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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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Thursday, May 8, 2008

Free agents, 13 of them

Much has been made about the fact that Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn are free agents after the season. In Griffey's case, the Reds hold an option. But they can let him go with a $4 million parting gift.

But 11 other players on the current 25-man roster are free agents as well. That's the most in baseball. Here's the list:

David Ross
Javy Valentin
Paul Bako
Scott Hatteberg
Jerry Hairston Jr.
Corey Patterson
David Weathers
Jeremy Affeldt
Kent Mercker
Mike Lincoln
Josh Fogg

Ross also has an option -- for $3.5 million.

Walt Jocketty is going to have a chance to makeover the roster. Those 13 players accounted for $43 million of the $74.1 million payroll.

But the veterans under contract for next year all get good raises, so the Reds are on the hook for $46.5 million for six players:

Bronson Arroyo $9.5 million
Francisco Cordero $12 million
Aaron Harang $11 million
Brandon Phillips $4.75 million
Ryan Freel $4 million
Alex Gonzalez $5.375 million

I hate to write about money and contracts, but this all affects what the Reds can and cannot do.

Hopefully, this post will change the current debate, which I'm not entirely sure is about.


at 4:11 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

its no wonder WK was fired

Arroyo 9.5 million... hes toast other teams have him figured out

cordero 12 million..signed 2 years too soon

freel 4 million..just a waste of good money

gonzalez 5.3 million..keppinger is better and makes less

good luck Jocketty

at 4:14 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

LOL, I am not sure either John. The only one of those free agents the Reds should consider for next year is Affeldt.

I trust Jocketty will do a much better job at putting together a competitive roster for next season than The Amazing Krivsky did.

How do we get rid of Gonzalez? He needs to go too.

at 4:22 PM Blogger Greg said...

gotta be honest... all but 1 of those free agents i don't have a problem parting ways with. i think we need to hold onto Affeldt ... unless, we can replace him.

looks like our catcher situation won't be addressed until next yr, but it'll be interesting to see what transpires. I wonder how Bako's situation pans out, the guy is off to a great start but.... then again Ross had a great season his 1st yr as a red...

i'm really bummed... i have been going thru the day thinking there was a game tonight...

at 4:25 PM Blogger kylemack said...

John I am beginning to think that none of this matters, The Reds are cursed after how they treated Jack McKeon. His Reds teams won 96 and 87 games in 99' and 2000. He was fired and replaced by Bob Boone. I think there is a curse on the Reds.

at 4:26 PM OpenID miami87 said...

With the possible exception of Valentin as a backup catcher/PH and Lincoln as a middle reliever (and both paid accordingly) I don't want any of those FA players back.

I'll take my chances with our young talent and the street free agents Jocketty signs.

at 4:31 PM Blogger Red Faced said...

I'm not saying it will happen but I could very easily justify seeing just about every one of those 11 go. Makes me wonder how many of these guys will be gone by the trade deadline.

At most I'd keep one catcher (right now Bako leads) and likely 2 or 3 bullpen guys. I can easily see Hatteburg going by the trade deadline, not sure of the others. This team might be extremely busy come the trade deadling, much more than I originally suspected.

AGon getting over 5 mil next year makes Freel's 4 mil look better and there's nothing more I'd like to see than Arroyo come around and earn his 9.5 mil but I'm not very optimistic about that happening.

at 4:34 PM Blogger Greg said...

ya know... corey patterson... why did we go with him when we could have got kenny loften? that for some dumb reason just dawned on me...

could be the ST move that would have made a huge difference in this team...

(yes.. this dawned on me when i was listening to sports nation on espn radio... but it makes sense)

at 4:34 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Freel, Gonzalez and Arroyo, a $20 mil parting gift from The Amazing Krivsky.

John, what do you think it would have cost the Reds to sign Jorge Cantu for this season? My guess is considerably less than a mil.

at 4:35 PM Blogger Kyle said...

I kind of doubt that all 13 of these guys finish the season as Reds. I'll bet atleast 3 or 4 get traded or released. Hatteberg is probably getting traded at some point, and i would be surprised if Fogg lasted the season.

at 4:43 PM OpenID bashbrother12 said...

David Ross ( goes )
Javy Valentin ( goes )
Paul Bako ( goes )
Scott Hatteberg ( trade )
Jerry Hairston Jr. ( goes )
Corey Patterson ( goes )
David Weathers ( trade )
Jeremy Affeldt ( stays )
Kent Mercker ( goes )
Mike Lincoln ( stays )
Josh Fogg ( trade )

my lineup for next year would be

3rd - keppinger
cf - stubbs
2nd - phillips
1st - votto
lf - ee
rf - bruce
ss - valaika
c - free agent or catcher traded 4





the youth movement needs to happen

at 4:53 PM Blogger Mason said...

Now Im not joketty but I would take Griffey to a 1 year or so, Dunn*, Paul Bako, Jeremy Affeldt, and Mike Lincoln. Let the rest go.

*With Dunn I would offer him a little less considering that when the Red's made up that contract they expected him to get better, but in fact his homers have remained the same and average has dropped.

I think they should go after some young hitters to help build around votto, bruce, and the young pitching staff.

Let's trade most of these players at the deadline and get some rising prospects who are a year or less away.

at 4:56 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

That's quite a situation to be in! I still say the Reds need to resign Dunn but don't build around him. Build around Votto, Phillips, Bruce, Encarnacion. Think about how much better the Phillies were last year when Pat Burrell got hot. I'd take Dunn over Burrell at the plate and the field. If you want to win you need to spend money. Money on Dunn (I'd guess around 15 mill or so) is what it will take.

I'd do what I can do resign Lincoln and Affeldt. Lincoln is a nice middle reliever if his arm holds up. Affeldt has been pretty darn good. Hairston is a real nice bench player who can all over the field. Obviously Fogg will be gone. So will Hatteberg. I'd have to think Patterson won't be back as well. There are parts already in place to replace those players.

I don't think these questions will have as much to do about money as can you replace people. I'd love to have David Weathers back, but do you have a young reliever ready to emerge in his place (Bray or Burton). If so do you have another young pitcher to replace that player (McBeth, Roenicke).

The big question to me isn't with Griffey and Dunn but what do you do at catcher. I can't believe at 35 Bako just figured out how to hit. He'll likely come down to earth. Ross isn't your answer even if he played like he did in 2006 (He's 31). Javy obviously isn't the answer. The best young catcher they have anywhere close to the majors is Craig Tatum, who's still in AA and only hitting .226. They'll likely have to keep Bako/Ross or spend some money getting a guy on the market or thru trade to hold the fort until Devin Mesoraco is ready.

How the guys in the minors develop should play a huge part in this whole mix as well. Will Paul Janish hit enough to be your every day SS? Will Chris Valaika be ready to move to 3B and hit in the majors, allowing you to move Edwin to LF. Or how quickly will Tod Frazier advance through the system? This allows you to move Dunn. How far away is Drew Stubbs? Is he close enough to move Dunn, put Bruce in CF for now until Stubbs is ready to take over. So many questions with the young guys.

