Reds: 4 trade proposals with the Tigers to improve the bullpen

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - AUGUST 19: Jose Cisnero #67 of the Detroit Tigers . (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - AUGUST 19: Jose Cisnero #67 of the Detroit Tigers . (Photo by Quinn Harris/Getty Images) /
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Joe Jimenez #77 of the Detroit Tigers comes off the field. Could the Reds trade for Jimenez?
KANSAS CITY, MO – MAY 22: Joe Jimenez #77 of the Detroit Tigers comes off the field. Could the Reds swing a trade for Jimenez or another Tigers’ reliever? (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images) /

The Cincinnati Reds got some bad news on Friday when they learned Tejay Antone would be sidelined for at least the 10-day minimum with inflammation in his right forearm. Even before the injury to their bullpen ace, it’s become apparent that if the Reds hope to contend in the NL Central, they need to shore up their relief corps. The Detroit Tigers may be able to help.

Tigers GM Al Avila, via The Athletics’ Cody Stavenhagen said, “we (Tigers) can’t ignore if we have a trade that can make us better for next year and maybe even for the rest of this year, we’ve got to consider that.” It’s no surprise that Detroit will be looking more towards the future than the present, and our friends over at Motor City Bengals have taken a look at some of their top trade candidates.

While some fans would argue that the Reds should employ a similar strategy, the truth is that Cincinnati is just a game below .500 and five games back of the Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs who are tied atop the division. So, with an eye toward improving the bullpen, who could be a target for the Reds and what might they have to give up?

1. The Reds could trade for former Tigers’ All-Star Joe Jimenez.

Now, one look at Joe Jimenez’s stat line, and an overwhelming majority of Reds Country will immediately roll their eyes at the idea of making a deal for the former All-Star. Yes, Jimenez’s 9.28 ERA is not pretty, nor are the 15 walks the right-hander has allowed this season.

But, in 10.2 innings of work, Jimenez has also struck out 14 batters and the native of Puerto Rico has only allowed one home run all season. His 0.84 HR/9 is a drastic improvement from what we’ve seen the past two seasons and looks very similar to the numbers we saw when Jimenez went to the All-Star Game in 2018.

Landing Jimenez may not take much. In fact, a controllable corner outfielder like Mark Payton may be enough to sway Detroit into a deal. However, since the Reds are desperate for anything that may help their beleaguered bullpen, perhaps an additional low-level minor league prospect would allow Tigers’ GM Al Avila to pull the trigger.

Joe Jimenez is controllable through the 2023 season and is currently on a one-year deal that’s paying him $1.5M. Jimenez has two minor-league options remaining, so if he struggles mightily, the Reds could send him to Triple-A Louisville. The absolute worst-case scenario would be that it just doesn’t work out and Cincinnati non-tenders Jimenez this winter.