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Reds haven’t talked to Shin-Soo Choo in weeks

Dec 4, 2013, 10:15 AM EDT

Shin-Soo Choo Getty Getty Images

For any Reds fans holding out hope that Shin-Soo Choo will wind up back in Cincinnati, general manager Walt Jocketty has some discouraging news:

We have not had any discussions in a couple of weeks. I had one conversation with [agent Scott] Boras a couple of weeks ago. We haven’t done anything since then because of holidays and things going on.

Jocketty also told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com that the Reds are searching for offensive help, likely in the form of a leadoff man, which adds to the unlikelihood of Choo returning.

  1. phillysports1 - Dec 4, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    Choo is a leadoff man that can produce . Just bring him back .

    • stoutfiles - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:15 AM

      The Reds don’t have 100 mil+ to spend on Choo. As it stands they will have to break the bank just to keep Bruce in 2015.

      In a perfect world, yes, the Reds would keep all their good players, but they are a small market team and can’t pay everyone.

      • thomas844 - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:25 AM

        They are already paying their injury-prone set-up man absurd amounts of money.

    • metalhead65 - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:31 AM

      he is great leadoff man who can produce as long as he is facing right handed pitching. against lefty’s? not so much and not worth the 100 mil. borass wants for him. let’s just hope jocketty can find a talent with the draft pick the reds get for him. as for a leadoff hitter and centerfielder why are they so against giving hamilto a chance to win the job? I don’t care about his lack of minor league experience. am I the only one who saw his electric performance in Sept.? any coincidence the reds did not win another game when he did not play the last week of the season? but we don’t want to rush him so let’s keep him in the minors for another 5,000 at bats while walt searches for another ex-cardinal to over pay.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:50 AM

        Unfortunately for Hamilton you still cannot steal first.

      • junglerat524 - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:19 PM

        He didn’t have much of a problem finding 1st in his limited time up here, but when he did……..BEEP BEEP!!!

      • jm91rs - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:27 PM

        Why do we assume that Hamilton cannot get on base after one poor year at AAA? He didn’t have a lot of trouble in his few opportunities at the big league level. He’s 23 years old, I’m pretty sure no one is ready to declare that he can’t do it. I don’t think for a minute that he’ll get on base at the rate of Choo, but in my opinion a small market team will take Billy Hamilton +$100 million in the bank over Choo just about every time. This is not a team that can afford to give long contracts to win now and suffer later, they’ll figure that out on Votto if they can’t at least win one WS in these next couple of years.

        Another thought, the Reds won the Central with Drew Stubbs, surely Hamilton can get on base more than he did.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:18 PM

        I am here to tell you that Hamilton will be an OBP nightmare, and he is no Stubbs with the glove. His lifetime OBP in 4 seasons in the minors is .350. Very mediocre, and last year in over 500 plate appearances in AAA, he registered a pathetic .308. Couple this with a microscopic .375 slugging percentage, and a very raw CF play, he is a significant downgrade from Choo, and not really major league material.

      • metalhead65 - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:38 PM

        and I am here to tell you if the reds could live with stubbs .220 average and 200 strikeouts for 2 years then they can live with hamilton learning on the job. not major league material? sure glad you don’t run the reds. he would have no problem landing a job if the reds released him tom. stubbs is so great the indians moved him to right field when he played. the guy is fast and that is all he is or will be.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:43 PM

        You are absolutely correct, in your final sentence. I suppose you were referring to Stubbs, but just insert Hamilton and you have an apt description.

      • stoutfiles - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:43 PM

        I am here to tell you that Hamilton will be an OBP nightmare, and he is no Stubbs with the glove. His lifetime OBP in 4 seasons in the minors is .350.

        Have you met the Reds SS, Zack Cozart? He can’t get a OBP above .300, let alone .350. And he got to bat second almost the entire year. If Hamilton can hang around .350 he’ll be fine. He’s not going to be as productive as Choo, but he’s not going to cost 100+ mil, either.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 2:11 PM

        I just think it is wishful thinking that Hamilton will approach .350 OBP. His decline last year at AAA, has to be worrisome. And Big League clubs don’t allow for increases in OBP. More than likely Hamilton will be much closer to .300 OBP, than .350.

