The Brewers are in the market for a closing pitcher
Offseason moves are certainly coming hot and heavy right now for the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers sent their best offensive weapon, Hunter Renfroe, packing as they traded the outfielder to the Los Angeles Angels. The Brewers received three pitching prospects in return, but they still might need help at the closer position. An MLB insider recently suggests the Brewers could haul a controversial All-MLB closer. Former MLB second baseman, Billy Ripken, has a potential idea for the Brewers. He spoke on the MLB Network about a potential closer the Brewers could bring in. Ripken said he thinks the Brewers could take a chance on Aroldis Chapman.
Ripken acknowledged Aroldis Chapman brings “baggage” to the next team he pitches for. However, he said the Brewers might not care about team chemistry.
“Are the Brew Crew necessarily 100 percent worried about chemistry because they traded away a closer when they were in first place,” Billy Ripken asked. “And then they went straight down. And I think that disrupted a little bit of chemistry. Could this left-handed guy replace [Josh] Hader when they had him? And is it worth a one-year take on Aroldis Chapman to go to Milwaukee because I think they have some capable pieces in the bullpen?”
Why Aroldis Chapman is controversial
No one doubts Aroldis Chapman can pitch. He’s a seven-time All-Star pitcher and made the second-team All-MLB team in 2019. However, Chapman has a checkered history. The MLB suspended him for 30 days in 2016, connected to an investigation of domestic violence where he was alleged to have choked his girlfriend and fired eight gunshots. Chapman has denied the allegations, and prosecutors declined to prosecute Chapman, citing insufficient evidence.
In the clubhouse, Chapman leaves much desired as a teammate. Chapman was left off the New York Yankees ALDS roster after missing a mandatory workout. Aroldis Chapman left Yankees’ general manager, Brian Cashman, unimpressed after missing the workout.
“When you add everything up, it’s not surprising,” Cashman said. “There’s some questions about whether he’s all-in or not for a little while. He’s maintained verbally that he’s in, but at times actions don’t match those words. So when he didn’t show on Friday, obviously at first there were a lot of people upset and caught off guard.”
Chapman probably isn’t the guy the Brewers need in their clubhouse. Brewers fans aren’t going to like contemplating his past if he joins the team. The Brewers should avoid taking a chance on Aroldis Chapman at this juncture. Replacing Hader with Chapman consequently won’t sit well in Milwaukee.