Hendricks, API reach settlement regarding Chapman

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Thumbnail image for Aroldis Chapman in reds uni.jpgA league source tells SI.com that a settlement has been reached between Hendricks Sports Management and Athletes Premier International (API) in regards to Cuban left-hander Aroldis Chapman.

Edwin Mejia, the president of API, filed a suit against Hendricks Sports Management in Massachusetts Superior Court last December after Chapman jumped ship, claiming that the Hendricks’ brothers provided Chapman “with numerous improper enticements to induce and terminate his contract and relationship with Athletes Premier and Mejia.”

Chapman inked a five-year, $30 million contract with the Reds in January after joining with more-established Hendricks’ brothers. We can only speculate that Mejia requested millions in damages.

While the battle with Mejia and API appears to be over, Rodney Fernandez, a former employee of Hendricks Sports Management, is still under investigation to determine whether he played a part in more than $300,000 missing from the bank account of Angels first baseman Kendry Morales. Fernandez, who played a significant part in bringing Morales and Chapman to Hendricks Sports Management, told Jorge Arangure Jr. of ESPN.com that whatever money he took from Morales’ account was done with the approval of co-founders Alan and Randy Hendricks. Morales left Hendricks Sports Management for Scott Boras last month upon learning about the missing cash.

Report: Mariners’ Taijuan Walker drawing “strong” trade interest

SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 08:  Starting pitcher Taijuan Walker #44 of the Seattle Mariners looks on from the dugout after completing eight innings against the Cleveland Indians at Safeco Field on June 8, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY reports that the Mariners have received “strong” trade interest for starter Taijuan Walker. The right-hander is currently on the mend from tendinitis in his right foot.  He’ll throw a bullpen on Friday at Wrigley Field with scouts in attendance.

Walker, 23, has a 3.66 ERA with an 80/18 K/BB ratio in 86 innings this season. It’s his first bit of sustained success at the major league level. What’s arguably just as intriguing is the fact that Walker will be under team control through 2020.

The Mariners have been hovering around .500 for the last month and entered Thursday six games behind the first-place Rangers in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot, behind three other teams as well as the two Wild Card leaders. It’s enough uncertainty which could push the Mariners to sell.

Report: Mets, Brewers continue discussing Jonathan Lucroy

PITTSBURGH, PA - JULY 20:  Jonathan Lucroy #20 of the Milwaukee Brewers walks back to the dugout in the eighth inning during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on July 20, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
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On Monday, we learned that the Mets offered to swap catchers with the Brewers, Travis d'Arnaud for Jonathan Lucroy. The Brewers, as expected, turned that down. The two still continue to discuss a trade involving Lucroy, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports.

The Mets certainly could use some help at catcher. The club has gotten an aggregate .608 OPS from their backstops, the fourth-lowest mark in baseball, ahead of only the Pirates, Rays, and Indians. However, the Mets seem to be behind other teams — including a “mystery” team — in the bidding, according to Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball.

Lucroy, who took Thursday off, is batting .300/.361/.486 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI in 371 plate appearances for the Brewers this season. He can become a free agent after the season if his controlling club opts against picking up his $5.25 million option for the 2017 season.