Mar 14, 2012; Goodyear, AZ, USA; Cincinnati Reds pitcher Aroldis Chapman (54) throws during the first inning against the San Diego Padres at Goodyear Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESSWIRE

Kurkjian’s BBTN Bus Tour and BP Trade Rumor Produce Unwelcome News


I’m on the confident side that many of you read Tim Kurkjian’s post about the BBTN Bus Tour that hit Goodyear. Within his post, he revealed some “new info” that many Reds fans may not have heard. There were two which were mentioned on Cincinnati’com’s Unsportsmanlike Conduct. These two “events”: Aroldis Chapman is slated for the bullpen and a contract for Brandon Phillips will be done by Opening Day.

I have not heard or read either of these points from either Mark Sheldon or John Fay.

Needless to say, I am unhappy about yet another shift in Chapman’s role. This guy’s head has to be spinning quicker than the Scrambler at a carnival. If it’s control he needs to work on and you are truly wanting for him to be a starter, let him work on these in Louisville, not in the bullpen in Cincy.

Don’t most of us already have the seven arms that will comprise the ‘pen?

I believe this is the case. Ryan Madson, Sean Marshall, Nick Masset, Bill Bray, Jose Arredondo, Logan Ondrusek and Sam LeCure are that seven. If you add Chapman to this mix, one has to go in one form or another whether by trade, using an option or the DFA route. With the recent deals for Marshall, Arredondo and Masset, you have to believe they are safe. Bray has no options. That leaves Ondrusek and LeCure. LeCure can pitch more than one inning and more if needed.

Odd man out…Ondrusek…unless you’re planning on Chapman being the long guy. Throwing 20 pitches (or more) in many innings would not bode well and potentially hinder further development if that has not already been hindered.

Yes, I sigh loudly if this decision is made. You signed Chapman to be a starter, not a reliever. We’ve seen where working back-to-back games is usually not a positive.

As far as the contract for BP? Kurkjian states GM Walt Jocketty wants the deal done prior to Opening Day “one way or another”. Good news for BP and his legion of fans.

A rumor surfaced on the same day as Kurkjian’s post. The Reds and Philadelphia Philles had allegedly discussed a deal sending BP to the Phils in exchange for Cole Hamels. Matthew Osbourne, Sports Editor of The Trentonian, tweeted that he received this info from a source in Cincinnati. If you check out his timeline, you will see that the source has a track record. The source called the Masdon signing and all four of the players included in the Mat Latos deal. He also states that this is a good deal. It would be…for the Phillies. With the unknown status of Chase Utley, well, you get the picture.

This seems contradictory to Kurkjian’s “report”, right? I mean this could have been previously discussed between the two clubs, but in reading Kukrjian’s news (posted an hour later), it may be unlikely considering Timmy talked to Walt.

Or was this a “leak”? Conspiracy theories will abound. Wait. They already have.

And I honestly do not see how this deal would benefit the Reds. Sure, Hamels would help form a formidable top of the rotation along with Johnny Cueto and Mat Latos. That would come in handy once the playoffs commence, but the offense and defense would suffer. Not to mention, as I’m sure you’ve read on your #Reds Twitter timeline, a mutiny could be in the works.

And add this: Hamels is due $15 million for 2012. Phillips, about $3 million less. It doesn’t matter that both BP and Hamels could become free agents after this season either. It comes down to simple math. Well, unless another contract to moved…

One more thing. The chances of the Reds agreeing to a new deal with BP are greater than doing the same with Hamels. BP may be looking for an average salary of what Hamels currently earns. Hamels will obviously command more money and maybe even more years than Phillips. That’s a tab the Reds would likely not want on their books.

But back to reality…and spring training.

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Tags: Aroldis Chapman Baseball Brandon Phillips Cincinnati Reds MLB Reds Trade Rumors