Report: Aroldis Chapman expected to opt out of deal
The All-Star closer has two years and $30 million remaining on his current contract
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, Chapman is expected to explore his options on the market by exercising his opt-out clause with two years and $30 million guaranteed remaining on his current deal.
The Yankees could of course work toward an extension with the 31-year-old flamethrower, not unlike CC Sabathia in 2011, keeping Chapman in pinstripes for the foreseeable future while allowing him to re-negotiate his compensation.
"A player who is friendly with Aroldis Chapman predicts the Yankees' closer is 'one million percent' going to opt out of his contract at the end of the season," Rosenthal wrote Wednesday. "Even though the Yankees could make Chapman a qualifying offer, it stands to reason that he could get more than $30 million on the open market."
Despite his recent blown save against Travis d'Arnaud and the Rays, Chapman has pitched to a sterling 2.45 ERA with 53 strikeouts and 12 walks over 39 appearances this season, including 25 saves, tied for the AL lead entering play Wednesday.
The Yankees bullpen has once again been a major pillar of the first-place Bombers' success in 2019, ranking among the top-five in the AL in ERA (3.93), saves (32), strikeouts (400) and opponents' batting average (.242).
With other high-end relief options in the bullpen like Adam Ottavino, Zack Britton and Chad Green (along with the injured Dellin Betances, who will hit free agency at year's end), the Yankees will have to consider their best move forward regarding Chapman's future.
The 'Cuban Missile' has been a formidable force in his four seasons with the Bombers, and could simply be looking for an upgrade in salary versus an exit from the Bronx.
Aroldis Chapman said that any talk that he has decided to opt out of his #Yankees contract is "completely false." He said that he has not spoken to his agent about the topic, and will wait until after the season to do so.- Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) July 17, 2019