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Reds Insider
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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Tuesday, April 15, 2008

On the Piazza rumor

I think there's something to the Mike Piazza rumor. That is not to say it's going to happen. I've got a call out to his agent but haven't heard back.

A person I talked to said the Reds are looking at lot of possibilities to get some more right-handed pop. Piazza could provide that. But it sounded like the Reds hadn't gotten very far in talks.

I asked Dusty Baker if he would like more right-handed power in his bench.

"Good question, John,” Baker said. "Pittsburgh was pretty evident of that. We've talked about it many times."

Jorge Cantu's name has come up a lot on the blog recently. Our buddy CSA asked what my opinion was on why they let him go. They said the time it was to clear a spot of the 40-man to make Rule 5 pick. That turned out to be a bad reason because Sergio Valenzuela was sent back to Atlanta before he ever pitched in a game.

But that's only part of the reason. Cantu was arbitration-eligible. That means the Reds would have had to pay him at least $1 million. They didn't think he was worth it evidently.


81 Comments:

at 7:45 PM Blogger Aaron said...

Well let us remember that they signed Craig Wilson and he would have provided good right handed power and could have platooned at 1B a little bit. So its not like they didn't replace Cantu, and they have a million infielders already.

If I am GM I trade Griffey as soon as he hits his 600th or maybe even sooner if there are takers. Let's face it his power is not what it used to be and he is a left handed bat that doesn't belong in the the #3 spot in any batting order at this juncture of his career. I am sure he will hit a home run today since I said that, but I am serious look around the league at #3 hitters and Griff is mediocre.

 
at 7:49 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

well put Aaron

 
at 8:06 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

I don't think Griff needs to be in the #3 hole, but he needs to be in this lineup because he still drives in runs. He needs to be put into a position to do that. Bat him in Dunn's #5 position and move Dunn to #4 or to #6.

I wouldn't trade Griffey, because you're not going to get a Right fielder to replace his run production. You're going to trade him and what...put Norris Hopper in right? Put Ryan Freel in right? Or maybe you could move Corey Patterson over to right and put Ryan Freel in center?

Your best option is to bring Bruce up, and then again that is still not a very good option. Bruce may eventually put up those numbers, but replacing Griffey is very big shoes to fill. It will take awhile.

Bring up Andy Phillips and Jolbert Cabrera.

 
at 8:08 PM Blogger JF said...

Bring up young players who CARE

 
at 8:09 PM Blogger JF said...

Piazza? Heck, why not bring back Yogi Berra? And the Afflack duck too?

Give the Rangers Dunn for Saltalamacchia.

 
at 8:16 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

Give the Rangers Dunn for Saltalamacchia.

I realize we are desperate for catching, but Saltamacchia caught very few games for Texas last year (he played more first base) and is in Triple A this year. Their catcher is Gerald Laird, if that says anything.

I'm not sure that would help us much, to be honest.

 
at 8:19 PM Blogger JF said...

On the bright side of things, if the Cubs endure another year of M.A.S.H. SORIANO, that's practically a lock for the 100th year of October solitude for the Cubbies.

No way Chicago makes the playoffs without a healthy and productive Soriano at the top of that lineup.

The division is there for Milwaukee's or St. Louis's taking...unless the Reds can trade Dunn for Salty, bring up Bruce and start him every game at the top of the lineup and in CF, and find a way to deal for one more starting pitcher until Bailey is ready to take over the fifth spot in the rotation.

HARANG, CUETO, VOLQUEZ, ARROYO, and BAILEY sounds so much better than anything we've seen in the rotation here for years, IF Bailey can finally get himself ready to win at the MLB level.

 
at 8:26 PM Blogger ST fan said...

Piazza addition sounds like a good move if he's in shape and can still hit. He brings a RHanded bat and some emergency back-up at ist and catcher. Drop Freel/Hopper or Hatteberg. May as well drop 2 and bring up one of the RHer bats now at L'ville. WIn this year, long term was O'Briens dream and it failed. I agree Jr is NO #3 hitter anymore, he's a 4 or 5 at best. I'm afraid Dusty has messed up Dunn. I saw Dunn in spring training swing weakly at a pitch he would have taken and then he went to a seat beside Baker rather than the bench. I wonder what was said?

 
at 8:26 PM Blogger Ron said...

I think a lot of people are missing the point here, but what else is new...ha..probably myself included.

I was always disappointed about letting Cantu go.

And in retrospect, it was not good either.

