Just before the new year rang, the Cincinnati Reds reportedly came to an agreement with Japanese outfielder Shogo Akiyama on a 3-year deal per multiple reports, though Nikkan Sports had it first. Once it’s official it will mark the first time in the long history of the Cincinnati Reds franchise that they’ve had a player from Japan on their team – giving every team in Major League Baseball at least one. While not yet official, that deal is coming. And it leaves the Reds with *checks notes* eleventy-billion outfield options as they get ready to head to spring training. But they aren’t done looking at outfielders yet. Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reported this morning that the Reds are among teams making a push for Marcell Ozuna.

The offseason has been an interesting one for Marcell Ozuna’s free agency. Reports came out early last month that he was about to sign with the White Sox, but that report turned out to be false. There has been plenty of interest from multiple teams, and the Cincinnati Reds have almost always been mentioned in those reports.

The signing of Marcell Ozuna comes with the loss of a draft pick. That draft pick for the Cincinnati Reds would be their 3rd pick – not worth worrying over. For other teams that pick may be more valuable as they may have to give up a higher pick. MLB Trade Rumors predicted Ozuna to sign a 3-year deal for $45M when they released their Top 50 free agents back in November. Fangraphs Kiley McDaniels was a little higher on Ozuna, suggesting he’d get a 4-year deal worth $70M.

His 2020 projections look solid to good. Here’s what the Marcel and Steamer Projection systems say for Marcell Ozuna:

Steamer is a bit higher than Marcel is – both in terms of playing time and in terms of the slash line, but both would be productive.

What this rumor tells us, assuming it’s true, is two different things. First, the Reds still have plenty of money to spend. Ozuna was projected to get at least $15M a year for multiple seasons. While we don’t know exactly how much money the deal with Shogo Akiyama is worth, if it’s in that $5M-7M per year range, then the current payroll sits around $125M for 2020. We’ll have an updated payroll post soon with a more detailed breakdown soon.

The other thing that it tells us is that something else could be on the horizon. Again, if we assume that there’s truth in this rumor then that means the Reds could be looking at these players as outfielders: Nick Senzel, Marcell Ozuna, Shogo Akiyama, Jesse Winker, Aristides Aquino, Phillip Ervin – and then a slew of guys who normally would fit into that 4th or 5th spot. Even just leaving it with the named players, there’s not enough playing time to go around for those who seem like they should be playing most days.

Having too many good options is never a problem. Except when maybe it is? If you have a player that’s got value, but you aren’t using them enough to get that value, it may be better to trade them away for equal value at another position that you can get that value out of. Right now this is just speculation, but if the Reds were to also sign Marcell Ozuna, it certainly feels like there would have to be something else coming in the form of a trade. The outfield at that point would simply seem to be too crowded, with too much extra value sitting on the bench.

Photo of Marcell Ozuna by Ian D’Andrea. Photo has been modified slightly. License can be found here.

106 Responses

  1. Curtis

    If a trade is not in the future, could there be consideration of moving Senzel to SS?

    • Doug Gray

      No.

      The Reds tried Nick Senzel at shortstop a few springs ago. They then played him there one time during the season in the minor leagues. They do not believe he’s a shortstop. Just like they don’t believe that Eugenio Suarez is a shortstop. If they believed either of those guys were shortstops, they’d have actually been playing some shortstop over the last few years.

      • Schottzie

        How many players are athletic enough to play third base and Center field but not shortstop? I’m not disagreeing with the evaluation, but if it’s not a matter of athleticism or being able to play on the dirt, what is it?

      • Dave H.

        With Defensive decencies being neutralized, to a degree, by all the shifting WHY can’t he play SS.

        Seems silly to think he’d be appreciably worse than moose at 2b or Winker at CF, which they were comfortable enough to do 20 times last year.

      • Doug Gray

        Shortstop isn’t the spot where teams are playing guys that aren’t shortstops, even when teams are shifting more than ever.

        The Reds decided two years ago that he couldn’t play shortstop.

      • Brian

        Yeah but to be honest Doug, the old regime decided he couldn’t play shortstop. The whole system is filled with new decision makers so you never know. I’m not saying he’s going to be a shortstop I’m just saying that the old regime’s opinion holds no weight

      • Doug Gray

        The manager changed. Dick Williams, Nick Krall, and all of the scouts/personnel they listen to – those people are all still the same.

