Yankees’ Aaron Judge wins two major Players Choice awards as his free agency looms
NEW YORK – Start making room on the mantle, Aaron Judge.
MLB’s awards season is already here, and Judge’s hardware collection – to honor an incredible 2022 campaign with the Yankees – will be glittering.
On Friday, the anticipated soon-to-be-free agent slugger captured two major Players Choice Awards, as voted by his big-league peers.
Judge was named the American League’s Outstanding Player and won the overall Outstanding Player award for 2022.
During a sensational free-agent walk year, Judge, 30, chased down Roger Maris’ franchise and AL record of 61 home runs and nearly won the AL’s first Triple Crown since Miguel Cabrera in 2012.
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Batting .311 in 157 games, Judge led the league in homers (62), RBI (131) and OPS (1.111).
And he’s about to cash in, having rejected the Yankees’ seven-year, $213.5 million extension ($30.5 annually, to begin in 2023) seven months ago.
Judge’s filing is expected following the conclusion of the World Series.
After the Yankees were swept by Houston in the AL Championship Series, with Judge going 1-for-16, he said he’s been “clear’’ about wanting to be a Yankee for life.
“But we couldn’t get something done before spring training, and now I’m a free agent,’’ Judge said following ALCS Game 4. “We’ll see what happens.’’
A potential free agent himself, Anthony Rizzo – a teammate and friend of Judge – said the slugger’s stats and clubhouse impact say it all.
“The money he’s brought to this organization, this franchise, to the game of baseball – I’m sure just the money alone in September and him chasing 62 was enough to easily pay (him),’’ said Rizzo.
“There’s plenty of money in this game to be spread around. I think whatever he gets is going to be astronomical and he deserves it.’’
This article originally appeared on NorthJersey.com: Aaron Judge wins Players Choice Awards: Yankees slugger free agency
Source: Yahoo Sports