Aaron Judge clobbered his 60th home run of the season off Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Wil Crowe on Tuesday, which helped spark a big New York Yankees’ 9-8 comeback victory.
Crowe’s offering to Judge came on a 3-1 count. It was Judge’s third home run against the Pirates of his career and came at an opportune time. Later in the inning, Giancarlo Stanton would hit the walk-off grand slam.
"He did what he was supposed to do with it," he said of his pitch to Judge. "3-1 count, I’m not going to put him on. I felt like I wanted to go after him. Started away, came back in. He put a good swing on a bad pitch."
Crowe was a relatively unknown pitcher when he stepped onto the bump and allowed the Judge dinger. He is in his second season with the Pirates after initially being selected in the second round of the MLB Draft by the Washington Nationals.
Not only is he an arm in the Pirates’ bullpen, but Crowe is the distant relative of Yankees legend Red Ruffing. The Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher is the great-great uncle of Crowe.
Ruffing was Babe Ruth’s teammate on the Yankees in the 1930s. He was a six-time World Series champion and six-time All-Star. He was 231-124 with a 3.47 ERA and 1,526 strikeouts in 15 seasons wit the Yankees. He played 22 years in baseball altogether, additionally with the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox. Ruffing served in the military in 1943 and 1944.
Crowe visited Ruffing’s plaque at Monument Park at Yankee Stadium before the game.
Judge now has just as many home runs as Ruth did in 1927. Judge is also working on his own American League Triple Crown case. He now leads the AL in home runs, RBI (128) and batting average (.316).
The Associated Press contributed to this report.