CINCINNATI -- Who would turn down $140 million from the New York Yankees? If you believe a report from Yahoo sports, Reds outfielder Shin-Shoo Choo did.
According to an article by Jeff Passan, three sources told him the Yankees presented Choo with a seven-year, $140 million contract after All-Star second baseman Robinson Cano took a big-money deal to bolt to Seattle.
Choo, a versatile outfielder who put up solid numbers in his first year with the Reds, rejected the deal and his agent Scott Boras asked for more money. He said he wanted "(Jacoby) Ellsbury money," alluding to the seven-year, $153 million deal the former Red Sox spark plug signed with the pinstriped boys in the Bronx earlier this off-season.
Choo is one of the top remaining names on the free-agent market after a season that saw him finish second in NL on-base percentage (.423) and hit 21 home runs.
But when he turned down the initial offer, the Yankees decided to pull the offer and signed former St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Carlos Beltran to a three-year, $45 million deal.
So, where will Choo end up?
Earlier this season Reds GM Walt Jocketty seemed optimistic they'd be able to re-sign Choo, who he acquired in three-way trade with Cleveland and Arizona last offseason. But after the South Korean rejected the club's $14.1 million qualifying contract offer in November that no longer seemed likely.
Teams like the Red Sox, the Tigers and Rangers are obvious contenders, as are the Astros, who have money to spend after enduring a season with a roster comprised of players who collectively made less than Choo will next year and beyond.
The 'Stros have their eye on rising prospect George Springer and are concerned about giving up a No. 1 pick, according to the Yahoo report.
If the Reds don't re-sign Choo, they'll receive a compensation pick in the June 2014 first-year player draft.