I had hoped to turn these player intros our at a pace today so we could be ready for any additional trades if the Cubs make them so here's another.
Along with Arodys Vizcaino who we'll discuss in more detail later, the Cubs also acquired 25 year old RHP Jaye Chapman from the Braves for Reed Johnson and Paul Maholm. He was drafted in the 16th round in 2005 and isn't especially big. He's just 6'0 and weighs 195 pounds.
He didn't begin playing in 2005 and in 2006 he had a disastrous pro debut in rookie league. He made 5 starts and had 14 appearances overall. He threw 34.1 innings and allowed 46 hits. He struckout only 6.3 per 9 and walked 5.5 per 9. He's only made 6 starts since.
Back at rookie league, he made only 3 appearances before being promoted. In 2007 overall Chapman threw 44.2 innings and allowed 37 hits. He cut his walk rate down to 4 per 9 and his strikeout rate rocketed up to 11.1. He had an ERA of about 5.5 and an FIP about 4.
The following year, 2008, he split time between A ball and HIgh. His strikeouts dropped considerably (7.2 per 9). In 2009 it jumped to 10 per 9. The first four years of his minor league career he had K/9 rates of 6.3, 11.1, 7.2 and 10.2. This is an example of why sample size is important.
Fast forward a couple years and he's been stuck in AAA in 2011 and 2012. He's thrown 108.1 innings, allowed 86 hits, walked 55 and struckout 121. The guy can strike some batters out and he's going to walk his fair share too. He's pitched well enough at AAA (3.25 ERA, ~3.4 FIP) that it wouldn't be a surprise to see the Cubs call him up sometime soon.
In his career he's thrown 371 innings, allowed 339 hits and struckout 9.6 per 9 and has walked 4.3 per 9.
Chapman is the rare righthander whose changeup functions as his out-pitch, but it's so good—many scouts grade it as a 60 on the 20-to-80 scouting scale—that he could carve out a big league career in middle relief. He ranked fifth among International League relievers with 10.1 strikeouts per nine innings at the time of the trade. Chapman scrapes 90 mph with a fringe fastball and typically sits 87-89, doing a good job locating the ball down in the strike zone. His lack of velocity disallows him from working above the knees. Chapman works in on lefty batters with a fringy, low-80s slider, but they actually hit him hard in Triple-A this season (.298/.394/.457 in 94 at-bats) after managing just a .636 OPS at the same level last year. A member of Atlanta's 40-man roster, Chapman has two option years remaining after this season.
Sickels didn't rank him among the top 20 Braves prospects entering the season and like Brigham, he's at best a C prospect. He had somewhere between $1-2 million in value at the time of the trade.
I'll do further analysis on this trade after we profile Arodys Vizcaino.