Aaron Judge sounds ready and willing to leave the Yankees, if he must

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Aaron Judge’s contract expires at the end of the 2022 season. Per his latest comments, he’s willing to leave the Yankees if he must.

By no means should Judge’s comments suggest he wants to leave the Bronx, as the Yankees outfielder has done nothing but praise the organization in the lead-up to vital contract talks.

Yet, the MLB lockout hasn’t helped either side in this sense. Judge’s agent and the Yankees could be talking contract right now, if they were allowed to do so. Instead, it appears the two sides will go into the regular season — whenever that may be — without an agreement in place.

“You know, leading into this, especially coming up through the minor leagues and rookie ball, you want to be a free agent, test the market a little bit and see what’s out there. But that’s one thing, I’ve been lucky enough to play in the best organization out of all of them, so who wants to go anywhere else? If we get an extension done before the season starts, that’d be great. I’d be completely honored to wear pinstripes for a couple more years. But if it doesn’t happen and this is my last year [as a Yankee], I had a lot of great memories,” Judge said on the R2C2 podcast.

Yankees: How much would an Aaron Judge extension cost?

The starting point for any Judge deal would be a six-year, $150 million contract that George Springer received from the Blue Jays, per Dayn Perry of CBS Sports.

Judge at his peak is a better player than Springer, though at times both struggle to stay healthy.

Last season wasn’t an issue for Judge, as he played in 148 games, slashing .287/.373/.544 with 39 home runs and a .916 OPS.

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