The Cincinnati Reds have been busy this week. They’ve signed reliever Emilio Pagan and picked up Nick Martinez, who may be able to join the rotation or fill a big void in the bullpen as a multi-inning option. All of this happened before the winter meetings, which will begin next week and is usually a time when teams really kick things into gear. And Cincinnati seems to still be on the prowl for more pitching. Jeff Passan of ESPN noted this morning that they are among the teams still looking for “frontline starting pitching” to add this offseason, adding that the club has what it takes to put together a package strong enough to entire the Chicago White Sox for starter Dylan Cease.

Passan doesn’t say that the Reds are necessarily in on Cease, just that Cease is a guy who could be available via a trade and that he fits what Cincinnati needs and is looking for. While the Reds have added some payroll in the past week with the signings of Pagan and Martinez, there should still be plenty of room for the club to add to it without it becoming any sort of issue as current projected payroll is just over $50,000,000.

While free agency is out there, it doesn’t seem that will be the road the Reds front office goes to if they are looking to add a frontline starter. We can have a debate on whether or not it makes any sense or if the club “can afford” it, but I would say that we all agree that they simply aren’t going to go looking to compete for $125,000,000+ contracts for a “frontline starter”. That just isn’t something they have historically done and is literally twice as high (or higher if you go beyond) as the largest free agent deal the club has ever handed out. To note, though, they have handed out 9-figure deals to two players who were already with the club – Joey Votto and Homer Bailey.

Everyone has phones in their pockets today, so it’s not like 1986 and trade talks were only happening during business hours when someone in the front office could pick up a phone when it rang at their desk. But things still do seem to move a little bit easier when everyone is together at the winter meetings.

113 Responses

  1. Jedi Joey

    This is the most excited I have been about a Reds’ off-season in several years. Get it done, Redlegs! Add some more pieces to what should be a fun 2024.

  2. LDS

    Cease or any of the younger starters would be a good choice if the price is right. It does seem, however, that the Reds approach to free agency needs to change, if they ever expect to be a competitive, post season team. I’m not sure they care. Years like last year are certainly profitable, and sometimes fun.

    • Erik the Red

      I agree with LDS comment on free agency however I was surprised by the amount that the Cardinals are paying over the next 3 years. Not sure an average $25M per year is much of a bargain for a guy in his late thirties and has a lot of risk.

  3. Brad

    I think Cease makes the most sense by far of the options being disused and the one I would be the most excited about.

    • Colorado Red

      I also like Cease, Would cost a bit, but the Reds have the depth to do it.
      Lots of team want him also.

  4. Redsfan11

    A solid starter and solid outfield bat is all the Reds need to get me to have hope again.

  5. MBS

    “but I would say that we all agree that they simply aren’t going to go looking to compete for $125,000,000+ contracts for a “frontline starter”

    I don’t know if I agree 100%. History is certainly on your side, but I think the Reds we’re deep in on Wheeler who was a $100M contract. They didn’t land him and dumped the money into Moustakas, and Castellanos right after. Now that was Dick W, and not Krall, but Bob is the holder of the checkbook.

    I really don’t care if we get a frontline starter via trade or FA, it’s just good to hear they are still out there trying.

    • BK

      I agree, I believe the Reds are willing to make a large commitment, but I doubt it will be for a age 30+ free agent. Yamamoto is the kind of player I could see them pursuing.

      That said, Wacha seems like a really nice fit for the Reds–a free agent is preferable. I could also see them going the trade route with Tampa, CWS, or Cleveland. I would also like to see them add a LHP reliever (Matsui, Peralta, Suter, maybe Chapman).

      • Robert Douglas

        The left handed relievers are a premium! I would like to see Chapman back in Cincinnati! He might need to lose a little weight!..

  6. Votto4life

    I would love to have Rodriguez or Cease. But, I would also be OK with Bieber and Michael Brantley. Brantley is a LH bat but hits left handed pitching well.

    • doofus

      Brantley is exactly the type of hitter the lineup needs. He knows how to hit the ball. Nice contact, does not swing at bad pitches. The youngsters could learn from him.

      • Old Big Ed

        They don’t need Brantley. He will be playing his age 37 season, off a season in which he played 15 games. (He played 64 games the prior season.) He can’t field very well anymore, and has played only 8 games in RF over the past 4 seasons. He is therefore relegated to LF and DH, but the Reds already have Steer in those two positions already, with Fraley (or maybe Benson) playing LF against most RH pitchers. Brantley has a career .840 OPS against RH pitchers, and is on the downside of his career. Fraley had a .815 OPS v. RH last season, and is in his prime. I don’t see what Brantley would bring offensively that the Reds do not already have.

        Brantley is essentially Joey Votto, except that Brantley can play below average LF, whereas Votto can play below average 1B.

        I don’t disagree that Brantley would be a nice veteran presence, but “veteranness” no more quantifiable than “grit.”

      • doofus

        Big Ed,

        Perhaps this will help>>> “(Insert another name here) is exactly the type of hitter the lineup needs.”

        You totally swung and missed. The focus of my comment was “the type of hitter the lineup needs.”

      • Mario

        doofus, you mentioned Brantley. Say what you mean and mean what you say. If you didn’t mean Brantley, you shouldn’t have used his name. Tell us who you want. I vote for Soler on a 2 year deal maybe 35-40 million. I doubt he comes in cheaper in this crazy market. I would not commit to playing him 150 games. Maybe 120-130.

  7. Optimist

    I thought they’d go for Sonny at 3/60M, and think the Cards may have overpaid a bit. Agree that it’s better to focus on the under-30 crowd rather than 100M+ for top tier older starters.

    That said, I still think they get a top starter via trade. They’ll look to add a power bat via FA – less risk and lower AAV there.

  8. Mark S.

    Go big and trade for both Glasnow and Arozarena! Glasnow and Arozarena would come much cheaper than sayCease and Robert (all are available). One can dream!


    Get Cease then sign Soler as a DH/occasional spot start in LF

  9. J

    I really want this team to add a proven starter, but I really do NOT want to see them give away a promising young pitcher to get a good older pitcher whose contract is going to stop them from signing anyone else for 2024 who’s any good. That older pitcher will probably get hurt pretty soon, and then he’ll be a free agent in a year or two, having accomplished almost nothing for this team. Meanwhile, the young pitcher the Reds give away will be the the Cy Young runner-up in 2026. There are plenty of trades I could get behind, but there are also a lot of trades I’d hate.

    • doofus

      The older hitter will probably get hurt, but the traded youngster will be Cy Young?

      Of course all Red’s pitching prospects are Cy Young prodigies. How silly of me.

      • J

        You seem to be missing the point here…

    • Daniel Kals

      I hear you, but I will eat my shorts if Brandon Williamson, Andrew Abbott, or Connor Phillips are Cy Young contenders in 2026. Frankly, I’m not sure there’s a pitcher in the Reds system who profiles as a 2026 Cy Young contender right now. If I had to place a bet on any current Reds pitcher at any level to win the Cy Young… I’d put 10 cents on Lodolo, I guess… maybe 5 cents.

      • Mario

        I’d vote for Abbott and Greene getting Cy Young votes at some point in the next 3-4 years.

    • BK

      @J, I agree. The Reds need to make an honest effort to build a sustainable winning product. That doesn’t happen by regularly trading future value for present value.

    • JayTheRed

      Young players can get hurt just as easy as older players. It’s mostly good or bad luck when it comes to an injury.

      • J

        They all get hurt. All the time. This is why I’m in favor of adding a pitcher without subtracting a pitcher. I’m concerned about not having enough decent pitchers in 2024, 2025, 2026, 2027…. I’m less concerned about infielders. I think the Reds have more than enough of those for the next few years.

      • Old Big Ed

        No, they can’t. Old players are more prone to missing games than younger players. Ask Joey Votto or Ken Griffey, Jr. or Johnny Bench, or Clayton Kershaw.

        Sure, a young hitter can get his hands and wrists busted by fastballs just as easily as an old hitter, or a pitcher hit by a line drive, but the older players are much more susceptible to the wear and tear problems that slow players down and make up most of the undefeated aging curve.

