TORONTO — The waiting is the hardest part.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. lined a walk-off RBI-single in the bottom of the 10th to give the Blue Jays a 3-2 win over the Yankees at Rogers Centre Monday night. Toronto also held Aaron Judge homerless. The division-winning celebration and history will have to wait another day.
The loss snapped a seven-game winning streak for the Yankees (94-59) and delayed what the te
am hope is inevitable. The Bombers came into the game with a magic number of two, meaning they need one win in this three-game series to clinch the American League East and the No. 2 seed in the American League playoffs. The Blue Jays (87-67) dropped their magic number to clinch a playoff spot to three.
For the sixth straight game, Judge did not hit a home run. He remains at 60 for the regular season and one shy of the American League single-season and Yankee franchise record set by Roger Maris in 1961.
Monday was a little different than the last five.
Every time he came to bat over the last five nights, the sold-out crowd at the Stadium rose and held up their phones, hoping to record history. There was an eerie quiet of expectation as each pitch was thrown and then — even for doubles — a groan of disappointment. His family has been in the ballpark since the team returned from a road trip to Milwaukee on Tuesday night and Maris’ family has also been there to wait and congratulate Judge if he breaks their father’s record.
It’s been a lot, but Judge has continued to downplay it.
“I’ve played in New York for six years now, this is par for the course, especially the playoff games we’ve had, opening days are hectic,” Judge said. “It’s just another game to me.”
Monday there were cheers and some boos for the one walk, but the Blue Jays are playing for a postseason spot, so their fans, most of the 34,307, were thrilled to see Judge held within the ballpark.