    • CP

      I’m afraid the ship seems to have sailed on that possibility. They gave him a look at ST two years ago, and have never realistically given him another shot sense.

      What seems more likely is they would move Senzel in a trade for a SS. I hate the thought of loosing Senzel, but if he can bring back a Lindor in return, AND we have an OF of Ozuna, Winker/Ervin, Shogo/Aquino, then boy that’s tough to turn away.

      That line-up would be really competitive:

      Shogo- CF
      Votto- 1B
      Suarez- 3B
      Lindor- SS
      Moose- 2B
      Winker- RF
      Ozuna- LF
      Barnhart- C

      That might shift around a bit depending on if they are facing a RHP/LHP, but man if Ozuna/Winker had to be your 7 hole guy, because you are so deep elsewhere, wow!

      Two potential problems here though. 1. Shogo has risk of not translating enough of his Japanese stats over to the MLB to justify him being a starting CF. 2. Trading six years of Senzel for only two of Lindor. This would shorten our competitive window.

      I with you Curtis, I would love to see them give Senzel another honest shot at SS, but man it could mess him up. They have already moved him around so much he is liable to get whiplash.

      • Matt WI

        Yes… the right way to go would be letting Senzel go and get something big rather than trading away Winker or Ervin for lesser parts. It would hurt, but probably hurt so good for a year or two if they got Lindor!

        Personally, I say have faith in Senzel’s ability to hit and hold on to him rather than sign Ozuna. Save some cash for a midseason adjustment as needed for the playoff push 😉

    • SultanofSwaff

      Dick Williams said they believe Nick can play anywhere on the field. Looked smooth in ST 2 years ago, still young. He’d be a better SS than Peraza or Iglesias all things considered and better than Winker is a CF, so why not try it. If he hits to his potential and plays an average defense, you have a borderline all-star.

      • JayTheRed

        Not that anyone seems to care anymore but defensively Senzel would not be better than Iglesias. Guy is a stud defensively. But on the same not he isn’t even on the team currently

        If the Red Sox are willing to give Peraza a shot someone out there maybe the Reds give a contract to Iglesias to play at least part time at SS.

    • Tom

      I’d say they sign him they aren’t convinced Aquino can play everyday. Sounds also like they would likely move Senzel, Winker or Ervin or a combination thereof. Of the 3 I think Winker has the highest upside, he just can’t hit lefthanders. Ervin still has options, he can be sent down. I just see the Reds experimenting with Senzel at SS. Would not be surprised to see a 3 team deal with Reds, Dodgers and Indians taking place. It would involve multiple players but it should help shake out the rest of this roster. Sure will be interesting to see

      • Hotto4Votto

        Roster resource has Ervin as out of options.

      • JayTheRed

        Ervin does not have options left. It has been stated on several sites.

    • MK

      The time for a trade might be now. If Senzel hits .256 again missing 1/3 of the season to injury as he has missed the last few years, His value will plummet. Trade high, buy low.

  2. FreeHouse

    Why Ozuna and not Castellanos? If you are going to get an outfielder through free agency Castellanos makes more sense because he’s younger and I also believe he’s a better hitter. If it where me I’d pass up on Marcell.

    • Doug Gray

      They’ve been linked with Castellanos, too.

      But if you are going to dive into it, there’s a chance that they don’t believe Castellanos can play enough defense to make it worth it. He’s really, really bad out there.

      • Big reds

        He’s a better outfielder than Ozuna and trending in the right direction.

      • FreeHouse

        You’re absolutely right Doug, but the same can be said about Ozuna. Marcell’s defense the past two seasons have been below average, so that Gold Glove Ozuna won can be deceiving.

      • Colt Holt

        Climbing the wall for a ball that bounced on the warming track was epic!

      • Doug Gray

        Marcell Ozuna might be a below-average fielder. Castellanos, however, is a DH they play in the field. There’s different levels of “can’t field”, and these two guys are on different levels.

      • Doug Gray

        bigreds….

        Defensive metrics aren’t great. But if we’re going to talk about them, let’s note that the article in question actually shows that Castellanos has been much worse defensively even though they give him the edge for some strange reason.

        Looking at other defensive metrics, such as the one at Fangraphs, here are the values for each over the last three seasons:
        -15, -21, -13
        -4, -3, 0.

        Scouts pretty much all agree that Castellanos is an atrocious defender, too. You’ve got to try pretty hard to find the data to suggest they are similar defenders. The article you links tried really hard, made a poor effort, and then came to a bad conclusion.