Should be an interesting season and even more eventful offseason.

at 5:03 PM Blogger Lego Man said...

David Ross - NO
Javy Valentin - NO
Paul Bako - maybe (right price & terms)
Scott Hatteberg - NO
Jerry Hairston Jr. - NO
Corey Patterson - NO
David Weathers - maybe (right price & terms)
Jeremy Affeldt - YES
Kent Mercker - NO
Mike Lincoln - YES
Josh Fogg - NO

And hope to heck someone wants to help take Freel and/or Gonzalez off the books.

at 5:05 PM Blogger Jeff said...

John, what are the chances that Daryl Thompson and Josh Roenicke make the club out of spring training next year?

at 5:16 PM Blogger krivskywasgood said...

My take on the free agents:
David Ross-good as a backup catcher, but he's going to be paid too much for this ballclub
Javy Valentin-he's serviceable as a backup catcher but really should be a pinch hitter only at this point in his career
Paul Bako-how much longer can he continue hitting like this? If he finishes the year strong, I still wouldn't pay him too much-he'll be 39 next season.
Scott Hatteberg-hopefully the Reds can find him somewhere this season where his great services can totally be appreciated-I wish him the best
Jerry Hairston Jr.-about the same sort of thing as you get from Freel off the bench with maybe a better batting average and not terrible baserunning-keeping him for a low price might be okay
Corey Patterson-Ugh-the sooner he goes, the better. If he's signed next year, it should be for less than a million
David Weathers-Another guy who you really have to wait on, but he's a good guy who I wouldn't mind seeing back
Jeremy Affeldt-I'd like to see him back since he is a very important part of the 'pen this year and is still fairly young. What would the bullpen be like this year without him? Would we still have Stanton?
Kent Mercker-It depends on how the whole year goes-but his leadership in the clubhouse is apparently pretty big
Mike Lincoln-same as mercker, except I don't know about his leadership
Josh Fogg- Hopefully he'll be moved (apparently the Rockies want him back)
Bronson Arroyo $9.5 million-this is way too much, and I think it's quite evident that Krivsky made a mistake here. However, he's capable of putting quite a few good starts in a row, unless he actually is injured.
Francisco Cordero $12 million-People say he was signed too early-I argue that what he does for the bullpen has kept us from losing probably 5 or more additional games.
Aaron Harang $11 million-To pay this little for Aaron Harange is truly amazing-and nothing less-kudos to Krivsky for this.
Brandon Phillips $4.75 million-I'm glad Brandon will be around here for a long time-he brings so many good things to the team.
Ryan Freel $4 million-I wonder if someone who doesn't see him much would be willing to trade for him?
Alex Gonzalez $5.375 million-I'll be glad when he comes back, if he's fully healthy, as he'll provide another righthanded bat with pop and great defense, but I still want to see Keppinger in the lineup almost every day. Perhaps when he comes back one of our corner outfielders will have been traded and Kepp can go to RF/LF?
Adam Dunn-I think that the fact that Krivsky didn't have any talks about an extension going on probably means something, and I'd be surprised if he finishes out the year with the team if the team doesn't start playing better, and if he doesn't hit with RISP
Ken Griffey Jr.-I seem to be one of the few people who would like to see Griffey still here at the end of the year and then decide what to do with him. He's swinging the bat better than Dunn and will always play infinitely better defense. He's also much more willing to take advantage of the shift than Dunn is. People wouldn't want him out of town if he was hitting .300 (I guess that goes for Dunn too though, but I think that Bruce is going to take the spot of Dunn/Griffey as opposed to Patterson/Freel, who he should be replacing)

at 5:21 PM Blogger John Fay said...

My guess is Cantu would have been in the $1.5 million range.

at 5:24 PM Blogger John Fay said...

I think Roenicke and Thompson both have a shot. It will be interesting to see how they do when they get bumped to Louisville.

at 5:27 PM Blogger anti-media said...

WOW, Look at those numbers...good thing the Cluless misfit W.K. is gone !! I'm hoping DUMB & Dumber (JR. & Dunn) are gone ASAP !! Bring up Bruce & free up lots of cash, we need players who play for the team not themselves !! GOOD INFO. John

at 5:31 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

bashbrother - I like your lineup, just not for 2009 and not at the positions you mentioned. Chris Valaika is a shortstop right now but doesn't project there. He isn't advancing up the minor league ladder b/c of his defense. He projects at 3rd or even 2nd base. Also, right now Drew Stubbs is playing high-A ball. He's hitting well there but I really doubt he's ready to be the every day CF in 2009.

That lineup you are talking about has talent but is VERY young. You would make Jeff Keppinger, Edwin Encarnacion and Brandon Phillips your two oldest players. They would struggle for a year or two pretty bad.

More realistic:

3B Jeff Keppinger, R
CF Jay Bruce, L
2B Brandon Phillips, R
1B Joey Votto, L
RF Edwin Encarnacion, R
LF Adam Dunn, L
SS Paul Janish, R
C Who knows???

SP Aaron Harang, RHP
SP Edinson Volquez, RHP
SP Johnny Cueto, RHP
SP Homer Bailey, RHP
SP Arroyo, Darryl Thompson, or a traded for player

CL Francisco Cordero, RHP
RP Jared Burton, RHP
RP Jeremy Affeldt, LHP
RP Matt Belisle, RHP
RP Bill Bray, LHP
RP Mike Lincoln, RHP
RP Marcus McBeth, RHP or Josh Roenicke, RHP

at 5:40 PM Blogger Gunner said...

Unless we make trades, there is no really decent alternatives to Dunn & Griffey out there in free agency in '09 ... and other than Bruce nothing immediate in the minors. Even still, letting Jr & Dunn walk or trading them at the deadline is what we need to do. We have tried going with this current group for too long. Its not working. We either go with a full fledged youth movement next year or start trading our top low level minor league talent for some talented players. The Marlins have several guys who are hitting arbitration this offseason and if their habits hold to form, they will start peddling these guys off to the highest bidder. SS Ramirez & LF Willingham just to name a couple. But the long term deals to sign these guys is going to be expensive a long with Florida is going to want a lot in return. So I vote for going with the youth movement and sign some of the mediocre vets that will be available in F/A to short term contracts until the rest of the guys in the minors are ready. Stubbs should be in AA by the end of this year & Valaika just got moved there. Frazier just got a bump to Sarasota and is beginning to get playing time in the OF. If he stays hot, he could be in AA by years end also. If we decide to dump Arroyo & Belisle out of the rotation by years end, we will have Bailey who is all but ready now & Thompson, who should be in AAA already, not far behind. Travis Wood is also pitching well at High "A" and with our dearth of starting left handers, could be someone to really keep an eye on down the road.

at 5:48 PM Blogger bolero said...

On Monday of this week, I commented that Bray was sent to AAA because the BATS were playing in the town near where he grew us and has family (Virginia Beach). I went to the BATS game today. After the game, Bray was informed he would be headed to New York to rejoin the Reds for tomorrows game. I don't know who is being sent down, or put or the DL.

at 5:51 PM Blogger Gunner said...

