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Reds avoid arbitration with Chapman

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The Cincinnati Reds avoided arbitration with another pitcher as Aroldis Chapman agreed to a 1-year, $5 million contract on Tuesday.

Chapman had asked for $5.4 initially while the Reds offered $4.6 million, but the two sides met in the middle to secure him as the closer for the Reds. Since taking over the closer's role from Francisco Cordero, he has put together back-to-back 38 save seasons.

Last year he fed off the home crowd at Great American Ballpark, converting all 20 opportunities while maintaining a 0.66 ERA. On the road last season he had five blown saves and an ERA of 5.96. In 40 home appearances Chapman racked up 79 strikeouts compared to the 33 in 28 road appearances. He also made his second All-Star team in 2013.

His signing means that only Homer Bailey remains unsigned in the arbitration process. Bailey is seeking $11.6 million, a significant raise from the $5.35 million he made last season and the $8.7 million the Reds offered him. It's no surprise that Bailey is seeking such a hefty pay day after he tossed his second no-hitter in as many years. The Reds may be tentative to go that high. After his no hitter, he allowed 40 hits in his next five starts going 1-4. Overall he was 11-12 with a 3.49 ERA with 199 strikeouts in 209 innings pitched.

Cincinnati also signed infielder Chris Nelson to a minor league deal on Monday. Last season he played for the Rockies, Yankees, and the Angels and is a lifetime .268 hitter.


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