A night after New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman threw the five fastest pitches recorded to date by Statcast™, including one that clocked in at 105.1 mph, Chapman is again at the forefront of trade rumors. This time, it is being reported that the Yankees are aggressively seeking to trade him.
ESPN’s Buster Olney reported on Monday that New York is going “full bore” in shaping possible deals for the likes of Chapman. Chapman, 28, has a 2.22 ERA with 40 strikeouts and eight walks in 28.1 innings this season for the Yanks.
Last night’s performance may have added even more value to Chapman’s trade stock:
“I look [at the scoreboard] every time he throws a pitch,” Yankees catcher Brian McCann said. “I look every time to see how hard it was. It’s incredible what he can do on the mound. You just hope you catch it right. If you catch it right, you’re fine. If you don’t, you’re in trouble.”
“I noticed,” Chapman said through an interpreter. “I took a peek at the board and I saw that it was 105, yeah. … Actually, I noticed their reaction when I threw the ball, so because of that cheering, that’s when I looked back and I noticed. It was nice.”
“I duck down one step in the dugout when he’s pitching,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “Some of our hard throwers, you get a little bit nervous over there. But you watch him, and his arm is so quick. I can’t really say I’ve ever seen an arm that quick, and it’s impressive.”
It seems that one team that is watching Chapman closely, and continuously tied to Chapman in trade rumors, is the Chicago Cubs.
Talks may be tough for Chicago as the Yankeers reportedly interested in Kyle Schwarber, who is out for the season after suffering a torn ACL and LCL in his left knee back in April.
Reports have circulated of late that the Cubs are refusing to include Schwarber in any deal, but they may have to bend on that stance is they wish to get either Andrew Miller of Aroldis Chapman from the Bronx.