Legends On Deck

Austin And Judge Make History In Debut; Yanks Defeat Rays 8-4

Aaron Judge ialong with Tyler Austin, made MLB history in their debut on Saturday afternoon. (Photo: Gabe Rodriguez)

Aaron Judge along with Tyler Austin, made MLB history in their debut on Saturday afternoon. (Photo: Gabe Rodriguez)

On a day that the 1996 World Series Team was honored, two of the most talked about New York Yankee prospects finally made their Major League debuts in the Bronx.

In front of 41,682 fans, Tyler Austin and Aaron Judge made their debut in pinstripes; and it was a truly historical day. Tyler Austin started at first base and batted seventh in the lineup while Aaron Judge played right field and was eighth batter.

RHP Masahiro Tanaka took the start for the Yankees as the Rays sent RHP Matt Andriese to the mound for the start.

In the second inning, with two outs, Tyler Austin walked up to the plate for his first Major League at-bat and although went down 0-2 in the count early, fought back and crushed his first career homerun to right field to give the Yankees a 1-0 lead.

Tyler Austin crushed a homerun to right field in his first Major League at-bat. (Photo: Gabe Rodriguez)

Tyler Austin crushed a homerun to right field in his first Major League at-bat. (Photo: Gabe Rodriguez)

Aaron Judge then followed Austin’s lead and just five pitches after the first homer, he then blasted his first career homerun to center field over Monument Park; extending the Yanks lead to 2-0.

This was the first time in Major League Baseball history that two players, who were making their big league debuts, hit back to back homeruns in their first at-bats.

Tanaka seemed was perfect through three and one-third innings before giving up a three run homer to Brad Miller to give the Rays a 3-2 lead.

In the bottom of the fourth, Starlin Castro then tied it up for the Yankees with a solo homer to center field fora 3-3 ballgame.

In the fifth inning, Aaron Judge got his second Major League hit and would later score after a three run homerun by Aaron Hicks fora 6-3 Yankees’ lead.

Andriese’s day would end after allowing four homeruns in five innings of work; in his first twenty starts he had allowed just five homeruns.

Rays were able to tack on another run in the top of the sixth as Brad Miller hit is second homer of the day, 22nd of the season, to make it 6-4.

In the bottom of the sixth, Austin got his second career hit and then his first Major League stolen base as he took second with Austin Romine at the plate.

But, the Yankees were done just yet as Didi Gregorius hit a two run homer in the seventh inning for a 8-4 ballgame which would be enough to capture the victory-the fourth in a row for the Yankees.

Tanaka pitched seven innings allowing four runs on five hits while striking out eight batters and advanced to 9-4 on the season.

The New Kids on the Block: 

Tyler Austin has had quite the journey through the Minor Leagues since being drafted in the 13th Round of the 2010 MLB Draft. Battling a lingering wrist injury that slowed down his progress the last few seasons. The twenty-four year old began the 2016 season with Double-A Trenton where he hit .260 in fifty games before being promoted to Triple-A Scranton in June.

Austin’s bat then exploded as he became a dominant force at the plate, hitting an impressive .323 in fifty-seven games while hitting 24 doubles and 13 homers while racking up 49 RBIs.

As for Judge he was drafted in the first round, 32nd overall, in the 2013 MLB Draft while playing at Cal State University-Fresno. The twenty-four year old has been ranked in MLB’s Top 100 since being drafted and working his way through the Yankees’ Organization. Judge joined Triple-A Scranton last season and started the 2016 season in Scranton as well. So far this season the outfielder has hit .270 with 19 homers and 65 RBIs.

Bethany Cohen

Bethany Cohen

Senior Editor at Legends On Deck®
Bethany is a Graduate of the University of South Florida and currently resides in Tampa. She is a die-hard Yankees' fan and has been a freelance writer for six years. She has covered the Yankees' Minor League System since 2010 and also does freelance work for Examiner.com and CBS Local Tampa Bay. Follow her on Twitter @TampaBethany
Bethany Cohen