Votto wins Best Player-Fan Interaction Award

All-Star accepts honor on behalf of late Reds fan 'Superbubz'

Votto wins Best Player-Fan Interaction Award

CINCINNATI -- It was a dream moment for any baseball-loving child. A 6-year-old boy, Walter Herbert, was sitting in the front row of a Mets-Reds game on Aug. 31, and his favorite player, Joey Votto, hit a home run in the seventh inning of a 7-2 Reds win.

But Votto didn't just hit a timely home run, he followed it up by giving Herbert a high-five and the jersey off his back.

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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.

Reds bring back Kivlehan on Minors deal

Reds bring back Kivlehan on Minors deal

CINCINNATI -- The Reds brought back outfielder/infielder Patrick Kivlehan on Saturday. Kivlehan was re-signed to a Minor League contract and invited to big league camp for Spring Training.

Kivlehan, 27, spent all of the 2017 season in the big leagues with the Reds as a role player. He played first base, third base and all three outfield spots.

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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.

Votto 2nd in historically tight MVP vote

Reds first baseman finishes 2 points behind Stanton

Votto 2nd in historically tight MVP vote

CINCINNATI -- Joey Votto just missed winning his second National League Most Valuable Player Award.

Miami's Giancarlo Stanton won the NL MVP on Thursday in one of the closest voting results by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Votto was second, while Arizona's Paul Goldschmidt finished third.

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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.

Reds sign two outfielders to Minors deals

Reds sign two outfielders to Minors deals

CINCINNATI -- The Reds signed a pair of outfielders, Mason Williams and Rosell Herrera, to Minor League contracts on Friday and invited both to Major League camp at Spring Training.

Williams, 26, had spent his entire pro career with the Yankees since being drafted in 2010. He was at Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre for most of 2017 and batted .263/.309/.318 with two home runs and 30 RBIs in 106 games. Williams also played five big league games for New York and was 4-for-16.

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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.

Reds 'sorting out who is here for the long haul'

Williams addresses offseason topics at GM Meetings in Orlando

Reds 'sorting out who is here for the long haul'

CINCINNATI -- If the Reds do any significant offseason transactions, it usually starts after the Winter Meetings in December. However, they've also been known to make a deal or two at those meetings over the years. Either way, the foundation for much of their offseason work is often laid during the General Managers Meetings.

That continued on Tuesday during the second day of meetings in Orlando, Fla.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Reds get Competitive Balance pick in '18 Draft

Reds get Competitive Balance pick in '18 Draft

With the conclusion of the 2017 regular season, the preliminary order for the 2018 Draft took some shape, thanks to the reverse order of the standings. The Tigers and Giants finished tied with the worst record in the Major Leagues last season, but Detroit was awarded the No. 1 pick in the 2018 Draft by virtue of having a lower winning percentage in 2016.

After the Tigers and Giants, the next eight picks go to the Phillies, White Sox, Reds, Mets, Padres, Braves, A's and Pirates.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reds sign lefty Mantiply to Minors contract

Reds sign lefty Mantiply to Minors contract

CINCINNATI -- The Reds added another reliever to compete for a bullpen spot on Tuesday when left-hander Joe Mantiply was signed to a Minor League contract. The deal came with an invitation to big league camp for Spring Training.

Mantiply, 26, spent all of the 2017 season in the Yankees' organization at Triple-A Scranton-Wilkes Barre and had a 2.83 ERA in 35 games, including six starts. In 70 innings, he allowed 72 hits and 18 walks, with 62 strikeouts.

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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.

Reds' youngsters likely to draw interest

Reds' youngsters likely to draw interest

CINCINNATI -- The Reds' 40-man roster carries just three players age 30 or older, leaving a lot of young talent that the club likes. That includes numerous pitchers that could be attractive to other teams. But as he began the annual General Managers Meetings on Monday in Orlando, Fla., Reds GM Dick Williams wasn't overly interested in dealing from his depth of youth.

"Right now, I feel like our team is in a pretty good place," Williams told MLB.com's Joe Frisaro during a break from the meetings. "I want them to keep growing. I want to keep them together. I don't foresee a lot of subtractions."

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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.

Reds to try Senzel at multiple positions in camp

GM Williams on No. 1 prospect: 'He's got the talent' to play all over diamond

Reds to try Senzel at multiple positions in camp

CINCINNATI -- The Reds' No. 1 prospect, Nick Senzel, will need to purchase some new gloves for some different positions next year.

Senzel was drafted second overall in 2016 as a third baseman, and he has seen time solely at the hot corner amid his express lane through the system. When Senzel arrives at his first big league Spring Training in February, he will be given looks at multiple spots.

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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.

Barnhart wins first career Gold Glove

Catcher is first Cincinnati backstop to win since Johnny Bench in '77

Barnhart wins first career Gold Glove

CINCINNATI -- Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart has completed his evolution from reliable backup to injury replacement to elite backstop and Rawlings Gold Glove Award winner.

On Tuesday, Barnhart beat out veterans Yadier Molina of the Cardinals and Buster Posey of the Giants to win the National League Gold Glove at catcher. Posey won the award in 2016, while Molina won eight straight years before that.

