The Reds have all but finalized a trade with the New York Yankees to acquire Gray, but completion of the long-rumored deal is being delayed while the Reds and Gray negotiate a contract extension, according to Jon Heyman of Fancred Sports.
On Saturday, it was reported the Reds had agreed to send infield prospect Shed Long and a draft pick to New York in exchange for Gray, who will become a free agent next winter if he doesn’t ink an extension.
Should the Reds and Gray not reach an agreement, it’s possible the Yankees’ return could be changed, according to Heyman. However, it was suggested on Saturday that the Yankees could also receive a third piece of lesser value in the deal.
Cincinnati has been heavily linked to Gray throughout the offseason, in large part due to the team’s hiring of Derek Johnson – who was Gray’s college coach at Vanderbilt – as its pitching coach. The team believes Gray’s connection with Johnson will help sway him to sign a long-term deal despite the fact his would-be home stadium, Great American Ball Park, is notorious for being one of the worst pitcher’s parks in baseball.
The 29-year-old Gray avoided arbitration with the Yankees earlier this month and will earn $7.5 million in 2019.