When the Yankees took Aaron Judge with the #32 pick in the 2013 MLB Draft, the hope was that the Paul Bunyan prototype (6-7, 282 lbs.) would provide prodigious power for the Bombers someday.
Judge was coming off a stellar college career (a three-time All-Mountain West Conference selection at Fresno State University), and was the winner of the 2012 TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby.
So, it was not hard to “judge” his physical tools, or that he could flat out mash baseballs. The question was, would he swing and miss too much?
As a rule, power hitters tend to have high strikeout rates because they generally swing and miss a lot. Usually someone with a high strikeout percentage is not long for the major leagues, unless of course he has light tower power. In Judge’s case, he put up numbers in the minors. In 2014, he went -.303, 21, 93 (155 games), the following year – .255, 20, 72 (124 games), and last year hit .270, 19, 65 (93 games). With production like that, the fact that he struck out every 6.69 plate appearances is acceptable.
And, fresh off of hitting his 10th bomb of the young season (.303, 20 RBI’s) today for the 1st place Yankees, NO ONE cares that he is punching out every 3.81 plate appearances so far in 2017. This guy is locked in and is punishing baseballs! As Bruno Mars sings: (if you) “don’t believe me just watch”: