Saturday, December 12, 2015

If the Cincinnati Reds Keep Selling…

The rebuilding phase for the Cincinnati Reds really began back in July of 2015. The team was never on the brink of contention last season and ended the month of July by trading their two top starting pitchers in Johnny Cueto and Mike Leake. Cueto’s haul in terms of prospects was substantial when you figure that Brandon Finnegan came back in the trade from Kansas City while some usable pieces were also sent back to Cincinnati from the San Francisco Giants in the Leake trade. With Aroldis Chapman now heading to Los Angeles for two prospects the Reds now have no excuse not to finish cleaning out their roster and keeping selling.

If the Cincinnati Reds keep selling you have to think that the New York Yankees have to be in the long line of trade partners. With Chapman, Leake and Cueto now gone the team may turn their attentions to trading second baseman Brandon Phillips, first baseman Joey Votto, outfielder Jay Bruce and third baseman Todd Frazier. New York would presumably be interested in both Phillips and Frazier, although my personal preference would be to stay away from Phillips with his declining defense, offense and for my love of Robert Refsnyder, while the Yankees need another left-handed outfielder and first baseman like they need another hole in the head. Well that and the whole Starlin Castro thing although Castro could conceivably play third, Refsnyder play second and Headley be traded to San Diego for James Shields.

Phillips has a full no-trade clause as dies Votto so moving them would be tough, especially Votto with the money and the years left on his mega-deal, but the lure of winning could entice both, especially Phillips. Bruce and Frazier on the other hands could be dealt without their permission as we almost saw last July in the case of Bruce. The Yankees don’t need Bruce but how incredible, and expensive, would it be to land Todd Frazier?

Frazier hits home runs, he is a Jersey boy, plays a great defense at third base, would be ideal in this lineup and would free up the Yankees to move Chase Headley. Moving Headley and that contract not only makes the team more flexible financially but it makes the team younger, more versatile, better defensively and light years better offensively. Frazier, again, would be awfully expensive but he is the kind of trade you move a Jorge Mateo for in my opinion. Young, controllable, cheap and effective.

If the Yankees had to take Phillips in the trade along with Frazier to keep the prospect total down I can’t say I’d be terribly upset. Is it ideal? Well no, but it’s a risk worth taking in my opinion. Even at the, brace yourselves TGP fans, expensive of Mateo AND Robert Refsnyder. 

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)