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From news of the day to news of the weird, John Fay provides a glimpse of what it’s like to cover the Cincinnati Reds

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, September 12, 2007

Dunn, Castellini meet

Adam Dunn and Reds CEO Bob Castellini had lunch this afternoon at Castellini's downtown office. No, Dunn’s option for next year was not discussed. And there was no talk of an extension.

“It was nothing,” Dunn said. “It was lunch. I've been wanting to talk to him. Really, it was a harmless lunch. We didn't talk about anything (concerning me). That’s kind of the way we wanted it. We talked about the team.”

Dunn left impressed with Castellini.

“He’s outstanding,” Dunn said. “He’s awesome. He’s so approachable. He’s just fun to talk to.”


For the record, they had Montgomery Inn.

Whether the Reds pick up Dunn's $13.5 million option is one of the major issues of the offseason. Dunn's made a case for himself. He's hitting .266 and he's tied for second in the NL with 38 home runs and fifth in RBI with 101.


25 Comments:

at 4:54 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Homers aren't everything, John. Look at where homers have us in the central. .266? Average at best, not a premier number at all. 101 RBI? Impressive for most, but someone of Dunner's potential should drive in lots, lots more. He's not too clutch, unless you'd like a homer, but not too many come clutch.

It was just lunch? Bull. Bob told Dunn to keep quiet is what's going on. They're going to pick up his option and I'll be stuck suffering through him another year.

I hope Bob didn't pick up the check; Adam probably cleaned out the resturaunt's fridge.

Why is he talking to Dunn about the team? Why choose him? Very interesting.

 
at 5:51 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

unbelievable how some people still treat Dunn. .266 may be average at best, but for him, and the type of hitter he is, that is great. look where he's been the last few years. around the .240's. that is a huge upgrade. he is driving in runs in more ways than just the homerun. i had my doubts on him, but there is no way you cannot pick up his option.

 
at 6:02 PM Blogger kingseyeland said...

Dunn is a bargain at $13.5 million. You're not gonna replace those numbers for the same money. This isn't a Casey-Hatteberg situation where they cut the payroll but maintained the offense at a position. You can't just give that position to Jay Bruce and expect the same output. He'd be tarred and feathered by the end of May.

Now, show me a high-average power hitter and I'll show you a player this team can't afford.

 
at 6:12 PM Blogger Phill said...

Homers aren't everything but look at the number of runs he makes. A Dunn-less team is looking like the whole year it'd be a lot of low scoring games which the already shakey pitching staff probably wouldn't be able to keep the team in the game.

He gets on base and he is much more of an impact player than people around here seem to realize.

Then again people are more worried wether or not he sprints to his position in the field than what he actually gives to the team.

 
at 6:39 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Projected numbers for next year w/o Dumm:

Hamilton - 30 homers, 100 rbi
Griffey - 30 homers, 100 rbi
Phillips - 35 homers, 100 rbi
Bruce - 20 homers, 80 rbi
EE - 15 homers, 85 rbi
Votto - 15 homers, 80 rbi

I don't see a drop off in offense at all. In fact, I see an upgrade in speed, defense, and batting average.

 
at 6:47 PM Blogger Grizzlyfox said...

Did the anonymous man at 5:39 get a hold of some illicit drugs earlier in the day? Or did he ask Miss Cleo, and this was her answer? Or has baseball prospectus thrown out their uneducated numbers earlier than usual?

 
at 6:57 PM Anonymous MONEY MIKE said...

Wow...those numbers look like something straight out of the bronx
"Hamilton - 30 homers, 100 rbi
Griffey - 30 homers, 100 rbi
Phillips - 35 homers, 100 rbi
Bruce - 20 homers, 80 rbi
EE - 15 homers, 85 rbi
Votto - 15 homers, 80 rbi"

People are great at looking at the negative in what Dunn does simply because the man strikes out more than one typically would, or he fouls up a catch in LF, but they never really look at his upside and if they do its just a brief "yeah he hits homers and drives in runs but what about those K's and errors" You know what we dont have Dunn here to hit .317 and strike out 54 times, what he have him here is to drive in runs and hit home runs, and I think he has that covered. If you want to be critical of people, and god strike me down for doing this, but Jr. has only hit 100+ rbi's in his first season in Cincy and batted .300+ in only one of those. Makes you think just a bit about what Dunn really means to us.

 
at 7:05 PM Anonymous Gary214 said...

