2020 Reds

Report: Reds sign free agent OF Shogo Akiyama


From the Twitterverse (from Gingersaurus Rex), no confirmation yet:

Via Google Translate:

[Breaking news]
Reds signs agreement with FA Shogo Akiyama (OF / 31) for more than $ 15 million for three years.

2019 results
143 games (678 at bats)
Batting average .303
20 home runs
Base rate.392
OPS.864

More on this as the news develops.

Quick thoughts on signing (report still unconfirmed): Akiyama turns 32 on April 16. This is the best scouting report on him that I’d seen as of a couple days ago. Was an excellent CF but age-related decline has set in. From the linked scouting report: “Once a terrific defensive center fielder with an above-average arm and very good range, Akiyama’s defensive results as tracked by Delta Graphs and Win Shares show a steady decline.” Small dimensions of GABP may be a lifeline for that, at least for now.

Akiyama is rehabbing a broken toe on his right foot.

Good contact and on-base skills with OK power. No obvious place for him to play without other roster moves. If game translates to MLB and he can play a capable CF, it’s good for club depth. Rest of the CF free agent pool was uninspiring. $15 million isn’t much money over three years, if those are the terms.

Where is he going to play?

Steve Mancuso is a lifelong Reds fan who grew up during the Big Red Machine era. He’s been writing about the Reds for ten years. Steve’s fondest memories about the Reds include attending a couple 1975 World Series games, being at Homer Bailey’s second no-hitter and going nuts for Jay Bruce and Clinchmas. Steve was also at all three games of the 2012 NLDS, but it’s too soon to talk about that.

4 Comments

  • pinson343

    I like this as of now, but am waiting to see what the Reds do next. A lot obviously depends on whether his on base skills translate.

    Regardless of where he plays in the OF, the Reds now have 3 OFers who can play decent defense (I’m counting Aquino and of course Senzel). The defense in LF last year was atrocious. Winker has range issues and generally doesn’t dive for catchable balls, but I’m not even talking about him. Van Meter showed me that playing LF is much more difficult than it usually looks, and Peraza was almost as bad. No more IFers in the OF please, you need depth.

    The Reds could not count on getting Castellano or Ozuna, Castellano has publicly expressed a preference for other teams and there will be a bidding war for both that will likely result in a serious overpay.

    What’s the updated estimate on how much more the Reds will spend this off-season ?

    • Steve Mancuso

      I like Akiyama for depth or as a replacement CF for Senzel if he’s traded. He’d be OK as a corner guy. But I like the “depth” role better at $10m/2y. To me, if they go above $20m, that’s too expensive for a guy to just throw in the mix. You’ll start him most nights.

      Based on the number I started the offseason with ($140 million) if Akiyama in 2020 is $6-$7 million, that would leave about $10 million. They haven’t done any relievers yet. I’d hate to think they were basically done now. Possible they’ll go well above $140m.

  • Craig Slater

    @PINSON343 At this point we don’t know what we have in Aquino. Can he translate into a serviceable Right Fielder and have a decent season or was he just a flash in the pan ? We shall find out this coming season. As for Winker, too inconsistent. 43 days till Spring Training. I don’t the Reds are done yet with player moves..if they fit.