While Tanaka was not all that good against the Red Sox this season, he has a fine track record in the postseason, coming into the game with a tidy 1.44 ERA in 25 playoff innings. "Every single pitch, they're locked in", Judge said.
The sample size is as tiny as Judge is tall, but it nonetheless paints a grim picture for opposing pitchers past, present and future.
Games 3 and 4 are at Yankee Stadium on Monday and Tuesday nights, with Game 5 back in Boston on Thursday, if necessary. And his contact hasn't been cheap, either. On Saturday, meanwhile, three of the four balls he put in play went 109 miles per hour or faster. "I've been fortunate to be patient and find some pitches like that from him, and I've been able to hit them well".
Aaron Hicks didn't play in Saturday's 6-2 win over the Red Sox in Game 2 of the ALDS, as the Yankees evened the series at Fenway Park.
Both were wins by the reigning World Series champion Astros and both ended with former Toronto closer getting former Toronto third baseman Josh Donaldson to hit into the final out of the game. It's a timetable that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman later admitted was "off considerably", and resulted in a regular, frustrating routine for Judge with reporters: daily questions on the state of his wrist, non-committal answers as to when he'd return, rinse and repeat. He has one more chance to get his act together against a team that is obviously in his head. "I guess he told you guys he slipped or something like that". I was ready to go.
"Once he came back and played that first game against Boston [on September 18], when he said I'm 100% healthy, I said let's go", Thames said.
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Judge hit just.220 with one home run in 51 plate appearances to finish the year, but Thames wasn't anxious about the down numbers.
"I'm not sure. I didn't execute enough pitches, and that was that", Price said.
We can deal with the larger issue of Price's place on the Red Sox but right now the immediate issue is a sad and pitiful one with an uncomplicated and uncontroversial solution.
"He's a monster", said Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes, who has yet to face him this postseason.
Sanchez also had a solo shot in the second inning to give NY a 2-0 lead. Gary Sanchez led off the second inning with another solo shot, and Price ran into further trouble with the bottom of the order.
The All-Star outfielder was making noise for what he did after the game, too. "He makes those guys better, they make him better". Though he went deep four times, he hit.188 and struck out 27 times in 57 plate appearances. According to Statcast, it was the longest measured home run ever at the historic venue. "You go out there, make your pitches, play the cat and mouse game, and see where you end up", he said. "I mean, this is what it's all about in a lot of ways". He literally can't: No player on any team is going to come out and tell a reporter in the middle of a playoff series exactly what advantage they're trying to exploit to take out a superstar.