      • Redleg4life

        He also only hit well for a few months. That could be due entirely to the cubs hitting coach. I think ozuna has shown more consistency.

  3. Doc

    I’d rather see relief pitchers than Ozuna. That picture of him climbing the fence for a ball that landed 10 feet in front of him on the warning track is hard to erase.

    • Colt Holt

      Sorry, I missed this before I commented above. EPIC! Even better that he was wearing a cardinals jersey at the time.

    • Big Ed

      He was utterly awful in the playoffs, too, unable to reach balls that he should have had a play on. Although the Cardinals are still an option, there is a reason that they haven’t been more aggressive with him.

      When outfielders start to go defensively, they go fast. Ozuna was good enough to play centerfield about 3 years ago, and now he is a bumbling left-fielder. If the NL goes to the DH in 2022, then it is plausible. I hate bad outfield defense, because outfield miscues more often cost runs, not just bases.

      • Wombat

        Another possible factor down the stretch is his arm strength diminishing if he runs into the shoulder impingement issue he had leaving 2018 and recovering from it in 2019. His throwing velocity increased as the year went on but that/tendinitis coming back in his throwing shoulder could be disastrous for his already mediocre defensive play.

    • Schottzie

      You could say the same thing about Suarez getting picked off the bag at third base by Molina a few years ago. These guys play a lot of games and are featured in a lot of plays. The reds don’t need perfect players…just productive ones.

  4. RedWard

    Doug, you’ve obviously put some thought into this, and I think you’re right.

    Care to take a wild stab (key word “wild”) at what a resulting move could be? Just for fun! If it’s an OF or a package for a SS or SP or RP, etc., and what one of those deals may look like?

  5. Nate

    No Thanks. Even if we needed a DH I would still pass.

  6. Klugo

    I’d like to see the Reds announce the Shogo signing. Rumors like this also make me wonder if Shogo to the Reds is actually a done deal.

    • CP

      Shogo just needs time to travel to US and pass physical/ect. That’s going to take longer than normal because of distance. It too several days for Reds to actually announce the Moose deal too.

  7. GP

    Should we assume that because the Reds are still in on Ozuna/Castellanos that they have a team(s) on the hook for a trade? I haven’t seen anything reported about Lindor since Cleveland called for highest/best offers a couple of weeks ago – not even that they declined those offers. Makes me think the Reds best offer at the time was “We’ll give you Senzel and [XYZ prospects], but let us stock our outfield first…” Is it even possible that Cleveland (or any other team) would hold for that?

    • JayTheRed

      Cleveland and Cincinnati have a strong record of working out deals with each other in the past. Heck they share a spring training complex even. I think Cleveland would say hey we will give ya another week or two but you have to have it figured out by then or we are moving on to another team. Just a guess honestly but like so many have said on here, There has to be something coming with the potential logjam in the OF especially if Ozuma does sign with us.

  8. Tom Mitsoff

    Assuming the report is correct, we’re getting some real insight into the mindset of the Reds front office. Priority number one appears to be improvement by spending money rather than trading, and what a change that is!

    If Ozuna is indeed signed, there can be no other result thereafter than for one or more outfielders to be traded to break up the roster logjam. We all know what the rumors have been regarding trades. If Ozuna is signed and the trade is made, it might be time to have a parade PRIOR to Opening Day to salute the work of the front office.

  9. GhostRunner

    Hoping they get at least 2 good relief pitchers.

    • Redleg4life

      Indeed. We really need quality relievers that can be relied upon in big games otherwise we might make the playoffs then blow it after our starter leaves.

    • JayTheRed

      2 quality relievers would be nice but it has to be at least 1 good reliever with some decent track record. Maybe someone cones over with our new SS trade? Just a thought.

  10. Hotto4Votto

    I posted this a little pre-maturely on the Longest HR post. So I’ll repost here:

    I’ve been against an Ozuna signing from the beginning, largely because I felt we had better options on the FA market and he wasn’t much of an upgrade, if any, from a platoon of Winker and Ervin. Obviously, adding Ozuna would likely come about only if we trade an OF (Senzel or Winker) otherwise there’s just not enough projected playing time.
    But, as I sit here pondering the remaining moves the Reds could make, there may be a scenario where it makes sense. If Winker or Senzel is traded, I believe the Reds must add another starting caliber OF’er. I don’t think relying on Aquino full time is a wise bet for a competing team. Having Aquino split time makes more sense, whether that be with Winker or Akiyama. A primary 4-man OF rotation of Senzel/Winker, Akiyama, Ozuna, and Aquino would look pretty good overall.
    One last aspect to consider, it likely weakens St. Louis who I see as the prime competition for the NLC. Or…maybe I’m just trying to convince myself.

