Though there’s been plenty of talk about the Reds’ willingness to increase payroll and their pursuit of rotation upgrades, Paul Daugherty of the Cincinnati Enquirer writes that the team isn’t likely to make any “top-tier glamorous” additions in free agency. Daugherty hears that Cincinnati may be willing to boost payroll by as much as $30MM but is looking to add a mid-rotation arm and a “middle-to-late-inning reliever.” The Reds, he opines, should be open to dealing some of their young hitters — even those who’ve reached the Majors — for pitching help, as it’s difficult to sway free-agent arms to sign up to pitch half their games at Great American Ball Park. Regardless of he means by which they choose to do so, the Reds seem determined to bolster the pitching staff this winter.
Here’s more from the NL Central…
- “Adding bullpen depth is a priority,” Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer said Wednesday at the GM Meetings in Carlsbad, Calif. (link via Bruce Levine of 670 The Score/CBS Chicago). Hoyer noted that, ideally, the Cubs would add some quality left-handed help to the relief corps, though he also indicated that the greater concern is simply in building a quality relief unit and the depth necessary to keep top arms fresh down the stretch. Levine writes that in addition to their pursuit of a left-handed bullpen arm, the Cubs are hoping to bring veteran righty Jesse Chavez back into the fold. Chavez, 35, posted a 1.15 ERA and a ridiculous 42-to-5 K/BB ratio in 39 innings for the Cubs after being acquired from the Rangers.
- The Cardinals are once again in the market for a big bat, writes Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and president of baseball operations John Mozeliak said at the GM Meetings that the current thinking is “more infield than outfield.” Goold notes that Bryce Harper would be one notable exception to that line of thinking, but the rest of the free agents the Cards currently like appear to be of the corner infield variety. Adding a third baseman or first baseman is plausible, given Matt Carpenter’s versatility. Goold adds that the trade market could present numerous alternatives, with players like Paul Goldschmidt potentially being made available on the trade market. The D-backs are reportedly open to entertaining offers for key players, and with just one year and $14.5MM remaining on his contract, it’s only natural that Goldschmidt’s name will be bandied about the rumor mill over the next few months as teams try to pry the perennial MVP candidate away from Arizona. That’s but one of many options, of course, as Goold explores at greater length in his column.
“Upgrading the bullpen is an absolute priority this offseason,” said 147 various high-ranking baseball executives…
Complacency is a killer in this business. If you’re not getting better, and you’re one of the 29 teams that didn’t win the WS, you’re just getting worse. The Cubs (Epstein) simply have no sense of urgency about their roster.
How does the word “priority” translate to “no sense of urgency” to you?
What are you talking about? The Cubs and Epstein have had more urgency and been more active every offseason for the last 4 years than every other team in the league. Get your facts straight..
This statement isn’t even remotely accurate.
Exactly, what you expect from a Western Indiana Sux fan. 4 straight playoff appearances (and counting) including 3 straight NLCS appearances and of course winning a ring and Theo & Co have remained active every single offseason and this one will be no different.
The Sux were irrelevant when they were supposedly “All In” and w/ Adam LaRoche (and his son haha) Sale and scissors, yet they somehow ended up w/ worse records than teams that were literally tanking. Now, they seem to be excited about FINALLY rebuilding, but they have the some clown front office that THOUGHT they were contenders…. Now? Even more irrelevant.
It takes more than a Baseball Prospectus subscription to build a consistent winner. Prospects are great, but there’s a reason they’re called prospects. Many have tried what the Cubs and Astros have done, but very few have succeeded.
The Sux will remain irrelevant in Chicago, in MLB as a whole, even on ESPN (haha, they still keep forgetting them and messing up their sorry stats. They literally have no choice but to operate as a small market team in spite of being in the 3rd largest market in the game. “ChiSoxCity”?!? Haha, sure, I suppose Western Indiana is a city.
Of the five NL Central teams, the Reds have the best farm system. Gonna be back to the glory days for them starting in 2021. Theo and the Brew Crew better not rest on their laurels. Gotta watch out for the Cardinals, too. They never allow themselves to sink to the we’re-really-bad level.
Finally, how much can the Yankees afford to pay Bryce Harper to be their everyday 1B for the next ten years? In that ballpark, Harper might hit 80 HR a year,
Luke Voit seems to hit dingers to right quite frequently despite being a right hander. He is the next Yankee ‘comer’.
Pow! You knocked ChiSoxCity to the canvass
Sooo…if you’re not first your last, I get that..
