Aaron Judge has been reinstated from the disabled list by the New York Yankees and the record-breaking slugger is expected to return to the lineup Tuesday night against the Oakland A’s.
The reigning American League MVP hasn’t played since April 27 due to a strained right hip. He is hitting .261 with six home runs, 14 RBIs and an .863 OPS in 26 games during his first season as Yankees captain.
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New York (19-17) went 4-6 without Judge, averaging just 3.5 runs per game despite scoring seven in each of the last two. He becomes the second regular in a week to join the injury-plagued Yankees; Fellow outfielder Harrison Bader has had a tear at the plate since he returned from a strained left oblique muscle and made his season debut May 2 against Cleveland.
Designated hitter Giancarlo Stanton (left hamstring strain) and third baseman Josh Donaldson (right hamstring strain) remain on the disabled list, along with several key pitchers, including Luis Severino and Carlos Rodón. .
New York started the final day in the highly competitive AL East, 10 games behind first place Tampa Bay.
To make room for Judge on the active roster, the Yankees traded left-hander Nick Ramirez to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre after Monday night’s series opener against Oakland. The move came shortly after Ramirez threw 35 pitches in two shutout innings to wrap up a 7-2 victory.
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New York also placed infielder Oswald Peraza on the 10-day disabled list with a sprained right ankle, a move retroactive to Saturday, and called up right-hander Greg Weissert from the RailRiders.
Judge said he won’t have any restrictions on his return, but will try to avoid head slides. The 6-foot-7 slugger was hurt April 26 in Minnesota, his 31st birthday, when he landed hard while throwing an awkward head slide to try to steal third base.
He stayed in the game and started the next day at Texas, then left in the fourth inning after striking out twice. Days later, he was placed on the disabled list for the seventh time since he made his major league debut in 2016.
Judge worked out last weekend at the Yankees’ minor league complex in Tampa, Florida, about 30 minutes from where New York was playing the Rays.
The four-time All-Star hit 62 home runs last season to break the American League record held by Roger Maris since 1961. Judge hit .311 with 131 RBIs, tying Mets slugger Pete Alonso for the most. in the majors.
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Judge became a free agent in November before re-signing with the Yankees for $360 million over nine years.