NEW YORK (AP) — American League MVP Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees on Tuesday finalized their $360 million, nine-year contract, the third-largest deal in baseball history.
New York announced the agreement and called a news conference for Wednesday at Yankee Stadium to discuss the contract, which was agreed to on Dec. 7 subject to a successful physical.
Judge hit 62 homers last season to break the previous AL record of 61 set by the Yankees’ Roger Maris in 1961. Just before opening day, Judge turned down the Yankees’ offer of $213.5 million over seven years (2023-29).
By betting on himself, Judge gained an additional $146.5 million and two guaranteed seasons. He turns 31 in April.
Judge’s contract trails only Mike Trout’s $426.5 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels for 2019-31 and Mookie Betts’ $365 million pact with the Los Angeles Dodgers for 2021-32. Judge’s $40 million average salary is the highest for a position player, behind only New York Mets pitchers Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander at $43.33 million.
Judge hit .311 and tied for the major league lead with 131 RBIs. He hit 16 home runs more than any other player, the largest gap since the Philadelphia Athletics’ Jimmie Foxx hit 58 in 1932 and the Yankees’ Babe Ruth had 41.
A Northern California native, Judge met with the San Francisco Giants last month. He could be in line to become New York’s first captain since Derek Jeter retired after the 2014 season.
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