        I would agree that pitchers have a different aging curve than hitters, because the main physical demand of pitchers is to perform a repeatable motion (somewhat akin to a golfer), whereas position players are required both as hitters and defenders to react instantly to a ball in motion. A pitcher can still be effective after his mid-30s, but only the unicorns like Ryan and Verlander can do so as a power pitcher.

  10. BK

    @Jim Walker brought up the Red’s overreliance on platoons in the outfield. The Athletic ran an article in June targeted at fantasy league players. At the time, most MLB teams had at least one platoon, and about half a dozen had more than one, including the D-Backs. Having two positions filled with platoon players is atypical.

    Fraley and Benson have significant splits–it’s pretty clear why the Reds want to platoon them. But both players deliver well above-average hitting against RHP, accounting for over seventy percent of PAs over an entire season.

    Last season, the Reds paired one of them with Senzel. Senzel also has extreme splits. This left the Reds vulnerable to pitching changes late in games. On paper, he’s the perfect platoon partner, but in reality, having two players with extreme splits was relatively easy for opposing managers to exploit, mainly when the Reds carried three catchers well into the season.

    Steer will get most of the RH platoon at-bats as the roster sits today for either Fraley or Benson. This worked well in 2023 and should work well in 2024. Regardless of the pitcher’s handedness, you don’t need to PH for Steer. Fairchild likely picks up the remaining weak side of the platoon. Fairchild has reverse splits, and they are pretty narrow. If a team were to bring in an RHP to face him, that would help Fairchild a bit. In short, the Reds have much better fits for the weak side of two platoons. Steer and Fairchild have delivered much better results against LHP than Fraley and Benson and can’t be exploited by RHP like Senzel was. Fairchild is on par with Fraley defensively, and with modest improvement, Steer is on par with Benson. All four players have good speed and average arms that work in either corner OF slot. Steer easily could hold down a corner OF spot if Fraley or Benson were injured. Fairchild would be serviceable in CF or if both Fraley and Benson were injured at the same time. Moreover, there will be multiple outfield options at AAA.

    In short, I expect the two platoons to work better in 2024. The weakest link is likely Fairchild. Fangraphs ranked him #105 of all MLB outfielders with 100 PA. He’s a number #4 OF (#5 OF on Reds) who has two seasons of showing he can deliver good results off the bench–not true of every player. For these reasons, an RH-hitting outfielder remains well behind the priority of acquiring at least two more pitchers.

    • AllTheHype

      Assuming Steer is the RHH platoon for Fraley against LHP, then I also assume you have Steer as 1B/DH (with CES) against RHP.

      Assuming that, then who is the other side of 1B/DH (with CES) against LHP when Steer is in OF? That could be India. But then, if India is traded or we have an injury in IF, we are back to needing a RHH platoon bat for that spot?

      • BK

        I see Steer and CES playing every day–save the occasional day off. Steer would do much like last year, playing infield and outfield. Having India and Steer allows the Reds to rest their regulars occasionally or start more often when there is an injury. The Reds will have Dunn, Hinds, and Hurtubise at AAA. While I don’t expect them all to be on the 40-man roster by the time ST starts, Barrero, Hopkins, Thompson, and Martini are all on the 40-man roster right now. The Reds have good position player depth.

    • Charles

      Don’t be too hard on the number of platoons. Sparky Anderson in the early years of the Big Red Machine had at least two in some years. Namely 1970. Lou Pinella had 4 in 1990-catcher, right field, second base and first base. It all depends on strength of personnel.

      • doofus

        Please elaborate on Sparky’s Platoons.


        C- Joe Oliver played 118 games behind the plate. That is normal not a platoon.

        RF- Who did Paul O’Neill platoon with?

        2B- Mariano Duncan played the majority at 2B because Billy Doran was injured most of the year.

        1B- Yeah, Todd Benzinger and Hal Morris platooned at 1B.

        That seems to be 1, not 4 platoon situations.

      • Oldtimer

        Sparky. 1970. LF Carbo and McRae. SS Concepcion and Woodward.

