According to MLB Network’s Jon Morosi, the Minnesota Twins have contacted the Reds to see if closer Raisel Iglesias might be available in trade.

Here at the Nation lately, we’ve been discussing the question of whether the Reds should look to trade Raisel Iglesias. Here’s what I said in that piece:

The answer to this is the same as the answer if you replace Iglesias’ name above with any other player in the Reds organization: it depends. I’m a firm believer in the concept that no players are “untouchable,” and there are no exceptions to that rule. Do I want the Reds to trade Joey Votto or Nick Senzel or Eugenio Suarez? Well, no, of course not. But if, for example, the Reds could acquire Mike Trout for any of these players, sure the Reds should pull the trigger. Everyone has their price.

That said, I don’t see any reason the Reds should be actively shopping Raisel Iglesias. He’s an exceptionally good pitcher — even if he’s just a reliever — signed to a relatively cheap contract who will not be a free agent until 2022. He can be a valuable member of the next good Reds team. The flip side of that is that Iglesias could have significant value on the trade market, especially to a team in need of a shut-down reliever. If one of those teams comes calling, GM Dick Williams should not hesitate to trade Iglesias. But Williams should extract maximum value in any such deal. There’s no reason to trade Iglesias unless the Reds get a haul in return.

I stand by all of that. And the Twins could be an interesting trade partner.

You’ll note that, in 2017, Minnesota did exactly what the Reds are hoping to do in 2018. The Twins won 85 games and finished in second place in the AL Central division, earning a Wild Card berth in the playoffs. This happened one year after they finished 59-103.


So, right now, the Twins think they are really close to being serious contenders in the American League. I’m not suggesting that they aren’t, but it seems like a good time to extract something for them in return for a valuable player.

And Raisel Iglesias is a valuable player, depending on how you look at it. He’s certainly one of the most talented pitchers you’re likely to see. Unfortunately, his shoulder issues have seemed to dictate that he’s nothing more than a closer. So, he’s a very good closer, and that’s a position that teams have traditionally tended to overrate. If a club out there is willing to overpay for a closer, the Reds should jump on the opportunity.

When the Twins inquired about the availability of Iglesias in trade, I hope Reds GM Dick Williams said something to the effect of: “Yeah, we might be willing to trade him. But it’s going to take Stephen Gonsalves and Nick Gordon, at the very least.” (Or similar names; you get the picture.)

Stay tuned…

40 Responses

  1. old-school

    Nick gordon and a legit AAA/AA pitching prospect probably closes this deal.
    The fact the Twins drafted a top SS in 2017 as the #1 overall pick makes Gordon expendable.

  2. Still a Red

    It seems to me you would want to trade a MLB player for at least one MLB player. As good as they may become, in positions we are looking for, both Gonsalves and Gordon are still working their up the minors. Keep trading our MLBers for prospects and the rebuild will go on for ever and our only reliable reliever goes away. Don’t know if Twins would trade for one of their starters. Looking at second string, maybe Grossman (LF). Don’t really know him, looks like he may be a FA after next year, but just looking at his stats, medium avg. but he gets on base, walks, can play CF and switch hits. Add some prospects as well. OK tell me how dumb this would be, I’ll listen.

    • Dewey Roberts

      Totally agree with you. The Reds cannot continue to trade away their major league players/stars for prospects. That would simply be a recipe for a perpetual rebuild.
      Unlike some people, I don’t think the Reds are that far apart. Losing both Finnegan and Desclafani last year (and with Bailey still on the DL) guaranteed that the year would be horrible. No team can win without a decent starting rotation. There are no guarantees going forward that those three will be able to produce as starting pitchers again, but the Reds have some very promising arms. The hitting is already at a playoff level (especially if Cozart is re-signed and Senzel comes up sometime in 2018). I am definitely in favor of keeping Gennett over Peraza. The latter will never be a quality starting major leaguer in my opinion. Barnhart had proved his mettle as a catcher. Unlike many, I think Hamilton’s speed and defense are necessary for the Reds overall team, even if he is only a spot starter and late game replacement. Great teams have to have balance- Duvall, Schebler, and Winker cannot provide the defense and speed of Hamilton even if they are better with the bat.
      Now that brings us back to the starting pitchers. There are some big ifs involved here- if Bailey returns to pre-injury form, if Finnegan and Desclafani can return to effectiveness, if Castillo, Romano, Stephenson, and Mahle can continue their development— I think the Reds could be one good veteran pitcher from being a legitimate contender in 2018. I am ready for the sorting to stop (including trading our good players for prospects) and all our efforts being put into trading our prospects for players that will make the Reds a winner now. The other approach, as you rightly pointed out, only leads to perpetual rebuilding.

