Day Three of the Winter Meetings in Orlando. Check here throughout the day for news, rumors and related developments.

8 am: Boomlet in reporting about the organization’s efforts to convince Japanese 2-way phenom Shohei Ohtani to become a Red. Zach Buchanan reports on the pitch materials and process the Reds went through. Mark Sheldon’s story contains a back-and-forth with Dick Williams about it. You might find this article from Evan Drellich, a beat writer covering the Boston Red Sox, interesting. Drellich blasts Red Sox President Dave Dombrowski for not taking a personal interest in their team’s campaign for Ohtani. Comparison made to Dick Williams.

How do you view the time and effort the Reds devoted to the pursuit of Ohtani? Glad to see your team shooting for all the best players? Or a waste of time on an unrealistic pursuit?

10:30 am: Take the time to watch this interview with Dick Williams. He covers a wide range of topics including the Reds goals in Orlando, Joey Votto’s future with the organization, acquiring Scooter Gennett and Luis Castillo last year, how the Reds plan to handle Raisel Iglesias, Jesse Winker and Hunter Greene. In answer to a question about Zack Cozart, Williams says the Reds are committed to playing Jose Peraza at shortstop. The Reds President and GM points to 2019 for when fans can expect the Reds to be major buyers.

10:45 am: Seems like there’s a pretty active market for second baseman. Still haven’t seen Scooter Gennett’s name mentioned in any of the speculative lists of available players.

10:55 am: Not sure about this one. There’s a story from Toronto blogger Brendan Panikkar that the Blue Jays have interest in Adam Duvall. It refers to a report from Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated, but there’s no reference link to Verducci in the story, and I can’t find original writing from Verducci about Duvall.

11:05 am: The market for relievers continues to be extremely strong, with a couple more pricey free agent signings this morning. In that context, Raisel Iglesias is uber-valuable. Hope Reds keep an open mind about trading him for a big return. Reds are pointing toward 2019 for contending. Iglesias’ value relatively wasted pitching for the Reds. Dick Williams praises Bryan Price for his “creative” uses of Iglesias, including multiple innings. But that added up to only 76 IP last year. That’s about 10 innings above SOP for traditional closers. Yes, Iglesias would be around in 2019 and beyond. But lots of pitchers can close. No one thought of Iglesias as the future closer when Aroldis Chapman was with the Reds.

1:05 pm: Reports the Cardinals have traded for Marlins outfielder Marcell Ozuna. He’s the LF that edged out Adam Duvall for the Gold Glove Award last year. Ozuna (27) hit .312/376/.598, 37 homers, wRC+ of 142 last year. Two years of team control for the Cardinals.

Impact on the Reds? Maybe Miami will now get about trading — here’s your daily RN mention — Christian Yelich.

Meanwhile, the new Marlins ownership is wrecking their team. Why spend $1.2 billion on a major league franchise only to sell off all its parts and destroy goodwill with fans right out of the gate? An ownership group willing to spend that much to buy it ought to be able to swing a $100 million payroll.

3:15 pm: Zzzz … Things a little slow for the Reds at the Winter Meetings right now. So slow, I’m reposting two tweets by Grant Freking about the package he would offer Marlins for Christian Yelich.

“Gut says Reds will get serious about Yelich if they can exclude Greene, Senzel, Castillo and Winker. Best guess at what a Yelich trade could look take: Two of Mahle/Romano/Stephenson/Garrett + Trammell + Shed Long + piece like Gutierrez/Downs/Santillan/Siri. … Would be a massive price to pay, but All-Star caliber, 26-year-old CFs with only $58.25M owed from 2018-2022 don’t come around often.”

3:25 pm: Now lots of reports like this one saying Marlins have pulled Christian Yelich off the table and want to build their team around him. That’s of course, what they’d say if it’s true or if the opposite of it is true.

3:30 pm: Was in my car listening to MLB Radio this afternoon. They were interviewing Cardinals manager Mike Matheny. I know Cardinals fans have issues with Matheny. But he was going on about the importance of having a leadoff hitter (Matt Carpenter) with a really high on-base percentage and also had power. And all I could think about was how the Reds have tolerated the mediocrity and ineptness inherent in the notion that what the leadoff hitter needs to be able to do is run fast. It made me so furious I struggled to keep my car on the road.

3:50 pm: Seriously, this Yelich thing is a South Beach soap opera. Jon Heyman:

4:10 pm: And the Marlins handling the Yelich situation this way, this publicly, will seriously undermine their negotiating position. Of course Christian Yelich will want to leave now that Miami has traded away all his friends. If given the choice, he’ll want to play for a team that isn’t in the process of destroying itself. So then, when the Marlins say they’re open to dealing Yelich, teams will know that the CF wants to leave. The Marlins are really bad at this. Amateur hour.

4:50 pm: Ugh.

Here’s hoping Cotillo’s source is Tommy Flanagan or Gallardo’s agent. If the Reds sign Yovani Gallardo to a major league contract, I’m gonna pound my head on the desk until my forehead bleeds. There is NOTHING in Gallardo’s stats from the past two seasons that gives a shred of hope. He’s Jason Marquis only worse. Maybe the Reds think Gallardo’s pursuit of the record for giving up the most home runs in a year would bring fans to GABP … yeah, that’s the ticket.

5:15 pm: Tune in next hour for the The Young and The Restless, the Miami Marlins Soap Opera. Watch as they backfill their disastrous negotiating position for Christian Yelich.

What a joke. And you thought only certain Redleg Nation writers had an unhealthy preoccupation with Christian Yelich.

