Aaron Judge’s glance toward Yankees’ dugout raises Blue Jays’ suspicions

Aaron Judge’s mid-at-bat dugout glance raises Blue Jays’ suspicions originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

Aaron Judge‘s wandering eyes have caused a bit of a controversy in Toronto.

In the eighth inning of the New York Yankees’ matchup with the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre, the SportsNet broadcast duo of Dan Shulman and Buck Martinez wondered aloud why Judge was glancing at the Yankees’ dugout in the middle of his at-bat.

Judge proceeded to blast a home run to dead center field off Jays reliever Jay Jackson — after which Shulman and Martinez noticed Judge looking at the Yankees dugout again right before going yard.

The obvious question here is whether Judge was stealing signs, and whether the Yankees dugout was relaying pitches to him at the plate in real time. Judge denied any foul play after the game, claiming he heard a few of his Yankees teammates yelling at the home plate umpire and was trying to identify who it was.

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“There was kind of a lot of chirping from our dugout, which I really didn’t like in the situation,” Judge said. ” … I said a couple of things to some guys in the dugout and especially after the game. Hopefully it won’t happen again.”

That’s a rather curious explanation, and one that didn’t necessarily quell the Blue Jays’ suspicions.

“I saw it. Kind of odd that a hitter would be looking in that direction,” Toronto manager John Schneider said after the game, via the Toronto Sun. “He’s obviously looking in that direction for a reason and dive into it a little more tonight and tomorrow and make sure we’re doing everything we can to make ourselves susceptible to tendencies.”

Jackson also seemed to think there was some foul play involved.

“When I came back to the dugout (one of the coaches) told me. ‘You’re going to be pissed when you see the video,'” Jackson said. “He said they are tipping pitches. … For him to be peaking over for that amount of time, it seemed like it wasn’t just a glance and re-adjusting your eyes to get back on the pitcher.”

It seems like Judge and the Yankees have their story — manager Aaron Boone also claimed Judge was peeved at his chirping teammates — so it’s unclear if the team will face any discipline. At the very least, however, teams may try to button up their process of giving signs when they play New York this season.

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