These Reds pitchers are rumored to be off limits in trade talks

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luis Castillo (58) walks off the mound.
Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luis Castillo (58) walks off the mound. / Kareem Elgazzar via Imagn Content

We've heard several Reds rumors already this offseason, but the latest insight from ESPN's Buster Olney will likely help the Cincinnati faithful sleep more soundly tonight.

Olney is reporting that while the Cincinnati Reds are open to trading Sonny Gray, rival executives have been told that fellow starters Luis Castillo and Tyler Mahle are off limits.

Latest Reds rumors suggest Luis Castillo is off limits.

While fans would hate to see Sonny Gray pitching elsewhere in 2022, keeping Luis Castillo in Cincinnati is imperative the Reds success next season.

The Reds have already lost left-handed pitcher Wade Miley, who arguably had the best performance of any Cincinnati starter last season.

These latest Reds rumors would seem to indicate that Cincinnati will go into 2022 with Luis Castillo and Tyler Mahle atop the rotation.

Castillo struggled to begin the 2021 season, but posted an ERA of 2.73 after June 1st. Mahle had, perhaps, the best season of his career in 2021.

If Sonny Gray is still on the staff, you'd have to imagine that David Bell would slot him behind Mahle as the team's No. 3 starter.

The final two spots in the rotation will likely come down to a competition in spring training between Vladimir Gutierrez, Reiver Sanmartin, Nick Lodolo, and Hunter Greene.

Gutierrez and Sanmartin got their first taste of the big leagues last season, and Greene was just recently added to the 40-man roster.

Tyler Mahle had a fantastic 2021 season.

No pitcher in the Cincinnati Reds starting rotation had more impressive season than Tyler Mahle.

The right-hander posted the lowest FIP (3.80) of his career and was worth 3.8 fWAR.

Mahle may be in line for a long-term contract extension this offseason. The 27-year-old is under team control for the next two seasons and MLB Trade Rumors estimates his 2022 salary to be $5.6M.

Sonny Gray is owed a little less than $11M next season, and the Reds have been feverishly trying to shed payroll this offseason.

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With the market for starting pitching exploding during the early going this offseason, Cincinnati may be able to fetch a Top 100 prospect for Sonny if these latest Reds rumors are true.