Piaza would be a downgrade of a platoon 1B from Cantu...

Oh well, live and learn..

Redlegs!!!

 
at 8:37 PM Blogger bluegrass said...

Looks like Dusty is trying to give that lineup another chance. I think Votto will do great if they keep playing him. He is the type of player that has to play every day. Don't you think that they need to a right hand batter using Dunn and EE forgetting about getting a bench pinch hitter.

 
at 8:41 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

I was always disappointed about letting Cantu go.

And in retrospect, it was not good either.

Piaza would be a downgrade of a platoon 1B from Cantu...


Considering Piazza can no longer hit, walk, or field...I'd agree with you. But, offesively it wouldn't take a whole lot to be better than Cantu.

 
at 8:47 PM Blogger Aaron said...

WOO HOO! Griffey! I called it! I got crazy magic powers, I tell ya!

 
at 8:52 PM Blogger Greg said...

i'll agree that griff should be moved in the order... i think 2 lineup changes would make a world of difference! swap Phillips and JR and Edwin & Dunn making 3,4,5,6 - phillips, griffey, edwin, dunn...
phillips is our best hitter and should be in the 3 hole... jr fits well in the 4 hole... put dunn behind edwin for 2 reasons... 1. edwin can't protect dunn... and 2. dunn can protect edwin... (simple... ) i think votto would do a better job protecting dunn than edwin... just a thought... griffey needs to stay on the team! i wouldn't be upset if they picked up the option for next yr and let dunn go take a pay cut in free agency... no problem with that at all...

 
at 8:52 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

WOO HOO! Griffey! I called it! I got crazy magic powers, I tell ya!

Trade 'em. He's terrible. j/k

Griffey is the best hitting right fielder right now in the NL. 2nd aside of Vladimir Guerrero in the AL.

 
at 9:07 PM Blogger Redleg city said...

To all the alarmist. Has the sky started to fall yet? The season has just started and it is too early to panic and become " Chicken Littles "

 
at 9:13 PM Blogger Joe said...

Sure you called it Rob Dicken, sure you did.

Fukudome....got to be careful with that one....good hitter too!

 
at 9:17 PM Blogger Aaron said...

No I called it, he was quoting me.. go look at the first coment in this thread.

 
at 9:27 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

Yeah, I am just kidding Joe.

Reds need to score some more runs. a 1 run lead against the Cubbies is not a good enough secured lead.

 
at 9:33 PM Blogger Joe said...

Jr. certainly is not the player he was when the Reds got him, but I would not trade him. He is still one of the most popular players in Reds garb, he is well respected around the league and he is a credit to the community. If there were a chance to trade him to a team contending for a championship, maybe. I remember when players spent their entire careers with a team, then came Flood... Not the same business today, so you hang on to them when you get one like Jr.

 
at 9:35 PM Blogger rob said...

John,

Handicap the Piazza rumor as far as him going to the Yankees or Reds. Considering he spent most of his career in LA and NY Piazza he might have a prefenrence for the Yankees. Then again, Baker said he could recruit players to Cincinnati.

 
at 9:36 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Going into today's game, Patterson had the third lowest OBP of all Reds position players. Only Freel and Castro have lower OBP. Can any of you Dusty Baker supporters explain why it's a smart move to have him leading off? I've never managed a major league team, so obviously Dusty must know more than I do about putting together a lineup, but I'm having a hard time figuring out why he's right and I'm wrong about this.

 
at 9:40 PM Blogger Red Faced said...

Aaron, please begin ripping Dunn and EE also so they will hit homers for us tonight too.

I agree on the Griffey comments by the way. I think his lack of speed on the basepaths costs us a lot in double plays as well.

I was afraid the wind blowing out would be hard for Harang to keep the balls in the park. Here's hoping we can get some more runs on the board. Surely Dunn can hit one out tonight... right?

 
at 9:42 PM Blogger Red Faced said...

Yo Zippity - you are right on the Patterson comment. I didn't understand the move when we picked him up especially since he was another left-hander and we are obviously short on quality right-handed bats.

 
at 9:46 PM Blogger ankurv5 said...

John, can you ask Dusty why he decided to pitch Harang tonight instead of having him pitch against Zambrano tomorrow? I would think a Fogg vs. Dempster matchup is better than a Fogg vs. Zambrano. I understand about the rest, but is it really THAT big of a deal?

 
at 9:47 PM Blogger ankurv5 said...

