The Reds are interested in trading second baseman Brandon Phillips, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. The team is unhappy he insinuated upper management lied to him during contract talks. Phillips signed a six-year, $62.5 million extension last year.
Heyman reports the Reds offered Phillips to the Yankees for Brett Gardner, but were rejected. At some point before the offer was made, Phillips asked the Reds to open up his contract to add more money. Phillips does have a no-trade clause.
Yankees GM Brian Cashman told reporters at the Winter Meetings he has no intention of trading Gardner but will listen to offers out of due diligence. The team does have some interest in Phillips according to Heyman, but obviously at a lower price. New York needs a second baseman following the defection of Robinson Cano and Gardner is more easily tradeable following the Jacoby Ellsbury signing.
Phillips, 32, hit .261/.310/396 (92 OPS+) with 18 home runs and 103 RBI in 2013. He is owed $50 million over the next four years. The 30-year-old Gardner hit .273/.344/.416 (108 OPS+) with 24 stolen base this past season and is due to become a free agent next winter. Both players are above-average defenders at their position.