The Cincinnati Reds stated early in the offseason that they planned to find a shortstop for the 2021 season. When the offseason began, the market had plenty of options in free agency. Korean star Ha-seong Kim was being posted and coming to the US. Didi Gregorius, Marcus Semien, and Andrelton Simmons were at the top of the free agent market among established big leaguers, and then you had Freddy Galvis, who was looking at a lower dollar deal.

On Tuesday night three of those players came off of the board. Freddy Galvis signed with the Baltimore Orioles first. Marcus Semien went next, signing a 1-year deal for $18,000,000 with the Toronto Blue Jays. And then it was Andrelton Simmons who signed a 1-year deal for $10,500,000 with the Minnesota Twins. Kim signed earlier in the offseason. That leaves Didi Gregorius as the lone shortstop left worth going after among the free agents for the Cincinnati Reds. And they aren’t alone, either. Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the Reds, along with the Philadelphia Phillies are focusing on bringing Gregorius into the fold.

The free agent market is not the only way that Cincinnati can get a shortstop for 2021. The trade market is also an option. It’s harder to know exactly who is available there than in free agency. And unlike free agency, you not only have to pay the player, but you also have to trade talent away in order to add a player.

The Reds find themselves in a bad situation. They decided that Jose Garcia needs more time in the minor leagues after he posted a .400 OPS in 67 at-bats in the Major Leagues this season. Kyle Farmer re-signed a split contract with the team after being non-tendered in December, but he’s never been an every day player and he most certainly has never been much of a regular shortstop anywhere in his professional career. In the Major Leagues he’s played 86.2 innings at the position and he’ll be 30 in the upcoming season. As things sit right now, those seem to be their two options from an internal standpoint.

Whether it’s going to be Didi Gregorius, or someone on the trade market, it’s clear: Cincinnati is running out of both options and time to find their starting shortstop for the 2021 season. Gregorius is projected to hit .275/.321/.473 in the 2021 season. The drop from there to Kyle Farmer or Jose Garcia is stark. ZiPS projects Farmer to hit .244/.297/.366, and just .220/.264/.316 for Garcia. While ZiPS is just a projection system, not a “written in stone” system (which would defeat the purpose of playing the games), the Reds offense isn’t exactly one that projects well. Gregorius would be a positive boost, and not adding him and just going with internal options is likely a big time downgrade for an offense that was already looking like one that could struggle.

109 Responses

  1. Justin A. Fortner

    Cheap reds like always. Just spend money to fix the glaring weakness on a contending team. Stop penny pinching and screaming poor. other teams are doing it. absolutely no excuse and we as fans should not let it happen. when you are so close to contending this is when its okay to overpay because your window is not very big.

    Honestly a message needs to be sent to the Reds FO.

    Post edited. Don’t avoid the swear filter with **** – just use a different word.

  2. NELSON COBLE

    Didi is their only opportunity. They are blowing it again.

    • jon vera

      not out bidding the big spending rich Phillies.

      • RedsGettingBetter

        Yes, in fact, Pillies have beaten Reds pursuits of Realmuto , Wheeler and Gregorius before…

    • W.Lackey

      I agree Did I needs to be signed but not for a ridiculous amount. Why can’t the Reds be a real contender they haven’t been since Dusty Baker left.

  3. TR#1

    Iglesias had club option picked up and was not free agent. We would have had to trade like Angels. Also, not my money but no way I pay Semien $18 million even for one year. Simmons deal probably within reason. Might as well have signed Galvis cause we ain’t paying $14-$15 million for Didi. We be screwed without trade.

    • Doug Gray

      Thank you for the correction – I’ll fix the article.

      The last year has melted my brain, or what was left of it.

      • TR#1

        No worries Doug as you do a great job. Let’s hope 2021 can be an easier year on us all mentally. You think any of SS transactions were overpay if you ran a team?

  4. TR#1

    Surprised at how robust market been lately. Really thought lower annual values but owners seem to be sensing more revenue from gate. Well as vaccinations amongst the educated

    • Gary Lawrence

      Move Suarez to SS and bring up India problem solved.

      • Jenyns

        Great idea, Suarez to SS, moose to 3rd, Senzel to 2nd, akiyama to center, winker to left, done, Gray said he can’t play SS but I disagree, after spring season I think it’s a go

      • Hal Ludwig

        “Suarez can’t play SS”.