Just saw Aaron's comment, please say that Griff won't hit a homer every night!

 
at 9:50 PM Blogger Aaron said...

Before Dunn can hit one out he has to get the bat off his shoulder. And he is taking because they are pitching around him beause he has NO PROTECTION. hence Encarnacion's struggles are directly linked to Dunn getting pitched around. Anyone less than Griffey can not protect Dunn. The lineup should have Dunn batting directly ahead of Griff for the purpose of protection. What's the point of separating left handers when Griff hits lefties just as good as he hits righties????

 
at 10:03 PM Blogger John Fay said...

They wanted to keep Harang on his regular turn.

My guess is Piazza doesn't become a Red. I have no idea about the Yankees.

 
at 10:03 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

Go Get Bedard...ooops he is on the DL.

We could have traded a bunch of our team for a #1 on the DL

Better that the M's had to deal with this...

 
at 10:05 PM Blogger Aaron said...

*SIGH* Bases loaded no outs and we settle for 1 run. Griffey double play was the killer. Like I said he has no business being in the #3 slot and we are doomed as long as he plays there.

 
at 10:12 PM Blogger John Fay said...

Lee made a great play on the ball Griffey hit. He could not have hit it much harder.

 
at 10:15 PM Blogger Aaron said...

But John with the overshift and the quality of defensive players, that is to be EXPECTED. Are you surprised the ball didn't eat up Lee? A top tier #3 hitter gets it done one way or another. They don't just "hit the ball hard". They bat well over .300 and drive in well over 100 runs otherwise they don't belong in the number 3 slot.

 
at 10:21 PM Blogger JF said...

Ah the smell of Dusty's apathetic, bumbling, careless, defeatist, error-prone, flailing, groping, hapless, incompetent, joyless, keystone kop, loser Reds...

I just can't wait to hear you guys praise Dusty when the Reds are 15 games under .500 later this season.

For all the talent this team has, there is still a void of fire, leadership, drive, and desire.

Dusty brings none of that. Never has. Never will.

 
at 10:27 PM Blogger tennesseered said...

Dunn loves to be pitched around because he loves to keep the bat on his shoulders. Do you realize he hasn't made contact in exactly 50% of his at bats? That might be fine for a leadoff hitter, but not your #5. The OBP is way overblown, particularly for the #5 hitter. #5 needs to be aggressive and wants to be up with men on base. That's not Adam Dunn.

 
at 10:31 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

Ah the smell of Dusty's apathetic, bumbling, careless, defeatist, error-prone, flailing, groping, hapless, incompetent, joyless, keystone kop, loser Reds...

I just can't wait to hear you guys praise Dusty when the Reds are 15 games under .500 later this season.

For all the talent this team has, there is still a void of fire, leadership, drive, and desire.

Dusty brings none of that. Never has. Never will.


I just wish you would say something positive. I smell the pitching getting rocked today.

BTW, man oh man...Carlos Marmol is tough!!

 
at 10:32 PM Blogger Janelle717 said...

This game has me very sad. Switched over to Law & Order but decided to check in on the blog.

Hope they do sign Piazza. A RH power hitter would be a good thing. Just curious as to how we'll do with FOUR catchers or would MP be just a back-up 1B?

'Night, all!

 
at 10:33 PM Blogger Janelle717 said...

By the way, who'da thunk that Cueto/Volquez would be better for my fantasy team than Dunn and Harang? hahahaha!

 
at 10:41 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

RELEASE TODD COFFEY NOW!!

Why is he still even on this team?

 
at 10:41 PM Blogger Richie Rich said...

Is the Piazza speculation going to be anything like the Blanton speculation? If so, let's save the server space.

Two very obvious points if we weren't all too lazy to look up statistics.

1) Piazza, while once a great player has no gas left in the tank.

2) Cantu stinks. If you don't think so, believe me, the GM is right not to pay him in arbitration and you are wrong.

Now back to watching Coffey strengthen his case for being cut.

 
at 10:45 PM Blogger Brendan T said...

Atta boy Coffey, we expect nothing less!

 
at 10:47 PM Blogger oldtimer said...

Another lousy effort. Good old Todd Coffey, who made this team without much effort. I guess last year meant nothing.

