Reds rumors: James Paxton and Sonny Gray are possible trade targets

SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 15: James Paxton #65 of the Seattle Mariners delivers against the Boston Red Sox in the second inning the game at Safeco Field on June 15, 2018 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 15: James Paxton #65 of the Seattle Mariners delivers against the Boston Red Sox in the second inning the game at Safeco Field on June 15, 2018 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images) /
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We’re back with another edition of Reds rumors, as the Cincinnati Reds are said to be in conversations about acquiring starting pitching via trade.

The Hot Stove league is staying warm as Major League clubs continue to stoke the fires. The latest Reds rumors have Cincinnati in pursuit of a pair of established starters from the American League. James Paxton of the Seattle Mariners and Sonny Gray of the New York Yankees are said to be high on the Cincinnati Reds list as possible trade options for the ballclub.

Jon Heyman of Fancred Sports is reporting that Cincinnati has been in conversations with several American League clubs. Foremost among them are the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees, but according to Heyman, the Reds are talking with their cross-state rival, the Cleveland Indians, as well.

It’s no secret that the Cincinnati Reds are in search of pitching help this season. The Reds were second-to-last in the National League last season in team ERA and bolstering their starting rotation is the priority this offseason. The addition of a player like Paxton or Gray would certainly do just that.

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  • So, what would the Reds have to give up in order to gain the services of Paxton or Gray? According to Heyman, Nick Senzel, Taylor Trammell, and Hunter Greene are hot names being tossed around by other clubs as compensation for one of their start pitchers.

    It’s hard to see the Cincinnati Reds packaging any of those top prospects for Sonny Gray. Gray has only one year of team control remaining and had a far less productive season in 2018 than Paxton. Gray went 11-9 with a 4.90 ERA in 22 starts, while Paxton went 11-6 with a 3.76 ERA and tossed a no-hitter.

    So, would Cincinnati package a player like Senzel and other prospects to Seattle in exchange for Paxton? It’s hard to say. The Reds have a very deep farm system, ranked No. 7 among all Major League teams, so they no doubt have the assets to make a deal for a player like Paxton.

    Paxton is a lefty, which, as I’ve said before, is a major plus for a team like the Reds that face off consistently against power-hitting lefties in the NL Central. The Reds do not have a quality left-handed starter in their rotation, so it sure would be nice to acquire a player like Paxton to go up against the likes of Anthony Rizzo, Matt Carpenter, and recently named NL MVP Christian Yelich.

    The Cleveland Indians are also shopping starters Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco. Kluber notched 20 wins last season with an ERA of 2.89, while Carrasco went 17-10 with a 3.38 ERA. Both players are under contract through next season with team-options for the 2020 season. Kluber also has an option for the 2021 season as well.

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    These types of Reds rumors will continue to get louder and louder until we see the Cincinnati Reds land some pitching help through either free agency or a trade. The Reds keep saying they’re going to get the pitching, here’s a chance to do just that.