NASHVILLE — Let’s not plead ignorance. Many facts have been laid bare — for us and for the Dodgers — about Cincinnati Reds pitcher Aroldis Chapman‘s role in a domestic dispute in October.
In case you missed it: Yahoo! Sports reported last night that Chapman fired eight gunshots in his garage in October after arguing with his girlfriend, who alleges that Chapman placed her in a chokehold. MLB is investigating the facts to determine if they fall under the league’s domestic violence policy. Click on the links. There are a lot of facts there.
Since many of you have chimed in on social media about all of this, here’s your chance to vote.
The question isn’t whether or not the Dodgers should trade for Chapman. That question inherently depends on what Cincinnati is willing to offer in return — even if the price is a sack of baseballs at this point, we can’t say for sure. The question is, should the Dodgers be even discussing the terms of a Chapman trade with Reds, knowing what we all know?
Still, the issue of whether the Dodgers would trade for a pitcher knowing he allegedly choked a woman and fired off a gun in his home is a touchy one. President of baseball operations Andrew Friedman declined to say when he learned of the allegations against Chapman, which were first reported by Yahoo.com Monday night. Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig is currently under investigation for an incident that might fall under the league’s domestic violence policy, too.
Tuesday at the Winter Meetings, MLB chief baseball officer Joe Torre said that the league learned of the incident around the same time the public became aware Monday night.
“We did not get that information until late yesterday,” Torre said. “That’s the first we heard about it. And obviously it happened, you know, much earlier than that. So it takes time to gather information, and the same thing with the José Reyes (incident, which is also being investigated by MLB). We want to make sure we have all the information and then the decision will be made. The only timetable is when we feel we’ve got as much information as we can get.”
Update (7:30 p.m.): An MLB investigation into allegations of domestic violence against Chapman have put the trade proposal on hold. Yahoo! Sports was first to report the news. Read more here.
Chapman, baseball’s hardest thrower, has averaged 36 saves a season each of the last four years for some struggling Reds teams. He has a 2.17 ERA, 146 saves and a whopping 546 strikeouts in 319 innings pitched in his career.
In Chapman and Kenley Jansen, the Dodgers would have arguably the best right-handed and left-handed closers in the National League. The question of how to use the two, both of whom are in their final years of salary arbitration, would present an enviable problem for any team.
Update (12 p.m.): Based on what I’ve heard from baseball sources today, I don’t believe either Grant Holmes or Jose De Leon will be part of the package going to Cincinnati. The trade has yet to be completed so the names still have time to change, but that would affirm a tweet earlier today by David Vassegh of KLAC (570-AM) that no Dodgers pitching prospects are involved in the deal. That would also rule out Julio Urias, the Dodgers’ top prospect.
If the Reds are interested in position players and the Dodgers don’t include any players on the 40-man roster, the names to watch include Single-A first baseman Cody Bellinger or outfielder Alex Verdugo, or Double-A catcher Kyle Farmer.
If other teams become involved the trade, the names are only more likely to change. That’s entirely possible:
Sources saying no deal done yet for #reds and #dodgers on Chapman. I'm hearing multiple teams could be involved.