It’s not a secret that the San Francisco Giants are going all in on New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge. Technically, the new holder of the single-season American League home run record is not with the Bombers anymore: he is a free agent, and is able to negotiate with any team.
The Giants, as you probably know by now, were set to meet Tuesday with the Yankees slugger. It turns out they have one of their star players recruiting Judge.
Two-time All-Star outfielder Joc Pederson went to his Instagram account and tried to entice Judge into joining the Giants.
“I got 99 problems … winning ain’t one. We’re ready when you are @thejudge44,” Pederson wrote, clearly referring to Judge’s jersey number and Jay-Z song “99 Problems.”
A photoshopped picture of Judge in a Giants jersey was included in the post, as was the message “we’re ready when u are 99.”
The Yankees had their chance but now face competition
Judge rejected a seven-year, $213.5 million extension from the Yankees before the season, which would have been an eight-year, $230 million if we included the $17 million salary they offered him for the 2022 campaign in his final year of arbitration.
The outfielder decided to bet on himself and it paid off: he slashed .311/.425/.686 with 62 home runs, 133 runs, 131 RBI, and 16 stolen bases, taking the Yankees to the postseason almost all by himself.
The Giants were the first team besides the Yanks to sit down and talk with Judge.
Judge grew up in the Bay Area and rooted for the Giants as a kid.
A person with knowledge of the situation told NJ Advance Media that the Giants won’t be outbid for Judge.
“Judge is at the top of the Giants list and they won’t be underbid,” the person said. “If they miss out, it won’t be because of money.”