Lastings Milledge clears waivers, remains with White Sox at Triple-A

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Designated for assignment by the White Sox last week, Lastings Milledge has cleared waivers and accepted and assignment to Triple-A, according to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.

That means he’ll remain in Chicago’s organization, but won’t take up a spot on the 40-man roster and can’t be called up again unless the White Sox add him to the roster first (in which case they’d have to waive him again prior to another trip to Triple-A).

Milledge’s stock has obviously plummeted in recent years, as he’s gone from one-time top prospect to clearing waivers at age age 26, but I’m still somewhat surprised that another team didn’t take a flier on him as a backup outfielder.

He’s a good defender in either corner spot who can fake center field for short stretches at a time, and while his overall offensive game hasn’t developed as hoped Milledge is a career .287 hitter with a .793 OPS versus left-handed pitching. As a fourth outfielder or the right-handed-hitting portion of a platoon, he’s still useful.

Source: Aaron Judge, Yankees reach $360M, 9-year deal

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — Aaron Judge has agreed to return to the New York Yankees on a $360 million, nine-year contract, according to a person familiar with the deal.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on Wednesday because the deal had not been announced.

Judge will earn $40 million per season, the highest average annual payout for a position player. The contract trails only Mike Trout’s $426.5 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels and Mookie Betts’ $365 million pact with the Los Angeles Dodgers for biggest in baseball history.

Judge was offered a long-term deal by New York before last season that was worth $213.5 million over seven years from 2023-29. But he turned it down in the hours before opening day in April.

The 6-foot-7 Judge bet on himself — and won.

Judge set an American League record with 62 homers in 2022, powering the Yankees to the AL East title. He also tied for the major league lead with 131 RBIs and just missed a Triple Crown with a .311 batting average.

New York was swept by Houston in the AL Championship Series, but Judge became the first AL MVP for the Yankees since Alex Rodriguez in 2007.

Judge, 30, was selected by New York in the first round of the 2013 amateur draft and made his big league debut in 2016, homering in his first at-bat.

A year later, he was one of baseball’s breakout stars. He hit .284 with 52 homers and 114 RBIs in 2017, winning the AL Rookie of the Year award. The four-time All-Star has 220 homers and 497 RBIs in seven big league seasons.