2013 Draft: Yankees sign first rounder Aaron Judge

7/12-7/14 Series Preview: Minnesota Twins
Derek Jeter has Grade I quad strain, will not play this weekend

Friday: Judge has officially signed. In fact, here’s a picture of him signing the contract. The Yankees are currently $114k over their draft pool and will have to pay an $85.5k tax.

Thursday: Via George King: The Yankees have agreed to sign first round pick Aaron Judge to an over-slot $1.8M signing bonus. Slot money for the 32nd overall pick is just under $1.68M. This is the sixth largest bonus the Yankees have ever given a drafted player, behind only Andrew Brackman, Ian Kennedy, Slade Heathcott, Drew Henson, and Eric Jagielo. This is the pick the Yankees received as compensation for losing Nick Swisher to free agency.

Judge, 21, is an outfielder out of Fresno State. He is listed at 6-foot-7 and 255 lbs., so he’s an imposing figure on the field. “Judge profiles as a .250 hitter and is going to strike out a lot, which comes with the territory for tall power hitters with long arms … he has light-tower power. Judge is a solid-average runner with an above-average arm and will be a solid defender in right field,” wrote Baseball America (subs. req’d) in their pre-draft scouting report.

Keep tabs on the team’s draft pool with our 2013 Draft Pool page.

7/12-7/14 Series Preview: Minnesota Twins
Derek Jeter has Grade I quad strain, will not play this weekend
  • dkidd

    and swisher begat judge, and we saw that he was big

  • http://deleted Richard Leo

    Judge got his money

    • YankeeGrunt

      He got a face-saving overpayment. Not enough to set precedent, well short of what Judge was looking for, but enough for him to pretend it was worth holding out.

      • Cliff

        It’s not worth holding out for $100,000?

        • I’m One

          It would sure help my bank account (or retirement fund or whatever I put it towards). Even the amount above $100k that he got wouldn’t be turned away.

        • RetroRob

          Oh, yeah. An extra $120K is worth holding out for. I know when we all hear a million this or a million that, an extra 100K sounds like a rounding error. For a Derek Jeter or an A-Rod it is. For a kid who may never even make the Majors and will not make much in the minors in the coming years, it is certainly the right decision.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        And we’ll all have forgotten in about a month.

  • Duh Injuries

    Just what the Yankees need: a power-hitter who bats .250, strikes out alot, and (the article forgot to mention) won’t get on base, most likely.

    Great way to spend (blow) $1.8M, Yankees.

    I’m confused. The Yankees let go of a Gold Glove caliber shortstop in Ramiro Pena who’s still costing peanuts but give this oaf close to two mil? HUH?

    I hope the kid pans out but that’s not the scouting report I want to hear for a draft pick with the sixth highest paid bonus in team history.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Oh boy.

      • JAG

        I have no quote, but I feel like the scouting report listed for Judge is pretty much the scouting report for…Giancarlo Stanton. Right? Righty high-strikeout hitter with “light-tower power” and a solid defensive profile?

        I’m not in any way saying that’s a fair comp, but if that’s the scouting report, what does this guy WANT from a top prospect?

        • pat

          Only difference is that Stanton was a 17 y/o HS senior not a 21 y/o college junior. Stanton would have hit 80 HR a year if he went to college.

        • I’m One

          what does this guy WANT from a top prospect?

          Good make up?

          • Cool Lester Smooth

            How the hell is this a makeup concern? Once everyone else signed quickly he knew that he would probably e able to get some more money.

            If anything, this shows that he’s savvy, not that he has bad makeup.

          • Greg

            Yankees: “$1.00, take it or leave it”

            Judge: “Too low”

            I’m One: “Bad makeup!”

    • John C

      Boy are you stupid Charlie Brown!!!!!!!

    • Evan3457

      Pena? Seriously?

    • nycsportzfan

      Is this a joke? Judge has a monster power bat with speed and projects to be a CF’er who can cover ground. This guys got monster upside.

    • Jason

      Were your parents related?

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Somehow, if Big Member posted this, we’d think it was funny, but it’s you, so it brings on nothing but sadness.

    • Mike

      Because Judge has a way higher ceiling. Ramiro was never a talented hitter. He was alright w/ the glove. Aaron Judge is no slouch in the OF. As for the money. The kid needs to secure a future. In the event he gets hurt one day, this money goes for his plan B and health plan. The hitting rewards are too big to pass up. The Yankees scouts missed out on Mike Trout and from what was said he was in their back yard but the Angels picked ahead of them. Judge is a guy they have been watching for awhile now and they weren’t the only ones watching him, The Pirates had guys watching him, Boston too, I’m pretty sure the Dodgers and Angels. So the Yankees got him and kids like him don’t fall that much in the draft. But it’s risk vs reward. From seeing him, kid is an ox and a thoroughbred.

      • Steve (different one)

        The Yankee scouts did not miss on Trout. He was their top choice, they just didn’t have a pick before the Angels.

  • Wolfgang’s Fault

    The Yankees blinked, but who am I to Judge, I ask you?

    • Dr TJ Eckleburg

      1) Very punny

      2) I don’t think you were serious about the blinking part, but I was thinking about that. I think that they have this extra draft pool space anyway that they will lose (I believe). Judge and his agent probably went in believing that at worst they will get slot, bit if they wait the Yankees may have extra money saved elsewhere and may be able to get a couple extra hundred thousand. Pretty smart.

      • Caballo Sin Nombre

        So smart. What if two players try to play the same game next year… or three? Not a great precedent.

        • Jason

          This is nothing new. Players have done this for years.

          • Caballo Sin Nombre

            Except there hasn’t been a pool limit until recently. The penalties (particularly when they start losing future picks) make this strategy much more difficult for the club, particularly one like the Yankees. Prior to the pools, it was just a matter of how much money the club was willing to spend. Now you end up losing elsewhere, and if you have a lot more uncertainty about your high picks due to this gamesmanship, it really limits your ability to go after legitimate signability guys.

        • Dr. TJ Eckelberg

          So what? He has a slot offer on the table.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          It’s part of sports.

          In football, it’s called “holding out of training camp.”

  • Robert

    Another Russell Branyon Type. Yikes

    • Cool Lester Smooth

      Yeah, who would want Giancarlo Stanton in right field when we could get a guy like Ichiro, right?

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Another dalelama type. Yikes.

  • Evan3457

    Sounds a lot like Tony Clark in right field. If he hits that well for his career, it’ll be a good pick.

  • Rizi Walnutz

    Here comes da judge – judge not lest ye be judged – judge dred – I mean there’s lots of possibilities. The baseball side of things, who knows?

    • Cool Lester Smooth

      He is the law.

  • TCMiller30

    “And here comes the pitch.. (Crack!) All Rise!!! that ball is high, it’s far, it issssss gone! The honorable Aaron Judge has left the house that George built!”

    • Robinson Tilapia


    • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

      It is HIGH! It is FAR! It is…let go with warning on the track…

  • Caballo Sin Nombre

    $1.8M even would put the Yankees $114K into the overage penalty area.

    • 28 this year

      Honestly, I am happy the Yankees are going a bit over. They better fucking spend on the draft if they aren’t going to spend elsewhere.

    • beantowbosoxh8er

      I don’t think this is true. I think they are still $500k under their pool….

      • beantowbosoxh8er

        The pool $$ chart isn’t loading for me.

  • Caballo Sin Nombre

    He could be a worthy successor to David Justice.

  • will

    Why not just resign giambi?

    • John C

      Boy, the jokes and sarcasm on this section get drier and drier every day

    • Cool Lester Smooth

      If Aaron Judge turns into half the player Jason Giambi was, this will have been a fantastic pick.

      • Caballo Sin Nombre

        “Half the player Jason Giambi was” would have a .201 OBP and a .260 SA. :)

        • Cool Lester Smooth

          Haha, “half as productive a player as Jason Giambi was,” then.

          • King of Fruitless Hypotheticals

            Half of Giambi is only like 175…

  • emac2

    I find myself less than excited. The idea that the extra 100,000 was more important than getting on the field leaves me concerned about motivation and priorities.

    • BeanTooth

      Pu-lease. This could be the kid’s one shot at making any money. He could have a series of injuries that ruin his career. The Yanks could botch his development. Considering the crap-shoot of his ever making the majors (while passing on a college degree to boot), I’d fault him is he didn’t try to maximize his earnings when he could. $100k ain’t nothing.

    • gc

      STOPPPPP!!! Enough with people pretending they know what’s going on in an athlete’s head!

      • Caballo Sin Nombre

        Right. People, stop speculating! We don’t want to upset gc’s equilibrium with your so-called “fun.”

    • Robinson Tilapia

      It’s like there was never, ever such a thing as “contract negotiations” before. Ever. It’s a new concept that started with Aaron Fucking Judge. Everyone did their contracts like John Stockton and said “Oooh Golly Gee Whillikers, where do I sign?!”

      • Caballo Sin Nombre

        The draft pools and penalties completely change the way negotiations work. The Yankees are now establishing a pattern of behavior under the new rules that agents will consider in the following years. That’s how negotiators work– they try to understand the unstated motivations and thinking of the partner across the table, and maximize the result based on that understanding. The Yankees looked like soft negotiators to me, based on how they did with Judge and Katoh; likely that will be the takeaway for the player agents.

        • BFDeal

          Yankees did nothing different than the other 29 teams. You’re trying to force an issue that has existed for decades regardless of the CBA.

          • Caballo Sin Nombre

            When this is over, I would love to see the stats on how each team did relative to slot, broken down by “signability class”– senior, junior, HS, JuCo. I’m only watching the Yankees and the Sox– they had totally different strategies, so it’s hard to compare– but the Sox seemed better at holding down bonuses– I think they did well in the top 3 rounds. But the Sox had a high-risk strategy that depended on that happening, so perhaps they were more motivated.

    • Cool Lester Smooth

      How much do you make in a year that $100,000 wouldn’t be worth missing 3 weeks of games?

      If he doesn’t make the majors, you know, like most supplemental picks, he’ll be happy as fuck about that extra 100,000.

      • emac2

        He could have gotten his 1.6 and been playing a month ago but decided he would rather take some time off and try to make a little bit more.

        I’m not saying it’s a bad business decision. I’m saying it reduces my excitement and furthers my stereotype of a swing often and hard guy.

        I would have taken the slot money and got going as fast as I could. A million and a half dollars and you are going to say no hoping for an extra 10%?

        • Cool Lester Smooth

          This could be the only time he gets paid more than a pittance to play baseball, especially considering how raw he still is for a college draftee. Maybe he puts that extra 100k away. It’s always better to have an extra 100 thousand dollars, especially as a baseball player.

          • emac2

            Maybe he signs a fast as he can and spends the time looking for an extra 100k in endorsements.

            Maybe getting a jump on the field and on marketing gets him more than investing the 100k.

            I’m not trying to say it’s big but worrying about not making it to the majors wouldn’t be a good sign.

            Not being a little too anxious to get playing isn’t my favorite sign either.

            At best he’s not very confident and at worst he’s not very interested?

            • OhioYanks

              I don’t know, but I doubt many late first rounders are pulling down $100k in endorsements the whole time before they hit MLB let alone in the month that he’s missed.

              Chances are stacked against him making the majors. I wouldn’t care if he was delusional with self-confidence, necessarily, but his agent realizing this is likely to be his only big payday is not something to fault him for. It’s just reality.

              Finally, you don’t know how anxious he is. He might have been really anxious, but his agent and parents and coach all told him to chill out and get paid.

  • Mscott

    Can he get to NYC in time to play RF this afternoon?

  • Mandy S

    We got all 3, that’s good news.

  • Dan

    Any chance they take the $500,000 or so they have left and ink Quantrill?

    • Bronx Bombers23

      If they could find a way to get Quantrill, which I know is a long shot, this draft would be as close to perfect as we could have hoped for.

      Glad we got Judge inked though. Can’t wait to follow his career up thru the minors.

    • Caballo Sin Nombre

      According to my calculations, it’s $283,870; plus the $100K they get automatically, it means they can offer $383,870. However, some of the late round bonuses have not been made public; and as three of those are JC guys, it’s possible some of those went over $100K. $383K is the max, but it could be less. Not enough for Quantrill, as they would have been willing to sign him for $600K-700K+ earlier and foregone the other late-round signability cases.

      • J

        LHP Nestor Cortes and QB/CF/RHP Shane McCarley are two names we are in on with the extra $$$

        • Caballo Sin Nombre

          That would be nice… one thing I was just thinking is whether the Yankees have set a limit on how many bodies they are willing to sign, since they have to find a place to play them. I guess they just keep some of them in training camp; but unless you think they are going to be better than the guys they have already signed, that seems like a waste.

          • OhioYanks

            Not all guys play the year they are drafted, but two GCL teams this year should make it pretty easy to find spaces. Certainly I think there’s a limit to how many guys they will sign just as bodies, but if it’s someone they actually like as a prospect I don’t think there’s a roster space issue.

  • Bryan

    I am wondering like Dan if there are any players left that the Yanks could try and ink.

    Also, how many of the later round picks did the Yankees sign? The draft pool page only follows the top 10 plus guys after 10 who got overslot money. Any other guys sign for less than that?

    • Dan
    • Caballo Sin Nombre

      Sure; maybe a college guy like White (29); or a HS guy who’s just desperate to go pro, but is just a marginal-enough prospect that the Yankees have been monitoring him in a summer league rather than just trowing $100K at him. If you want to see where they stand, go to BA. With Judge in, this could be one of the Yankees’ best hauls ever. Perhaps the best, in terms of depth. They drafted 17 players in BAs top 500, and signed 14. In contrast, the Red Sox, who tend to do well at this, drafted 19 top 500’s and seem to have signed only 11.


      • Cool Lester Smooth

        GE Red Sox “do well” at this because their scouts are the ones talking to BA.

        • Caballo Sin Nombre

          Lol! Yankee fan conspiracy theorist! I can’t prove you wrong, which is one of the great things about conspiracy theories.

          • JohnnyC

            Breaking Bad reference. Check.

  • Caballo Sin Nombre

    BTW, did anyone else notice the Sox failed to sign their fourth-round pick, who was ranked 108 by BA? That’s a mini-disaster, as they get no comp pick next year, and lose the slot money. Definitely a FU.

  • Mike

    I caught the kid playing live. For people thinking he’s Russ Branyon, he ain’t. This guy is a beast. I saw him make a play from CF to RF that lets just say had me questioning how he isn’t a football player.

    Same game he hits this towering shot off a 90 mph pitch, it was just foul, but I haven’t seen kids like this guy. Now that he’s 100% baseball they might work with his launch position and make him shorter to the ball. He’s one to keep an eye on.

  • Greg

    At last…the inevitable.

    Between Thomas and O’Neill, the SI outfield has set a pretty high bar for striking out. Can’t wait to see if Judge can top them.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      If not, they could always promote Austin Aune.

      The Staten Island Yankees: your new Generation K.

  • rwh

    Will there be a Friday chat today?

  • YouthMovement

    Yanks signed 36th round pick Nestor Cortes.

  • Coolerking101

    88.5K in tax? Sheesh. Hal spends that much each year lighting his cigars with 100 dollar bills.