TORONTO — The Yankees beat the Blue Jays on Monday night, but some side-eye glances from Aaron Judge were caught on camera during the at-bat that caused a stir. Blue Jays are weird, they said. The Yankees said it was okay.

So what exactly happened?

In the eighth inning of a 7-4 win over the Blue Jays at Rogers Center, Sportsnet TV cameras pointed to Judge, the reigning American League MVP, watching the visitors’ drills before first. pitch between his at-bats. He would eventually hit a home run off Toronto reliever Jay Jackson in a 3-2 skid in a 7-0 win over New York.

During the Blue Jays’ telecast, the cameras showed the umpire looking toward the dugout. Sports network broadcasters Dan Shulman and Buck Martinez said he did it “more than once” and wondered aloud what he saw.

“what is that?” Shulman said.

“Where does he see it?” Martinez said.

Blue Jays broadcasters never thought what Judge might be seeing. But the huge shadow of the Houston Astros’ 2017 sign-stealing scandal still hangs over the game today, so it’s not hard to discern the implications of this recording, as Judge watched the dugout for clues as to what pitches might be coming. His way.

What are they saying Blue Jays.

After the game, Blue Jays manager John Schneider was asked if he knew Judge’s recording. He said he had seen it and said, “It’s very strange that Mata is looking in that direction.” The manager said it was the first time he noticed the Blue Jays doing the umpire.

“Obviously he’s looking in that direction for a reason,” Schneider said. I think[we’re]going to dive in a little bit tonight and tomorrow and make sure we’re doing everything we can to not expose ourselves to trends or spots or fads or anything like that. It was very strange to see him look there before the scream came.

Schneider was asked if there was a reasonable explanation for why the umpire could have looked that way during the at-bat.

“I am not the judge of Aaron,” he said. But he’s looking for an off-pitch spot in the at-bat for some reason, so you have to ask him.

After the game, Jackson told Sportsnet’s Hazel Maye, “I’ve never seen hitters do that before (in my experience), so I can’t say what he’s doing.” …we’ll see what works from here. We’ll have a different game plan next time.

What are the Yankees saying?

When the judge was first asked what he might be seeing, the reporter seemed to have no idea what he was talking about.

“Why?” said the judge.

The servant chuckled a little to himself after being asked again. He said his Yankees teammates are still yelling at plate umpire Clint Vondrak, who ejected manager Aaron Boone during an umpire’s at-bat. The umpire said he simply wanted them to shut up and hit it safe and was still looking into the dugout to see which mouths were running.

“There was a lot of yelling from our dugout,” he said, according to a clip posted on Twitter by the YES Network. .’ I was kindly trying to see who was yelling in the dugout. 6 – It’s okay. Brown is thrown, now let’s get to work.”


Was it weird? for sure. Were Martinez and Shulman right to point out? of course. That’s their job. And does any baseball player deserve the benefit of the doubt following the sign-stealing revelations of the past half-decade? Probably not. It didn’t help the Yankees’ case that Judge completely shut down a 462-foot home run in the seconds after watching the Yankees dig.

If you’re Toronto, you have every right to be skeptical — or at least to stir the pot and get under the skin of your division rivals. If you’re the Yankees, you wonder whether the explanations from Judge and Boone are enough, or maybe Judge is looking into the dugout to see what pitch is next.

Actually, let’s think for a moment that the judge might actually be looking for a sign. That, in itself, is not necessarily illegal. The Yankees could have used a signal to relay that to the umpire in real time after learning how Jackson was pointing his words. It would not be a crime to do so. Still, it might be best to discount the Yankees’ excuses and look at the rest of the game.

Were other Yankees pitchers looking in the dugout, too? Did Gleyber Torres or Anthony Volpe take a gander at the rest of the game before the game? Sportsnet didn’t call anyone else, and if the Yankees cracked the code, they would have told the rest of their batters, right? – Cutie

(Aaron Judge leads the Blue Jays home on Monday. Top photo: Cole Burston/Getty Images)

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