5:30 pm: Zach Buchanan’s latest reporting on where the Reds-Giants talks on Billy Hamilton stand.

5:40 pm: Aack. Reds may value Iglesias too much and scaring off deals. OTOH, maybe this is still just negotiating with the help of Jon Heyman. At least good to hear teams are asking.

7:15 pm: According to Joel Sherman of the NY Post, the LA Angels are acquiring 2B Ian Kinsler from the Tigers. the Angels were one of the teams that Scooter Gennett might have fit with. Not now. (This is the last report of the day from me unless something big breaks. Tomorrow is the final day of the winter meetings.)

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Join the conversation! 134 Comments

  1. If they will be major buyers in 2019, does that mean fire sale now to free up money?

    • The big contracts they have (Votto, Bailey, Mesoraco) aren’t tradable even should they be so inclined. There may be some money to be saved if they go on and trade Hamilton and Scooter who are second year arb guys; but that’s about it.

      • I don’t want to trade Votto, but surely he’s tradable. Agree on Bailey and Mesoraco.

        • Depends how much the Reds would be willing to eat on Votto and how little they’d take in return, just like with Stanton. And also just like with Stanton, JV has full no trade protection.

          • He is not overpriced at this time.
            I think there would be a lot of takes for most of his salary.
            I also, do not think he wants to leave.
            So, that is a non-starter.

        • He is NOT tradeable because he will not wave his NTC. Votto has made that painfully clear. Why anyone even mentions trading him is silly. The man wants to be here and has FULL control over even initiating trade proceedings.

          It’s not going to happen. Good for Joey for being happy to be a Red, thick or then.

  2. I didn’t read any of the info we presented Ohtanhi (fyi). I see no reason not to spend the time to give our best to attempt to get Ohtani. We have plenty of folks in the FO that can assist and put together the information that was given to Ohtani.

    Imagine what some would say if we didn’t spend time making a reasoned appeal to get Ohtani!

    • I agree. It’s not like this took away from some other work to land the best player ever. They’d have been in the front office eating donuts and lamenting the high costs of any player that they had hoped to sign cheaply.

      I would have been pissed off if the Reds had said, “We don’t feel that convincing Ohtani to sign with us is worth the effort, so we declined to put in any time on this project” Which would mean, we’re lazy as crap and might have to work to improve the franchise, so we decided playing games on our PC was better use of time and Castellini’s money.

      I am glad to see any time the Reds TRY to get a good player. It sure beats the times we invited 20 sucky retread pitchers to spring training every year under Bowden trying to cobble together a rotation that wasn’t the worst in baseball.

  3. Business as usual for the Reds … crickets

    • SOS, just a different day.
      Williams should be in the fertilizer business with all that horse manure he is shoveling on to the fans.

      • This is not the Reds window of contention. Every team goes through rebuilds at this point if your team name isn’t Dodgers, Yankees, and Red Sox. So just have a little patience, Dick does not seem to be Uncle Walt 2.0 and I think he is looking to extract the most value out of his players if possible. If come 2019 and the Reds have done absolutely nothing to change the roster, let your frustrations out then.

        • 93 93 93….temperature in Miami and Reds losses per season. We’re sick of it? Be patient? Constructive? Do you think this blog influences anything? SOmetimes it just feels good to vent! Cubs and Cards are always actively improving while we do nothing.

          • Yeah. What Indy said.

          • News flash here, you cannot win all the time. Reds had a time of contention before and barely missed out on getting to that WS. IThe Reds are going to play above .500 ball again, and I believe pretty soon. Just look at the Astros, they had to bide their time for such a long period and look how stacked that team is heading into next year. Do you want a team that is just barely good enough to get into a WC game in 2018? Or do you want a team that can consistently make the playoffs for 3-4 years with young controllable talent.

        • Agree with Redleggingfordayz. DW seems to be trying to get max value from the players we really need to trade and there have to be some big time discussions for someone to ask for Senzel (who we should not trade).

          I believe we are on the major uptick with our new pitchers developing and the abundance of outfielders and valuable second baseman we have.

        • The FO has been spewing the wait until year “20XX” manure since 2013. They did nothing to reinforce the 2010, 2012 and 2013 rosters when they made brief post-season appearances.

          This front office has cried “Wolf” too many times to be believed now.

        • Who are the “Einsteins” in the front office that signed Joey Votto, arguably one of the greatest hitters of all time” to his present contract if they were not going to build a team around him to contend for a title within his effective years?

          Each year they drag their feet, throwing out the same lame-assed bromides as to why they can’t do anything or more likely will not do anything.

          JV is not getting any younger Red’s fans.

          • They signed Joey in 2012 because they thought they were actually going to contend at the time(they had a pretty solid set of starters). Injuries beset them and their lack of depth showed, which is basically what started this whole rebuild to begin with.

    • While it would be refreshing to see the Reds be the quick actors at winter meetings for a change, I am also glad to see they aren’t taking any crappy deal to move a few people and make news.

      That Williams is scaring off Iglesias suitors with asking prices is good and bad. Good that he values him highly enough to work on a pristine return, but I hope it doesn’t mean it’s so wildly inflated that he is simply trying to not trade Iglesias without saying it. I hope it’s not the latter. You know, I will trade you Iglesias for Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and George Springer. Oh, that’s too high a price? Darn, really wanted to move Iglesias.

  4. That was a great interview though it would have been good for them to have that attitude going in to 2017. Or maybe their rebuild program and sorting was always going to be a year longer than ours

    For those of us who held out hope for Zack, glad we new ya

    I like his talk of using 4 outfielders while actively listening to trades on 3 of them.