        Neither can Garcia or Farmer; at a passable level that is, yet someone has to. Not picking from ideal or optimal options potentially brings people that “can’t play the position” into the discussion.

      • Bob Purkey

        Not a good choice, even if he lost 30 pounds. An average, at best, third baseman, what can’t people are that he would be a horrible SS?

      • jazzmanbbfan

        He could barely play SS when he WAS the SS. Now I cringe at the thought of him at that position.

      • Hotto4Votto

        Hunter Greene is closer to being a SS than Suarez.

    • JayTheRed

      Teams have to fill holes eventually. There is not a lot of time left before spring training is supposed to start. Even with the flurry of signings lately there are still a pretty good chunk of top 50 free agents unsigned still.

    • Jack

      I can’t imagine what kind of defensive WAR that would result in, -4.0 or -5 seems likely. If he hits .300, 50 HR and cuts his strikeouts in half it might be a net positive.

  5. Hotto4Votto

    If the Reds don’t add a SS, with all the good options and payroll cutting/re-allocating, and it being the only stated goal, it would be a pretty epic fail. Add it to the other disappointments to the offseason, not a good look.

    • RedAlert

      They’ll add Jack to the SS position ….. Otherwise known as Jack Squat . Typical Reds move – wait till painted in corner with no other options . Now they will make some weak excuse up as to why they failed to sign or trade for glaring hole as SS . Hope like heck that I’m wrong ….

  6. Nick in nky

    Garcia starting SS now I’d bet. Whatever the community feelings about the financial situation, we can probably figure they didn’t dump Iggy and Bradley just to overpay Didi.

  7. Doc

    Perhaps India’s development plays into a possible Suarez trade that nets a SS, although I’m fine with Farmer until we see if Garcia can hit AAA pitching and make the jump. 2021 is going to be another weird year.

    • JayTheRed

      I’m sorry but they stated that they were going to go out and get a shortstop. If Farmer is the SS that’s a joke in my mind.

      Show me the money!!!! no more poor team poor team. I’m done with that.

      • Frostgiant

        Farmer did become a free agent. So they can say they went out and got him. Could that really be the reason they non-tendered him? If so that is a new low for the front office.

      • Tomn

        I like Farmer as a utility player. Not getting a SS is a joke. I’d personally be fine if they trade Suarez, put India at 3B, if they were to get a nice haul from a Suarez trade, including a decent SS+ – or even a very good SS prospect + .

        Overpaying for Semien would not have been the way to go, but sure like to see the Reds do something to show they are serious about winning in 2021.

  8. Greenfield Red

    Two words: Alfredo Rodriquez.

    I didn’t say they were words we wanted to hear, but he could be the opening day shortstop. Got to get something for their $7,000,000.

    • DaveCT

      If it ends up a choice between defensive ability, or not, it’ll quite possibly be AlfRod. If we’re saving money, may as well save money. Or go find Zach Vincej again.

    • MBS

      It’s a no brainer. Rodríguez is the best in house option for the Reds. I’d rather have Didi, but if not I’m happy with Rodriguez. Could definitely see a competitive Reds team acquire a mid season SS, when next years FA are cheaper.

    • JayTheRed

      Actually I was just looking to see who was actually left.
      Jonathan Villar 2019 stats were not that bad.
      .274 Avg. .339 OBP, 642 AB, 172 SO, 40 SB, and hit 24 HR.

      His numbers in 2020 were not that good but I don’t put a lot of stock into 2020 stats.
      .232 Avg. 301 OBP, 185 AB, 54 SO, 16 SB, and only hit 2 HR though.

      Also out there still from what I can tell.( couldn’t find if these two signed deals)
      Joe Panik – not to impressive
      Addison Russel – Again has not been good the past few years.

      Having followed my home state Brewers I did enjoy Villar overall as a player. If he is a one or two year gap until Garcia is ready I would be ok with that.
      Gregorius or Trade is what I would like to see now at this point but I would not be opposed to Villar at age 30.

      • Jack

        I don’t see Villar as a shortstop anymore. He’s more of a utility player who would a big defensive liability full time.

  9. Justin

    I think the Reds might benefit from next years big SS class. No one wants to go over 1 year. I’m guessing Didi doesn’t want to be back on the market next year. He’d go from possibly the best option to the 4th or 5th best.

