New York Yankees superstar Aaron Judge was the sole inductee into the Linden Athletic Hall of Fame during a packed-house dinner and ceremony at Linden High School. 

“It is an honor and a privilege for me to be in this fraternity with so many great Linden athletes and teams,” Judge said. “There are undefeated baseball and softball teams, state champion volleyball teams and great athletes in the hall. It’s a privilege to join them. “And it’s always a breath of fresh air to be home. You hit Copperopolis Road and you know you’re home. The people of Linden mean so much to me.”

In his senior year (2009-10), Judge caught 54 passes for 960 yards and 17 touchdowns in football, averaged 18 points per game in basketball and hit .500 in baseball.

“Here we are in the Mother Lode League and there’s a 6-foot-7 tight end matched up against a 5-foot-nothing defense back,” long-time Linden High coaching legend Mark Miller said with a laugh. “It probably should have been illegal. But you never saw Aaron get boastful despite the difference in talent. He was respectful of teammates and opponents.”

Much of that approach comes from his upbringing. Judge’s parents, Patty and Wayne Judge, are long-time Stockton-area educators.

“Aaron is physically strong, mentally strong and morally straight,” said Bob Amerman, who coached baseball for 46 years at Linden High School. “He’s a Number 1 in all respects. His family has a lot to do with that.”

What a guy! 

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