Reds' DeSclafani unfazed by trade rumors

Reds' DeSclafani unfazed by trade rumors

CINCINNATI - Heading into the Trade Deadline season, the Reds were widely expected to deal right fielder Jay Bruce and possibly shortstop Zack Cozart. But the biggest demand and thinnest market now appears to be for starting pitchers.

That has added an unexpected name to the Reds-related rumor mill in Anthony DeSclafani. On Friday, MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported that DeSclafani is one of the starters being considered by the Rangers to pursue.

Besides being 5-0 with a 2.50 ERA in eight starts this season since returning from a left oblique strain, the biggest reason the 26-year-old DeSclafani would be attractive to clubs is he is under club control for four more seasons after this year.

Because of his relatively cheap contractual situation, the Reds would be in position to have a high asking price for DeSclafani. The right-hander is also a younger pitcher that can eat up innings -- he tossed 184 2/3 innings in 2015 during his first full season and has worked at least six innings in seven starts in '16.

Texas is reportedly also looking at Chris Archer from the Rays and Chris Sale of the White Sox. According to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan, Chicago would want Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar and Triple-A third baseman Joey Gallo, the club's No. 1 prospect.

While DeSclafani could also bring a somewhat lesser -- but still nice -- return, what makes him attractive is also why the Reds would not want to move him. He can dependably anchor their young rotation and still be around when Cincinnati's rebuilding phase in completed. His continued success could also increase his value next year, and waiting also buys time for the other young pitchers to gain traction in the big leagues.

"I'm not fazed by it now," DeSclafani told MLB.com on Saturday. "I was more curious than anything having rumors pop up and stuff. It's a business. I don't think I'm being shopped. Maybe they are listening. I couldn't tell you. I do like being a Red. I'm close to home. It's a great city to play for. I know this is a big rough patch we're in right now but it's going to go up from here and I kind of want to be a part of that over the next few years."

The non-waivers Trade Deadline is at 4 p.m. ET on Aug. 1. Reds president of baseball operations Walt Jocketty and general manager Dick Williams are in Cooperstown, N.Y., this weekend for Ken Griffey Jr.'s Hall of Fame induction. Manager Bryan Price noted he's heard little trade talk about his players lately.

"Last year there was a lot of talk and it was realistic talk about [Johnny] Cueto and [Mike] Leake," Price said. "I had a gut feeling that those trades would be consummated before the Trade Deadline. At this point in time, I don't have the same feeling about anybody on our team."

Price acknowledges that rumors can be tough and distracting for players and tries to be available to communicate with them and answer questions they might have.

"I don't like this time of year at all if you're a team that's looking to potentially move players," Price said. "It's exciting when you're thinking about adding."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. 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.