        Sparky. 1972. SS Concepcion and Chaney. LF McRae and Foster.

        There were others.

      • Oldtimer

        PS Griffey and Foster in 1974.

        Concepcion/Woodward and Carbo/McRae also in 1971.

      • Votto4life

        Sparky did platoon some but he did talk about the virtues of a set line up. But, not too managers had that many hall of famers or All Stars as the BRM.

      • Oldtimer

        The Reds “Great 8” started 80 games together from May 1975 through 1976 season. Reds played about 260 games in that timeframe.

        Sparky said no such thing.

      • IndyRedsFan


        Concepcion/Woodward was not a platoon. They both batted right-handed.

      • Oldtimer

        Yes, it was. They split the SS position equally in 1970 and 1971.

        You don’t have to bat differently to be part of a platoon.

      • Oldtimer

        Yes. it was. Concepcion and Woodward shared SS in 1970 and 1971.

      • Votto4life

        Old timer Sparky and the set line up is discussed in the 1976 recording “This one belongs to the Reds”. I no longer have a copy of the recording, but I’m sure it is somewhere on line.

      • doofus

        Given that a platoon is matching a (L) hitter against a righthanded starting pitcher and (R) hitter against a lefthanded starter.

        Games Started
        Concepcion: 74-SS
        Woodward: 70-SS, 5-2B, 1-3B

        Carbo: 109-LF
        McRae: 41-LF, 3-3B

        Concepcion: 86-SS, 4-2B
        Woodward: 65-SS, 7-2B, 7-3B

        Carbo: 88-LF
        McRae: 58-LF, 24-CF

        Concepcion: 107-SS
        Chaney: 47-SS

        Concepcion: 86-SS

        Griffey: 66-RF
        Foster: 23-RF, 42-CF

        The only true platoon that I see is Carbo (L) and McRae (R).

        Both Concepcion and Woody batted (R). In the early years Concepcion’s bat was sketchy, but his “D” was GG worthy. Sparky was probably trying to get some hits from the SS position when Woody started, even though he only hit .223 and .242 in ’70 and ’71, respectively.

        I believe that Concecpcion broke his leg in ’73.

        1972 looks like a platoon, but Concepcion (R) started much more than Chaney (L). With more righthanded pitchers, it would seem that Chaney would have started more games at SS if it was a true platoon.

        1974 was Griffey’s second year in the leaugue. He probably still qualified as a rookie, as he had only 23 games and 92 PA’s in 1973. If I remember correctly, he came up later in the year in 1974. So it is, possible that Foster was platooned with someone else?

      • Reaganspad

        Sparkey’s platoons were more in the bullpen. In an era of 4 starters who threw 300 innings, he was Captain Hook.

        1990 was full of platoons except for Larkin and Sabo

        Barry Larkin played 158 games with 614 abs. Sabo had 567. O’Neil and Hatcher had 503. Braggs played in 72 games and had 200 abs in RF. Eric the Red, 127 games 450 abs with Herm Winningham 84, 160 abs
        Jeff Reed 72 games, 175 abs.
        Duncan 125 games, 435 abs.

        Luis Quinones 83 games 145 abs also platooned 2nd base with Billy Doran 17 games, 59 abs

    • Justin T

      I think the jury is out on if the Reds have good position depth. Certainly have alot of players to choose from but where is the history of production from most of them? Fielding a team full of question marks is what scares me.

    • Chris

      I’m sorry, but if we are relying on Fairchild for anything, including a bench bat, then we blew it this offseason.

  11. west larry

    Solar and Bieber or Cease works for me. I think two of those makes them the favorite to win the central! Go Reds!

    • E

      I would absolutely love Soler + one of Giolito, Cease, or Beiber.

      No idea why more reds fans don’t show an interest in Soler. Dude could crush 50 bombs for us next year.

      • BK

        First, Soler is well below average defensively/almost unplayable on the field. To maximize his value, he must be the everyday DH. Carrying a player limited to DH looks good on paper but has negative implications throughout a long season when injuries hit.

