Law’s profile on Aroldis Chapman
From Keith Law’s FA rankings, we find Aroldis Chapman, who was number 5 on Law’s list.
Chapman is the wild card of the free-agent market, as his track record is largely unknown, he has barely thrown for clubs since defecting and he is represented by agents who haven’t handled a free agent of this magnitude before. When Chapman is on, he’ll show No. 1 starter stuff, with a fastball in the mid-90s (and yes, as high as 101 mph) with good tail and a mid-80s slider that will show plus with legitimate tilt, although the latter pitch isn’t consistent. He does have a soft changeup, but he lacks feel for it and pushes it out of his hand rather than selling it with good arm speed. His command isn’t good, and he’s more thrower than pitcher, with a very loose arm that makes the velocity come out easily. Since defecting, he has worked on his body, and scouts who’ve seen him recently say he’s stronger and in better overall shape. He might be a No. 1 starter; he might be an ace closer; he might be a mountain of frustration. Is that worth $60 million? Or the fourth- or fifth-biggest contract of the offseason? Not to me, but he’s worth some eight-figure amount because of the almost limitless upside.
Can the Yankees afford to sign on a minor league player for more than $40 or $50 dollars? Plus, if Chapman commands that much, is he even worth it given his raw tools (they need to be refined)? The Yankees have some very real holes to fill in 2010, therefore, saved dollars can go a long way.
Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images