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RiverRat13
10-11-2010, 11:54 AM
I think we've learned that it takes "plus" arms to make a run in the postseason. And no pitcher on the Reds staff is more likely than Aroldis Chapman to be that ace in 2011. However, the Reds do have to protect Chapman's arm and take into consideration that he threw around 110 innings in 2009. If you are a believer in the Verducci effect or at least somewhat agree with the concept, then the Reds probably shouldn't allow Chapman to start the entire season, especially when he is a likely starter if the Reds make the playoffs. But at the same time, you don't want to have to shut him down like Leake was forced to do this season. You definitely want Aroldis starting in the second half of the season and in the playoffs.

So my proposal may be a little out-of-the box, but I'd like to see the Reds handle Chapman similarly to the way they did in '10... except in reverse order in '11. I would start him in the pen as my set-up man for the first two months of the season. Then I would send him to Louisville during June to build his arm back up in order to start the rest of the season. Then bring him back up after the All-Star break. My plan should keep his total innings under 150, even if the Reds make a nice playoff run. It would also give the Reds time to sort out the logjam of starters and position themselves to have the best five guys in the rotation for the second half of the season.

What would you do with Chapman in '11?

gmt
10-11-2010, 01:26 PM
I would have him start from the beginning of the season either in AAA or the majors. I think it would be more difficult to try to extend him after the season starts than to begin that way. Plus sticking him in the bullpen for an inning here, a couple there, is not a good way to get him into a routine. He needs to work on pacing and maybe adding another pitch. Just because you can throw 105 MPH, does not mean you will be successful. Eventually major league hitters will catch up to that pitch. The slider is nice, just not used enough yet. In a starter's role, he will need to have a pace to allow him to pitch 6 or more innings. You might not see that 105 MPH heater that often if he wants to last more than 3 innings. If he can develop a decent change-up and some sort of curve, he will be ready. He needs to be able to rely on something else in addition to his fastball that will put less stress on his arm and allow him to throw 100 pitches in a game.

SidneySlicker
10-11-2010, 02:02 PM
I've said it before and I'll say it again. Chapman needs a 3rd pitch before he deserves to have any consideration as a starter. We've already seen that mlb hitters can time up a 100mph pitch. That becomes easier to do when they face him 3 and 4 times a game. He also needs to prove he can throw strikes consistently for 6 or 7 innings. I hope he can continue to make strides as a starter, but it's not gonna happen all at one time.

roby
10-11-2010, 02:26 PM
This may not be a popular idea, but I leave Chapman in the bullpen for the entire 2011 season. I do not yo-yo him back and forth from the minors. (He's seen MLB and is adjusting. Leave that alone.) A full season in the pen will allow him to work on a third pitch if you decide to start him in '12. I would see how things shake out in the rotation...i.e. how Leake, Wood and Bailey do and decide from there what to do with Chapman at the end of the season. He is extrememly valuable out of the pen...and you do not have quite as big of a risk when it comes to hurting his arm.

arkimadee
10-11-2010, 02:29 PM
Last night I saw Cole Hamels rip a 103mph fastball into deep center field. If Cole Hamels can catch up to it in one at-bat, then lineups will tag him the rest of the game after seeing him once. I guess what I'm trying to say is that he needs to develop and use his slider some more and get a third pitch before we can consider him a top of the rotation guy.

roby
10-11-2010, 02:32 PM
Last night I saw Cole Hamels rip a 103mph fastball into deep center field. If Cole Hamels can catch up to it in one at-bat, then lineups will tag him the rest of the game after seeing him once. I guess what I'm trying to say is that he needs to develop and use his slider some more and get a third pitch before we can consider him a top of the rotation guy.

Agreed...but I do love his potential!

TheBigLebowski
10-11-2010, 02:33 PM
We treated him with kid gloves this season, which is what we should have done. But this franchise simply does not pay 30 million dollars for a middle reliever. The plan is and always has been to make him a starter, and I think it will be 2011.

A 3rd pitch would help, and I think that'll be job #1 for Bryan Price this off-season. It probably needs to be a good changeup. MLB hitters will get to 105 mph fastballs if they can sit on it. He needs to change speeds more effectively and improve the command a bit. If he can do those two things, he might be the best pitcher in baseball. He's that naturally gifted.

Vottomatic
10-11-2010, 02:36 PM
Make him the closer. We have too many starters.

And I'm not convinced he's ready to start. We have better options (Arroyo, Wood, Leake, Bailey, Volquez, Cueto).

He's 105 mph fastball has proved hittable. He needs to work on his off speed stuff and location.

