Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports has confirmed on Twitter that Aroldis Chapman has signed with the Cincinnati Reds for five years and $30 million. This comes as a bit of a shock, especially given the depth of the Reds rotation already.
While Edison Volquez is likely to miss the majority of the season, the team still has Aaron Harang, Bronson Arroyo and Johnny Cueto as it’s top three, along with Homer Bailey to help fill out the rotation. You have to wonder if the Reds, who obviously view him as a starting pitcher based on the contract they gave him, will have him open the season in Triple-A. You also have to wonder if they will be more open to trading someone like Harang or Arroyo in an attempt to free up some money in the budget.
Even if Chapman were to start the year in Triple-A, it’s only a matter of time before he sees time in the Major Leagues. I just don’t see the Reds making this big of an investment on a 21-year old pitcher and not expect him to make an impact in 2010. Said to throw upwards of 100 mph, Chapman has been compared to 2009 first overall pick Stephen Strasburg as one of the best arms not in the Major Leagues.
In an article on ESPN (click here to read), they claimed that during last year’s World Baseball Classic he was clocked as hitting 102, though in his audtion for team’s in December he reached just 96. Still, for a left-handed pitcher, that’s something special.
It’s tough to say how his live arm will translate to the Major League game, especially in a small park like Cincinnati. While he could be plagued by the long ball, I don’t think it would be a crippling mark, especially if people can’t make contact enough to get on base. Solo home runs just don’t have as much impact as two or three-run shots. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him struggle a bit, at times, especially in his rookie season, but with Volquez & Cueto, there’s a lot to like about the Reds future rotation.
From a fantasy perspective, he’s an excellent late round draft pick in all formats, especially if you have a deep enough bench to stash him if he were to start the season in the Minor Leagues. In keeper leagues/dynasty leagues, if he’s not owned already he needs to be grabbed.
Make sure to place your order for the Rotoprofessor 2010 Fantasy Baseball Draft Guide, selling for just $5, by clicking here.
Previous Fantasy Impacts of Recent Transactions:
- Hermida to Boston
- Teahen for Fields & Getz
- Iwamura to Pittsburgh
- Hardy for Gomez
- Shoppach to Tampa Bay
- Wagner to Atlanta
- Polanco, Scutaro, Fox & Zaun
- Granderson-Scherzer-Jackson Blockbuster
- Millwood, Harden, Wolf & More
- Figgins, Lowell & More
- Lackey to the Red Sox
- Matsui, Cameron & Pierre
- Halladay/Lee Blockbuster
- Javier Vazquez to the Yankees
- Beltre to Boston
- Cleveland signs Duncan & Kearns