MLB Trade Rumors: 5 Trades and Rumors the Cincinnati Reds Should Pursue

Joshua Ramsey@jramcincyAnalyst IJune 18, 2012

MLB Trade Rumors: 5 Trades and Rumors the Cincinnati Reds Should Pursue

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    With a flock of trade rumors already making their way around the mill, it's time for the Cincinnati Reds to start making some noise within them.  The Reds find themselves atop the N.L. Central and proving to be the team everyone knew they could be—but is that team, alone, enough to get Castillini's boys through October?

    Cincinnati has begun coming around offensively, but the offensive lineup could still use some tuning.  The addition of a legit right-handed power bat who can play left field should be No. 1 on the list in terms of needs and wants for the club.

    Even though Cincy boasts one of (if not) the best bullpen(s) in baseball, relief pitching is always near the top of any baseball club's list in terms of additional help needed to push their team into October.

    The Reds have been lucky at this point in the season to have only used five starters.  They are, however, treading a thin line between a very steady starting five and a possible disaster.  The team has no immediate backup ready to step in and start other than Brett Tomko at Triple-A—not necessarily the option a team wants when heading towards an October run.

    But relief help would open up Aroldis Chapman—now that is an option to be reckoned with.  

    It is because of this that the Reds should stay away from rumors involving starting pitchers such as Ryan Dempster, who is pictured above.  Why spend more for a starter when you can spend less on a relief pitcher that can free up Chapman?

    Let's check out five players the Reds could target at the deadline.

LF Josh Willingham

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    Josh Willingham is currently on pace for 32 home runs and 112 RBI this season.  He yields a current slash line of .276/.387/.538; that equates to a .925 OPS—not too shabby and a great option to protect Joey Votto from the four-hole.

    Josh hit 29 homers and produced 98 RBI in less than 500 at-bats last season with Oakland.  He has continued throughout his career to produce good power numbers in pitchers parks.

    Willingham shouldn't be too expensive for the team that acquires him.  When it comes to bang for your buck, there is no better option.  Just imagine what he could do at GABP! 

    Check out this MLB Rumor update by ESPN's Buster Olney about the Twins willingness to unload Willingham.

RP Brett Myers

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    Jason A. Churchill reports here that Myers could become available for a deadline trade.

    Brett Myers could step in and fill the closer's role.  In doing so he would open Aroldis Chapman up for a chance to begin starting later in the season.

    I am still a believer that the Cuban Missile needs to start.  If he isn't starting, he needs to simply be available to pitch two to three innings in relief during the most crucial situations.  Limiting him to closing is not a good choice.

    Myers currently holds a 1.99 ERA and is 16-of-17 in save opportunities.  He gets the job done and would be an excellent pick-up.  Cincinnati may even be able to get him at a decent price.

    Jason A. Churchill reports here that Myers could become available for a deadline trade.

RF Hunter Pence

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    The Phillies acquired Hunter Pence last season from Houston, but they have had a disappointing season that has been ravaged by injuries.  To no fault of management, the window seems to be closing fast for Philly to continue its winning ways.

    Could Pence find himself on the market for the second straight year? Hunter Pence is a golden nugget that they could trade in for some nice prospects to reopen their "winning window."

    Pence plays with a fire and intensity that would fit in very well with Cincinnati.  He has been hitting third for the Phillies, but would probably find himself slotted at No. 2 in Cincinnati's lineup. 

    He may not cure the cleanup hitter issue, but he does get on base—doing that in front of Joey Votto is always a major positive.  Did I mention that he is also on pace to hit 31 homers and score 110 runs?  

    Not too bad.

RP Huston Street

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    The Padres signed Huston Street this past offseason, but San Diego currently finds themselves out of contention once again and have multiple chips to float around during the trade deadline.  ESPN's MLB Trade Rumors reports that Street could be available.

    Huston's main problem throughout his entire career has been health issues—he has consistently had problems staying on the field for a full season. Regardless, Street is another person who could step in and free up Aroldis Chapman from the closer's role.

    Street has a reasonable contract and still has potential to continue getting better and better.  He has pitched well in limited time this season and maintains a 1.35 ERA through 14 games with seven saves in seven opportunities.

LF Carlos Quentin

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    Carlos Quentin is the prize.  Cincinnati should do everything possible to put Quentin in a Reds uniform.

    I said it numerous times in an earlier article about the possibility of a San Diego/Cincinnati trade involving Quentin, as the outfielder solves a multitude of problems for the Reds in one swoop. 

    He would become that true power bat in the cleanup spot, allowing Phillips to move back to leadoff and Cozart to hit second in the batting order.

    The price for Quentin will not be cheap, but he is the one player that makes Cincinnati the immediate N.L. Pennant favorites.  Yes, you heard that right.

    Carlos currently has a slash line of .404/.523/.865 through 52 at-bats.  A little known fact about Quentin is that he does not strike out much for a power hitter and has never struck out more than 84 times in a season—that's 45 less K's that Joey Votto had last year!

    ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney continues to name the Reds as one of the top possible landing spots for Quentin.