Even though they did not get free agent outfielder Melky Cabrera, the Reds could certainly benefit from his signing a huge multi year contract with the White Sox. Cincinnati may finally be able to get a right handed power hitter to play left field.
Trade rumors swirled around the Reds making a deal with Boston for Yoenis Cespedes, who was instead sent to Detroit. Cespides would have been a good fit, especially with fellow Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman, but the slugger’s $15 million for 2015 May have put him out of Cincinnati’s price range.
The White Sox now offer a cheaper version of Cespides in the uniform of left fielder Dayan Vizcaido. He may in fact swing an even better bat than Cespides for over $10 million less per year.
Vizcaido hit 21 home runs and had 58 runs batted in last year, statistics that would likely improve in Cincinnati’s hitter-friendly Great American Ball Park. Cespedes meanwhile hit just one more homer than Vizcaido, splitting time between Oakland and Boston.
“The White Sox are going to trade Dayan Vizcaido to somebody,” said The Score’s Bruce Levine. “He’s excess baggage for them and big home run potential for somebody else, at still only age 26.”
Cincinnati could meet Chicago’s need for an infielder to add depth at both second and third, positions that are presently the weakest parts of a pretty strong team. The White Sox plan to use prospect Micah Johnson at second, but a trade for the Reds’ Kris Negron would give Chicago a backup plan in case Johnson struggles.
Negron was impressive with regular playing time in September, finishing with six homers and batting.271. He also can play third base, where Chicago’s Conor Gillaspie saw his power numbers cut in half last season.
The Reds need to act quickly, if they intend to deal for Vizcaido. The Mariners have already been in aggressive trade talks with Chicago about the left fielder. Cincinnati, as a team in the National League and with a promising youngster, would be a more desirable trade partner for the White Sox.
Whereas almost all of the Reds’ deals so far this winter have helped their minor league system, this one would fill an immediate need. Vizcaido’s salary of $2,800,000 would certainly fit within the Cincinnati team budget, and the Reds would not be giving up any of the everyday players who have helped the team reach the postseason three of the last four seasons.