Aaron Judge misses 61 by a few feet, Yankees clinch playoff berth in walk-off win over Red Sox
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Aaron Judge hit a ball 113 mph that flew 404 feet.
The problem is he hit it to the deepest part of Yankee Stadium.
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However, the New York Yankees were able to come back against the Boston Red Sox, and Josh Donaldson’s walk-off single in the 10th gave them a 5-4 win.
Judge’s long fly out not only was this close to being his fourth walk-off home run of the year, but it also would have been his 61st home run of the season, tying Roger Maris for the AL record in a single season.
With Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, and Sammy Sosa all surpassing Maris between 1998 and 2001, many consider 61 to be the true record, so all eyes have been on Judge in the Bronx.
Judge is a powerful figure, but even this time, he couldn’t clear the center field wall where Monument Park sits 408 feet away from home plate.
But everyone thought it was gone.
Although he was hitless on the night, he kept up his Gold Glove caliber defense in right field, throwing an absolute seed to keep the Red Sox’s potential leading run off the bases in the top of the ninth inning.
Judge walked three times in the game, and Red Sox pitchers were booed every time.
It was Donaldson’s third walk-off hit of the season, and his second against Boston this year. In August, he hit a walk-off grand slam down three runs in extra innings, and on Opening Day, he had a walk-off single against Boston.
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The Yankees also clinched a postseason spot with the victory. It’s their sixth consecutive trip to the postseason and their 24th in the last 28 seasons, having only missed in 2008, 2013, 2014, and 2016 in that span.
Judge now has three more games in the Bronx – against Boston – to get 61 and 62 before the Yankees head for a three-game set in Toronto.