    I love his comments on Votto

  5. Very disappointing hearing Williams say 2019 instead of 2018. He has the pieces to make 2018 roster a formidable one. He just doesn’t have the moxy or the courage to be bold.
    He put all his eggs in the Ohtani basket and came away with nothing. While he was distracted by the Ohtani presentation package, the Cardinals stole a pitching target out from under his nose. They should have been able to do two things at the same time, but evidently he cannot.
    This means more of the Stand Pat Jocketty model of inefficient roster building.
    This means no Christian Yelich.
    This means more Peraza and Hamilton in the same lineup.
    This means no Scooter trade.
    This means more losing in 2018. Typical Cincinnati Reds front office. Very typical.

    • It wouldn’t be RLN without an obligatory reference to Christian Yelich.

      • Yelich will hill hit 121 HR and have a 2.000 OBP if the reds would just hurry up and trade for him

        • The Angles are not going to trade him.
          Top 3 in the organization should not be enough.

      • LOL.

        Well played, BIG5ED…and true.

      • Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich, Christian Yelich!

        Or would you rather the Red’s pursue a Chad Mottola clone?

        • I posted below that if the Reds could land Yelich, great.

          But, he is a Top 50 MLB player by WAR, with a contract that is going to produce loads of surplus $ value over the next few years.

          Teams with much bigger checkbooks, and are in their contention windows in 2018, would covet that type of player as well.

          The odds of the Reds having and parting with what Miami would want, and outbidding other teams for Yelich is what…..5%, at most? Probably less than that.

          Let’s mention him in every BTL comment section going forward, if that is what makes RLN readers happy. I just would not count on him playing for Cincinnati in 2018.

    • “He put all his eggs in the Ohtani basket and came away with nothing.”

      What? My goodness, how silly does that sound. They did exactly what they should have, put in a few man hours to fill out a questionaire and try and convince a high level, cheap talent to come to Cincy.

      It was NOT “all his eggs”. The Reds are operating business as usual right now, if it were all the eggs, they’d be done for the off-season. I don’t even understand your stance. It was a simple process and they used time (nothing else) that would have been spent in some meetings on trivial business stuff, like enough resin bags, clean bases for starting the season, etc.

      I would have been extremely pissed had the Reds declined to try and sway Ohtani.

  6. So long Zack! The impetus to rid the lineup of Hamilton is that much more pressing.

  7. My heart sank a little when I read that Williams is committed to playing Peraza at Shortstop.

    So, Cozart’s not coming back in other words and they’re handing over the position to a mediocre player. I’m beginning not to care for Williams.

    • It sounded like GM speak to me. Who knows we may have jurickson profar by the end of the week and let the two of them figure out if either can develop into their potential.

    • Peraza is still young enough to become above average. We know he can make contact, other than a few months last year, he has his whole career. He is fast. He can’t walk much right now, but that can improve too, even if just a little.

      As for Cozart, I do NOT want to spend any significant money on a so-so range SS that cant’ stay healthy. Sorry. Don’t see the love there. We need Meso contract to fall off the books and Bailey, we don’t need to add another broken down piece that becomes nearly untradeable.

      • Michael E, I don’t care for Peraza. Even if he does become above average I won’t care for him. Just don’t care for his type of player. I’ll be happy that he’s doing well for the club (IF he does well) but I won’t care for him and would not be heartbroken if he ever left the reds via trade or whatever.

      • So-so range SS? Zack had a great year in 2017. No one has great range while nursing a quad injury.” Another broken down piece that becomes nearly untradeable”, like BP last year whom the Reds gave away to make room for Hererra. Unfortunately Dilson still wasn’t healthy enough to occupy the $16M or so hole made for him which was eventually taken over by a waiver claim acquisition- Scooter Gennett. All the Reds needed to do was make the QO for Cozart. If he turned it down (like the other 9 guys did) the Reds get a draft pick . If he accepted the QO, the Reds got Zack for 1 additional year at market value. What they did is once again, do nothing & get nothing. And for about the same amount of money that they gave away 1 year ago (to Atlanta) with BP.

  8. I’m happy with some of the things he said, and greatly disappointed in other things. Glad Votto is committed to being a Red for life. Disappointed in Peraza and Hamilton probably batting 1-2 in the lineup (again). You cannot have 2 such weak hitting players in the lineup and be competitive.
    No Yelich
    No Ozuna
    No big (or small) moves
    Yes to Hamilton and Peraza in the lineup.
    2018 is going to look a lot like 2017, except for the young pitchers to make some strides (hopefully).

    With the better pitching in 2018, maybe we win 75 games instead of 68. 🙁

  9. ‘This time next year, we will be buyers’.
    I hope he means this. And I hope he’s correct.

    BUT…I swear the Reds aren’t that far off. A couple small moves and they could be in contention this year.

    • They may well be in contention this year if enough of the young pitchers come around. Older ones, too, I guess.

  10. Dick Williams is Mr. Passive at a time when the Reds need an aggressive go-getter for a GM.
    I hope the fans write off the 2018 season as another loser, just like Reds GM Dick Williams is doing.
    Hard to get invested in a do-nothing GM. Kick the can down the road to 2019. Going to be a lot of excitement for fans to go out and buy season ticket packages on this crap news.
    If this is going to be Williams’ approach, I hope the Reds barely average 10,000 fans a game in 2018. While Williams stands pat, Reds fans should stay home in 2018. More so than in 2016 and 2017.
    However, the Reds beat writers will continue to kiss the GM’s feet so as to get “inside scoop” looks inside the bubble at totally worthless documents.
    No accountability.
    The to-do list at the Winter Meetings was lengthy. Yet Reds GM Dick Williams cannot even check one box as done. Not one. Well correct that. He is doing one thing. Williams is running off more and more Reds fans.
    I have wanted to stick with the Reds through all the thick and thin. But the times, they are getting anorexicly thin with Williams as GM. Another 90 loss season in store for 2018.
    Yippee. Dick Williams for Baseball Executive of the Year.

