Injury Shadows Loom Over Aaron Judge’s MVP Hopes: Can the Yankees’ Captain Overcome the Odds with Juan Soto in the Lead?

Bronx Faithful is once again finding themselves hoping again. Their beloved the New York Yankees finally have an explosive batter to support Aaron Judge.

The arrival of Juan Soto has been met with a lot of cheers, not just by the fans but by experts as well. This union has been such a hit that Soto and Judge are already on top of the AL MVP race. However, even the most ardent fans know things could go south at any moment.

This isn’t an alarming call nor an effort to raise cries for help. It’s a simple observation regarding how the Yankees have done recently. They were 35-25 when Judge got injured last season, then they fell hard that by the time he returned, they were 54-48.

So their captain’s presence is important, but the recent injury woes tell a grim tale. A tale that might require “constant maintenance” by the Yankees management.

Aaron Judge’s growing injury list a cause of concern for the Pinstripes 

In the past few years, Judge’s injury list has gotten scarier. All Rise’s fall to injuries has become a consistent part of his story. From 2021 to 2023 Judge injured the following parts – Side, Back, Lower Body, and Hips (twice), and then that big toe injury in 2023. All of that has raised a tough question – is Judge’s body breaking down too quickly?

According to most odds, Judge remains one of the favorites for the AL MVP award. In fact, his only serious competition is his teammate Juan Soto. But where Soto played the entire 162 games last season, Judge only played 106. But that isn’t the issue here. It’s the recent comments of Judge that have raised some eyebrows.

Max Goodman of NJ Media reported the comments of Judge on his toe. The slugger said that his right toe may need “constant maintenance” throughout his career now. “Anything with injuries like that, you’ve just got to stay on top of it so it doesn’t flare up again or something doesn’t happen again,” Judge expressed.

Could that maintenance reduce some of the hard-hitting abilities of Judge? Though the massively talented superstar has never been shy of challenges, his Spring Training form is ringing some bells now.

All Rise’s Spring Training drought leaves the fans worried 

According to MLB.com, till now Judge has been on the plate nine times. Out of those times, the captain has only managed two hits. He has 1 RBI and 3 runs, however, the scary part is Judge’s OPS. It’s hovering around .697 – a far cry from Judge’s usual levels (He had 1.019 OPS in 2023). Could All Rise’s toe injury be affecting his hitting form?

That’s something that the Yankees need to put more focus on. Despite strengthening their hitting lineup, they can’t afford an underperforming Aaron Judge. Similarly, Judge can’t afford to continue on this form if he wants to win the MVP award again. The stakes are too high this time around.

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