Coach, I dont like the thought of Eddie in the outfield .. he just doesnt have the body of an outfielder. I think Dunn walks this offseason or is traded. I'd move Votto to left field & move Eddie to 1st before I'd put Eddie out there. I realy like the idea of putting Janish in your lineup though. I have been high on his defense and his offense seems to be coming around at AAA. That would leave us with an opening in RF ... or CF if we chose to put Bruce in right. Coco Crisp would be an idea trade target to put out there until Stubbs was ready IMO.

at 5:54 PM Blogger Gunner said...


Interesting bit of info ... I know Fogg has been drawing interest from the Rockies ... maybe a trade is being finalized.

at 5:55 PM OpenID eastsidemarker12 said...

Speaking of Alex Gonzalez...

what is his status and when is he due back?

at 5:58 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

Gunner - My issue with Edwin in the outfield isn't his body, its whether or not he'd be able to adjust to flyballs off the bat. What is an OF's body? Not ripping, just haven't heard that before and want to know your thoughts.

As for Votto moving to the outfield, I don't want to see it. He has really worked hard to become a darn good defensive 1B (or at least flashes of it with potential to be darn good). Edwin is short and doesn't give the IF's as good of a target as Votto, who is at least 6'2 and very long.

I like Janish at SS. I saw him play a few times in Dayton when I was living in Lima and against the Tides when I was living in Norfolk. Loved his glove. He's not a great athlete but really read the ball well off the bat and took great angles to the ball. He showed solid range even then. He's starting to show a little pop in his bat, but hsi defense is good enough to have him up next year assuming Gonzalez is gone.

at 5:59 PM OpenID bashbrother12 said...

john have you seen devin mesoraco play any ? any idea on how he did in extended spring training before being called up to dayton

at 6:00 PM Blogger Joe said...

David Ross
Javy Valentin
Paul Bako
Scott Hatteberg
Jerry Hairston Jr.
Corey Patterson
David Weathers
Jeremy Affeldt
Kent Mercker
Mike Lincoln
Josh Fogg
Adam Dunn
Ken Griffey Jr.

Any of these players that can be traded should be traded for prospects. Dunn is the only one who would attrack an near ready prospect, unless someone develop a real urgent need for a DH, than you may get a near ready prospect for Jr. Age just kills a trade with Jr.

Are the Reds and Rocks still talking about Fogg? May be able to throw in Affeldt and get a good propect or two in that trade. I'm not seeing much trade value in Patterson, Hairston or Ross. Valentin may have some DH and backup catcher value for a team in need of either, but he is not going to get a near ready prospect.

I would be in favor of keeping Affeldt, Lincoln and Dunn, but only if you can keep Dunn for the right money, which is much less than what he is making now. He is too much of a one demensional player and his salary should reflect that.

The Reds are going to need some big money when it comes time to keep EE, Votto, Cueto and Volquez. Not to mention if Bruce pans out, he will be a real big ticket player.

at 6:01 PM Blogger Mr. Redlegs said...

John . . . I wrote a blog note about the 2009 escalating salaries during spring training and I think I came up with about under $17 mil of actual free monies for the Reds. No question payroll msut climb, perhaps by $15 mil to $90 million.

If you part with those 13 players--and who's to say they won't--you have to replace them with someone, and the average MLB salary this year is $3.15 mil. You also look at next year's free agent class and there's really nothing exciting there, at least not in a decent price range, so it all makes you wonder what this team can do to be better next year in order to be fully competitive in 2010.

Could a scenario occur where Dunn agrees to a one-year extension because he'd be entering free agency off a year that lowers his market? That might be win-win for player and team.

at 6:01 PM Blogger John said...

Jocketty turned over the roster in St. Louis when he took over. Within 2 years there was only 1 or 2 players left over from the previous regime. Look for the same thing to happen with the Cincy roster.

at 6:09 PM Blogger Gunner said...


I understand your comment. I have played 3rd all my life, granted it has been in recreational baseball & some professional softball leagues. I am built a lot like Eddie, minus a lot of talent. Some guys just look out of place in the outfield. Like Dunn, he is an OF in a 1B body. Corner infielders just have a different altheticism ... better for quick, short movements vice long, fast running ones. Eddie just isnt built for it in my eyes. Votto on the other hand is built for it more .. it would come more natural too him, plus he already has experience at it in the minors. When I look at guys like Manny Ramirez ... I see corner infielder written all over him. Its probably just me though ... its what I see when I look at a guy and compare him to many of the players I have played with or observed. There is an exception to every rule though. Cal Riplen to me was a corner infielder who exceled at SS dispite the eyeball test. I hope that explains my opinion better.

at 6:10 PM OpenID bashbrother12 said...

i wouldnt mind getting another arm in the free agent market this year i would think derek lowe would be a good choice giving his groundball to flyball ratio also aj burnett i think would be a good fit but what the hell lets just go ballsy and outbid the yanks and get texiera in a red uniform

keppinger - ss
stubbs - cf
votto - lf
tex - 1st
phillips 2nd
bruce - rf
ee - 3rd
who cares - catcher

at 6:12 PM Blogger Adam said...

Let's hold on a second.
Of the list of FA's for next year, only a couple of those guys should be considered for keeping (maybe). It'll be interesting to see which ones he'll keep. Making a negative Krivsky comment about the money on the books for next year is a bit insane. Let's look at this:

Arroyo: Trash right now, but if he gets himself worked out, $9.5 million for a starter who can throw 200 innings is not a bad deal. Meaning, the deal was NOT bad when it was made, and even with his crap year, it's not that over market (meaning again, a team would probably pay him 8 million/year easily even right now in a multi year deal).

Cordero: Now, that was just a dumb move. Krivsky definitely blew this one. They should have made deal to get a guy like Huston Street for prospects, or convert a current reliever who throws hard to take that over (anyone remember Jared Burton). Closer is the most overrated position in baseball.

Harang: no problem here

Phillips: Maybe the prize of all the WK moves, terrific deal and at a bargain price

Freel: a bit heavy on the money, but not insane. It would be less insane if they actually made the correct moves and got rid of Griffey etc and gave him more game time to utilize that cost.

Gonzalez: not a huge fan of his, but $5.375 for a starting SS who can do everything pretty well isn't that bloated. I’d like to see him gone as Keppinger is a fine player, and LISTEN UP, much cheaper. But this is a sunk cost right now.

Overall, the only big mistake and issue here is being saddled with Cordero's contract. Arroyo is having a bad year, but he'll have trade and team value if he picks himself even a bit soon.

Unfortunately, the utter disgust that fills me in regards to the disgraceful firing of Krivsky is even worse now. This is the time where Wayne could have done really well. He's a very good young talent evaluator - whereas Jocketty was almost always in the game of spinning prospects off for Ruben Sierra type players.

