The MLB winter meetings commenced Sunday in Nashville, and there is plenty of buzz that could shift the competitive landscape in the industry’s largest annual congregation of executives and media.

The top free agentsstarting pitchers Zack Greinke and David Pricewere snatched off the market last week for deals exceeding $200 million. But there are still plenty of high-profile chips that could be in play.

The trade market has been relatively quiet this offseason, but there are a few rumors floating that indicate it could heat up during the four-day event.

Here is a look at the latest buzz as the always-exciting winter meetings get underway.


Reds expected to trade Aroldis Chapman

Cincinnati Reds general manager Dick Williams indicated he expects to strike a deal to ship triple-digits closer Aroldis Chapman before the winter meetings conclude Wednesday, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

Among the possible suitors include the Houston Astros, Washington Nationals and the increasingly aggressive Arizona Diamondbacks, per Heyman.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported the Los Angeles Dodgers were in talks with the Reds for Chapman on Sunday.

Jerry Crasnick of reported an interesting note on why Houston may be in play as well:

Chapman, a lights-out closer whose fastball consistently tops 100 mph, will become an unrestricted free agent in 2017 and will likely command top dollar that Cincinnati simply won’t be able to afford.

The Reds finished 64-98 last yearsecond-worst in the majorsand gave Chapman only 36 save opportunities, for which he successfully earned 33.

The Reds were in a similar scenario at this time last year with starting pitcher Johnny Cueto, and they played their cards swimmingly, dealing the right-hander at the trade deadline that yielded prospects from the Kansas City Royals rather than winding up empty-handed when he walked.

Cueto remains on the open market and turned down a six-year, $120 million offer from the Diamondbacks last month, according to Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes, which is well above the Reds’ budget.

The Astros make the most sense in a trade for Chapman. After four abysmal seasons, Houston built its farm system and made the playoffs in 2015, and it’s here to stay for the near future.

The Astros have the prospects the Reds would want and need a closer to take an extra step, as was shown in their American League Division Series defeat to the Royals.


Nationals to shop Drew Storen at meetings

The Nationals have two closers in their clubhouse, but they could rid themselves of at least one by the end of the week.

Three industry sources told Bill Ladson of that Washington is seeking to trade reliever Drew Storen, who lost his job as closer when the team acquired Jonathan Papelbon at the trade deadline last season.

The addition prompted Storen and his agent to meet with GM Mike Rizzo to discuss his role and future.’s Jayson Stark reported last month the Nationals wouldn’t mind getting rid of both Papelbon and Storen and adding someone else:

It was the third time Storen lost his job as closer, but each time has been under unique circumstances. Tyler Clippard replaced him in 2011 after Storen suffered an elbow injury, and Rafael Soriano replaced him prior to the 2014 season.

At the time of the Papelbon trade, Storen had a 1.73 ERA with 29 saves and an opposing slash line of .212/.271/.250—figures most teams would take any day.

Should the Astros or Dodgers lose out on the Chapman sweepstakes, Storen wouldn’t be a bad substitute.


Braves could deal Shelby Miller for right price

For all the fan flak the Atlanta Braves caught for trading longtime staples Andrelton Simmons, Justin Upton, Craig Kimbrel and others, they looked quite smart for last year’s deal of Jason Heyward for starting pitcher Shelby Miller.

Heyward is now a free agent who’s expected to haul in a 10-year, $200 million contract, per Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors, while Miller is under club control through 2019. But now the Braves are apparently engaged in talks to deal Miller after just one season.

Heyman reported last week that 20 teams were in the mix, and Buster Olney of ESPN The Magazine wrote Saturday the Diamondbacks are pushing to add Miller as a No. 2 to their minted addition, Greinke:

Mark Bowman of indicated that despite the vigorous interest, the Braves are not actively seeking trades for the 25-year-old righty.

“Still, while the Braves are certainly willing to gauge what they might get for Miller, they do not appear to be actively shopping him,” Bowman wrote. “In fact, one National League club said the talks did not go anywhere after it expressed interest in Miller.”

It’s an incredibly robust market for a pitcher who went 6-17 last year, but that figure is a prime example why the win-loss category isn’t the most indicative statistic to determine a starter’s success.

Miller eclipsed 200 innings for the first time and posted a career-low 3.02 ERA in 33 starts. Arguably no pitcher was worth more to his team, and the Braves offense could rarely return the favor.

Miller went 24 starts over a span of more than four months without a wina testament to the incredibly limited run support.

He’s one of the game’s great up-and-coming pitchers and, with the right team, could develop into an ace.

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