Uncertainty ahead of Deadline not consuming Price

Manager has formed strong connections with several vets who could be dealt

Uncertainty ahead of Deadline not consuming Price

DENVER -- Reds manager Bryan Price is often kept apprised about the ongoing trade talks his boss, general manager Walt Jocketty, engages in ahead of the non-waiver Trade Deadline on Friday.

Price also hears many of the rumors that might come from outside of the organization. But he doesn't let the uncertainty of the next week consume him as rumors fly about long-time players like Johnny Cueto, Jay Bruce, Mike Leake and others.

"I take whatever information that I might get, or speculation, with a grain of salt," Price said on Saturday. "I don't know how much of it means anything until there's an actual decision to No. 1, trade a player and No. 2, get the pieces you want in return.

"More than anything, you have all the speculation and that's all I'm left to do -- is speculate on what might happen. Until something does happen, I think I'm kind of like anybody else -- keep my ears open and my mouth shut."

Shortly after Price's afternoon session with the media, he and Jocketty met in the manager's office for an extended period. As of game time against the Rockies, there were no deals to report and Cueto took the mound as scheduled.

Cincinnati is seeking to retool for the future as it entered the day 19 games out of first place in the National League Central and 9 1/2 games back for an NL Wild Card spot. Jocketty told MLB.com earlier this week that he is seeking younger players with the ability of having longer club control contractually. Cueto and Leake will be free agents after the season, along with Marlon Byrd and Brayan Pena.

Beyond the baseball ramifications that come with any trade the Reds may make before 4 p.m. ET on Friday, there is also a human element.

When Price became the Reds' pitching coach in 2010, under then-manager Dusty Baker, Cueto was still a young pitcher with only two years in the big leagues. Leake was a rookie who jumped from college straight to the big leagues. Aroldis Chapman was in his first year with the club after he defected from Cuba the previous year.

It makes the specter of parting with players a trying time, emotionally.

"Sure, it's absolutely difficult," Price said. "If any of them happen to be moved, then you're going to lose that daily connection. There's a daily connection that we have with our players and for me personally, I'm not the longest tenured [person], but a lot of these guys have been here for the six years that I've been here. I'm very familiar with them and they are with me."

Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.