Yankees crush Jays 5-2 to win AL East, Judge’s HR wait becomes longer

Yankees win 2022 AL East title

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New York Yankees 5, Toronto Blue Jays 2

TORONTO — The New York Yankees defeated the Toronto Blue Jays 5-2 on Tuesday night to become the AL East division champions. However, they had to celebrate without the home-run record of Aaron Judge, who had four walks but remained at 60 home runs, one short of the American League record set by Roger Maris.

The Yankees celebrated their 20th AL East division title, which tied them with the Dodgers for the second-most after the Atlanta Brave’s 21. With this win, New York (95-59) got a bye in the first round and will play the Division Series at home. However, their most prolific hitter again missed the record for single-season home runs.

Judge struck out in his first at-bat, and then he walked four times in a row as the Yankees clinched the AL East title. This is the seventh game in a row that he hasn’t hit a home run. Since hitting his 60th home run against Pittsburgh last week, he has walked 11 times in 30 at-bats.

All five times Judge was up to bat, he faced 33 pitches, 14 of which were strikes. This year, he went nine games without a home run, which was in mid-August, when the Yankees had one of their worst records.

Judge still has eight games remaining in the regular season for the Yankees, giving him the opportunity to equal or break the American League homer record established by Maris in 1961.

Because Judge did not get a hit in this at-bat, his batting average remained the same at .314. He started the day in first place in all three of the categories that put him to win the AL Triple Crown. After the Yankees became AL East division champions, his claim to MVP also gets a boost.

Despite the defeat, the Toronto Blue Jays (87-68) remained in the first position in the American League wild-card rankings.

Jameson Taillon got the win with the help of Gleyber Torres, who had three hits and drove in three runs.

Taillon threw 7 1/3 innings allowing two runs on five hits and played a key role in the final game that assure his team the AL east title. He has a perfect record of 4-0 in his career starts in Torontos’ Rogers Center.

When Lou Trivino came in to finish the inning, there were already runners on first and second base. On his first pitch, he got George Springer to ground into a double play, which ended the inning and the Yankees turned into the AL East winners.

The game was finished off by Trivino in the ninth inning, marking his first save with the Yankees and his 11th overall out of 14 opportunities.

As a result of Kyle Higashioka’s three hits and two runs scored, as well as Anthony Rizzo‘s two hits, New York was able to win for the eighth time in nine games.

When Jose Berroos walked Judge in the third and fifth innings, many in the crowd of 40,528 booed him.

Torres scored three hits and three RBIs while Judge drew four walks in the Yankees’ AL East winner game. After being hit by a pitch to start the fifth inning, Judge advanced to third on a bloop single by Rizzo and scored on a drive by Torres. Torres was the player who drove in Judge for the second time.

In the third inning, Rizzo’s RBI single allowed Higashioka to score, and also gave Judge the chance to go to second.

Judge shifted across to center field from right field since Harrison Bader was not in the AL East winner’s starting lineup. In the sixth inning, Judge had one of two assists for the Yankees in the outfield.

After Bader entered the game as a defensive sub in the seventh inning, Judge moved to the right side of the field.

Berros was driven from the game after back-to-back singles by Higashioka and Aaron Hicks in the sixth inning, which made the score 4-1. Zach Pop, a right-handed pitcher, stepped in to face Judge and went ahead 0-2 before ultimately walking him after eight pitches, which prompted additional booing from the crowd.

David Phelps, a right-handed pitcher for the Blue Jays, went ahead of Judge 1-2 in the eighth inning with back-to-back swings and misses. However, three of the next four pitches he threw to Judge were balls.

Even though Springer hit a home run on Taillon’s second pitch of the game, the Yankees right-hander went on to retire 15 of the next 16 hitters after that.

It was Springer’s 24th home run of the season and the 52nd leadoff home run of his career when he hit the home shot. Taillon had an exceptional performance that aptly celebrated his team’s AL East championship.

After Whit Merrifield produced a leadoff single in the third inning, Taillon retired the next 10 batters in a row. The streak was broken by Springer in the sixth inning with a single with one out.

After that, Bo Bichette hit a single to center field and reached the second base safely. But the play was overturned after second-base umpire Tripp Gibson ruled that the player failed to set his foot on the base after a tag out by Isiah Kiner-Falefa.

After that, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. drove in a run with a single. But Hicks, who was playing left field, threw him out at the second base. This put an end to Toronto’s comeback efforts and handed the game as well as the AL East crown to New York.

After staying undefeated in his previous six starts, Berro had two losses in a row after he gave up five runs and nine hits over the course of five-and-a-third innings. His earned run average reached 5.37.

When he caught Hicks, Berroos accomplished his career milestone of 1,000 strikeouts.

UP NEXT

On Wednesday, the Yankees’ Gerit Cole (12-7, 3.49 ERA) will be up against the Blue Jays’ Mitch White (1-6, 5.12 ERA). Cole needs five more strikeouts to beat Ron Guidry’s record of 248 strikeouts in a single season, which he set in 1978.

Do you think the Yankees can repeat their AL East success in the postseason?

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