The postseason has a razor thin margin for error. Every single plate appearance is under a microscope. For the New York Yankees, who have not been the World Series since 2009, that pressure is going to be even higher as reaching the postseason is not good enough any longer.
It also means that every single player on the roster has to be capable of performing when called upon. This is not the case with Aroldis Chapman.
New York Yankees have Aroldis Chapman problem
In theory, Chapman should be a key part of their postseason bullpen. His overall numbers may be rough, and his command is a tightrope act at this point, but he is still a pitcher who had been a solid closer as recently as last year. Chapman even had five consecutive scoreless outings, allowing one hit and three walks while striking out five in his 4.1 innings since his latest stint on the Injured List.
Then came Sunday. Once again, Chapman’s high wire act without a net ended in disaster as he allowed two runs on three walks and a hit, the only out he recorded coming via the strikeout. He walked the last batter he faced with the bases loaded, forcing in a run and bringing an end to his afternoon.
That pitch should also mark the last time Chapman takes the mound in pinstripes. While there are three games left, that time should be used to get important members of the bullpen some work before the bye. It should be a time when the Yankees set up their relief corps for the playoffs and get ready for the second round.
And that cannot include Chapman. While he has been an excellent closer for the Yankees over the years, that is no longer the case. He has become a liability, his command issues making him virtually unusable in any close game. In the postseason, that is a waste of a roster spot when relievers need to be ready at any point.
The New York Yankees need relievers they can trust during the playoffs. Aroldis Chapman is not that and should be left off the postseason roster.