The Yankees are “going full bore in shaping possible deals” with other clubs regarding Aroldis Chapman, reports ESPN’s Buster Olney (via Twitter). According to executives to whom Olney has spoken, the Nationals, Rangers and Indians are a few of the involved parties at this time.
Reports out of New York and recent quotes from president Randy Levine to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports have indicated that the Yankees have yet to determine whether they’ll sell off veteran pieces at the deadline, but there’s long been speculation that Chapman, a free agent at season’s end, could be moved even if the team hangs onto more controllable pieces like Andrew Miller and Dellin Betances.
All three clubs listed by Olney have been linked relief help over the past couple of weeks, with left-handed relief help in particular said on many occasions recently to be Cleveland’s top priority of late. The Rangers are known to be seeking rotation help, but they also currently sport the second-worst bullpen ERA of any club in baseball, at 5.08. The Nationals, meanwhile, have been said to be in pursuit of a top-tier bullpen arm dating back to last summer’s trade deadline and have been linked to Chapman on more than one occasion in the past. Earlier today, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported that Chapman was the Nationals’ “most likely” target on the trade market.
Yahoo’s Jeff Passan wrote earlier this week that the Yankees “are going to trade” Chapman prior to the Aug. 1 non-waiver trade deadline, though a full roster tear-down is unlikely. There’s been some word that the Yankees are internally discussing the possibility of trying to extend Chapman, though the reports from Passan and now Olney would certainly seem to indicate that a long-term pact isn’t an overly likely possibility.
The 28-year-old Chapman, who is owed about $4.64MM of his $11.325MM salary through season’s end, has pitched to a 2.22 ERA with 12.7 K/9 and a much improved 2.5 BB/9 rate since returning from a 30-game suspension under Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy earlier this season.