Baseball rivalry? Aaron Judge offers advice to Mets’ Pete Alonso as he nears free agency

Aaron Judge during a Yankees' batting practise.

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Aaron Judge’s stellar performance in his contract year of 2022 remains a benchmark in baseball lore. His 62 home runs and the prestigious American League MVP title propelled him into a record-breaking nine-year, $360 million deal with the New York Yankees, complete with the added honor of being designated as the team’s captain by Hal Steinbrenner.

What happened with Aaron Judge?

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Aaron Judge’s journey through the intense negotiations and the unforgiving scrutiny of the New York media landscape highlighted the extraordinary pressure inherent in a walk year, a feat perhaps unparalleled in its magnitude. As the spotlight now shifts to Pete Alonso, the Mets’ power-hitting first baseman, anticipation brews for his endeavor to emulate Judge’s remarkable performance.

With less than eight months remaining until Alonso becomes a free agent, the stage is set for him to navigate the tumultuous waters of contract negotiations and potential bidding wars. Recognizing the impending challenges, I inquired of Judge what counsel he might offer to Alonso in this pivotal time.

While Aaron Judge admitted to not yet having conversed with Alonso directly on the matter, he anticipates the opportunity will arise soon, especially with the Mets scheduled to visit Steinbrenner Field for a series later in the month. In the realm of advice-givers, Judge stands as an invaluable resource, drawing from his recent firsthand encounter with the rigors of contract negotiations and the demands of a walk year.

As stated by Newsday, while Alonso boasts the guidance of seasoned agent Scott Boras, Judge’s insights stem from his own recent journey, offering a nuanced understanding of the mental and physical toll exacted during such critical seasons, especially for players of their caliber.

“I’d just tell him to go out there and be yourself,” Aaron Judge conveyed to Newsday. “Play the game and keep doing what got you in this position for the past six years. He’s had a heck of a career so far, especially playing in a big market like New York, and the numbers he’s put up have been impressive and fun to watch from across the way.”

In essence, Aaron Judge’s counsel to Alonso revolves around maintaining focus amidst the cacophony of contract negotiations and external pressures. Emphasizing the importance of staying true to his game, Judge underscores the significance of prioritizing baseball above all else, relegating concerns about contracts and endorsements to the periphery.

As Alonso prepares to embark on his own odyssey towards free agency, Judge’s words serve as a beacon of wisdom, guiding him through the turbulent waters that lie ahead. With Judge’s unparalleled success as a testament, Alonso finds himself poised to script his own narrative in the annals of baseball history, armed with the invaluable counsel of a seasoned mentor.

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