The Reds just got swept by the Mets and looked terrible doing it. Despite lots of talent on hand, nothing has gelled for them so far this year, they’re five games under .500 and people are openly calling for them to cut bait and reload for next season and beyond. In the face of all of that, however, they are still giving off signs that they’re buying, not selling.
Specifically, Ken Rosenthal says that they’re openly courting the Astros for not just Hunter Pence, but Michael Bourn as well.
Bourn is having a fine year in center for Houston, but it seems odd that the Reds would give such a vote of no-confidence to Drew Stubbs. Sure, he’s struggled at times and Dusty Baker doesn’t like his strikeouts, but he’s a couple of years younger than Bourn and under team control longer.
The Reds just don’t seem to know what to do with themselves right now, do they?
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.