UPDATE: Reds drawing “heavy interest” in Aroldis Chapman and Johnny Cueto

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UPDATE: FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that the Reds are drawing “heavy interest” in Chapman and Johnny Cueto. It’s believed that the Reds are trying to drop around $17 million in payroll this offseason, so trade talks should continue. Jay Bruce, Mike Leake, Mat Latos, and Alfredo Simon are among the other potential candidates to be dealt.

12:19 p.m. ET: There hasn’t been a word about Aroldis Chapman during the hot stove season. Before now. From Joe Frisaro of MLB.com:

Since finding the ideal starter isn’t easy, perhaps the Marlins should consider building a super bullpen. If they are leaning that way, Aroldis Chapman would be a logical option.

We don’t know if the Marlins are thinking this way, but what is clear is the Reds are open to trading Chapman, their fireball-throwing lefty closer.

So I guess it’s clear.

The Reds are certainly looking to shed payroll and want to make deals to do it. They’ve been reported to be shopping Jay Bruce and any one of three starting pitchers. But before now no one suggested Chapman could be on the block.

It’s not like he makes a ton of money — he’s only owed $5 million in 2015 — so you’d figure he’d bring a big return. But at the same time, it’s not like moving him would solve the Reds’ alleged payroll concerns.

If they do trade Chapman, I figure it’s safe to say that the Reds are going all-in with a rebuild instead of a mere shuffling of top-end talent.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.