The New York Yankees seem to be in real danger of losing Aaron Judge and the all-time home run king is definitely pursuing other options as the Yankees prepare a package that isn’t guaranteed to keep Judge in pinstripes, which would be a damaging blow to their franchise.
Will Aaron Judge Leave The Yankees In Free Agency?
Imagine being the franchise that let a 62-homer MLBbro, in his prime, walk out the door for free? George Steinbrenner is probably rolling in his grave right now, as his sons continue to botch chances of bringing their franchise player back home.
Reports say that the San Francisco Giants put on a full court press when the slugger made a free agent visit to the Giants before Thanksgiving. The fact that Judge is even entertaining free agent offers is damning for the Yankees and has fans losing it. The Giants are using every resource to lure Judge to Cisco.
San Francisco Giants Heavily Pursuing Aaron Judge
“As part of their pitch, the Giants put Judge in touch with Steph Curry’s camp, hopeful that the two superstars could connect as Judge weighs his decision, sources told NBC Sports Bay Area. … Judge arrived in the city Monday and met with Giants officials for two days, with conversations kicking off Monday night at Oracle Park, where Judge and his agent had dinner with CEO Larry Baer, president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi, manager Gabe Kapler and other members of the organization. The Giants continued to meet with Judge for most of the day Tuesday.
MLB Network’s Jon Morosi had more on Judge’s meeting with the Giants:
“Now I’m told it was a day of multiple meetings. I’m told that the meetings went all the way up to the ownership level between Aaron Judge and the San Francisco Giants, so a very significant development there. There were a lot of conversations for Aaron Judge with the Giants, of course going back to his home state of California and the team he grew up following.
“Now we know this, and I don’t have all the details of everybody that he spoke with, but when you consider the thoughtfulness of the Giants and their long history and the number of icons they’ve had over time, it would not surprise me if the Giants really organized this to consider and go back to Aaron’s emotions as a long-time fan of the franchise. And perhaps even including some of his favorite players as a kid, who might well have been able to meet with him yesterday.
“So again I’m told it was a very productive meeting. I don’t think right now, guys, that there has been an offer made yet. But I do expect that could happen within a week, where there’s a formal offer made from the Giants to Aaron Judge. And the general pace of things, we know where the Yankees stand, we know they’ve had a conversation with him since the season ended, Aaron has a pretty good understanding of where the Yankees stand with what they’ve done with the previous offers and where things stand right now.
“I believe that once Aaron Judge knows where at least the initial Giants offer comes in, and I do believe one is forthcoming, that there will be a fairly robust conversation to where we could see Aaron Judge signing with a team within the next two weeks, by the end of the Winter Meetings. So I think that’s kind of where we stand here, where this is not going to be a February decision. I would expect this to be a December decision and it could even happen before the end of the Winter Meetings in his home state of California.”
In addition to Curry’s influence, Giants two-time All-Star outfielder Joc Pederson offered his support for the idea of a change of coast for the 2022 American League MVP in a Tweet.
“I got 99 problems … winning ain’t one. We’re ready when you are @thejudge44,” Pederson wrote, referring to Judge’s jersey number and the famous Jay-Z song “99 Problems.”
Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner claims to have had two meetings with Judge and has expressed that the Yankees want Judge to finish his career in pinstripes.
Yankees Make Another Contract Offer To Judge
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said last week that the club made a new offer to Judge and, “We’re certainly not going to mess around.”
Problem is, earlier this month at the GM Meetings in Las Vegas, Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi said ownership is not sparing any coin and there’s no limit to the budget that he has to woo Judge.
“I think from a financial standpoint there’s nobody that would be out of our capability,” Zaidi said.
That’s big talk from Giants brass. They are obviously going all in and they have several advantages, including the fact that Judge was born in Sacramento, California and grew up in Linden, California, just under two hours away from San Francisco, so he would be going home for real. It’s got to be somewhat enticing for the judge.
Will Giants Outbid Yankees For Aaron Judge ?
Somewhat exciting for San Francisco fans who haven’t had a player of this ilk since Barry Bonds was blasting balls into McCovey Cove on a nightly basis.
And somewhat terrifying for Yankees fans, might lose one of the best hitters in franchise history in the prime of popularity and productivity.