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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.

Source: Reds sign Quackenbush to Minors deal

Source: Reds sign Quackenbush to Minors deal

CINCINNATI -- The Reds made their first move to add veteran help to their bullpen on Wednesday when they signed right-handed reliever Kevin Quackenbush to a Minor League contract, according to a source.

The club has not confirmed Quackenbush's deal, but it comes with an invitation to big league camp at Spring Training.

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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.

Tickets for Redsfest 2017 on sale now

Annual fan convention will feature star-studded guest list, including Votto, Barnhart

Tickets for Redsfest 2017 on sale now

CINCINNATI -- Tickets for the annual baseball fan spectacular, Redsfest, are now on sale.

Fox Sports Ohio Redsfest presented by PNC Bank is scheduled for Dec. 1-2 at Duke Energy Convention Center in downtown Cincinnati. Two-day tickets are $25 for adults and $12 for kids 12 and younger. One-day tickets are $17 for adults and $7 for kids. Children three and under are admitted free.

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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.

Bernardino's spin turns heads in Fall Stars Game

Bernardino's spin turns heads in Fall Stars Game

While the stars of today were wrapping up the postseason, the stars of tomorrow have been showing off their skills out west in the Arizona Fall League. On Saturday, with the Major League calendar completed, many of baseball's best prospects took the stage in front of a national audience.

The Fall Stars Game has offered first glimpses of many of the game's current superstars, from Mike Trout to Kris Bryant to Byron Buxton, as scouting reports met with the eye-test for fans looking toward the future. But with the game at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale, Ariz., we've gained another tool at our disposal: Statcast™'s player tracking technology. While characteristics like fastball command for pitchers or plate discipline for hitters usually takes time to develop, Statcast™ shows us some of the raw tools these prospects already possess. High spin rates, scorching exit velocities and off-the-chart speed are traits that don't necessarily need large sample sizes to analyze.

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Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Source: No qualifying offer for Cozart

Source: No qualifying offer for Cozart

CINCINNATI -- In an expected decision on Monday as the free-agent market opened for business, MLB.com learned via a source that the Reds will not extend a qualifying offer to shortstop Zack Cozart.

Teams have until 5 p.m. ET on Monday to make qualifying offers of $17.4 million to their own free agents, a figure set by the average of the top 125 salaries in baseball. If an offer is made, players have 10 days to accept, and if it is declined, the team is eligible for a compensation pick in the 2018 Draft.

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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.

Reds seek veteran arms for rotation, 'pen

Front office targets experienced hurlers to complement young prospects

Reds seek veteran arms for rotation, 'pen

CINCINNATI -- The Reds rarely go big when it comes to landing free agents. Despite having some holes to fill heading into the 2018 season, don't expect that to change.

That doesn't mean that Reds general manager Dick Williams won't be talking or negotiating with available players, however.

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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.

3 questions loom for Reds during offseason

3 questions loom for Reds during offseason

CINCINNATI -- The World Series is over and the immediate transition into the Hot Stove season is underway for the Reds. Following a 94-loss 2017 season -- their third in a row of more than 90 losses -- there is plenty of work to do for general manager Dick Williams and the front office.

While Cincinnati featured a deep lineup that had a club-record six players with at least 20 home runs, the team's collection of pitchers fell well short of helping the team become more competitive.

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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.

Bells making Fall League a family affair

Father Jay managing Brantley on Scottsdale squad

Bells making Fall League a family affair

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Fall League -- with players and coaches from different organizations sharing a single clubhouse -- often acts as a place for new friendships and bonds to form.

For the Bells, the Fall League is an opportunity to strengthen a bond between father and son.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kivlehan, McGuire sent outright to Triple-A

DeSclafani, Finnegan activated from 60-day DL

Kivlehan, McGuire sent outright to Triple-A

CINCINNATI -- The Reds had multiple transactions on Friday that left 33 players on their 40-man roster and created space to protect players for December's Rule 5 Draft.

Outfielder Patrick Kivlehan and pitcher Deck McGuire were sent outright to Triple-A Louisville. And in two procedural moves, starting pitchers Anthony DeSclafani and Brandon Finnegan were activated from the 60-day disabled list.

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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.

Command a priority as Reed eyes rotation

Reds lefty focused on mechanics after disappointing 2017 campaign

Command a priority as Reed eyes rotation

CINCINNATI -- When the Reds made a pre-non-waiver Trade Deadline deal in July 2015 to send ace starter Johnny Cueto to the Royals for three lefty pitching prospects, there were obviously high hopes on the return. Acquired along with Brandon Finnegan and John Lamb, Cody Reed realizes things haven't gone too well the past year.

Reed was hit hard in 2016 and struggled with his command in '17. That hasn't dashed his expectations for the '18 season, when Reed hopes to have another crack at the rotation.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Sparks ignites offense with two homers in AFL

Sparks ignites offense with two homers in AFL

PEORIA, Ariz. -- When hitters come up to the plate during Arizona Fall League games at Peoria Stadium, their 2017 regular season stats are put up on the video scoreboard beyond the left field wall. For Reds third baseman Taylor Sparks, who was visiting with his Scottsdale Scorpions against the Javelinas on Wednesday afternoon, that means a .199 average compiled over 57 games in an injury-shortened lost campaign.

