Source: Chapman close to MLB deal
Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman appears to be closing in on an agreement to play Major League Baseball, though his agent said that no deal is complete.
One source told ESPN The Magazine's Jorge Arangure that the team is the Cincinnati Reds.
The source said the contract is believed to be worth $30 million for the left-handed pitcher.
Chapman's representatives said the deal is not done and would not confirm the team, but did say the Reds are "possible."
"We have to wait still," agent Rodney Fernandez wrote to ESPN The Magazine in a text message in regards to a possible deal with the Reds. "It's possible. We'll see."
Reports earlier last week had the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Angels in the bidding for Chapman.
Chapman attended a Yankees playoff game in New York and also visited Red Sox officials in Fenway Park while he was still represented by his previous agent, Edwin Mejia. Last month, Chapman held a workout in Houston attended by more than a dozen teams, including the Red Sox, who have scouted him extensively in international play.
He was also being courted by the Toronto Blue Jays and Florida Marlins, though the Miami Herald reported last week that the Marlins would drop out of the bidding if the price exceeded $20 million.
Sunday, Yahoo! Sports reported that Chapman would sign with a National League team.
Chapman, 22, was a sensation pitching for the Cuban national team in last spring's World Baseball Classic, with a fastball that topped 100 mph, but some officials have expressed concerns about his control.
"He's the real deal,'' one scout told ESPNBoston.com on Thursday. "He's a real good athlete. When he was pitching for Cuba, it was almost like he was a reliever when he was starting, told to throw as hard as he could for as long as he could.
"He's not ready for the big leagues yet, but he has a fabulous arm. His slider is going to be a plus pitch, and though he has no feel yet for the changeup, his arm action is good and that could come with time.''