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After Yankees’ Anthony Rizzo opts to stay in Bronx, he lobbies for Aaron Judge to return

Anthony Rizzo is staying put in New York after agreeing to a contract extension with the Yankees, but he also would like to have Aaron Judge remain in the Bronx.

“I hope Judge stays just for the sake of the game,” Rizzo said Wednesday, “because you see a lot of franchise icons not getting what they deserve for the team that they have done so much for.”

Rizzo inked a two-year contract worth $40 million Tuesday, a few days after he declined a $16 million player option.

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Anthony Rizzo of the New York Yankees celebrates his RBI double in the second inning against the Houston Astros in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series at Yankee Stadium Oct. 23, 2022, in the Bronx borough of New York City.
(Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

“My wife, Emily, and I really love it here. We love the city. We love the energy. We love Yankee Stadium. We love going to Yankee Stadium and playing at that park every day,” Rizzo said. “And you look at the team. The New York Yankees are a team that — this organization, this franchise — that has consistently put winning products on the field.”

Rizzo’s deal includes a team option for the 2025 season.

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Rizzo said Judge offered his congratulations shortly after the deal was announced.

“Just congratulations — the basics: ‘Well deserved. Happy for you. Say hi to Emily,'” Rizzo noted.

Judge, who remains a free agent, is coming off a historic season in which he broke the American League single-season home run record. The 30-year-old outfielder hit 62 home runs and added 131 RBIs during the regular season.

The New York Yankees' Anthony Rizzo connects for an RBI hit against the Houston Astros during the fourth inning of Game 4 of the American League Championship Series Oct. 23, 2022, in New York.

The New York Yankees’ Anthony Rizzo connects for an RBI hit against the Houston Astros during the fourth inning of Game 4 of the American League Championship Series Oct. 23, 2022, in New York.
(G3 Box News Photo/Seth Wenig)

Rizzo hit 32 home runs and knocked in 75 runs in 2022 after being traded from the Chicago Cubs in 2021. 

During his tenure in Chicago’s north side, Rizzo helped lift the Cubs to a World Series title in 2016, the franchise’s first championship in 108 years.

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“Just playing baseball isn’t enough in a big market. There’s a lot of other things that come with that, and I enjoy doing those things,” Rizzo said. “I enjoy taking responsibility to do those things, to stand up to talk to the media, good, bad or indifferent. 

“And I think that really teaches you a lot about this game of baseball, and it teaches you valuable lessons in your own life. Everyone loves you when you’re good — your coaches, the media, your friends, everyone, you’re the greatest thing on earth. But things go bad, that’s when you really find out who you are.”

New York Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo and center fielder Aaron Judge in the dugout in the 3rd inning in Game 4 of the ALCS at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, N.Y., Oct 23, 2022.

New York Yankees first baseman Anthony Rizzo and center fielder Aaron Judge in the dugout in the 3rd inning in Game 4 of the ALCS at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, N.Y., Oct 23, 2022.
(Thomas A. Ferrara/Newsday RM via Getty Images)

Rizzo also discussed how baseball’s upcoming rules changes could impact his game next year.

“I’m hoping, obviously optimistically, like every lefty, I feel like I get very affected by the shifts, as a lot of lefties around the league,” he said.

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Major League Baseball previously announced several rules changes for 2023, including implementing a pitch clock and a ban of the defensive shift.

“Those maybe meaningless little singles that get in the hole there, I feel like turn a lot of us lefties into a very dangerous hitter,” Rizzo added.

The G3 Box News contributed to this report.

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