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Reds fail to sign an impact free agent shortstop

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The music stopped, the Reds looked around, and there wasn’t an empty chair to be found.

Philadelphia Phillies v Tampa Bay Rays
Not a Red.
Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

The last of the available shortstops available in free agency has fallen off the board.

If the Reds had one thing they had to address in this offseason, it was getting more production from the shortstop position. After letting Freddy Galvis go in free agency, they’d been linked with Andrelton Simmons (now a Twin), Marcus Semien (now a Jay), and a player that they signed and developed before watching him make a name for himself elsewhere in Didi Gregorius.

As was written about in this space a few days ago, Gregorius was the corner that the Reds backed themselves into. The remaining free agents at this point are uninspiring as big league starters. There could be a trade fit out there, but the pipe dream of trading for Trevor Story isn’t going to happen without money to pay his salary.

Where does that leave the Reds? They have the three shortstops that remain on their roster. Jose Garcia still seems like the shortstop of the future, but could use some more seasoning in the minor leagues assuming those happen this year. Kyle Farmer is a guy they didn’t even tend a contract to before resigning him, and hadn’t played shortstop since college when the Reds had him fill in there in 2019. Alex Blandino is also on the roster.

That’s it. Some competition there won’t hurt going into spring, and there will likely be another question mark added to that list, but nothing on the level that you’d expect from one of Simmons, Semien, or Gregorius. Who knows how this will shake out for the Reds, but it looks like they may have missed their last chance to improve their biggest offensive weak spot from last year.