After a first half in which he looked less like an ordinary ballplayer and more like a dinger-smashing demigod, Aaron Judge has suffered through a second half in which he has looked mostly like a slumping rookie with some trouble adjusting to the big-league curve. This is not the end of Judge, and it’s not necessarily indicative of a meaningful change in true talent or a lasting struggle, and it’s everything else that everyone knows about rookies and slumps. That said, it is still not particularly fun. But Judge finally, for the first time in weeks, has reason to celebrate something—he has at last put an end to his record-setting single-season streak of consecutive games with at least one strikeout.
Tonight, after 37 games of strikeouts, Judge had none. In four plate appearances against the Tigers, he singled with three walks. Good streak-breaking timing, as this meant that he came up one game short of setting another record—the all-time streak of consecutive games with at least strikeout, rather than the single-season one. Instead, Judge has simply tied this record, set by pitcher Bill Stoneman in 1971-72:
During his strikeout streak, the right fielder hit .178/.337/.370. For the sake of Judge and all who appreciate the large sweet dinger boy, may the end of the streak begin to signal an end to his struggles.