The Yankees have traded closer Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs for minor leaguers Gleyber Torres, Billy McKinney, Rashad Crawford and relief pitcher Adam Warren, both teams announced on Monday.
Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball first reported the trade.
Chapman, 28, was one of the biggest names rumored to be on the trading block ahead of Major League Baseball’s Aug. 1 trade deadline. The Yankees had reportedly been “aggressive” in shopping Chapman, with the Nationals, Giants, Dodgers and Cubs all linked to him.
According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Yankees tried to extend Chapman before the trade, but failed, learning the lefthander wishes to test the free-agent market after the season. He does not currently have an agreement in place to sign an extension with Chicago.
Warren will join the Yankees in Houston, with McKinney headed to Double A and Torres and Crawford going to High A Tampa.
In 31 1/3 innings this season, Chapman has converted 20 of 21 save opportunities, posting a 2.01 ERA with 44 strikeouts. He also tied his own record for the fastest pitch in major league history at 105.1 mph. Chapman—who New York acquired in December from the Reds in exchange for minor leaguers Rookie Davis, Eric Jagielo, Tony Renda and Caleb Cotham—missed the first 30 games of the season as a result of a suspension for a domestic violence incident that took place in the off-season in Florida, in which he was accused of choking his girlfriend and firing a gun into a wall. No criminal charges were filed.
In a statement, Chapman apologized for “exercising better judgment” during the event.
Torres, a 19-year-old shortstop from Venezuela, ranks as the Cubs’ top prospect, according to Baseball America. He was No. 27 on their midseason Top 100. Warren heads back to New York after being dealt to Chicago for second baseman Starlin Castro over the off-season. The 28-year-old righthander was optioned to Triple A last week after posting a 5.91 ERA in 35 innings as a reliever. McKinney is a 21-year-old outfielder and former first-round pick of the Athletics, who dealt him to Chicago for Jeff Samardzija in 2014. Crawford, a 22-year-old outfielder, was the Cubs' 11th-round pick in 2012.
Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported Saturday that the Yankees told clubs that they were “close” to trading Chapman but intended to keep setup man Andrew Miller, another highly sought after relief pitcher.
– Kenny Ducey