In Heyman's column he asked GMs on some possible free agent contracts. Here is the Choo tidbit.
http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/writer/...g-salary-drive3T. Shin-Soo Choo, Reds, OF: He is beautifully positioned after a big stopover in Cincinnati, and a huge September will only aid what promises to be a big winter for him. He's hitting .362 this month with a .508 on-base percentage, .681 slugging percentage and 1.189 OPS. “He's better than Ethier and Pence,'' opined the exec. “He has a high on-base percentage. He can run. He can throw. And he's a great corner outfielder.'' The exec suggested a deal for five or six years, and for $90 to $100 million.
What didn’t make the story were the prospects of Hamilton being the Reds’ center fielder in 2014. That possiblity largely hinges on the Reds’ ability to re-sign Shin-Soo Choo, who is expected to command a hefty price this winter as a first-time free agent. I recently asked Reds GM Walt Jocketty about Hamilton and Choo.
“We’re hopeful and confident we can bring Choo back. We’d like to bring Choo back,” Jocketty said. “We’ll see what happens. We’ll make a good effort to bring him back. If not, then we’ll give Billy the opportunity to see what he can do. There’s no question defensively that he’d be able play there right now and handle base running and everything else. It’s just a question with the offense. We’d have to be patient with him if he’s out there every day and let him gradually grow into it. Ideally, I’d like to work him in a little slower but we’ll see what happens.”
The Jocketty quote saying they were confident in bringing back Choo. First time they have came out and said something of that nature. All other quotes on the subject this season have been kind of setting Reds fans up for letting him go.
The only way I can see that Jocketty could say he is confident in bringing Choo back is that they've estimated they're bringing enough in to make a major raise in the budget. That's the only outcome that makes sense.
Not gonna happen. One year contract for a stop gap CFer and Billy Hamilton up sometime mid summer. Book it.
I like Walt's quote that says "We'll make a good effort to bring him back".
That's a huge change from last winter when Walt basically told us he was here for one year and then gone.
Sure, the odds of resigning Choo are relatively small, but at least the Reds are going to try. And on the flip side, I'm not sure I want the Reds to give Choo 5 years at 100 million (if that's what it takes)
Thank you Walt and Bob for bringing winning baseball back to Cincy
Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!
I will go as far to say giving Choo a 5/$100 million deal is a terrible idea for the Reds and will cripple the franchise for the next decade.
However I think Walt's comments also show that there may be a lot more flexibility in the budget than some others on this board have believed in the past.
Personally, I would make qualifying offers to both Choo and Arroyo, then try to re-sign Choo to a 3 year deal. If he wants more than that, let him get it elsewhere (which he likely will). Then, if Arroyo signs, look to trade Bailey or Chapman as the centerpiece for a young ML ready SS or OF like Profar, Bogaerts, or Pedersen/Seager. If Arroyo walks, we're in really good shape with two extra first round picks and a lot of payroll flexibility to extend Latos and another arm, as well as possibly add on some offensive talent.
Personally, before we consider Choo, I'm more concerned with trying to lock up Latos and one other big gun SP for the long term.
How much would a World Series appearance increase revenue for a team like the Reds?
Take the Giants. They got lucky that Lincecum turned down their offers for extension and looks like they would have been better suited letting Cain play out the rest of contract without extension.
Pitchers seem to produce most their value in first 5 or so seasons so I would let someone else pay for the decline. If you can not extend them early on before arb you are usually best in letting them go I think. Bailey and Latos are both too close to FA now I think to get any return value in extending.
Therefore, I re-sign Latos almost at all costs. Maybe not a 5 year deal, but definitely 3-4 years. Bailey seems to be the least likely to re-sign given his proximity to FA and his stated distaste for GABP. Who knows though - a WS appearance and some cheese could always change his mind. I'd let Cueto play out his current deal given his health questions, and I'd probably wait on Leake unless it was a very team-friendly deal- see if he can continue to build off of this year's success, and see how Cueto's health goes and how Stephenson progresses next year. If Stephenson stalls a bit, the need to extend Leake increases. However if Stephenson becomes next year's Cingrani, Reds will be in a great spot and have a lot of leverage with Leake/Bailey/Cueto.