Watch Highlights: Aaron Judge Wins Home Run Derby 2017 Full view

MIAMI, FL - JULY 10: Aaron Judge #99 of the New York Yankees hugs Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the National League during the T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Marlins Park on July 10, 2017 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

Watch Highlights: Aaron Judge Wins Home Run Derby 2017

Aaron Judge proved to everyone on Monday night why he’s one of the greatest rookies in Major League Baseball this year by winning the Home Run Derby at Marlins Park.

Aaron Judge Home Run Derby

The 25-year-old New York Yankees outfielder — who led the major league in homers at the All-Star Break with 30 — smacked another 47 home runs in Monday’s competition, including four that traveled more than 500 feet.

“It was a blast. I enjoyed every minute of it,” Judge said, “Watching all the other guys swing. Coming here early, talking to the media. Everything about today was fantastic.”

Indeed it was a blast — both literally and figuratively — for the Yankees star, who recorded the longest homer of the Derby at approximately 513 feet.

Judge was booed by the Miami crowd of 37,027 during the pregame introductions, although the heavily pro-Marlins fans ultimately cheered for the rookie after he beat Minnesota Twins third baseman Miguel Sano in the final round.

“I was expecting it,” Judge said of the initial boos. “They’re cheering on their guy. They want their guys to win. It’s all part of the atmosphere. I enjoyed it all.”

Neither of the two Marlins players competing in the Derby got very far, however. Defending champion Giancarlo Stanton was eliminated in the first round by Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez 17-16, despite hitting two homers longer than 440 feet to earn an extra 30 seconds and pull within two. However, the Marlins outfielder only managed one long ball in his additional time, and Sanchez advanced. In 2016, Stanton smacked 61 home runs — 20 of them in the final round — to win the Derby at San Diego’s Petco Park.S

Miami’s Justin Bour started the night strong with 22 homers in the first round, including six on consecutive swings. However, Judge kept up and passed the Marlins first baseman by one homer with a few big blasts, including a 501-foot shot. The Yankees rookie struck his winner in the final seconds to reach Round 2, after one of his swings was discounted because it hit the roof.

In the semifinal round, Judge faced off against another rookie slugger: Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger, who earlier this season became the first-ever baseball player to record 27 home runs in his first career game.


However, Judge defeated Bellinger 13-12 with a 507-foot blast off the windowed back wall at Marlins Park.

The Yankees star then secured the title with his 11th homer in the final round, a cannon to straightaway center field with just under two minutes left on the clock after Sano only managed 10.

“I had no pressure going into it,” he said. “I’m a rookie. This is my first time doing it. I’ve got no expectations. I’m just going in there and have some fun.”


Judge drew praise from several major MLB stars for his performance.

“What he did was amazing,” said Seattle’s Robinson Cano, who won the event as a Yankee in 2011. “I’ve never seen anything like that. Not only the home runs, but to go opposite field that many times? He made this ballpark look like nothing. I thought I’ve seen it all before, but this guy, he’s on another level. He doesn’t even look tired.”

Fellow Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier, 22, called Judge the greatest of all time:

The youngster has clearly come a long way in the past half-season. Judge struggled last campaign and was not even sure if he would make the Yankees roster out of spring training.

“I try not (to be) really worried about what happened last year,” said Judge. “I still remember it. I look at it every day what I hit — .179. For me, just trying to take it one day at a time really helped me out.”

 Among the famous faces in attendance at Marlins Park on Monday was seven-foot Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid, who caught one of Sano’s balls from his seat in left field. The 23-year-old Cameroonian and former Kansas star tweeted a photo of the ball he snagged:

Also present was San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey, whom Judge admitted he admires greatly.

“He was walking into the clubhouse, and I had to stop him,” Judge said with a smile. “I said: ‘Buster, I’m a huge fan. It’s been fun watching what you’re doing.’”

Posey returned the compliment by noting how impressed he was with the six-foot-seven, 280-pound Yankees star’s agility given his size.

“It’s pretty incredible,” said Posey, the starting catcher for the National League. “I don’t think I can remember, even watching baseball growing up, seeing somebody as big as him move as well as he does.”

Judge can now begin the second half of the season with a title and a record to his name.

MIAMI, FL – JULY 10: Aaron Judge #99 of the New York Yankees hugs Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the National League during the T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Marlins Park on July 10, 2017 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

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Written by Pablo Mena