Cuban Missile Crisis: Mixed messages still about Aroldis Chapman's role in the rotation

GOODYEAR, Ariz. - The Cuban Missile Crisis at Spring Training continues: To make Aroldis Chapman a starter or not?

Cincinnati Reds skipper Dusty Baker said over the weekend in Goodyear, Arizona it's an "organizational decision."

"We haven't made up our minds yet," Baker said of the decision to move Chapman from the closer role (in which he was among the best in baseball in 2012) to a starter role (even though the Reds re-signed last year's fifth starter in Mike Leake).

"It's not just my decision, so we just have to let it play," Baker continued.

But Chapman seems to think it's a done deal, saying through an interpreter that he had been approached right after the 2012 season ended and was told he was going back to being a starter.

What Reds fans hope doesn't happen is if the Reds indecisively give Chapman a few innings here and a few innings there until April when they throw him into a full-on starting position, we might see a 'Bay of Pigs' of sorts, except think of Chapman as the invading force.

And he may not be ready just yet to be a starter, despite the Reds' already stellar bullpen and long-term signing of potential-closer Jonathan Broxton that could still be great in Chapman's absence. Read on for more at  www.wcpo.com/dpp/sports/baseball/reds/column-aroldis-chapman-is-not-ready-to-be-a-starter .

 

9 On Your Side's sports director John Popovich contributed to this report and will continue to post updates from Goodyear, Arizona all week.

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