NEW YORK — Aaron Judge lit a sinker and sent the ball into the left-field stands. Immediately after, he began touring the bases, with 60 homers on his bill this season.
Unassuming throughout a season that already has him tied with none other than Babe Ruth, Judge gave himself an unusual luxury: He emerged from the dugout again to more applause.
“I really didn’t want to do it, especially since we were down and the homer had been a solo one,” said Judge, whose drive leading off the ninth inning just cut the Yankees’ deficit to three runs.
Eleven minutes later, Judge and the Yankees had more reason to celebrate.
Giancarlo Stanton hit a game-ending grand slam and completed New York’s surprising five-run ninth inning, which came from behind to beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 9-8 on Tuesday.
“I think I went crazy,” Judge said. “It was a typical Giancarlo Stanton line, straight as a laser beam and about 10 meters high across the outfield. I had a ringside seat to see this. I think we all freaked out on the team. So did everyone in the the stadium”.
Judge moved within a home run of the American League record for a season, set by Roger Maris. He found the sinker of right-hander Will Crowe (5-10) and sent his shot 430 feet from the plate.
The ball landed in the bleachers in left field, bringing New York within 8-5.
Judge tied Babe Ruth’s 60 home runs with the Yankees in 1927 to set a major league record that stood for 37 years.
Interestingly, Crowe’s great-grandfather’s brother was Red Ruffing, a Hall of Famer and Babe Ruth’s teammate with the Yankees in the 1930s.
Stanton hit a grand slam off Crowe to give Aroldis Chapman (3-3) the win and spark a celebration at Yankee Stadium.
For the Pirates, the Dominicans Rodolfo Castro 4-1 with a run scored and three RBIs, Oneil Cruz 2-0 with a run scored. The Venezuelan Diego Castillo 2-1 with a scored.
For the Yankees, the Venezuelans Gleyber Torres 4-2 with a run scored, Oswald Peraza 0-0 with a run scored, Oswaldo Cabrera 3-0 with two runs scored.