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Sherman On Tanaka, Reds, Chapman, Choo

Here's a look at the latest news courtesy of the New York Post's Joel Sherman..

  • Sherman senses genuine worry from several teams about the way the Rakuten Golden Eagles used Masahiro Tanaka over the last few years.  In five postseason starts, Tanaka threw four complete games, including 160 pitches in Game 6 of the championship series.  The next day, he threw 15 more pitches to get the save in the clinching game.  An executive from an interested club said that he still expects significant bidding on Tanaka, but says that the pitcher will have to get through "the most thorough physical ever" to get a deal completed.
  • The Reds haven't showed their hand one way or another, but one team official believes that the ship has sailed on convincing Aroldis Chapman to pitch as a starter and the time to do it would have been last year.  With Bronson Arroyo likely going elsewhere, the Reds may have to think about finding an out-of-house replacement if Chapman won't join the rotation.  It's also possible that they could choose to stand pat and roll with a starting five of Homer Bailey, Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos, Mike Leake, and Tony Cingrani.
  • Don't count the Reds out in the bidding for Shin-Soo Choo, even though the price tag could exceed $100MM.  Cincinnati believes Billy Hamilton is ready to handle center field defensively, but they'd prefer he get more time in the minors to further refine his offense.  If they re-sign Choo, they can have him handle center field for one more year and maybe transition him to a corner in 2015, opening up a spot for the speedy Hamilton.








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