    Maybe the Reds can get him on a 2 year contract and move him around the diamond some in 2022 while they ease Garcia into the full time role.

    2 years $30 million and he’s a Red.
    I don’t think the Reds will do it though.

  10. Michael B. Green

    Was just going to write the same thing. If the ask for Didi is too high, I can see CIN looking hard at Villar. Villar could have a lot of value playing all over the diamond too if Garcia forces CIN’s hand for a call-up. The same goes re India too as that move would likely lead to the DFA of either Farmer or Blandino and then position flexibility stands out.

  11. RedsFan11

    Galvis signed for only 1 year $1.5M and that was still to expensive for the bargain basement Reds… their only signings this offseason are hope and a pray pitchers, so I can only assume this big SS acquisition is signing Zachary Cozart to a minor leauge deal with an invite to spring training. I heard the deal Ian close burn Cozart wants a $1 per MLB AB incentive and the Reds won’t budge…

    • Cubano

      To be fair- if you’re looking to compete, why spend the 1.5 million on Galvis? I wouldn’t spend 1 million on him at this point – his defense was terrible in the short sample size of 2020, and his bat is never very good. He’s a solid journeyman but he’s inferior even to Jose Iglesias. I gotta assume they’ll find something- but not much could have been worse than more Galvis

      • JayTheRed

        I took a big sigh of relief when I read Galvis had signed somewhere else.

      • RedsFan11

        Completely agree Galvis would of done nothing. But what I take that as is that the Reds weren’t even willing to spend $1.5M. I hope I am wrong

    • Doc

      Assuming Galvis wanted to come back to the Reds. He was not exactly praised highly by Reds fans.

  12. Dan

    What do we think of Villar? Most are not mentioning him at all. His 2019 season in Baltimore was awesome (.274/.339/.453, 24 HR, 40 SB), and he played all 162 games! Although he was terrible in 2020 (.232/.301/.292)…

    I love Didi, and would be thrilled to have him back in Cincinnati! But Villar would come cheaper, I’m sure. And the team sure needs some speed. If he could do anything remotely close to his 2019 season, he’d look nice at the top of the lineup.

    Thoughts? Is Villar passable defensively at SS?

    • JayTheRed

      Well here lets just say this.. He can’t be any worse than Kyle Farmer at SS. I am actually for getting Villar if we can’t get Didi. I think he is going to want to go back to the Phillies who just showed they want to win more than the Reds do by signing Realmuto.

      Assuming too that a trade for with Houston or Colorado doesn’t happen too. At this point though I am thinking the savings in cost with Villar might be more worth and it also sends a message to Garcia that hey you show us your ready we can call ya up this season. Villar did a pretty decent job with the Brewers playing multiple infield positions.

  13. Dan

    As an aside, the Reds as a team were TERRIBLE vs. LHP’s last year. (They were bad against righties too, but vs. lefties it was truly miserable…)

    Reds hitters vs. RHP (2020) – .216/.320/.413
    Reds hitters vs. LHP (2020) – .200/.291/.376

    Yeesh! That is not fun to look at…

    Semien would’ve helped with this issue, but that ship has sailed. Didi would be another lefty in the lineup…

    • Old Big Ed

      This is why I am against signing Didi. The Reds already have Votto, Moustakas, Winker and Akiyama as LH hitters in their offensive rotation, plus Barnhart in a platoon. Didi had nit LH pitching pretty well up until the last two years, and some of his peripherals are iffy. I think Didi is not really a viable option, looking at the team as whole.

      Which leaves them with Villar, or Alfredo Rodriguez as a glove-first option.

      The alternative is to trade Suarez to the Dodgers (and maybe a third team) for a package that would include a shortstop, and I assume that Lux is not available. Chris Taylor can play shortstop and is a free agent after next year, so he is a possibility in any Suarez trade.

      I would prefer Villar.

      • Doc

        I would not trade Suarez for a one year rental.

      • Old Big Ed

        Nor would I. Hence the use of “for a package that would include a shortstop.”

  14. Redsvol

    I think we have enough slow, defensively challenged players on the roster to think Villar would be a good option. I would like Didi on a 1 year deal but I don’t think he is aging well for a multi-year deal. I say give it to Farmer and Blandino until the trade deadline and then make a decision on whether Garcia is ready or who might be available for a trade.

