The Reds have two of the top catching prospects in the game, but also want to keep current catcher Ryan Hanigan around, as the team agreed to a three-year, $4 million extension, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney.
Reds general manager Walt Jocketty wouldn't confirm the deal when reached by the Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay, but Jocketty doesn't usually confirm deals until they are official. Jocketty told Fay the two sides were "close." Olney writes Hanigan can make up to $800,000 more based on playing time.
Hanigan, 30, hit .300/.405/.429 last season and has a career .379 on-base percentage. He is also an excellent defensive catcher. He is scheduled to be arbitration-eligible after the season. Jocketty has shown a propensity to buy out arbitration years. This offseason, the Reds bought out the arbitration years of Joey Votto, Jay Bruce and Johnny Cueto. They tried to do the same with Edinson Volquez.
Cincinnati has Devin Mesoraco and Yasmani Grandal in the minors waiting their turn. Mesoraco was the team's minor league player of the year in 2010 and Grandal was the team's first-round pick in last year's draft. Both are 22.
"We've said no," Jocketty told the Enquirer. "We don't want to give up our surplus."
Hernandez is signed to a one-year deal worth $3 million.
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