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Is Galvis now locked in as Reds' starting SS?

@m_sheldon
December 16, 2019

SAN DIEGO -- The Reds' front office kept the traffic moving in and out of their cadre of suites Tuesday as the 2019 Winter Meetings moved into its second day. But alas, there were no completed deals. "We've stayed really busy on a number of fronts," Reds president of baseball

SAN DIEGO -- The Reds' front office kept the traffic moving in and out of their cadre of suites Tuesday as the 2019 Winter Meetings moved into its second day. But alas, there were no completed deals.

"We've stayed really busy on a number of fronts," Reds president of baseball operations Dick Williams said.

Here is some insight into some of that activity for Cincinnati:

Another free agent gobbled up by Phillies

The Reds had interest in upgrading offensively at shortstop this winter, but the best-hitting shortstop on the free-agent market came off the board when Didi Gregorius agreed to a one-year, $14 million contract with the Phillies, multiple sources told MLB.com. It's the second time in roughly a week that they lost a free agent whom they pursued to Philadelphia, which nabbed starting pitcher Zack Wheeler with a five-year, $118 million contract.

Gregorius, who began his career with Cincinnati, was someone the Reds had worked on acquiring. Offensively, there is a big drop-off with the remaining free-agent shortstops -- including Jose Iglesias following one season with Cincinnati.

Unless there is a trade, all signs now point to Freddy Galvis being the regular shortstop. Galvis had his $5.5 million club option exercised shortly after the season.

"We'll be very open-minded, but we feel good enough about him that we exercised that option for a reason," Williams said of Galvis before the Gregorius news surfaced. "We've got him there. He's an everyday player at an important position. We feel like that provides us with a good floor. Then we can be opportunistic from there."

Reds manager David Bell also felt "very comfortable" about having Galvis as his shortstop and newly signed Mike Moustakas' double-play partner.

"He's as solid of a shortstop as you can get. He makes the routine plays. He has range. I have no concerns there," Bell said. "It was a great pickup last year. I also believe, seeing him over the course of the year in our ballpark, he will continue to get better offensively as well."

Outfield situation

The outfield market has been slow to move thus far, and none of the bigger names out there have picked a destination -- including Nicholas Castellanos and Marcell Ozuna.

"We've talked to everybody," Reds general manager Nick Krall said. "We're just kind of working through whether it's the free-agent market or the trade market."

Starting pitcher still wanted?

After the Reds missed out on Wheeler, Williams and Krall have continued to look at options for a starting pitcher to join Luis Castillo, Sonny Gray, Trevor Bauer and Anthony DeSclafani in the rotation. The next tier of starters available remains Hyun-Jin Ryu, Dallas Keuchel and Madison Bumgarner. It is not clear if the Reds would be willing to offer a big-money contract to any of those three like they did with Wheeler.

"In that particular case, we were willing to make a significant offer," Williams said. "It doesn't mean we'll chase that. It means, in that particular case, we saw an opportunity to make a positive impact on the club. We have a structure we were comfortable with. Ultimately it didn't pan out. We're pushing. We're trying to be creative on a lot of different fronts to find out ways to improve."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook.