As Aaron Judge goes, so go the New York Yankees.
The free-agent outfielder is the linchpin of general manager Brian Cashman’s off-season plans.
If he redraws the slugger, Cashman won’t have much money to pay for other needs, like a third outfielder and help for the bullpen.
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When Judge decides to head west, Cashman has a big gap to fill the lineup and a boatload of cash to pull it off.
Jim Bowden of The Athletic predicts that if the Yankees don’t re-sign Judge, “I expect the Yankees to turn around soon and try to sign Justin Verlander or Jacob deGrom along with an outfielder like (Brandon) Nimmo.”
According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the Yankees’ “trust level of Verlander is low,” but “Yankees like (Carlos) Rodon very much.”
MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports the potential suitors for Verlander, the three-time Cy Young Award winner, include the Yankees and New York Mets. The other teams on Feinsand’s list of Verlander suitors are the Houston Astros, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Toronto Blue Jays.
Jacob de Grom
It is believed DeGrom has his eye on the record-breaking three-year, $130 million contract signed last year by Mets teammate Max Scherzer.
On Wednesday, SNY’s Andy Martino reported, “With the Rangers now looking very interested in a free agent starter Carlos Rodon, could the situation break the Mets way according to league sources? After all, if the Rangers pass on deGrom, who but the Mets will offer deGrom a three-year contract?
The Rangers were seen as the Mets’ main competitor for deGrom.
Martino reported Tuesday “I don’t think the Yankees are signing deGrom or (Kodai) Senga. That’s the feeling I get when reporting. I think the Mets can get them both. I don’t think the Yankees will sign either
That came a day after SNY reported, “The Yankees recently requested medical information on deGrom, according to a league source. … The Yankees are only the fourth team, including the Mets, to be known to show interest.
On Saturday, Mike Puma of the New York Post reported that “the Rangers, (Los Angeles) Dodgers, (Chicago) Cubs and Yankees are among the other teams that could be in play for deGrom, whose previous deal charged him $32. 5 million to be received next season.”
Jon Heyman of the New York Post reports, “The Giants, Rays and Blue Jays are among the many teams committed to Brandon Nimmo, plus, of course, the Mets.” Heyman also reports that the New York Yankees “have been in touch with Brandon Nimmo as well, but he’s expensive enough to probably only be in the game if (Aaron) Judge were to leave.”
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Last week, SNY’s Andy Martino reported that Nimmo is meeting in person with teams and that several teams have indicated that they would move their centerfielder to corner for Nimmo. Martino reports that the list of interested clubs includes the Mets, Yankees, Colorado Rockies and Blue Jays “and that’s far from a complete bookkeeping.”
Keep in mind that the Mets are not hiding that they are serious about re-signing Nimmo. He is regarded as the club’s top priority after re-signing closer Edwin Diaz earlier this month.
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Mike Rosenstein can be reached at [email protected].