NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Aroldis Chapman says Cubs manager Joe Maddon misused him during the postseason, putting the hard-throwing reliever on the mound too often in Chicago’s successful effort to win the World Series for the first time since 1908.
Traded from the New York Yankees to Chicago in late July, Chapman got the victory in Game 7 against Cleveland after wasting an eighth-inning lead. He became a free agent and agreed to an $86 million, five-year contract to return to the Yankees, a deal finalized Thursday.
“I believe there were a couple times where maybe I shouldn’t be put in the game and he put me in. So I think personally, I don’t agree the way he used me,” Chapman said through a translator Friday.
“But he is the manager, and he has the strategy,” Chapman said. “My job is to be ready, to be ready to pitch, whatever that is, however many innings it is. I need to ready for that, and I need to go in and do my job.”
Chapman threw 273 pitches in 13 postseason appearances, including 42 over 2 2/3 innings in Game 5, when he got his first eight-out save in the Cubs’ 3-2 win.
He threw 20 on one day’s rest to get four outs in Game 6, then 35 more in Game 7 when he entered with a 6-3 lead and allowed Brandon Guyer’s RBI double and Rajai Davis’ two-run homer.
Asked for an example of misuse, Chapman cited Game 6, when he entered with a 7-2 lead in the bottom of the seventh with two on and two outs. Francisco Lindor hit a grounder to first and originally was called safe, a ruling reversed when a video review concluded Chapman beat him to the bag after catching Anthony Rizzo’s throw.
“I don’t think I needed to come into the game,” Chapman said. “The important game was going to be Game 7 because basically we had that game almost won, and the next day I came in a little tired.”
Maddon did not immediately respond to a message Friday seeking comment. Speaking before Game 7, he said: “Yesterday, that was a really clear-cut decision for me how to work that inning. The threat there, was that had we not done it, then Aroldis would have had a more stressful 1 2/3 innings in the eighth or ninth inning.”
Chapman also was pursued in free agency by the Miami Marlins, who made a back-loaded offer and do not offer no-trade provisions.
“The Marlins were close on signing me, but at the end my wish was to come back to the Yankees,” he said. “I also wanted to be part of a young team, like the Yankees have now and not go to the Marlins because as you all know from time to time they change their team a lot, and I wanted to have a stable team of young players where I could feel at home.”
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