Aaron judge set to new deal
After an incredibly nerve-wracking two weeks (six months) the Yankees and Aaron Judge have agreed to terms on a contract to keep the big man in pinstripes. The deal was broken by Ken Rosenthal and Jon Morosi Wednesday morning and the reported terms of the deal are nine years and a whopping $360 million. The eyes of the baseball world have been on Judge this offseason as he was the premier free agent in this year’s market. The Yankees obviously wanted to keep their homegrown star but there were not too many hard reports and facts about Judge’s movements and desires as the offseason wore on. In the face of fierce competition, the Yankees got their man and now the conversation will begin as to if/when he is made the next captain of the Yankees.
The early rumors and rumblings were that Yankees’ owner Hal Steinbrenner had met personally with Judge on multiple occasions and would do whatever it takes to keep him. Promising as that may have been, Yankee fans were clearly concerned about the presence of Brian Cashman in these negotiations given his high profile, contentious negotiation with Derek Jeter a decade ago. Cashman agreed to a new contract of his own just days ago.
Concern about Cashman aside, the Yankees and their fans had plenty to be concerned about in the free agent market. Judge is a Bay Area guy from just a few hours outside of San Francisco and the interest was mutual between the two. It was reported Wednesday by Jon Heyman that they Giants were in the running with a $360 million offer of their own. There were even rumblings that “mystery teams” could get involved.
For a few moments Wednesday afternoon, Yankees fans hearts stopped, as it was reported again by Heyman, first with a typo and then spelled correctly, that it appeared Judge was heading to the Giants. This was quickly backtracked by Heyman as he reported that the Giants said they had nothing to confirm. For 5 minutes Aaron Judge was gone, and Yankee fans had to grapple with what that felt like. Maybe the Yankees organization needed that wake-up call or maybe they didn’t. Michael Kay reported live on his radio show a few moments after that, they he had gotten a text that the Yankees were “still in it”. All of this made Wednesday a truly surreal day and made the notification we all woke up to this morning feel like we were all still dreaming.
Jeff Passan on Twitter: “Aaron Judge flew into San Diego at the last minute to decide among three teams: the New York Yankees, the San Francisco Giants and the San Diego Padres. The Yankees bumped their offer to nine years and $360 million, and in the end, Judge decided he wanted to remain a Yankee.” / Twitter
It turns out a mystery team did get involved, as the San Diego Padres apparently came in with a big offer to Judge at the last minute. As was first reported on Monday, Judge finally arrived in San Diego on Tuesday to make his decision.
With Judge now back in the fold, the Yankees can move on to the rest of their offseason. With Anthony Rizzo and now Tommy Kahnle and Judge back in the fold, Wednesday should be an exciting day. Brian Cashman’s front office does not leak information (when they don’t want to) so we will have to wait and see what they pursue. It has been reporter that there is mutual interest between the Yankees and Carlos Rodon. Either way, today is already a win for Yankee fans so lets sit back and watch the rest of the offseason unfold.