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Aroldis Chapman Signs With Yankees

Aroldis Chapman Signs With Yankees Arturo Pardavila III via


Closer Aroldis Chapman signs record deal with the New York Yankees

Flame-throwing closer Aroldis Chapman has signed with the New York Yankees. The deal is for five years, and is worth $86 million; making Chapman the highest paid reliever to ever play the game of baseball.

Ever since the Yankees traded Chapman to the Chicago Cubs at the trade deadline, many could see this move coming. Whether or not the Yankees want to admit it, they are rebuilding and trying to make their team younger for the future. They took a huge step in that direction when they acquired Gleyber Torres along with three other pieces from the Cubs in July. Torres was the centerpiece of the deal, even though he is still a couple of years away from the majors. The 19-year old shortstop hit 11 home runs, and had 66 RBI’s in Single-A this season and could be the corner-stone of the Yankees in the near future.

So why did the Cubs trade their top prospect for a guy that they knew they could not re-sign? The answer is simple. The Chicago Cubs were in a win now mode in 2016. They had all the pieces to make a push toward the World Series, but one piece was missing. Chapman brought his 100+ MPH fastball to Chicago, and helped them win a World Series for the first time in over 100 years.

For the Cubs, giving up their top prospect in order to acquire a lock-down closer for half of a season was worth it. Chicago has already found its closer for the 2017 season in Wade Davis, who will cost less than Chapman would have. Now, the Yankees found themselves in a position to make the deal for Chapman, and they pulled the trigger.

Here is what Chapman brings to the table. His fastball regularly reaches triple digits, he has a high strikeout rate, and he does not give up home runs. In 2016, Chapman struck out 90 batters in 58 innings, and allowed only two home runs. He had a 1.55 ERA in 2016, and an even better 1.01 ERA in his 28 appearances with the Cubs.

The signing of Chapman will give the Yankees a fearsome presence in the back-end of their bullpen. With Dellin Betances already in New York, the Yankees now have a 1-2 punch in the late innings. Of course, the 1-2 punch use to be a 1-2-3 punch before the Yankees traded Andrew Miller to the Cleveland Indians.

Even though their set-up man is gone, the Yankees still have one of the best closers in the game. Now, that closer is locked up for the long-term with no chance of him being traded.

The Yankees played the Aroldis Chapman situation perfectly. At the 2016 trade deadline, the Yankees realized that they were probably not going to make the playoffs. They had two of the best relief pitchers in the game (Miller and Chapman), and decided to shop them around. Chapman drew enough interest from the Cubs that they traded their top prospect as well as other pieces to the Yankees for three months of control over Chapman. The Yankees knew that Chapman would want to come back to New York in 2017, so they pulled the trigger on the trade. Now, the Yankees have their fire-balling closer back and prospects to build around in the future.

Lets just hope this record deal for Chapman does not backfire.