Sept. 30, 2022, 6:31 p.m. ET
Sept. 30, 2022, 6:31 p.m. ETCredit…Brad Penner/USA Today Sports, via Reuters
If Aaron Judge were picking a pitcher to face as he tries to snap a tie with Roger Maris for essentially the most home runs by an American League batter in a single season, he could do rather a lot worse than Jordan Lyles, a right-hander who’s scheduled to start out for the Baltimore Orioles on Friday.
Lyles, 31, is in his twelfth major league season and while he has finally been given the chance to start out full time, with greater than 30 starts in each of the last two seasons, that has resulted in a variety of balls leaving the park.
In 2021, Lyles led the majors by giving up 38 homers, which helped contribute to an unsightly 5.15 E.R.A. He has been somewhat higher this season, with 25 homers allowed and a 4.55 E.R.A., but two of those homers got here against — you guessed it — Judge. The homers, which each got here on May 23, were Nos. 16 and 17 of the season for Judge, and so they traveled a combined distance of 823 feet. It needs to be noted that Lyles and Baltimore won that game.