Report: J.D. Martinez is seeking a contract in the $200 million range

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ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that free agent outfielder, represented by Scott Boras, is seeking a contract in the range of $200 million.

This time of year, we often hear whispers of what the top free agents are seeking on the total market and it’s often met with derision. Martinez, however, is coming off of an incredible 2017 campaign in which he hit .303/.376/.690 with 45 home runs and 104 RBI in 489 plate appearances between the Tigers and Diamondbacks.

Martinez, 30, was in particular dominant after joining the D-Backs on July 18. He cranked out 29 homers and knocked in 65 runs in 257 PA in the span of 62 games. The Diamondbacks finished 96-66, earning home field advantage against the Rockies in the National League Wild Card game, which they won.

Is Martinez worth $200 million? Yeah, probably. Will he get it? Probably not. Last year, Yoenis Cespedes snagged the largest contract among position players, inking a four-year, $110 million deal with the Mets. He was followed by Dexter Fowler, who signed a five-year, $82.5 million deal. But you always start high in negotiations and work your way towards the middle. In any case, I’d rather see the players get more than they’re worth — which is not the case here — than have the owners pocket more money.

Aaron Judge out of Yankees starting lineup for finale after No. 62

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ARLINGTON, Texas — Yankees slugger Aaron Judge wasn’t in the starting lineup for New York’s regular-season finale, a day after his 62nd home run that broke Roger Maris’ 61-year-old American League single-season record.

When Judge homered in the first inning Tuesday night, in the second game of a doubleheader against the Texas Rangers, it was his 55th consecutive game. He has played in 157 games overall for the AL East champions.

With the first-round bye in the playoffs, the Yankees won’t open postseason play until the AL Division Series starts next Tuesday.

Even though Judge had indicated that he hoped to play Wednesday, manager Aaron Boone said after Tuesday night’s game that they would have a conversation and see what made the most sense.

“Short conversation,” Boone said before Wednesday’s game, adding that he was “pretty set on probably giving him the day today.”

Asked if there was a scenario in which Judge would pinch hit, Boone responded, “I hope not.”

Judge went into the final day of the regular season batting .311, trailing American League batting average leader Minnesota’s Luis Arraez, who was hitting .315. Judge was a wide leader in the other Triple Crown categories, with his 62 homers and 131 RBIs.

Boone said that “probably the one temptation” to play Judge had been the long shot chance the slugger had to become the first AL Triple Crown winner since Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera in 2012.