Reds should follow the Cubs example and execute this costly move during the offseason

Cincinnati Reds vs. Chicago Cubs Mike Moustakas, Jason Heyward
Cincinnati Reds vs. Chicago Cubs Mike Moustakas, Jason Heyward / Quinn Harris/GettyImages

Chicago Cubs President of Baseball Operations Jed Hoyer said on Monday that outfielder Jason Heyward is unlikely to return from the IL this season. The club also plans to release Heyward shortly after the season ends.

The Cincinnati Reds need to follow suit and do the same thing with infielder Mike Moustakas who has one year remaining on his four-year contract. Moustakas has been nothing short of a disappointment since joining the club in 2019 and it would be in everyone's best interest if the two sides parted ways.

Much like the Cubs, the Reds are rebuilding. By moving on from Heyward, the Cubbies will be able to give opportunities to young prospects like Brennan Davis and Alexander Canario. The Reds have plenty of young infielders who could benefit by the team cutting ties with Moustakas.

Mike Moustakas was supposed to be part of a contending Reds team in 2020.

At the end of the day baseball is a business. The Cincinnati Reds front office went all-in during the 2019-20 offseason. Before the offseason even got underway, the team traded for starter Trevor Bauer. Cincinnati inked Shogo Akiyama, Nick Castellanos, and Mike Moustakas to lucrative, long-term deals and also came to terms with left-hander Wade Miley.

Unfortunately, the gamble didn't pay off. The coronavirus pandemic shrunk the regular season from 162 to 60 games and the Reds bowed out in the first-round of the playoffs without even scoring a single run.

This offseason, the Reds underwent a mini-fire sale by trading Amir Garrett, Eugenio Suarez, Jesse Winker, Tucker Barnhart, and Sonny Gray. The Reds also waived Wade Miley and failed to retain Nick Castellanos in free agency.

At this year's trade deadline, the Reds doubled down on their efforts to reboot the roster by trading Luis Castillo, Tyler Mahle, Brandon Drury, and Tyler Naquin. Cincinnati has also recalled Jose Barrero who's now starting at shortstop over veteran Kyle Farmer.

The Reds should follow the Cubs' example and release Mike Moustakas.

It's now time, as the Cincinnati Reds prepare for the offseason, for the club to go all-in on the rebuild. Aside from Joey Votto, who'll be entering the last year of his deal, and Kyle Farmer, the Reds should purge the roster of almost every veteran player. This includes Mike Moustakas.

It won't be cheap. Moose is owed $18M in 2023 and the team holds an option for the 2024 season with a $4M buyout. Essentially, Moustakas could collect a check for $22M just to go away. Ironically, that $22M figure is the same amount it's going to cost the Chicago Cubs to part ways with Jason Heyward.

With prospects like Spencer Steer, Christian Encarnacion-Strand, Matt McLain, and others seemingly ready to burst onto the scene, the Cincinnati Reds cannot afford to hamper the development of their up-and-coming young players just to keep Moustakas on the roster.

The Cincinnati Reds should give Moose the courtesy to use the entire offseason in order to find a new team while at the same time doing right by their prospects by giving them an increased role on next year's squad. It's going to be pricey, but that's the cost of doing business in Major League Baseball.

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