And $30M is paid over alot of years. He's only making $3M+ each season........much cheaper than Cordero's $12M.

kfm
10-11-2010, 03:35 PM
Chapman actually throws more than two pitches. He throws a change-up and a two seamer. The reds decided to have him just throw the four seamer and the slider when they made him a reliever. He has much to do in the offseason and sharpening the changeup and the slider will be important. As far as his slider goes, he has already made great strides with it. Keep in mind, he had never seen himself pitch on video before. He made great strides this year and will have ups and downs. Another year of working on his changeup with Mario Soto and Brian Price can make all the difference. A guy with his arm is so much more valuabe than a closer. I would exhaust every avenue I had to determine if he can start, only then would I think about making him a closer.

Vottomatic
10-11-2010, 05:01 PM
Chapman actually throws more than two pitches. He throws a change-up and a two seamer. The reds decided to have him just throw the four seamer and the slider when they made him a reliever. He has much to do in the offseason and sharpening the changeup and the slider will be important. As far as his slider goes, he has already made great strides with it. Keep in mind, he had never seen himself pitch on video before. He made great strides this year and will have ups and downs. Another year of working on his changeup with Mario Soto and Brian Price can make all the difference. A guy with his arm is so much more valuabe than a closer. I would exhaust every avenue I had to determine if he can start, only then would I think about making him a closer.

.......and a team with an abundance of starters and searching for better bullpen help couldn't use Chapman in relief?

fielder's choice
10-11-2010, 07:41 PM
He's 105 mph fastball has proved hittable.



No it hasnt actually

mack12
10-11-2010, 07:53 PM
I hope he can continue to make strides as a starter, but it's not gonna happen all at one time.

kfm
10-11-2010, 09:05 PM
.......and a team with an abundance of starters and searching for better bullpen help couldn't use Chapman in relief?

Of course they could use him in the bullpen as a closer as a middle reliever, as a set up guy and and as a long guy. Wouldn't you love to have him in any of those roles. The question is not could they use him, but what is the best use of him. If you have a guy who you believe can be Randy Johnson, you don't waste him pitching 80 innings a year when he can eventually pitch well over 200 innings. We just saw first hand the value of top of the rotation pitchers in the playoffs. Chapman looks to have the tools to do that, not saying it is a done deal, but the package is there. I think it has been stated countless times on redzone (See Codero is Such a Waste of Money Thread), that you can find closers any where but TOR starters just don't grow on trees. A number one starter is always more valuable than a closer.

New York Red
10-12-2010, 12:36 AM
Make him the closer. We have too many starters.

And I'm not convinced he's ready to start. We have better options (Arroyo, Wood, Leake, Bailey, Volquez, Cueto).

He's 105 mph fastball has proved hittable. He needs to work on his off speed stuff and location.

And $30M is paid over alot of years. He's only making $3M+ each season........much cheaper than Cordero's $12M.
BAM. That's the sound of the hammer hitting squarely on the head of the nail. Good post, man. My thoughts exactly. Chapman's time as a starter is coming soon, but it doesn't necessarily have to be at the beginning of next year. We can wait a little longer.

NeilHamburger
10-12-2010, 12:49 AM
Yep, I think Chapman is one year away from harnessing all his stuff and becoming a great starter.

There were games this year where he threw nothing but fastballs all inning because he didn't have a feel for his slider. That simply won't work as a starter. He needs to continue to work with Price and the coaches this offseason and all spring on control and offspeed stuff. Then take that stuff into real MLB games and continue to fine tune it all year. By 2012 look out MLB.

krm1580
10-12-2010, 11:56 AM
If Chapman is going to be a starter he needs to go back to starting, the sooner, the better.

I understand his abilities made him a very unique weapon out of the bullpen and getting major league experience never hurts but it did not do much to help his overall development.

When he was a starter at Louisville he was not consistently in the 100s with his fastball. He becomes a reliever and every pitch is 100+, but it is 100+ straight as an arrow. Look at the Pitch Fx from the last Phillies game. His pitches are absolute darts that do not move at all. The fact that the opposing pitcher is able to get the fat part of the bat on it tells me all I need to know.

So my hope for Chapman is they put him back on the starter development track ASAP. Teach him to effectively change speeds, change some grips to get more movement and work with him on some additional pitches, a change, a 2 seam fastball. 95mph splitter :)

Hey Meat
10-12-2010, 12:11 PM
Closer for the next 10 years. Dump COCO.

Captain13
10-12-2010, 04:01 PM
.......and a team with an abundance of starters and searching for better bullpen help couldn't use Chapman in relief?

Or they could use Bailey, Wood or Leake in the pen.