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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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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Dusty on Speier; options date

Chris Speier's resume as an infield coach was the overriding factor in Dusty Baker hiring him.

"That was a lot of it," Baker said. "I trust him. He was my third base coach. He's a very knowledgeable baseball man. But a lot of it was I needed an infield guy. Most of the plays are on the infield."

The Reds officially named Speier bench/infielder coach and Juan Lopez was named bullpen coach.

Speier and Baker have known each other since they broke into the National League in early 1970s. Baker hired Speier to be part of his staff with the Chicago Cubs.

"I thought he was an excellent infield guy," Baker said. "He's the second best infield instructor I've seen. We were both tutored under Bob Lillis, who I always felt was the best."

Baker saw a marked improvement of Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez and Ryan Theriot under Speier.

Speier also will serve as the bench coach, a position Baker relies quite a bit.

"I rely on him to see things I may overlook during the game: Is this guy guarding the line? Is this guy out of position? I'll run things by him. I'm going to do what I think is right, but the bench coach is a sounding board. What I like about Chris is he's not going to be a yes man. I don't really like yes men around me too much. I have trouble agreeing with myself sometimes. I want some who's going to give me an honest answer. A guys opinion here and there can help."

Also: The due date on the players with options -- Adam Dunn, Scott Hatteberg, Eddie Guardado, Javier Valentin -- is Nov. 4.

Baker was FedExed a package on Reds personnel. He's studying it.

"Most of that is Wayne's call," he said.

Baker guesses he's spoken to 40 players since getting the job, including Mark Prior and Kerry Wood. Baker says he wasn't recruiting. He was asked about Prior's house (he lives in Southern California). The thing with Wood was email congratulations exchange.


at 4:27 PM Blogger Robert said...

The Reds need to sign Schilling at 13 mill for one year, he would be a solid #3....and he could help with the young arms of bailey and co.

at 4:54 PM Blogger Mr. Redlegs said...

Yes, the Reds "need" to do a lot of things; too bad the agent and his player don't usually agree with that "need to do."

And, uh, Schilling isn't a No. 3 starter behind . . . Arroyo.

at 5:21 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. He would be a great add.

at 6:22 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, the Reds should definitely sign an ailing 41 year-old pitcher who has averaged 22 starts a year over the last three years. That would be awesome. I can't imagine what could go possibly go wrong. While Schilling would probably like to finish his career pitching for a winning club, maybe a three year deal would appeal to his republican sensibilities.

at 7:32 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

was it fedexed through their ground or express service?

at 8:51 PM Blogger Grizzlyfox said...

Well the Schill man is asking for a one year deal, and has said he'd sign with Tampa Bay, or any situation in which he'd have a chance to mentor some young guys. Why wouldn't Castellini offer him a one year 11 mil or so deal? That's Milton's money right there...plus Curt's about as reliable as you can get in this market, and as for teaching young pitchers, throw Bailey and Cueto into the rotation, that's two good young arms right there, plus he could have some fun working with Aaron. I don't believe he'd actually sign with us, but why not pursue him? Won't hurt anything.

at 9:16 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to agree. People complain about Griffey and Dunn having ego problems, but they're still in AA ball compared to Schilling

at 9:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't understand why Shearn was taken off roster. He could have been a useful long reliever next season. Still might make it out of spring training

at 11:53 AM Anonymous MONEY MIKE said...

This should put an end to the Schilling debate.

Schilling compiled a list of 13 teams he would consider playing for and the Reds are not one of them, but the cards, cubs, and brewers are.

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