Aroldis Chapman Suspension Reportedly Won't Include Spring Training Games

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistFebruary 23, 2016

New York Yankees pitcher Aroldis Chapman throws a ball during a spring training baseball workout Friday, Feb. 19, 2016, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)
Chris O'Meara/Associated Press

If New York Yankees reliever Aroldis Chapman gets suspended for an alleged domestic dispute, he will reportedly be unable to serve part of it during spring training.  

According to a Feb. 23 report by Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times, citing a person familiar with the situation who was not authorized to discuss it, Chapman's potential suspension will not include exhibition games.    

Shaikin's report noted that the commissioner ultimately decides suspensions under the domestic violence policy, whereas the drug policy mandates suspensions include only regular-season and playoff games. 

On Saturday, Jayson Stark of ESPN reported "if Chapman appeals a potential suspension and the players' union files a grievance, union chief Tony Clark said on Friday he wasn't sure whether Chapman's fate could be decided before Opening Day."

On Feb. 20, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reported that part of Chapman's punishment could include a ban from participating in spring training. 

A source told Feinsand that "while a spring training ban is hardly a certainty, nothing could be ruled out since the new agreement leaves MLB and its players 'in new territory' when it comes to discipline in domestic violence cases."

Joel Sherman of the New York Post echoed Feinsand's report, adding that "at the request of the club and with the consent of the Commissioner’s Office, the player may participate in non-public workouts or at the club’s spring training facility."

On Feb. 21, ESPN.com's Buster Olney wrote that suspending a player for spring training games under the domestic violence policy would "be seen as an empty gesture by a lot of players and fans. There is no way around that."

Tim Brown and Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports obtained police reports that stated Chapman allegedly fired a gun eight times in the garage of his Miami-area home and his girlfriend told police he "'choked' her and pushed her against a wall."

The Los Angeles Dodgers originally agreed to a deal with the Cincinnati Reds to acquire Chapman but moved on from the left-hander following the domestic violence allegations, per MLB Network's Jon Heyman. The Yankees dealt four minor leagues to Cincinnati on Dec. 28 for Chapman. 

Rafael Olmeda of the Sun Sentinel reported on Jan. 21 that Chapman wouldn't face criminal charges in the case. 

However, per Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said on Feb. 19 he expects "that we will have some action on at least two out of the three [domestic violence cases] in the next few days."

Chapman has stated to the media he plans to appeal any suspension MLB hands down in the case. It's unclear how many games the 27-year-old could be penalized, as Manfred can decide appropriate punishment at his discretion, per terms of the agreement between MLB and the union. 


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