Cubs Closer Aroldis Chapman
If the Washington Nationals fail to re-sign Mark Melancon and Chapman is still available, he is going to be a closer that the Nats will probably try to sign to sure up the ninth inning. Since Chapman was traded during the season, the Nats would not have to give up their first round draft pick if they signed him.
In 59 games with the Cubs and Yankees this season, Chapman had 36 saves in 39 chances. He began his season in May after serving a 30-game domestic violence suspension.
Chapman did blow three saves in the regular season and has blown two six-out saves this postseason, but he is still one of the best closers in the game. The Washington Nationals have tried to acquire him in the past and Chapman does have a connection with Dusty Baker from his time with the Reds.
This season, the Washington Nationals had one of the best bullpens in the National League, but they needed an elite closer before they acquired Melancon at the trade deadline. The question will be if the Nats fail to re-sign Melancon, will they give Chapman a record contract that it will take to get a deal done?
Out of the five free agents that I am going to profile in this piece, I think Chapman has the best chance of wearing a curly W uniform next season. It’s hard to ignore the connection that Baker has with Chapman and they are going to need an elite closer if they want to be a serious contender for the World Series next season.