Free agency is here

With the World Series over, the Hot Stove season has really started. Players eligible to be free agents are automatically on the market now — there is no need to file as part of the previous rules.

Here is the list of Reds free agents:

OF Shin-Soo Choo; RHP Bronson Arroyo; LHP Zach Duke; INF Cesar Izturis; LHP Manny Parra; RHP Nick Masset.

Click here for my Reds off-season outlook. The Reds will make an attempt to re-sign Choo, but the odds of success are long.

And on, Doug Miller provides a league-wide primer for this winter’s free agent class. Click here to read that piece.


Shoo might be an opportunity to at least make a good try at. Doubtful though.

Zach Duke, C’ya later.

Cesar Izturis, serviceable I guess.

Manny Parra, Keep him. He earned a roster spot here, especially if Sean Marshall falls back again.

Nick Masset. This chapter should be mercifully ended. If he was a horse they would have shot him two years ago.

Bronson Arroyo. Hate to say it but it’s time to cut ties with a guy who served this team admirably. He was worth way more than a Willie Mo Pena. Use the savings to get a RH left fielder who hits for power, like Josh Willingham. Or, sign Choo and put him in LF and Billy Hamilton in CF. Besides, without Bronson maybe they avoid 2 or 3 more losses to St. Louis. Let’s face it, that matchup was Bambi vs. Godzilla.

Here is my take:
OF Shin-Soo Choo – way too expensive, wants multiple year contract (4 or 5 years) for $11-$13m per. Don’t waste time; the decision has already been made.
RHP Bronson Arroyo, LHP Zach Duke, INF Cesar Izturis, RHP Nick Masset –
let them all go.
LHP Manny Parra – resign; s/b fairly inexpensive and the manager cured him.
Then, move JJ to closer and either move Chapman to SP or trade him while value is high and he is approaching year 5 of 6 years and current salary is a plus ($3m – 2014). We should be able to get a very good SP, LF, CF, SS or 3B for Chapman, in addition to some salary relief. If we put Chapman into the SP squad, there may not be enough room; Cueto, Latos, Bailey, Leake, Cingrani, so someone or something must be done (Cingrani back down, trade either Bailey or Leake). The rumor on the street is that Bailey won’t sign another contract with the Reds after his final 2014 season, and what kind of SP Leake will be this coming season is anyone’s guess.
As always, we are outside the fish bowl looking in, so many other activities such as trading Phillips could be challenged in the backgrounds. What I do know is that the way this team is plated, they won’t make it too far into the playoffs as history has shown us. SP and BP were terrific; situational hitting and just plain batting averages were quite dismal and disappointing.

Sorry, I am greedy, I want Choo, Arroyo, and Parra back. All three have proved their value to this team. The loss of Choo and/or Arroyo would be a step back and lessen the strength of this team. I know on paper we have a lot of decent starters but I have followed this game to long to not know that one or two injuries changes everything especially as shown by what happened to us this year with the injuries we had. If Chapman is made a starter are we going to get 200 innings out of him like Bronson, IMHO. no we won’t. That puts a strain on the bullpen and then a domino effect takes over on the strength of the pitching staff. I can’t get into the cost of the players because I have no idea what the Reds can spend or if Mr. C. has a “rainy day” account for keeping or going after “special” players.

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