Harang has one of his gopher ball games, Reds blow rally, relievers X, Y, and Z give up a bunch right away, bats completely silent at end of game. Dega vu all over again. Could be the start of another early free fall in the era of Krivsky. NOT looking good at all

This sappy syrupy "Griffey love' based on his supposed god=given need(?) to hit no. 600 here in Cincinnati is absurb. He bats 6 or 7 on a decent team, and is platooned. Let him swallow his huge pride and do it for the team, there's nothing worse than being stuck with an aging superstar who can't admit he's nearing the end. And to those who say trade him, who really wants him and what real value would we get?

Dusty isn't very popular in Chicago. I wonder why.

This team is seriously flawed. and I mean seriously.

GO with Hopper, Keppinger, Phillips, Votto, Cabrera, Hattieberg, Griffey, Bako, and pitcher. Believe the bubble gum cards and get some guys up who are hot and can hit. Votto plays left and Dunn warms the bench till he straightens out his swing.Coffey gets a one way ticket to Sberia.

 
at 10:48 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

Atta boy Coffey, we expect nothing less!

He's such a lovable loser, though isn't he?

 
at 10:49 PM Blogger Aaron said...

Wow with Fogg vs Zambrano tomorrow I'd say a 5 game losing streak is pretty much guaranteed and we are only half way thru the first month of the season. I don't want to be a Chicken Little but this is a bad beginning to the season and there are far more questions then there are answers.

 
at 10:58 PM Blogger Rob Dicken said...

GO with Hopper, Keppinger, Phillips, Votto, Cabrera, Hattieberg, Griffey, Bako, and pitcher.

Nonsense, oldtimer. Why would you lead off Hopper over Corey Patterson? Hopper doesn't have any power and doesn't draw walks. Corey Patterson has power, drives in runs, and doesn't draw walks. They're both fast...I am not sure the advantage there.

I say put Griffey in the 5 hole. You have to put him in the position to drive in runs, or he won't. Keep Dunn in the lineup and move him down as well. Sitting players out doesn't help their hitting. Letting them hit does.

I definitely wouldn't play Jolbert Cabrera over EE either. EE is young and deserves to play, Cabrera is old and has had his time. Although, we do need his hitting on the bench to use.

 
at 11:05 PM Blogger Brendan T said...

That he is, Rob Dicken. It's seriously becoming comical watching Coffey pitch. It's like a train wreck that you can't stop watching.

 
at 11:14 PM Blogger JF said...

Cantu is the starting third baseman for a team that is 8-5.

Cantu has better stats than EE right now.

But even if Cantu were here, the Reds would still have serious problems.

2008 is all about Junior hitting #600 and the Reds somehow finishing out of last place and above .450.

And that's it.

 
at 11:15 PM Blogger REddlegg in Colorado said...

It's getting kind of annoying to Watch this team underachieve.Almost as annoying as Rob's paste & comment post's.

Decaf has to go.Period,bottomline!!! If he's on this team by tomorrow afternoon,I will be very disappointed with management.Krivisky may be buying a one way ticket out of here,very soon.Pathetic,isn't it.

Griff who I like,but don't gush at him like others do ,needs to step it up.Fay don't stick up for Griffey,he killed the rally.Bottomline.It wasn't like Lee made some incredible play,Griffey just made a horrible one.This team needs to get the cylinders working on full steam or it's the same story from the past.

Krivisky,Baker,Pole,& Jacoby.Get this vessel on track.There needs to be more urgency in making decisions to fix the holes.The longer you wait with this crew,the deeper ^&*# this team will be in.

 
at 11:22 PM Blogger rls said...

Please tell me why we couldn't get at least a prospect for Cantu

 
at 11:33 PM Blogger Redsfansince72 said...

John why not ask Cleveland what it would take to get Garko?? Votto and Maloney?? this would free up a lefty hitter at 1st base. To either bat between Jr and Dunn and move Phillips to 2nd in the order and Keppy leadoff as Patterson hardly ever gets on as a leadoff hitter!!!

 
at 11:36 PM Blogger John Fay said...

I'm sure the Reds tried to trade Cantu. Remember, once he became as free agent all 30 teams could have signed him to a big league contract. None did. He went to Marlins on a minor league deal.

 
at 11:41 PM Blogger Redsfansince72 said...

John, Wayne was pimping Cantu as Mr RBI when he got him.. he did hit well for the Reds in his short stint and i thought for sure they would have kept him as a RH hitter with home run power, letting Hatteberg be traded and let Votto be your starter at 1st. To say he makes to much at only 1 million when Castro sits and is a waste of a bench player without power !!

 
at 11:42 PM Blogger William said...

