KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Royals signed veteran reliever Aroldis Chapman to a $3.75 million, one-year contract Friday, a week after agreeing to terms with the seven-time All-Star, who is coming off a lackluster season with the New York Yankees.
Chapman was once known for consistently throwing 100 mph fastballs past woebegone hitters. But the left-hander, who will be 35 on opening day, was 4-4 with a 4.46 ERA in his final season with the Yankees, who ultimately left him off their AL Division Series roster when his actions raised questions about his dedication to the team.
Chapman had spent time on the injured list with Achilles tendinitis in May, then lost the closer job to Clay Holmes. He was on the IL again in August for a leg infection following a tattoo, then missed a mandatory team workout for the playoffs.
The Royals are gambling that he can help what was one of baseball's worst bullpens last season. The relievers had a 4.66 ERA, fourth-worst in the majors, and the team had done little to upgrade this offseason until recently trading away injury-prone shortstop Adalberto Mondesi and outfielder Michael A. Taylor for a trio of pitching prospects.
Chapman was an All-Star as recently as two years ago. He is 44-35 with a 2.48 ERA and 315 saves in 13 seasons.
AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports