Two baseball sources told MLB.com that a deal was close but terms had not been finalized. The Reds have been talking to Ludwick's agent, Dan Horwits, this week about a two-year contract offer.
Reds general manager Walt Jocketty had little to say during Redsfest.
"I expect something to be resolved the first of next week," Jocketty said.
It's Jocketty's policy not to reveal a deal is done until a player's physical is passed.
Ludwick signed a one-year, $2.5 million deal with Cincinnati as a free agent last winter and batted .275 with 26 home runs and 80 RBIs. After the season, the 34-year-old declined a $5 million mutual option and hit the open market again.
In other Hot Stove news relating to the Reds, Jocketty has had no talks with agent Scott Boras about free-agent leadoff hitter and center fielder Michael Bourn. It's not outrageous to think Bourn's options are drying up now that the Twins have traded two leadoff types to teams with needs -- Denard Span to the Nationals and Ben Revere to the Phillies. Free agents Shane Victorino and Angel Pagan also came off of the market this week.
"He would have to really fall," Jocketty said of Bourn. "I don't think so."
As for utility infielder Jack Hannahan, the Reds are among a few teams still talking to the free agent."I think he is going to go into next week. There seems to be a lot of competition," Jocketty said.