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Around the Empire: Yankees - 2/27/23

Aaron Judge excited to hear the home crowd’s cheers; Anthony Volpe shows why he’s a top prospect; MLBPA reasserts opposition to salary cap

MLB: FEB 26 Spring Training - Yankees at Blue Jays Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

ESPN | Marly Rivera: For the first time since signing his nine-year, $360 million contract this past winter, Aaron Judge donned the pinstripes and stepped to the plate for a Yankees home game. Sure, it’s only spring training, and it was in Tampa, not the Bronx, but nonetheless, it represented for the Yankees Captain “an exciting moment,” the desired end goal for his free agent journey. | Randy Miller: While Judge heard the cheers rain down on him in Tampa, a top prospect turned heads on the road in Dunedin. Making his first spring training start, Anthony Volpe went two-for-four with a single, a double, and two stolen bases, and he easily handled the two ground balls hit his way. The No. 5 ranked prospect has a bit of an uphill climb to crack the Opening Day roster — because he has only a handful of games at the Triple-A level, fellow top prospect Oswald Peraza is considered the favorite for the job — but he certainly got himself off to a good start.

Sports Illustrated | Nick Selbe: Maybe one day, we’ll have a spring training with no labor concerns on the horizon. Earlier this week, Rob Manfred announced the creation of an economic reform committee to investigate revenue disparities between large and big markets (I refuse to call them big and small markets, as the San Diego Padres proves that false) and to handle potential changes to regional sports network distributions. Yesterday, MLBPA executive director Tony Clark reiterated the union’s opposition to a salary cap, implying that one of the reform committee’s unspoken goals will be to depress player salaries.