MLB

Judge remains priority for Yankees in free agency, says Cashman

By Sports Desk December 06, 2022

Aaron Judge remains the New York Yankees' top priority in free agency, says general manager Brian Cashman, as they look to tie down the 2022 American League MVP.

The four-time All-Star has spent his entire MLB career at Yankee Stadium, but failed to agree a new long-term deal ahead of last season, instead penning just a short-term contract.

With the 30-year-old out of contract, his options are open after a season that saw him shatter the single-season American League home run record with 62.

Cashman says owner Hal Steinbrenner has met with Judge over his future, and hopes they will be able to convince the outfielder to re-sign with them sooner rather than later.

"We'd love to have our player back," he said. "We would love to continue to call him our player every step of the way as he follows what looks like a career path that will lead him to [Hall of Fame home] Cooperstown.

"I appreciate being in a position to have a conversation with a player of Judge's magnitude The ownership here has allowed us to stay in the game on a big-ticket item.

"That's great. I'm sure there's a lot of teams that would love to have access to a player of his calibre but can't participate because the asks are going to be so immense."

Cashman acknowledged there are risks to waiting on Judge's call, both for whoever may otherwise sign him and how it will shape the Yankees going forward.

But he believes the wait will be worth it if they can bring him back into the fold, adding: "It's not like we've missed time in my opinion.

"I understand the longer things go, the more at risk you are. It's easier if we are driving, but we're not driving it."

Related items

  • New York Yankees designate struggling OF Aaron Hicks for assignment New York Yankees designate struggling OF Aaron Hicks for assignment

    The New York Yankees have decided to cut ties with struggling outfielder Aaron Hicks.

    The Yankees designated Hicks for assignment on Saturday before their game against the Cincinnati Reds.

    Through 28 games this season, Hicks is slashing just .188/.263/.261 with one home run, two doubles and five RBIS.

    Among the 315 major league hitters with at least 75 plate appearances, Hicks' .524 OPS ranks 299th.

    It is a costly decision for the Yankees, as Hicks' contract runs through 2025 and the team will be forced to eat nearly $30million remaining on the seven-year, $70m contract he signed in 2019.

    The sides agreed to that deal after Hicks enjoyed a career year in 2018, when he hit 27 homers and drove in 79.

    In almost four-and-a-half seasons since then, however, the 33-year-old Hicks has managed just 31 home runs while batting .218.

    In a corresponding move Saturday, the Yankees selected the contract of outfielder Greg Allen from the minors.

    The 30-year-old Allen was acquired in a trade from the Boston Red Sox on Friday and is beginning his second stint with the Yankees after appearing in 15 games for them in 2021.

  • Astros activate star 2B Altuve for season debut Astros activate star 2B Altuve for season debut

    Jose Altuve will return to the Houston Astros’ lineup for Friday’s game against the Oakland Athletics after the team activated the 2017 American League Most Valuable Player from the injured list.

    Altuve has yet to play this season due to a fractured right thumb he sustained while playing for his native Venezuela in the World Baseball Classic on March 19. He underwent surgery on March 22 and was given an eight-week timeline to return.

    The eight-time All-Star prepped for his 2023 debut by playing five minor league rehab games over the past week, though he went just 2 for 22 at the plate.

    Altuve finished fifth in voting for last season’s AL MVP after finishing with a .300 average, 28 home runs, 103 runs scored and 18 stolen bases in 141 games for the World Series champion Astros.

    The 33-year-old’s career .307 batting average ranks third among active players with at least 1,000 plate appearances, trailing only 2022 AL batting champ Luis Arraez and fellow Venezuelan Miguel Cabrera.

    Altuve will be counted on to provide a spark to a Houston offense that’s averaging just 4.44 runs per game, 15th in the majors. The Astros currently stand two games behind division-leading Texas in the AL West with a 24-19 record.

  • Rays pound Cease as Paredes drives in career-high five, Ohtani falls short on cycle bid Rays pound Cease as Paredes drives in career-high five, Ohtani falls short on cycle bid

    The Tampa Bay Rays re-discovered their free-scoring ways as Isaac Paredes managed a career-high five RBIs in a 14-5 victory over the slumping Chicago White Sox on Thursday.

    The Sox fall to their eighth straight loss, even with Dylan Cease on the mound, pounded for seven runs from nine hits across four innings, with only three strikeouts.

    Paredes started it off with a second-inning RBI single, grounded out to third to score Randy Arozarena in the fifth, before a three-run double in the sixth opened up an 11-2 lead.

    Brandon Lowe maintained his excellent early season hitting with a 358-foot third inning homer along with a two-run single in the fifth. Lowe's solo shot took his season tally to seven homers.

    Shane McClanahan (5-0) allowed two runs and struck out five across five innings, while Luke Raley went three-for-five with three RBIs including a ninth-inning homer, and moved from the outfield to the mound in the ninth.

    The Rays, who started the season 13-0, had been beaten and shut out in consecutive games by the Houston Astros, 1-0 and 5-0 on Wednesday and Tuesday respectively.

    Tampa Bay delivered 16 hits for the game and ended their scoreless run at 20 innings.

    Ohtani's mixed game as Angels edge home

    Shohei Ohtani responded after a shaky start on the mound to lead the Los Angeles Angels past the Oakland Athletics 8-7.

    Ohtani (4-0) earned the win, although he gave up five runs in a rough fourth inning, with three-run blasts to Brent Rooker and a two-run homer to Shea Langeliers. He had thrown three perfect innings to that point and finished with eight strikeouts, allowing three hits across six innings.

    The Japanese two-way star went three-for-five with the bat, including a triple, double and single, scoring two runs, with an eighth-inning shot caught by Esteury Ruiz on the warning track in center field.

    Brandon Drury delivered a 409-foot three-run home run over left-center field in the first inning, with Ohtani scoring after his prior double.

    Keller fans 10 as Pirates continue fine form

    Mitch Keller matched his career-high 10 strikeouts as the Pittsburgh Pirates downed the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2.

    Keller improved to 3-0, giving up two runs on five hits across six innings, as the Pirates continued their excellent run having won nine of their past 10, moving to an 18-8 record.

    Pittsburgh rallied from an early 2-0 deficit, with three runs at the bottom of the first inning, before Connor Joe's two-run blast followed by Rodolfo Castro's 414-foot homer in the sixth.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.