Aaron Judge Mar 30, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees center fielder Aaron Judge (99) watches his solo home run against the San Francisco Giants during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees have fallen down the standings in recent months, largely due to the absence of star outfielder Aaron Judge. He was expected to return from the IL on Friday, and the team made an official decision on that front.

Judge has been out since suffering a serious toe injury back in early June, and the team has greatly missed him. The team has gone just 19-23 since his injury suffered on June 3.

The organization previously said that Judge would be returning from the IL on Friday if there were no setbacks in his recovery. And it seems like everything has gone to plan, as he has indeed been activated to return by the team.

In a corresponding move, the Yankees will be optioning top infield prospect Oswald Pereza back to Triple-A. Pereza failed to find much of a role on the Yankees in his first stint in the majors, recording just a .173 batting average at the plate on 52 at-bats.

Some fans aren’t exactly thrilled about Peraza, but nearly every Yankees fan is ecstatic that Judge is indeed returning.

This news on Judge certainly couldn’t have come at a much more important time for the Yankees. The team has underperformed given expectations for much of the season but is still within striking distance of an AL Wild Card spot.

They currently sit 2.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the final playoff spot in the American League, and Judge could seemingly provide the much-needed spark to their struggling lineup in order to chase them down.

[New York Yankees on Twitter]

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.