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New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge picked a great time to have a career year as he will be a free agent at the end of the season.
Aaron Judge hit his 60th home run of the season for the New York Yankees on Tuesday, and with it, it likely cemented his fate as the American League MVP in 2022.
He bet on himself when he turned down a seven-year contract extension with the Yankees for $213.5 million. Now, he will almost certainly get more in both length and average annual value (or AAV).
The Yankees will, undoubtedly, be in the Aaron Judge sweepstakes, but some other teams that need a center fielder or right fielder might not be in on Judge due to the financial commitment. However, some teams could be in on him, and they would be sleepers behind the Yankees.
Here are three sleeper teams that could be in on Aaron Judge this offseason.
3 sleeper teams in on Yankees OF Aaron Judge in free agency
1) The Chicago Cubs could be in on Aaron Judge
The Chicago Cubs could definitely be in on Aaron Judge. They have a need in center field as, on the season, their center fielders have a wRC+ of 88, which is 15th among the 30 teams in center field but still 12 percent below league average for offense overall.
Unlike most teams, the Cubs have the money and are willing to spend it. In 2019, their payroll was nearly $215 million. Now, it’s about $150 million, or about 70 percent of what it once was.
They spent money on Marcus Stroman and Seiya Suzuki last offseason, and they didn’t spend money on them in free agency just to average 93 losses a season (as they are on pace for this year). They are going to spend money this offseason, so they could be in on Judge.