This organization needs to stop messing around and BUILD. WK was the first guy to do that in a long time - with drafting a great crop of young players - and he was let go because Castellini is friends with Walt. I am not taking away anything from Walt's resume, but really, everyone and their mother knew WK was gonna be canned so WJ could take over. The ugliest part about it was that they said it was based on a 9-14 record. That is a joke. This team was looking better than it has in a long time. And sadly, the organization is continuing to make stupid moves instead of buckling down and realizing if they aren't going to spend $150 million on payroll, then they need to get a nice mix of vets and young players. Krivsky did this well and so far, despite the record, there is a lot to be excited about in Cincy. Fans can't complain about how bad the team is from one end of their mouth, and then complain about needing to sign Barry Larkin for another contract out of the other (and then when the team does it, complain it didn’t work out).

If Walt does this correctly, he's in great shape. If any of those FA's are rated highly enough (probably not because most of them stink) he can offer arbitration to some, hope they get signed as FA’s and hopefully get some supplemental picks for them.

He needs to rid the city of Griffey and let him retire somewhere else (that should have been done YEARS ago). He'll have to live with WK's biggest mistake - the albatross of Cordero's contract.

Pray that Arroyo pulls up his big boy pants, the 2 youngins (cueto and volquez) progress and Harang stays strong. The rest is offense, or "gravy" and if Walt has any sense left, he can get low cost, high value players through smart trades and bringing up some young guys.

God Speed Walt.
Go Red’s
*A Reds fan in DC

Make it happen Walt. Godpseed.

at 6:14 PM Blogger robdicken said...

Give it up about Cantu for crying out loud. Spread your undying love for him over at the Marlins blog.

Keppinger is NOT better defensively than A-Gon. A-Gon covers more ground and is capable of getting to balls that Keppinger is not. Not to mention, because of his coverage, he is also capable of rolling the double play more than Keppinger as well.

Hopefully Arroyo bounces back to 2006 form. That's what we're sure as heck paying him for.

at 6:16 PM Blogger John Fay said...

The Reds aren't going to have a ton of money to play with, unless the payroll goes up and I assume it will.

Talked to Jocketty for a story about the all the free agents. "It gives us great flexibility. We've got to decide what to do with it."

I have not seen Mesoraco. Farm director Terry Reynolds said he was good in extended spring. He's not going to be the guy in '09.

But catching is a huge need going forward.

at 6:22 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

robdicken - No doubt when healthy Alex Gonzalez is a much better fielder at shortstop. I wish he was in the lineup actually. He has some pop at the bottom of the order and from the right side.

My really huge concern with him is he is 31 and having leg problems. Age and leg injuries are never a good combination. With the type of injury he is battling through I don't see him being the same player at SS.

As for Arroyo I don't see what there is to recovery from. He's thrown a ton of innings, came to camp supposedly in the best shape of his life, and he is getting his brains bashed in out on the field. He just doesn't have any juice. His fastball has flattened out and is slower. He's forced to go to his junk more, which makes him very hittable. He was so effective in 2006 and parts of 2007 b/c he could compliment that junk with a nice 89-91 MPH fastball that had a little movement and he could place it. Now he's 85-87 on the fastball, it's flat, and teams are crushing him. I like Bronson alot, he makes zero excuses, and he seems like a good guy. I just don't see how he bounces back.

at 6:25 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

Gunner - I see what you are saying. Here is how I judge a corner outfielder, especially in a small ball park. Can he hit? Edwin to me will be a given .280, 15-25 HR's, and 75-90 RBI's. That's not too shabby. He is a decent athlete (not great by any means) and has good instincts (as he has shown at 3B). My only concern for him would be range (not the fleetest of foot). A 1B to me, on a team like Cincinnati, has to be able to field and has to be rangy. Votto to me suits that position more so than Edwin. But like you said, it's personal preference. If Edwin were at a position that allowed him to focus more on his offense I think he would take off. 1B doesn't allow him to do that. LF and RF would.

at 6:26 PM Blogger NVreds said...

people seem to not understand what "range" is. AGon has waaay more range than Kep (keppingers defense has been improving by the way, he is practicing more at it).

Range = balls you can get to AND get outs on. Not just balls one can get to. Keppinger will never be gonzo defensively, though like I said he has improved a ton.

We dont have to trade/sign gonzalez to be a player that can help this team, everyone who's crying about us needing to go out and find RH power is forgetting that we can get it for free when this guy come off the DL. Expect kep/gon to timeshare with keppinger getting more playing time elsewhere on the diamond.

the amount of errors gonzo had last year? thats not a good enough argument, he set a record in Boston for an errorless streak at SS or something and has made a career out of good D, so one bad year is WAAAAAYYYY too small a sample size.

at 6:30 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Cantu would only have been 1.5 million John? cant believe we let the dude walk

Good luck to jocketty

Keppingers range and performance is fine. He will continue to be our starting SS even if Gonzo comes back

at 6:33 PM Blogger Rob said...

fire sale time in the Queen City.

at 6:37 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Keppinger sure looked like he had a lot of range the other night. I cant remember how many times I saw Gonzo juggle the ball last year trying to make the same play

thanks JAB

no school tonight Rob?

at 6:53 PM Blogger Chillicothe redfan said...

I have seen alot of comments on the Cordero signing, specifically that it was too soon, and I think many of us are forgetting a few things.

First off, remember the pain we all felt last year, the absolute dread that washed over your body when we went into the 8th inning last year with a lead? Perhaps you all have forgotten so soon. We had the second worst bullpen in the bigs last year, and they were bad on a consistent basis. In signing Coco, we got a dependable 9th inning guy which allowed us to move Stormy to his natural setup role. This team has some issues, but the bullpen by and large hasn't been one of them.

Two other positives about Cordero. One, he's a great clubhouse guy and I think really helps build the confidence of the other bullpen hurlers. Think having a trusted, experienced vet in the pen is overrated? Look at the Devil Rays this year. Troy Percival has helped to turn around the only bullpen that was WORSE than the Reds pen last year. Finally, everyone has raved about Cordero's ability to work with Volquez and Cueto. He may be giving them the confidence they need to be solid for us for years to come.

The free agents do give us flexibility, and the Cordero signing has helped the Reds in more ways than we know. I am glad to have him

Go Reds!

at 6:58 PM Blogger Arden Dulou said...

Cantu would of been one guy to hold on to. It was weird when they released him.

Not a great list of FA. If Bako keeps this up give him a 1 year contract. Trade whoever who can for minor league guys.

The biggest issue is Dunn and will be until he is/isn't traded. Until he shows signs of progress in BA he is just another Dave Kingman type.

at 7:20 PM Blogger ST fan said...

The biggest Reds need is a TOP CATCHER. That's where Detroit started to rebuild a few years ago when they had an awful team but signed IRod anyway. They've gone forward ever since. The other spots can be juggled and traded in all sorts of ways but a top catcher is a must and anchors the team.

A good bull pen and solid closer effect the offense in a very positive way. The hitters don't have to play for a blowout to over come a bad bullpen (like last year). They can play for a 1 run lead and expect to keep it. Cordero is clearly an asset. Keeo him.

at 7:24 PM Blogger CoffeeMan said...

Let them all go, or trade them for young prospects. Bring up Stubbs and Bruce as soon as possible.

at 7:25 PM Blogger 13 for the HOF said...

