MLB Writer Sees This As Yankees Backup Plan If Unable To Re-Sign Aaron Judge

Could the Yankees go after a marquee shortstop?

by

Nov 15, 2022

If the New York Yankees don’t end up re-signing Aaron Judge this offseason, they’ll be sitting on a big pile of money.

And well-connected Major League Baseball writer Jon Heyman of the New York Post believes he knows what the Yankees might do with that influx of cash if Judge isn’t back wearing pinstripes. Heyman hinted New York might be positioning itself for that possibility already.

If Judge does decide to head elsewhere, the Yankees could go after a star shortstop as they made “connections” with Trea Turner, Carlos Correa and Xander Bogaerts on Tuesday, Heyman reported. Heyman added the Yankees also touched base with outfielder Brandon Nimmo.

The Yankees have reiterated so far this offseason their No. 1 priority is Judge and they could just be doing their due diligence when it comes to the free-agent market at other positions. It’s no sure thing Judge returns as it’s looking like a three-team race to land the coveted star slugger.

Heyman noted, citing club personnel, the Yankees look to have Oswald Peraza and highly touted prospect Anthony Volpe battle it out for the starting shortstop job. And while members of the organization have not “indicated a strong desire” to land a marquee shortstop, according to Heyman, things could certainly change if Judge leaves the Yankees behind.

The three shortstops Heyman mentioned the Yankees connected with are all intriguing possibilities. Turner has been linked to multiple teams, as has Correa, while luring Bogaerts, who unsurprisingly rejected the Boston Red Sox’s qualifying offer, away from an archrival wouldn’t be a terrible consolation prize for the Yankees.

New York was busy Tuesday re-signing veteran first baseman Anthony Rizzo and even though that’s a solid move, it really won’t help the Yankees out too much if they can’t retain Judge. The Yankees have not confirmed yet if they have made a recent contract offer to Judge, per Heyman. But the 30-year-old is expected to land a deal in the $300 million range after rejecting a seven-year, $213.5 million offer from the Yankees at the start of this past season.

By kicking the tires on a few premier shortstops, it feels like the Yankees are starting to lay the groundwork in case things don’t work out between them and Judge.

After all, it’s never a bad idea to have a backup plan.

Thumbnail photo via Rick Osentoski/USA TODAY Sports Images
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