    • Does RLN need help moderating comments?

      • The only person getting edited today so far is you. Please keep your comments focused on the Reds, not other commenters. Notice how no one else at the site addresses other people here or their opinions personally? Like it or not, that’s the site guideline. Comment about the Reds, not individuals. While I don’t share the feeling of huge frustration with the Reds right now, I understand the legitimacy of that view.

        • LOL. WV can totally fill up this whole thread with posts that are beyond negative, all with almost no substance, facts, or context. And yet I am the one getting edited for calling him on it. Unreal.

          • It isn’t about being negative. It’s being personal. It isn’t your job to police the other comments. If you can’t live with limiting your comments to being about the Reds, you’ll have to find another place to comment. Profanity is also against the site guidelines.

          • I guess his attacks on the GM aren’t personal enough for you. I love that double standard though. You have lost a fan and a reader which I am sure means nothing to you guys since you have grown much larger. Enjoy!

    • I hear the Yankees are looking for some new fans

  11. A little sanity? A little patience? It’s December 13th, not Opening Day.

    • The lack of sanity is evident in the FO when they sign one of greatest hitters of all time to a monster, no-trade-clause contract and do nothing for 8 years to significantly improve the roster around him.

      Rosters are built by drafting talent, making smart FA signings and through swinging adroit trades. In the last two years they seem to have accomplished the first task. They continue to fail at the latter two elements.

      • The Reds do not have the resources to contend every year. DW came into a team that was already going into a rebuild phase. Why would you try and rush that at this point? We are still waiting for quite a few prospects to develop. Winker and Senzel need a full year of MLB action to make sure they are the future. They are waiting for Mes and Bailey contracts to be off the books so they can sign those FA’s you are talking about. There is still so much sorting to do in the organization that they would be silly to try and contend now. Also I am confused, pretty sure DW completed one of the most heralded trades last year in Dan Straily for Luis Castillo?

        PS: JV is going to age better than most and barring any injuries, he will be fine in 2 years, albeit perhaps not as great.

  12. These 3 pitchers are on the Reds radar?? What a crock of manure this is. This is a front office travesty. GM malfeasance at its worst!!!

    https://www.cincinnati.com/story/sports/mlb/reds/2017/12/13/reds-casting-wide-net-their-pitching-search/947901001/

    • I wouldn’t mind a deal for Hernandez. Unfortunately, his asking price will be much higher now that all these other relievers have signed for big money. Were the Reds napping???

      I think we can safely say the Cubs misjudged the market on Hector Rondon. $6mil in arbritration for his performance is now below market value. The Reds should be in on him.

    • GM speak for we will be bottom-feeding again.

  13. I am not sure why people would be down on Dick Williams already.

    The way MLB teams are run, if you are not going to contend, you don’t make big free agent splashes.

    And, in a non-contention season like 2018, why pay for Cozart, when instead you give cost-controlled Peraza a (final?) shot at showing he can stick on the Reds roster.

    If Williams can land Yelich in a trade, great. But, there will be fierce competition for him. Besides, there is talent (Ervin) that needs to see the field and be “sorted”.

    Not trading away Iglesias now may end up being a missed opportunity, but the right offer has to come along. No need to sell low in the winter. He could be dealt anytime in 2018, and we know pitching injuries will occur across the league.

    By going on the record with 2019, Williams can be better judged from now on how he sets up the Reds to start the contention window then.

    • What he said.

    • 100% truth

      The Astros and Cubs stuck to their “Process” and they have won the last two WS’s. I get that to some degree you have to cater to the fans, but the best way to get butts in seats is to just win.

    • I don’t believe I’ve read on this board where there is a great ground-swell to sign free agents.

      There will always be competition to land a Yelich-type player. That doesn’t excuse the fact that our FO shouldn’t go after him hard. The Red’s have the talent to deal for Yelich. There, I wrote Yelich again.

      Ervin is another wasted 1st round pick from the Jocko years. See Howard and Travieso (sp?), but wait the Red’s can’t go after Yelich, because there will be a lot of competition for him so we have to settle for Ervin?

      We get it that the right players must be had for Iglesias, no need for the tutorial. His value is very high right NOW. You’re correct, pitching injuries occur. You have to admit there is no reason for a closer on a 95+ losing team or no benefit of having an injured closer when you could have dealt him for a haul at the Winter Meetings to make your roster even more formidable,

      But what the heck do we know, we’re just the obsessive fans who expect our FO to do more than just count the number of rodent ears in the hotel lobby at the Winter Meetings.

      • The Howard draft was a big head-scratcher for me. Ervin, I thought was a bit of a reach but I wouldn’t call him a wasted pick. I think his floor is probably as a 4th or 5th OF. He can man all 3 OF positions adequately, including CF as long as he isn’t over exposed out there. He runs well. He has some pop. He displays good plate discipline. Not a star by any stretch but any draft pick that turns out a serviceable MLB player isn’t a wasted pick.

        As for Travieso, that was a solid pick that unfortunately hasn’t panned out due to injuries. Injuries happen to pitching prospects. The only one I’d call a bad pick is the Howard pick and that was mostly because I just didn’t see a SP there. I saw a setup guy or closer. Nobody could have foreseen that he’d all of a sudden not be able to find the strike-zone with a map, compass, and GPS. His control in college was pretty good.