  3. CI3J

    Nick Gordon is interesting. However, it’s worth noting that he seems to be somewhat of a liability at SS:

    Baseball Prospectus ranked Gordon 33rd this week in its updated Top 50 prospects list, seventh among all minor-league shortstops, but Gordon’s defensive limitations likely kept the son of former big-league closer Tom “Flash” Gordon from pushing his way into the top 20.

    Baseball America, which had Gordon ranked 47th heading into the season, was more sanguine in its midseason update, moving Gordon up to 19th. That was fifth among shortstops and represented the ninth-biggest jump in the rankings among holdovers.

    A veteran scout who passed through Double-A Chattanooga earlier this season came away convinced Gordon would have to move off the position. Maybe he could end up at second or third base or even try center field, the scout surmised, but there was no way Gordon would be able to handle the varied demands of shortstop in the major leagues.

    “You know how the best fielders always seem to get the good hop?” the scout asked. “Watching Gordon, he never seemed to get the good hop. For him, it was always the in-between hop. That’s instincts. That’s footwork. That’s hands.”

    The scout shook his head.

    “For me, those things just aren’t there when I watch Nick Gordon,” the scout said.

    He sounds like the anti-Peraza: The bat is there, but he can’t play the position competently. That said, I’d trade Iggy for him and a AAA/AA pitching prospect in a heartbeat.

    • Old-school

      Good info. But…..he’s a top 5 overall pick and still in a top 20-40 overall prospect at a premium position. Haven’t seen him play and twins did draft a SS with the over all #1…reds scouting needs to do due diligence …

      But…he would be #2 reds position prospect immediately. If the reds can get a top 25 prospect at cf or SS …and a top 50 pitcher overall….that’s the kinda deal u look at.

  4. jreis

    The last thing the reds need is another shortstop. They have a young kid by the name of Hunter Greene in their system that is the shortstop of the future. If they dream about turning him into a pitcher they should wake up and apologize . He is way too athletic for that position.

    • CI3J

      Hunter Greene just turned 18. We’ll be lucky if we see him in Cincinnati by 2021.

      • Michael E

        and given the Reds slow moving farm system (maybe DW will fix that), Green will be limited to under 100 innings for years to come, and even if he is dominating, they wont’ skip levels.

        Other teams have 20 or 21 year olds come up, but Greene won’t see more than a few September innings until 2022 at the earliest…and likely not till 2023.

        I write this praying I am wrong and if he is pitching well, he is up as a 20 year old, while his arm is still fresh and young. I hope in 2019 he is throwing 150 innings..if so I might feel more confident about him arriving as a 20 or 21 year old.

    • Colorado Red

      Hunter is no longer a SS, he (the Reds) have chosen to focus on pitching.
      Also, as said in a response to this post, it will be 2021 before we see him.
      If we see him as a SS, it will be longer then that.

    • lwblogger2

      You’ve said this on just about every thread that can somehow relate to the SS position. The Reds and Greene are committed to working as a pitcher first. Maybe that doesn’t work out and he ends up back at SS but who knows? With an arm like he has and the head on his shoulders, I see the possibility for an exceptional MLB pitcher, assuming he can stay healthy. I think that’s what the Reds saw when they drafted him, with the possibility of SS as a fallback. I think you’re beating a horse that’s on his deathbed. The idea is only not totally dead because there is a chance that for whatever reason Greene fails as a pitcher. That said, he won’t be the Reds SS anytime soon, no matter what.

  5. GreatRedLegsFan

    So long Raisel, we barely knew ya’…

  6. bouwills

    Reds should be able to do better than Nick Gordon for Iglesias. Royce Lewis plus Gonsalves or just move on. Better opportunities later on.

    • Michael E

      Yep, either you get an eye-popping return, or you don’t trade him. The lead prospect should be one that has almost no flaws (a top 20 prospect or so). It should not be an SS that can’t field or an OF that can’t run and is destined to be a DH or an SP that can’t throw any strikes.