Tonight - Josh Hamilton, 1 for 2, 3 WALKS - ALL ON FULL COUNTS - on base 4 out of 5 at bats!!!!!!!

 
at 11:51 PM Blogger William said...

Just a little quick update - Josh Hamilton, 1 for 2, and GET THIS -- 3 WALKS ON FULL COUNTS TONIGHT!!!!! So, he's on first base 4 times in 5 trips to the plate. NO STRIKEOUTS!!! Oh, what might have been....

 
at 11:53 PM Blogger John Fay said...

I'm not saying the Reds made the right move on Cantu. I just tried to explain why they did what they did.

 
at 11:59 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Dunn isn't hitting much, but his OBP is just about the best on the team. Since he's never hit well with runners on base, I'd like to see him leading off. I'd bat Dunn first, then Kep, Votto, BP, Grif, EE, Patterson, and Bako. (Actually, I'd prefer to see Bruce hitting 5th or 6th, but I assume that isn't going to happen anytime soon.)

Regardless, I'm still waiting for a Dusty supporter to explain why Patterson is the right choice to lead off. This is a fundamental decision, because it determines how often the team's best hitters come up with runners on base, and it also determines who gets the most ABs over the course of the season. Dusty has ALL THE TIME IN THE WORLD to study the stats and ponder this very important decision, and he gets it wrong every single day. If he gets this EASY decision wrong, why am I supposed to trust that he's capable of making the TOUGH decisions during games -- when he has relatively little time to study the stats or think about what he's doing?

I stand by my assessment of Baker. I don't think he really understands the strategic aspects of baseball at all. Perhaps Dunn isn't the best choice to lead off (though I'm not sure what's wrong with it), but Patterson is OBVIOUSLY the wrong choice, and everyone but Baker seems to recognize it.

 
at 12:04 AM Blogger KevinFtMyers said...

Dont need a hamilton update thank you. I wonder if there is some bone head on the Rangers blog posting Volqez's line when he pitches. Probably bugs the $h!+ out of them too. Its just very bush league, IMO.

 
at 12:19 AM Blogger robby said...

John, I'm glad you qualified the comment on Cantu. The Reds knew going into the offseason they were weak from the right side of the plate. Cantu should have been kept. Not to beat a dead horse but this organization is clueless. For every good move by Krivsky, and there have been a few, there are an equal number of bad moves. A small market team has to be smarter than the big market teams if they expect to compete. This roster is seriously flawed and there doen't seem to be anyone on staff capable of fixing it. And for the guy who writes about all the talent on this team, which team is he watching? It's not the 5 and 7 record that is the concern. It is the fact that the team does not play with any sense of purpose, just like the Reds of the last 7 years. Baker was supposed to change that culture. (not going to happen with this group of players) I'm guessing a total reload comes next year, with Krivsky, Griffey, Dunn, Encarnacion and others gone, meaning the rebuilding starts in earnest.

 
at 12:24 AM Blogger robdicken said...

It's getting kind of annoying to Watch this team underachieve.Almost as annoying as Rob's paste & comment post's.

Oops! I did it again!

I'm as tired writing the stuff as you having to read it. But, I feel the need to defend myself over common sense type of stuff.

Griff who I like,but don't gush at him like others do ,needs to step it up.Fay don't stick up for Griffey,he killed the rally.Bottomline.It wasn't like Lee made some incredible play,Griffey just made a horrible one.This team needs to get the cylinders working on full steam or it's the same story from the past.

I saw a 2 run homer early in the game that put us ahead. I agree with you that it did kill a rally, but Griffey did his part today. Pitching did not.

 
at 12:30 AM Blogger REddlegg in Colorado said...

Why you hating on Hamilton Kevin,the guy was fun to watch.I've been watching ranger gm's when the reds are not on.Hamilton is an exciting 5-tool player watch.

The Hamilton updates don't bother me Will,i wish the guy the best.it was disappointing to hear him go,but that's baseball business.Gotta give what you do not want to give, to take what you need.

i heard Wally & Beav from FSNCN say that Krivisky didn't want to do the deal for Volquez.I wonder if Walt played a part in that,by overriding Wayne & telling BC to pull the trigger?

 
at 12:36 AM Blogger robby said...

