Brandon Phillips Rumors

Jocketty On Ludwick, Chapman, Votto

It’s no secret that Reds GM Walt Jocketty intends to upgrade the Cincinnati outfield this offseason. Jocketty addressed his search for outfield help and other Reds-related questions in a conversation with MLBTR at the GM Meetings in Indian Wells, California. Here are the details.

  • Jocketty said the Reds hope to re-sign Ryan Ludwick this winter. “We’ve made some progress, but it’ll probably take another week or two before we know where we’re at,” the GM said. “
  • Ideally the Reds would like to add a leadoff hitter. Whether the newcomer plays center or left field has yet to be determined.
  • The Reds view Aroldis Chapman as a starting pitcher long-term and they could make him a starter in 2013 if they acquire a free agent reliever. “If we re-sign Ryan Madson or [Jonathan] Broxton or someone else it would allow us to move Chapman to the rotation,” Jocketty said. Pitching coach Bryan Price feels strongly that Chapman can become a top of the rotation starter.
  • Signing Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips in the spring helped the Reds focus on other needs this offseason, the GM said. “That was important for us to do, for sure.”

Quick Hits: Hamilton, Baker, Phillips, Martinez

Angels right-hander Michael Kohn will have Tommy John surgery tomorrow and will miss the season according to Mike DiGiovanna of The Los Angeles Times (on Twitter). Here are some assorted links for Wednesday…

  • The Rangers recently met with Mike Moye, agent for Josh Hamilton, but the two sides didn't get too deep into contract extension talks according to Jeff Wilson of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
  • The Twins hope to replace Scott Baker internally, but there's a chance he might not pitch for them again according to's Rhett Bollinger (Twitter links). Baker will miss the year with elbow surgery and the team holds a $9MM option for next season.
  • Talks between the Reds and Brandon Phillips about a contract extension started last March according to ESPN's Jim Bowden. Phillips' agreed to a new deal this week.
  • The Tigers have some hope that Victor Martinez will return late this season, according to Tom Gage of the Detroit News (Twitter links). The switch-hitting DH didn't need ACL reconstruction on his injured knee, and may return before the season's up. The Tigers won't know whether Martinez can play until they get MRI results in July.
  • Tom Krasovic of Inside the Padres reports that Padres owner John Moores initially sought $600MM for the team in 2008 and explains why it may sell for more this time around. The Padres are up for sale again, Moores announced yesterday.
  • Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram has the year-by-year breakdown for Ian Kinsler’s recent contract extension (Twitter link). The Rangers have a $10MM option for 2018 with a $5MM buyout.
  • Jim Callis of Baseball America reports that most teams believe Georgia high school outfielder Byron Buxton is the best prospect available in this year's amateur draft. There's a growing sense the Astros don't want to make a risky pick, yet there's no obvious second choice behind Buxton.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.

Reds To Extend Brandon Phillips

The Reds announced that they have agreed to extend second baseman Brandon Phillips through 2017. The ACES client will earn $72.5MM over the course of his new six-year contract, according to Jim Bowden of and MLB Network Radio. 

Brandon Phillips - Reds (PW)

Phillips would have been eligible for free agency following the 2012 season if the Reds hadn't locked him up. Instead, he'll be in Cincinnati through his age-36 season.

Phillips, now 30, posted a .300/.353/.457 line with 18 home runs and 38 doubles in 675 plate appearances last year. He won his third Gold Glove in 2011, and advanced assessments of his fielding confirm he is a strong defender.

This marks the second major commitment by Reds ownership in two weeks. Joey Votto agreed to terms on a ten-year, $225MM extension eight days ago.

The Expos selected Phillips in the second round of the 1999 draft and sent him to Cleveland along with Cliff Lee and Grady Sizemore for Bartolo Colon in 2002. Phillips didn't emerge as a star until the Indians traded him to Cincinnati four years later.

