Ludwick declines option

As expected, outfielder Ryan Ludwick declined his $5 million mutual option for 2013 with the Reds and became a free agent on Wednesday. For the mutual option to have kicked in, both the club and player had to exercise. (Added info: I neglected to mention that the buyout is worth $500,000)

Ludwick signed a one-year, $2.5 million deal with the Reds in January and became a relative bargain with a bounceback year. He batted .275/.346/.531 with 26 homers and 80 RBIs. He obviously wants to see if he can parlay this year into a multi-year contract at market value.

Therein lies the rub for the Reds. Ludwick is 34 and paying market value for someone of that age for multiple years could be tough on the budget. Both sides have said in the waning days of the season that they wanted Ludwick to remain in Cincinnati. He’s told me before how much he likes the city and the team, but as always with free agents…we’ll have to wait and see how much weight that carries as offers come in.

UPDATE: I spoke with GM Walt Jocketty about Ludwick and have a full version on MLB.com. Read it by clicking here. Jocketty has spoken to Ludwick’s agent as well as the agents for Ryan Madson, Dioner Navarro and Jonathan Broxton. All four players are interested in returning.

“I don’t know if we’ll get to sign all of them,” Jocketty said.

10 Comments

The Reds are becoming the leagues revitalize your career here destination. Seems like Cincy has excelled at this over the years. Ron Gant, Josh Hamilton, Rolen of sorts, Gomes. I wonder if any other team even comes close to taking a project player and revitalizing their careers. Our training staff must be tops in the majors to pull this off what seems like year after year.

I agree with dp, and I must say that I get tired of seeing former Reds excelling on other teams. You get tired of being the stepping stone to a better contract. I’d love to see Ludwick stick around the next few years, but at his age I would be leery of another Rolen situation where he sits as much as he plays.

I’m confused about LF. I hear that we need a rent-a-player for the position for next year, and then Hamilton will be up. But – Hamilton’s playing CF in the Arizona League. Is he going to play LF in the majors? Or is Stubbs the man out? If the latter, then the Reds need a *permanent* solution in LF, which is a whole different problem from whether or not they re-sign Ludwick. So, like I say, I’m confused.

what about revitalizing a guy like grady sizemore, he shouuldnt be that bad on price?

That is a great idea actually I could see him in a Reds uniform.

That is who I want. It will cost nothing, but you have to go after someone else too incase it doesnt work. Sizemore will cost 1 mil if that. Maybe grab Melky Cabrera or I would like to see them go after Delmon Young. I think another idea could be trading for Wells if the Angels will eat most of that contract. I think there are a lot of options out there.

on second thought. Reading his mlb injury report is pretty ugly”
” Over the past four years, the 30-year-old Sizemore has undergone operations on his back, left elbow and both knees, along with a pair of sports hernia procedures. Most recently, Sizemore had lower back surgery in March.”

Sounds like Scott Rolen X10

yeah but the money and expectations of a sizemore will not be the same as a rolen take him off the heap scrape him off and see whats underneath! if he put up numbers like he did previous to the last two years he wouldnt be a revitalized project?

Good points but only if the price is cheap, because yeah I’m guessing all the big pocket teams won’t even bat their eyes at this guy.

Ya, but have you seen his girlfriend?

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