With power, speed and average as their main assets at the plate, Aaron Judge and George Springer are two leaders of the new school leadoff hitters making an impact from the first pitch of the game.
The American League home run record is impressive, but one of the unsung things outfielder Aaron Judge has done this season is move into the leadoff spot to spark the New York Yankees offense into being one of the best in baseball.
Aaron Judge and Mookie Betts Bring MLBbro Influence That Dominates MLB MVP Races @SPORTWORLDORDER is in the Lead Off today for https://t.co/Eo3hFyKGRO pic.twitter.com/7eXz7kNw1T
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Aaron Judge has shown the world that fans need to be in their seats early with a beer and popcorn in hand because he is ready to get the party started.
“We were at a point where we were really thin and did not have any options,” manager Aaron Boone said when asked why he began using Judge in the leadoff role this season.
The door opened for him to slide into the leadoff spot after a toe injury to infielder D.J. LeMahieu earlier this year.
This season Judge is batting over just under .400 out of the leadoff spot with 11 home runs.
Comparing that to the two hole, where he is around .290 and the three spot where he is at .360, the fear factor Judge can have on pitchers when he is the first batter they face when stepping into the batter’s box can have an effect that lasts throughout the game.
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The only offensive categories Judge does not lead the American League in currently are steals, which he has a career-high 16 and batting average. He has two legs of the Triple Crown locked up and trails in average by only .003 with four games left this season.
George Springer is fourth All-Time with 52 leadoff home runs and will be looking to add a few more when he is back in the playoffs for the first time since 2020.
George Springer showing Aaron Judge how to lead off
— Bovada (@BovadaOfficial) September 27, 2022
This year he has a Blue Jays franchise record nine, just three of his personal record of 12 back in 2019 with Houston. Over the weekend the Blue Jays officially locked up their first playoff berth since losing in the 2020 Wild Card Game. That was the only playoff experience this young Blue Jays core has besides Springer, who helped the Astros get a ring in 2017 and 2018 ALCS MVP Jackie Bradley Jr.
Over his last seven games Springer is hitting .429 with four home runs, eight RBI and seven runs scored.
His Blue Jays currently have a four game hold on the top American League Wild Card spot, which guarantees them three home playoff games in “The Six.”