Aaron Judge might not have had nefarious intentions with his widely-debated peeks against the Blue Jays, but Bret Boone can at least see why it caused a stir.
Cameras caught Judge peeking towards the Yankees dugout during an eighth inning at-bat in Monday’s win in Toronto. The Blue Jays broadcast made note of it, and when Judge responded by hitting a 462-foot moonshot, cheating debates ramped up.
The Blue Jays pitcher who served up the pitch Judge launched, Jay Jackson, admitted he was tipping pitches. Still, the Blue Jays posited that Judge could have been receiving signals from first base coach Travis Chapman. Judge, for his part, said he was looking to see who in the Yankee dugout was chirping the umpire – an argument Toronto wasn't buying.
Boone, the older brother of Yankees manager Aaron Boone, offered his take on the incident on “The Bret Boone Podcast.”
"When something happens to a player of that caliber, yes, all eyes are going to be on you. People are going to be breaking down, they’re going to be going through film, does he do this all the time? Nobody has come up with any other time, so it’s very rare. He hit a home run earlier in the game, and his eyes weren’t moving, but that particular at-bat, four times. ...
“Each player knows going into that scenario that if you are caught, there is a price to be paid …” Boone said, noting that at some point that player usually would get plunked. “As far as the Aaron Judge thing that’s going on, I don’t know, I wasn't there. But I can just say, from a player standpoint and what other players see, optically, it was not a good look – especially when you end up hitting the ball 480 feet.”
Bret Boone mentioned that whether it’s from peeking at the catcher or getting them from a base coach, if an opponent is caught looking for signs, it’s going to draw the ire of the other team.
Since Jackson was, in fact, tipping his pitches, then it is certainly plausible that Judge wasn’t trying to skirt any rules.
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