Ugh.

Miley (32) is a free agent. He pitched for the Brewers last year. 76 starting pitchers threw at least 80 innings in 2018 (Miley threw 80.2). Of those 76 pitchers, Wade Miley had the lowest strikeout rate of all. Yes, Miley had an ERA of 2.57, but that was misleading. ERA estimator stats had him much higher. xFIP of 4.30 and SIERA (which gives Miley credit for his ground balls) was 4.60. Projections for Miley’s ERA in 2019: Steamer 4.36, Marcel 4.42.

Miley’s ERA in 2017 (5.37) and 2016 (5.61) seem like better indicators. He threw more than 300 innings those two years. Pass.

More like it, although costly in terms of top prospects. Bauer (27) has 2 years of team control left, Kluber (32) has 3.

According to MLBTR, the Reds are one of many teams to have been connected with J.A. Happ, who is waiting for a team to offer three years.

It would be difficult to swallow a 3-year contract for a 36-year-old pitcher, at a projected $16 million a year.

In case you missed it:

Interview with Reds manager David Bell where he discusses, among other things, using Michael Lorenzen in the OF.

“I don’t know him as well as everyone else in the organization, but I would have no hesitation to putting him in any role, any position,” Bell said. “He’s so competitive. He takes such great care of himself. He’s going to do well in this game for a long time and it’ll be important for us to find at the best way to use him, the best way to maximize who he is.”

Interview with Dick Williams where he reflects on Day One of the Winter Meetings and talks about timing of potential moves:

“Now we feel like we’re entering that window of competitiveness,” Williams said. “We have Joey [Votto] for a limited amount of time. We now have guys like [Eugenio] Suarez signed. We’ve got building blocks around the diamond. We don’t know how far it’ll take us, but this is a year where we’re going to try to get better with the resources we have. We have some financial resources. We have some prospect capital. We definitely are focused on improving this year.

“The good thing is, we haven’t had any discussions where people say we don’t have enough prospects to enter into a discussion. I think that’s a testament to how far we’ve built the system. Are there a lot of discussions where we’re not comfortable going where the [asking price] is right now? Yes.”

“We’re trying to find the right time to strike, whether it’s a trade or free agent,” Williams said. “It’s not that prices have to drop to rock bottom. We have some resources to do deals, but we have to find the right deals that allow us to do multiple [trades]. We still have to work within our overall parameters. We have to find the right time to strike on each one.”

Update (3 pm): Phillies just signed Andrew McCutchen to a 3-year ($50 million) deal. McCutchen had been looking for 5 years and $80 million. That should take the Phillies out of the A.J. Pollock competition, possibly opening up opportunity for the Reds.

Update (4:40 pm): From Mark Sheldon. Inciarte has three years of team control left, plus a $9 million team option in 2022. He’s won the last three NL Gold Gloves for CF. This rumor sounds implausible to me. I’d read where the Braves weren’t interested in moving Inciarte. But for the right price, who knows, I guess. 

About The Author

Steve grew up in Cincinnati 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. Contemporary Reds thrills: witnessing Jay Bruce's 2010 homer and Homer Bailey's 2013 no-hitter in person. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 280 characters about the Reds is Redleg Nation, although you can follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Related Posts

44 Responses

  1. msanmoore

    Cutch to the Phillies … didn’t see that one coming. 3 years / $50M is a LOT of cabbage.

    • Matt Esberger

      Makes sense in that they are all in for 2019 and trading Santana opened up 1st base for Hoskins and Herrera, Williams, Altherr not exactly murderers row in the OF.

    • Jay King

      I’m not real high on Wade Miley either. The kinda seemed pretty terrible before last year.

  2. Matt Hendley

    Did not realize that miley had not pitched a full year last year. Only 80 innings, gross. Will definitely pass.

    • Matt Hendley

      Ivan nova off the board as well

  3. RedsFan11

    Come on Reds give us some holiday hope for next season!

  4. Jeff Gangloff

    “Are there a lot of discussions where we’re not comfortable going where the [asking price] is right now? Yes.”

    I hope Williams keeps this level head and doesn’t succumb to the pressure to “get the pitching”.

    I’m all for the Reds making moves to improve the team, but I hope it’s sensible improvement and not short term improvement which sabotages the long term outlook of the team. I’m just not sure I’m to the point yet where I feel comfortable trading away top prospects for a front end starter that we get for 2 years.

    Teams that are one piece away from a World Series or Pennant make these kinds of moves. The Reds aren’t there yet.

