The Cincinnati Reds reached an agreement with almost every single one of their arbitration-eligible players. But Jonathan India and the Reds were unable to come to terms before Thursday's deadline.
This means that the two sides, whose relationship has already been in question because of trade rumors this offseason, will likely head to an arbitration hearing later this month or in early-February.
It also appears as though former Reds great Joey Votto may be drawing some interest in free agency. Where might the six-time All-Star be playing in 2024?
Jonathan India were not close during arbitration negotiations
Sources told Gordon Wittenmyer of the Cincinnati Enquirer that India requested $4 million, but the Reds were set on $3.2 million. This is a pretty big gap. That $800,000 is more than India made during his first season in the league.
The Reds haven't exactly "shopped" India this offseason, but several teams have inquired as to his availability. This $800,000-chasm will likely result in more strife, and it further underscores the tension between the former NL Rookie of the Year and the organization that drafted him.
MLB Trade Rumors predicted earlier this offseason that India would earn $3.7 million in 2024. If their calculations are correct, and oftentimes they are, perhaps India will win his arbitration hearing.
Former Reds 1B Joey Votto drawing interest in free agency
Leave it to Joey Votto to use a Care Bears GIF on social media in order to bring light to his search for a new team. USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported earlier this week that three teams had shown interest in the former NL MVP. Votto corrected Nightengale's report and confirmed that four teams were actively involved.
No one knows who those four teams, but speculation is centered around the Toronto Blue Jays. If Votto did sign a free agent deal with the Jays it would give the longtime Reds first baseman the opportunity to play in front of his hometown fans. Toronto lost Brandon Belt this offseason, and it would seem as though Votto and Blue Jays are a good fit.
The San Diego Padres are also in the market for a left-handed hitter. Would Votto head out to southern California and join forces with Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr.?
One destination that seems unlikely, however, is back in Cincinnati. The Reds declined Votto's $20-million team-option earlier this offseason, and with so much young talent across the infield, a reunion with Votto would appear to be a pipe dream.