There are football field goal posts near home plate at Yankee Stadium as the stadium prepares to host the Bad Boy Mowers Pinstripe Bowl on December 29, a game between the Universities of Minnesota and Syracuse.
“Aaron is someone I know and respect and love, having been through the struggle together,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “So there’s that esteem and the excitement of bringing back an iconic player. And on the other side, we bring a super talented guy (Rodón) that we are still getting to know. He is exciting in different ways.”
As the Yankees officially announced the new $360 million, nine-year contract, principal team owner Hal Steinbrenner revealed Judge would be the club’s 16th captain in franchise history. And he said it in the presence of Derek Jeter, the last captain of the Bronx Bombers.
“This is an honor I don’t take lightly,” Judge said. “I will continue to be the same leader that I have been for the last six years. He will continue to lead by example. I know there’s going to be a couple more responsibilities with this, but I’m here to get you through every hurdle. I will continue to lead this team and this city to not just one, but multiple championships.”
The next day, it was Rodón’s turn to hold a press conference. The Yankees had been targeting the left-hander for quite some time, which included trying to trade the starter at this year’s trade deadline. The Giants decided not to trade him, but New York ultimately sought his services.
“Winning has been at the top of my list as a player,” Rodón said. “As we already know, this is the ‘Yankee Way.’ I have always enjoyed pitching at Yankee Stadium; I seem to have good numbers here. Just putting on this striped uniform is something special. Many legends have been with this organization. There’s a lot of history here.”
With new contracts for Judge, Rodon, first baseman Anthony Rizzo and right-hander Tommy Kahnle, Steinbrenner emphasized that the Yankees aren’t done. The next area of focus would be left field. New York general manager Brian Cashman is believed to have contacted the Pirates about a trade for outfielder Bryan Reynolds, who has requested to be traded by Pittsburgh.
“For me, there’s always something else to do,” Cashman said. “These are important tasks and that task has already been done, but there is always more. Your team is never perfect until you win a championship.”
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“There is always something else to do.” The Yankees would go for more