NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- With the Reds winning a National League Central title in 2012, but exiting with a bitter taste in their five-game Division Series loss to the Giants, fan interest in what general manager Walt Jocketty will do to improve the team is strong.
There will be no shortage of speculation about what's next for the Reds as the 2012 Winter Meetings begin on Monday at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville. It will all be covered here up to the minute on reds.com and MLB.com.
Jocketty and his inner circle of advisors and scouts will continue to look for upgrades, mostly centered on the leadoff spot in the lineup. The Reds also have needs for a left fielder and help on the bench. The club already addressed its goal of getting a new closer when Jonathan Broxton signed a three-year, $21 million contract on Wednesday.
Part of that left-field issue could center on re-signing Ryan Ludwick, who became a free agent after one season in Cincinnati. Otherwise, don't expect the Reds to make any major investments in the free agent market.
Near the end of each day, Jocketty will hold a briefing with Cincinnati media about activity during the Meetings. Reds manager Dusty Baker is scheduled to meet with all interested reporters during a 30-minute session on Monday at 4 p.m. ET.
Sticking with tradition, the Winter Meetings wrap up on Thursday morning with the Rule 5 Draft of eligible players that were left unprotected on teams' 40-man rosters. The Reds currently have 38 players and thus two free spots on their 40-man roster.
Fans can also be part of the daily conversation online. Reds.com will feature multimedia content to provide a closer look at the happenings at the Opryland Hotel. People are also encouraged to join the discussions in the comments section below to address various issues currently facing the Reds.
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.