Aaron Judge’s Contract Extension: Why the Yankees RF Chose Free Agency

Welcome to The Opener, where every weekday morning during the regular season you’ll get a new topical column to start your day from one of SI.com’s MLB writers.

During the lockdown, when players fought for more money for younger players, a veteran front office executive told me they already had a tool for that very goal.

“More super players should go for five years to listen [in arbitration] Over a lot,” the source said. “Even if I win a low percentage of those cases, the wins set new precedents. Players with a five-year jury can compare themselves to players in any service class. So Tria Turner can compare himself to Francisco Lindor. And it was those victories that set the standards for the group behind them.”

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