Why do the Hamilton updates bother anyone? I'm one who thought Hamilton's upside was so good that he should not have been dealt, but many on this site argue that the need for starting pitching was too great. I for one will watch closely the statistics for both players as the season unfolds. That's one of the fun aspects of following baseball. Second guessing trades and debating who got the best of a deal is enjoyable. If Hamilton were still a Red he would be their best all around outfielder by far. Was it worth trading your best all around outfielder for a number 4 starter with a lousy track record? Wouldn't the enthusiasm and excitement that Hamilton generates be fun to watch?

 
at 1:28 AM Blogger oldtimer said...

Why is Dunn bad at leadoff? I find it surprising you even ask. How about a lifetime .240 average and 180 strikeouts a year? Do those sound like good numbers for a leadoff guy? Plus he can't steal. He can't lead off, he barely is adaquate in the 5 hole, which goes to a slow power guy usually. Add that to his lousy defense and what you have is a specialty player on a team with lots of holes that can't afford him because there are too many more pressing needs.

I can't believe Hopper didn't even earn a shot at leadoff after last year. The guy, along with Keppinger, can Flat out HIT!! WAke up, Baker, and give this guy some starts in a row. Cory freakin' Patterson?? PLEASE!! Hopper was a Tasmanian Devil last year, getting on base at a whirlwind pace. Plus his bunting for hits messed with the defensive alignment of the other teams, putting them on their heels and out of position. I like how he mixes up the lineup and makes the Reds a little unpredictable. A good leadoff man needs to make contact and hit the holes for single. Rod Carew and Maury Wills exemplify this. And why all this love for Patterson? he's at .238 and falling after tonight. A couple home runs and lots of outs is not what this team needs at leadoff.

They say Baker like to play favorites, and it looks like Patterson proves the point. Like I said earlier, he's good for late game defense, but he's never shown any ability to hit well for a whole season. He resembles Gonzalez, Freel, Ross, Castro, and even Encarnacion at the plate- lots of bad ABs.

Hopefully Krivsky has some trade magic he can work and soon, or maybe Bruce gets hot and ready faster than expected. BAker needs to play whoever is hot, not whoever is highest paid. Otherwise this could be a long season, and I'm already ready to blow up my TV if I hear Arroyo sing one more time in that commercial.

What has happened to this franchise???

 
at 1:41 AM Blogger Ron said...

Tomorrow is a new day.

Go Redlegs!!!!

Foggy pitched well enough in his last outing to beat the Cubs in Chicago today/tomorrow.

John Fay.....what do you think about flipping Dunner and JR. in the batting order?

 
at 2:56 AM Blogger KingsPoint said...

Adding MIke Piazza to the REDS' 25-man roster is the dumbest idea I've ever heard. What moron came up with this idea?

 
at 3:51 AM Blogger Zippy said...

Dunn's career OBP is 381. Hopper's is 379. Patterson's is 298. I'm not absolutely certain, but I believe Dunn's career OBP is the highest of any current Red. What difference does it make if a lot of his outs are strikeouts? As a leadoff hitter, the goal is to get on base, and Dunn does it better than anyone else on this team. Period. Against righties his career OBP is .404, and it's a respectable .353 against lefties.

True, he doesn't steal many bases, but a lot of his hits are HRs, which makes the steal considerably less important.

By the way: Pete Rose had exactly ZERO steals in 1975. In 1976 he stole 9 (in 14 attempts). Seems like the team still managed to score a few runs even with that slowpoke clogging up the bases. Rose's lifetime OBP was .375, which is lower than Dunn's, and Dunn is actually a much better base stealer than Rose. Factoring in the HRs, Dunn would actually be a more productive leadoff hitter than Rose.

If Dunn had a knack for driving in runs, I'd see things differently. But he obviously doesn't, so he'd be most productive hitting leadoff. Too bad Reds management will never notice this.

 
at 8:14 AM Blogger KevinFtMyers said...

Not hating, redlegg, I love Hamilton, I also hope he does well, but, I am fairly proficient at using the internet, as is anyone else on here. That info is not beyond the reach of anyone one here. I just dont see how its relevent to the Reds and their situation right now.

I also think the Cantu discussions are pointless.

I mean, why not talk about what could of been if Bench was still playing. It aint going to happen.

Im just not a "boy, if we just could have done this, then this and that and the other thing might have happened" kind of guy.

I Just see it as a waste of time.
Just my opinion, maybe noone cares, but whatever.

 
at 8:50 AM Blogger KevinFtMyers said...

I was for a Piazza signing before the season, in fact I may have been the first to mention it. At the time I was looking for anything to help this team improve.

I think he can be a good pinch hitter, but its clear after 14 games, there are bigger issues.

