aaron judge yankees
Jayne Kamin-Oncea | USA TODAY Sports

Prior to Opening Day this past April, Aaron Judge turned down a $213.5 million extension offer from the Yankees. Betting on himself to outperform it was a bold move. Now that we’re in September, it seems like his decision will pay off handsomely this winter.

But could it come at the expense of him leaving the Bronx and heading to the Red Sox? The possibility is there because Boston could use a legit outfield bat and has the financial flexibility to make it happen. However, we’re not totally convinced Judge skipping town for Fenway Park is a true threat just yet.

Dan Shaughnessy of The Boston Globe offered some perspective on a disappointing Red Sox season and a winter ahead that has several questions executive Chaim Bloom must answer. With many holes on the roster as the organization starts thinking about 2023, Shaughnessy made one interesting note. 

He pointed to a report from Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic stating the Red Sox currently have just $92 million committed to next year’s roster. So, there appears to be plenty of room on Boston’s balance sheet to make a run at Judge. They’d have to get a couple of other things settled first, though.

That’d include figuring out if they can agree on long-term deals for Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts.


Devers has one year of arbitration eligibility left in 2023 before hypothetically entering free agency the following season. As for Bogaerts, he’s in the midst of a six-year, $120 million contract but will be opting out of the final three years and $60 million at season’s end. All the Red Sox have done for their shortstop so far was propose a one-year extension on his current deal, which would’ve made it a four-year, $90 million contract. That wasn’t received well by Bogaerts’ camp.

Let’s also not forget that one of the first big moves Bloom made upon taking charge of Boston’s baseball operations was shipping Mookie Betts to the Dodgers. Everyone has their own process and opinion on how things should be done to build a consistent winner, so that won’t be my criticism here.

However, before rumors can start churning about the Red Sox pursuing Judge in free agency, they’ll first have to show a desire to lock up any elite players. You know, like the ones currently on their roster.

Anything can happen once a player hits free agency. There’s a lot of time between now and November, so who knows how the situation will look at that point. But right now, it seems like the Giants could be one of the biggest threats (if not the biggest) to the Yankees for Judge, not the Red Sox.

More on ESNY:
• 5 big New York sports talk storylines as fall battle begins
• These under-the-radar Giants rookies could have critical 2022 roles
• NFL insider predicts big things for Jets rookie
Nets’ best-case scenario: From nightmare to championship dream
• Red Bulls’ Dru Yearwood kicks ball into stands, gets red card (VIDEO)
• Here are some potential Jacob deGrom Mets contract numbers

Matt Musico can be reached at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter: @mmusico8.

Matt Musico is an editor for ESNY. He’s been writing about baseball and the Mets for the past decade. His work has been featured on numberFire, MetsMerized Online, Bleacher Report, and Yahoo! Sports.