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Aroldis Chapman to sign with the Reds (1 Viewer)

On The Rocks

Evil Conservative
Chapman to sign with the Reds.

Cuban left-handed pitcher Aroldis Chapman, whose defection sparked a bidding war among major league teams that coveted his 100-mph fastball, agreed Sunday morning to sign for $30 million with the Cincinnati Reds, sources close the negotiations told Yahoo! Sports.

The Reds had been “going after him like crazy,” according to one source, and outbid several other teams, including the Los Angeles Angels, Florida Marlins and Toronto Blue Jays.

The 22-year-old Chapman’s value has steadily climbed since a Dec. 15 workout in Houston in which he wasn’t throwing at full speed and still hit 97 mph. His potential as a front-of-the-line starter intrigued teams from coast to coast.

The bidding increased from an initial $15.5 million offer from the Boston Red Sox in early December to the highest reported proposal of $23 million from Toronto a few days ago.

Chapman immediately becomes the top prospect in the Reds’ system and could join a dangerous young rotation if Edinson Volquez returns healthy from Tommy John surgery and Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey develop. The Reds had been particularly quiet this offseason, sitting on a team that went 78-84 last year.

Where the 22-year-old Chapman begins the season – in the high minor leagues or in the Reds’ rotation – will likely depend on how he pitches in spring training. Scouts and executives who saw him at the Dec. 15 workout said Chapman has potential to be a No. 1 starter.

Few NL teams beyond the Reds and Marlins were linked to Chapman. The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals sent their general managers to the workout. The New York Mets were an intriguing possibility as well, fulfilling Chapman’s desire to play in a big city. Cincinnati, which could shed almost $20 million from its payroll after this year by declining options for Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo, stepped up at the end by offering only $2 million less than Jose Contreras received when he defected.

The increased interest coincided with Chapman firing Edwin Mejia, a fledgling agent who helped him establish residency in Andorra after he defected from the Cuban national team over the summer. His new agents, Randy and Alan Hendricks, are well-respected around baseball, and officials said they appreciated the transparency the Hendrickses applied to Chapman.

Because he spent his formative years in Cuba, Chapman was something of an unknown. His fastball was legendary, his slider dangerous and his changeup a potential plus pitch, but scouts had seen him a limited number of times – including during the World Baseball Classic last March – and were reluctant to engage in a blind bidding.

After the workout in Houston, many were convinced. The 6-foot-4 Chapman, not throwing at maximum effort, flashed good command of his breaking pitches in two short bullpen sessions. And his fastball led one front-office man to say, very simply, “It’s awesome.”

The Reds apparently agreed.
 
Sorry....I didn't check the hotstove thread prior to posting this.

Oh well...Good times for Reds fans!

I don't think there is any doubt they now trade Harang and/or (unfortunately) Arroyo....to get some of that salary back and hopefully find an everyday shortstop.

 
Sorry....I didn't check the hotstove thread prior to posting this.

Oh well...Good times for Reds fans!

I don't think there is any doubt they now trade Harang and/or (unfortunately) Arroyo....to get some of that salary back and hopefully find an everyday shortstop.
Chapman is probably a Sept. call up. They need innings eaten til then. Also, his contract this year is $1M. The only time his contract starts really effecting the ML roster is 2014, so there is no urgency to unload Arroyo or Harang. Granted, they still need a SS, but they don't have to move either of them for salary relief.
 
Awesome. Other than being a lefty, my first thought on seeing his picture was Bob Gibson. Here's hoping he can be that type of pitcher! :yawn:

 
Awesome. Other than being a lefty, my first thought on seeing his picture was Bob Gibson. Here's hoping he can be that type of pitcher! :lmao:
How so?I don't see it. As you mentioned, Chapman is a left with a longer stride than Gibson and without Gibson's distinctive follow through across his body.
 
Nats apparently made an offer of more than $20M, $5M more than they ended up giving Strausburg.

 
Reminds me (and a lot of people) of a young Randy Johnson :goodposting:
The ability to develop another pitch will determing whether he becomes a solid starter or a middling middle reliever. Huge Risk, Huge Reward for the Reds. Interested to track his progress.
 
Balco said:
Reminds me (and a lot of people) of a young Randy Johnson :confused:
The ability to develop another pitch will determing whether he becomes a solid starter or a middling middle reliever. Huge Risk, Huge Reward for the Reds. Interested to track his progress.
Yup and this is where Mario Soto comes in. The king of the changeup. He taught it to Cueto and Volquez and both of them have one of the Top 5 change ups in the game :thumbup:Also, he already has a plus plus breaking ball, so that would give him 3 plus plus pitches (provided he takes to the changeup).
 
CINCINNATI—Within just a few minutes of Cuban pitcher Aroldis Chapman's arrival in the United States, Reds manager Dusty Baker had already overused and mangled the 21-year-old's arm beyond recognition, team sources reported Sunday. Baker, who has been accused of overtaxing young pitchers' arms in the past, reportedly greeted Chapman with a bucket of 250 baseballs and told him to "hurl them" as fast as he could, later encouraging the fastballer to "go nuts" with his pitching style. "He didn't even let me stretch out first," Chapman told reporters through an interpreter. "And when I started to wince from the pain and soreness, he just gave me a thumbs up, winked, and told me to keep throwing." At press time, Chapman had already been to the hospital for an oblique strain, a torn rotator cuff, and his second Tommy John surgery of the week
 

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