As more and more reports surface, it sounds like Aaron Judge will head west if he doesn’t re-up with the Yankees.
It’s difficult to envision Judge leaving the Bronx, and New York absolutely should make signing the American League MVP candidate its utmost priority this offseason. But money talks and the superstar slugger might be forced to take the richest deal on the table if it’s considerably better than what the Yankees are offering.
So, what team could legitimately compete with New York in the Judge sweepstakes? Longtime Major League Baseball insider focused on one contender in a New York Post column published Thursday.
“The Giants look like the biggest threat to the Yankees, with Giants baseball president Farhan Zaidi making clear that they are in on the big free agents to win them and outfield their biggest team need beyond another top starter,” Heyman wrote. “Zaidi mentioned that San Francisco can be ‘polarizing’ for ballplayers (who may not appreciate the liberal leanings) but hopefully pointed out that players from the Bay Area do well there, such as Brandon Crawford and Joc Pederson. That was perhaps a hint for Judge, who is from Northern California, but as one rival agent pointed out, ‘Linden is not really the Bay Area.’ Also, Judge moved to the Tampa area, where the Yankees train, so if anyone has a home-field edge it may be New York.”
Heyman’s projection also is reflected at the sportsbooks. Recent DraftKings odds tabbed the Yankees as the clear favorite to sign Judge, but the Giants slot right behind them. Another report indicated San Francisco won’t be outbid in the effort to sign the four-time All-Star.
As far as the numbers on Judge’s impending deal are concerned, MLB personnel believe the contract “certainly will clear $300 million” in total value and might even approach $400 million.