Aaron Judge powers Yankees to 4-0 win over Twins

Aaron Judge needed a throw to set the tone of the game.

With two outs in the first inning, Judge swung at the first pitch he saw from Twins starter Pablo Lopez and took every piece of it, crushing it 467 feet into the third deck in left field. His New York Yankees were from there in a 4-0 win over the Twins Wednesday night before an announced crowd of 22,235 at Target Field in downtown Minneapolis.

“To me, it looked like a Home Run Derby home run,” Lopez said of Judge’s 467-foot blast.

The Yankees have now won the first two of the teams’ three-game series.

Judge was dominant, going 4-for-4 with a homer, a trio of doubles, a walk and two RBIs.

“That’s why he’s one of the greatest players,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said.

And after his homer, Judge’s Yankees (29-15) were able to score a few more runs against Lopez, who allowed three total on 10 hits while fanning three in 6 1/3 innings.

While the Yankees managed to string together hits against Lopez, he managed to keep the damage relatively light and keep the Twins (24-18) within striking distance.

New York got another run in the second inning, when with one out, Gleyber Torres, Jose Trevino and Oswaldo Cabrera hit consecutive singles, and Anthony Volpe scored Torres with a sacrifice fly to center field on a play by Willi Castro. lost track. outs and was late to make the throw to home plate. But Lopez got Juan Soto to fly out to end the inning with just one run scored.

Castro, who also caught that fly, threw the ball into the stands out of frustration.

Baldelli said he had a conversation with Castro about this situation after the game.

As far as damage limitation goes, it was a similar story for Lopez in the third inning as Judge led off the game with a double, Alex Verdugo followed with a single and Giancarlo Stanton hit another single that scored Judge for a 3-0 Yankees. lead.

But Lopez got Anthony Rizzo to ground into a 4-6-3 double play, then got Torres to fly out to get out of the inning with just one run scored despite the Yankees threatening to do more damage.

“Today was a chore, that’s probably one of the simplest ways to put it,” Lopez said. “I had to deal with a lot of traffic. I looked up at the board and saw how many hits they had, so it was a lot of high leverage pitches, stressful situations, where I’m glad I was able to navigate some of them and limit some of the damage that could have gotten out of control and very ugly.

While Lopez managed to keep the Twins’ deficit relatively manageable, the Minnesota offense was only able to string together two hits – an Edouard Julien double in the third inning and a Carlos Correa single in the fourth – against the starter. Yankees Marcus Stroman in his six. sleeves.

And the Twins only really threatened once in the second inning, when with one out, Correa committed an error and Stroman walked Willi Castro. After Carlos Santana grounded out, Stroman walked Alex Kirilloff, but Jose Miranda grounded out on a fielder’s choice to end the inning.

Lopez returned for the seventh inning and forced Volpe to ground out to officially end his day, leaving the game with the Twins trailing 3-0. Kody Funderburk came on in relief but gave up consecutive doubles to Soto and Judge. Judge’s double scored Soto as the Yankees took a 4-0 advantage.

Funderburk bounced back by pitching a scoreless eighth inning.

Josh Staumont followed up by pitching a scoreless ninth inning.

But offensively, the Twins didn’t do any better against the Yankees bullpen than they did against Stroman. Luke Weaver pitched two scoreless frames in the seventh and eighth innings, and Caleb Ferguson sent out Castro, Santana and Manny Margot to close out the game in the ninth.

In all, the Twins recorded just four hits Wednesday night.