        Second, are you willing to spend the dollars to bring him in and play him twice weekly (RH platoon bat opposite Fraley or Benson)? If he’s going to DH full-time, who sits except for a couple of games a week (probably India)? Is either option worth a contract in the 3/45 range projected by given? A healthy India gets close to Soler’s offensive production but does so in different ways.

        In sum, not a great fit and the resources are likely better used improving the pitching staff. That said, if a position player is traded, Soler looks like a better fit.

      • JayTheRed

        I’d rather have Teoscar Hernandez than Solar. Yes, Hernandez does not have amazing defense but he is better than Solar.

      • Bob Purkey

        I am not much for Soler – he just strikes out too much. The Reds have a ton of guys who don’t put the bat on the ball consistently.

    • MBS

      Soler would be awesome, I think his ability to hit in the DH should be a positive, not a negative. DH imo isn’t a spot to give guys a semi day off. It’s important to get the most out of those AB over a 162 game stretch.

      • BK

        CES hit well as a DH … I think Soler is a fine DH, but it’s absolutely a negative that he can’t cover a defensive position even for a few days without costing his team runs. As I stated above, who does he displace and is it worth the value of his contract compared to other needs?

      • doofus

        Sign Michael Brantley to DH for the next 2 years. He knows how to hit. Makes contact. Does not strikeout. He can show the young guys how to be a true hitter.

  12. sultanofswaff

    Emmanuel Clase from Cleveland is apparently is being shopped and the Reds are listed as one of the interest teams. He has multiple years of control left and has already signed a team friendly extension. The prospect cost would be high–probably a one of our young starting pitchers as well as a top prospect. In the absence of a splashy top of the rotation starter acquisition this would be a wonderful fallback option. The Brewers showed how many wins an average team with an excellent bullpen can rack up in the regular season.

    • CI3J

      Clase and Diaz would make a formidable backend of the bullpen. That said, I’m not sure the Reds should do that. Closers are always overpriced.

      They could probably trade for a non-closer bullpen piece from another team and get about the same thing Clase would provide while paying a lot less.

    • LarkinPhillips

      I mentioned this earlier on a different thread, pondering what it would take to get it done. I would love to see a Beiber/Clase deal to be the bow on the top of the offseason. Maybe a package of India, Fraley, a younger starter, and a 20-30 level prospect pitcher like Aguiar or Acuna could get that done? Saves Cleveland money, improves the current team with Fraley and India, and helps them for the future? Maybe an overpay on our side? I have no clue…. But an addition of Bieber and Clase would solidify our staff and make the bullpen very deep in my opinion.

      • Optimist

        The Clase report is interesting. It sets up all sorts of multi-player and multi-team deals. Good for the tribe for hinting at it.

        Still want to follow a policy of not moving top prospects (say top 10-15) or existing players under age 25, but including Clase will likely require something in that range.

      • BK

        @Optimist, I agree. The Reds can shore up the roster through free agency. Prospect trades shorten the competitive window and lead to rebuilds–something the Reds should work very hard to avoid.

  13. RedsGettingBetter

    Reds acquiring Soler/Gurriel Jr as a OF RHH and landing or trading for a #2/#3 starter is turning the team quite better than 2023 so it would put the Reds in a 90 or 92-win season to 2024

    • JayTheRed

      Gurriel Jr. is also someone I would be good with the Reds getting.

  14. Greenfield Red

    The 40 man sits at 39. I would like to see them add one more pitcher either medium grade starter (I’m on the Giolito bandwagon… big bounce back candidate) or a high leverage reliever preferably a left hander.

    It seems counterproductive to trade India or one of the current young starters for that guy. They would be giving up productive current players with 3 or more years of control for DC or TG who both have huge question marks as to how good they will be.

    This needs to be another free agent on a 2 to 3 year deal, with opt outs if needed. Brings me back to Giolito.

    All my opinion of course.

    • AllTheHype

      Yeah Giolito does make a lot of sense. mlbtraderumors has him pegged for about 2/$44M. Before his second half swoon, he was thought to be in line for 5/100 or more.

      Buying his age 29-30 seasons as a bounce back candidate and potential QO/draft pick when he walks is not a bad plan, really.

