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SportsWatch: Aaron Judge signs $360 million deal with Yankees — at $40 million a year, he’ll be the highest paid position player in MLB

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Aaron Judge has agreed to return to the New York Yankees on a $360 million, nine-year contract, according to Tuesday reports from the MLB Network and Fox.

Judge will make $40 million per season on his new deal with the Yankees, the highest average annual payout for a position player in MLB history. The new deal is the third largest overall contract in MLB history in total value, only behind Mike Trout’s $426.5 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels and Mookie Betts’ $365 million deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

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Judge, 30, turned down a seven-year, $213.5 million extension from the Yankees before this season, according to Yankees President Brian Cashman, in hopes of earning more in free agency. He appears to have done that with this agreement.

Judge is coming off his best season as a professional after winning the American League MVP award and leading the Yankees to a division title. While an MVP award is usually a telltale sign that a player just had a special season, it was actually even more magical than that.

See also: Dropping Aaron Judge’s 61st home-run ball might have cost this fan $250,000 or more

Judge broke the American League home-run record of 61, set by Roger Maris in 1961, when he hit 62 home runs last season. The only players in history who have hit more than 61 home runs in a single season played in the National League — and they have been linked to steroid use.

Before his new reported deal, in his seven seasons as a big leaguer, Judge has earned a total of just $36 million from his contracts, according to Spotrac, for a career average annual salary of $5.14 million, not appreciably higher than the game’s current average of $4.4 million. He was the 54th highest paid player in the MLB last season at $19 million.

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Judge, was selected by New York in the first round of the 2013 MLB draft and made his big league debut in 2016.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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