With Mark Melancon signing a four-year contract with the San Francisco Giants, Aroldis Chapman and Kenley Jansen are left standing as the top closers on the open market. Melancon’s deal is worth a reported $62 million, which is a record for a relief pitcher.
That will shortly be exceeded by Chapman and Jansen, with each largely expected to sign in the neighborhood of $80-plus million. Chapman openly stated he’s seeking a six-year contract, and implied he believes the value should be $100 million.
Although clubs have historically shied away from signing relievers to such a contract, Chapman’s and Jansen’s talent coupled with multiple teams looking to bolster their bullpen, makes for the possibility of bidding wars.
According to Bryan Hoch of MLB.com, the New York Yankees made contract offers to Chapman and Jansen:
The Yankees have made contract offers to both Aroldis Chapman and Kenley Jansen.
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) December 6, 2016
While the Yankees have been linked to Jansen, their preference is said to be Chapman. New York acquired the left-hander last December after the Cincinnati Reds’ trade with the Dodgers came undone amid the report surfacing of Chapman’s involvement in an alleged domestic violence incident.
Chapman went 3-0 with 20 saves, a 2.01 ERA, 1.93 FIP and 0.89 WHIP in 31 games with the Yankees. That came after he missed the start of the season due to a 30-game suspension. After being traded to the Chicago Cubs, Chapman converted 16 saves with a 1.01 ERA.
The 28-year-old said in November he would love to re-join the Yankees.