  15. gusnwally

    BK makes a good point about platooning. For those of you who do not relish platooning, consider this. Casey Stengal was a huge proponent, and I think it worked out pretty good for him. Sure he had Mickey and Maris in CF and RF. But Tony Kubek played all inf positions and many games in the OF Also Hecto Lopez, Yogi Berra , Elston Howard, Clete Boyer, Norm Siebern. They all played to thier strengths every day. Not saying a hard hitting OF would not be helpful. But, I think we actually have most everything pretty well covered. Now, I realize that we have the David Bell situation in play. But, we can hope that he could make it work.

  16. DW

    I would love to see a trade for Logan Gilbert. Apparently Blake Snell really wants to sign with the Mariners, who are already starting pitcher heavy. The Mariners are weak around the infield, which is an obvious strength to trade from for the Reds. If they do sign Snell, then another trade with the Mariners could be a great fit.

    • AllTheHype

      A Logan Gilbert trade would be very painful in terms of what prospects we send back. Due to 4 years of remaining control left, he has much more value than Castillo did when we shipped him to Seattle. At that time, we got Marte and Arroyo for Castillo plus others. For Gilbert, we’re probably looking at a Marte, Arroyo, & Phillips type package, at a minimum. Maybe more. You can mix and match comparable quality players from the Reds side, but that’s an idea of the type of commitment it would take to get Gilbert.

      • Greenfield Red

        That would blow a hole in this year’s roster and in future rosters for one starter who could get hurt or falter. That seems to go against the very idea of this rebuild. I would be highly disappointed at that trade. The Reds got Marte and Arroyo for a reason. Add in Phillips too. No thanks to this or anything similar unless the Reds are getting the second coming of Babe Ruth.

      • AllTheHype

        Agree. This type of deal is not what we need.

        Cease might be more attainable though, but probably still somewhat painful.

      • doofus

        How about get Matt Brash to really fortify the pen and Hancock for a future rotation piece for Steer and Petty.

        Add another solid rotation piece to fortify the young starters.

        Sign Michael Brantley to DH.

        Or, go nuts and deal for Cease and Robert. The Reds have the horses to get that deal done.

  17. redfanorbust

    Re Cease I heard report that White Sox going to wait till after the big name SP are off the board thus insuring that they will get a bigger haul. Not sure what it would cost the Reds maybe Richardson/India/Benson? Probably too much for a pitcher who might return to his 2022 form. I don’t trade for one year of Glasnow unless it comes with an extension as Rays will want too much back. I hope somehow, someway the Reds find the boldness to really go for it and sign Edwardo Rodriguez and Teoscar Hernández total expenditure about $40M AAV. That would put the Reds at just around league average for team salaries. Then no need to go out and get a relief pitcher as one of the many starters they have left can transition there i.e. Williams.

  18. Chris

    First Trade for Beiber, but don’t extend him.
    Then, open up the wallets and give Ohtani whatever he wants for the next 5 years. 5 years, 300 mil? 325? We may already be, but then we’d definitely be, the most exciting team in baseball.
    We’d have a top of the rotation starter this year and a stud DH, then in 2025 Ohtani just takes Beiber’s spot in the rotation and we keep rolling.
    Make it happen!
    (Don’t worry, I know it’s a pipe dream, but I’m betting they could afford it if they wanted to)

    • greenmtred

      Didn’t I hear that Ohtani injured himself late in the season? Maybe TJ surgery? Speculation that he wouldn’t pitch much going forward? Maybe I dreamed it.

      • AllTheHype

        Not TJ, but some undisclosed procedure. Only DH for 2024, no pitching.

      • Chris

        That’s why I was thinking they could trade for Bieber to pitch in ‘24, but not extend him in hopes that Ohtani would be recovered and ready to pitch again in ‘25. But we’d still have his bat in ‘24

      • Old Big Ed

        It would a rational decision for a team not to pay $60 million/year for a DH.

    • Optimist

      Ohtani is not taking a 5 year deal, almost regardless of price.

