Yanks’ Judge given a day off
Girardi sits slumping slugger and Holliday against Indians ace.
Aaron Judge’s slump has carried him to the bench.
Judge was not in New York’s starting lineup for Thursday night’s game against the Cleveland Indians, a move Yankees manager Joe Girardi decided was necessary to give the slugger a chance to regroup.
“He’s struggling. We felt we’d give him a day off and maybe it helps him,” Girardi said. “You try to do it a lot of different ways when guys are struggling. You keep running him out there. I just felt maybe a day off would do him some good.”
Judge is batting just .164 (11 of 67) with four homers, nine RBIs and 29 strikeouts since the All-Star break. His batting average has dropped from .329 to .299 and he struck out in 21 consecutive games.
“Mechanically, he’s a little bit off,” Girardi said. “I think he’s missing some pitches he wasn’t missing the first half of the season and those are leading to his problems.”
With Indians ace Corey Kluber on the mound in the series opener, Girardi felt it was the right time to rest the power hitter.
Judge leads the majors with 34 homers but he’s not been connecting as of late, and Girardi wants to give the 25-year-old a mental break.
Girardi conceded that players can make things tougher on themselves in trying to get their swing back.
Girardi also gave designated hitter Matt Holliday a night off. He’s batting only .182 in his past nine games.
Judge and Holliday are expected to be back in the lineup today.
All-Star righthander Michael Fulmer (10-9, 3.59 ERA) hopes a stint on the 10-day disabled list will provide him with the rest he needs to recover from a quirky, persistent elbow injury.
Fulmer, the 2016 AL rookie of the year, was placed on DL retroactive to Tuesday mostly as a precaution.
An MRI revealed fluid around the elbow, but manager Brad Ausmus said there’s no ligament damage. The Tigers are describing the injury as right elbow ulnar neuritis.
Catcher Jonathan Lucroy made his Colorado debut after missing the past two games with a stomach bug.
Lucroy, acquired from Texas on Sunday, had two singles, was hit by a pitch, and threw out Jose Reyes trying to steal second in the eighth inning.
Aaron Judge has 29 K’s since All-Star break.