As the Winter Meetings commence, we’re sure to see several Reds rumors flying out of San Diego this week. The first involves shortstop Didi Gregorius.
Jon Heyman, an insider at MLB Network, is reporting that the Cincinnati Reds and shortstop Didi Gregorius have mutual interest in a reunion. Gregorius, who’s arguably the best shortstop available on the free agent market began his professional career in Cincinnati.
As Heyman notes in his Twitter post, the Reds already have Freddy Galvis under contract for $5.5M next season. Heyman, like many Reds fans, thinks that’s a steep price for a utility infielder. I tend to agree, which is why, if the Reds do decide to reunite with Gregorius, I wouldn’t be surprised if Galvis became a key piece in a trade later this offseason.
Heyman also notes Cincinnati’s desire to add gritty, winning players to their roster. This was one of the reasons, in Heyman’s eyes, that the Reds added Mike Moustakas earlier this week. Moustakas officially agreed to a four-year/$64M deal with Cincinnati on Thursday.
It was reported earlier this offseason that Cincinnati was interested in adding Gregorius this offseason. The fact that the New York Yankees passed on the opportunity to extend a qualifying offer only makes adding the former Reds farmhand even more attractive. Unlike adding Marcell Ozuna, who received a qualifying offer from St. Louis, signing Didi wouldn’t cost the team a draft pick.
Last season, Didi Gregorius only played in 82 games due to recovery from Tommy John surgery. Gregorius slashed .238/.276/.441 with 16 home runs and 61 RBIs in 324 at-bats. Those numbers all represent the lowest statistics since 2015.
Gregorius represents a potential high-risk/ high-reward candidate. While another top-notch season would’ve secured him a lucrative contract, his absence for half the season and subpar performance upon his return likely hurt his stock on the open market. Still, Gregorius is rumored to be pursued by the Philadelphia Phillies, who now employ his former manager Joe Girardi.
With the Winter Meetings underway, expect the unexpected. Cincinnati has money to spend and is looking to upgrade the roster; this is especially true in terms of adding players who can improve the team’s offense. The latest Reds rumors would certainly solve that issue, provided Gregorius returned to form next season.