Aaron Judge is must-see TV, as the New York Yankees star outfielder is looking to break the American League home-run record of 61, set by Roger Maris in 1961.
On Tuesday, Judge hit his 60th home run of the season, tying Babe Ruth’s home-run total from 1927 while the crowd in the Bronx stood for each of Judge’s plate appearances, hoping to witness history.
The Yankees slugger drove a 3-1 pitch from Pittsburgh’s Wil Crowe 430 feet to the left-field seats leading off the ninth inning. Judge’s third home run in two games, and ninth in September, thrilled a screaming crowd at Yankee Stadium. The only other baseball players in history who have hit more than 61 home runs in a single season played in the National League and have been linked to steroid use.
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Judge, 30, is one of baseball’s best players and is poised to win the 2022 American League Most Valuable Player award, according to odds from DraftKings
Sportsbook. But despite Judge’s great career and 2022 season, he still has not cashed in with a huge new contract.
In his seven seasons since turning pro, Judge has made just $36 million from MLB contracts according to Spotrac, a lot lower than one might think an MLB player of his quality would have earned by his age. One big reason for that is Judge’s 2017 rookie season for the Yankees came when he was much older (25) than most rookies, which didn’t allow Judge to hit free agency for many years — Judge is the 57th highest-paid MLB player this season at $19 million.
Judge is set to cash in after this season, when he will be an unrestricted free agent and able to sign with any team for any amount of money that he and his agent can negotiate. Judge turned down a seven-year, $213.5 million extension before this season, according to Yankees President Brian Cashman, in hopes of earning more in free agency.
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Judge should be poised to earn hundreds of millions of dollars on a new contract, whether it’s from the Yankees or another team in the offseason.
Luckily for Judge, he had the largest number of endorsements in baseball last season, according to sports and entertainment data platform SponsorUnited. Judge has endorsement deals with T-Mobile
Oakley and JBL. It can’t hurt that Judge is one of the best players in baseball playing for the league’s most famous team.
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The Yankees next play on Wednesday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates, and tickets prices for the game are skyrocketing.
According to data from ticketing site Gametime, the average seat for Wednesday’s game is $274 each, compared to an average of $119 a week ago. The most expensive seats game are available at $4,742 each, more than quadrupling prices from two weeks ago.