    • JoshG

      Did you just call collar slow? Huh?
      Since it’s not my money I’d rather pay for gregorious.. but I’d also be fine with a 1 or 2 year deal with Villar

  15. Mike

    When the Dodgers sign Justin Turner, they are going to go over luxury cap. I have read where they do not want to do that. If so, let’s go trade for Chris Taylor. Good hitter, very good defensive numbers at SS. Only one year left on contract at approx. $8 mil. Good stop gap until Garcia. Shouldn’t have to give up too much since LAD would not want anymore payroll.

  16. Steven Ross

    Maybe Leo Cardenas is still available?

    • Bob Purkey

      Hey, why not Roy McMillan or Eddie Kasko. . .Youngsters, look them up.

    • DaveCT

      Thinking they could bring Billy Hamilton back and re-convert him to SS. Let the Follies begin.

  17. Klugo

    Garcia. You know it. I know it. We’ve all known it.

  18. CFD3000

    Why announce to the world that your top priority is an upgrade at shortstop, then let three of the top four SS options slide by? Even if they do end up signing Gregorius they’ll pay more than they needed to by painting themselves into a corner. Very. Disappointing.

    Will Villar or Rodriguez or Garcia or Farmer play SS in 2021? Sure. But this whole mess sends a discouraging message to the rest of the team, the fans, and all of baseball that the Reds are not – at least not right now – serious about winning. This is not just a fail for 2021, it makes it that much harder to lure talent to Cincinnati to play, coach or run the Reds.

    • Doc

      They announced it to Cincinnati. You give too much credit to how far Cincinnati news travels!

  19. Mark Moore

    For me, the only redeeming thing here (tongue mostly in cheek) is that the rest of our Division regressed and our starting pitching is still probably better than any of them.

    I still have strong doubts about any full season, but that likely means the DH will happen as will a few other tweaks like expanded rosters. Sure Gregorious for 2-3 years would be nice, but that’s probably $12-15M per season at this point. Maybe Villar is the better option for us.

  20. Tom

    Sorry, but the Reds are not just one player away from being a winning team. So it does not really matter if they only have a cheap-warm body at SS.

    • MBS

      I think they are a winning team as is. If you define winning as over 500. They are not WS competitors, nor 1 player away from being one. Well Lindor would have gone along way to get them there, the problem is there are no other SS that the Reds could have got, that would have had that kinda potential.

  21. Steve Schoenbaechler

    First, the SS FA market wasn’t very good. I honestly wasn’t impressed with any of them. If I signed any of them, I would have signed the Korean kid and signed early.

    The Reds need offensive help. So, I forget about the glove at SS for now. With that, Didi was the best proven bat out there. And, Didi is still there.

    Past Didi, it’s a tossup. Just get one and more to the next item.

    Honestly, for the health of the Reds, I hope the prospects show some development this year. AND, I hope we keep that development up. We had it going good with Krivsky and O’Brien, I believe. Jocketty came in and blew the development up.

    And, the prospects either continued to be traded away or not producing, or simply mismanagement of them. Going back to drafting Alonso, why? A first rounder who was going to be blocked by a young Votto. Stupid move. Tried changing his position; that didn’t work. Drafting Senzel when he was blocked by a young Suarez. Tried changing his position to something he’s never been close to playing before; Senzel has been injury ridden ever since. Lorenzen they simply have no clue what to do with. Rushed Chapman up here too soon. Could have moved Senzel to 2nd; spend money on Moose instead.

    I do like a lot of what Williams was doing. I can understand the saber movement quite well. However, I just hope they don’t try to “force” players to be something they aren’t simply because of the “sabers” say otherwise. For instance, trying to increase the arm angle of a pitcher to get more curve on a pitch. But, everyone knows that the higher the arm gets, the weaker the shoulder gets, aka more likely for injury. I mean, some player’s anatomy and physiology can take the changes, but some can’t. And, the “sabers” never take that into consideration.

    We simply need to get back to developing the minors. Then, once the minors start feeding the major league club like before, keep the development up. For, at that time, prospects can be used for: 1) fill in at the major league club, and 2) trades to fill in holes. We can also use FA, then, to fill in the holes. But, long term sustanance comes from the minor league development.

    I’m not calling on to take their time in developing them at all. For, I believe it seems like we don’t see players up here till they should be well into their prime years. There’s no rule that states a first round draft choice has to start at Billings. There’s no rule that a minor league needs to spend an entire season at one level of the minors. If they are showing the progression, get them up here.

