Report: Royals signing veteran reliever Aroldis Chapman

New York Yankees' Aroldis Chapman delivers a pitch during the ninth inning of a baseball game...
New York Yankees' Aroldis Chapman delivers a pitch during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2018, in New York. The Yankees won 4-1. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)(AP)
Published: Jan. 19, 2023 at 3:12 PM CST
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - Seven-time All-Star Aroldis Chapman is headed to the Kansas City Royals, according to a report.

MLB Network Insider Mark Feinsand first reported the news Thursday afternoon that the 34-year-old left-handed closer would sign with the Royals.

Chapman has pitched for four Major Leagues teams in his career, including the Chicago Cubs for whom he won a World Series in 2016.

Chapman was once among baseball’s most dynamic pitchers, known for consistently throwing 100 mph or more. But the left-hander, who will be 35 on opening day, is coming off the worst season of his 13-year career, going 4-4 with a 4.46 ERA for the Yankees in 2022 while raising questions about his dedication to his team.

He spent time on the injured list with Achilles tendinitis in May, and then lost the closer job to Clay Holmes. He was on the IL again in August for a leg infection following a tattoo, and then was kept off New York’s roster for the AL Division Series after missing a mandatory team workout and drawing the ire of manager Aaron Boone.

At his best, Chapman has been a dynamic closer, making his most recent All-Star team just two years ago. And the Royals hope that new manager Matt Quatraro, along with a rebuilt coaching staff now guiding their pitchers, will be able to help Chapman rediscover the form that helped him save at least 30 games in eight different seasons.

He is 44-35 with a 2.48 ERA and 315 saves during his career with the Yankees, Reds and Cubs.

The Royals have been desperate for help in the bullpen, where they were fourth-worst in the majors with a 4.66 ERA last season. Their biggest free-agent acquisition thus far had been Ryan Yarbrough, who can start or work in long relief.

His one-year deal is worth $3.75 million, plus performance incentives, Feinsand reported.