Yankees Activate Aroldis Chapman, Designate David Hale

The Yankees announced Monday that they’ve reinstated closer Aroldis Chapman from the injured list and designated right-hander David Hale for assignment in order to create roster space.

Chapman is expected to step back into the closer’s role, pushing fellow southpaw Zack Britton back into a setup role. Chapman has yet to pitch this season after testing positive for the coronavirus in mid-July. He was cleared to resume baseball activities back on July 31, though, and has since been working to build up to game readiness. His return should only deepen an already formidable late-inning relief corps; Britton has allowed just one run through 8 1/3 frames while racking up eight saves. And Chapman himself is fresh off a 2.21 ERA and 13.4 K/9 through 57 innings last season.

Fans can be forgiven if they’ve lost track of how many times the Yankees have designated Hale for assignment at this point. The 32-year-old righty continues to post sharp numbers for the Yanks — he allowed two runs in six innings this season — but has been designated for assignment an astonishing four times in the past three years in addition to being outrighted off the team’s 40-man roster in the 2018-19 offseason. Hale has signed five minor league contracts with the Yankees since 2018.

For all the times he’s been cast…

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