LOL, I wanna be Ricky Bobby when I get reincarnated as a redneck.
Vote for Trumps people then you might be a red neck
Chisox city with another clown post. Was trading for Hamels, Murphy and Chavez by a sense of urgency? They didn’t want to win?
Nlcs 2015 World Series champs 2016 nlcs 2017 . 2nd most wins in nl last year with darvish on shelf all year and Bryant Injured most of season . Added cole Hamels. Yep shame on theo cubs really struggling:-)
Care to elaborate? We know you hate the Cubs but seriously this is the best you got?
“Upgrading the bullpen is an absolute priority this offseason,” said 147 various high-ranking baseball executives…
Yes. And they also say that going into the trade deadline.
Is Will Harris a free agent? I know the Astros declined his option. He might be a solid pick up for the back end.
He still is arbitration-eligible with them hence why they declined it.
When u use the bullpen so much in the first half because the starters can’t go beyond 4-6 inings , it will ALWAYS BE A ISSUE , hopefully Hammels & Quintana can do better ( and Darvich do much much better.
Yeah it’s a very cliché statement. I think that the cubs should go after Harper. I think we could get a go-fund me page going and raise 1MM to contribute towards his next contract 😉
Goldy would be a great addition but the trade cost would be extremely high.
He is the one player I would like to see the Cardinals invest big bucks in. Matt Carpenter tends to play only 2 months of every season and blocks anybody else at 1B and batting #1. If he was traded I would shed no tears.
Cost wouldn’t be as high as most think given he’ll be a FA next year.
I am good with the Bullpen arm for the Reds, but if they are targeting a mid rotation guy they need to also try and retain Harvey. You can sign Harvey (8 – 9 M.), a Gio Gonzalez type (10 – 13 M.), and a good bullpen (4 – 5 M.)arm for 30 million. They are shedding paryroll, Mesoraco 13 M. this year, and Bailey 23 M. next year. If they trade Hamilton 5 M., and trade Gennett 11 M, they will be getting rid of the 2 biggest salary increases for 19.
Does anyone else feel like the Cubs have just a lot of mediocre to above average players and only a couple really good ones? When healthy, I’d put Rizzo and Bryant in that top tier, but I’m not ready to call Baez a top tier player until he can produce at least a .340 OBP.
Outside of that, who’s their next biggest “star?” An aging Lester? Hamels? Hendricks is good, but not great. I’m fearful that this team can be really good at best, but cannot be great like it was in 2016 when you had Lester and Arrieta in their prime, Chapman as a shutdown guy at the end, and Fowler as a high OBP guy in front of a healthy Bryant and Rizzo. I just feel like there’s a lot missing, and I think there’s going to be a lot of patchwork being done, when I think it could be wiser to take a year – not rebuild, but retool and get your plan back on track.
Top three MVP candidate and you’re going to use an arbitrary metric like OBP to downgrade him? Ok, the scourge of sabermetrics alive and well.
Right and let’s just forget that the guy has a great glove that can play all over and is a great base runner as well.
How is Báez not considered a top tier player. He’s a top 3 MVP candidate. Sure his OBP is a bit lower than you’d like, but there’s no doubt he’s one of the best players in the league.
Wrote around early August that the Cubs are spiraling down. It’s obvious.
Because of Epstein and Cub fans around the country, they get a lot of pub, and are held to a “don’t question the Cubs” standard. They spent a bunch of money on pitching last off-season. Then had to take on a $20mm/yr contract late in the year to bring in 87-year old Cole Hamels – having a renaissance – to save their season.
Excessive expansion has diluted teams talent levels, resulting in analytic front offices making roster changes 3-5 times a week, pretty much hoping to stumble on a player with a hot hand.
Overall the NL has few – if any – complete teams. The NL Central is extremely overrated.
I don’t think there is a single correct statement in that entire spiel of nonsense. I bet you even spelled your name wrong.
well, he was yelling at the clouds in early August, that much is true.
Central is over rated? produced 2 of 5 playoff teams and had a third super close?
Haha, the stupid is contagious tonight. Being a top 3 MVP candidate and gold glove runner up for a player that has yet to enter his peak years… yeah, that’s a pretty good player. Their entire core, already proven champions, no longer prospects has yet to hit their peak. 4 straight playoff runs including 3 straight NLCS appearances and of course a ring already in the bank, I think they’ll be just fine.
