MLB Rumors: How Far Apart Are Judge & Yankees For Arbitration Hearing?

In the midst of an MVP-caliber season, many New York Yankees observers may have forgotten that Aaron Judge is not signed yet—for this season, much less the future. His arbitration hearing is Wednesday, and the outcome of that, depending on how things go, could have an impact on any extension talks.

How far apart are they? 

Judge has asked for $21M in this, his final year of arbitration before free agency, while the Yankees have countered with $17M. Considering the enormity of Judge's season, how can the front office hope to reasonably downplay his worth? 

Of course, the current season's stats are not supposed to be entered into the discussions, but one could say that they're impossible to ignore. 

Judge is leading the world in home runs, with 25, as well as runs scored, with 55. His 50 RBIs, .301 average and 1.026 OPS are also on the leader boards, and he is indeed the frontrunner for AL MVP.

If the Yankees still hope to have cordial discussions with Judge on a long-term contract, Step One would be to somehow avoid the unpleasantness of an arbitration hearing. 

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