Reds Reportedly Shed Long, But 2019 Intentions Are Still Gray

Written by: Ray Butler

Follow us on Twitter! @Prospects365

Not going to lie, I’m mostly writing this article because of the killer headline. But let’s discuss the Sonny Gray-for-Shed Long trade for a moment anyways.

Earlier tonight, this popped up on most of our Twitter feeds:

fullsizerender (2)

Nothing has officially been announced by either organization yet, but it certainly seems imminent. As a prospect writer, I’ll tackle the Yankees’ side of this trade first. I ranked Long 101st in my 2018 midseason rankings, though the second baseman has slid a little since. He’s still a top-200 prospect though, and Yankees fans are rightfully content with the return for a pitcher who posted a 4.90 ERA in 130.1 IP (1.7 WAR) with the club last season. I won’t spoil Long’s write-up in my upcoming prospect list, but the short version is a 23-year-old second baseman with who I’ve got as 50-hit, 55-raw, 55-speed. The defensive skills are pretty fringy, but there not so poor that a move away from the keystone is imminent. All, in all, Yankees fans should be pleased with Brian Cashman’s work in acquiring a top-200 prospect for a pitcher the organization didn’t organically have room for.

As of the publishing of this piece, there are no additional details on the draft pick or ‘3rd lesser piece’ referenced in Heyman’s tweet.

Reds fans should be pleased too. Joey Votto will play the 2019 season as a 35-year-old, and it’s been undoubtedly obvious this offseason that the decision-makers within Cincinnati’s organization are doing everything in their power to give the team a chance to contend this season. With the Reds, Sonny Gray gets to reunite with his pitching coach from Vanderbilt (Derek Johnson). Great American Ball Park isn’t exactly the most pitcher-friendly confine, but at least the right-hander is away from the hellacious AL East. Still only 29-years-old, Gray now joins Luis Castillo, Alex Wood, Tanner Roark and Anthony DeSclafani in what I consider an underrated rotation. The preseason projections I’ve seen had Gray pegged as a reliever, so we’ll have to wait and see how they alter now that his role is more defined.

One more thing: let’s stop moving the goal posts of our expectations of big league organizations. We (rightfully) crucify teams when they make questionable moves that  obviously won’t help their team win. Their moves haven’t exactly been star-studded, but it’s obvious the Reds are setting themselves up to try to contend as the sun begins to set for one of the best players of this century (Votto). Let’s give credit where credit is due once in a blue moon when a team actually tries to improve the quality of their active roster.

Follow us on Twitter! @Prospects365

Featured image courtesy of photographer Barrett McClean and

Purchased our VIP membership yet? If not, check out what it’s all about right here. (Reds fans: It involves a Taylor Trammell giveaway) 

Leave a Reply