  22. docproc

    I’ll repeat what I’ve been saying since the Reds cut then resigned Farmer: He will be your Opening Day shortstop.

  23. LDS

    Maybe they should sign Barry Larkin as player/manager. Kills two birds with one stone, rids the Reds of Bell and signs a real shortstop. And since they’d only being paying for one position vs. the current two, it’s a net savings. And given Barry’s age, he’d probably sign for league minimum. So what if he’s not the player he once was. Big deal.

  24. TXRedleg

    I don’t believe Didi will be signed – when they’re trying to trade any warm body earning more than league minimum, it’s difficult to imagine that they’re going to (over) pay another veteran right now. Quick! To waiver wire !

  25. Russell Proctor

    Again- Why not Senzel? Here are all the problems it solves:

    1) Fills SS role with a (potentially) great option that costs us NOTHING
    2) Opens up logjam in OF for Shogo to play everyday CF
    3) Much less injury risk for Senzel
    4) Dude played SS his whole career.

    I see no downside. The fact that the Reds aren’t even considering it is offensive to me.

    • JoshG

      4) Dude played SS his whole career.
      not in the pro’s

    • Bob Purkey

      I’m not sure playing SS is a less injury prone position than CF.

      • greenmtred

        I’m not either. Lots of leaping and diving and twisting at SS. He hasn’t, as I recall, been busting himself up by running into the outfield wall on a regular basis. And the Reds–including Larkin–looked at him at short and concluded he couldn’t play it.

    • LDS

      Senzel’s batting line has been declining steadily since his move to AAA and he seems unable to stay healthy. He’s projected to be about a .245 hitter this year. He played 13 games at SS while at TN and 1 game at Louisville, and only 1 of those was a start. He’s primarily a 3rd baseman, having played 263 games at that position vs. 127 in CF. (Baseball Reference). I’m not sure trying to trade him might not be a better idea.

      • Russell Proctor

        Sorry, you all are right- I meant he has played infield for most of his career before the pro’s.

        But I think it would absolutely be less injury-prone- No walls to run into.

        And finally- You would get next to nothing for him right now. He was #2 overall pick- You have to give him one last shot to show himself.

    • docproc

      Yep–giving Senzel a shot at shortstop seems like a no-brainer–especially with the current logjam in the outfield.

      I know some people are going to come on here and say they gave Senzel a try at SS and it failed, so that ship has sailed. Well, that trial was awfully brief, and lots has changed in the IF and OF since then. Time to give it another try.

      • DaveCT

        At this point I would not mess with Senzel any more. Having him learn CF in the majors, for all practical purposes, then changing his batting mechanics mid season. I’d just leave him be.

      • Redleg Bob

        Senzel will be fine if they just play him every day and let him be. It was the Einstein that changed his whole batting stance and approach that sent him spiraling downward. Idiotic. I want to say he was around .300 at that time.

    • MBS

      I’ve been an advocate of that for a while. Everyone says the Reds don’t think he can field the position. I don’t disagree he might be a poor fielder at SS. His arm is good, and his (potential) bat is better than any other in-house options for SS.

      We are living in a strikeout, walk, home run world. It might be worth the Defensive liability for the upside of his bat. If they don’t reverse course on Senzel, I’m happy with Rodriguez.

      • greenmtred

        We may well be living in that world, but appears to be an unfriendly world for the Reds. If defense doesn’t matter, then pitching isn’t very important, either. For all of the talk about strikeouts, they account for fewer than half of the outs, so poor defense–the Reds’ calling card lately–results in giving up more runs. Runs that the all-or-nothing offense is often unable to match.

    • TR

      I’ve always felt Senzel belongs in the infield, with the exception of first base. Playing him in centerfield, to me, was always a stretch and his injury history seems to prove it. As stated, such a move would declutter the outfield and make Shogo the regular centerfielder and leadoff hitter. This, in my opinion, would stabilize the Reds. They have the talent to win the Division, but they need leadership now from GM Nick Krall.

  26. Roger Garrett

    Said it before and will again put Garcia at short and lets go play ball.Doug said he had 67 at bats last year in the majors so lets give him 300 or more and see how he does.If the Reds season is defined by the the offense we get from him or even Farmer at short then stick a fork in this team cause we have no chance even in the weakest division in baseball.I would think if we can give Tucker another year,which is it 5 or 6 to try to learn how to hit we could give this kid at least as I said 300 at bats.

