After tons of speculation as to where he could end up, Aaron Judge ultimately committed to the New York Yankees for the long-term, signing a mammoth nine-year, $360 million extension on Wednesday. Judge had offers on the table from the San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres and the latter actually offered him more, but the slugger evidently loves the Big Apple and wanted to stay put.

With a no-trade clause in the deal, that means Judge will remain a Bronx Bomber until he's nearly 40 years old. But after the year he just had en route to American League MVP, it's no surprise the Yankees forked out the money to keep him. The question is, was it the right decision?

Here are grades for the Aaron Judge contract with New York.


Grading The Aaron Judge $360 million Deal With Yankees


There is no doubt what Judge is capable of. The man just slugged 62 home runs in a single season, broke an AL record, and pretty much carried the Yankees all season long. A nine-year extension does seem like a lot, but it's not like he's going to start struggling anytime soon. Judge not only hit well over .300 in 2022, but he also had a WAR of 10.6. That's frankly unheard of in the Majors. While he does turn 31 in April, Judge is a superb athlete who could very well play at a high level into his late 30s. He's mobile in the outfield, runs fairly well, and of course, rakes.

For any team that commits to a player for this many years, there is always a little bit of risk to it. After all, you never know what can happen. However, the Yankees aren't exactly going to hurt a lot if it doesn't work out. They have the money. Plus, Judge is just on a career trajectory that screams success. The only possible concern is how susceptible to injury he's been at times. With that being said, he's played at least 150 games in the last two years and flourished while doing so.

The Yankees had to pay Aaron Judge. He's an absolute icon in the Bronx and the cornerstone of this franchise. Letting him walk because they were too cheap to give him the world would've been bad news and the backlash from fans and the media would've been well… very bad, too. He can play center field if needed, play a dominant right, and just destroy any arm out there at the plate. Aaron Judge has already proven to be arguably the best hitter in baseball and will now be paid like it. He's made it clear time and time again that he wants to be in pinstripes for the rest of his career. Leaving was never Judge's first choice, but he was willing to do so if the Yankees didn't pay up.

Bronx Bombers supporters should be absolutely ecstatic that Aaron Judge is staying put. As previously mentioned, there's always some risk with such a huge deal. But, if there was one player the Yankees were going to reward with a contract like this, it's Aaron Judge. The production doesn't look to be tailing off. It's just a matter of him staying healthy and helping this team win. Frankly, the Yankees would've been screwed if Judge left.

The only option was to keep him. A solid situation for both parties.