Aaron Judge isn’t the only big-name free agent on the Yankees’ wish list.
In addition to re-signing the single-season American League home run record-holder, New York is also looking to solidify its rotation, according to the New York Post’s Jon Heyman. The Yankees’ pursuits even include three fairly coveted arms.
“The Yankees … have been in contact with Hall of Fame-bound Justin Verlander, Japanese star Kodai Senga and resurgent lefty Carlos Rodon as well as middle-of-the-order types, such as their own Jameson Taillon,” Heyman wrote Thursday.
Verlander going to New York seems unlikely, as the 39-year-old has been resurgent for the Houston Astros. He’s coming off a Cy Young Award and World Series-winning season in Houston, so it seems likely he’d want to remain there.
Where Rodon ends up is anyone’s guess. Although he’s not a surefire Hall of Famer like Verlander or the latest sexy Japanese import like Senga, he’s developed into one of the top pitchers in the game the past two seasons after battling injuries early in his career. Rodon earned an All-Star nod in 2021, bet on himself and garnered another All-Star honor while boasting a career-best 31 starts in 2022, and looks poised to headline some team’s rotation in 2023.
Senga, for his part, apparently is a hard-throwing right-hander who’s been described as an “ace.” He’s been linked to multiple teams, including the Red Sox, reportedly seeking a multi-year deal.
Regardless of whether New York lands any of these pitchers — or opts to go with middle-of-the-rotation depth instead — it’s unlikely Yankees fans will be persuaded to see this as a successful offseason if the team fails to retain Judge.