      • lwblogger2

        Nick Gordon is a top 20 prospect on a couple prospect lists

      • lwblogger2

        That said, I wouldn’t trade Iglesias for Gordon. IF I trade Inglesias, I’d want an MLB return or prospect(s) that are MLB-ready and blocked at the MLB level for some reason. We don’t want to enter a perpetual rebuilding cycle and I think you enter that cycle when you keep trading established MLB guys for prospects. This is especially true when you trade established MLB guys who are under team control at reasonable cost for multiple years.

  7. Bill

    Don’t look for anything soon, by the way DW talks. He said he wanted to wait & see what the other clubs are going to do. Maybe the Reds will get nothing for something.

  8. james garrett

    Closers are always expendable with only 4 or 5 exceptions and they close for contenders right now.Iggy should be available no question about it.

  9. WVRedlegs

    If the Reds can’t get the Twins to include Royce Lewis, they should decline. I don’t think the Twins will give up the #1 overall pick from last year. Nick Gordon was the #5 overall pick a few years ago, so that might be possible. Some have good assessments of Gordon and think he’ll stick at SS. Some do not.
    The Reds don not need any more 2B, period.
    Besides Lewis, Gordon and Gonsalves, the Twins also have RHP Fernando Romero and OF LaMonte Wade that could be of interest. Both of these finished this past season at AA. Gordon, Romero and Wade might be enough.
    Lewis and one of these other 4 would be better. Hold out for Royce Lewis.

    • ABTwinsfan

      As a Twins fan dealing Lewis would be a deal stopper. In fact I wouldn’t trade Gordon straight up much less adding Gonsalves. This has way more to do with being able to get a decent closer on the free agent market. This is by no means to belittle or down play the talent of Iggy. I see Gordon playing middle infield for the Twins, possibly second base with Dozier moving to third and Sano to first once we are out from underneath Mauers inflated catcher’s contract. Just my two cents.

  10. MichaelA

    If I am the Reds, I am looking to see if this can be spun into a three team deal. The Reds have glaring needs in CF and SS. What would the Reds need to add to the deal to address these needs? What would it take to make this a three team deal to acquire Yelich? Or a high level SS? It’s my opinion that the Reds should be looking to acquire MLB talent over prospects at this point. The nucleus that the Reds have is getting close but they need more impact bats to compete. This is “assuming” health in the rotation and a pitching prospect or 2 starts to turn the corner.

    • jveith1991

      If I was Dick Williams, I would call the Twins and see what is the best offer they would make for Iglesias. If that offer is not over-the-top, then call the Marlins and get them involved. Potentially a three-team deal with two top Twins’ prospects going to Miami, Yelich to Cincinnati, Iglesias to Minnesota, and a second lesser player from the Reds (Billy Hamilton or Adam Duvall) going to Miami.

  11. sultanofswaff

    The Dodgers/Rockies/Cubs/Astros/Cardinals/Nationals plus many others will be searching for back of the bullpen help. The best move will be to wait out the market, then let a team that was left standing in the free agent closer musical chairs game get desperate enough to overpay.

    Some of us expect the Reds to suprise the league in 2018, so it wouldn’t bother me one bit to hold onto Iglesias. This is one of those situations where we’d have to be bowled over with an offer to move him.

    • reaganspad

      May also get more for him at the trade deadline

  12. Broseph

    Unless someone overpays, you walk. This team is two years away from serious contention and Iggys value would be more for this team then when chances to close out games (two innings please) will matter.

    We don’t need JJ Hoover trying to get us a win when we’re in the middle of a wildcard/playoff race.

    Pitch Iglesias like he should be, two innings at a time (he has the control to keep the pitch count low enough) let him build more value as a longer closer option and if someone is desperate come July, then you strike.

    This team needs an outfielder, starting pitcher and a solid infielder. Not a less-power, less-aggressive (a good thing), less-glove version of BP as the big piece in a trade to the twins.

  13. IndyRedMan

    No AA prospects for me! If we’re ever going to make a run w/Votto then 2018-19 needs to be the time! I’d call Cleveland about Mike Clevenger. They never seem to really turn him loose for some reason, but a 3.11 era in 121 ip while only allowing a .211 batting average. It might take slightly more then Iggy, but he’s a star in the making!

    • Michael E

      I am okay with low A prospects IF they’re true stud prospects. They could flame out or get injured, but at least the potential is there and unquestioned.

      Now, that said, if given a choice between an 18-year old stud in low A and a 21 year old stud in AA, I’d take the 21 year old stud.

      I do NOT want a Walt Jocketty “MLB ready” haul of 25 year old players still stuck in AA or spending 3 or 4 years of mediocre play in AAA.

