Cincinnati Reds fall behind Milwaukee Brewers in the off-season

(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Reds have been quiet this off-season, while the Milwaukee Brewers have made moves.

The Cincinnati Reds haven’t done much this off-season.  They have signed a pair of set-up men for the bullpen in David Hernandez and Jared Hughes.  Other than that, the highlight of the off-season was the Los Angeles Angels signing away Zack Cozart.

Meanwhile, the Milwaukee Brewers have made a series of moves to get better this off-season.  They took advantage of the Miami Marlins’ fire sale and picked up left fielder Christian Yelich.  Then they signed Lorenzo Cain to a free agent contract.

Yelich has been a starter for the past four season for the Marlins.  It wasn’t until the Marlins moved into their new stadium that his power took off.  His defense has been at the elite level his entire career, however.

Cain was considered the top outfield free agent this off-season.  He made his MLB debut with the Brewers in 2010.  The following off-season Cain was sent to the Kansas City Royals in the Zack Greinke deal.

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Cain never developed elite power, but he is a top of the line-up batter.  He is also plus defender in center field.  For the Brewers his ability to produce anywhere in the top five spots in the batting order may be his most valuable asset.

The Cincinnati Reds have countered by loading up in bullpen talent.

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The signing of Hernandez was solid.  Hernandez has 22 career saves and 105 holds.  He can step-in day one as the primary set-up man for Raisel Iglesias or take over the seventh inning role.

The signing of Hughes appeared very similar to the signing of Hernandez.  Hughes has 4 career saves and 66 holds. Hughes is likely going to be a the low leverage option in the bullpen, but has the upside holding leads late in games.

The Reds have also made some minor league free agents signings.  

They signed Vance Worley to start, if the young pitchers can’t fill out the starting rotation this year.  They also signed Phill Gooselin as an insurance policy for the back-up infielder role.

The Reds still have unfinished business this off-season.  They wanted to move center fielder Billy Hamilton.  They also hoped to add a veteran starting pitcher.

Next: When will reinforcements arrive?

The Reds and Brewers just approach rebuilding in different ways.  The Brewers look to make an occasional splash in free agency.  The Reds want to have all of their elite players come up through their system.