Spring Training is the time to try new and weird things, and this afternoon, Aaron Boone has decided to bat Aaron Judge leadoff against left-hander Brian Johnson. This isn’t one of those “bat him leadoff so he gets his at-bats quickly and we can get him out of the game” spring situations either. Judge may bat leadoff against lefties during the regular season.
“Boone was obviously open-minded and asking a lot of questions,” said Brian Cashman to Erik Boland, adding it was Boone who “initiated” the conversation about hitting Judge leadoff. “He’s going to take advantage of seeing what it looks like.”
I’ve said this before, but I don’t love the idea of hitting Judge leadoff, mostly because he’ll bat with the bases empty more often. Doing it full-time is a no-go for me. But against lefties? Given Brett Gardner’s splits, that’s at least worth discussing. Today the Yankees are doing to put it into practice. We’ll see how it goes. Here is the Red Sox’s lineup and here is the Yankees’ lineup:
- RF Aaron Judge
- DH Giancarlo Stanton
- 1B Greg Bird
- C Gary Sanchez
- CF Aaron Hicks
- SS Didi Gregorius
- 3B Brandon Drury
- 2B Neil Walker
- LF Brett Gardner
RHP Masahiro Tanaka
Available Pitchers: RHP Dellin Betances, RHP Cale Coshow, RHP Matt Frawley, RHP Tommy Kahnle, LHP Wade LeBlanc, RHP Andrew Schwaab, LHP Chasen Shreve, and RHP Andrew Sosebee.
Available Position Players: C Erik Kratz, C Jorge Saez, 1B Chris Gittens, IF Angel Aguilar, IF Abi Avelino, IF Diego Castillo, OF Rashad Crawford, OF Jeff Hendrix, OF Billy McKinney, and OF Zach Zehner.
Another lovely day down in Tampa. Couldn’t’ve asked for better weather this spring. Today’s game will begin at 1:05pm ET and you can watch live on YES, ESPN, and MLB.tv. Enjoy the game.