  14. I am not sure why people would be down on Dick Williams already

    Well….let me help out. They got nothing for Jay Bruce or Cozart. For a rebuilding squad…they don’t rebuild?? DW throws out Arroyo, Feldman, Bonilla, random scrub, future Korean player, etc instead of letting the kids with real talent pitch? Winker was at AAA for most of the year despite being a year older then Andrew Benintendi. Rebuilding involves letting the young guys take their lumps instead of nonstop stopgaps. Rebuilding involves changing things up instead of watching Price do the same ineffective bs all year long?

    Pro’s : Castillo for Straily.

    We’ll see? Can he figure it out? The fact that I saw Jocketty on a phone in GABP last year means I won’t be going down I-74 for a Reds next year. This is not the court of law where they’re innocent until proven guilty. 90+ losses says they’re guilty and he needs to prove something?

    • I didn’t like the Bruce trade, but you can’t judge the GM on that alone. Castillo and Gennett were both good acquisitions. Cozart’s injuries were a big reason he wasn’t traded which are not the fault of the GM. If Williams is a failure over the next couple of years we can place blame on him. I however don’t feel he needs to be making big moves at the moment. I would wait to see how the pitching situation turns out, while listening to offers for guys that may be expendable

      • I never expected a big move. It would be nice to pull off a Kevin Kiermaier to the Cards Ozuna though? Or a good reliever? Something? Cards get a guy that could hit 40 and drive in 120. We’ll bring back Todd Coffey from the Mexican league.

      • Wasnt Jockety the GM when Bruce was traded? Cozart killed his value by having the quad issues flare up right before the deadline.

        • Then why wait til the deadline? Its not like he never gets hurt? If you’re not going to keep Zack then why not let Suarez play some SS? If they might trade Billy or have an idea that he will never pan out then why not give Schebler some run in CF? Its called being proactive!

          • I agree Indy. I said it then on these boards in early July. Trade him tomorrow. What if the player gets injured. Especially an injury-prone player like Cozart. Anyone claiming Cozart injury derailed things is clinging to the hard deadline as if making a deal before July 31st is not legal or something.

            Iglesias, what if he gets injured in spring or April and needs TJ surgery? No more value at all. Yeah, I know, ifs and buts, but sometimes you move NOW, not wait, wait, wait to try and eek a bit more value for someone. Had they done the right thing and traded Cozart in early July, even for just a decent top 10 prospect, we’d be better off.

            Had they traded Frazier right after that all-star game, after that great first half, we’d have gotten a couple of top 6 prospects for him. I guess it didn’t matter since Jocketty wanted Peraza so badly, but still.

            Don’t wait to trade, or you’ll find the value has evaporated into a 25 year old, low ceiling, high A ball pitcher.

    • Don’t forget nothing for Chapman and Frazier, whether that was WJ or DW, doesn’t matter. Look at what the Yankees got for Chapman. Cashman had to be laughing his ass off.

      • Chapman deal was all on Castellini. He wanted Chapman gone for fear he would alienate that ONE Reds fan that actually gives a crap about domestic event such as shooting holes in a garage. It was an awful business call, to sell at the absolute nadir of Chapman’s value.

    • The Jay Bruce deal was WJ’s move. And it may be too early to say Herrera is “nothing”. He may never amount to much, but I’d like to see him with a year in the big leagues before I’d say that. He’s always hit at every level. He was highly touted before the shoulder issue. (Now there is a conversation to be had about accepting damaged goods, but again, Jocketty’s regime).

      DW can’t control when players get injured nor can he control the fact that no contenders had need at SS. The bigger task of the offseason was moving Phillips to open room on the roster. That happened and it couldn’t have been that easy of a sell, especially with the no-trade clause. If anything, we can find fault in WJ for getting nothing for Cozart by not moving him to the M’s for Gohara at the 16 deadline.

    • IndyRedMan, all those reasons you listed about why a lot of people are down on Williams are good reasons. Yes, he has made some good moves. But I’m more down on him bcuz he keeps giving chances to players who have weak offense just bcuz they have great defense or were once a prospect. Everybody’s saying, “Oh, they’re young, they can get better, they deserve a chance…blah, blah, blah!” I don’t doubt that some young players get better…but not all of them. And I don’t see why the reds have to be the team that keeps giving these kids chances. It’s like the reds lock on to someone until they are good or adequate and then they justify that as a suaccess story. Just bcuz the reds are looking for bargains they tell themselves that they have to give struggling youngsters a chance or several chances. They believe Peraza’s gonna be a stud as Price or Williams so eloquently put it. Maybe I’m wrong but I just don’t think he’s gonna be anything special.

  15. Cardinals improving their team while Reds stand pat on a last place, 90+ loss team.

    https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2017/12/cardinals-marlins-making-progress-on-marcell-ozuna-swap.html

    It will come to fruition for the Cards. They will get it done. While Reds GM Dick Williams lets the market come to him. Wait out the market until January and scrape up the crumbs. What a strategy.

    • You’re correct, the Epsteins, Daniels, Dombrowski’s, DiPoto’s et al go and get it done. The Red’s FO sweep up the crumbs, if there are any.