The Rangers agreed to a five-year, $75MM extension with second baseman Ian Kinsler last night. Both Kinsler and Phillips approached Chase Utley's record $85MM contract for second basemen without establishing a new record. That challenge falls to Robinson Cano of the Yankees.

Bowden first reported the agreement and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports added detail. Photo courtesy of US Presswire.

Phillips, Reds Progress Toward Extension

The Reds have agreed in principle to a six-year, $72.5MM extension with Brandon Phillips, Jim Bowden of and MLB Network Radio reports (Twitter links). However, the agreement is pending approval from ownership and the deal remains unconfirmed.

The Reds are prepared to guarantee six years and $72.5MM, Bowden writes. The former Reds GM predicts the sides will complete a deal within 24 hours. Ian Kinsler’s recent deal may figure in as a comparable contract.

Phillips would be eligible for free agency following the 2012 season if the Reds don't lock him up. The ACES client posted a .300/.353/.457 line with 18 home runs and 38 doubles in 675 plate appearances last year. He won his third Gold Glove in 2011, and advanced assessments of his fielding confirm he is a strong defender.

Reds Notes: Votto, Phillips, Baker

A few items of note to share out of the Queen City …

  • The Reds funded Joey Votto's big contract extension with the $25MM per year they've received in revenue sharing over the past 10 years, writes Bill Madden of the New York Daily News. We've heard whispers previously that the Reds had drawn upon shared revenues to lock up Votto, though this seems to be the first mention of such a specific sum.
  • GM Walt Jocketty said there's no updates on a potential contract extension for second baseman Brandon Phillips, tweets John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Jocketty, however, remains optimistic that a deal will get done within the next week or so, Fay adds. In case you missed it earlier this week, the Reds reportedly offered Phillips five years and $60MM, with a sixth year apparently being a stumbling block in negotiations.
  • Reds owner Bob Castellini reiterated that Votto's extension won't interfere with the team's ability to extend Phillips or manager Dusty Baker, according to Joe Kay of the Associated Press"It has no bearing on our conversations with Brandon Phillips and, hopefully, our conversations with Dusty as we go forward," Castellini said. Baker is in the final year of a two-year extension he inked after the 2010 campaign. This season marks his fifth on the Reds' bench.

Latest On Reds, Brandon Phillips

The Reds offered Brandon Phillips a five-year, $60MM contract extension for the 2012-16 seasons, Jim Bowden of ESPN and MLB Network Radio reports (Twitter link). One Reds source believes Phillips would sign if the Reds offer a sixth guaranteed season.

The Reds were already in serious discussions with Phillips when the club got sidetracked by the Joey Votto deal, Jon Heyman of reports. Cincinnati GM Walt Jocketty said yesterday that he’s optimistic about working out an extension with his second baseman within a week. Bowden heard last night that the Reds had offered Phillips a five-year deal in the $62.5-65MM range.

Quick Hits: Phillips, Kinsler, Podsednik, Moyer

Links for Thursday, as the first full day of the regular season wraps up…

  • The Reds and Rangers are working towards contract extensions with Brandon Phillips and Ian Kinsler, respectively, and ESPN's Jim Bowden says (on Twitter) there's some work left to be done on each. Phillips is expected to get $12.5-13MM annually, Kinsler $13.5-14MM.
  • Scott Podsednik will report to the Phillies' Triple-A affiliate, his agent confirmed to David Murphy of The Philadelphia Daily News. Podsednik was not technically a Major League free agent this offseason since he spent all of last year in the minors, so he was unable to opt-out of his contract at the end of Spring Training.
  • Jamie Moyer's can make $2MM in incentives op top of his $1.1MM base salary, Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports (on Twitter). The 49-year-old left-hander will open the season in the Rockies’ rotation.
  • Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright took note when Matt Cain of the Giants signed earlier in the week, Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes. "Obviously, you have to pay attention to it,"Wainwright said. "It's a tremendous deal for him." Cain obtained $112.5MM in new money from the Giants, establishing a record for right-handed pitchers.
  • Ivan Rodriguez is working out and says he's in shape, according to Jon Heyman of (Twitter link). Heyman suggests the Rays could be a fit for the veteran free agent.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.

