Reds dodged a massive bullet by not trading for Trevor Story

May 16, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story (27) fields the ball in the fifth inning against the Cincinnati Reds. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
May 16, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Rockies shortstop Trevor Story (27) fields the ball in the fifth inning against the Cincinnati Reds. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Reds Country may not know it now, but the Cincinnati Reds dodged a huge bullet by not pulling the trigger on a blockbuster deal that would’ve brought Rockies’ All-Star shortstop Trevor Story to the Queen City.

Story was one of the hottest names on the trade block, but the deadline came and went without Colorado making any deal at all involving the two-time Silver Slugger. Even Story himself was dumbfounded that he finished the day still calling Denver home.

It comes as a surprising move to most in the baseball world. A team in Colorado’s position, who is living in the basement just trying to find some pieces to rebuild a set of stairs back to the first floor, could theoretically end up with nothing but a compensatory draft pick in return this winter when Story becomes a free agent.

The Reds dodged a bullet by not trading for Trevor Story.

Now you’re probably asking yourself why is it that Cincinnati would be lucky to not land a player like Trevor Story. Honestly, I would not have been upset if the Reds had ended up trading for Story. But it was just too risky of a deal, especially if Cincinnati misses the playoffs this season.

Instead of going all in on Story, the Reds front office went in a different direction at the deadline by trying to iron out what has been the Cincinnati’s Achilles’ heel all season; the bullpen. The Reds made two separate deals to bring in three much needed bullpen arms, all the while not having to give up any high-level prospects.

The shortstop position has been the other position of need that has had the Reds’ front office scrambling all season long to find an answer. Many thought Story could be that answer, but that was before Kyle Farmer decided to set the world on fire.

It’s never been about Farmer’s glove; he’s world class at the shortstop position defensively. It’s been Farmer’s bat that has slowed him down. Pedro Cerrano must’ve had Jobu wake up his bats because the 30-year-old Farmer has been hitting .394 in July and went 10-for-16 in the four-game series in Chicago.

Trevor Story is also in the midst of having one of his worst seasons at the plate. The two-time All-Star is hitting only .240 with a measly 13 homers in 89 games. Besides the COVID-19 shortened season, Story has never hit less than 24 homers in a full season. Unless something drastic changes, Story won’t reach that mark in 2021.

The Reds were among a handful of teams not willing to pay a hefty price.

Colorado on the verge of a massive rebuild, and  likely would’ve wanted a nice haul of prospects for Story’s services. That was likely never going to work for Cincinnati. Trading multiple years of service time of some of their top prospects for possibly two months of Story wasn’t likely a fairy tale the Reds wanted to entertain.

It’s also worth mentioning that Story has been a huge benefactor of the Coors Field affect. Check out his home/road splits via FanGraphs. It’s evident that Story isn’t even close to being the same caliber hitter when he’s not enjoying the thin air at Coors Field. Story is batting 80 points lower on the road, and has almost half as many homers outside of Denver for his career.

I think for the most part the Reds believe they were just a few pieces away from being a very dangerous team, and I don’t think they’re wrong. Fans have seen this team slug the ball with almost anybody. It’s been the bullpen that’s been the biggest cause for concern. I think this was a statement of confidence from the Reds front office saying they’re backing these guys, we don’t need a fancy Story.

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While having Trevor Story in Cincinnati could’ve been exciting and been the change he needed to get back on track, the risk outweighed the reward. At some point this winter some team is likely to pay serious money for a player who’s been only average outside the thin air of Colorado. Reds fans should be glad Cincinnati didn’t sell the farm for a sad “Story.”