The New York Yankees started off the 2022 season with a bang.
Led by Aaron Judge, who had a historic season, New York finished the regular season with 99 wins and their first division title since 2019.
However, there were some moments where the Yankees appeared to be losing their rhythm.
After holding a 15.5-game lead in the American League East, the Yankees saw that margin begin to shrink, and it shrunk all the way down to four games.
Their slide began after the All-Star break.
But a certain statistic shows just how the Yankees avoided an epic collapse.
Judge continued at his MVP pace after the All-Star break, slashing .349/.502/.785.
The same could not be said for his Yankees teammates, who slashed .223/.292/.360.
Aaron Judge after All-Star break:
That is a batting line equivalent to that of the 100-loss Pirates.
Judge was the only thing standing between the Yankees and an epic collapse.
— Paul Hembekides (@PaulHembo) November 17, 2022
How Judge Saved The Yankees
While Judge may not have been the sole reason the Yankees avoided a collapse, his epic chase for 62 home runs certainly helped them out.
Without Judge, the Yankees likely would have been in a lot more trouble.
Judge’s 62 home runs broke the American League single-season record, which had belonged to Yankees legend Roger Maris for over six decades.
The Yankees picked things up a little towards the end of the season, but Judge was carrying much of the load.
The slash line posted by Judge’s Yankees teammates is equivalent to that of the 100-loss Pittsburgh Pirates in the second half.
Therefore, it can easily be surmised that Judge might have saved the Yankees from their impending doom, that is, until the ALCS, when they were swept by the Houston Astros.