Aaron Judge will begin the 2022 season without a new contract.
Shortly before commencing Friday's opening game against the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said the star outfielder turned down a long-term extension.
Per ESPN's Jeff Passan, the team offered a seven-year, $213.5 million contract starting in 2023 along with their $17 million arbitration offer for 2022.
The contract would have given Judge the highest average annual salary of any position player in Yankees history, topping the $27.5 million Alex Rodriguez agreed to after the 2006 season.
Judge and the Yankees are unlikely to resume contract negotiations until after the season. However, they still must finalize an amount for this season.
As explained by The Athletic's Lindsey Adler, Judge filed a $21 million salary for his final year of arbitration. However, a hearing won't take place until June because of MLB's winter lockout.
Judge will get paid in line with the $17 million filed by the Yankees. If an arbitrator sides with Judge, he'll get paid the difference in interest. They could still agree on a one-year arrangement to avoid a hearing.
Per Adler, Cashman expressed hope of still extending Judge "not now, but hopefully later.”
Judge batted .287/.373/.544 with 39 home runs last season, but the 6-foot-7, 282-pound slugger missed time in each of the previous three years. Another abbreviated season could derail his market value, especially since he turns 30 this moth. Yet Judge is undoubtedly one of the game's premier players when healthy, and he could get paid as such on the open market next offseason.