Chapman trains with friend in Miami, Yankees don’t rule out his return

Aroldis Chapman

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The New York Yankees didn’t consider Aroldis Chapman for their ALDS roster on disciplinary grounds. However, the pitcher is spending time in his home’s backyard in Davie, Florida, preparing for a possible return.

For the last three days, Chapman is practicing with a friend who used to be his catcher when they got to play together in Cuba. The friend puts on the gear, squatted down, and Chapman throws fastballs at him.

The pitcher is a workout beast, and he has also been lifting weights in his home gym to keep his already very fit body in top shape.

Another friend of him revealed that the left-hander pitcher watched the Yankees’ postseason opening, a 4-1 triumph against the Cleveland Guardians in Game 1 of their Division Series, on television.

Even though it seems that the Yankees won’t need Chapman after his exit last Friday he still seems to care about them in some way. The pitcher wasn’t sure he would be on their ALDS roster and failed to attend the mandatory workout session. Manager Aaron Boone acted to rule him out of the ALDS games following his unsatisfactory absence.

Though Chapman’s inevitable breakup with the Yankees has another crazy chapter, the seven-time All-Star is keeping himself ready for a very unlikely return in later playoff rounds.

After the Yankees’ last game of the regular season on Wednesday in Arlington, Texas, the pitcher returned to Florida to spend Thursday at home. On Friday, the Yankees had a mandatory workout where Chapman was supposed to throw a bullpen.

Chapman didn’t go to the workout because he had heard that he might not be on the ALDS roster. This was likely because he had been having trouble on and off all season. A source claimed that led to Yankees’ general manager Brian Cashman calling the player and yelling at him and fining him $10,000.

After that, Chapman’s manager, Aaron Boone, called him and told him to stay in Florida.

Even though it’s unlikely, Boone didn’t say on Tuesday that Chapman couldn’t come back and try out for a spot on the team if the Yankees make it to the American League Championship Series.

“We’ll see,” Boone said. “For now, he’s staying away. I know he’s throwing down in Miami, but for now, he’s away.”

Chapman, who is 34, will be a free agent at the end of the season, and it’s thought that neither side wants to sign a new deal. Throughout the 2022 season, he had trouble keeping his pitches under control. In June, Clay Holmes, who had been the Yankees’ closer for many years, beat him out for the job. Holmes was so good in the first half of the season that he was chosen to represent the Yankees at the All-Star Game.

Chapman’s 4.46 ERA at the end of the season was the highest of his career. He had 43 strikeouts and 36 walks in 36 1/3 innings, which was a career-high. All nine of the chances he had to save the game were in the first two months of the season.

Can Chapman make a comeback with the Yankees?

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