  2. stoutfiles - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    “Jocketty also told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com that the Reds are searching for offensive help, likely in the form of a leadoff man”

    Oh, if only we had a player we could call up that can play CF and is really fast. Someone that’s really, really good at stealing bases. Even if he didn’t normally play CF, we could force him to play CF in the minors for a year so he could take over for Choo.

    If only the Reds had a player like this.

  3. Old Gator - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:14 AM

    Gezundtheit!

    • junglerat524 - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:51 AM

      Still an idiot I see

    • stex52 - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:11 PM

      Good to see you covered that, OG. I was afraid I was going to have to.

      • Old Gator - Dec 4, 2013 at 7:54 PM

        Yeah, well, when you’re as well brought up as I was, you always try to observe proper etiquette. Oh, and jongleur or whatever your name is, thanks for looking!

  4. proudlycanadian - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    If they want a very fast lead off hitter, Rajai Davis might be a cheap alternative.

    • paperlions - Dec 4, 2013 at 2:43 PM

      Will you stop saying that? Davis isn’t actually good at baseball. He’s 33 with a career .316 OBP and a wRC+ of 87. He’s a decent enough bench player and can play average defense, but he is bad at hitting a baseball. He has always been bad at hitting a baseball.

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 4, 2013 at 4:02 PM

        He is fast and can steal bases and make plays in the outfield. He is the only person to catch a fly ball that was about to go over the fence at the Rodgers Center.

      • paperlions - Dec 4, 2013 at 4:41 PM

        But he would be a horrible lead off hitter because he can’t, you know…hit.

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 4, 2013 at 6:47 PM

        He hit .260 last season and had a .312 OBP. In 331 plate appearances, he stole 45 bases. That is a much better rate than Ellsbury who had 577 plate appearances and stole 52 bases. Once on base, he put a lot of pressure on pitchers.

  5. spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    Hard to figure out the Reds. Sure sounds as if Choo is going elsewhere. Votto unhappy. Dusty gone. Phillips unhappy and rumored to be gone. Rumors swirl around a Homer Bailey trade. Frazer OK, but not great numbers in home friendly, GAB. Mesoraco, improving but still prone to young errors. Cozart decent, but uninspiring. Hamilton intriguing but his OBP questionable. Latos solid if his late-season arm troubles are behind him. Satisfied with the oft injured Ludwick? Arroyo seeking employment elsewhere. Cueto most likely a return to form. Cingrani promising but at times has trouble finding the strike zone. Leake good most of the year, but doesn’t have the stuff to make mistakes in GAB, and struggled in key spots.

    A lot more questions than answers at this point, but still a talented bunch, but to date not much accomplishment.

    • stoutfiles - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:37 AM

      “Cueto most likely a return to form”

      Boy I hope so. It’s more likely he doesn’t though, considering he keeps injuring himself just rotating in his windup.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:43 AM

        Well I was being generous, and he did alter his delivery after his return. And while Price may help with the team chemistry, it is hard to see how retaining Phillips is going to help there.

    • junglerat524 - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:08 PM

      Seriously? Sounds as if Choo is going elsewhere? We knew that the day they signed him to a 1 YEAR DEAL. They knew & hoped that going into last season he was the magic potion & he delivered. They knew it was a rental. How this is news to you is beyond me unless you have no idea, which by reading the rest of your post, you don’t. Where have you read that Votto is unhappy? Dusty gone? That’s a bad thing? A change was needed. It was time for Dusty to go. Homer Bailey rumors? Welcome to The Hot Stove League. Happens every year. He always seems to be headed somewhere in Texas, that crazy Cowboy. Yes, Fraz(i)er, is OK but not great but I’m willing to allow him to have the starting job his junior season. The kid brings the noise in the clubhouse & comes up with some big hits. Mez is the future at catcher & has been for years now. Of course you’d know that had you actually followed them. I loved Hanny but he deserves better than being a backup. The Reds did him a favor. Cozart has a lot to prove this year I will give you that. Best thing for him is to just plant his name in a spot in the lineup order & keep him there the entire year. 7-8 sounds about right.

