Aaron Judge Rumors: ‘Industry Sense’ Giants Don’t Want Heavy Investment in 1 Player | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors
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After previously being rumored to be heavily involved in the Aaron Judge sweepstakes, the San Francisco Giants may not be as locked in on the four-time All-Star as expected.
Per Joel Sherman of the New York Post, there is an “industry sense” that Giants President of Baseball Operations Farhan Zaidi would prefer to “spread his dollars around
and not invest so heavily in one piece” to sign a player who will command what Judge is likely to receive.
The Giants have long been seen as the New York Yankees’ primary competitor for Judge this offseason. He does have California connections, as he was born in Sacramento and went to college at Fresno State.
One person with knowledge of the Giants’ thinking told Randy Miller of NJ.com the team won’t be outbid by anyone for Judge.
“Judge is at the top of the Giants list and they won’t be underbid,” the person said. “If they miss out, it won’t be because of money.”
The same person also said the Giants “have so much money freed up” that they won’t stop with Judge if they are able to sign him.
Per Spotrac, the Giants currently have just $70.1 million in salary commitments on the books for 2023. They do have many holes on the roster that could use an upgrade, including first base and third base.
Carlos Rodon and Joc Pederson are among the Giants’ key free agents they could look to re-sign. Both players received the one-year qualifying offer that would pay them $19.65 million in 2023 if they accept it. They have until Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET to decide if they want to take the deal.
In addition to the Yankees and Giants, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported the Los Angeles Dodgers are considering making a play for Judge.
If the Dodgers were to add Judge, Feinsand noted they would move Mookie Betts from right field to second base.
This is an ideal position for Judge to be in. The Dodgers and Giants have proved they are willing to spend big money to land star players. Even if he wants to return to New York, a bidding war with those other teams would almost certainly drive his price up significantly.
Judge is coming off a historic season in which he hit an AL-record 62 homers and led MLB with a .425 on-base percentage and .686 slugging percentage. His age could be a concern in a long-term deal, as he will turn 31 next April.
But the Giants need a lot of help as they try to compete with the Dodgers and San Diego Padres atop the NL West. They finished 81-81 last season after winning a franchise-record 107 games in 2021.