NL Central rival rumored to be finalizing deal with former Reds pitcher Sonny Gray

It sounds like Sonny Gray is heading back to the NL Central, but he won't be joining the Cincinnati Reds.
Minnesota Twins pitcher Sonny Gray
Minnesota Twins pitcher Sonny Gray / Adam Bettcher/GettyImages

According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the St. Louis Cardinals are expected to finalize a deal on Monday with former Cincinnati Reds pitcher Sonny Gray.

Gray has been a dream free agent signing for many Reds fans, but instead, the right-hander appears to be signing with Cincinnati's biggest rival.

Gray was traded to the Minnesota Twins prior to the 2022 season and finished second in the AL Cy Young Award voting in 2023. Gray was 8-8 with a 2.79 ERA with the Twins this past season.

NL Central rival rumored to be finalizing deal with former Reds pitcher Sonny Gray

Sonny Gray spent three seasons in Cincinnati after a disasterous two-year run with the New York Yankees. During his two years in the Bronx, Gray went 15-16 with a 4.61 ERA.

Gray, along with left-hander Reiver Sanmartin, was traded to the Cincinnati Reds prior to the 2019 season. Gray went to the All-Star Game for the second time in his career that year and formed a terrififc 1-2 punch alongside Luis Castillo at the top of the Reds rotation.

Gray was traded to the Twins in exchange for former first-round pick Chase Petty in 2022. The Reds teardown began with Gray and also saw the club part ways with former All-Stars Jesse Winker and Eugenio Suarez that spring.

Sonny Gray will become the third free agent starter St. Louis has signed this offseason. The Cardinals have already inked Lance Lynn and Kyle Gibson to one-year contracts, but Gray is the big fish that St. Louis fans have been dying to see John Mozeliak sign this offseason.

The Cardinals finished last in the NL Central last season, and that's not a place that St. Louis is used to. This expected deal with Gray will put pressure on Reds President of Baseball Operations Nick Krall to get some reinforcements for Cincinnati's rotation.