The Reds plan to stretch Aroldis Chapman out as a starting pitcher during winter ball in Puerto Rico, but he’s making a few tune-up appearances in the prospect-rich Arizona Fall League first.
According to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com, the hard-throwing left-hander tossed a scoreless inning of relief in his first appearance this afternoon. He threw eight out of 16 pitches for strikes while fanning one and walking one. Keith Law of ESPN.com notes that he touched 101 mph on his fastball.
Chapman is scheduled to pitch again Thursday and next Monday before leaving for winter ball. Barring a change of plans, he is expected to get a look as a starting pitcher during spring training.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Arizona Diamondbacks have signed pitchers Kris Medlen and Antonio Bastardo to minor-league deals. Medlen will make $1.1 million if he breaks camp with the Snakes. Bastardo will earn at $1.5 million if he makes the team.
Medlen hasn’t pitched in the bigs since 2016 and hasn’t pitched effectively in the bigs since 2013 due to multiple Tommy John surgeries and, more recently, shoulder ailments. Last year he put up a 4.95 ERA in 20 games in the Braves’ minor league system. If he’s healthy he could be a depth guy for the Dbacks in the event one of their big league starters go down.
Bastardo pitched in nine games, ineffectively, for the Pirates before being released last season. He didn’t catch on anywhere else after that so, hey, I guess he’s fresh?