Rather than let it bother him, Sparks shakes it off and lets his bat do the talking, as he did with a two-homer performance that helped the Scorpions top the Javelinas, 7-5.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bell returns to Reds in senior advisor role

Bell returns to Reds in senior advisor role

CINCINNATI -- Cincinnati native Buddy Bell was so thrilled about returning to the Reds and working in his hometown that he wasted no time in finding a new place to live in the area.

The Reds announced on Monday that Bell, 66, is joining the organization's front office to become a vice president and senior advisor to general manager and president of baseball operations Dick Williams.

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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.

Reds claim utility man Johnson from Braves

Reds claim utility man Johnson from Braves

The Reds announced on Thursday that they've claimed utility second baseman and outfielder Micah Johnson off waivers from the Braves.

Johnson, 26, played in just 18 games last year, 11 plate appearances, and was largely limited due to a wrist injury. He began the year on the disabled list and was eventually transferred to the 60-day DL.

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Daniel Kramer is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver. Follow him on Twitter at @DKramer_. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Findlay pushes back Opening Day parade

Due to holidays, market merchants vote to hold annual event prior to fourth game of season

Findlay pushes back Opening Day parade

CINCINNATI -- In a new twist on a storied tradition, borne out of necessity, the 99th annual Findlay Market Opening Day Parade will not be held on Opening Day 2018.

With the Major League Baseball schedule moved up by one week next season, Opening Day is March 29 against the Nationals. The Findlay Market Parade will be held April 2, ahead of the fourth game of the season vs. the Cubs.

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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.

Peralta secures key 'pen role with stellar season

Rookie had 3.76 ERA in 69 games; slated to be left-handed setup man in '18

Peralta secures key 'pen role with stellar season

CINCINNATI -- There is some mystery about the makeup of the Reds' bullpen heading into 2018, specifically regarding who bridges the gap between the starters and closer Raisel Iglesias.

One spot is already locked up, however: the left-handed setup man. That job belongs to Wandy Peralta.

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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.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Reds' Arizona Fall League overview

Trahan motivated by Altuve, looking to take next step in AFL

Reds' Arizona Fall League overview

Blake Trahan has heard it before. At 5-foot-9, he's been told at various stages in his career, from high school to a fine college career at Louisiana-Lafayette, to today, that he isn't big enough to succeed. Like with many undersized players, he uses those doubts as fuel and feels fortunate to have a big league role model to follow.

"A lot of professional athletes are bigger guys," said Trahan, who played well enough at Louisiana-Lafayette to land with the Reds in the third round of the 2015 Draft. "But you look at [Jose] Altuve, he has the chance to win MVP. He's put a lot of hope in the little guy's heart, learning from him, seeing what he does. Us little guys, we have to have that edge. We have to be able to play harder than everybody else."

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Who is poised for breakout on Reds?

Beat reporter Mark Sheldon answers questions from fans

Inbox: Who is poised for breakout on Reds?

Which young pitcher do you think has the best chance to be a quality starter next season?
-- Shawn R., Vancouver, Wash.

Luis Castillo has every chance to have a breakout 2018 campaign. His 3-7 record in '17 is deceptive, as his other numbers show he was solid. He posted a 3.12 ERA in 15 starts (eight quality starts), with a 1.075 WHIP over 89 1/3 innings. This all came after being promoted to the big leagues from Double-A, skipping a Triple-A stint.

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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.

Peraza refining skills in winter ball in Venezuela

Peraza refining skills in winter ball in Venezuela

CINCINNATI -- While many of his teammates are getting settled in for their offseason and resting their bodies after the grind of a 162-game schedule, Reds infielder Jose Peraza took very little time off.

Peraza joined his Venezuelan winter ball club, Magallanes, on Saturday and played in his first game on Tuesday. He was 2-for-4 with a triple, a stolen base and a run scored.

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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.

Finnegan 'completely healed,' ready for 2018

After injuries to both shoulders, Reds lefty looking forward to 'normal offseason'

Finnegan 'completely healed,' ready for 2018

CINCINNATI -- Despite having injuries on or near both shoulders and being limited to four starts in 2017, Reds left-handed pitcher Brandon Finnegan went into his offseason with optimism.

"I will just have a normal offseason. I'm completely healed, both sides," Finnegan said late in September. "I've got more rotation in my right shoulder than I had before I got hurt. That's a good thing. I'll start working out in November and throwing in December. I'll keep up with my running, and that's it."

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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.

Morgan named Frick Award finalist

Morgan named Frick Award finalist

The Baseball Hall of Fame announced its finalists for the 2018 Ford C. Frick Award on Monday, with eight announcers in contention for one of the highest honors in baseball broadcasting.

The finalists are, in alphabetical order, Buddy Blattner, Joe Buck, Bob Costas, Dizzy Dean, Don Drysdale, Al Michaels, Joe Morgan and Pee Wee Reese.

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Jack Baer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.