      • These are the adjusted payrolls of the GM’s you just mentioned. The Reds won’t be near these numbers for like another 10 years with inflation.

        http://www.spotrac.com/mlb//payroll/2017/

        Theo Epstein 2017 Payroll: $182,400,336
        Jon Daniels 2017 Payroll: $185,899,040
        Dave Dombrowski 2017 Payroll: $222,552,008
        Jerry Dipoto 2017 Payroll: $171,255,830
        Mike Girsch 2017 Payroll $149,454,185

        The Reds highest ever payroll you ask? $117,967,447 (2015).

        • The payroll numbers mentioned are irrelevant in context of the argument. There are many GM’s that have payroll constraints, yet they still go out and make deals that improve their roster.

          The Red’s FO just makes excuses.

  16. Well crap

  17. “Younger roster” means they dumped salary.

    “Opportunistic” means we’re at the meetings hoping to not wait to long in the line for The Tower of Terror.

    “I think by next year we’ll be adding.” We’ve been hearing statements like that for the past 5 years.

    Skyline Chili with chop-sticks? Na, was never going to happen.

    Peraza can be a decent 2B, I don’t think he cuts it at SS. Just my humble opinion.

    I’ll give DW credit, he seems to realize the need to develop some depth through the draft.

    Ansinger: “Dick Williams, a lot of fun.” I wish Red’s fans could say that.

  18. Its official. Ozuna a Cardinal.

    It must be nice to root for a team where they actively try to improve their roster instead of actively sitting on their hands.

    The Reds have an large surplus of talent, and several areas that need improvement. For them not to try to deal for better players is puzzling.

    I’m sick of the rebuild and want 2018 to be the year where the team starts competing again. Too bad DW doesn’t seem to share my opinion.

    • Cardinals manager Mike Matheny was just on MLB Network radio and he said, “We’re in the business of getting better.”
      Don’t hear that from anyone in the Reds front office.

    • I’m with you – every year sit on their hands with their thumbs you know where … blah, blah , blah blah . Talk is cheap – do something to improve this team. It’s like Bill Murray in Groundhog Day with this rebuild !!!!

    • Agree.

  19. Outstanding week of dialogue Steve. This is almost as good as your spring training week with Doug. Thanks.
    When the Reds re-upped Price for 2018 that meant that 2019 was the year they would begin to care. I don’t get the wringing of hands and gnashing of teeth. The injuries to Homer Bailey and Devon Mesoraco crippled and postponed the rebuild. I think DW deserves the benefit of the doubt.

    EXTEND SUAREZ!

    • Well they didn’t give Scooter $80 mil so maybe they learned something from Mes and Homer? There’s a bright side:)

  20. TRADE SUAREZ FOR INCIARTE!

    • I don’t see why

      • So the Red’s don’t need a GG centerfielder who can lead off (he had 201 hits last year)? Suarez and Inciarte match up contractually and years of service. Atlanta has a CF phenom in Acuna to take over in CF and Reds have Senzel to take over 3B. Is it clearer now?

        • I don’t think it’s all that clear. While I’d prefer to have Inciarte manning CF for the Reds over Hamilton, I’m not paying Suarez for that opportunity. Suarez in my opinion is now and will be a more valuable player than Inciarte. The Reds would do well to have Suarez and Senzel in their IF.

    • While you seem overly negative Doofus, if that trade happened it would not bother me in the least. I like Suarez okay, but I think it’s getting to the point of overvalued. Inciarte is kind of like Choo was for us that one year. He gets on base, fields much better, and has some power. He would be a BIG upgrade over Hamilton. We have 3B candidates that would likely be just a ticket downgrade or maybe even equal to Suarez.

      All that said, I think Reds are keeping Suarez and you don’t trade for Inciarte unless you’ve already unloaded Hamilton or plan to move him to 5th OF to be a late inning defensive replacement or pinch runner.

      • Who are the “3B candidates that would likely be just a ticket downgrade or maybe equal to Suarez?”

  21. Reds update from Winter Meetings: Zzzzzz…..

  22. Thats too much to pay for Yelich IMO. 2+Trammell,Long+1more? Too much. I can see two of those pitchers+Long OR one of the next group.

    • It would hurt, especially given Yelich propensity to bash the ball into the ground (not much HR potential), but I figure the trade will be a staggering total for most any team to stomach to get Yelich. I like Yelich, but it sure seems to be getting excessively expensive to get him. I’d rather give up Greene who may be four or five years away than say a Mahle who appears to be a year away, upside not withstanding.

  23. Man. Marcell Ozuna in GABP would have been a MONSTER. Alas.

    • Oh he will be alright! It will just be for 8-9 games instead of 81

    • my Ozuna prediction is .250, .310, 22 HR 77 RBI …. I don’t know why.. I just don’t think he is all that good.. flash in the pan last year.

  24. I don’t get all the talk about all the bats, the Reds need starting pitching by far #1. They need someone that is going to start 30+ games and pitch 170-200 innings of competitive baseball. They only had two guys that pitched 100 innings last year.

    • You and I agree. I do think the Reds have about 10 solid candidates for rotation and in two years, even if they don’t bring anyone in, can have a top 5 MLB rotation with all the talent (injured or otherwise) in AAA, AA and A ball right now.

      They do need to plug the hitting holes that are CF and SS. BHam needs gone for something better, even at the expense of just average CF defense/range.

      I do hope, they find another Castillo like deal this year. Grab a talent with 3 quality pitches that another team has soured on a bit.

    • A top 5 rotation in 2019 or 2020, obviously NOT 2018…too much youth and inexperience still.

    • But Dick Williams has proclaimed just the opposite.

  25. I would pay Mahle+Garrett+Shed+Siri in a heartbeat for Yelich and would dance a jig all the way to the bank.

    We would win that trade in total WAR generated at the MLB level no doubt.

