Aroldis Chapman reportedly expected to opt out of contract
The MLB free agent market has not been kind to many players over the past few years, but Aroldis Chapman is apparently confident he can land another massive contract next winter.
Chapman signed a five-year, $86 million deal with the New York Yankees prior to the 2017 season, but it contains player options of $15 million per season for the last two years. One player who is friends with the left-hander told Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic that Chapman is “one million percent” going to become a free agent after the season.
That would mean leaving $30 million on the table, which may be somewhat risky considering Chapman will turn 32 in February. However, as Rosenthal notes, the Yankees closer saw Craig Kimbrel sign a three-year, $43 million contract with the Chicago Cubs last month after sitting out a significant portion of the season. Chapman should be able to get at least that, which would be more guaranteed money than the $30 million left on his current contract.
Chapman is having another solid season with the Yankees, as he has saved 25 games in 29 opportunities and has an ERA of 2.45. He has struck out 53 batters in 36 2/3 innings. Some opponents seem to think he has lost the intimidation factor, but Chapman remains one of the better relievers in baseball.