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The Daily Bernie, 7/26/16: Aroldis Chapman trade finalized

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In perhaps the biggest trade so far, Aroldis Chapman was officially sent to the Chicago Cubs on Monday in exchange for a huge return, and buzz continues to surround Chris Sale, among other news.

Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees
Chapman officially joins the North Side.
Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Welcome back to the Daily Bernie! It’s the best dance in the game, so let’s get rolling once more!

  • The Aroldis Chapman deal was finalized and announced on Monday morning, as the flamethrowing lefty was sent from the New York Yankees to the Chicago Cubs. Reports about a potential extension between the Cubs and Chapman turned out to be false. The return for the Yankees was top shortstop prospect Gleyber Torres, outfielders Billy McKinney and Rashad Crawford, and former Yankee right-hander Adam Warren. This is quite a significant haul in exchange for only half a season of the southpaw, and many in the industry agree that it seems to be an overpay. However, as shown in last winter’s Craig Kimbrel and Ken Giles trades, the price for elite relief help has become very high.
  • The bizarre Chris Sale incident on Saturday hasn’t reduced the lefty’s immense trade value, as Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports writes in his most recent “10 Degrees” column. The White Sox asking price for the ace has started with premier young talent, including Yoan Moncada and Andrew Benintendi of the Boston Red Sox, Julio Urias of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Nomar Mazara of the Texas Rangers, or Alex Bregman of the Houston Astros. While this insanely high (and justified) price makes a deal seem unlikely, the Dodgers, surprisingly, are willing to deal Urias in a trade for Sale, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. Urias is only 19, and has all the talent and upside in the world. However, he might not be ready to throw 200 innings for another two years. A swap of Urias and a handful of other talented Dodgers youngsters for Sale could make quite a bit of sense for both sides.
  • The scuffling Texas Rangers are clinging to a slim 3.5 game lead in the AL West over the rival Houston Astros (although Ryan Madson is doing everything he can to change that), and thus have been in the center of many trade rumors. Most recently, they have been connected to Kansas City Royals righty Edinson Volquez, per Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. The Royals are in a tough spot - the defending world champions fell to two games under .500 with a loss to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Monday night, and are now eight and a half games behind the AL Central-leading Cleveland Indians. While the club will be hesitant to sell after their first World Series title in 30 years, a championship repeat seems less and less likely each day. The Rangers, on the other hand, have been connected to virtually every arm on the market, including A’s starters Rich Hill and Sonny Gray. The team could even look to add to their offense, having lost designated hitter Prince Fielder for the rest of the season to neck surgery.
  • The Miami Marlins are another team desperately searching for starting pitching, and now they have been connected to Angels lefty Hector Santiago (per Jon Morosi of Fox Sports), Phillies righty Jeremy Hellickson (per Ken Rosenthal, also of Fox Sports), and Yankees righties Michael Pineda and Ivan Nova (per Sherman). The Yankees re-acquisition of Warren could allow them to make Pineda or Nova available, while the Angels and Phillies are both well out of the race with not much of a reason to hang onto Santiago and Hellickson, respectively. It could be difficult for Miami to add a real impact arm, however - their farm is already extremely weak...

Bernie’s Daily Deal: Rich Hill to the Miami Marlins for Carter Capps, Jarlin Garcia, and Josh Naylor

...which could force Miami to get creative. I won’t take credit for this idea - Joel Sherman suggested it in his article, linked above. Carter Capps is currently rehabbing from preseason Tommy John Surgery, which means there is plenty of risk involved. However, one can’t forget about the risk that Rich Hill brings as well. At his best, Capps could be one of the best relievers in the game. Almost 26, the righty struck out 58 batters in 31 innings in 2015, posting a clean 1.16 ERA (1.10 FIP). Capps has two more seasons of team control after 2016.

In addition to taking a chance on a once-dominant reliever, the A’s would also grab one of Miami’s top pitching prospects. Jarlin Garcia is a 23 year-old lefty that sits in the low nineties. He is far from a finished product, as the strike-throwing southpaw isn’t exactly dominating Double-A. His deceptive delivery and plus command give him back-end or possibly mid-rotation upside, but if it doesn’t quite click he could be a solid lefty reliever.

The final piece, Josh Naylor, has plenty of upside. The 2015 first round pick is likely a first baseman only, and the 19 year-old is quite a few years off. However, the left-handed hitter has solid contact skills and big power, and could become a starting first baseman in a few years, or prime trade bait.

I’ll admit it - this isn’t the sexiest trade idea, especially for a guy that’s been as dominant as Hill. Capps might never be the same after such a big injury, Garcia could flame out, and Naylor is still very young. However, Hill’s durability concerns are very real and will limit his value. In addition, plenty of unexpected names are popping up on the trade block, making the market not as thin as expected. While far from the likeliest or most attractive deal, a move like this could pay dividends for the A’s in the coming years.

That’s all for today. Sonny Gray will look to bounce back against Nick Martinez and the Texas Rangers at 5:05 PM. Feel free to dump any links in the comments below. Until tomorrow - lean on, A’s fans!