Who knew that when the Yankees were choosing to jettison Tyler Wade as part of some post-2021 Rule 5 Draft prep (for a draft that never happened) that they might be signing their own death warrant with Aaron Judge?
Overdramatic? Sure. And there’s no reason to keep players at the margins of your roster on the basis of friendship. But the timing of the cut was suspect, considering Wade had finally had his first semi-effective season, hitting .268 with speed in 103 games.
Elite? No. But the current backup shortstop plan is “Marwin Gonzalez and pray for rain.” It was surprising the Yankees willingly sacrificed depth at the position.
Now, Wade is a Los Angeles Angel of Anaheim, serving as the backup (once again) behind ex-Yankee Andrew Velazquez. He’s also waiting in the weeds in more ways than one.
As the speedster lurks during the final two games of this three-game set, just waiting to steal a revenge base or smack a key single like he’s Taylor Freaking Walls, he’s also reuniting with Judge off the field to catch up, swap stories, and sell the slugger on joining the LAA.
See? Ripple effects. Not something to worry about, just something WORRY ABOUT.
Will Aaron Judge follow Tyler Wade from Yankees to Angels?
Of course, Judge went 0-fer in the opening game of this series, leading logical and rational fans to conclude Wade’s message was on his mind.
Wade made his statements with a wink and a prayer prior to the game, but he also knew exactly what he was doing to a fan base that struggles to find joy, even with a 34-15 record. Add in some more Judge worries following his MLB Network interview over the weekend, and you’ve got the crowd on tilt.
Behold, though, an Angels fan who does not get it whatsoever:
Are the Angels a realistic Judge destination? They’re ascendant, set with Trout/Ohtani/Taylor Ward for years, but could use Judge as a DH on occasion, something he’ll rarely do in New York. He and Ohtani can flip between the outfield and the “designated masher” role, and he can get off his feet every so often.
Add in the California factor … and it’s not quite as enticing as his hometown Giants, but it’s a more likely destination than the Mets.
Judge will be looking to get what’s his this offseason, and he’s almost inarguably more important to the Yankees than they are to him. Unless a bromance pulls things apart, the reunion plan is likely still in place — though the pressure’s in the Bombers’ court right now.