Dunn sucks.He is the modern day Dave Kingman.He only hits homers when it doesn't matter.Never gets a hit in the clutch.bases loaded the other night and he pops up.Surprise .Nobody in their right mind will trade for him.Should of last year when his stock was a little high.

at 7:45 PM Blogger ST fan said...

Word from Florida is that Red Sox are interested in moving to Sarasota. That's one team I'd go see. Leaving Sarasota was as dumb a move by BC as firing WK. BC fires from the hip and seems to not be patient enough. Wish I could fire BC lol.

Any word on Sarasota situation, John?

at 7:50 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

agree and disagree jack.
Kepps range is fine. Not Great. His arm is fine. Not Great. Kepp is ok on DP's, AGon is great.
Gonzales has superior range and a superior arm and he will start.

In fact, Keppinger is coming back to earth. His 330 OBP is the same as AGon's last year, and more like his first 2 years in the bigs.

AGon also give more power. thru 130 abs, Kepp has 16 RBI's.

In 393 AB's last year, AGon had 55, a better pace than Kepp.

Kepp is a nice role player but he is not a Major League Shortstop. We Need both our starters and great role players like Kepp

at 7:59 PM Blogger John Fay said...

Kingman's career average was .236, his on-base was .302, his slugging was .478. He only hit 40 or more home runs once. He only drove in 100-plus twice.

Dunn's career average is .247, his on-base is .380, his slugging in .518. He's hit 40 or more four times and driven in 100 or more three times. Kingman played until he was 38. Dunn's 28.

You can rip Dunn but to compare him to a guy with a OPS that's .116 lower isn't fair.

at 8:02 PM Blogger John Fay said...

One thing Jack was right about is the seriousness of Gonzalez's injury. I don't see him playing till the All-Star break.

He hasn't even started to run yet.

at 8:04 PM Blogger redfuture said...

It's interesting that the newly advanced Frazier is playing LF rather than SS in his first game for Sarasota. May he advance through the system quickly!

at 8:17 PM Blogger John Fay said...

That's extremely interesting. Frazier is going to hit. If he can play SS he can play left. He's the one guy among the top prospects who walks a lot -- .402 on base at Dayton.

at 8:18 PM OpenID MrGemsbok said...

I guarantee you, if Jocketty fires Dick Pole as soon as possible, Arroyo, Belisle, Cueto, Bailey and just about the entire pitching staff will be saying good bye to their problems once and for all.

I have resigned myself to the inevitability of Griffey getting traded. Unlike most people here I could mention, I'd hate to see him go. I think he got a raw deal----from the injuries (wich he got by playing hard, not by being lazy), the Boy Wonder's unfullfilled promises to build a team around him (blame should be equally distributed to Lindner, who didn't believe in spending money on a baseball team) and also from disloyal fans who choose to ignore the first two factors and blame the entire fate of the Reds on Griffey.

I do expect Dunn to be resigned. But I wonder if Castellini told Krivsky not to open negotiations because he had planned to fire Krivsky the minute Jocketty was hired. Maybe this is supposed to be Jocketty's deal to make.

Freel is worth the money as long as he's being played and not having to take a back seat to players like Patterson. Hasn't anyone else noticed this trend of Baker's? Jay Bruce's knee is sore for a couple days----Baker says he has a history of leg problems. Baker then claims Freel told him he couldn't play evryday----wich we all know he's not the type of player to say that. This was all engineered by Baker so he could convince them to sign Patterson. Jocketty will need to sit down with Baker and tell him these are not his choices to make.

The thing is with a utiliy guy like Freel is, nowadays they don't last long, not because they can't play but because this is where teams cut down payroll. Wasn't 5 years ago, Eric Owens was playing evryday at different positions for the Padres and actually doing a good job. Two years later, he's out of baseball. Same with Chris Stynes. People always need these kinds of players but they don't want to pay for them.

I also expect Encarnacion will be traded and probably at the deadline. Gonzales will not come back just to sit on the bench, so Keppinger (another utility specialist) has to play somewhere. Plus, with three SS prospects (Janish, Valaika and Frasier) rapidly on the way who could all be moved to third, Encarnacion is easily replaced. And he would definitely get a good return, even if his fielding is horrible

at 8:24 PM Blogger redfuture said...

Chris Valaika just hit the first strike he saw out of the stadium to the off field!

at 8:55 PM Blogger Adam said...

One thing the reds HAVE to do right now, is determine cost effectiveness and VORP. I don't have the stats in front of me so I am not quoting VORP stats, but I want everyone here to think about the A's for a minute. Since 1999, the A's have been a VERY good team every year except last year (when they used the DL over 20 times). Sure, they only got through the ALDS one time, but I know every Reds fan here wished this organization had the same success over that period.

Here are some thoughts:
1. Cordero was a fine closer. However, he's way too overpriced. I won't go into this too much because no other team will take on that contract so, as mentioned, it's a sunk cost - and the team is stuck with it. However, let me mention that the A's since 1999, have won many many games with guys like Isringhausen, Billy Koch, Keith Foulke, Arthur Rhodes, Octavio Dotel, and Huston Street. Izzy became a closer in Oakland, Koch had his best year in Oakland, Rhodes stunk in Oakland and was replaced by Dotel, Foulke had his best year in Oakland, Street takes over and becomes ROY. Point is, with a limited budget, you can't sink so much cash into a guy you have to GET to. They plugged guys into the role and still won. Anyways, I am sickened, lets move on.

2. SS - Alex Gonzalez at $5million isn't a huge deal. But he's just overall not that great. He's not a bad deal at that price, but he's basically a sub .700 OPS and he's reasonable in the field. This year Keppy has the second highest fielding percentage and respectable ZR. Keppy showed last year he can hit and field well and play multiple positions. He's also near the league minimum this year and next and then arb eligible through the 2012 season. That's called COST CONTROLLED. He's a great bargain and while he really should be a utility guy, he's got enough skills to be a low level starter and is perfect for this team.

3. Dunn. I love the guy, but he needs to be a DH. He's a terrible corner OF and that is simply the easiest position to replace in baseball. Frankly, he's a guy who can probably pull in a couple good prospects and they can't pay him $12/million per year anymore. There are so many other strong players they could get who would come with less power, but could improve their defense - and save a ton of dough. They either have to trade him at the deadline or wait it out all year, offer him arb (which he won't accept) and then collect a very nice draft pick. For $13 million, the team could get 2 player to help.

The farm system is deep. It's time to stop messing around and BUILD and call up these guys and surround them with serviceable, affordable veterans (guys like Hattey - not necessarily him, but guys like him).

Castellini said, when he ignorantly fired Krivsky, that they are spending too much money for this type of return. I got news for him, some of this is still Dan Obrien's left overs (ugh...). Finally the team is in a good spot with an ENORMOUS oppty to make a real change and improvement, and they hand it over to someone else. That's unfortunate.

Say what you will about Wayne, he didn't do everything right - he made some mistakes, but he did way more good than bad. And I don't remember ever seeing a GM, go out and fill needs like him. When they needed bullpen help, he traded Lopez and Kearns for the relievers. It didn't work out, but the entire city cried about losing those 2 guys and they haven't done anything since they have been gone. Nothing was missed. And Wayne tried to fill a need. He needed a closer and he got one this year (overpaid, but whatever). There is a golden oppty to cut payroll and gain more prospects and I hope Walt can do it.

at 9:04 PM Blogger Chad said...

