The Reds have claimed first baseman/DH Kennys Vargas off waivers from the Twins, per an announcement from the Minnesota organization. He had been designated for assignment recently.
It’s a bit difficult to see how Vargas will fit into the Cincinnati organization’s plans at first glance. He’s out of options and limited on a National League roster to pinch-hitting or playing first base, where Joey Votto is an everyday presence.
Unless there’s some unknown issue that would warrant the move, it could be that the Reds are simply utilizing their waiver position to grab a player they like but won’t carry on their active roster. Vargas could be traded to a team further down the priority line — just four teams are higher than the Reds at present — or put back on waivers in hopes that he’ll clear and can be stashed at Triple-A.
All indications have been that the Twins anticipated another organization claiming Vargas, despite the fact that a trade could not be sorted out. It seems there’s some optimism around the league for the 27-year-old switch-hitter.
Though Vargas has not yet shown that he can be a consistent on-base threat at the game’s highest level, with a .311 OBP in 859 career plate appearances, though he has drawn tons of walks in the upper minors. Vargas isn’t exactly a prodigious home run hitter but has shown good power output both at Triple-A and in the majors (.185 ISO) and perhaps has some more in the tank if he can tap into his raw strength.
*The initial version of this post incorrectly suggested that American League teams all passed on a chance to claim Vargas. Outright waiver priority is determined by winning percentage, lowest first, without reference to league except to break a tie in recor.
Maybe he can play shortstop if Peraza continues to struggle
No way can he play short.
Wow Vargas can’t play short? Thanks for the update
Vargas can too play short……just not very well. I can play short too…..just not as well as Vargas… 🙂
They may not be saying it at this moment sending him down to play second, but senzel will be the shortstop come July
If not earlier to challenge acuna for ROY
Let’s hope so!!
Not very likely. The plan is to play him at first. Move Votto to 3b. Suarez to LF. Hamilton to SS. Lorenzen to CF. Trade Duvall, Schebler and Winker to get Eric Jugilero back. Are you still reading this?
Haha that will never happen
Doubtful, I think they are satisfied with Hamilton’s defense in centerfield.
With your wicked sense of humor, you’d make an excellent GM.
Nah, they will just stretch everyone out for the rotation. Can’t be worse than last year.
He looks like Jordan Peele from the Key & Peele “slapass” baseball player skit.
I;m guessing they will send him back through waivers and hope he clears and stash him in AAA.. No way he gets put on the 25 man as only a PH option. The crazy option is Votto waiving his NTC and is heading out of town lolol. Why did Minn. let him go.. stats dont look horrible.
Joe Mauer, Logan Morrison, Robbie Grossman and Miguel Sano already are the 1B/DH.
Sano’s a third baseman, although they are still pretty set at 1B regardless of that fact
Sucks to see him go. As a twins fan, I was hoping for the second coming of David Ortiz. He just never did great things consistently. Doesn’t make sense for a NL team to get him. He’s a DH.
Second coming of Adam Brett Walker, without the huge minor league power numbers.
He PLAYS third base. That doesn’t make him a third baseman. (Once upon a time Harmon Killebrew played 3B -and LF, 2B, 1B & DH) He spends a bit of time at 1B as a RH bat platoon substitute for Mauer with Escobar taking over Third.. Have you seen Sano’s physique? He is closer to Pablo Sandoval than Brooks Robinson. He is not a long term solution at 3B. Remember, he was tried – and failed miserably at RF so Trevor Plouffe could play 3B.
Steaky hitter with zero versatility and bats from the wrong side of the plate for the twins.
He’s a switch hitter.
Are we talking about Vargas or Sano?
Knowing Cincy, he’s probably already back on the wire. He could make sense for Baltimore, Colorado, Seattle maybe White Sox or Mets.
Also gotta remember Jesus Aguilar, another quality bat, who’s probably better, will be on the move later this week.
Doesn’t seem to be a fit. Votto plays nearly everyday and Vargas barely qualifies as a 1b so he isn’t covering elsewhere.
While I don’t think there is room with every team going to 13 man pitching staffs it wouldn’t be the worst thing to have a guy on the bench that could hit a bit.
I thought waivers went by league. Didn’t Vargas have to get bypassed by every AL team for the Reds to get him? Or is that only for August trade waivers.
Different kind of waivers.
Mill City Mavs
Always liked him in MN. Never got a chance to play a full season which I don’t see happening with the reds either.. very inconsistent but man the power is real. That guy sends baseballs into orbit when he connects. Does not belong on a NL team though.. should be an everyday DH somewhere.
Hard to be consistent when he closes his eyes when he swings. Great fun to watch during BP, though.
Guy always struck me as someone who is best served hitting bombs in Japan.
Votto has surrendered his NTC and is heading to Toronto for Vlad Jr., Clippard and two other prospects
no honestly, assuming he sticks on the roster, I’m betting this move has more implications for the role of Hamilton, using him more off the bench and keeping Duvall, Schebler, and Winker the starting OF.. I know the two subjects aren’t directly related, but having Vargas, Hamilton, Revere, hopefully Dixon and probably Pennington (yay.) makes for a pretty well rounded bench
Unless he is kept as a sometime platoon for Votto and a pinch hitter, the Reds will try to DFA him off the 40, hope he isn’t claimed and stash him at AAA. Although at his published weight of 272 pounds, the Bengals may have interest.
If by “sometimes platoon” do you mean the 2 or so games Votto won’t start this year? I’m fairly sure they could fill those 2 starts with someone else able to provide a little additional value in the other 160 games.