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Will Champan, Cueto or Leake Be Traded by the Reds?

The Cincinnati Reds could be parting with Aroldis Chapman and Johnny Cueto as speculation abounds about both pitchers moving on to other clubs. There is also talk of Mike Leake and Brandon Phillips moving on as well.

Chapman might be one of the best closers in all of baseball, but his value is not that high when playing for a losing team.

The 27-year old will become a free agent after the 2016 season and the Cincinnati Red might be faced with a big dilemma regarding his future with their franchise.

It has been speculated that the Washington Nationals are exploring the possibility of a trade for the southpaw reliever. Any deal that is being discussed by the teams remains in the very early stages.

Last December Walt Jocketty the general manager for Cincinnati said he would maintain an open mind regarding all offers for the Reds’ Chapman.

It has been noted by a columnist from Washington that the Nationals are interested in Chapman and have been for quite a while.

The idea of trading Chapman at first might seem crazy by the Reds, as in his six MLB seasons, the southpaw from Cuba has a career ERA of 2.31 in more than 280 innings

More important, he has 475 strikeouts, which equates to 15.3 per every nine innings. He only has a contract through 2016, and then is free to move.

If they were to trade Chapman, they could receive some young prospects that could help rebuild the squad, as it might be necessary to do if Cueto is traded or leaves during the upcoming offseason.

It has been reported that Cueto as well as Mike Leake both starting pitchers for the Reds are being looked at by the San Francisco Giants. Giants’ team officials watched Cueto’s start this past Friday versus the Cubs and stayed to watch Leake start on Saturday.

Leake is 3-4 with an ERA of 4.35 on the season but is pitching in one of the league’s most hitter friendly ballparks.

Cueto has the bigger name, but will also have a price tag that is much higher. Numerous teams are reported to be interested in the right-hander. The 29-year old this season is 4-4 with an ERA of 2.85.

In addition, there has been talk of Brandon Phillips the Reds second baseman being traded therefore it is likely at least one of – Chapman, Cueto, Leake or Phillips – will be wearing a different uniform prior to the July 31 deadline.

For a team to take Cueto they would have to give up a couple of good prospects as well as a player who can play now in the majors and that means it might be more difficult for him to be traded than Leake, Chapman or Phillips.

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