They are excellent all-around players known mainly for their power.
However, they are actually very complete ballplayers.
Conversations among fans often extend to which one is better than the other.
While they are both elite performers, one of them is clearly better and more complete, so the debate ends rather quickly.
Let’s find out.
The Case For Stanton
Judge is very, very good, but for all his power, Stanton may be even more powerful.
For starters, Stanton’s career-high in homers is 59, in 2017 with the Miami Marlins.
It’s hard to put that in perspective, but if you believe steroids have absolutely no place in the game, then Stanton is very, very close to the single-season record with that mark five years ago.
In addition, Stanton has the hardest-hit ball in each of the last seven seasons (the Statcast era).
He has the record for the hardest hit ball since 2015, at 122.2 mph.
Stanton is also a sneaky good defender.
I don't know why some people claim Stanton hasn't been a good defender in his career.
Stanton has a 49 DRS and a 37.8 UZR in his career. Stanton also has 6 OAA since 2016.
— Dillard Barnhart (@BarnHasSpoken2) July 31, 2021
The Yankees have opted to have him play designated hitter mostly, because he is injury-prone and want to preserve his health.
However, he does have 49 career Defensive Runs Saved, or DRS, and has a solid arm.
Fans usually give Stanton a hard time because of his injuries (he did miss most of the 2019 and 2020 seasons with several ailments), but he is a really solid hitter (.268/.358/.543 for his career), a good defender, and has had his fair share of postseason moments.
The Case For Judge
Stanton may have more power, but Judge is the (slightly) superior hitter.
His career line is .276/.386/.554, and his wRC+ is 151.
The wRC+ stat means weighted Runs Created Plus, and is an offensive metric that considers all outcomes and contributions, adjusts them to era, ballpark, and other factors, and the result is a single number that describes the hitter’s performance.
In wRC+, 100 is considered average, so Judge has been, over the course of his brilliant career, 51 percent better than the average.
Stanton is also a monster, but with a 142 career wRC+, he is a little behind Judge.
Judge is also an elite right fielder, with 59 DRS in significantly fewer games than Stanton.
Neither player is a burner, but Judge is a bit faster and more athletic, too.
If the Yankees end up extending him, there is a good chance he is eventually named the team captain, and he would be the first one since Derek Jeter in 2014.
Judge and Stanton are two of the premier sluggers in the game.
Both of them can hit a ball out of the park at any given moment, and can impact the game in several ways.
Stanton has more power, but Judge is a better all-around hitter and defender.
The Yankees are truly lucky to employ both.
If we are forced to choose one, it would be Judge.
The only aspect of the game in which Stanton is better is in the power department, but with 158 homers in 572 games, Judge is not too shabby.
Aaron Judge. Elite on offense. Elite on defense. Fantastic teammate. Very humble. Great person off the field
Extend extend extend pic.twitter.com/4DtWmtxB8t
— Dan Rourke (@DanAlanRourke) December 14, 2021
He is clearly the better player of the two.