I don't get it. The guy has improved his average, RBI total, and (I think I am right here) his fielding %...I haven't seen the numbers but I think he has even cut down on strikeouts. He plays every day, which (and trust me on this) Hamilton will not do...the dude has done some damage to his body and will NOT have injury-free seasons. He has been more aggressive...and no way can we replace him on THIS team at THIS time. I don't get.... no, I don't BUY, all the complaints! I swear some of these fans are starting to sound like Philly fans!

 
at 7:46 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd still like to know what the master plan is for the Reds regarding how they manage four left handed hitting outfielders (Dunn, Hamilton, Griffey, and Bruce) in 2008. It would seem likely that they'll pick up Dunn's option. That probably means that Bruce starts out at AAA. But when Bruce is hitting over .300 and has a high slugging and obs in June or July what do you do? You can't keep a talent like Bruce at AAA all next year if he performs there like he did this season. He is simply too talented. Hamilton is too young and has too high a ceiling to think about trading. So what will the Reds do?

It might be a nice problem to have to have too much talent but when they are lack so badly in the starting pitching department all is not rosey.

--Redbeard

 
at 7:51 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe that the average sports fans listens entirely too much to sports talk radio and has become completely unable to think for themselves. It's the same tired and boring arguement that the Reds would probably be better off without Dunn and use his money to get some of the very weak and uneffective free agent picthing that's on the "market" this winter.

Its not that the homers have us in the position we are in the central,my guess would be it's the picthing.

I love the conspiracy theories people are throwing out about the "covert operation" lunch. If you were'nt there how can you be so sure of what was said?

And the way people are overly concern about Dunns' weight is amazing. Is he Cecil Fielder kind of fat? Is he carrying the girth as one Carlos Lee?

And counting on Votto and Bruce to pick up Dunns' numbers in their first full year is a lil' bit risky.....and did you notice Mr. Bruce also strikes out alot?

The only thing you are suffering is a complete lack of understanding in basic baseball. Good pitching and defense will be the only way the Reds will compete. And yes Dunn can play a servicable LF!

 
at 8:33 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

---The only thing you are suffering is a complete lack of understanding in basic baseball.---

LOL, alright ANON 6:51, let's talk. How convenient just because I don't agree with you, I'm an average sports fan who knows nothing, and I lack an understanding of basic baseball. Look here Mr. Mouth, you don't know me, so don't judge me!

I hate sports talk radio, Tracy Jones lacks basic baseball knowledge.

---Reds would probably be better off without Dunn and use his money to get some of the very weak and uneffective free agent picthing that's on the "market" this winter.---

The market is poor this year. That's why you take his money, save it this offseason, let mostly in-house candidates audition, and spend it next offseason when better stuff will be available.

---And counting on Votto and Bruce to pick up Dunns' numbers in their first full year is a lil' bit risky.....and did you notice Mr. Bruce also strikes out alot?---

It may be risky, but you never know till you try! Yes, I did see Bruce's strikeouts. But, he and everyone else in the organization said it was because he had to make three transitions this year- A, AA, AAA. That has to be tough on a 20-year old. Give him a break, and see how it goes down next year.

---Good pitching and defense will be the only way the Reds will compete.---

That's correct. The Reds are doing well on defense, but they have no pitching. How does keeping Dunn solve that? Save his money for winter '08 to help that.

---And yes Dunn can play a servicable LF! ---

Funny, the Dunn I see lets baseballs slide away from him, go into corners, bounce out of his glove - good Lord, he's a defensive liability!! The only one I see on the team, too.

Funny, people are idiots if they don't think like everyone else. I happen to have my own opinion, and I'll stick with it. Believe me, Dunn isn't going to help this club any. He, at long last, has achieved overratedness in Cincy.

 
at 8:42 PM Anonymous Gary214 said...

And Hamilton gets hurt...hate to say I told you so...but I did!! Several times in previous posts...and ealier in this one.The guy is injury prone...those that want to get rid of Dunn and think Hamilton can cover his production...ain't gonna happen!

 
at 10:18 PM Blogger Dan H said...

You just can't let all that production go for nothing. He has improved a fair amount over last year, the average is acceptable,defense has improved some, strikeouts are down especially the last month or so. Until jay Bruce proves himself in the majors it is just too much to give up at this time.

 
at 10:23 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 7:33!