    • Agree.

      • I’m thinking that they would want R Stephenson, Winker and two prospects to start. I would pay that too, in a heart beat. I would not include Senzel or Greene.

        • If I’m trading for Yelich it’s because I want a core offense of Votto, Senzel, Suarez, Winker & Yelich for the at least the next 3 years. (Suarez is under contract for his 3 arbitration years 2018-2020 the rest are under contract longer)
          I would not trade Votto, Senzel, Suarez, Winker or Castillo. Anyone else could be available.

    • Ouch, that is stiff. I hope instead of say Siri or Mahle they send the no-hitting BHam.

  26. I mentioned this yesterday on RML site. But if the Reds and Giants are going to match up for Billy Hamilton it has to be headlined by Heliot Ramos. If the Giants don’t want to give him up, I don’t see a match moving forward.

    Arroyo is a nice prospect but the scouting reports don’t think he can stick at SS full time. If he can only cover the position, he’s not really different than Suarez, Senzel, or Blandino in that regard and wouldn’t be the answer at that position. He would just add to the glut of infielders that aren’t passable everyday SS’s.

    Beede is a 50 grade SP. We have a bunch of those guys (or better rated) in our system or on our roster already. He would only add to the glut of SP’s to sort through as we try to sort out the back end of the rotation.

    There’s no one else that would even spark any interest as a headliner from the Giants organization (which is pretty bleh).

    As for Iglesias, I think Heyman’s right in stating it’s an understandably high asking price. Iglesias is the Reds best trade chip, they shouldn’t be expected to give him away because teams don’t want to pay appropriate value. See if someone gets desperate as the offseason moves along. If not, try to flip him at the trade deadline where we no teams will overpay for high end relievers.

    • Yep, no rush on Iglesias. The downside to waiting for the best deal is the off-chance of an arm injury, just a risk that has to be taken possibly. I’d be fine if he were traded tomorrow or kept for the rest of his controllable years. If he can bring back TWO stud prospects that would fill holes in our upper farm system, then I am all on board. A stud SP or a stud CF or SS would be nice.

  27. So the Cards get Ozuna, a guy good for a .350+ OBP and 30+ HR.

    And the Reds…. Do nothing.

    I agree with the sentiment some have expressed on this board, the Reds aren’t that far away from contending. Between Winker/Votto/Suarez/Senzel, they should have the makings of a solid core, with Schebler/Barnhart serving as respectable 2nd tier contributors. Peraza may yet develop into a useful player. If the Reds could upgrade their offense in CF, the team would have an offense that could hang with anyone.

    Yet, there the Cards go landing Ozuna, and the Reds…. Do nothing.

    Yes, Yelich would be great, but I feel like the Reds missed an opportunity to try to land him before this feeding frenzy that is sure to follow now that Yelich has said he wants to be traded. If the Reds want to get him now, they will have to massively overpay to beat other teams’ offers, and I’m not sure they should.

    Kudos to the Cards for moving quickly before the rest of the market caught up. And same ol’ Reds.

    The front office could yet surprise us, but I can’t help but feel like other teams are driving Mustangs while the Reds are puttering along on a golf cart. It just feels like other teams are a full step or two ahead of the Reds.

    • If they are anything like my old Mustang (1985 GT), it’s more they are looking at it sitting on the side of road 😉

  28. I might be wrong, but it seems to be a mindset in the Red’s FO that goes back to WJ, and unfortunately continues today, that they are smarter than the rest of the league. However, like you said the rest of the league keeps lapping them

  29. I agree with you DOOFUS. This team has lost 286 games over the last 3 years and nobody in the front office seems to be too alarmed by that. 286 losses! That kind of failure is unacceptable in any type of business.
    First, it was the Reds will be competitive again in 2018. Now, it’s going to be 2019. In 2019 it will probably be 2020 or 2021.
    The reason this organization has stayed successful, even in the bad times, is because of the great fans that support it. I sometimes wonder if the people running the show have the same passion for this team that we do.
    I agree with those of you that feel like the Reds are not that far away from being competitive. I feel the same way. That’s why I can’t understand why they are so reluctant to be aggressive and go after those players that might put them over the hump in 2018.

    • And the Astros lost over 300 games over 3 years.
      Just wait, and in a year or two we will know.
      A partial rebuild is a losing proposition.

      • What is the measure to know when a rebuild is complete?

      • What Red’s fan cares about the Astros? Where is it written that Red’s fans must endure the troubling, bumbling mindset of a FO that will not act and proclaims “Just wait until next year,” and the year after that listen to them say: “Just wait until next year?”

        • The only reason I mentioned this, is they are the Champs.
          Follow the same process, it just might work.

      • What will we know?

  30. As the fifth season approaches since Dusty exited the managers office after the Reds three attempts to advance in the playoffs to no avail, it seems the GM meeting will end Thursday with the Reds, at most, signing Yovani Gallardo or standing pat. Us fans are told to overlook competing in 2018 and be content with more rebuild. I don’t think there has really been a solid dedication to the rebuild these past years by the front office, especially in regard to the young starting pitching prospects. Now it’s concentrate on 2019 as the year the Reds will make moves to start to contend. Hopefully that will turn out positive, but my opinion is the rebuild business has been extended too long.

  31. Steve – Appreciate the updates! We look forward to hearing about the Reds obtaining Yelich in a trade with Marlins tomorrow… Wishful thinking.

  32. I am old enough to remember a day when the winter meetings were a period of such excitement for baseball fans in general. There was so much wheeling and dealing, and G.M.’s were freer to take risks because the average contract was so much less expensive. Plus, young players with less than six years of experience have so much more value now than they did way back when because the collective bargaining agreement keeps their salaries somewhat suppressed.

