Aaron Judge Rumors: Mets Won't Pursue Yankees Star After Failed Contract Talks

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIApril 16, 2022

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 13: Aaron Judge #99 of the New York Yankees reacts after a home run in the fifth inning during the game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, April 13, 2022 in New York, New York. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Daniel Shirey/MLB Photos via Getty Images

New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge appears poised to become a free agent next offseason after failing to come to a contract extension agreement before Opening Day, but don't expect the crosstown rival New York Mets to make a run at him.

That's per the New York Post's Jon Heyman, who doesn't think Mets owner Steve Cohen will make a run at him.

"Cohen is telling folks he thinks the Yankees made a 'very fair' offer to Judge," Heyman wrote.

"Such sentiment suggests he wouldn't go past that bid, and certainly not far enough past to get Judge to move himself and his chambers to Queens."

Heyman also spoke with a source who believed that Cohen "wouldn't do that to the Yankees" and steal Judge away.

Judge set a deadline of Opening Day to agree to a contract extension. Ultimately, the Yankees and Judge were too far apart on the numbers. Heyman had more:

"Meantime, back in The Bronx, the Yankees and Judge have too many reasons not to restart talks that have them about $75 million apart—the Yankees are offering about $233 million including a seven-year extension for $213.5 million while Judge was seeking a nine- or 10-year total deal (eight- or nine-year extension) for at least $308 million total, based on his $36M-a-year ask for those free-agent years."

Judge, who turns 30 years old on April 26, is a three-time All-Star. He hit 39 home runs with 98 RBI and a .916 OPS last year.

The Mets could probably afford him, as Cohen hasn't been afraid to throw a tremendous amount of money around. The Mets have notably jumped over the Yankees and sport the second-biggest payroll in the bigs this year.

However, it ultimately appears hard to believe Judge would move across town.

"Neither Cohen nor Billy Eppler nor Sandy Alderson believes that overpaying on extensions and in free agency is the path toward perennial contention. It is an interim step," SNY's Andy Martino wrote April 8.

He added:

"We've learned not to rule anything out in this business.  But paying Judge into his late 30s would be counter to the path that the Mets are trying to walk."

For now, Judge is playing out the season with the Yankees. He's hitting .276 with a .827 OPS through eight games for the 4-4 Yanks thus far.