Theo&Co will continue to upgrade/add just as they have the last 4 offseasons. Their young, stud former MVP, their closer and their big FA SP were all out most of the year and/or dealing with nagging injuries and they still went to a one game playoff to decide the best record in the NL.
No doubt cub looking to add, but the bigger question is who has to go to make room for them as far as position players are concerned? Trade schrwaber? Cut Russell? Tough choices to make , sb interesting
i’m gonna say no, nobody else feels like a player with as much going for him as Baez is not somehow ‘top tier’ because he has one metric that’s merely average. (OBP is good, but it isn’t everything)
If Baez winds up the starting SS (which is likely), he’s automatically on the short list of best hitting SS’s in all of baseball… and he can legit play SS as well.
Not sold on Baez yet. Great glove had a good year but he needs to repeat. I’m not going to say top tier until he proves he’s not a flash in the pan. If you had to extend him today, how much would be reasonable ? Not 20 million. Not even 15.
hmm, let’s see, 20 million for a SS that’s also got a good chance to be a middle of the order bat…. you’re right, those grow on tree. just pass and wait for the next one
Baez has already hit his ceiling. Hope he can stay up there thru his prime. He’s never going to be an OBP guy but he does everything else very well.
st. louis, give patrick wisdom a chance
Wisdom may be a guy they move this offseason if they secure a veteran 3b. Their 2 top infield prospects are third baseman and should be ready in next 2 years.
I like Wisdom a lot but he went through two Rule 5 chances and nobody picked up on him. He needs more MLB seasoning and I think he has hope to be an above average 3B but it would help if he took a look at 1B too. Personally Donaldson at 3B and Goldie at 1B and Carpenter with the Marlins would make my winter just a lot happier.
I agree give wisdom chance, but he needs to be the 3b/1st sub & bat off the bench player for 2019. He is not the starter the Cards need. Need to offer Harper 325-345MM OVER 10 w/ opt out after 4&7 years & Donaldson 65MM over 3yr w/ opt out after 2yr. If they don’t take or willing to negotiate something close move on.
I like Wisdom off the bench. Get rid of Gyorko.
As a resident of Cincinnati, I wouldn’t take anything Daugherty says seriously. He mostly writes about football and when he does write about baseball, his facts are just flat out wrong.
I concur. Daugherty virtually blogs about anything that pops into his head, and sometimes that anything will be on the Reds, but even then, it’s mostly just opinion based. I don’t even know how he got the number $30 mil. I won’t believe that number till it actually come from a writer who covers the Reds exclusively.
King Felix for Homer Bailey in a change-of-scenery salary swap?
I feel that would do Bailey some good but Felix not so much
I talked to somebody who met up with Bailey in a Louisville bar during one of his rehabs. Said he never met a more swell headed idiot in his life. Totally in love with himself.
Athletes are at the bar to relax and pick up chicks. Dudes can get in a quick “hi” or “good game”, but don’t waste a player’s time. They don’t want to take selfies with a bunch of overweight bros, sign autographs, or hear them wax nostalgic about some random game they saw three years ago.
Unless it was the Blue Oyster Bar?
The person I was talking about IS a chick that he was trying to hit on. Said he is one dumb bunny.
Oh OK, I was confused by “Said he never met a more swell headed idiot in his life”, so I assumed it was a dude. That makes more sense now.
Love the Blue Oyster Bar reference.
Josh Donaldson to Cardinals confirmed, sadly no more Harper it sounds like, thanks MO for letting us fans down again…
Confirmed by whom? I find nothing out there. Please cite your source.
People like you take this seriously it’s too annoying, besides that point if they want infield help that isn’t Machado I hope it’s Donaldson, he and Cardinals have been rumors for years now, just seems like it will happen but at the same time it prolly won’t because MO doesn’t spend money.
Yes they tried, I know Stanton wasn’t MO’s fault but, they could have kept Pujols, Heyward, and Price as you stated but they came second to each one because they didn’t want to spend more money, which now I look back and I’m glad they didn’t but it shows that MO always comes second to other teams when it comes to signing big name players.
If they had kept Pujols they would be in last place for the past 3 seasons.
Braves sign Brantley for a couple of years for around 13 mil a year.
