The Cincinnati Reds were part of a three team trade in December of 2012 that also involved the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Cleveland Indians. Several players and cash were swapped in the deal but the biggest name the Reds received was Shin-Soo Choo from the Indians. Choo has been fairly productive and popular in Cleveland but it seems like on the surface the Indians got the better part of this deal.
Being a three team trade, this one becomes difficult to analyze so we’ll focus on the Reds gaining Choo. It could be a great get for them if a few things happen. First of all the Indians are paying half of his salary so it doesn’t cost them that much. That’s good. Productivity wise however, things are going to have to pick up for Choo to be a name the Reds fans love to chant.
He has shown the ability to hit in the high .200 and around .300 range for batting average. The Reds certainly need that as well as some more run production overall. I’m not saying Choo has to hit 40 homers and drive in 100 runs, but it would be nice if he could be somewhere around 20/75 mark for homers/RBI. How can he do that?
Motivation might play a factor with Choo scheduled to be a free agent after this season. Many times a player will have a career year in a contract year. Also a big deal is strikeouts. Choo struck out 150 times last season for the second time in his career. A couple of years ago Choo received enough MVP votes to rank 16th in the voting. That year he only struck out 118 times. While that certainly isn’t a great number, it beats the heck out of 150. Clearly if the Reds are to get their money’s worth out of the Choo trade, they need him to strikeout a lot less and put up some better numbers.