  11. Steve Schoenbaechler

    This is one I really don’t get. We have plenty of OFer’s. And, besides one season, Ozuna isn’t much better than Winker, Ervin, and Aquino. It sounds like too much money for little improvement. And, it only adds to an already overcrowded OF for us.

    I believe our interest will get updated/decreased with the news of Shogo.

    • Matt WI

      I think it makes sense of it is meant as a pre-condition to substantial trade they would like to make. If it’s just a flyer, then no, it doesn’t make as much sense.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        Precisely. There can be no other logical reason for them to be in the market for another outfielder. It seems clear that their preference is not to hand a starting position to Aquino by default. If he earns it, fantastic.

      • Redleg4life

        If Ozuna or any other outfielder is added to our plethora of talent out there then it. Almost certainly signals a trade involving multiple outfielders. Now we have to consider who else in the league has need for multiple high ceiling outfielders. I looked just now on mlb.com and according to its reliable sources the Indians and Cubs are the best targets for a trade. So I would send Winker, Ervin, Galvis, Gausman, and India to the Indians for Francisco Lindor. Then I would try to extend his contract for four years and however much money that takes. Giving us a lineup of

        CF shogo akiyama
        LF Nick Senzel
        SS Francisco Lindor
        3B Eugenio Suare’z
        RF Aristides Aquino
        2B Mike Moustakas
        1B Joey Votto
        C Tucker Barnhart
        That is a pretty scary lineup and with our rotation it could easily win the division. If we can get a lefty or two in the pen then we would be a complete team barring injury.

      • Hotto4Votto

        Gausman isn’t a Red. I think he signed with SF after the Reds non-tendered him. Also, even without Gausman included, I don’t think that package is nearly enough to have the Indians interested. Winker and India may be a decent start but you’d have to add another top prospect or someone like Mahle just to get the ball rolling there.

  12. Dawson

    Almost seems certain that Senzel gets traded. Reds FO must be concerned with his injury history.

    • Klugo

      This is just purely speculative, but I don’t think we get a very good Senzel this year coming off of shoulder surgery, if he’s a Red. If anything, it’ll be August before he’s what we want and need.

      • doofus

        My understanding is that Senzel begins throwing and hitting this month.

      • JayTheRed

        What Klugo is saying is that due to the injury it will take some time this coming season for Nick to perform to his projected ability.

    • Big Ed

      I am in favor of keeping Senzel, but even if they trade him, the acquiring team will require a physical or deep review of medicals. If the acquiring team finds physical problems like you suggest, then no trade will occur, or else that team will want a kicker that the Reds should not want to pay.

      As I’ve suggested before, the common thread to every rumor of the Reds trading for such-and-such big star is Nick Senzel. Doesn’t it tell you something that EVERY team wants Senzel? And that every one of these teams — Cleveland, Houston, Boston, etc., — knows what they are doing? If everybody else thinks Senzel is very, very good, then maybe he is.

      And maybe the Reds ought to keep Senzel for 6 years instead of paying Lindor an extra $44 million and then watch him leave for the Cubs in 2022.

      The Reds had their fans suffer through 5 years of bad, bad baseball, to get a Senzel for 7 years. Now, the Reds should throw Senzel’s prime away for a player that we all know has zero intention of resigning with the Reds beyond 2021?

      The Reds have money to spend now. They will also have money to spend in July, when they can take on salary to fill any holes.

      • JayTheRed

        Ok saying you know he won’t sign here is not appropriate. Maybe he doesn’t want to be on a big market team, Maybe he likes what the Reds do the next year and just maybe he is the next big Joey Votto type contract that the Reds dish out.

        Is it likely he would stick with the Reds probably not but nobody can say for sure until then. Maybe the Reds offer him a huge deal. We used to have an obsession with having great SS in the past maybe the Reds want to get back to that.

      • jon

        The reds could trade Lindor at the 2021 trade deadline and recoup some prospects. (maybe better than Senzel) End of Lindor 2yr. run is not the end of the world.

