Aaron Judge ‘not doing’ Home Run Derby until ‘it’s back in New York’

New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge watches the ball go into the stands for a home run against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of a baseball game, Sunday, June 9, 2024, in New York.
AP Photo/Noah K. Murray

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Aaron Judge announced he will not be participating in this year’s Home Run Derby at the All-Star Game in Texas, despite leading MLB with 28 home runs. The announcement came prior to Judge hitting another homer in the Yankees’ 8-3 win over the Atlanta Braves at Yankee Stadium.

“I’m not doing it,’’ Aaron Judge said. “I’m not done with it. Once it’s back in New York, I’ll be there.”

Although the Yankees captain declined the invitation from event organizers, he made it clear that he hasn’t ruled out future participation. He expressed interest in returning when the event is held in New York again, emphasizing his eagerness to perform for the home crowd.

Aaron Judge won the 2017 Home Run Derby, where he hit 47 home runs over three rounds, defeating Miguel Sano in the final by smashing 11 homers in less than half of his allotted time. Four of his home runs exceeded 500 feet, with the longest reaching 513 feet.

Aaron Judge has been on a remarkable run, hitting 24 home runs in his last 50 games. Despite a recent hand injury that still requires protective padding, he continues to deliver at an elite level for the Yankees.

Aaron Judge wins 2017 Home Run Derby

Despite leading the majors with 28 home runs, including his latest shot in the first inning against the Atlanta Braves on Saturday, Judge will not be partaking in the Derby. However, he is still expected to attend the All-Star Game at Globe Life Field in Texas on July 16.

When fans can see Aaron Judge in HR Derby again

Fans hoping for a repeat performance from Aaron Judge will have to wait, as the Home Run Derby isn’t scheduled in New York for at least two more years. The 2025 All-Star Weekend is slated for Truist Park in Atlanta, followed by Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia in 2026.

Aaron Judge’s decision to wait for a New York-based Derby could potentially influence MLB to consider Yankee Stadium as a host for the 2027 event.

Yankees Aaron Judge is in a pensive mood at dugout of Yankee stadium after hit by a pitch while playing against the Orioles on June 18, 2024

The event last graced the Big Apple in 2013 at the Mets’ Citi Field. The Yankees’ turn came in 2008, bidding farewell to the original Yankee Stadium. That year’s Home Run Derby, clinched by Justin Morneau, is etched in memory for Josh Hamilton‘s record-shattering 28 homers in a single round.

Hamilton’s power display, including a 518-foot blast, captivated fans and fellow players alike. The prospect of Aaron Judge participating in a Derby at the current Yankee Stadium could prove irresistible for both fans and television executives, making it a compelling option for MLB to consider.

While Aaron Judge won’t be competing for the Home Run Derby trophy this season, he and the Yankees have their sights set on a bigger prize. Leading the AL East with a 51-27 record, the team is focused on a strong postseason run to capture their first World Series title since 2009.

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