The New York Yankees certainly made a sincere effort to sign their star player, Aaron Judge, to a long-term contract extension before the start of the regular season.
A few weeks ago, the player himself had set a deadline to the start of the regular season to get a deal done: he doesn’t want any negotiations distracting him and impacting his play.
That’s why both team and player knew that if they didn’t agree by Friday at noon, he would test free agency after the season.
And that’s what he will do, since there was no agreement.
Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman revealed that the team offered Judge a seven-year, $213.5 million pact.
That would be on top of what he makes in 2022 (either $17 million or $21 million).
The projected $30.5 million average annual value was actually solid value, but Judge has every right to reject the offer and test the market if he wants.
He wants nine years, guaranteed, and the Yankees offered eight in total.
New Yorkers Are Booing Judge
During the Yankees’ first two series at home, the player has heard some boos.
He says it’s nothing new, but an MLB insider is siding with him even though he recognizes the Yankees made a competitive offer.
“Judge doesn’t deserve boos. He has every right to set his contract demands where he wants (even if the Yankees made what seemed to be a reasonable offer), and to become a free agent,” MLB Network’s Jon Heyman tweeted.
Judge doesn’t deserve boos. He has every right to set his contract demands where he wants (even if the Yankees made what seemed to be a reasonable offer), and to become a free agent https://t.co/nhcRidxhf0
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) April 12, 2022
Judge has been rather unproductive in the early going, hitting for a .250 average with two runs, no homers or RBI, and one steal.
His OPS, before Tuesday’s game, stood at .646.
He is too good to remain this cold for long.
They should go away as he performs, and people should be patient: even if he hits free agency, his likely long-term destination is still the Bronx.