    • Old Big Ed

      Roger, I believe the concern with doing that is that Garcia could be permanently stunted as a hitter, if he went to MLB now while needing another year to grow against AA/AAA. It’s somewhat akin to throwing a Tim Couch or similar young quarterback into the fire with a terrible offensive line, and expecting him to develop any skill other than self-preservation. Or starting a promising young horse too quickly against top-flight company, where you run the risk of breaking his spirit.

      The Reds believe Garcia will be a solid MLB bat, but that to get there, he needs more apprenticeship at a lower level. They might be wrong, but that is the thinking.

      Further, under the present service-time rules, it behooves a team to bring up a young player only when (a) he is ready to succeed at the MLB level, or (b) he is at the point where what he needs to learn can only be learned at the MLB level. In other words, a team shouldn’t waste 3 years of their 6 years of control on substandard production. See Bailey, Homer et al.

      Garcia’s pattern is to struggle a bit when promoted, then adapt and thrive with more repetitions. He skipped a step last year, and needs to take that interim step this year.

      • Roger Garrett

        Old Big Ed your logic is sound but we are talking about our team,our beloved Reds.I believe its very simple on how they view Garcia.Its just like they view all of their other minor leaguers.They throw them under the bus or anoint them based on a few at bats or a few innings pitched.If in those 67 at bats that Garcia had last year he had been better and he hit 250 or so they would have penciled him in at short for the next 10 years.Its just what they have done with all of their young players.They identify who this player is and what he will become after just a cup of coffee in the big leagues in most cases but there are the Perazas,and Billys and Tuckers that get years in the big leagues.The inconsistent way they handle prospects amaze me.All I am saying is what Garcia does or doesn’t do at the plate won’t make or make the Reds season.I say we pretend he is Billy because he can run or pretend he is Tucker because he is good on defense and give him a shot.

  27. Rednat

    most of my adult life i could sleep soundly knowing the shortstop position was solid for the Reds with Concepcion and then Larkin. the last 15 years have been a roller coaster ride indeed at the position. Now it looks like it will be shortstop by committee next year with Blandino and Farmer etc etc.

    i was so excited when Hunter Greene was drafted. Best athlete since Eric Davis. we have our next Barry Larkin! then the reds have to screw it up and try to turn him into a starting pitcher !?!? then tommy John surgery and who knows if he will even make it to the majors. the reds have made a lot of blunders with player development but this one takes the cake in my opinion

    • Grand Salami

      I’d add a few years of Cozart stability in there.

  28. Grand Salami

    Can’t be mad at the Reds for letting either of those two go at that price or at Galvis since he was never a candidate in my opinion.

    Would like to know they made a 2 or 3 year deal to Didi that comes in at 12-15, even if they don’t get him.

    Bottom line, can roll with Garcia as long as I know they were true to there
    aim and made marketable offers for all other potential targets.

  29. Tom Mitsoff

    If a deal with Gregorius is not announced soon, it’s probably fair to say the Reds have drawn a line in the sand for how much they will pay him — and he wants more. There are a lot of question marks about him, making a multi-year deal (which he reportedly seeks) a risk.

    So here’s an idea:

    Sonny Gray and Jose Garcia to Toronto for Bo Bichette and lefthander Anthony Kay? Toronto gets a top of the rotation starter at a bargain price and a shortstop for the future (they won’t need Garcia this year because they signed Semien). Reds get a young star shortstop with five years of team control and a young lefty who could develop as a back of the rotation starter or in the bullpen. Reds shed payroll, perhaps allowing them to explore the free agent market for starting pitching help.

    • MK

      If they no longer believe AlfRod is a viable prospect then give him a shot. He can play big league defense no doubt. If he can hit .250 with no power, that is still an upgrade over 2020. And, in a season where money is tighter than normal it is for MLB minimum. As CoVid goes there might not be full fan capacity again in 2021. I’m sure they would love to show some benefit for their $7million investment on AlfRod.

      • Jack

        As you said he can handle the position defensively which, if they can’t afford Didi, is about all you are going to get. He can stay till Garcia progresses, assuming he does. They could go with Villar for offense but he isn’t a shortstop really, definitely not a good one which would negate his offense. The last option is a trade but there are so many possibilities it is hard to analyze.

