8:52pm: “I think it’s still a ways to go,” said GM Walt Jocketty to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. “We’re still hopeful to get something done. We’re glad [Phillips] feels that way.”
4:31pm: Brandon Phillips has made it no secret that he'd like a long-term contract extension from the Reds, and a few weeks ago we heard that the two sides were making progress towards a new deal. Earlier this afternoon, Phillips said (on Twitter) that he spoke to his agent and "it feels good to know that we're moving in the right direction" towards an extension.
The Red exercised Phillips' $12MM option for next season earlier this month, but the second baseman said he would consider it a "slap in the face" if the team picked up the option without talking about a new contract. He also indicated that he wouldn't give the team a hometown discount. Phillips, 30, hit .300/.353/.457 with 18 homers in 674 plate appearances for Cincinnati in 2011.