Aaron Judge has had a phenomenal contract year. The AL MVP frontrunner and New York Yankees slugger is closing down a historic season in which he is vying for the Triple Crown and the American League single-season home run record held by Roger Maris, and all this in the days leading up to a free agent. Thanks to Judge’s 60th home run on Tuesday, he’s guaranteed himself a huge paycheck in the future.
“Having this conversation about an extension is a rare privilege. What the Yankees are doing by giving me this chance is truly remarkable “A seven-year, $213.5 million contract deal was offered to Judge in the spring, but he turned it down. “However, I am fine with exploring my free agency options… I intend to contact 30 different clubs by the end of the year. You can count on the Yankees to be among those clubs.”
After general manager Brian Cashman took the unprecedented step of announcing the offer details during a press conference, we now know that the Yankees made an offer of seven years and $213.5 million. According to the New York Post, Judge didn’t seem to appreciate it and wanted a contract worth $36 million per year over 9-10 years. “That’s something I felt like was private between my team and the Yankees,” Judge said.
After receiving a fair offer from the Yankees during spring training, Judge has managed the seemingly impossible by earning himself more money. Although Judge has lifted his projected ceiling this season, teams pay for future performance, not previous performance. He is no longer limited to having “only” MVP seasons. The potential for him to achieve legendary status is high.
“Among the Yankees’ greats, Aaron Judge is among the top. He’s an outstanding player in our eyes. To us, he’s an outstanding human being. And that’s why we gave him the Yankees’ record contract for a position player “A few days ago, Yankees president Randy Levine made the following statement.
Aaron Judge 60th home run and Giancarlo Stanton walk-off grand slam but in Moneyball form pic.twitter.com/yAD5Iyugyi
— Talkin' Yanks (@TalkinYanks) September 21, 2022
“I think it’s great that he went out and took charge of the situation by himself, and now we can all get down and maybe work something out. Getting him back is a priority, and he is highly valued, in my opinion.”
And how has this season impacted Judge’s potential salary? That’s a lot, to say the least. So much is known. After this season, it would be interesting to speculate about what Judge’s next deal would entail.
Not out of thin air did the Yankees sign a seven-year, $213.5-million deal. It was estimated that the average yearly value of the extension, which was set to begin in 2023, would have been $30.5 million, making it the second-highest ever for an outfielder, behind only Mike Trout’s record-setting contract. Check out these all-time highest-paid outfielder contracts:
|TOTAL GUARANTEE||AVERAGE ANNUAL VALUE|
|1. Mike Trout, Angels: $426.5 million||1. Mike Trout, Angels: $35.54 million|
|2. Mookie Betts, Dodgers: $365 million||2. Mookie Betts, Dodgers: $30.42 million|
|3. Bryce Harper, Phillies: $330 million||3. Yoenis Cespedes, Mets: $27.5 million|
|4. Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins: $325 million||4. Kris Bryant, Rockies: $26 million|
|5. Christian Yelich, Brewers: $215 million||5. Bryce Harper, Phillies: $25.38 million|
According to the New York Post, the Yankees were willing to give Judge the $21 million salary he sought in 2022 as part of the extension, and the two sides nearly went to arbitration this year (the two sides settled on a $19 million salary, the midpoint of their $21 million and $17 million filing figures). An eight-year, $234.5-million deal was reached.
The Yankees’ total offer to Judge included the fifth-largest guarantee ever given to an outfielder and an annual salary that would have made Judge the second-highest paid outfielder in history. On the other hand, neither the annual value nor the total guarantee would have been the highest in franchise history.
Gerrit Cole owns those (at a yearly rate of $36 million and a total value of $324 million). As for the numbers, the Judge’s annual salary of $27.5 million would have topped Alex Rodriguez’s 2008-17 contract, but the total guarantee of $275 million would have been lower.
The Yankees offered Judge a contract that would have made him one of baseball’s highest-paid outfielders, but they stopped short of making him the franchise’s highest-paid player overall or in terms of annual salary. Even if he’d become a national celebrity, he still would have looked up to Cole.
Although Judge wanted to stay with the Yankees, he was unable to secure a long-term contract. The team reportedly offered Judge $17 million in arbitration and a seven-year extension worth $213.5 million, according to comments made by general manager Brian Cashman. Judge did not publicly disclose whether or not he had received the COVID-19 vaccine.
Cashman declined to say how this may have impacted ongoing talks. On June 24th, Judge signed a one-year contract worth $19 million to avoid salary arbitration. He also received $250,000 bonuses for winning the MVP Award and the World Series MVP Award.
Judge hit a two-run homer off of Jon Heasley of the Kansas City Royals on July 30, becoming the second-fastest player in MLB history to reach 200 home runs (behind Ryan Howard).
A home run by Judge hit on August 29 against the Los Angeles Angels and off reliever Ryan Tepera, traveled 434 feet. He joined an elite group of players by becoming only the 10th player in MLB history (and the 3rd in Yankees franchise history) to have back-to-back 50-homer seasons.
Judge hit his 55th home run on September 7 against the Minnesota Twins rookie starting pitcher Louie Varland in the first game of a doubleheader. He joined Babe Ruth (1921), Sammy Sosa (1998), and Ken Griffey Jr. (1997-1998) as the only players in MLB history to hit 55 or more home runs and steal 15 or more bases in the same season. On September 18 against the Milwaukee Brewers, Judge hit home runs 58 and 59 on the season, tying the record for most home runs in a single season by a single player.