Blue Jays: MLB Insider names the Yankees as potential landing spot for Matt Chapman
By Edward Eng
With the torrid start by Toronto Blue Jays’ third baseman Matt Chapman, it wouldn’t have come at a better time in his career as he has put himself in great position entering free agency at the end of the season. In 13 games, Chapman has 23 hits, 10 runs scored, three home runs, 15 RBI, six walks and 11 strikeouts to go along with a .460 batting average and a 1.318 OPS. In addition, he was just named the AL Player of the Week during the past week.
This amazing start by Chapman has certainly caught the eye of many people, as he is currently performing way above and beyond his usual career numbers. So much that even MLB Insider Jon Heyman believes both the New York Yankees and the New York Mets will be among those with strong interest in Chapman and would be his most likely fit when free agency hits.
Both of their current starting third basemen, Josh Donaldson (NYY) and Eduardo Escobar (NYM), have their contracts expiring at the end of the current season, with Donaldson turning 38 and Escobar turning 35 in the 2023-24 offseason. The Yankees haven’t had a bonafide, star-caliber, Gold Glove third baseman since the days of prime Alex Rodriguez, and the Mets haven’t had one either since over a decade ago in David Wright. With both teams known for acquiring notable superstars in the past, it’s to no surprise that they could be interested in Chapman.
Chapman is also entering a year in which the free agent pool is relatively weak in terms of positional players. In particular, at third base, he will be competing with free agents in the likes of Evan Longoria, Gio Urshela, Joey Wendle, and the aforementioned Donaldson and Escobar. As a result, Chapman should be destined for a huge payout and for someone who will be 30-years-old and in his prime, it is expected that a huge nine-digit, multi-year contract could be at play. With both the Yankees and Mets known for shelling out the dollars for big free agents, such as Gerrit Cole and DJ LeMahieu for the former and Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander for the latter, look for both New York teams to be in strong contention for the services of Chapman.
Heyman also mentioned that the Chicago Cubs, San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Blue Jays would be logical destinations for Chapman as well. With Chapman excelling currently with the Jays and enjoying every moment of it, hopefully the Jays can at least try to convince Chapman to stay by having a successful 2023 season, as well as a potential World Series run.