John, you mentioned the Reds won't have a lot of money to play with next year. Is my math correct here? With just a 4% increase in payroll (hopefully it's more), the Reds will have over $30 million to spend on free agents (after subtracting out the six veterans). Also, we'll have a large number of players making near the major league minimun (Votto, Bailey, Voltron, Cueto, Hopper, Bruce, Keppinger, one or two of our minor league relievers, and Edwin, though I think Edwin may be arbitration eligible next year). That'll be a little over $5 million. That still gives the Reds $25M to sign about 10 starters (or less if we promote minor leaguers next year). That will be tough.

Do my numbers seem reasonable to you?


at 9:05 PM Blogger CoachD178 said...

I'm not a huge Dunn fan. He frustrates me to no end. I'm tired of seeing him take a called third strike on a borderline pitch when he should be hitting it where it is thrown or at least try to get a piece to stay alive. But that is his game.

But to say Dunn sucks or that he can't play a part in the Reds winning is just wrong. Also, he isn't the most clutch player in the world but this notion of he doesn't hit homers when it matters is also wrong. Just this year I can think of at least four of him HR's being at a relatively meaningful period in the game.

Over the past four years Dunn has hit for an average of .253, which isn't great. But he has averaged 42 HR's a year, 100 RBI's a year, 103 runs a year, and 109 walks a year. The walks greatly increase his on base percentage which helps the team score runs. Even when he isn't hitting worth a darn he will still get on base via the walk.

The problem is that people are expecting Adam Dunn to be something that he isn't. He's not a guy who can put a ball club on his back and carry them for a season. Only the truly great ones (like Griffey in the 90's) can do that. Dunn isn't a middle of the order hitter. Putting him there is asking him to do something that his game doesn't dictate. He's not a .300 hitter. He's not a guy who will take a pitch 2 inches off the plate and drive it into left field. That's not his game. He is what he is. A guy who can hit around .260, hit 40 HR's, drive in 100 runs, score 100 runs, and have an on base % of around .400 can help a team win a championship. But only if you use his abilities the right way. Put him in the 6 hole and leave him alone.

The Reds need to build around Votto, Encarnacion, Phillips, and Bruce. Let Dunn just be a piece to the puzzle and not the answer. Just let him play his game and stop trying to turn him into something he isn't. If he does that, and is allowed to do that, he can absolutely help this team win.

I'm not saying don't trade him. If you can get a major league ready pitcher in the mold of Cueto, Volquez, or Bailey than make the deal. But don't give the guy away.

at 9:09 PM Blogger Richie Rich said...

Amazing how Votto is hitting .407 against lefties and people still want to drop 1.5 million on Cantu. Even more funny, harping on the GM for not doing so. Apparently, Cincinnati doesn't have the most knowledeable fans afterall. Nice duck on my post in the other thread CSA. That pretty much says it all.

at 9:15 PM Blogger Richie Rich said...

Adam, very refreshing to see something other than batting average and wins and losses from someone on this site. Very good analysis. Might fall on "deaf ears" around here though because of the Cantu love-fest. What is your opinion on him?

at 9:44 PM Blogger kingseyeland said...

I'd let all of them walk, and have fun in the next draft with any compensatory picks that might come along.

If Affeldt, Weathers, and Lincoln end up having good years, I'd consider 1 year contracts for each. Same with Bako. Otherwise see above.

After those few, there's not a single name on that list whose production can't be replaced with a current Reds minor leaguer at a fraction of the cost. (I'm counting Hatteberg as replaced by Votto already.)

at 10:05 PM Blogger ST fan said...

Great quote from Dog's blog: "Keep Dunn because he annoys Marty so much." I love it. One thing about this team is that it gives Marty some real reasons to be his caustic self.

at 10:29 PM Blogger Joe said...

Well at least the Reds have some options developing in the farm system, and that in large part is due to WK.

The entire Cantu deal mystifies me. To bring him on board when they did and then to let him go in the manner they did? Votto will make us forget Cantu very soon I suspect.

The 2009 Reds cannot help but be a stronger team than the 2008 version. It is going to cost some money to stop the losses just like it cost money in baseball to keep winning. How they spend the money appears to be the key.

There is no doubt mistakes have been made. Taht's baseball. Zito - bet the Giants would like to have a crystal ball and that deal to do over! Every team bites the rotten egg at some time.

Dunn for the right price, with the right line-up around him, would work for the Reds. He may be one demensional, but he is a very good one demensional player and decent at the rest of it!

I would hope we give the Coco deal more than 45 days before judging it. I remember how he was treated by the fans in Milwaukee. Those fans were upset, they were upset that he left them. The bull pen has been much better this year and his presence at the end of the line is not the only reason, but is a reason for the noted improvement. I want more time to assess David Weathers in his new role. He is an old man by baseball standards, but so what if he can get the slider over. He is a good leader in the BP.

at 10:31 PM Blogger PresidentJohnAllenJr. said...

If it's true what Jocketty said that the Reds needs three to five years to make it to the playoff. Then, I would trade as many as I can to provide the opportunity for the young players to make the roster.
I would even trade Harang for six prospects. The A's got young players to help the ball club (Haren).
Griffey Jr. for Clements
Dunn for a pitcher.
Weathers for prospects unless he takes a cut in pay.
Trade Ross with Valentin if you can get Clements from the Mariners.
Keep Affeldt, Bako and Lincoln.
Fogg to the Rockies for a young pitcher.
Hatteberg and Arroyo to the Yankees for Hughes.
And Finally, fired the hitting coach because of Patterson, Griffey Jr. and Dunn. In spring training, they were taking the ball to left field. Now, jacking the ball to right. Patterson hit four home runs and now he thinks he's Babe Ruth.

at 10:42 PM Blogger Zippy said...

"Dunn sucks.He is the modern day Dave Kingman.He only hits homers when it doesn't matter."

Uh... seems like just yesterday he hit a HR when the game was 1 to 0. I guess he must have anticipated the final score would be 9 to 0, and that's why he was able to hit a HR?

His previous HR (three days ago) was with a runner on base in a 5 to 3 win. It's REALLY hard to argue that one didn't matter.

It sure would be nice if the Dunn bashers would occasionally check a few stats before bashing...

at 10:52 PM Blogger Mark T said...

I've been looking at this team through beer goggles. The numbers you put up tell quite a story - a collection of ragtags and some overpriced veterans, and a commitment to a closer with nothing to close. Maybe Wayne weren't so hot after all.

at 11:25 PM Blogger Dave said...

Coach and bashbrother, good posts. Valaika isn't ready yet, nor is Stubbs (who's gonna be a star for us), nor is Waring, et al this isn't the NBA or the NFL where your draft picks play in a year or two. With that said, the lineup will be a mix of AAA talent (the guys there now, plus a Cueto-type or two - maybe a guy who started at Chattanooga this year) and this roster.

at 11:38 PM Blogger Dave said...

