The hottest topic up for debate this offseason is whether or not the Reds plan on using Aroldis Chapman as a starter or reliever in 2013. Of course, the team was facing the very same predicament last offseason as well. Injuries eventually forced Cincinnati's hand to stick Chapman in the bullpen for the 2012 campaign. Needless to say, he did quite well (68g, 1.51 ERA, 38 SV), finishing 12th in NL MVP voting. But many wonder if he would be better served in the starting rotation.
Here is Tim McMaster, Jim Duquette, and Matthew Leach of MLB.com giving their thoughts on what the team should do with their prized left-hander. They appear to have mixed opinions as well.
Here's my quick take for what it's worth: Don't fix something that isn't broke.
The Reds have a good thing going with Chapman in the closer role. He's proven to be more than effective there and is the closest thing to automatic as they come. One cannot assume that he would experience the same kind of success by starting. Plus the rotation isn't too shabby without him. Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos, and Homer Bailey make for a solid front three, Bronson Arroyo has a track record of reliability, and Mike Leake is your typical No. 5 starter. Having a guy like Chapman at the backend of the 'pen to close games cannot be taken for granted.
With that being said, I would be interested in seeing how Chapman would fare on an every fifth day basis. He could very well be the next modern day Justin Verlander, but its in the best interest of the team right now that he remain their closer. That's just my opinion.