X

Yankees' Aaron Judge Discusses Potential Contract Extension Entering 2021 Season

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistFebruary 24, 2021

CORRECTS INNING TO FIFTH NOT SIXTH - New York Yankees' Aaron Judge looks to the outfield after hitting a solo home run during the fifth inning of an exhibition baseball game against the Philadelphia Phillies, Monday, July 20, 2020, at Yankee Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Kathy Willens/Associated Press

Aaron Judge, who is under team control through 2022, didn't give any consideration to a long-term contract extension with the New York Yankees during the offseason. 

Speaking to reporters about his contract status, Judge said the sides didn't have any talks as the Yankees spent the offseason trying to negotiate with their free agents:

"I think they had more important things to focus on this offseason, especially getting back DJ (LeMahieu), getting back (Brett Gardner), adding some special arms. Our time is coming down the road. It's something I don't really want to focus on right now. I'm focused on trying to win and that's it. Just do my job and like I said, they've got other things to focus on right now, things that are going to help us be a better team.”

New York had protracted negotiations with DJ LeMahieu before the sides eventually finalized a six-year, $90 million contract on Jan. 27. The team also signed two-time AL Cy Young winner Corey Kluber and acquired Jameson Taillon in a trade with the Pittsburgh Pirates to stabilize its starting rotation. 

Judge has been the face of the Yankees since his breakout rookie season in 2017. The 28-year-old was named AL Rookie of the Year and finished second in AL MVP voting after hitting .284/.422/.627 with an AL rookie record 52 home runs. 

One potential concern for the Yankees as they ponder a long-term extension with Judge is his injury history. The two-time All-Star has missed at least 32 games in each of the past three seasons, including 110 in 2018 and 2019 combined. 

The Yankees don't have to rush a deal for Judge. He has already signed a $10.18 million contract for this season and has one more year of arbitration eligibility. 

Judge has been a productive hitter when he's played, posting a .274/.381/.536 slash line with 63 homers in 242 games since the start of 2018.

🚨 SPORTS NEWS ➡️ YOUR INBOX

The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.