    • Bill

      Trading away top prospects for a couple of years of a starting pitcher scare me. As you pointed out this team is not one guy away from competing. I am hoping for a free agent signing and maybe a less significant trade. If this gets the Reds to 85 wins, then meet the asking price for an ace. When someone is asking for the 17th ranked MLB prospect for one year of Gray, it is time to walk away. I don’t expect the Reds to really compete in 2019. The Cubs are at least pretending to be out of money, Cardinals are trying to hang on, Pirates should have started the rebuild last year, so 2019 will give a good indicator of what the Reds need to do for 2020.

      • Jeff Gangloff

        I’m with you. I would rather look at potential free agents than trade candidates. If the Reds have the wheels in motion to trade for a top of the rotation guy AND add another via trade or free agency..then my mind could maybe be swayed to part with a prospect of two.

  5. Mason Red

    It’s obvious this team isn’t going to make any attempts to land big time pitching. It will be the usual sore armed reclamation projects as in the past. Same old same old regardless of who the manager is or GM for that matter.

    • roger garrett

      Never thought they would do anything and I am not sure they should.It will take some top prospects to get a front line pitcher or trading some position players we already have in the big leagues to get it done.That would be foolish because as stated we are several players away from even reaching 500 baseball because of the division we are in.Put us in the other league in with the Tribe and we just got competitive.

  6. WVRedlegs

    The Blue Jays just released Troy Tulowitzki and the remaining $38MM he is owed. Just another example the Reds front office could point to.
    The Homer Bailey watch is now on. It is an option.

    I like the JA Happ possibility. Go ahead and offer up that 3rd year if he won’t accept a 3rd year option of some sorts, team option, mutual option or player option. 3 years at $45MM shouldn’t be frowned upon.

  7. KELLY GREEN

    Am I missing something on AJ Pollock? He’s older than Billy (31). Obviously not as good a defender in CF. And his OBP was only .316 last year. What’s the lure; the home runs?

    • Bill

      Mostly that he is significantly better as a hitter. I would also expect the power numbers to be a little better playing half his games in GABP vs all the stadiums in the NL West. I’m not saying the Reds should sign him, but a CF with 25 HRs would help a lineup that had a power shortage last year.

      • Matt Esberger

        I do like Pollock and would be a good fit but injury bug every year since 2015 is a bit of concern.

    • Steve Mancuso

      Better than average hitter (power, average), better than average defender. Good speed. Instead of worst hitter in baseball. Have to look at more than one year.

  8. WVRedlegs

    The Red Sox signed free agent RHP Nathan Eovaldi, and are now looking to cut payroll.
    Now, they are said to be listening on RHP Rick Porcello ($21MM & 1 year left), SS Xander Bogearts ($12MM & 1 year) and on CF Jackie Bradley, Jr. ($8MM & 2 years left).
    JBJ might be the one to inquire about from the Reds perspective.

    • big5ed

      The problem with JBJ, and Scooter for that matter, is that he is left-handed. The Reds already have Schebler, Votto and Winker as lefties, and they don’t really need 4 lefties in the regular lineup. It didn’t use to matter with Votto, but he was mediocre against lefties last year. Defensively, JBJ is pretty close to Hamilton; not as fast but with a fabulous arm. He’s a pull hitter and would get some homers, but he is very streaky.

      I wouldn’t give up much by way of prospects for any of those guys, who are generally rentals, in a year when the Reds don’t need rentals. They may need a CF for one year, but they are loaded in CF in the minors, with Siri, Friedl, Trammell, Sugilio and Bautista.

  9. docproctor

    I hope the Reds pass on Pollock. We’ve been looking for a place to play our best prospect, and we finally have one now that we dumped Billy. Senzel says he’s up for CF and management seems fine with that, so let’s not put another roadblock in Nick’s path.

    Use that Pollock money–he wouldn’t come cheap–for pitching.

  10. Scott C

    I like the idea of signing Happ, even for 3 years, just make that third year at lower value than the first two. That is probably not the norm but I wouldn’t want a 39 old pitcher on the roster who can’t pitch and getting 2o million. We already have that this year.
    I personally would investigate Tulow. Don’t know if he can play or not but if he can play anywhere close to his 361 career OBP, 856 OBS. I would certainly think that is worth looking at for league minimum. Not saying sign him but investigate.

    • Colorado Red

      Tulo was good, but had Coors field offensive numbers.
      If Toronto released him, they must know he is not coming back.
      Of course, he would only cost a MLB minimum salary

  11. jreis

    truthfully I wouldn’t be that upset if the reds don’t make a move to acquire a cf or sp this off season.
    I like what I saw at the end of the year with Lorenzen and Reed at the end of the year to give them a chance as your 4 and 5 starters. with Castillo/Disco/ Mahle as your other 3 starters with Bailey and Romano maybe making spot starts.