I never called anyone an idiot in my soap box preachin' post. I simply said it keeps people from thinking for themselves...you took it to the idiot level.

My point is(i yes i realize you have your own opinion no matter how wrong you might be) that most of what you read in post here or on the radio is the herd mentality that keeps people from looking at both sides of the arguement. You did me a favor by proving this point.

You want to look at free agents pitching signings over the past few years and see how many have not worked out? Check out Tracy Ringolsby latest column in Baseball America. Maybe we will score a Carl Pavano type pitcher.(yes thats sarcasim).

Still I am waiting for someone to point out how many games Dunns' defense has lost us this year and how that would affect our standings? He's certainly not gold glover but he's no Jose Canseco.

If traversing three levels of minor league ball is tough, don't you think hitting major league pitching the first year will be easier? Isn't the picthing a whole lot better up here? Don't get me wrong I hope Bruce will be in the majors soon. But lets not make him all world just yet,like everybody did with Bailey.

And Dunn is overrated in everybodys mind because he's not what they think he should be. I pretty sure he's a pure power hitter and yes(this is gonna kill you) a servicable LF.

Whats with the Tracy Jones shot?

And again just because you differ in opinion with me doesn't me i think idiot should be applied to your resume. And eventually Buck Coates will make our disagreement a mute point.

And yes I would say people have a lack of basic baseball sense. It's proven on a daily basis. And again it doesn't make them idiots because i said that. So chill out!

 
at 11:48 PM Anonymous ADMS said...

...and when Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds...(no this isn't a steroid posting)...and A-Rod were/are in their prime despite any limitations they have on or off the field, was the screaming this loud to get rid of them? I really doubt it. Oakland, St Louis, San Francisco and the Yankees had/have to love the numbers because it is the longball that makes SportsCenter highlights and gets them and the team some camera time.
I also wonder if those in sports radio and other loud critics realize one thing - even though Dunn makes more money in one year than most of us will see in our lives, last I checked, he's still a human being. We also know that he (and his family) doesn't have the thick skin that is needed in baseball. I've wondered how he would handle places like NYC and Philly! It would be terrible for us to lose him in his prime because he was just fed up with the media and city. We'd have to live with that one and what team (besides us) wouldn't want to have a potential .270+ hitter with 40+ HR and 110+ RBI?
I don't want to be in the management's shoes right now with having to make brutal decisions with what young talent we might have to give up to get some pitching. I think they need to keep the current top 4 (Dunn, Junior, Hamilton) and maybe a Freel or Hopper and possibly move someone by mid-season.
As a fan, who doesn't like seeing a grand slam that dents signs or could end up in the river?

 
at 12:48 AM Blogger freelancehack said...

John,

While I'm still not fully convinced the Reds should pick up the option, I am starting to warm up to the notion.

But let me ask this -- Doesn't picking up the option year only make sense if you intend to sign Dunn to a long-term deal? Otherwise, the Reds are only delaying Dunn's departure by one year and costing themselves $13 million in doing so.

And if you sign Dunn long-term (say through 2013), what does that mean for Votto, Bruce and Hamilton? What does it mean for the Brandon Phillips' negotiations? Does Hatteburg come back to serve as the pinch hitter? And what about Cantu?

 
at 7:36 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Josh Hamilton has tremendous talent but appears to be the Eric Davis of the 21st century. Tremendous talent but injury prone. I would be surprised to see Hamilton play a full season without injury. Don't project his numbers over a full season, he will not play a full season.

 
at 8:19 AM Blogger Adam said...

At the trade deadline I was hoping that they would trade him, but I am glad that the didn't. He has produced great for them in the 2nd half and overall for the year. I think that people are overlooking what he brings in the lineup and that is fear. Would you really want to face Dunn in game winning situation. He had provided protection in the lineup for Phillips which has allowed him to have a monster year since pitchers don't want to skip him in the order. Dunn needs to stay. Bruce will be ready to come up and work his way into the lineup in a year or two and take over for Griffey when his contract is up.

 
at 8:56 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think our best solution will be to trade Griffey for some pitching. Maybe a bonafide 2 or 3. If we need to package him with Hatte or a good prospect to get the pitching, so be it. i Love griff, but i think this year is the last great year he may have. This year is proably his ceiling and it will be fading fast from here on out. In addition, His value is about as high as it can get by approaching 600 homers and having a full season. I beleive Bruce might be able to provide the same numbers as griffey as a rookie next year. Dunn needs to stay. We know exactly what we have with Dunn. great OPS. power and stays healthy year in and year out. why gamble with a sure thing. Mr Consistent. So give him a long consitent contract.

 
at 10:04 AM Anonymous Red Faced said...

