Originally written on The Outside Corner  |  Last updated 11/20/14
Redsbrewers_4f87

The Cincinnati Reds are reportedly extremely close to signing first baseman Joey Votto to an extension that could cost the team upwards of $200 million, reports Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors. 

I can only assume the deal would be similarly structed to the nine year, $214 million contract signed by Prince Fielder this offseason as opposed to Albert Pujols's ten year, $240 million deal that was also signed this offseason. Votto is currently under contract until the 2013 season for a total of $26.5 million. 

Votto, the 2010 NL MVP, has been one of the league's best players in recent years. Over his last four seasons, Votto has totaled 22.9 fWAR, the sixth highest mark in baseball over that time period. Votto's .408 wOBA over the last four seasons ranks third behind Pujols and Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers, now at third base.

One possible downside of giving Votto this extension is the same that holds true for any long-term extension being handed out: he's currently in his prime, and the deal will take him through his decline years. Votto will spend this season as a 28 year old, and his current contract takes him through his age 29 season. If the Reds tack nine years onto the end of that deal, they'll be paying him until he's 38, and I doubt he'll be producing six win seasons at that age. But the gamble is worth taking, especially in the NL Central where a pair of star first basemen have left their teams in recent months.

The Reds haven't had a face of their franchise like Votto since the largely failed Ken Griffey Jr experiment. Injuries crippled Griffey once he joined the Reds, and he was a shell of the player he once was. The last dominant franchise player the Reds had was 2012 Hall of Fame inductee Barry Larkin, who was a very different player from Votto. An extension for him would have more than just on-field dividends, but the length and total money of the deal still scares me.

[follow]

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Browns feel Josh Gordon 'has to go'

Jets contacted Rex Ryan's agent about replacements for him

Justin Gilbert inactive after being late to team meeting

Report: Browns had to search for Manziel after he threw party

Report: Jim Harbaugh to Michigan is done deal

Amari Cooper not a fan of New Orleans, thinks it smells

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

WATCH: Jennifer Lawrence does Louisville chant at game

WATCH: Did Bret Bielema do ‘Horns Down’ gesture?

Devils unveil unique coaching by committee situation

Report: 49ers expect Jim Harbaugh to take Michigan job

Report: Johnny Manziel fined for being late to treatment

Duke Johnson's mother says son will enter NFL Draft

WATCH: Lamar Miller has longest TD run in Dolphins history

WATCH: Pats fans serenade Pete Frates with 'Happy Birthday'

Harbaugh rumors affecting Michigan basketball ticket prices?

WATCH: Dez Bryant burns Redskins defender for TD

Detroit bar offering free food, booze if Lions beat Packers

Jameis Winston: I would throw in Richard Sherman's direction

WATCH: Nebraska safety pukes on field, keeps playing

WATCH: Nyquist holds puck for 28 seconds, scores OT winner

WATCH: Kevin Garnett blows in David West's ear

WATCH: Frank Beamer busts a move after bowl win

Bears could clean house after season

Nebraska chancellor booed by Huskers players?

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Pats fans serenade Pete Frates

Browns to part ways with Josh Gordon?

Manziel was late after throwing party?

Amari Cooper not a fan of New Orleans

Harbaugh to Mich. is done deal

WATCH: Jennifer Lawrence supports Louisville with chant

Did Bielema do ‘Horns Down’?

WATCH: Beamer busts a move

Bears could clean house after season

Nebraska chancellor booed by players?

Johnny Manziel fined by Browns

Castro questioned after shooting

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.