Cokin’s Corner, Monday 7/25/16

  • July 25, 2016

If the reports are on target, a big deal between the Yankees and Cubs is about to take place. Aroldis Chapman, clearly the top closer on the market, appears to be heading to the Cubs with the Yankees obtaining perhaps the top Cubs prospect and more in return.

There isn’t any question Chapman would be a huge boost to the Cubs bullpen. He is as dominant as it gets with the triple digit heat and Chapman would immediately shore up one of the very few potential  liabilities for the Cubs come playoff time.

The Yankees being in sell mode is strange to be sure, but it’s absolutely necessary. This is not a playoff team presently, and the farm system continues to be less than formidable in terms of legit major league prospects. Gleyber Torres would likely ascend to the very top of the organization’s top prospect list, ahead of both Jorge Mateo and Gary Sanchez. Interestingly, Torres and Mateo are each at shortstop in Hi-A ball this season, so one would assume that a position change will be in order for one of the two youngsters. Since Mateo has already been seeing time at 2B for Tampa this season, I don’t think there’s much question about that decision.

The other prospect being mentioned in this deal is Eloy Jimenez, an outfielder who is enjoying a fine season at South Bend. Jimenez made quite an impression at the Futures Game with a spectacular leaping catch of a foul ball. He’s a big kid who is probably three years away from the majors, but his stock has gone up this season and he’d be a strong second prospect garb if this deal gets made.

I don’t know if the Cubs will do this deal if it’s strictly a rental. There is talk that Theo Epstein wants an extension in place for Chapman. While there’s little doubt he’s a needed commodity right now for a team that wants to win it all, one has to wonder just how much the Cubs are willing to part with for what could be a short term gain.

If and when this trade gets finalized, it’s going to kick off what should be a frenzied week of activity. I’m certainly eager to watch everything unfold!

I had a nice week on the diamond, but coughed back a couple of units with an 0-2 Sunday. Almost needless to say, both were one-run decisions as I continue to have a terrible time winning close games. Nevertheless, it’s been an okay July and it could turn out to be an outstanding month if I can put together a good final week.

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Sunday’s free play went down as the Royals were somewhat surprisingly shut down by Rangers righty AJ Griffin and the Texas bullpen. I’ll try to rebound with a road fog on the Monday slate.

PHILLIES (Hellickson)  at  MARLINS (Cosart)

Take: PHILLIES +120

Miami is a good looking team right now, but the one liability that stats out is the back of the rotation. I don’t see Jarred Cosart being a solution. The righty has never put it together at this level, and he really hasn’t been especially effective of late at AAA with New Orleans.

So there’s a pretty substantial advantage here for Jeremy Hellickson, who has been rock solid recently for the Phillies. It’s also worth noting that Hellickson has had Miami’s number this year. He’s beaten the Marlins twice, and the Phils have won all three of his starts in the series this season.

If Hellickson can put together another decent effort here, I have to think that the road dog is plenty live as Cosart is clearly hittable. The price is somewhat reflective of the pitching disparity as it opened on the low side and got bet down a bit during the evening, but I still see reason to give the Phillies a roll here.