Yankees: Aaron Judge’s new contract demands are exceeding expectations

yankees, aaron judge
Oct 14, 2022; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge (99) reacts after striking out against the Cleveland Guardians during the seventh inning in game two of the ALDS for the 2022 MLB Playoffs at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

When the New York Yankees placed an eight-year, $300 million deal on the table for Aaron Judge in free agency, most believe that would be the final offer. However, the San Francisco Giants had other plans, presenting a deal in the neighborhood of $360 million, which would pay Judge a minimum of $40 million per season.

Giants are in with a big offer to Judge — believed to be $360M neighborhood — but the assumption/belief among rivals is that the Yankees remain favorites. Yankees are hopeful but say they still don’t know.

Per Jon Heyman of the New York Post.

The Yankees are not publicizing their position for Aaron Judge:

The Yankees’ initial deal would’ve coughed up to $37.5 million per year, a significant increase from the $31.5 million they presented him before the 2022 season began.

Obviously, he went on to win the MVP and put together one of the best seasons in the history of the game, justifying one of the biggest contracts baseball has ever seen.

Judge’s new contract demands expect to reach nine years, making him 39 when the deal eventually concludes. The Bombers were hoping to keep the years at a maximum of eight, but pinching pennies and failing to go to the extra year is a fool’s game for general manager Brian Cashman, especially when it comes to one of the best players in baseball and one the Yankees groomed themselves. He’s the face of their franchise, after all.

We do know that his demands are exceeding expectations, and the Yankees remain confident in their pursuit, but they have backup options on the table for immediate action if the superstar slugger ends up walking in free agency.

Cashman currently has starting pitcher Carlos Rodon on speed dial, ready to pull the trigger the very moment that Judge makes an unfortunate decision (it’s possible he signs Rodon in addition to Judge).

There is an increasing belief that the Giants could land Judge, but Cashman is simply playing a defensive game at this point in time. He’s trying to actively avoid a bidding war, which is happening regardless, considering the Giants’ recent behemoth offer. Keeping things under wraps is smart by Cashman since the last time he brought negotiations to the public with a strong-arm approach, Judge’s camp saw it as a sign of ill-faith.

With negotiations ongoing, super agent Scott Boris indicated that Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner isn’t swimming in the shallow end but rather in the infinity pool, making a run at an indispensable player. That should be an encouraging sign for Yankee fans, but there has to be a line Steinbrenner isn’t willing to cross, and it seems as if the Giants may be approaching it rather quickly.