      Latos will be fine. He’s going to be the Ace of this staff by the All-Star Break. Ludwick? Oft Injured? Wouldn’t really know about that. He had a nice year in 12. To bad he busted his shoulder going all out on Opening Day trying to make it to 3rd. Things happen, dude got hurt playing the game the right way. That’s all we ask. Arroyo seeking employment elsewhere? Again, like Choo, we all knew going into this year Bronson was in his last season here. His salary, the developments of younger guys like Cingrani, Stevenson, etc…. We all knew this was it for him here. Sad to see him go because he’s a great dude but the $ oesn’t add up considering other needs. Cueto is a wild card, I’m just glad we have the starting depth to cover any further injury. Your comments on Leake have no foundation. Have you not seen him pitch before?

      • junglerat524 - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:21 PM

        my mistake, they didn’t sign Choo to a 1 year deal, they traded for the 1 year left on his contract. Same argument applies. They knew it was 1 year & hoped he did well enough they couldn’t afford him.

    • jm91rs - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:38 PM

      Choo is obviously moving on, can’t afford him and if I remember correctly, last year you were very quick to point out the defensive liabilities of Choo in center.
      I haven’t heard that Votto is unhappy, although I wouldn’t be surprised since his talent for getting on base is obviously unappreciated here.
      Dusty being gone can only be a good thing.
      Phillips is unhappy, but it looks like he’s not going anywhere. A former player told me he’s not sure but thinks Phillips is likely the chemistry problem other players have hinted at.
      Frazier and Cozart are the same guy, one of them should probably go. They’d love to not have Ludwick under contract but no one would take him.
      Latos should be fine, Cueto pitched well before the big windup so I think he’ll still be a good #2 at worst, ace again at best. Cingrani is young, he’s not pitching as much as he’s just throwing. He’ll get better. Leake only needs to be good enough to be a #4 pitcher, and he will be. Bailey is gone only if there’s a huge package to be offered in return and if Chapman moves to the rotation.
      I don’t see how they can be as good as last year with the loss of Choo, but there’s enough talent to put together another playoff run.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:21 PM

        I replied, in length, but once again Word Press deleted my response, just like it did to your fellow Reds defender junglerat. And I do not repeat deleted posts.

  6. karlkolchak - Dec 4, 2013 at 11:42 AM

    Oh sure, blame it on the holidays. That’s why bthere haven’t been ANY other deals getting done.

    • jm91rs - Dec 4, 2013 at 12:40 PM

      I think that’s a nice way of saying “we talked to Boras and after the conversation we told him to wish Choo a happy Holidays and good luck next year with a big budget team.”

  7. stew48 - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    I like the comments here, since so little utter nonsense appears. I just want to say that any manager who didn’t know Bruce was the permanent #4 hitter should be gone. He should have batted #4 against lefties, righties and ambidextrous guys. BTW, if Phillips is a team problem, someone needs to find the solution, OTHER THAN trading him. That much talent does not exist at Walmart, or any other cheap market. However, I doubt many on the team would agree to sending him to the Cubs.

    • villain612 - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:55 PM

      I agree completely. Bruce needs to be hitting cleanup. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe since 2010, he’s led the league in LvsL home runs? Due to his age of 26, I also feel he has a little more upside than his current numbers since he is entering his prime. Power hitters usually do their best between 27-30?

      Another reason to put bruce at #4 – it means Joey Votto will get A LOT more pitches to hit in the #3 hole in my opinion.

      • spudchukar - Dec 4, 2013 at 9:21 PM

        But he will just take them, hoping he can induce a walk.

  8. villain612 - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:44 PM

    I like Choo a lot but if the cost to keep him is in the 5 year/100 million range, then the Reds need to look elsewhere. I’d rather lock down Bruce, who is 26 and entering the prime of his career, than enter into another 9 figure longterm deal for a 31 year old coming off a career year. I wish Choo the best. Thank you for a great year in Cincinnati.

  9. tonyz6060chevy - Dec 5, 2013 at 9:42 AM

    All you have to say os Scott Boras is Choo’s agent, Choo will will probably sign with the Yankees, since Scott Boras is a Yankee’s Boy!

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