Yes, Dunn gets his option picked up and yes Griffey is back next year as well.

Dunn has put together a very solid year (I have been asking for the Reds to trade him all Year by the way) but he's really turned it on (for Dunn) the last couple of months. I have always liked Dunn but the last 2 years and the first half of this year I was disappointed by what I saw as a lack of production with runners on base. Dunn has done an excellent job and I feel he has put together a very solid year. So yes his option gets picked up for next year.

Griffey will still be chasing 600 by the start of next season so he'll stay and help pack the house for a while. Hopefully the team gets off to a good start and the fans keep coming in after 600.

Now what may likely happen is that either one gets traded before the trade deadline next year and Bruce gets a call up then.

Or what no-one wants to say or hasn't thought about is that the Reds actually trade some of their young talent for some quality pitching. The team will likely get better value for youth and we might just have to come to terms with the fact that we have to give a lot in order to get a lot.

I hope that Keppinger and Hamilton both stay. I'd like to see Votto and Bruce playing next year as well but I wouldn't be surprised if we look to move one of them in order to get us a top-notch starter. It just makes sense guys. Pitching is the key to having a successful season, a key to being a playoff contender. We obviously need some starting pitching help as well as a closer. We have value in our farm system and I believe we are going to have to part ways with some of it in order to get the pitching we need.

What do you think John? Who has more value Bruce or Votto?

 
at 12:20 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Dear Red Faced,
Griffey packed the house again last nite, 14,000!

 
at 1:21 PM Blogger Daedalus said...

ryan howard and adam dunn have nearly identical stats this year, yet i don't hear phillies phans screaming to get rid of him.

i'd like to see one of the cincy writers publish a stat comparison of the two to show the cincy masses what kind of player dunn compares to. howard even has MORE strikeouts than dunn!

used to be cincinnati was a knowledgable baseball town. i guess the ohio brain drain has affected the Reds fan sector, too.

 
at 1:30 PM Blogger John Fay said...

The strikeout stat was in today's paper. The updated version: Howard 179 strikeouts, Dunn 156.

Howard .262, 38 HRs, 115 RBI, 79 runs, .377 OB%, .557 slugging.

Dunn .266, 38 HRs, 101 RB1, 97 runs, .384 OB%, .555 slugging.

 
at 2:05 PM Anonymous Red Faced said...

Dear Cheviot Sports Authority

I don't think there was much chance Griffey was going to hit number 600 last night, and who knows maybe there would have only been 8000 in the stands if he weren't here.

But a new season brings renewed interest and with that Griffey will be on the verge of 600 so yes, the stadium will be packed somewhat more as a result. I'm not trying to say that I necessarily agree with keeping Griffey for this reason but I do think it is part of the equation that the GM is using. A flawed equation I know.

Personally I have not attended a game this year since the organization failed to fire Narrow when we were drastically underperforming and fell to 10 games under. I watch the games on TV but the distance I have to travel for a game isn't worth it in my opinion when the team was playing so poorly and the GM let it fall apart as badly as it did.

But do tell me this Cheviot Sports Authority, what do you think about trading one of our high end prospects for high-end pitching? I think that's the only way we gain a #2 starter of quality without waiting a few years for Cuento or Bailey to develop further.

 
at 6:15 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Red Faced, absolutely, trade one or more of the young players if necessary to get quality pitching. I don't think that I would trade Jay Bruce though, unless it was for a proven #1 and not a washed up has been. However, I am scared that Krivsky would give away the store and not get enough in return.

Griffey may pack the house when he gets to 598 or 599 but for how many games will that
be 3 or 4, maybe none? What if he gets the last few on a road trip? I don't see where its a big deal anyway, of course the Reds will promote it as such(and they should) but what does 600 mean anymore? He hit most of his when people like Brady Anderson(who) were hitting 50 a year. Its a lot of homers but homers are very cheap these days.

I too, will not pay the ridiculous prices to watch the crap that the Reds put on the field these days and I especially despise my intelligence being insulted every time that Wayne Krivsky opens his mouth.

 
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