    • RedsGettingBetter

      Would Blue Jays really trade Bichette?

    • Scott C

      Bichette can play a passable SS for now but probably more suited long term as a corner infielder.

  30. DataDumpster

    The Reds two biggest needs were satisfied in 2019 with Iglesias and 2020 with Bradley. Both were fairly priced but jettisoned with (apparently) no good plan on who to replace them with. The other big issue is David Bell and the hitting coaches, who were NOT jettisoned for perhaps the same reason.
    Expect no big moves and one extended exhibition season for the Reds as they clearly have not figured out how to move forward.
    My advice would be to attend a late season game or two seeing the Louisville Bats play. That’s where the action will be this season and probably the future of the Reds in 2022. “Wait till next year” again.

  31. MK

    Toronto signed Semien to play third base.

  32. indyRedsFan

    I just can’t believe the negativity here.

    1) People saying “start over and rebuild again.” Even without having signed a shortstop, projection systems have the Reds are winning the division.

    2) “They won’t sign anyone.” As noted, Gregorious and Villar are still out there.

    3) “they should have signed Semian”.. 18 million for a guy who has had one good (albeit Very good) season??

    4) “they should have signed simmons”……10.5 million for a Defense First shortstop who’s defense has declined the last few years???

    5) “They should have signed Galvis” Can you imagine how many heads of people who post here would have explode if they did that?

    Patience people. If they start the season with Farmer or anyone currently on the roster as starting SS, then feel free to whine….but until then…….

    • Jon

      That’s the fear among most of us…that the Opening Day SS will end up being Farmer…or Garcia…or Rodriguez…or some other bargain basement signing that can’t hit. And why shouldn’t it be? Krall has literally done nothing to earn confidence/trust from us fans. He has no previous experience as a GM. He dumped Bradley, a pitcher that went on to sign a larger contract than what he likely would have gotten in arbitration. This likely equals a wasted opportunity to gain prospects in a trade (and makes you further question Krall’s ability as GM).

      And even if the Reds are projected to win the division, does that really mean much when it’s the weakest division in baseball and all the teams in it have lost talent from 2020?

  33. Jon

    You have to wonder if Story is a realistic option for the Reds. It probably wouldn’t cost much in terms of prospects to get him due to his $18.5 million salary. If the Reds want to spend the money and toss a couple low level prospects to Colorado, that could get it done. Of course, “Reds” and “spend the money” are two things that normally don’t go in the same sentence, so there’s the issue.

  34. NYRedsfan

    Suarez and maybe a lower prospect to the Nationals for Kieboom and Garcia

  35. SteveLV

    I’d like the Reds to get to the point where they are consistently considered one of the top 12 or 14 top teams in baseball. In a good year, they are actually contenders for NLCS/WS, and in a bad year, they fall out of that top 14, but are immediately back to being considered in it the next year. If I were GM, that would be my definition of medium-term success.

    I think they are a notch below that right now – if they have a good year they could win this weak division, but I don’t think anyone thinks they will seriously challenge the best teams in the NL.

    I think they have 2 primary problems in taking that next step – Votto’s contract (and probably Moose’s) and the lack of a couple of home-grown, controllable stars who can take them to that next level.

    The only realistic way I see to fix that is to accept that they have to live through the big contracts, point at 2024 as the year, and turn Gray, Suarez, and Castillo into high-level prospects that will be here in 24, 25, and 26. Each would bring a sizable return and set them up for the future. If they keep them, they will just burn through the excess value of their contracts on teams that are mediocre.

    Permanently fluctuating between 72 and 85 wins, with no legitimate hope for better than that in the foreseeable future, sounds awful to me.

  36. west larry

    I guess the reds “plan” is that a shortstop drops into their arms at a severe discount. I don’t think that is happening. It’s all hands on deck, and Bell will be forced to play whomever from the reds rooster or farm system. What a disgrace.

    • TR#1

      Villar for 1 year and 6 million with 1-2 million in incentives. I feel like he’s going to be a Red.

      • Justin

        Krall’s comments today did not seem encouraging as to getting a FA ss signed. He even said that Garcia would be competing for a spot on the team. Goodbye hopes and dreams.

      • Jack

        I hope not. All offensive ability will be offset with bad defense at a premium defensive position.

