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Reds to sign catcher Brayan Pena; will Ryan Hanigan be available?

By Mike Axisa | Baseball Writer

Brayan Pena is the newest Cincinnati Red.
Brayan Pena is the newest Cincinnati Red. (USATSI)

The Reds have agreed to sign free-agent catcher Brayan Pena to a two-year contract, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com has confirmed. Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes first reported the agreement and says while financial details are unknown, the backstop will earn at least $1.25 million in 2014.

Pena, 31, hit .297/.315/.397 (91 OPS+) with four homers in 71 games and 243 plate appearances while throwing out 24 percent of attempted base-stealers for the Tigers in 2013. He's a career .258/.292/.359 (75 OPS+) hitter in parts of nine big-league seasons with the Braves, Royals and Tigers.

Assuming young Devin Mesoraco is untouchable, the Reds are now in position to trade catcher Ryan Hanigan. The 33-year-old hit .198/.306/.261 (58 OPS+) this past season while battling oblique and wrist problems. He has a .359 OBP since breaking into the league full-time in 2009 while throwing out roughly 40 percent of attempted base-stealers.

Clubs like the Yankees, Rays, Mets, Phillies, Blue Jays, White Sox and Rangers all figure to be in the market for catching help this winter and could have interest in Hanigan. If the Reds are unable to trade him, they could non-tender him prior to next month's deadline to save money.

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