Reds general manager Walt Jocketty says he considers his club still in the buyer's mode heading toward the trade deadline, even with the Reds in fourth place and four games behind the Pirates and Brewers in the NL Central.
"Yep, definitely," he said.
The Reds have been linked to Tampa Bay's James Shields and Colorado's Ubaldo Jimenez on the rumor mill.
Both are signed long-term and relatively cheap. Those are the kind of players Jocketty has targeted, but he wouldn't rule out rental players.
"I would prefer a player who's signed if we make a deal, so we control that player for a few years," Jocketty said. "But if a deal pops up, where a guy is a short-term solution, we'll look at that, too. We're looking at whatever we can do to improve the club."
Jocketty won't talk about specific players, but he has not confirmed interest in Jimenez or Shields.
"It's all rumors at this point," he said, "but we're looking at any number of ways to improve our club. Our pro scouts are out checking out players. We want to be in position where we have as much information as possible. We're looking at the top players ... if they're available."
The Reds did not make a trade at the deadline last year. The year before, they added Scott Rolen from Toronto.
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