Reds willing to listen to offers for Chapman?

There’s been widespread speculation this offseason that the Reds would likely need to trade away one of their four starting pitchers entering the final year of their contracts in order to free up some payroll. What has not been discussed — but is apparently a possibility, according to MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro — is moving shutdown closer Aroldis Chapman.

Though purely speculation at this point, Frisaro discusses the Marlins as a potential fit for the fireball-throwing left-hander. Chapman is projected by MLBTradeRumors.com to make $8.3 million in arbitration for next season and then has another year of arbitration eligibility before potentially hitting the free agent market following the 2016 season.

All things considered, it would certainly take a significant haul to land the 26-year-old Chapman, who is already regarded as one of the top closers in the game and is under team control — at an afforadable rate, no less — for the next two years.

The more likely scenario for the Reds is moving one of their starting pitchers. Staff ace Johnny Cueto is set to make $10 million in his option year next season, while Mat Latos, Mike Leake and Alfredo Simon are all third-year arbitration eligible. In other words, all four of those starters will be free agents following the 2015 season.

The Reds remain in the market for a left fielder, though it’s becoming increasingly likely that they will need to move at least one pitcher in order to free up enough payroll to either trade for or sign a player to fill that void. The four starters mentioned above make the most sense, but if the club ultimately ends up in firesale mode this offseason, Chapman’s name could enter the discussions.

— Paul Casella

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