UNSOLICITED OBSEERVATIONS from The Man Cave, where I will sit tonight passing out Halloween candy (I’m saving the Reese’s Cups for myself).
The Cincinnati Reds did some paper shuffling Monday, nothing yet to cause conversations at the local pubs.
—As expected, they picked up the $12 million option on second baseman Brandon Phillips, keeping him under contract for the 2012 season.
Now they must negotiate with Phillips and his representatives for a new long-term contract that would begin in 2013 — and that one could get sticky. How much can they pay him? How much does he want? He says he wants to stay in Cincinnati and finish his career in Cincinnati. So…how long will he go?
—Also as expected, the Reds declined the $12 million option on closer Francisco Cordero, making him a free agent. But they can still re-sign him and he says he wants to stay. And it’s the same thing with Cordero. How much does he want to stay and how low will he go as far as numbers on a new contract.
—Ever hear of Denis Phipps? He’s the newest player on the Reds 40-man roster. He has played in the minors for seven years and the Reds placed him on the roster to protect him from the Rule 5 draft at the winter meetings in December.
Phipps, 26, is an outfielder who played two years in Dayton, hitting .238 in 2007 and .255 in 2008.
But he blossomed last year, splitting time at Class AA Carolina and Class AAA Louisville. He hit .328 in 82 games at Carolina and he hit .380 in 173 plate appearances at Louisville, with a .428 on-base average. And he combined for 12 home runs and 64 runs batted in.
The Reds lost lefthanded pitcher Matt Maloney, claimed off waivers by the Minnesota Twins. Relief pitcher Jared Burton and starting pitcher Daryl Thompson were optioned to Louisville.
THE WORLD SERIES is still a vivid memory and they just had the parade for the St. Louis Cardinals, but Las Vegas can’t wait.
They’ve already posted odds for the 2012 World Series champion. And they are showing no respect for the Cardinals, perhaps believing that manager Tony LaRussa’ retirement and first baseman Albert Pujols’ possible departure might make a difference.
The Cardinals are only 14 to 1 to repeat. They are behind Philadelphia (4 to 1), the New York Yankees (13 to 2), Boston (8 to 1), Texas (12 to 1) and equal with Detroit (12 to 1).
The Reds? They are 25 to 1, the same as — are you ready for this? — the Chicago Cubs. Highest odds belong to Houston, 100 to 1.
Gets your bets down now because these odds will change after winter trades and free agent signings.
THEY EVEN have odds on where free agent Albert Pujols will sign. The favorites are the Chicago Cubs at 7 to 4, with the Cardinals at 2 to 1 to re-sign him.
They list ten teams as possible landing sites for Pujols, but the Reds aren’t one of them.
SPEAKING OF Phillips, he and two other Reds are finalists for Gold Gloves, which will be announced this week. Also in the running is Jay Bruce and Joey Votto.
Phillips, Bruce, Scott Rolen and Bronson Arroyo won Gold Gloves last year, but Rolen and Arroyo are not in the running this year.Tweet