There was never any chance of a hung jury when it came to the 2017 American League Rookie of the Year Award: On Monday, Yankee slugger Aaron Judge was pronounced guilty of being the best newcomer in the league — by a unanimous vote.
That makes him the ninth Bronx Bomber to win the honor and the first since Derek Jeter claimed it in 1996. Judge also becomes only the 10th AL player to snag the prize unanimously and 22nd overall. Congratulations, big guy. You earned it. Of course, there was never any doubt about the verdict. After all, the 25-year-old, 6-foot-7 right-fielder performed some stunning extra-judicial feats.
Like whacking 52 homers, smashing Mark McGwire’s 1987 record for the most ever by a rookie. Leading the American League in both runs scored (128) and walks drawn (127). And racking up 114 RBIs, second most in the league.
Nor would many disagree that this year’s Baby Bombers couldn’t have made it into post-season play without Judge’s magic.
“It means everything. It’s quite an honor,” Judge said, adding that he’s just “one piece of an organization.”
The good news is he returns to that New York organization in 2018. And while the Yanks didn’t quite snatch the Fall Classic
fall, as they say: Wait ’til next year.