Let's really break it down here, by position/reason for leaving:

C - Bako and Ross (unless someone better gets released or we pull a trade). It offers a L/R option with good D. Valentin is a liability in the field and a .270/15 HR player if he played every day - you know, Paul Bako without the glove.

Retire/move on due to age - Hatteberg, Weathers, Mercker - trades possible for any this year.

Move on/thanks but no thanks - Fogg and Valentine (again, trades possible). Griffey and Dunn, but only due to cost.

Re-sign - Bako/Ross (See above), Lincoln, Hairston (utility, since Freel will play more).

Moving on, wish we could've signed him - Affeldt...the guy wants to start. We'd love to have him back in our pen, but he left the Rockies for us!

Wild card - Patterson; if he hits .220 all year, he's done. If he gets it together, his defense makes him valuable as a one-year stopgag until we have a 4th OF ready from AAA such as Dickerson or Gil (since Dunn and Griffey are both gone).

In the end, we definitely lose Valentin, Hatteberg, Weathers, Mercker, Fogg, and Dunn.

Griffey and Patterson are production-based, though I think Jr. is out (sniff - favorite since '90, old age sucks), and I don't think Patterson will produce (they're both out).

We'll keep Ross, Bako, Hairston, and Lincoln, with Affeldt as a possibility, too (pay him, he's worth it).

At the end of the day, our payroll drops substantially, and who knows? If we continue to stink, we might trade Arroyo, too.

at 12:18 AM Blogger robby said...

Dan O'Brien's leftovers? Not one member of the Reds startng eight was acquired by Dan O'Brien. Blame away, but this is not Dan O'Brien's mess. In fact, I think 16players from the 25 man roster were acquired by Krivsky, and a few others were signed to multi-year contract extensions by Krivsky.

Krivsky might be a good scout. Only time will tell. He clearly was not too adept at putting together a competitive 25 man roster.

at 12:20 AM Blogger Hugh D. Pohl said...

John, good points on Dunn...the Kingman comparisons are way off base. Dunn is who he is but who he is is pretty good if looked at objectively. How much he is worth to the Reds is another matter.

at 1:14 AM Blogger Hip Happenin' Hally said...

There are a few posts mentioning Keppinger's defense, saying Alex Gonzales is better, or at least has better range. It's just not true.

There is a stat for range for infielders and Keppinger and Gonzales are almost exactly equal in range. Keppingeer has much better instincts when it comes to reading the batter's swing, and his jump on the ball is better than Gonzales. Gonzales is a bit quicker, but with his leg injury, I predict his range will now be lower than Kepp's. Plus Keppinger makes almost NO errors. Gonzales makes tons, tons of errors, both with the glove and his throws.

Keppinger is the SS of the future for this team. His only weakness is the double play; he hits into too many of them, which is why he should not be batting 2nd.

at 7:26 AM Blogger Mr. Doom and Gloom said...

sign affeldt to a 2/3 year deal before the season is over, don't let him hit the market. lincoln would be a good signing if you can get him on a 1 or 2 year deal for a million per. i guess stormy too if he's cheap. bring back bako as a backup catcher on a 1 year deal.

they had better hope some of the youngsters are ready next year. the free agent class pretty much sucks and none of these stiffs are bringing anything in a trade.

at 7:38 AM Blogger cincikid said...

John or anyone else,
What free agents would warrant Comp picks in the draft if we would just let walk after the season? Some of these guys might be more valuable if we let walk rather than trade.

at 7:50 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

I am still amazed that people think Gonzo will be back and replacing Keppinger at SS.. Kepp is one of the top fielding SSs in the NL with a very solid bat

It appears about 75% of sports fan in Cincinnati want Kennie gone

Don't be surprised if they move Harang and or Cordero as we retool. We are still a couple of years away from contending..

Hopefully they can move Gonzalez if he can come back from his injury

No hits for Hamilton last nite but he threw a great punch in the bench clearing brawl.. 2 hits and 2 more RBIs for Cantu last night

at 8:47 AM Blogger reaganspad said...

pretty simple Jack. Better is Better. AGon turns double plays. As a pitching team built on Harrang, Volquez and Cueto, Double plays are huge. Gonzales also produces more runs than Kepp.

Hats off to you on the severity of the knee injury. If Gonzales is done for the year, we need a shortstop. I like the idea floated of trading for Hanley Ramierez. With average free agent class, lets go after a really good one now.

at 8:58 AM Blogger reaganspad said...

Adam, I like the Cordero signing as a player, but even more as a leader. What he has done for Volquez and Cueto is priceless. Those guys are money, to have Cordero in their heads and finishing their games is worth even more than the 46 Mil we are paying for his 2.98.

I know it runs contrary to the billy ball of the A's, but these are 2 young Jose Rijo's who we need to make into Pedro Martinez's

at 9:01 AM Blogger Brad said...

I'm continually amazed at all of the Cantu lovers out there. Do you think Votto makes this team out of spring if Cantu and Hattie are both on this club?

Also, I love the trades people throw out there. Don't you guys realize the only ones you want to keep, are the only ones other teams want? Quit putting together "Valentine and Fogg for Santanna" type deals. Most of the guys on that list signed with us because nobody else wanted them anyway. You have to trade value to get value (see Hamilton for Volquez).

at 9:20 AM Blogger robdicken said...

Jack...we won't trade pitching to re-tool. After years of trying to get a solid pitching staff, we've got one, and Jocketty isn't going to trade that away.

A-Gon has better range than Kepp, which makes him a more viable option at SS. No one said to take him out of the lineup...just fielding wise, Gonzalez needs to be in there. Quit saying "he's just fine" because you don't pay attention to statistics, so that comment doesn't make any sense, nor do about half of the things you say.

at 9:23 AM Blogger Richie Rich said...

Dickerson and Gil??? I'm assuming this is more laziness on looking up stats since these guys aren't exactly doing anything in the minors. Other than Bruce, the only guy on the radar is Stubbs and he's still in A-Ball hitting .285 at age 23. Translation, free agent signings coming in the OF.

at 9:27 AM Blogger Richie Rich said...

It sure would be nice if the Dunn bashers would occasionally check a few stats before bashing...

Some people are too lazy or don't know where to look, I guess.

44% of Dunn's homers have ended the game, tied the game, or put the Reds ahead. That doesn't include homers in close games that close a deficit or extend the lead.

My comparison, David Ortiz is at 48%

Dunn also hits less solo home runs than Ortiz, Guerrero and Larry (Chipper) Jones.

at 9:31 AM Blogger Richie Rich said...

2 hits and 2 more RBIs for Cantu last night

Again, who would he play in place of? He can't play OF and Votto is better against LHP.

at 9:31 AM Blogger JF said...

Bako is the only player I'd want to keep on that list.

Keppinger is much better than fat slow A-Gone.

at 9:42 AM Blogger KevinFtMyers said...

If the Reds could get Ramierez I think they should, but I dont give up Keppinger if at all possible. The Marlins are always looking to go youger, so a couple of prospects and some cash, Maybe Mesoraco and Bailey.

