Aaron Judge contract: What Dave Stewart would offer Yankees star

·2 min read

Stew reveals contract he would offer Judge in free agency originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge is eyeing a big payday this offseason. The 30-year-old will become a free agent after the season, and there will be no shortage of suitors lining up for his services.

In May, ESPN MLB insider Jeff Passan said on "The Rich Eisen Show" that if Judge were to remain healthy, which he has so far, the Yankees outfielder is "headed for a contract that starts with a three."

During Thursday's "A's Pregame Live," NBC Sports California analyst Dave Stewart was asked to put on his general manager hat and how much he would be willing to pay Judge on the open market.

"I hope [Yankees general manager] Brian [Cashman] is listening to me," Stewart said. "If I'm the Yankees, I don't let this player leave New York ... So contract-wise, I offer him an average value of 45. I go to $45 million per season."

After Stewart figured out the dollar amount he'd be willing to pay the Yankees outfielder, the A's analyst then transitioned over to how many years he'd be willing to sign Judge for. Despite Stewart's willingness to show Judge the money, the length of the contract is where the former pitcher will stand his ground.

"Because he's 30, I only want to give him six, which is the reason why I had such a high average value because I raised the average value so that I can get him for less years," Stewart added.

"I think six years, we're going to get the best of Aaron Judge, I think once we start getting it at 7th and 8th year, which means he's 37, 38, I think there's going to be some decline, and I don't want to be caught on the hook for that."

Doing the math, Stewart is willing to give Judge a six-year contract worth $270 million, which is short of what Passan believes the Yankees outfielder will command this offseason.

However, Stewart's hypothetical offer is more than the Yankees proposal that New York put on the table before the 2022 MLB season started.

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Judge rejected a seven-year contract extension worth $213.5 million, which would have made him the highest-paid position player in Yankees history on an annual basis.

Any team that signs Judge this winter will make a significant financial investment regardless of the contract term and number.