Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com hears from “one plugged-in agent” that Aroldis Chapman is seeking a $100 million contract.
For what it’s worth, the record for a reliever free agent contract was Jonathan Papelbon‘s four-year, $50 million deal with the Phillies in 2011. I appreciate that we just came off of a playoff season when big time relievers made a big difference, but as Chapman’s and Andrew Miller‘s obvious exhaustion in Game 7 of the World Series showed, you can only ride a closer so hard. You’re never going to tick one back up to Goose Gossage-level relief ace usage. Certainly not one that throws 102 m.p.h. anyway. Chapman is elite, but quantity matters when it comes to giving money to free agents, not just quality.
It’s also worth noting that Chapman is not the only game in town. Kenley Jansen and Mark Melancon are two other top-flight closers available as well. And that’s before you get to the fact that the Cubs’ front office has made comments suggesting that they may not be too hung up on bringing back Chapman anyway, taking one deep-pocketed bidder out of the mix.
It’s understandable that Chapman thinks highly enough of himself to be worthy of a paradigm-breaking contract. But $100 million certainly doesn’t seem realistic.
Update (9:04 PM EST): The game went into a rain delay with one out in the bottom of the fifth inning of a 2-2 tie, so the game isn’t official yet. Which means the Orioles aren’t yet the official record holders.
A third-inning solo home run by Austin Meadows off of Asher Wojciechowski on Thurday night marked the 259th home run Orioles pitching has allowed this season, setting a new major league record, per MASN’s Roch Kubatko. The previous record was held by the 2016 Reds at 258. Willie Adames hit No. 260, a game-tying solo shot in the fifth inning. The Orioles will have 34 more games to add on to their record after tonight.
The Yankees have famously accounted for 61 of the 260 home runs (23.5%) against Orioles pitchers this season. The Red Sox are next at 28 followed by the Twins and Blue Jays at 23 each.
David Hess has accounted for the most home runs on the O’s staff, yielding 28 dingers. Dylan Bundy is next at 25 homers allowed.
The Orioles are not the only team that will pass the 2016 Reds. The Mariners are on pace to allow 275 home runs. The Yankees, 266. Phillies, 262. Angels, 259. Pretty amazing.