Rainout Notes: Chapman, Gore, Heller

The second game of the Rays and Yankees was rained out Wednesday night in the Bronx and play a single-admission doubleheader starting at 3 p.m. with Domingo Germán on the hill.

The Yankees are likely to use an opener for game two, with Chad Green being the likely culprit. The Yankees have not announced a 26th man, though Chance Adams (scheduled to start for SWB) seems like a safe bet. He’d only be active for game two.

Despite the lack of game, yesterday was rather busy for the Yankees:

Chapman Refutes Opt-Out Report

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Aroldis Chapman found himself in the headlines when a Ken Rosenthal notes column in The Athletic quoted someone close to the lefty as saying he’d “one million percent” opt out of the remaining part of his contract after the season.

Chapman, who would be guaranteed two more years and approximately $34.4 million should he stay in New York, aggressively pushed back on the idea that he was ready to leave town.

“The report is completely false. I haven’t even spoken to my agent about it. Like I said before, we have a big task in front of us, which is to win the division and win the World Series. That’s the main focus for me right now. Contract stuff hasn’t even crossed my mind at all.”

Aroldis Chapman, via interpreter, per Bryan Hoch (MLB.com)

Despite a tough outing July 15 where he allowed a go-ahead home run to Travis d’Arnaud, Chapman has enjoyed a statistically strong season. He owns a 2.45 ERA (2.10 FIP) with the ERA jumping 68 points from that three-run homer to d’Arnaud. His strikeouts are down compared to last season, but he has managed to reign in his walks (down to 2.9 per 9 innings). Baseball Savant notes he’s throwing about 7.5% more sliders this year as well.

It’s not unreasonable to think that Chapman could do better than his current deal, with Craig Kimbrel sitting out half the season and receiving three years and $34 million from the Cubs.

So far, that’s not what’s on Chapman’s mind.

Yankees Acquire Terrance Gore

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The postseason pinch runner has arrived for the Yankees. The team announced Wednesday that they had acquired speedy outfielder Terrance Gore from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for cash.

Gore has amassed just 77 MLB plate appearances in his career, but has stolen 40 bases in 49 chances since his debut for the Royals in 2014. He’s the owner of a .224/.325/.284 (70 wRC+) slash line in the big leagues.

He had been designated for assignment July 12 by Kansas City. It seems Gore cleared waivers and accepted an outright assignment with the Yankees.

Ben Heller Suffers Rehab Setback

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Righty Ben Heller, who has been working his way back from Tommy John surgery, was pulled off his rehab assignment Wednesday after feeling pain in his elbow/forearm.

He had made five appearances, three with Tampa and two with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, without allowing a run (6.2 IP). It’s unclear what the next steps will be for Heller. The 27-year-old has not taken a big-league mound since Oct. 1, 2017.

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