    I still think we should have kept Billy for 1 more year as our cf but I can live with a rotation of Schebler ,Ervin, Peraza and Senzel for next year in center until either Siri or Trammel is ready to take over the reigns.

    the wild card for me for this offseason is Scooter. I still think offering him to a long term deal at below market value with the expectation that once India and Senzel are ready he will be a key player off the bench makes the most sense to me. I gather that he wants to stay in Cincy and he may just agree to that.

    • Reaganspad

      So glad Billy is gone. I cannot watch one more botched bunt attempt followed by strike 3.

      I would rather watch Ervin play every day. I know that he has flaws but he has potential and is a much better hitter now than the veteran Hamilton

    • VaRedsFan

      Mahle has done nothing to handed the keys to a starting spot. A little early success until the league caught up

  12. sezwhom

    Reds need to make a wow trade. Something nobody is talking about. Then I’ll get excited. Right now, talk is cheap.

    • doofus

      Agree, but a solid WOW trade, something void of speculation.

  13. scotly50

    I think the Reds will end up with Miley. I think he is in our dollar range for a second acquisition with either of the two Indians starters. Miley was money in the playoffs and a big reason they went as far as they did.

    • Matt Hendley

      Litterally the worst possible outcome….one is too prospect expensive, the other cant crack 100 innings and will litterally break into peices on the mound

  14. Gerardo Helguera

    Lets face it, if the Reds sign Miley it will resemble the the Milton signing back in ’05. Not good enough. Wade Miley had a nice year but it was a small sample size. In my opinion he’s a 5th starter maybe a #4 at best.

    • doofus

      It depends upon the contract. Miley throws worm-killers.

  15. Matt Hendley

    Literally the most boring winter meetings in recent history. The billy hamiton royals signing is one of the the most exciting signing this week. If not for McCutchen and the phillies posibly the most exciting.

    • Jay King

      Don’t forget a lot of Reds deals in the past few years have come shortly after the winter meetings. I am feeling this is going to happen again.

      I am beginning to get worried though. The price for pitching that is good seems very steep this offseason. I know it is always expensive but some of the signings seem a little crazy to me even for bigger market teams.

  16. Buddy

    I wonder what the Dodgers would want for Puig? Not sure what his contract situation is but seems like he could be a good fit. Right-handed hitter w/power, strong arm and very close relationship with our new hitting coach. Doesn’t solve centerfield but corners of Winker and Puig could be very productive. Also, Dodgers are busy thinking BIG (Harper etc) and quite likely less demanding. ????

      • Reaganspad

        who has hit 30 HRs. that is a pretty good 4th OF’er. who can play CF, and is getting better. I like his swing. Hope he is healthy in 2019 because I think he could drive in 100 rbis.

        that would be a really, really good 4th OF’er

      • Matt Hendley

        Whisper* I think he is saying he is not a 4th OF.

  17. doofus

    Kudos to the FO for what seems an actual effort to improve the ballclub at the WM, instead usual offseason BS.

    Has BC actually woke?

  18. Streamer88

    Ervin, Big Sal (as a SP), Mason Williams – these players have no place on a team that wins 81+ games. These marginal replacement players are not the future.

    Maybe Romano in the pen. They are otherwise AAAA depth at best. We’re in the NL Central – time to make some moves. Sign Dallas, trade for Kluber, OR send Scooter for Sonny Gray and then trade for Incendiarte. That offseason gets us to .500.

  19. BigRedMike

    Puig might be a good option. Another right hand power bat

    Sounds like Dodgers would just take Homer to get prospects.

    I like to hear that they are still talking with the Indians. Bauer might be a good upgrade.

    • Bob Purkey

      While Wood and Puig would be nice for the Reds NEXT YEAR, why would you give up good prospects for 1 year contracts. Next year you would have: no Puig, no Wood and not the prospects that you gave away. . . even if they took Bailey off our hands.

      This rumor just makes no sense.

  20. msanmoore

    Happ to the Yanks appears to be coming. So he is the “next domino” to fall …

  21. Jay King

    I honestly feel like we got 1 or our two starters with the trade with the Nationals. The other guy better be decent. I feel like the guy we got is a innings eater at best. Very inconsistent number year to year too.

    Glad to see Lance Lynn is going to the Rangers it appears. He is another one with Miley that I am worried about getting.