  13. RedNat

    I have given up on Winker and Senzel. they just don’t seem durable enough to be everyday players. I think last year will be the typical year for both of them moving forward. they had some good moments but for the most part they were either injured or not playing near 100%.
    I say go after Lindor hard with a package of Greene, Senzel and Winker and then go after another corner outfielder. I prefer Puig myself just because of the defense and his clubhouse presence. I feel he and Votto had a very special relationship and he allowed Votto to take on more of a leadership role with the players last year.

    • Big Ed

      Winker’s OPS was over .880 after his first 32 games, when he was recovering from surgery.

      And Winker’s OPS and OPS+ for his career are higher than Lindor’s. Winker’s 2020 salary will be about 3% of Lindor’s.

    • doofus

      Why would a team take Greene (TJ surgery); and, Winker and Senzel if they are not durable?

      • RedNat

        I’m hoping we can pull the wool over the Indians eyes lol

    • doofus

      Rendon was also hurt the first few years of his career. Look how he turned out.

      One must be patient with the young Jedi’s.

  14. Charles Lackey

    If Ozuna would cost the Reds an arm and a leg I would go with Castellantos. Reds fans should not be too hard on Senzel he is an outstanding player and only 1 year in the majors!! Come on fans give the man a break. Trading Senzel could very well turn against the Reds. If fans remember Reds traded Frank Robinson way back when as he was an OLD 30 year old. Senzel has many years to play. If I was an owner Senzel would rate Nick more than an ordinary player. Trading Senzel and throw in 3 prospects or more is ridiculous. Reds need help in the bullpen for sure and a real good starting pitcher would be a great addition. Ozuna is good but it seems Castellantos would be a much better choice. But who am I, just a Reds fan and want them to contend and go to the big show (THE WORLD SERIES).
    Go Reds..2020 a new season and time to win the WS.

  15. Charles Lackey

    Puig helped the Reds the one year with the Reds. He can hit, has power and plays a very good outfield plus he has speed. The Reds Front Office should really consider bringing him back and certainly be more affordable. REDS BRING BACK PUIG NOW!!!!

  16. AirborneJayJay

    It would be terribly short-sighted of the Reds to sign Ozuna and trade Senzel and/or Winker. I am just not buying into this Ozuna report or Ozuna signing. Signing Ozuna would stamp a demoralizing end to this winter for the Reds on an otherwise good off-season.
    As for Shogo, he was in Japan. He should be in Cincinnati this weekend for a physical. Remember he had an injury to a foot.
    Now on a reliever, Reds are a finalist with Will Harris. He is about to make a decision and it has been quiet with any Reds connections.

    • Big Ed

      Yes. You are getting more consistently brilliant, JayJay.

  17. Matt WI

    Maybe at worst they drive up the price for him to resign with the Cards and decrease their financial flexibility a bit.

    • RedsChicago

      This. I think this is the real reason they are “in” on Ozuna. Krall and Williams are savvy and know that they should also make their opponents worse while working to make the Reds better. This Ozuna rumor is the former rather than the latter.

  18. DocProc

    Hard pass on Ozuna. Get a couple of FA relievers instead.

  19. Bill

    Great article, Doug
    I would like to argue for an alternative to Ozuna and Castellanos. I’ll compare stats with Ozuna, since he is addressed in this article. I agree with yourcpoint that Castellanos is not an option for the Reds. If the strength of the team is pitching, why would you weaken the defense needlessly?
    I would like to suggest that trading for Trey Mancini is the best option.
    The Orioles are playing Mancini in RF,1B &DH. His natural position has been LF where he pass logged 1545.2 career innings. I say this because I believe Aquino is a natural in RF and should focus there.
    Mancini (2019)
    PA. HR. BA. RBI R OBP SLG. OPS
    679. 35. .291 97 106 .364 .535 .899

    Ozuna (2020 projection – Steamer)
    PA. HR. BA. OBP. SLG. OPS
    640. 33. .276. .344. .503. .847

    As a followup article, perhaps you could look at a possible trade for Mancini that would work for Baltimore and Cincinnati. I think you’ll agree that an outfield of Mancini, Akiyama, and Aquino would be better than Ozuna, Akiyama and anyone else on the Roster. Also, Mancini has 3 years of team control at 28 y.o.

    • David

      Interesting view. Do the Orioles need young pitching? Do the Reds have some young arms (starters) that they would be willing to part with?
      Mahle? Santillan? Antone? Others?

