced by Yonder Alonso, who finished off the rest of the night’s 7-5 loss with a walk in two plate appearances.
Following the game, manager Bob Melvin told reporters that Healy did not appear to have sustained a concussion as a result of the hit. Healy said he thinks he’ll be good to go for Saturday’s game, though a final decision likely won’t be made until tomorrow.