The Aroldis Chapman experiment is officially over. The fireball pitcher will be moved back into the bullpen, becoming the Cincinnati Reds closer once again. The Reds experimented this Spring Training to see if Chapman could fill a starting role with the Reds. The left hander that hits triple digits on radar guns struggled this spring as a starting pitcher and now will assume the role that he told reporters he prefers.
Paul Daugherty of Cincinnati.com reports that the Reds will announce the move later today.
Daugherty writes that he does not agree with the decision and believes that Chapman should be in the starting rotation. He points to the fact that the Reds already invested heavily in the bullpen and that Chapman will be arbitration eligible this coming offseason. He also points to the fact that the Reds will now have to find another starter for their rotation.
Chapman told reporters last week that he wanted to return to the bullpen and be the Reds closer after a rough outing as a starter. Seemingly, Reds manager Dusty Baker agreed with the move. This past offseason, the Reds invested $21 million in Jonathan Braxton to become the team’s closer.
Chapman recorded 38 saves for Cincinnati last season in 71.1 innings pitched while recording a 1.51 ERA and a 5-5 overall record.