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Around the Empire: Yankees news - 7/1/22

Judge makes fourth All-Star Game; Chapman set to return; Yankees will seek outfield help

Oakland Athletics v New York Yankees Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images | Brendan Kuty: After being the leading vote-getter in the American League, Yankees’ outfielder Aaron Judge, who entered Thursday’s game with 29 home runs and a 178 wRC+, officially made his fourth All-Star Game and will be a starter.

In fact, Judge led all players with a whopping 3,762,498 total votes. Ronald Acuña Jr. of the Atlanta Braves was the other player who made the Midsummer Classic in the first phase by virtue of leading the National League in votes.

According to MLB, the second phase of voting, which begins at noon eastern on Tuesday, July 5th, features the top two vote-getters at each position (and the next four outfielders after Judge/Acuña). in each league based on vote totals from Phase 1. Jose Trevino and Giancarlo Stanton are finalists and candidates to start the game. Check out Andrew’s post yesterday for more.

Newsday | Erik Boland: After battling an Achilles injury for weeks, Yankees’ left-hander Aroldis Chapman is set to return from the injured list on Friday for the series against the Cleveland Guardians. The Yanks, however, won’t immediately give him the closer role.

“We’ll pick spots to get him in, try and get him in spots where he can be successful,” manager Aaron Boone said before Thursday night’s game against the Astros.

Chapman was 0-2 with a 3.86 ERA in 17 appearances before going down, but his WHIP was 1.64 and he clearly had issues with his control. Clay Holmes, who had a 0.49 ERA in 35 games heading into Thursday’s action, will retain the closer role, at least for now, and possibly for the long-term.

New York Post | Jon Heyman: MLB insider Jon Heyman wrote on Thursday that the Yankees are seeking outfield help in the trade market, since they haven’t gotten too much production from Aaron Hicks and Joey Gallo. While he explains Juan Soto and Bryan Reynolds are pipe dreams, he identifies a few realistic targets.

“In an extreme sellers’ market, the Royals’ Andrew Benintendi, the Orioles’ Anthony Santander and the Cubs’ Ian Happ might fit best, with the added bonus that all are left-handed or switch-hitters,” he said. Will the Yankees make a move?