At this point I think they need to focus on an everyday player, like a catcher, 3rd baseman, or true leadoff hitter. Particularly right handed players. I know thats easier said than done, but noone said being GM is easy.

I also think it would need to involve trading a guy that before the season we would have said "no way he gets traded". (EE, Dunn, Agon, Hatteberg). Guys like Freel, Hopper, and Castro just arent getting anyone "all hot and bothered". Maybe package them with one of the others just to clear the roster spot.

I like the suggestion some one made of trading for Crede in CHW. Convince them that EE is still going to "break out", and throw in Freel for good measure. Problem is, the White Sox are winning some games and Crede has alot to do with it. Would have been more possible if they were like 3 and 11 instead of 8 and 5.

I would really like to see something happen to know that things will be different, but 3 months after I originally suggested it, I realize Piazza aint it.

Piazza is one seasons worth of help, we arent going to the series this year, or maybe not even the playoffs, so that approach doesnt make sense.

 
at 9:44 AM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Thanks John, for letting us know the reason that Cantu was let go. Another Amazing Krivsky strikes again move, in my humble opinion.
St CSA

 
at 9:49 AM OpenID cincy6115 said...

Can we just clone Phillips and Keppinger and maybe bring up Bruce (is he Left handed?) Seems like one of them should be in the lead-off spot, but then again we need them to drive in the runs no one else does. I don't know what Baker did to Dunn, but he doesn't look good, should have prob 2 legitimate HR's by now and only has the glove shot in Mil.

 
at 9:54 AM Blogger Jon said...

Dunn at leadoff would be the laughingstock of MLB. Please try to make sense.

Hopper IS our leadoff guy if someone would just let him play. Furthermore, when he does play, LET HIM SWING! every now and then. Bunt here, bunt there, it limits him.

This is a funk I don't see them coming out of until next week, buckle up folks!

 
at 12:00 PM Blogger robdicken said...

Thanks John, for letting us know the reason that Cantu was let go. Another Amazing Krivsky strikes again move, in my humble opinion.

CSA, I hate to nitpick at you, but considering the information that was given to you, this comment doesn't make any sense. You have statistics for fielding and batting for the guy PROVING that he can't get the job done, but yet you still say it was a bad move. Is it that "gut feeling" you have?

"Gut feelings" don't make championship ball clubs, DUDE! If you were GM, we'd definitely be MORE of a laughing stock of the National League.

 
at 12:23 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Yeah, Jon, just like the 1st place White Sox are a laughing stock for having Nick Swisher (with his 82 career HRs and 4 career SBs) leading off. White Sox fans must be so embarrassed to have a leadoff guy who actually gets on base and gets driven in. And they must be quite ashamed of the fact that they're 7 and 3 in games Swisher has played. Poor, poor White Sox fans. Too bad their manager doesn't understand that the potential to steal a base is far more important than actually getting on base. I pity them.

 
at 12:45 PM Blogger Clueless Krivsky said...

Have to love how everyone likes to try and make this Corey Patterson's fault. Thank God we have Patterson or we'd have two fewer wins then we already have!

Like I read on another site, I think Patterson averages a run scored 1 every 5 at bats, and Hopper and Freel right now are much worse.

They may be getting on base, but as usual, nobody's hitting them in.

This teams problems have nothing whatsoever to do with Patterson.

This teams problems currently center around 3, 4, and 5 hitters who don't drive anybody in, which is exactly what they are paid to do.

At least Patterson has taken the initiative to drive himself in 4 times already, which is 4 more times than either Hopper or Freel will have done by the all-star break combined.

 
at 1:40 PM Blogger Richie Rich said...

Have to love how everyone likes to try and make this Corey Patterson's fault. Thank God we have Patterson or we'd have two fewer wins then we already have!

Short sightedness at its finest. Patterson's OBP is .280, meaning he's making an out at a whopping 72% clip. The leadoff guy's job is to get on and get over. If he was doing this consistently, the Reds would potentially have more runs scored, and likely wouldn't need late inning home run heroics by not only himself but others as well. It's nice that he hit a couple homers at critical times, but if he was doing his real job more often, the Reds would be in a better spot. Right now, they're getting consistent outs from hitters 8,9, and 1 and there's no rally potential 3-4 innings per game.

 
at 1:44 PM Blogger KevinFtMyers said...

John,

I seem to be missing a couple of posts from earlier today, and have had one lost once before. I also recall another poster saying the same. Any info on this?

