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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Daniel Norris #44 of the Detroit Tigers pitches during a game. Could the Reds trade for Norris>
BOSTON, MA – MAY 4: Daniel Norris #44 of the Detroit Tigers pitches during a game. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

2. The Reds could land Tigers’ lefty Daniel Norris in a trade.

The left-handers in the Cincinnati Reds bullpen have been anything but reliable this season. The self-proclaimed closer, Amir Garrett, has the worst ERA among active reliever on the Reds at this moment, and Sean Doolittle hasn’t faired much better. While Daniel Norris might not be a reliable arm either, it would David Bell another option.

Norris is one year removed from putting up solid numbers in relief. After starting 29 games in 2019, the southpaw came out of the Tigers’ bullpen last season and posted a 3.25 ERA over 27.2 innings of work. Norris held left-handers to a .154 batting average last season and only two of the 26 left-handed batters he faced recorded an extra base hit.

This season hasn’t been as kind to Daniel Norris, as he’s allowed a .766 OPS-against when facing left-handed batters. Norris has, however, matched his career-best in terms of strikeout-rate (25.5%) according to FanGraphs.

Norris would be a one-year rental. The southpaw is in the final year of arbitration eligibility and signed a one-year/ $3.48M contract this past offseason. That would allow the Reds to acquire Norris for basically peanuts. Like the aforementioned Joe Jimenez, a minor league prospect or even a player to be named later may be enough to secure Norris’ services.

Instead of a straight player-for-player swap, perhaps the Reds and Tigers could do something similar to what we saw Cincinnati do this past season with the Colorado Rockies. The Reds sent Robert Stephenson and minor league prospect Jameson Hannah to the Rockies in exchange for Jeff Hoffman and pitching prospect Case Williams.

Might the Tigers be willing to take flyer on center field prospect Mariel Bautista? Bautista recently got promoted to Double-A Chattanooga after posting a 123 wRC+ and .813 OPS at Advanced-A Dayton. In addition, the Reds could send Cionel Perez to Detroit as well.

In exchange, maybe the Tigers brass could be swayed into including pitching prospect Zack Hess in the deal. Hess is former seventh-round pick currently working at Advanced-A West Michigan. The towering (6-foot-6, 220-pound) right-hander is working on increasing his velocity and could serve as middle reliever in the big leagues if he irons some things out in the minors.