It should be noted, while Olney reported the ‘soft’ Angels-Yankees rumor, there are no serious speculations about New York actively seeking a trade involving Judge.
I think part of the reason Olney dropped this gossip is due to the struggles of the Bronx Bombers at the moment. A 9-12 record and last place in the AL East is far below the World Series expectations they had going into the season. Given his team-friendly contract, maybe if the struggles continue through July the Yankees would consider moving some pieces around with Judge being one of them.
Trading for Aaron Judge involves one or more Angels top prospects and it still might not be enough.
Judge, who turns 29-years old on April 26, will make $10.175 million during this season and will enter his final year of arbitration in the upcoming offseason. Two full years of team control at a relatively cheap price would mean the Halos would likely have to part with one or more of their best young arms (No.2 Reid Detmers and No.4 Chris Rodriguez) in exchange for Judge. Due to the Angels needing pitching just as much as the Yankees do, it makes the decision more difficult and little to no sense. It would also likely mean the Halos parting ways with a young outfielder in their farm system.
Making this happen now means a huge impact in whatever future plan(s) the Angels currently have in place. It could happen, but would require making additional moves to fix whatever the team originally had planned for guys like Adell, Marsh, Detmers, Rodriguez, etc.
Minasian and Moreno have not shown the ability to think that far ahead. Their moves all seem to be one step at a time, little risk, and they wait for guaranteed results to happen before making decisions. That’s exactly how they’ve structured the 2021 roster, which is why nearly all of their additions do not have contracts beyond this season.
The one-year rentals provide the Angels with an opportunity to maybe contend if things go well, but none of the players have a track record which provides a feeling of guaranteed positive results. If the plan fails and the Halos fall out of contention by July, expect an early start to a retooling for 2022.
That’s why I don’t think expectations of a trade for Judge should be high. It would take one heck of a dice roll, which goes against Minisian and Moreno’s game plan thus far. Even if it happened, I’m not sure Judge is the type of offensive player who would help this current roster.