Matt Olson continues power surge, hits 21st home run

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Everyone’s talking about Phillies 1B/OF Rhys Hoskin, and for good reason. Entering Sunday, he had homered 18 times in 36 games. J.D. Martinez has also garnered lots of press for his prodigious power, going yard 23 times in 50 games since becoming a Diamondback. Few people, however, have been talking about Athletics first baseman Matt Olson, who on Sunday cranked out his 21st home run in his 53rd game.

Olson’s solo shot came in the fourth inning against Henderson Alvarez, tying the game at two apiece. It was the second of back-to-back home runs with Chad Pinder.

Olson, 23, has been particularly powerful since the end of August. Between August 27 and today, he hit 13 home runs in 18 games. He and Martinez (12) are the only players with double-digit homers since that date. The Indians’ Jose Ramirez has nine. Hoskins has eight.

Following Sunday’s action, Olson is batting .266/.354/.651 with 40 RBI along with the 21 round-trippers in 192 plate appearances.

Aaron Judge out of Yankees starting lineup for finale after No. 62

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ARLINGTON, Texas — Yankees slugger Aaron Judge wasn’t in the starting lineup for New York’s regular-season finale, a day after his 62nd home run that broke Roger Maris’ 61-year-old American League single-season record.

When Judge homered in the first inning Tuesday night, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Texas Rangers, it was his 55th consecutive game. He has played in 157 games overall for the AL East champions.

With the first-round bye in the playoffs, the Yankees won’t open postseason play until the AL Division Series starts next Tuesday.

Even though Judge had indicated that he hoped to play Wednesday, manager Aaron Boone said after Tuesday night’s game that they would have a conversation and see what made the most sense.

“Short conversation,” Boone said before Wednesday’s game, adding that he was “pretty set on probably giving him the day today.”

Asked if there was a scenario in which Judge would pinch hit, Boone responded, “I hope not.”

Judge went into the final day of the regular season batting .311, trailing American League batting average leader Minnesota’s Luis Arraez, who was hitting .315. Judge was a wide leader in the other Triple Crown categories, with his 62 homers and 131 RBIs.

Boone said that “probably the one temptation” to play Judge had been the long shot chance the slugger had to become the first AL Triple Crown winner since Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera in 2012.