The judge struck Paxton’s second throw, a thigh offering in the middle of the plate, in the net above Monument Park. And while stiff necks are generally not something to worry about, when one of the judge’s body parts barks slightly, it attracts attention.
“Still not 100%, but good enough to play,” said the judge. “I was there to go get bats and see how it was. All good. ”
Asked about the origin of his stiff neck, the judge offered a simple explanation.
“Sometimes you wake up on the wrong side of the bed,” said the judge. “The biggest one, I couldn’t see the launcher. Could turn my neck to see the pitcher…. Now I can see the launcher. ”
The judge missed all 1.0 spring training with a fractured upper right rib that was originally diagnosed as a shoulder problem and would not have been ready had the season started on March 26 as planned.
Then, after showing up for Spring 2.0 training, the judge said he was only ready to be eliminated from an intrasquad game on Saturday with a stiff neck. He did not touch the field on Monday, took BP on Tuesday and returned to the right field on Wednesday. He has the Friday night intrasquad match at the Stadium and the exhibition games on Saturday, Sunday and Monday to prepare for July 23 opening day in Washington against Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer.
After the judge scored Paxton, which Boone scored on Wednesday to start the second game of the season, with a high-flying circuit, Giancarlo Stanton sent a laser just inside the left field foul pole.
“It was good to see these guys get these hits,” said Paxton. “Too bad it’s not mine.”
While Boone was confident that the judge would return to the lineup Wednesday night, he had to watch him go through a pre-game training session to make sure he was playable. Another day of inactivity would not have been the worst thing, but was not necessary.
Having Judge and Stanton for most of the next 60 game season would lighten the rest of the squad, which includes Gary Sanchez and Gleyber Torres.
“To see these guys healthy and on the job, obviously we feel like they’re going to do a lot of damage,” said Boone of Stanton, who was limited to 18 games a year ago due a tight left bicep and a sprain. right knee, and the judge, who played in 102 games thanks to a left oblique tension. “I hope they can go there and do what they can.”
After the first judge’s homerun, the first judge walked, fouled and failed. The judge demonstrated his defensive skills when he fought the sun on two right-hand fly balls and made the catches easy. He said he was happier to draw Paxton Drive than the circuit.
“I think we watched it [Tuesday] that he was pretty much there, “said Boone. “He had a good day at work [Tuesday]. Make sure it came in with the necessary improvement. ”
If the judge plays the Mets at Citi Field on Saturday, it will be the first time since last year’s ALCS game 6 against the Astros that he will face a team in another major league uniform.