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Report: Yankees, Aaron Judge avoid arbitration with $8.5 million deal

Matt Johnson
© Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees have avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $8.5 million contract with star outfielder Aaron Judge, per MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand.

Judge, who was projected to receive $6.4 million in arbitration per MLBTradeRumors, became arbitration-eligible for the first time this season and will remain under contract over the next three years through the arbitration process.

The 27-year-old missed nearly two months of action this season with an oblique injury that he suffered in April. After returning to the diamond on June 21, Judge hit just six home runs across his next 117 at-bats entering August.

He rediscovered his incredible power in August. Judge hit 16 home runs with a .266/.364/.590 slash line in his final 188 at-bats to finish the regular season. He ended the season with 27 home runs and a .921 OPS in 102 games, but hit just one home run in nine playoff games.

Now with his contract for the 2020 season established, the two-time All-Star outfielder can focus his efforts on preparing for spring training. Given New York’s aspirations for a World Series title, he will be hoping to return to the superstar form that helped him dominate MLB in 2017.