      • MBS

        IDK 5Y $350M is very strong, that’s a $70M AAV, no one in baseball is even close to that. I think he’ll end up signing a 7Y for $385, and I’d be in on that deal. This $500M speculation made more sense when his pitching future wasn’t in question.

      • Greenfield Red

        Reds could offer 2/140 with an opt out. Let him get his feet wet in MLB. Payroll would be around 140M.

        Not saying I’m for it, but it would be better than trading away a bunch of guys for DC or TG.

      • Greenfield Red

        My mistake. I thought this was about the new Japansese pitcher.

    • JayTheRed

      I know I am going to get a lot of slack for this, but I don’t want Ohtani… Takes way to much of our small town payroll to pay just one player. I would rather have 3, 4, or even 5 really solid players for the money that Ohtani is going to command.

  19. AllTheHype

    Lot of talk about Beiber here, but he is not a front line starter anymore. He is more a back end guy, and a risky one at that.

    Bieber is a soft tosser now, with way below league avg velo (91.6 vs 94.3 in 2020). His hard hit % jumped in ’23. He’s a shadow of his former Cy Young self.

    He’s not the guy the Reds need for sure.

    • Jimbo44CN

      Finally someone I can agree with. I would rather see Wade Miley come back.

    • doofus

      Bieber in 2022 threw 200 innings (2nd most in his career) with a 2.88 ERA and averaged 91.5 mph on his heater. I do not think Greg Maddux averaged over 90 mph in any season…yet he knew how to pitch.

      Geez, imagine a true hurler who knows how to PITCH alongside the Red’s young guns.

      • AllTheHype

        Imagine a guy with these peripherals

        Bieber ’22 vs ’23
        exit velo: 89.9/91.6
        hard hit % 43.1/47.8

        k% last 4 years

        xSlg last 4 year

        You can see he’s declining year over year over year over year, and his rate of decline accelerated in ’23 over ’22.

        ’23 was not an aberration. Rather a continuation of a bad four year trend. I’m sure all teams, incl the Reds, are looking under the hood at these trends.

      • doofus

        I do not know what Shane Bieber’s xyz, xoba, horoscope sign is. He knows how to pitch. Like I said Greg Maddux’s “analytical” numbers were not fashionable, but he certainly got the job done.

        Geez, with respect, some of you guys really miss the mark.

      • Tom Diesman

        Pretty much everyone knows he knows how to pitch. The question is, “Is he healthy?”. Nobody wants to pay and estimated 12M salary along with prospects for one year of damaged goods. He’s thrown 96 IP, 200 IP, and 128 IP the last three years. Shoulder issues in 2021 and elbow issues in 2023. Bring him on if he’s healthy. But all signs say buyer beware.

      • Old Big Ed

        Somebody will always bring up Maddux when the pitcher in question has an iffy fastball.

        For starters, Maddux had 200+ IP in 18 of 19 seasons. He had 199 in the other season. In his age 28 season, he had an OPS+ of 271. Bieber is coming off his age 28 season, in which he recorded an OPS of 110, in 128 IP. Maddux is a unicorn, and as Sparky said about Johnny Bench, you needn’t not compare any pitcher to Greg Maddux.

        Greg Maddux had better command than any pitcher who ever lived.

        Having an iffy fastball does not make a guy comparable to Greg Maddux. Maddux did not even have an iffy fastball. He threw plenty hard when he was younger, but he almost never threw the ball as hard as he could, which is part of the reason why he won 18 Gold Gloves, and why he averaged an incredible 32 starts/season over 23 years.

        Here is Maddux’s Baseball Reference page; no part of it suggests Shane Bieber.

        Trading for Bieber might work out, but the Maddux comp is not useful.

  20. G in Fla

    Not sure if this means anything but Cleveland opened a spot on their 40 by trying to sneak Oscar Gonzalez thru waivers (whom the Yankees claimed). Might they be acquiring multiple players they have to make room for?

    • AllTheHype

      Rule 5 draft is next Wed. Most teams want to be at 39 or less prior to rule 5 so they have flexibility to select a player if need be.

