PGA Championship

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Aaron Judge giving the No. 61 ball to his mother was the best possible outcome

September 29, 2022

While watching Aaron Judge chase the elusive 61st home run for the past week, you couldn't help but feel for both his mother and Roger Maris Jr. After failing to reach the milestone in New York, where the entire Judge and Maris family were watching, Judge's mother Patty and Maris Jr. made the trek to Toronto as representatives for each family. On Monday and Tuesday night, as No. 99 took walk after walk, you couldn't help but notice the exasperation on both their faces.

And then, finally, Judge got it done Wednesday night, lining No. 61 over the left field wall at the Rogers Centre in the top of the seventh. As is the case with any milestone ball, the next big story would be about whoever caught it and what they were going to do with it.

But in a wild and gutting turn of events for one Blue Jays fan in particular, no one in the crowd caught the ball, as it ended up in the Jays bullpen and in the hands of coach Matt Buschmann. Buschmann, being a baseball guy through and through, simply gave it back to the Judge family and asked for nothing in return. 

So where did the No. 61 ball actually end up at the end of the night? In the hands of Patty Judge. Commence the melting of your heart:

Doesn't get much better than that. Add it to the laundry lists of reasons as to why it's impossible to hate Aaron Judge. Even the coldest of cold-hearted Boston fans or saltiest of salty Mets fans have to just tip their cap and All Rise for the Judge. OK, maybe they're just tipping their caps. 

For those keeping track, that means both No. 60 and 61 have ended up back with someone who has the last name Judge, which is exactly how it should be. As for the eventual No. 62, if it happens, all bets are off.