  37. Kim Henry

    Let me toss this out there for your thoughts. Cleveland still needs outfielders. They just received two young shortstops for Lindor. Both appear better than what we have in house. My preference would be the RIGHT handed Rosario primarily for that reason. However, Giminez might fill the bill as well. We trade an outfielder for one of them. Rarely is there a one for one deal so it may need some creativeness.
    ?????

  38. burtgummer01

    Unfortunately I think most Reds fans are fully aware of of the lies that come from ownership and expected this
    They simply cannot be believed

  39. Hotto4Votto

    If they just go with Garcia it will mess with his development. Best case, they waste another year or two of control while he tries to figure things out. Worst case he’ll be so in over his head and so lost he can’t recover.
    If they go with Farmer, Alf-Rod, or Blandino they’re waving the white flag on the season.
    Krall needs to go out and earn his paycheck and figure out a signing or trade that works out to fill the SS that works and keeps the Reds (somewhat) competitive. Short of that, might as well trade Castillo, Gray, and Suarez and just start the newest rebuild.

  40. Chris Mo

    Farmer set a fielding record playing SS for his college team (I think it was Georgia, so SEC school). Now, that is college, not pro’s, but as long as he can make the plays most MLB SS are expected to make, I am good with that. Cheap, solid, not spectacular defense, maybe hit a little bit better getting to play every day. I think the net performance will be better than Galvis, without paying 10-15M a year for the free agents that were other options. I like the kid, would like to see him get a legit shot. I don’t think anybody expected Cozart to be what he became. Hope for the best. It’s a long season, hopefully he will end up being a bright spot.

    • Ghostrunneronthird

      Right on. I’m in the Farmer camp.

  41. Redsvol

    Sheesh, the negativity on here. Only 3 teams are spending money this year and we act like there are 27 teams spending money.
    Didn’t the Reds win more games than most last year? Didn’t the offense have a historically bad year while still winning more than most teams? Wasn’t the bullpen terrible for most of the year until the last 20 games while still winning more than most?
    I’m actually pretty optimistic for a good year from this team. The pitching is the key and we should feel good about the talent, coaching and analytics this team has. A 1-2 WAR shortstop isn’t going to change the prospects of this team.

    • west larry

      I hope hat you are right. My negativity stems from the fact that the reds are shedding salary and, so far, not adding to the talent. And the talk of trading Gray and/or Castillo is alarming, considering that we already have lost Bauer to free agency. And what do we do about the shortstop position?

    • Tom

      The Reds fattened up on the Pirates and a fading Brewers team down the stretch. Three weeks of winning baseball. Otherwise, they were overwhelmed by the Tigers at the beginning of the season. And, quite frankly were bad for 75% of the season. Take away Bauer from the pitching staff and add another year to Votto and Moose and what do you get? Probabaly a .500 team and short of the playoffs. Sorry, I am just not optimistic about this team given its offensive malaise and lack of athleticism. Agree, a league average SS is not going to change trajectory for this team.

  42. The promoter

    I think I may have to agree with the Farmer angle. With all of this going down, I went and looked at his defensive metrics and he was really good. Much better than $30 mill on Didi for two years. Would want to do one of two things:
    1. Put Farmer at SS and use money for SS (probably ($10 mil/yr or under I am assuming ) and go get another P (Ordorizzi, Wainwright (just to put it to the Cards), Hill or Walker or Rosenthal or Soria – I know very wide range but all have their plusses) or
    2. When LAD goes over luxury tax, work trade out with them for Chris Taylor (has 1 year at $8 mil). Should be able to get him fairly cheap if LAD truly wants to get back under luxury tax like they say. Taylor is a lot like Farmer but somewhat better defensively at SS and much better hitter.

    • Jack

      The Reds are not smart and have not been smart with their money for a while. The ownership pays plenty for talent evaluation and they swing and miss quite a bit. They overpaid for Votto, kept the wrong pitcher in Bailey, underperformed horribly last year, and think they will be better this year by subtracting the Cy Young winner, their closer, and their shortstop. If they had been paying attention, they would not have needed a free agent or bust- approach at shortstop. They could have traded for a serviceable shortstop. Their biggest issues are: Who is our other stud starter and who is our closer. They do not have to spend 15 million at shortstop to get a serviceable player. Iglesias would have been much cheaper at short.