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Cubs acquire Aroldis Chapman from Yankees

Yanks get bigger return than Reds did
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Posted at 12:28 PM, Jul 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-26 08:46:30-04

NEW YORK – It looks like Aroldis Chapman is coming back to the NL Central to haunt the Reds.

When the Chicago Cubs closed a four-for-one deal with the New York Yankees to obtain the former Reds fireballer on Monday, the Yanks got a bigger return than the Reds did when they traded him to NY in December.

The Cubs wouldn't budge on giving up young catcher/OF Kyle Schwarber, the Middletown native who suffered  a season-ending injury in April. But the Cubs, committed to win their first World Series in 108 years, were willing to send their top prospect and three others to the Yankees, which makes the Reds look like chumps for not waiting for the trade deadline to move him.

The deal includes Gleyber Torres, the Cubs' highly-rated shortstop prospect, and right-fielder Billy McKinney, their fifth-best prospect, along with former Yankees pitcher Adam Warren (3-2, 5.91 ERA) and one other player, reportedly minor league center fielder Rashad Crawford. The deal was first reported by MLB Insider Jon Heyman.

The Reds sent Chapman to the Yankees for right-handers Rookie Davis and Caleb Cotham and infielders Eric Jagielo and Tony Renda on Dec. 28. Davis is 8-3 with a 2.68 ERA at Class AA Pensacola. Cotham is 0-3 with a 7.40 ERA with the Reds. Neither is regarded in Torres' class.

The Reds were backed into a corner with Chapman, who was going into his free-agency year. Not only were they dumping salaries in the midst of their "rebuild," they lost bargaining power when MLB suspended Chapman for the first 30 games of 2016 for violating its domestic violence policy. Chapman was accused of choking his 22-year-old girlfriend during an argument at his Florida home and firing eight shots in the air afterward.

Now it's the Yankees who appear to be in rebuild.

Though it's a steep price to pay for possibly just three months of Chapman's services, the closer gives the first-place Cubs just what they needed to cover their Achilles heel and take them to the World Series.

The lefty hasn't been quite as dominating with the Yankees as he was with the Reds a year ago, but tell that to American League  hitters. Chapman has hit 105 mph in several games this month. He has 44 strikeouts in 31 1/3 innings (12.6 per nine innings), a 2.01 ERA, 3-0 record and 20 saves (vs. one blown save).

Chapman ended his six-year stint with the Reds in 2015 with 116 strikeouts in 66 1/3 innings (15.7 per nine innings), a 1.63 ERA, 4-4 record  and 33 saves in 36 opportunities.

SEE Chapman's career stats.

Chapman and the Cubs released statements about his domestic violence incident.

Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts said he spoke with Chapman about it.  "I shared with him the high expectations we set for our players and staff both on and off the field," Ricketts said.  "Aroldis indicated he is comfortable with meeting those expectations."

Chapman expressed regret and said he would like to put it behind him

"I regret I did not exercise better judgment and for that I am truly sorry," Chapman said. "Looking back, I feel I have learned from this matter and have grown as a person. My girlfriend and I have worked hard to strengthen our relationship, to raise our daughter together, and would appreciate the opportunity to move forward without revisiting an event we consider part of our past. Out of respect for my family, I will not comment any further on this matter.

“I cannot wait to take the mound at Wrigley Field and look forward to helping my teammates deliver a championship to Chicago.”