When Anthony Rizzo was traded to the New York Yankees from the Chicago Cubs in the summer of 2021, Aaron Judge would have a keen eye on how Rizzo went about his business of preparation.
Little did Judge know how much leadership Rizzo would show upon his arrival, and the demeanor was something that rubbed off on the rest of the Yankees clubhouse.
As Aaron Judge works into his role as the newest team captain, he recalls what he picked up from Rizzo as soon as he became a teammate, per Yankees beat writer Bryan Hoch.
“This was a guy that just got traded away from a great franchise to the New York Yankees, and we’re on a playoff run,” Judge said. “It was like, ‘How’s this guy going to handle himself?’ He stepped right into that role of being a leader from Day 1. That was one thing that I picked up a lot from Anthony.”
One thing Rizzo was bringing to New York was championship experience. He was part of the Cubs team that won the franchise’s first World Series title in over a century in 2016. Since Rizzo has been a member of the Yankees, he and Judge developed a bond, and that was key in keeping the new captain in pinstripes during Judge’s free-agency period.
In other words, Judge and Rizzo have become BFFs, and with every move being made watched by the ultra-bright media market known as New York City, one can bet Judge will continue to lean on Rizzo for guidance on leadership.
From the sound of things, that’s not a bad place to go to.