Reds Expect To Extend Brandon Phillips

6:16pm: ESPN's Jim Bowden hears that the Reds offered Phillips a five-year deal in the "neighborhood" of $62.5-65MM (Twitter link). That is just north of Dan Uggla's five-year, $62MM contract with the Braves.

3:51pm: GM Walt Jocketty said on today's TV broadcast that he's confident the Reds will complete a contract extension with Brandon Phillips within a week, according to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer (on Twitter). The ACES client will be eligible for free agency following the 2012 season if the Reds don't lock him up.

Earlier this week it seemed unlikely that the Reds would lock Phillips up long-term. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported last week that the likely asking price for Phillips is a raise from his current $12MM salary on a four or five-year deal. Phillips posted a .300/.353/.457 line with 18 home runs and 38 doubles in 675 plate appearances last year. He won his third Gold Glove in 2011, and deserved it based on advanced assessments of his fielding.

The Reds announced a ten-year, $225MM extension for Joey Votto earlier this week.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.

Reds Notes: Votto Reaction, Phillips

Here' the latest out of the Queen City, including lots of thoughts about Joey Votto's contract extension

  • Votto has full no-trade protection for the 10 years of his extension, and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (via Twitter) notes that the no-trade clause also covers the final two years of Votto's existing contract (covering 2012-13).
  • Votto's deal is "slightly backloaded," a source tells ESPN's Jerry Crasnick (Twitter link) but doesn't included any deferred money.
  • The Reds think they still have a chance to reach an extension with Brandon Phillips, tweets Jerry Crasnick.  We heard yesterday that it was looking unlikely that Phillips and Reds would work out a new deal before the season begins.
  • It's telling that Votto and the Reds seemed to work out an major extension "in a matter of weeks" while Phillips and the club haven't been able to make much progress after a year of contract talks, writes Ken Rosenthal.  A team insider tells John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that while the Reds like their second baseman, "Phillips isn’t going to compete for the MVP every year. Votto is."
  • Also from Fay's link, he notes the differences between Votto's deal and Ken Griffey Jr.'s nine-year, $112MM deal with the Reds from 2000.  Fay feels the Reds believe they'll get a new local cable TV deal before their current agreement expires in 2016, and that the Reds' revenue streams from MLB's national TV contract and new media sources will also increase, thus allowing the team to push the payroll to around the $100MM mark.
  • Ken Rosenthal wonders if Castellini pushed Votto's deal though, a la Tigers owner Mike Illitch becoming involved in his team signing Prince Fielder.  Rosenthal also thinks Votto's extension could eventually become an albatross for the small-market Reds.
  • Cincinnati's smaller-market status, however, played a role in Votto's desire to stay in town.  The first baseman told John Fay (Twitter link) that "I'm about to sign a huge deal, John, and you're the only media I have [to] answer to."
  • In case you missed it earlier today, the Reds claimed Alfredo Simon off waivers from the Orioles.

Brandon Phillips Extension Unlikely

7:42pm: Talks between the Reds and Phillips continue following the Joey Votto extension, reports ESPN's Jim Bowden (on Twitter).

1:19pm: The Reds are nearing a long-term deal with their star first baseman, but it doesn't look like their second baseman will obtain an extension of his own this offseason. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that a deal between Brandon Phillips and the Reds is unlikely (Twitter link).

Rosenthal reported last week that the likely asking price for Phillips is a raise from his current $12MM salary on a four or five-year deal. Phillips posted a .300/.353/.457 line with 18 home runs and 38 doubles in 675 plate appearances last year. He won his third Gold Glove in 2011, and deserved it based on advanced assessments of his fielding. The 30-year-old is set to hit free agency after the 2012 season.