Yankees keep Aaron Judge out of lineup after injury scare as tensions heighten

Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees
Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees / Adam Hunger/GettyImages

It's the right decision. There's no need to put Aaron Judge in a precarious position after he took a fastball off the hand on Tuesday night against the Baltimore Orioles. But that doesn't mean New York Yankees fans are feeling any better about it.

Judge is not in Wednesday's lineup against the O's after manager Aaron Boone revealed the slugger was day-to-day. Though Judge took some hacks before Wednesday's game, he's still sore, so Trent Grisham will get the start.

There's been much drama surrounding this situation. It was obvious Albert Suarez had no intention of hitting Judge (especially since it happened in a 1-2 count), but the right-hander was erratic throughout his start, hurling pitches out of the strike zone 49% of the time. He was all over the place.

And it didn't change with the bullpen. Keegan Akin also hit Gleyber Torres with a dangerous pitch up and in, which probably played a role in Judge calling out the Orioles in his postgame interview.

Whatever the case, tensions are heigthening before the second matchup of the three-game set. Whether there was ill intent or not, neither team is happy (the O's were upset with Juan Soto colliding with Jordan Westburg on the base paths) and both fan bases are riled up beyond belief.

Yankees keep Aaron Judge out of lineup after injury scare as tensions heighten

It's a bummer overall. Judge getting a breather isn't the worst thing in the world and would've be viewed unfavorable on a random night, but there will be concerns until he can prove he's healthy by producing in the lineup.

But even more upsetting is the fact that Wednesday is Gerrit Cole's 2024 debut after he went down with elbow inflammation in late February. The Yankees' ace got the call back to the bigs after passing all his tests, specifically with his dominant rehab assignments at Triple-A.

The whole band was about to be back together, and then a freak situation derailed it. Worse things have happened — the biggest takeaway is that Judge doesn't have a long-term injury — but it'd be fun if the best players didn't have to keep getting shuffled in and out of the picture.

As much as it's fun to intensify a division rivalry, let there be no funny business on Wednesday. There doesn't need to be any retribution for Judge. There definitely doesn't need to be retribution for Westburg, especially since Soto was equally in danger of hurting himself in that scenario.

Let's just see some good clean baseball that ends with a Yankees win. Thanks.