    What we’re seeing this week I believe is reflective of Dick Williams’ unwillingness to compromise in what he believes is the proper return in a trade. Last year, we heard that the Marlins asked about Dan Straily, and Williams told them any deal would have to include Luis Castillo. Initially, the Marlins declined, but after repeated inquiries, they finally agreed to include Castillo.

    The fact that Billy Hamilton hasn’t been traded means Williams is holding a hard line, and while it’s frustrating that there is no activity at all for the Reds, there is absolutely no need for Williams to give anyone away for anything less than what he believes is commensurate value.

    It’s frustrating, but Williams is protecting what value remains on the roster, as part of the infamous rebuilding plan that has worked wonders for the Royals, Cubs and Astros.

    All that said, I, similar to other sentiments above, will impale myself against a bed of nails if Yovani Gallardo or his like is brought in on anything other than a minor league deal. There is absolutely no point in another Arroyo-like experience unless the entire pitching staff gets hurt again.

    • If I were you I’d purchase a suit of armor.

    • TM you always bring sage advice.

      It could be how DW values his players vs. the other GM’s value of them; or, it can be that other GM’s know that the Red’s FO has a history of selling good players for less than their FMV (e.g., Chapman, Frazier, Bruce, et al.) and their waiting for DW to blink.

      I’m all for DW being patient to receive FMV for Red’s players, but I must ask why do GM’s like Epstein, DiPoto, Daniels, Rizzo, Cashman, Anthoupouls, etc. seem able to make a deal for need or shed players, receiving value in return in an aggressive fashion?

      Could it be that they value their fan base’s opinion more and not dare settle for complacency? Or is it that their fan base is more vocal than a Midwestern town, who sometimes seems like they’re mesmerized by what the FO says; therefore, repeating their mantra; “Just wait to next year.”

      • Good questions all. I think Dick Williams is sticking to the plan. I don’t think there is any complacency. It’s my belief that, like a financial trader, he’s not going to give away any assets for less than at least equal value. The downside to that is that, at least now, it looks like there will be at least four outfielders who are candidates to be everyday starters. With the current makeup of the team, this is a good thing, because I believe Duvall needs more time off. He has worn down significantly at the end of both of the past two seasons, which is why he is being discussed in trades over Schebler.

        I mentioned weeks back that I would look to trade Hamilton for a starting pitcher with the same amount of MLB service time. That way, the issue of who has more service time is not a factor. It would be, do both of our teams improve by making this trade? I have not done the research on who the pitchers are with the same service time as Hamilton, so I don’t have a scenario to propose.

        I saw the Rule 5 pick this morning, a 22-year-old righty starter with average stats and thought, that doesn’t fit at all. The Reds already have a boatload of that type. Why would they keep someone else’s player who probably isn’t ready instead of giving one of their own a shot? Turned out Williams is trading that player to the Royals for some unknown minor leaguer. That’s a trade that the Reds really can’t lose, and the kind of trade I think Williams is looking to make — low risk.

  33. the cubs don’t have a reluctant to deal GM to make their roster better.

    • The Cubs also do not have a small market budget to deal with. Much easier to manuver when your have money to burn. Your trying to compare apples and oranges.

      • There are players that fit the Reds position needs now that are not budget breakers. There are many instances where contracts and years to FA match up. Sorry, the “Budget” excuse doesn’t work.

        • yes it does. You can not force clubs to make deals on your terms because you have players to move. there must be a need. part of the issue in moving Cozart was
          !. the word new we needed to move him.

          2. his injury and age history coupled with his salary demands.

          3. Not many clubs who good afford to sign him had a need.

  34. You know what! This off-season isn’t gonna produce much (in all likelihood). Williams has already said that next off-season is when the reds will be buyers.

    So with that in mind I’d appreciate if someone would do an article or list of the players who’re gonna be available NEXT off-season. I believe I already heard that there isn’t gonna be much quality in the pitchers that are available next year. But, just the same I would like to know what kind of quality is available for both hitters and pitchers. I just wanna know who reds fans could reasonably expect to possibly see wearing reds colors next season.

    I’m just kinda getting tired of this off-season knowing it ain’t gonna produce much if anything.

  35. I don’t mind the Reds standing pat. It is frustrating when Arroyo type players are getting the ball. I don’t get that. There is no reason for Winker to be one of four outfielders, he should be a regular and get a day off as needed. So, with a crowded outfield and Senzel on his way, I am disappointed that Scooter and Duvall are still on the roster. Four outfielders is crap and we all know that. Why not Duvall for a bullpen arm? It doesn’t sound like Scooter and Duvall are in the plans for when the Reds are going to be good again so why are they still here? I like the idea of trading for a SS but if Peraza is the guy then put him out there. I hope the Reds get some 35 year old utility SS and give him half the starts. He should play only when there is a needed day off.

    • The FO is bringing back Dave Concepcion to play SS and saying that the fans should consider that he is only 1/2 his real age… 35, but wait until next year. He’ll be 70 next June. Everyone repeat after me: “Davey is only 35 years old, Davey is only….”

  36. Perhaps DW will surprise all of us and complete a great deal for the Reds in the next few weeks. If so, I will congratulate and be proud of him. However, I’m not holding my breath, nor lining up to buy 2018 tickets.

    • Yes, I agree.
      Many times, trades are started in the WM, and completed latter.
      Spring Training has not even begun yet.

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About Steve Mancuso

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky's Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

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