Rapid Reaction: Yankees trade Chapman to Cubs for massive return including top prospects

Photo Credit: Jason Miller | Getty Images
After weeks of speculation and over 12 hours of intense trade rumors circulating between the Chicago Cubs and New York Yankees, Aroldis Chapman has finally been traded. A trade that had the potential to turn into an all-out blockbuster, the official trade that has been announced is Cubs number one overall prospect, Gleyber Torres (SS), number five prospect Billy McKinney (OF), familiar face Adam Warren (RHP), and Rashad Crawford (OF) for Chapman.

Gleyber Torres
Torres, 19, was the Chicago Cubs’ top prospect and the 24th ranked prospect in all of baseball (eighth ranked shortstop) according to MLB.com. Now, he will become the Yankees' top prospect in the farm system. He is three and a half years younger than the average player in class-A advanced. Standing at 6’1” and weighing 175 pounds, Torres has slashed .275/.359/.433 with 23 doubles, three triples, and nine home runs in 94 games with the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. Although he is currently a shortstop, he also profiles very well as a second baseman and third baseman. With Didi Gregorius showing no signs of playing his way out of New York, and Jorge Mateo on the rise (potentially profiling as a second baseman), we could see Torres getting a lot of playing time at third base in the minors. One concern was that the Yankees appear to be accumulating middle infield talent which many find unnecessary. However, at this point, the Yankees should be getting as much young talent as possible that way they are expendable in later trades, or developed at various positions, as shortstops are the best position to accumulate young talent. His scouting grades are as follows: Hit 60 | Power 45 | Run 55 | Arm 60 | Field 55 | Overall 55. Torres projects to be an everyday starter at the very least with the upside to be an All-Star caliber player.
Photo Credit: Patrick Cavey | MiLB.com
Billy McKinney
The Yankees also received the Cubs number five prospect Billy McKinney. McKinney, 21, is a former first round pick by the Oakland Athletics in 2013, as he was a part of the Jeff Samardzija trade that also gave the Cubs All-Star shortstop Addison Russell. Not only is McKinney the fifth ranked prospect a Cubs farm system that is one of the best in baseball, but he is the 75th ranked prospect in all of baseball. His numbers this season are underwhelming, but as a corner outfielder, he projects to have very good gap power with a bunch of doubles and 15 or more homers. He’s slashing .252/.355/.322 in Double-A, though he is three years younger than the average AA player. He’s a career .281 hitter in the minor leagues. His scouting grades grade out to the following: Hit 60 | Power 45 | Run 50 | Arm 45 | Field 50 | Overall 55. He also projects to be an everyday starter and is still developing.
Photo Credit: Aldrin Capulong
Adam Warren
Another guy the Yankees were given in this deal with Adam Warren. The versatile pitcher who will provide the Yankees with likely help in the seventh inning, or he may join the starting rotation. This season has been a struggle for Warren as he never got in a grove in Chicago with his 3-2 record and 5.91 ERA. He was actually sent to Triple-A yesterday due to his struggles, but he should become comfortable again with the Yankees. In 147 career appearances with the Yankees including 20 starts, Warren was 13-15 with a very respectable 3.39 ERA striking out 7.6 batters per nine innings pitched. The Yankees traded Warren and Brendan Ryan to the Cubs for Starlin Castro, and now they have Warren back in their hands.
Photo Via MLB.com
Rashad Crawford
The final guy the Cubs threw into this five player deal was outfielder Rashad Crawford. Now, Crawford is not going to be on many of the Cubs’ top prospect boards, but he is valuable and a nice throw-in to this deal. Crawford is known for his incredible work ethic and blazing speed. He also has the ability to play all three outfield positions. His 6’3” 185-pound frame is very respectable and his left-handed stick should be a plus in Yankee Stadium if he gets to the big leagues eventually. He was in Class-A Advanced with the Cubs where he was hitting .255/.327/.386 with three homers, 18 doubles and eight triples in 83 games. He has also has 22 steals in 28 attempts on the year. Crawford is not going to highlight this return for the Yankees by any means, but it’s a nice addition to the package.
Photo Credit: Larry Kave
Aroldis Chapman
Now that you’re excited about what the Yankees got in return, let’s turn the focus to what the Yankees gave up here. Obviously, Aroldis Chapman is one of, if not the most exciting pitcher in all of baseball. His fastball that routinely hits triple digits and devastating slider in the low 90’s to keep hitters off balanced has contributed to his 2.01 ERA and 21 saves in 22 opportunities. He’s also striking out an impressive 12.6 batters per nine innings pitched, but that is down from his career mark of 15.2. Chapman will now join Hector Rondon, Mike Montgomery, Carl Edwards Jr., Travis Wood, Pedro Strop, and more in a Chicago Cubs team that has to be the favorites to take the World Series crown in 2016. The Cubs gave up a lot to get him, but they managed to keep MLB talents Kyle Schwarber, Javier Baez, and Jorge Soler while getting the guy they wanted in Chapman. On the surface, this looks like a deal that works for both sides.
Photo Credit: Elsa | Getty Images
At the end of the day, the fact that Brian Cashman could get some top prospects and MLB talent in Warren for a rental reliever in Chapman deserves a round of applause. Keep in mind that Cashman cashed in with acquiring Chapman at the cheap price of Rookie Davis, Eric Jagielo, Caleb Cotham, and Tony Renda this offseason. He has now turned that into top prospects Gleyber Torres, Billy McKinney, Adam Warren, and Rashad Crawford. Chapman has already expressed interest in returning to the Yankees this offseason if he was to be traded. The hope at this point is, he gets a ring with the Chicago Cubs, then returns to the Yankees this winter as a free agent. Then, Cashman will look like a genius.

MLB Pipeline re-ranks their top 100 prospects tomorrow, and with the additions of Torres and McKinney, the Yankees currently have the following prospects in the top 100:

24. Gleyber Torres (SS/2B/3B)
26. Jorge Mateo (SS/2B)
27. Aaron Judge (OF)
50. Gary Sanchez (C)
75. Billy McKinney (OF)

The Yankees farm system is on the rise, and we could see Yankees first rounder (OF) Blake Rutherford cracking that top 100 list tomorrow, as well as last year's first rounder (RHP) James Kaprielian. In a seller's market, the Yankees set the bar high for relievers as they look to stockpile an abundance of young talent to improve the farm system. They may now begin fielding offers for Andrew Miller, whose price tag is going to be even higher than Chapman's.

Article by: Chad Raines
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