    • Hotto4Votto

      The counterpoint to your idea is that Mancini is not a good defender either. I realize that defensive metrics are flawed, but according to UZR last year Mancini posted a -6 while Castellanos was -5.2. Both posted 0 DRS in LF for 2019 as well. It seems they’re equally bad defenders.

  20. Bill

    Great article, Doug
    I would like to argue for an alternative to Ozuna and Castellanos. I’ll compare stats with Ozuna, since he is addressed in this article. I agree with your point that Castellanos is not a good option for the Reds. If the strength of the team is pitching, why would you weaken the defense needlessly?
    I would like to suggest that trading for Trey Mancini is the best option.
    The Orioles are playing Mancini in RF,1B &DH. His natural position has been LF where he pass logged 1545.2 career innings. I say this because I believe Aquino is a natural in RF and should focus there.
    Mancini (2019)
    PA. HR. BA. RBI R OBP SLG. OPS
    679. 35. .291 97 106 .364 .535 .899

    Ozuna (2020 projection – Steamer)
    PA. HR. BA. OBP. SLG. OPS
    640. 33. .276. .344. .503. .847

    As a followup article, perhaps you could look at a possible trade for Mancini that would work for Baltimore and Cincinnati. I think you’ll agree that an outfield of Mancini, Akiyama, and Aquino would be better than Ozuna, Akiyama and anyone else on the Roster. Also, Mancini has 3 years of team control at 28 y.o.

  21. Streamer88

    Sign Ozuna. Trade Senzel for Lindor (or my favorite dark horse, Trevor Story) and let’s go wire to wire.

    Aquino does not get 500 ABs on a 90+ win team. Shogo helps, but is not a Joe Morgan like table setter on a 90+ win team.

    We need a star. We need Votto 2010. We need Moose to lead and Suarez to lay off the stuff in the dirt.

    To win 90 games you need to try to win 100.

    Let’s go!

  22. Colorado Red

    Only 2 players would I consider trading Nick for.
    Lindor or Story (I think Story is better, most of you disagree)
    I would not include any additional prospects.
    If Cle wants him, it is straight up.

    • doofus

      I think Story is the better option also.

  23. Roger Garrett

    Unless Ozuna or some other combination can get the Reds an upgrade at short or behind the plate offensively then it makes no sense.I said before the season last year that the Reds offense would get exposed when we played closer games.No more cookies to hit to pad stats when down 5 runs early and often and I was right.It will happen again this year unless we address our postions of need offensively.We don’t know which Joey we will see but we do know about Galvis and Tucker and of course the pitchers spot.The other teams does as well and they will find them.I still believe the Reds will find a way to get it done cause they know where they are weak at just like we do.Moose,Miley and Shogo make us better but I just don’t think it wins the central but boy its great to even talk about winning when we have been so bad for so long.

  24. MBS

    One thing seems clear, Senzel will not be in the OF for the Reds if they do sign Ozuna. I know Doug disagrees with this, but he may very well be the SS of the 2020 Reds. It’s either that or they got a trade worked out for Lindor.

    There’s just too many bats otherwise

  25. SCRedsFan

    With the 3rd base market so hot, what if Suarez is the trade chip instead of Senzel in a big deal. There is no way they are going to sign Ozuna for 15+M and Lindor at 20+M w/o unloading salary from somewhere else.

    • doofus

      I have been addressing this fact (Suarez and the hot mkt for third basemen) for awhile now.

  26. Scott C

    i can’t get too excited about a possible Ozuna signing, except if it means we are adding a high upgrade at SS in a trade and need to send a couple outfielders in the move.

  27. GR8PNT2

    Interesting how we can justify what we want rather than what is. It’s a real stretch to think Castellanos is better outfielder than Ozuno or in the same sentence. IF they were to get Lindor then another outfielder is icing on the cake as he is the bat they need. If that becomes reality then apparently they have the CF they need. If not, then they need the bat. I’m tired of watching Ervin throw to the wrong base or make bad throws, I don’t care how well he hits left handers. I’m tired of waiting on Winker to “arrive”. Senzel for Lindor is a must if possible. Now is their window for big success, not 82 wins. I don’t think the bullpen is as needy as some think. I’m still not sure about Senzel although I hate to see him be traded but potential is another way of saying he hasn’t done it yet and it would have to be for someone who has. The way it is lining up it seems something big is brewing. Just saying.

