In terms of starting pitchers, there are some big names available on the free agent market. Aaron Nola, Eduardo Rodriguez, and Sonny Gray are just a few of the top hurlers available this winter.
But the trade market is also likely to get some play this offseason as well. Logan Gilbert will be a popular name among GMs as the Hot Stove heats up, and Tyler Glasnow could find a new address heading into 2024 as well.
But one name that doesn't get mentioned enough is Chicago White Sox pitcher Dylan Cease. After a down-year in 2023 and the South Siders looking to rebuild, Cease could be the perfect addition for the Cincinnati Reds this offseason.
Reds are perfect trade partner for White Sox pitcher Dylan Cease
The Cincinanti Reds are well-positioned to make a splash this offseason. Whether it's in free agency or through a trade, Cincinnati has the payroll flexibility and a Top 5-rated farm system. So why not go big?
For all intents and purposes, the Reds starting lineup is set. But the starting rotation and bullpen need some work. Adding a pitcher like Dylan Cease could bolster both.
The bullpen was overworked last season, due mainly to quick exits on the part of the team's starters. Cease his track record of three consecutive seasons of 32-plus starts and threw six or more innings 14 times in 2023. Only four times did Cease fail to make it at least into the fifth inning.
After posting a 2.20 ERA and 1.11 WHIP in 2022, Cease came back to earth a little bit this past season. The right-hander saw his ERA jump to 4.58 and his WHIP to 1.42. However, Cease still punched out 214 batters, making it his third straight season with 200 or more strikeouts.
Dylan Cease fits the Reds timeline to contend for the NL Central
Dylan Cease is under team control for the next two seasons. The 27-year-old made $5.7-million last season, and MLB Trade Rumors estimates he'll take home $8.8-million in 2024.
While pitchers like Tyler Glasnow and Logan Gilbert would certainly be welcome in Cincinnati, both the Seattle Mariners and Tampa Bay Rays are looking to contend in 2024. That means they'll be looking for major league-ready talent in return.
The Chicago White Sox, however, are squarely in the midst of a rebuild. Rather than potentially sacrifice players like Jonathan India, Spencer Steer, or Christian Encarnacion-Strand to meet the high demands of a team like the Mariners or Rays, the Reds could offer up some of their young prospects.
Players like Cam Collier, Edwin Arroyo, Carlos Jorge, and Chase Petty would be very appealing to a club like the Chicago White Sox who aren't looking to contend for the postseason until closer to 2025 or even 2026.
If there's one pitcher available on the trade market this winter who fits the Cincinnati Reds' timeline best, it's Dylan Cease. Don't be shocked if Nick Krall gives White Sox GM Chris Getz a call this offseason.