aroldis chapman

In July, the Yankees traded Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs for a bundle of top prospects.

Just over three months later, they’ve gotten him back, and all it will cost them is $86 million over five years.

https://twitter.com/MarlyRiveraESPN/status/806719874294657025

This is pretty straight-forward: The Yankees have a lot of money and wanted a marquee closer to free up Dellin Betances for a middle-innings fireman-lite role. They’d seen Chapman’s dominance up close when he struck out 44 batters in 33 1/3 innings for them last season on the way to a 2.01 ERA.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman deserves some kind of award for his Chapman-related transactions over the past year. He got the closer in exchange for some middling prospects, dealt him for a package headlined by future star Gleyber Torres and then re-signed him at a reasonable rate.

Meanwhile, Chapman got to leave the Bronx, win a World Series real quick, then return with a fat paycheck. Not bad.

We’d be remiss not to mention Chapman’s suspension last year for a domestic violence incident. He served his 30-game suspension, so he’s entitled to play and earn his money, but a team that signs an abuser has to deal with what that says about its organizational values. If you want to judge the Yankees for disregarding domestic violence, that is a reasonable position. If you don’t mind that the Yankees signed Chapman, given that he has served his punishment, that’s also reasonable. But the Yankees do open themselves up to judgment.

The other team pursuing Chapman was the Miami Marlins, who will now bid against the Dodgers for the final big closer on the market, Kenley Jansen.

The stove is certainly hot.

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports, MLB.com, SI.com and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.