Aaron Judge went hitless at the plate in Game 3 of his New York Yankees’ ALDS matchup with the Cleveland Indians.
And still, he managed to make the most important play of the day.
“I had to do something,” Judge said afterward. “I wasn’t making any contact at the plate, so you have to make an impact on the game somehow. Luckily I was able to do it on defense.”
Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor gave a Masahiro Tanaka offering a ride to the right-field seats, but didn’t manage to keep the ball out of the reach of the 6’8″ outfielder.
With his team facing elimination, Judge leaped and robbed Lindor of a two-run home in the sixth inning of a scoreless game.
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) October 9, 2017
Francisco Lindor: Go-ahead home run!
Aaron Judge: OVERRULED pic.twitter.com/7FqR67KbOp
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) October 9, 2017
This picture’s great.
LMAOOO is that Zack Hample that Aaron Judge took the ball away from?? pic.twitter.com/hnrulepLU9
— Sung Min Kim (@sung_minkim) October 9, 2017
That guy in the yellow is controversial ballhawk Zack Hample, and those two in the “Ready for October” shirts definitely don’t appear ready for October.
Hample is so hated by baseball fans for doing stuff like pushing kids out of the way for baseballs and sneaking into the military-personnel-only Fort Bragg Game in 2016 that even those pulling for the Indians weren’t disappointed in the play.
very few things unite twitter like zack hample getting wrecked
— Joon Lee (@iamjoonlee) October 9, 2017
Listen I want the Indians to win but I’m not going to be upset about Aaron Judge taking a homer away from Hample https://t.co/fXLNUqsm99
— Marc Normandin🌹 (@Marc_Normandin) October 9, 2017
My entire timeline: AW MAN THE INDIANS NEED RUNS
[2 seconds later after seeing a freeze frame of the catch]
NEVERMIND FUCK ZACK HAMPLE
— Whitney McIntosh (@WhitneyM02) October 9, 2017
“With Lindor up, you never know what he’s gonna do,” Judge said after the game. “He has a lot of pop. It went up in the air, and I thought I had a little bit of room. Once I felt the wall, I had a 6-inch jump. Right off the bat, I felt it was gonna stay in the park and I had a good chance at it.”
An inning and a half later, Yankees first baseman Greg Bird hit a solo shot that would stand as all the game’s offense in a 1-0 victory.
Cleveland leads the best-of-five series 2-1.