You dont need to post this comment, but maybe address it in a future post.

The comments I made in those posts, were not important, just want to feel like im not wastimg my time.

Thanks for everything!

 
at 1:44 PM Blogger Richie Rich said...

If Dunn had a knack for driving in runs, I'd see things differently. But he obviously doesn't.

I'm pretty sure they don't charge these days for looking at a guy's RBI column. You should try it.

 
at 2:23 PM Blogger Jon said...

Zippy,

Hopper OBP .379
Dunn OBP .381

What's the difference? Oh yeah,

Hopper SB 2007 14 (300 ab)
Dunn SB 2007 9 (520 ab)

Maybe Philly can call you up for advice on getting Howard in the leadoff spot instead of Rollins.

 
at 2:51 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Richie,

Oh, they have all sorts of stats I can look at for free. For example, I can see that Dunn hits .221 with runners in scoring position, and .215 with runners in scoring position and two outs. I'm also aware he has a grand total of 17 SFs in over 4000 plate appearances. That isn't exactly a knack for driving people in. By comparison, Prince Fielder hits .283 with runners in scoring position (5 points higher than his overall average) and has hit almost as many SFs (14) as Dunn in about a third as many plate appearances. See the difference there? Fielder has a knack for driving people in, Dunn does not.

 
at 3:00 PM Blogger Clueless Krivsky said...

"The leadoff guy's job is to get on and get over. If he was doing this consistently, the Reds would potentially have more runs scored"

------------------

Ya?? Who would be hitting him in?? Griffey?? I don't think so. Phillips?? I don't think so. Dunn??? I don't think so.

Look at Keppingers OBP, noboby's hitting him in.

I would agree with you if we had Pujols hitting 3rd or 4th but our middle of the order guys are too inconsistent.

I'd rather have the guy who can jack out 20 from the leadoff spot and generate his own run scored.

Keep in mind, we could get 20-25 extra runs scored (homers) from Patterson instead of Hopperleading off and not needing anyone else to hit him in.

 
at 3:33 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Jon,

Dunn's SLG last year was 554. Hopper's was 388. Hopper stole 14, but he was caught 6 times, so the net is 8 extra bases due to stealing. If he has 600 ABs in the season, that amounts to 16 extra bases due to steals. Dunn stole 9, but was caught only 2 times, so the net was 7 bases. So you're excited about Hopper's extra 9 bases? I'll take Dunn's .554 SLG, thank you very much.

Oh, and Rollins SLG last year was .531, which is a lot closer to Dunn than Hopper. He also stole 41 bases while being caught only 6 times. He's a great leadoff hitter because he combines OBP with SLG AND an ability to steal bases WITHOUT being caught. There's no comparing Hopper to Rollins.

Meanwhile, if you check last year's stats, you might notice that Howard hit considerably better (both avg and SLG) with runners in scoring position, while Dunn hit much better (both avg and SLG) with the bases empty than he did with runners in scoring position. This isn't rocket science.

I'm not saying every power in the league ought to be hitting leadoff, I'm just saying that, given the players we have on this team, Adam Dunn should be leading off. And I'm not saying it's always wrong to put a base stealer at the top of the lineup. I'm saying Norris Hopper isn't the best leadoff guy we have on this team. Dunn is.

 
at 3:47 PM Blogger Zippy said...

Clueless,

BP is hitting .400 and slugging .667 with runners in scoring position. Unfortunately, with Patterson leading off, he's only been up 17 times with runners in scoring position. In those 17 chances, he's got 2 walks and 6 hits, including a HR and a double.

Yes, we'd be scoring more runs if we had a leadoff hitter who occasionally led off an inning by getting on base.

 
at 6:22 PM Blogger Jon said...

Zippy,

OK, well put, I concede your argument, but think, like most people, perhaps stupidly, that Dunn OUGHT to be able to produce higher RISP #'s, and HOPEFULLY will. If you take his power out of the middle of the lineup you may regret it. Would you think to bat the P 8th and catcher 9th to allow for some more RBI opportunities or what? Dunn's RBI's would go down alot, no? Who would pick those up? BTW, Hopper should be better at stealing, don't you think?

I'd be interested to see what you think the lineup should look like with Dunn leading off. Would you plan on OBP in the front, and RISP in the back? How would you make up for Dunn's drop in RBI's?

 
at 9:47 PM Blogger Mike said...

I assume Piazza would cost more than $1 million....

 
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