Trade Riley, Soroka, and alex jackson for JT
sign some bullpen arms in FA
allow young pictures to develop and see who is for real on rotation
trade for a veteran starter with postseason experience at trade deadline if needed
stan lee the manly
No way that’s enough to get Realmuto
then allard or something
we will be set
If they just get a mid rotation arm and a solid reliever, that leaves, at minimum, probably $10-15M to spend if they have $30M total to spend. In any case, getting just those two players would probably be considered a failure of an offseason by most fans given what the reds have been saying all along
I agree…They’ll spend some money for sure, but I’m thinking they end up making a big trade involving minor league talent, that’ll be their big off season move.
I agree to giving Wisdom a chance. But to waste money on a guys like Harper and Donaldson would be be stupidest decision ever made. Harper isn’t worth 3 million a year. Harper has not shown the respect towards baseball to deserve to wear the birds on the bat and his defense was worse than everyone they stuck out in right field put together. I wouldn’t give Donaldson the league minimum. He has not shown he can stay healthy his past few years. So why waste money and overpay for 2 guys that won’t make us better. The Cardinals have plenty of offensive options, what they need are defensive upgrades. As a die hard redbird fan I would much rather them wait until next year and go after Arenado because he would be a legitimate upgrade at a much more reasonable price. That would also allow them to more wiggle room to possibly add Britton or Miller this year.
what on earth makes you think Arenado’s going to get much less per season than Harper will in free agency? He might not get the contract length, but nothing about his price tag is going look ‘reasonable’
Reading some of the opinions this off-season I wanted to say this. With what they have done if the Cubs would re-sign Chavez and sign a quality left reliver or two I would actually have at least some faith in our roster. If we get a healthy Kris Bryant and a rebound from Contreras those missing numbers alone would account for signing a hitter. Rizzo is going to be Rizzo. A slump year from him is 25 100. Zobrist if healthy will not have forgotten how to hit and be a solid, versatile ballplayer. As frustrating as it is we are going to watch Heyward play good defense and hope he can somehow finally become the hitter he once was believed to be. Baez is indeed a top tier player. Barring injury at this stage of his career I seriously doubt if he takes steps backwards the next few seasons. What folks seem to forget about him and our other trio of outfielders Shwarbs, Happ and Almora is that they are all still very young, inexperienced and for the most part have learned at the major league level. Shwarb showed last year he will work to improve his game. Almora and Happ are solid, versatile players who may have experienced a “sophomore jinx” of sorts. I would bet for all three of these guys they are going to use the experience from last year and work and concentrate on improving their production from last year and I don’t see any of those players regressing either. We have all seen the talent but most the time guys need a good three or so years in the bigs to adjust, be adjusted to and then adjust some more before they live up to their full potential. I honestly believe if retained all three of those guys are going to improve their numbers at the plate. We could even possibly see a resurgent Addison Russell next year to boot. If Russell indeed comes back with him, La Stella, Bote and possibly a quality back-up Catcher picked up this off-season we have the makings of a deep quality bench. If we are not going to sign the big fish Bryce Harper then I think we should give our cord another year. These guys are talented, versatile and are a team together. They are our team. They won us a World Series after 108 years. Several of them slumped during the second half and KB was hurt then recovering from being hurt. Besides minor tweaking to the bullpen and the bench if we can’t afford Bryce than why do anything? This is baseball and things like the second half of last year just happen and the Cubs are far from the only team it ever happened to. That is what was so special about 16. Sure a team must be good enough to put itself in position but just being the best team never means a World Series. Even the best teams need a little luck, a few bloop hits, and to get hot at the right time to win it all. Our guys just didn’t get the breaks at the right times last year. They never were able to just click together with the consistency of 16. There is no reason to believe they can’t or won’t next year. They have just about as good a chance of doing it as any of about the 6-8 truly elite teams in MLB. We have seen them do it. We should be out on Machado anyway. He does not fit in with the attitude this team wants to put forth. If we can’t have Harper then I say I would rather see us go with our core another year instead of dumping them off. With a break or two we can be sure that this team with minor tweaking can bring home championships.
Mozeliak is up to his old tricks. 3 years of bragging about getting impact bats or pitchers. It might as well have been 30 years. Plus, if his history repeats its self, after the season tickets are sold, he’ll pick up low hanging fruit at multiple years and high salaries that will be on the disabled list most of the year.
Yep, followed by news conference of double talk of not answering any questions
Reds could sign Dallas Keuchel and Wade Miley and possibly Trevor Cahill for around 30-35 mil and be competitive. There’s no need to go out and get bullpen help.
Agreed, but they need more than one of those pitchers. Hope they dump B. Hamilton somehow, tired of his act, I see Senzel in center.