Cincinnati Reds plan for the winter meetings in hopes of a good holiday season

Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cincinnati Reds are getting ready for the winter meetings and the potential upgrades to follow.

The Cincinnati Reds are getting ready for the winter meetings where the Rule 5 Draft will take place.  They also will meet with free agents and other teams.  It is the best time to make deals and to start talking about them, as well.

The top priority of every step of the off-season is moving Brandon Phillips.  He has expressed interest in going to SoCal, but he likely isn’t the Dodgers top selection.  The Reds may need to wait for other moves to be completed before moving Phillips.

The Reds also are looking for a veteran backstop.  They feel they upgraded in claiming Juan Graterol from the Los Angeles Angels, but he may not be a full-time solution.  Right now Tucker Barnhart is the only healthy big league catcher on their roster.

The bullpen was going to be a focus for the Reds this off-season, but the pricing structure has changed all of that.  With the way that relief pitchers are asking for so much the Reds went from being buyers to sellers.  Raisel Iglesias and Blake Wood will be discussed with many teams at the meetings.

This year the meetings are being held in Washington, but unlike last year the Nationals aren’t a likely trading partner.  Phillips was supposedly on his way, but he blocked that deal.  Now the Reds are headed to Washington to send Phillips on his way.

The Reds have to make things happen in Washington and free agency is one of those areas.

The Reds need to make it a priority to close the Kurt Suzuki deal after the Rule 5 Draft,  He is the top back-up veteran catcher on the market.  Signing him or the next best option before the front office returns to Cincinnati is a necessity for a successful rest of the off-season.

The Reds also need to work on a minor league deal for the best relief pitcher that Reds’ fans can’t stand, Ross Ohlendorf.  He was the only competent member of the bullpen in the first half of 2016.  He should be given an incentive laden deal and given every opportunity to earn those incentives.

The Reds also have the unique ability to see if any big name free agents catch their eyes.  They have about $13-million that they can afford to spend in 2017.  They could sign a free agent or two to try to flip later in the year for more prospects.

Next: Reds' Winter Meetings Rumors

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The real thing that the Reds need to do is work hard.  Hopefully, Phillips is not a Red when the meetings end and Suzuki is.  In any case, the Reds need to continue to get more talented while focusing on youth.