  28. BK

    I’m not wild about Ozuna–LF is not our weak spot. How about a trade between the Reds, Dodgers and Yankees?

    Dodgers get Happ and Urshela from the Yankees and India from the Reds and the Reds pay Happ’s 2020 salary. Urshela plays 3B for the Dodgers, Happ round out their rotation, and India gives the Dodgers a potential replacement for Justin Turner in 2021.

    Yankees get DeSclafani, Winker and Galvis from the Reds. Winker provides a solid LH option for the Yankees and DeSclafani takes Happ’s spot in the rotation at a fraction of the cost. Galvis provides IF depth and another LH bat for the Yankees RH heavy lineup.

    Reds get Seager from the Dodgers and Frazier from the Yankees. Reds payroll would be at about $132M (without Akiyama, upper $130’s with him). Potential is still their to shore up the pen. Mahle takes DeSclafani’s rotation spot.

    LF Akiyama
    CF Senzel
    SS Seager
    3B Suarez
    2B Moustakas
    RF Frazier
    1B Votto
    C Barnhart/Casali

    Bench: Ervin, Aquino, Farmer, VanMeter, Casali

    • centerfield

      our starting LF, SS and a starting P and India for Seager and Frazier? standing pat would be a better idea….

      • BK

        Thanks for the feedback, here’s my rationale. Reds would be trading:

        – Winker: LH hitting platoon LF, I like Winker, but he’s defensively limited and quite limited against LHP. Yankees want a LH hitter for their lineup. He’d the toughest one to give up, but you must give value to get value.
        – Galvis: marginal as a starting SS with one year of control (neutral value in this trade; Yankees rumored to like him). He’s a bench player on a good team.
        – DeSclafani: a solid, affordable starter, but we only have him for one more year. Miley’s acquisition makes him available.

        Frazier and Seager can hit–that’s what the Reds need.

        Frazier comes with an extra year of control over Winker. Frazier can play all 3 outfield spots. He was solid defensively in the minors, too. He doesn’t have the same drastic platoon splits that Winker does, so he can play most everyday. They’re approximately equal hitters, but Frazier should play more.

        Seager is comparable to Suarez as a hitter. He’s also excellent defensively.

        This trade would “get the hitting” at the expense of our rotation (team strength) and a minor hit to the bench. Defense is likely better, too. Likely money to bring in one more veteran pitcher.

    • CP

      An interesting trade idea for sure, and one that would make all three teams happy, I think. I do fear that the rotation becomes too thin to pull this off though. It will take more than 5 good starters to get through the year, and after Mahle there are no certainties to fill into the rotation if/when an injury/poor performance happens.

      I love the idea of getting Seager and Frazier, but at the cost of exposing our rotation to such risk and losing Winker in addition to that, might solve one problem at the expense of creating another one or two.

    • AirborneJayJay

      Minor league deal. 1B/3B. Pretty decent power at AAA, but that was with the new baseball and in the PCL.

    • JayTheRed

      Rumor has it the Reds lost some Minor League infielders to free agency and this will help fill that gap plus maybe be a bat off the bench at the majors if he makes the team. I don’t think he would but having some thunder in the minors never hurts.

  29. KDJ

    Why are people clamoring for someone who hit .241 last year?

  30. Justin

    Reds send Winker, Galvis, India, Santillan to the Indians via Dodgers

    Dodgers send Seager and Pederson (salary dump) to Reds. Send two top ten prospects (not named Lux) to the Indians.

    Indians send Lindor to the Dodgers, and send Hand to the Reds.

    Reds get Seager, Pederson (Winker replacement), and Hand.

    Sign Ozuna.

    Print World Series tickets.

    • JoshG

      not bad…. still don’t really want Ozuna though

    • CP

      Don’t need to sign Ozuna if they get Pederson to replace Winker. I would use the money for Ozuna on another RP.

      I love the trade idea, but I’m still not sure it would go through. Dodgers would be giving up Seager, Pederson, and two top ten prospects to get Lindor in your scenario.

    • VaRedsFan

      The Indians wouldn’t be too thrilled with that. In order for them to trade Lindor, they either want Senzel, or Lux in the deal.

  31. Chris Holbert

    Too many teams that have successful FO histories want Senzel, that should tell the Reds, who have had marginal FO success until recently, something.

    • VaRedsFan

      But the team that knows the most about Senzel (Reds) have him in the discussions.

      • AirborneJayJay

        And the Reds are the team that has totally screwed up his development. Senzel was voted the top defensive 3B in all of minor league baseball in 2017. Senzel was voted the top defensive 2B in AAA in 2018. Yet, the Reds cannot find time for Senzel at 2B, it is just unfathomable. When Scooter got hurt near the end of spring training in 2019, Senzel should have been installed as the Reds regular 2B. End of story. Scooter cannot even get a minor league deal at this time. And the Reds sign a guy to 4 year/$64MM contract to play 2B, even though that guy only has played 2B for 47 games in his whole career.
        There were the service time games the Reds played at the end of spring training that prevented them from playing Senzel at 2B. So they send him down instead of playing him at 2B and the next day he severely sprains an ankle. And without giving Senzel much time to acclimate himself to CF, they put him in CF to stay. He was adequate in CF, but nothing special. That was up until August started. The shoulder injury caused the wheels to fall off.
        If the Reds had just installed Senzel at 2B when Scooter got hurt, then most likely Senzel doesn’t start the 2019 on the IL with a severely sprained ankle and doesn’t hurt his shoulder running into the OF wall.
        Total mismanagement of Senzel by the Reds front office. And Winker is going to be the next victim of the Reds front office miscalculations and mismanagement.

      • VaRedsFan

        I do agree that he should have been the 2nd Baseman when Scooter went down. Scott Schebler was the opening day CF’er. I don’t why he dropped off the planet. It might have been the shoulder injury he sustained.

      • Old-school

        Senzel was blocked at 3b.
        Suarez hit 49 home runs , plays an acceptable 3b and has a very good contract, not to mention he’s the teams best position player and easy to root for.

        I wanted Senzel at 2b and lead off even before Gennett got hurt. The Reds should have traded Gennett in 2018 or even after 2017. There was no future for him as an aging expensive player on a perennial last place team. Thank you Scooter though for 2017/18!!

        But, there was no succession plan for Hamilton in CF. Senzel’s speed is surprisingly elite – and finding a CF is hard. Hamilton wasn’t moved off SS till after his AA year. Second base is easier to find and Senzel is going to grow as a player. He’s the closest thing to Barry Larkin as a 5 tool player in 20 years and that is why everyone wants him.

  32. RedsFan11

    There are so many smart educated Reds fans on this website. So as a man of standard intelligence I am absolutely dumbfounded as to why 90% of the people are all on board with trading Senzel…

    He absolutely raked in the minors at all levels. Yes in 2018 he had the vertigo issues but by spring training 2019 he was again tearing the cover. He only got sent to the minors because of ridicously cheap FO manipulating service time. Who’s to say he wouldn’t have gotten hurt if he wasn’t sent down?

    Yes by the end of 2019 he looked worn out, but he only had 200 ABs in 2018 then had to battle injury in 2019, which again may have been avoided.

    Unless the FO knows something from the shoulder surgery that has severely hurt his skills, then imo it would be a huge mistake to trade.

    • Redleg4life

      I agree Senzel is our next star. We can’t trade him. That being said a few corner outfielders for a good lefty in the pen would be nice.

    • VaRedsFan

      Several reasons.
      1. Senzel may not be a top 5 guy on his TEAM, while Lindor is a top 5 player in ALL OF BASEBALL.
      2. You answered your own question…Vertigo, thumb, and shoulder. Though he can rebound from the thumb, the shoulder bounceback is harder and a big unknown. The vertigo will always be lingering.
      3. The pitching is as good as it has ever been, starting last year and having our main guys peaking for the next two years, so the time is now to take a shot. In 3 years, when Lindor is gone, the pitching probably won’t be as elite in Senzel’s 3rd-6th years if he were still a Red.

  33. Gonzo Reds

    Guessing the Indians are off Lindor offers so unless we are signing Iglesias to another deal think we are done on hitting.

    Who are the top RP targets still available? Do we have a shot with any of them given our ballpark makes pitchers run towards the west coast?

    How much you wanna bet Doug is already typing up such an article?

  34. AirborneJayJay

    Relief pitcher Will Harris signed with the Nationals. Oh well. Glad the Reds didn’t go 3 years on a reliever that is already 35 years old. Even a good one like Harris. The Reds got one good year each from Hernandez and Hughes but things went south in the second year of both of their deals last season. There are a few decent relievers still out on the free agent market like former Nat Daniel Hudson, former Padre Craig Stammen, and former Cubs Steve Cishek and Pedro Strop. They all have their warts.