Jocketty: Reds “not close” to extension with Brandon Phillips

12 Comments

Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips told reporters back in late-September that he would not be offering a “homeboy hookup” to Cincinnati once it came time to discuss terms for a new contract.

And he certainly seems to be sticking to that.

Reds GM Walt Jocketty told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com on Thursday that the two sides are “not close” to reaching an extension, meaning Phillips will likely enter the 2012 season as a free-agent-to-be.

Phillips, 30, is regarded as one of the top defensive second basemen in the major leagues and batted .300 with an .810 OPS, 18 home runs and 82 RBI in 674 plate appearances this year for the third-place Reds. He’s talented, durable and — with his beaming personality — capable of becoming a fan-favorite in any city.

Phillips will earn $12 million next season via a club option that was exercised at the end of October.