  14. WVRedlegs

    The Atlanta Braves may be the place to shop Iglesias. They have a loaded system and now how an new GM, Trader Alex Anthopoulos. The former Blue Jays GM makes Trader Jack McKeon look like Stand Pat Walt Jocketty.

    • Michael E

      Interesting point. Maybe we can trade Duvall and Iglesias to them. they have crap in the OF, little power and maybe feel their ready to contend. We could haul back 3 top 5 prospects perhaps?

    • Michael E

      “He was criticized for mortgaging the future for the present — an interesting charge, given he’s about to take over a rebuilding club with a loaded farm system.” — RJ Anderson, CBS Sports

      Yes, call AA and offer up Iglesias and another piece for four of their top 10 prospects. Works for me.

  15. TR

    Unless it’s a real haul, I would hold on to Iglesias. Even as a closer he’s a top-flight pitcher. The Reds want to make the playoffs and beyond while Joey Votto is still in his best years. So I say, if a trade is made for Iggy, easy on the prospects and go for ML ready player(s).

  16. Tom

    I think the Reds can be very close to contending if the 4 rookie starting pitchers from last year contiiie progressing and we get a decent year out of a combo of Bailey, Disco, and Finegan. My guess is that Finegan goes to the bullpen, creating a back end of Iggy, Finny, Lorenan, and Peralta – not too shabby.

    Now, my question on trading Iggy is this: what holes can he plugged with a trade that are of greater value than losing Iggy? I can’t think of many.

    The Reds, as a small market team, need to take some risks. There’s a risk the 4 rookie starting pitchers flame out. There’s a risk that a four man outfield rotation doesn’t pan out. There’s a risk Peraza, young as he is, doesn’t figure it out at the plate. But there is also a strong possibility that some of these risks become strengths. If that is the case, I don’t want Iggy to go anywhere unless the return haul is obscene.

  17. james garrett

    The starts must align perfectly for the Reds to contend in 2018 and anything is possible but in their case not probable.To turn down a trade for Iggy solely based on we think we can would be foolish.My guess is we get more at the trade dead line because there is always some who think they can and need a closer to solidify the back end of their pen.Playoff baseball is all about get me to the 5th inning and turn it over to the pen.This year was no exception.

  18. scottya

    It needs to be a pretty good haul for sure. We need a shortstop who has a really solid glove. Not sure if Gordon is that?

  19. The Duke

    Unless it’s an “overpay”, then just hold onto him. 4 years of control and one of the better relief pitchers in all of baseball. Unless there is a haul, turn it down. If the Twins want Iglesias to compete now, go after their future assets. Royce Lewis, Alex Kiriloff, and Blayne Enlow.

  20. doofus

    The primary return should be a major league player or MLB ready prospect plus 1 or 2 other players. Pitchers and up the middle players only.

  21. Tom Mitsoff

    Some people are suggesting prospects for Iglesias. Let me put another idea out there. Iglesias is one of the best at his position (closer) and has four years of control remaining. Let the bidding start at standout MLB players (at any position other than first base and catcher) who likewise have four years of control remaining. I don’t have that list, and I understand that he’s one pitch away from blowing out a shoulder or elbow. Generally speaking, I agree with the folks like The Duke who say it has to be an overpay. If the Nationals call, it starts with Robles. If the Astros call, how about starting with Brad Peacock?

  22. Steve Mancuso

    I agree with Tom. Iglesias has enormous value to teams who are looking for an established closer who can occasionally pitch more than one inning. And that’s an extremely valuable commodity for some teams. The Reds should be shooting for a really good player. It would have to be one of the top ten prospects in baseball.

    I like the idea of packaging Iglesias with Duvall, Hamilton, Gennett or a pitching prospect to get a good SS or CF.

  23. Still a Red

    So we have a bona fide closer through year 2021. If the Reds don’t contend by/before then, then the rebuild will obviously have failed. IInglesias IS part of the next contender. With our current rebuild, besides starting pitching (which we have lots of prospects), we need a SS (to replace Cozart, either next year or if he stays, in a year or two) and a CF that can hit and defend at a net increase to Hamilton. It doesn’t make sense to trade one component of your next contender for propects that may or may not pan out. You only trade Iglesias for a MLB ready SS and/or CF. I don’t agree with the “closers are a dime a dozen” sentiment. We have seen how easy it is to end up with a bad bull pen and how painful it is.