Getting to know Aroldis Chapman


Sheesh, didn’t think the news could be slow after three straight wins over the Red Sox, but it is. Luckily Jorge Arangure Jr. of ESPN penned a piece on Cuban defectee Aroldis Chapman, who literally walked out the front door of a Netherlands hotel in July while in town for a tournament. All the attention gets paid to Chapman’s triple digit fastball, but there’s more to the man who left his family and a child behind to pursue his dream. Make sure you check it out.

Categories : Asides


  1. kevin says:

    He seems like a good kid. I hope we really try hard to get this kid a lefty that can dial it up to 100 would a sick addition to our staff for the future.

  2. Mr.Jigginz says:

    ESPN’s “Inside the Lines” showed this interview this morning.Good stuff.

  3. Mr.Jigginz says:

    Make that”outside the lines”…

  4. JobaWockeeZ says:

    Didn’t he lie about his age and is like 23 instead of 21?

    • That was a false report by the NY Times. They stated his real age as 26, but later retracted. Cubans who compete internationally have little reason to lie about their ages. I don’t think the Cuban government is interested in making their best player more desirable to MLB teams.

  5. Mike Pop says:

    Anyone have a guesstimate on how much time he might need in the minors, if any at all?

  6. Jake H says:

    I had asked Jorge if he looked 21. He sure does. The bidding on this kid could get crazy.

  7. jsbrendog says:

    wow. that’s a pretty serious dream to ditch out on wife and kids.

    will there be any government backlash in cuba on them for his defection?

  8. Adam says:

    When do all of the shenanigans for him start?

  9. Januz says:

    This guy will command a huge contract, and it will be interesting to see who signs him. The team that should? The Mets. They need someone to generate interst in that team, because otherwise they will be drawing flies to Citi Field. I really would prefer signing John Lackey (And taking him away from the Angels).

  10. The Artist says:

    Mike, if you want some news check out the Boston media. They’ve never been busier. Much of it relates to the Yanks, on the heels of the sweep.

  11. G says:

    i told ya yesterday alrodlos chapman was gonna be on and da so called artist didn’t even reply

  12. Accent Shallow says:

    Definitely going to be interesting to follow this kid’s path to the majors. I often wonder as to the quality of the talent in Cuba.

    • KG Sturnz0r - Camilo Gerardo says:

      I don’t think Chapman’s skillset is a good predictor of the generalities of cubano tiradores

  13. No Halladay says:

    The Yanks will take a good look, but they are not into overpaying for unproven talent. See Dice K situation, maybe it’s best to let another team overpay for him and then let’s see what happens. Throwing at 100MPH is a tough thing to live up to, and might result in some arm problems. Control issues tells me the kid’s trying to throw too hard to hit that 100 mark. Dangerous for a 21 year old. Caution advised.

    • Tony says:

      Didn’t the Yankees offer like 40 million for Matsuzaka, and then give Igawa 30 million in response?

      • John Duci says:

        They may have offered 40 mill but definetly never payed it.

        • Tony says:

          But… they would have. And they DID pay Igawa.”They’re not into paying unproven talent” just isn’t backed up by the facts.

          • TheLastClown says:

            For one thing, Igawa pitched 8 highly successful years in NPB.

            He had a career 2.97 K/BB, led the league in Ks three times, and had 5 seasons of 190+IP

            That’s not “unproven talent.” That’s talent that has definitely been proven, albeit in a different league, and there were certainly translation issues.

            88-91 4 seam riding up in the zone is not going to strike out MLB hitters, and so Igawa was left with nothing.

            Another point, they didn’t pay Igawa all that money. He got a 5/20 deal, and the Hanshin Tigers got $26M to POST.

            There will be no such posting fee or process with Chapman, just good old fashioned courtship & negotiating.

            *Plus if his stuff is even mid-90′s with good secondary pitches, it’s eminently more translatable than Igawa*

      • Bob Stone says:

        It was actually closer to $30 million. They weren’t even the second highest bidder. I think the Mets were second bidder.

    • Drew says:

      “Control issues tells me the kid’s trying to throw too hard.”

      Or, you know, the dude is 21 years old and as raw as can be.

  14. John Duci says:

    CC, Burnett, Chapman, Joba, Hughes = Dynasty

    • I’m just pumped for CC/A.J./Joba/Phil/Whomever next season.

      • John Duci says:


        • But, yeah, I figure they’ll make a big run at Chapman. He’s younger than Dice-K and Contreras and even if he is a little raw, it can be worked out in the minors. If they took a chance on Brackman’s rawness, I figure they’ll take a shot at Aroldis.

          As for next year, I figure that fifth spot will be an open competition in camp between IPK, Z-Mac, Nova, and many others.

      • TheLastClown says:

        I’d love if IPK could step up & be that 5th guy until Wang returns.

        Chapman would obviously be a showstopper of a signing, but maybe they want to hold off on that big Cuban contract, piece a 5th starter together for 10/11, and go after the King Fish then.

        Whatever it happens to be, I’ve got buckets of faith is Cash & Co.

  15. ClayBuchholzLovesLaptops says:

    Who was the last Cuban defectee who lived up to the hype? Does anybody remember Maels Rodriguez, the last Cuban pitcher to throw in triple-digits?

    He was also hyped like crazy as the next superstar pitcher and boy, did that work out!

    I don’t care about this guy until he shows he can get minor leaugers out constantly.

  16. Bob Stone says:

    Every time a player is touted as having a 100mph fastball, I temper my excitement with the thought that Farnsworth had 100mph velocity too. It didn’t make him a great pitcher. Control, movement, location, durability and many other factors are important.

    • Drew says:

      Did you see him in the WBC?
      Dude’s got some insane stuff.

      • Bob Stone says:

        No – I didn’t see that. Everyone says he’s a talent. I’m sure there’s something to it. I’m just skeptical until I see a prospect get out Major Leaguers in MLB games, even if they do have 100mph velocity.

  17. J Squared says:

    Atleast 48.5 million comes off the books without resigning anyone, and if Austin Jackson can fill the void in the Outfield, we will definitely have a lot of money to spend on a one year 5th starter and Chapman. (Hopefully both only cost 15 million combined)

  18. Grandma Karkan says:

    Great physique…Lot of projection still left in that body.

  19. KG Sturnz0r - Camilo Gerardo says:

    could he be working on getting residency, while achieving a visa and pitching in the indy leagues?
    His agent/coach would have to be pretty sure he is ready, though…

  20. Joba or Hughes-To-the-pen says:

    This kid can be a good project.Hopefully unlike Hughes and Joba maybe this kid can throw at least 95 or 96 as a starter and casn be a true ace.

  21. AlexNYC says:

    My reply button doesn’t work so a massive Oaktag for Joba or Hughes to the pen guy or just TouchStoneTerriost or terrorist w/e he spells that. BTW I heard he was Bo’s younger brother.

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