Aaron Judge belts 50th HR to break rookie record

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He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. That means Judge has now tied the all-time single-season rookie home run record.

Before the game, Yankees manager Joe Girardi was asked about Judge's pursuit of McGwire's rookie home run record.

Judge's almost unprecedented power output has been a revelation for the Yankees.

The 6-foot-7, 282-pound slugger homered in his first big league at bat and proceeded to hit 30 homeruns before the All-Star break. "He doesn't need to try to hit home runs". He has included that batting average in his pregame notes throughout 2017.

Judge's two-run blast in the third inning to the opposite field against Royals righty Jakob Junis also gave him at least one home run against every American League opponent this season.

"I am swinging at the right pitches, getting into good counts and swinging at the right pitches", Judge said. He hit just three home runs in the month of August before turning things around in September with 13 so far this month. Despite a.931 OPS in exhibition games, the Yankees did not hand Judge the job over Aaron Hicks until the final days of spring training.

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