The last few trade seasons have seen a flurry of action across Major League Baseball and, in the process, many of the best young talents in the game have changed franchises. Yoan Moncada moved from Boston to Chicago in the Chris Sale deal, Dansby Swanson was shipped to Atlanta from Arizona in the notorious Shelby Miller trade, and high-level hitters like Gleyber Torres, Eloy Jimenez, and Addison Russell have also swapped teams as top prospects in recent memory.
Right now, Nick Senzel is in that category of prospects, as the former #2 overall draftee sits firmly atop the Cincinnati Reds’ organization rankings and in the Top 10 of all prospects in the game by many prospect wonks. So, it should come as no surprise that he’s as attractive to teams not named the Reds as he is to Cincinnati, and today we learned from The Enquirer’s Zach Buchanan that at least one team has asked about his availability.
Today in Teams Will Ask About Anyone: At least one team has asked the Reds about Nick Senzel. No one has been bold enough to ask about Hunter Greene.— Zach Buchanan (@ZachENQ) December 12, 2017
First things first - just because someone asked about him, that doesn’t mean the Reds are shopping him. The Cincinnati front office has been quite vocal about their willingnes to listen to offers from other teams, but they’re finally not in a roster position to have to shop anyone if they don’t want to. With the shedding of the entire former era of Reds players (non Joey Votto edition), there’s not a contractual necessity prompting the Reds to deal any of their current crop of players or prospects. However, that’s not to say that they wouldn’t if the right offer came along, much like how they cashed in on Dan Straily a year ago when the Miami Marlins lobbed an offer at them that included Luis Castillo.
Before you freak at the notion that the Reds might actually listen to the idea of trading their top prospect, walk yourself back down the ladder of rationale for a moment. In theory, there’s only one player in all of baseball who is actually ‘untouchable,’ since you’d never consciously trade that best player around for someone worse off (with contracts factoring in here, too). No, it’s not likely the Reds would actually trade Senzel, since it’s rare that the best players and assets in the game actually become available on the trade block in the first place.
That said, Giancarlo Stanton just won an MVP and got moved, and while his contract dictated that he wouldn’t bring back the best prospects in the game, some of the other names who have been floated out as available just might.
Earlier today, our own Charlie Scrabbles looked into one of those top-tier names who’s had his name floated about in Christian Yelich. The Marlins are in fire-sale mode, and Yelich might well be on the market alongside All Star Marcell Ozuna. Teams keep calling the rebuilding Detroit Tigers about All Star and recent Rookie of the Year pitcher Michael Fulmer. Hell, even Manny Machado might be on the move as the Baltimore Orioles finally seem to be realizing that they’re not that good and their star has just one year remaining until he hits free agency. And for the same reasons the Reds would be moronic not to call each and every one of those teams and simply ask what’s it going to cost to land that guy, it would be moronic for any team in the game today to not touch base with Cincinnati and ask what would it take to land Nick Senzel.
MVPs have been traded. Top overall prospects have been, too. There’s nothing in the works that suggests Nick Senzel is on the move, but it’s much more far-fetched to assume moving him would never, ever happen. What it comes down to is simply how hard the Reds would be swinging for the fences when that happens, since rest assured that if a team calls asking what it would take to land Senzel, Cincinnati’s answer would undoubtedly be the best player on your roster right now.