The Reds are still talking with the agent for third baseman Edwin Encarnacion in efforts to avoid arbitration, general manager Walt Jocketty said on Thursday.

Encarnacion’s hearing was scheduled for Feb. 17. He is seeking $3.7 million while the club offered $2.55 million. Assistant GM Bob Miller has been the point-man for the club in negotiations and had talks as recently as Wednesday with Encarnacion’s agent.

I think an agreement will get done on this, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it announced soon.

That brings up another point, one which I’m going to write a longish post about sometime soon: Don’t you think the Reds should lock up Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Edinson Volquez, and Johnny Cueto to long-term deals? Like, now? Isn’t that the way smart teams handle young stars?