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John Fay
John Fay has been the Reds beat writer for the Enquirer since 2001. Prior to that, he served in a variety of roles for the Enquirer: backup Reds writer, UC beat writer, backup Bengals writer and as a general assignment reporter. He is a Cincinnati native and a graduate of Elder High School and the University of Dayton.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Draft day

Are you going to watch the draft tomorrow on ESPN2?

I know people love the NFL Draft (I'm not one of them), but the baseball draft is really inside stuff.

I talked the Reds scouting director today. They like the high school third baseman from Houston, Kevin Ahrens. But, when you pick 15th, someone they like better could fall to them. Chris Buckley, the Reds' scouting guy, doesn't have a strong high school vs. college leaning, although the three top picks last year were all college payers.

Here's a draft story from the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel that says a lot about why where the Reds are where they are:

By Mike Berardino
Staff writer
He was going to be a Red.

Derek Jeter was sure of that.

That's what the scouts were telling him. That's what he kept hearing onthe eve of the 1992 baseball draft.

"I was supposed to go to Cincinnati," Jeter says, 13 seasons into a Hall of Fame career.

Then along came draft day, and with the fifth overall pick the Redsinexplicably switched gears. They took Fort Lauderdale's Chad Mottola, a power-hitting outfielder from St. Thomas Aquinas High and the University of Central Florida.

Picking one spot later, the rebuilding Yankees quickly snatched upJeter, the spindly high school shortstop from Kalamazoo, Mich., and therest is history. "Chad probably did me a favor," Jeter says. "I would have been stuckbehind Barry Larkin for a long time. I thank Chad."

While Jeter has won four World Series rings with the Yankees, Mottolahas bounced around to eight different organizations, including a briefstint with the Marlins in 2001.

Still playing at age 35, Mottola is primarily a designated hitter with Triple-A Syracuse in the Blue Jays' system. His career major league totals: 59 games, 25 hits, four homers and a. 200 batting average.


at 4:37 PM Anonymous Josh said...


at 4:37 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Larkin was here so that was a smart move by the Reds. Leatherpants would have just traded Jeter away for nothing anyway.

What year was Pokey drafted?

at 5:04 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeter's wrong in 2 ways. First, he should thank the Reds for not being smart enough to draft him, not Chad. Second, if the Reds had drafted him, he wouldn't have been stuck behind Larkin. They would have moved him to 2B, 3B or OF. Ask Pokey Reese. How about Larkin and Jeter as a double play combo?

It would have been interesting to see if the Reds would have resigned Barry after the 2000 season, or let him leave and then move Jeter to SS. But Jeter would never have been stuck behind Barry Larkin or any other Red at the time.

Here's an interesting question: what pitchers could Bowden have selected instead of Chad Mottola?

Am I remembering correctly that Ray Knight once declared Mottola to be a starter...and then benched him after 3 games?

at 5:40 PM Blogger John Fay said...

Pokey had been drafted the year before. As I remember it, Marge Scott wouldn't come up with what Jeter was asking for.

at 8:05 PM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

You can tell the season is over when the topic is the big 1992 draft mistake AND when a .250 mediocre retread hitter is the new leadoff guy for the Reds, at least tonight, while they figure out new ways to lose.

So now Hopper is tired? Or feeling a little under the weather?


at 8:13 PM Blogger John Fay said...

If Hopper's in, Griffey, Dunn or Hamilton is out against a right-hander. Gotta think a lot of managers are going to sit Hopper in that situation.

at 8:36 PM Anonymous Mills said...

The 1997 draft was a disaster as well. The Reds picked No. 14 and took Brandon Larson. The Astros picked No. 16 and took Lance Berkman. It goes to show the lack of money this franchise had put into scouting prospects until recently. How good could the franchise be if they would've drafted better in the 90's? A lot...

at 8:46 PM Blogger John Fay said...

Reds take on Berkman was he didn't have a position. When a guy hits like that, you find him a position.

The killer years:
1999 -- Howington
2000 -- Espinosa
2001 -- Sowers
2002 -- Gruler
2003 -- Wagner

Wagner was olny one that gave the Reds anythnig in the big leagues. It's been better since (provided the picks like up to their current ratings):

2004 -- Bailey
2005 -- Bruce
2006 -- Stubbs
2005 --Bruce

at 10:03 PM Blogger kingseyeland said...

Berkman didn't have a position, but the Astros found a way to put him in all three outfield spots and 1B.

And he has 39 career homers against the Reds, more than any other team by a dozen.

Yeah that worked out well for the Reds.

at 10:19 PM Blogger Aunt Flossy said...

Why aren't we hearing more about Ryan Freel's recovery?

at 10:21 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is like a re-run every night. Arroyo was done after the sixth inning. Coffey should run right past the mound and back to Louisville (maybe Chattanooga). Stanton should retire and stare at his WS rings.

If I were a pitcher in Louisville and haven't received a chance I would ask for my release.

Note: Did you see Larussa pinch hit a right hander vs a right hander? Narron follows the old manual (manwell) a little to close.

at 10:28 PM Blogger John Fay said...

There's not much to update on Freel. I've got an item in my notebook for tomorrow. Still no baseball activity. He'll be re-evaluated Friday.

at 12:09 AM Anonymous Justin Fernandez said...

Okay but Hatte-B is not a leadoff hitter on any planet, except planet LOSER.

And Dunn at 1B and Hopper, Hamilton, and Griffey in the OF is a far far better lineup, day in and day out, although the Big HB had a good night tonight...as .250 hitters sometimes due.

Heck, the Reds will win another game sometime within the next 10 losses, so I can't be too hard on Narron.

McBeth looked superb. Finally, one pitcher worth keeping. Livingston, had he started instead of Arroyo (any clown knew Arroyo needed a Dunn-Hamilton tummy "time out" away from the rotation) wouldn't have been toast 2/3s of the way through the game.

And what's up with blonde hair attached to hat night? Isn't that a SCALP? And we're playing the American Indians! Well Wahoo (Chief) where are all the politically correct wackos on this one? Surely someone has to be offended (I'm offended but only at Arroyo's lack of talent)! Funny but I don't think a Griffey FRO hat night is on tap, and I wonder why!

Arroyo stinks. Livingston deserves his spot in the rotation.

at 10:09 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it possible to draft a glimmer of hope or a chance in hell?????

at 1:59 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to see George Foster Sideburns Nostalgia Night. Hugh Jackman can throw out the first pitch.


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