MLB Breaking News: Aaron Judge Signs With New York Yankees in 2023 MLB Free Agency
Published: Dec 07, 2022
Updated: Dec 07, 2022
Aaron Judge, the top MLB free agent outfielder this offseason, bet on himself in 2022 and he won in a big, big way. One of, if not the biggest marquee free agents in 2023 MLB Free Agency returns to the New York Yankees, where he will be a stalwart in the lineup for nearly the next decade. The Yankees aren’t afraid to spend, we all know that, and the $360M deal for the 2022 American League Most Valuable Player (MVP) becomes the highest deal inked this offseason, and rightfully so. The San Francisco Giants were in the running for Judge, but ultimately he returns to the Bronx, where he’s hit 116 home runs in his career. Of the biggest names in free agency, Judge joins the likes of Trea Turner (Philadelphia Phillies), Justin Verlander (New York Mets), and José Abreu (Houston Astros) to sign a deal in this MLB free agent class. Let’s take a look at Judge’s fantasy baseball value for 2023, as well as what his signing means for other free agent outfielders, and the rest of the MLB Free Agency as a whole.
What is Aaron Judge’s Fantasy Baseball Value in 2023?
I mean, what is there to say? He’s the most elite power asset in fantasy baseball. He’s coming off a season where he hit 62 home runs, and his 101 total home runs over the last two seasons are 21 more than the next closest players (Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Shohei Ohtani), and he’s even posted a .299/.400/.616 line with 22 stolen bases during this impeccable two-year run. He’s remained healthy each of the last two years, and that’s really the biggest detractor to fantasy stardom for Judge. Prior to the shortened 2020 season (where he only played 28 games), he played in more than 115 games just once (2017). I don’t know if we’ll see 15+ stolen bases from Judge again this season, and I doubt he hits 60+ home runs again, but he’s a fantasy stud with one of the highest offensive floors in the game. By his standard, his Steamer projections would be a “down year,” yet it’s still a .275+ batting average with 40+ home runs, 100+ runs scored, and 100+ RBI. We’d like to see the Yankees boost the lower third of the order a bit, but it’s still a good offense to be in, and his home ballpark is heavenly for his fantasy value. Regardless of format, he’s a surefire first round pick that gives your team a strong start in four categories, and if he runs like last year, he’s above-average to elite in all five categories.
Aaron Judge’s Signing Impact on the New York Yankees
Without Judge, there would be a massive void left in this lineup. The lower-third of the lineup already has some questions, but a Anthony Rizzo, Judge, and Giancarlo Stanton trio in the heart of the order can overshadow some of the deficiencies in the lineup. With Judge back in the mix, Brian Cashman can sigh with relief, and the heart of the order remains strong. The Yankees still need another contact and high OBP guy in that lineup, but Judge’s counting stats should remain strong. The Yankees shouldn’t be done quite yet.
How does the Aaron Judge Signing Impact Other Free Agent Outfielders?
Financially, it doesn’t. There is no other outfielder that was going to get $300M, let alone $200M. However, teams that were in on Judge could shift focus (and funds) to other remaining outfielders on the market, including Brandon Nimmo, and Andrew Benintendi, among others. Judge was the top free agent outfielder without a doubt, and the Yankees retain the fan favorite. Expect the Giants in particular to remain active in the outfield market,
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Related MLB Links:
- 2023 MLB Free Agent Tracker
- 2023 Top-350 MLB Fantasy Baseball Dynasty Rankings
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