Wednesday, December 06, 2000

Deadline near on Wohlers, Santiago

By Chris Haft
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        General manager Jim Bowden wouldn't comment Tuesday on the status of right-hander Mark Wohlers and catcher Benito Santiago, free agents who spent this year with the Reds.

        Their chances of returning to the club appear unlikely.

        The Reds must offer salary arbitration to either Wohlers or Santiago by Thursday. Otherwise, they cannot re-sign with the club before May 1, essentially severing their ties to the organization.

        With nine players already eligible for salary arbitration, the Reds would be reluctant to risk adding to that number. Neither Wohlers nor Santiago would be obligated to accept arbitration if it were offered, but they'd probably accept it, because it's a mechanism for automatic raises.

        Wohlers had expressed interest in returning to Cincinnati; the Reds have made no effort to re-sign Santiago, despite their need for a backup catcher.


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