  21. Mark

    Regarding India – would he be willing to go to the bench after starting for 3 years. Yes, he would be backup at 2nd and possibly 3rd while also being in the DH mix. I just don’t see him being excited about not being a regular anymore. It will also hamper his future earning potential. He seems to be sought by other clubs so if I were in Krall’s position, I would demand more in return than he is worth. At worst, if he is willing to be a part time starter, he could be traded next summer to a team that may have lost their 2nd basemen to injury.

  22. Redhaze

    Wish list #1-Sign Snell, Bellinger and Joe Kelly then trade India and Friedl to the White Sox for Dylan Cease.
    #2-Sign Montgomery, Kelly and Duvall then trade India and a prospect for Cease.
    #3-Trade for Glasnow and Sign Duvall and Kelly.

    • Greenfield Red

      How do you replace India and Friedl? That puts two massive holes in the lineup… for a guy coming off a poor year? No thanks.

  23. Justin T

    The amount of injuries this team has with pitchers who are so young is eye opening. Hunter Greene and Lodolo are really young guys and to have those kind of injuries at their age leads one to believe the approach on young pitching development needs to change.

    Also the plate discipline young guys have when they come to Cincinnati is not very good, tremendous amount of strikeouts on balls out of the zone. EDLC is one of many who just seem like their weaknesses get weaker as the season goes along. For those reasons, I would rather see proven veterans than the Reds trying to develop young players.

  24. Votto4life

    Just came back from Redsfest. Pretty good time. Martinez, Pagan and Bubba Thompson were there. No Fraley. India was there though.

      • Votto4life

        Yes Dan they picked up Bubba Thompson up a few weeks ago.

  25. doofus

    I read some of this stuff and realize why Mancuso left this board.

  26. Red-hot

    I’m super excited about this group of firey ballplayers! It’s been longer than I care to elaborate on since I could actually brag about the whole group. With that said, Nick Krall needs to make a deal happen with the Guardian’s obviously centered around Shane Beiber and Johnathan India. I think Shane could be had for a package of Johnathan India, Levi Stroud, and Austin Hendricks. Might seem like a lot but Shane is quiet affordable considering the market and is on record saying he will sign an extension! You add Shane to the Frontline of our pitching staff as well as sign either Lourdes Jr or Joc Pedersen depending on lefty right splits and I believe the Red’s would definitely be in late playoff conversations with a real chance to win it all! We are counting on you Nick make it happen brother! -Red-hot

  27. Melvin

    Seems like they want to “have their cake and it too” so to speak. Never met anyone like that before. Only me and the rest of the entire world. haha 😀 They want to improve the team without dipping into free agency with the big bucks but they don’t want to give up many if any prospects. Good luck with that. lol

  28. Michael B. Green

    I really like that we are focus on an SP anchor. Things are definitely looking up. I hope that we play the same style as ball as we did in the first half of last year – all heart and hustle. Steal bases like crazy. When the homers started to come for us, that is actually when we started losing games. And quit babying our pitchers!

    • VegasRed

      Phils want to tradeCastellanos with substantial pay down of his contract. Maybe $6-8 million a year from the $20 he makes. There is your middle of the order bat and new team leader in the dugout.

      Sign Lugo or Wacha and keep all the prospect capital. Get Sumter for lhprp and bingo, new team with depth on offense and defense. Trade Casty when Hinds or Dun. Are ready for the bigs.

  29. RedFuture

    I would not mind the Reds to bring back Tyler Mahle next season. He last pitched in April of 2023 with the Twins so I assume he had his TJ surgery by early May. He might be just what they need when they most need it, after the all-star break. He pitched 180 innings with 3.75 ERA, 200+ SO and a 13-6 record in 2021 for the Reds.

    • Old Big Ed

      I agree. As a practical matter, though, the Reds can’t count on a pitcher coming off a May TJ surgery to contribute much in 2024. Maybe by about Labor Day, and probably in relief only.

      If they could give him a 2-year contract with some options, it might work out. He is a SoCal native, though, so he may prefer to be out west.

  30. Sam

    How bad do the Reds need a TOR pitcher? If they were in game one of the playoffs, look down the roster and find an ace to start. Not there, imo. Go get one.