But if you can keep Kepp, I would run out this lineup: (2008)

Ramierez SS
Kepp 1B
Votto LF
Bruce CF

in 09 Griffey is obviously replaced (maybe Hairston if he sticks and Walt aquires a catcher instead of another outfielder. Hairston could be a good cheap place holder for Stubbs.

at 9:45 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

you are assuming we are a team built on pitching..Keppinger looks fine turning double plays and makes less errors than Gonzalez

reagan ..you need to open your eyes ..Keppinger is the starting SS for the Cincinnati Reds and according to my sources they are delighted with him

of course you are the same dude that said Castro should start instead of Keppinger..that speaks volumes

There is a stat for range for infielders and Keppinger and Gonzales are almost exactly equal in range. Keppingeer has much better instincts when it comes to reading the batter's swing, and his jump on the ball is better than Gonzales. Gonzales is a bit quicker, but with his leg injury, I predict his range will now be lower than Kepp's. Plus Keppinger makes almost NO errors. Gonzales makes tons, tons of errors, both with the glove and his throws.



at 10:03 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Gonzalez averages about 50 RBIs a year..it looks like Keppinger will far surpass this

at 10:19 AM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Thank you Jack for the Cantu update, two more hits last nite. Releasing him was a pretty dumb move, huh?

at 10:23 AM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

By the way Dunn is definitely a left handed Kingman. Home Run or strike out.

at 10:31 AM OpenID Rossaroni10 said...


FYI Hanley is one of the worst defensive shortstops in the National League and what big prospects would the Reds part with? We would have to part with one or more of Bailey, Votto or Bruce to get Hanley.

I certainly don't mean this as an attack, but more as things to think about...

Adam, great post...

at 10:32 AM OpenID Rossaroni10 said...


FYI Hanley is one of the worst defensive shortstops in the National League and what big prospects would the Reds part with? We would have to part with one or more of Bailey, Votto or Bruce to get Hanley.

I certainly don't mean this as an attack, but more as things to think about...

Adam, great post...

at 10:39 AM Blogger Adam said...

Richie Rich, Thanks for the nice words. Batting Average and Wins/Losses are very overrated. Sure, we like to see a strong BA. People more now look at OPS etc. It depends on how the BA and OPS match up together, that's a better analysis. If a guy is batting .240 but getting on base, driving in runs and helping in other ways (as Dunn has in the past) then BA doesn't matter as much. Dunn is a good player. My point is, if Castellini is looking to win and not spend so much dough, it's not a smart move to invest $13+ million per year in a guy who is mainly a power hitter who draws walks and can't play defense. That money can be spent on 2 guys or reinvested in the draft or scouting in the Dominican etc.

Robby: I didn't say the bulk of this team was a Dan Obrien leftover, I am saying, the team was left in shambles because of Dan Obrien. Krivsky had nothing to work with and he started from scratch. My problem is, just as Wayne was making nice headway, with good drafts, smart signings and trades, he gets shown the door. Walt is picking up a terrific situation now.

You said that Krivsky hasn't been able to put together a strong 25. Has the team been very good recently? No. Would you say that right now the team is in a better place than it has been in years? Absolutely. Cincy fans seem SO impatient to get a winner on the field. Cincy ownership/management seem impatient too, but instead of fully rebuilding, they sit in mediocrity without fully retooling to actually set themselves up in a good situation. Krivsky has done the best job of that since 1999, the last year the Reds were any good. (They were mediocre the year after and have stunk since).

So Wayne basically took over a terrible team, a terrible organization, and a terrible situation. What did he do? Let's look at some moves:

2-13-06: Adam Dunn signed to two-year, $18.5MM extension.
*Cincinnati as a city would have cried as a whole if this was not done. (see: Barry Larkin)

3-20-06: Acquired Bronson Arroyo for Wily Mo Pena.
*An absolute BRILLIANT move. Arroyo is stinking right now, but hey, it's not like they signed Barry Zito right? Just a terrific move sending a corner OF for a SP with possibility.

3-21-06: Acquired David Ross for Bobby Basham.
*David Ross came in and absolutely hit. Flat out. He supplied similar power in 2007 while his peripherals came back to earth. But he supplied power at a position where it was needed. Basham ain't gonna do anything.

4-7-06: Acquired Brandon Phillips for Jeff Stevens.
*MVP trade - just an absolute STEAL.

5-26-06: Traded Cody Ross to Marlins for a player to be named later.
*Had one very good year, he's not a starter though.

7-13-06: Acquired Gary Majewski, Bill Bray, Royce Clayton, Brendan Harris, and Daryl Thompson for Austin Kearns, Felipe Lopez, and Ryan Wagner.
*While everyone had a collective cry in Cincinnati, this was not a bad move. Did it turn out well? Not really, but it's not like it turned out well for Washington either. What I will say about Wayne is he saw the BIG need they had in the bullpen and he went out and targeted the problem and brought in help. Felipe Lopez was relegated to a bench position and is just now starting again. Kearns was an injury prone Corner Outfielder.

1-10-07: Acquired Jeff Keppinger for Russ Haltiwanger.

2-6-07: Signed Aaron Harang to a four-year, $36.5MM extension.
*No Brainer and a steal. Look what Carlos Silva got. Look what Barry Zito got. Nice.

2-8-07: Signed Bronson Arroyo to a two-year, $25MM extension.
*This is sadly what guys who can pitch 200 innings are getting now.

4-16-07: Signed Ryan Freel to a two-year, $7MM extension.
*3.5 million / year for a utility guy is not insane. I wish they'd play him more for now and dump some others.

4-27-07: Traded Chris Denorfia to A's for Marcus McBeth and another player.
*Great deal - and he quietly got cash to cover Cormier's salary. I don’t believe Denorfia, is more than a 4th OF.

11-28-07: Signed Francisco Cordero to a four-year, $46MM contract.
*Too much money for that position, but I am impressed again, that he went out to solidify the bullpen which has consistently been a problem.

12-21-07: Acquired Edinson Volquez and Danny Herrera for Josh Hamilton.
*Great trade for both teams.

3-3-08: Signed Corey Patterson to a one-year, $3MM contract.
*Apparently instructed to do so by ownership/Dusty Baker.

There are other deals that are good and bad, but here are some. Wayne put this organization in a position to make some things happen. But what really needs to happen, is a mass movement of players and a rebuild. The organization seems to be totally against this, but I fear if it's not done, it'll continue to be a haven for mediocrity. I realize this is a proud organization, but it's getting embarrassing already. This is a great year to make it happen too, because they have already started it with bringing up guys like Volquez, Cueto and Votto. Continue it! Trade Griffey, trade Dunn by the deadline. Gain prospects.

The situation is, as I look at, you are either competing for the division and/or WC and trying to get to the post season, or you are out. Does it matter if the team wins 85 games and misses the playoffs, or 70 games and misses the playoffs? Not to me. I'd rather see the team do what is right and dump some payroll and players they won't be keeping, promote some youngsters, and have fun playing. Seriously: it is much more fun to see prospects play and lose than to see this team play and lose.

We have a solid SP foundation in Harang, Cueto and Volquez and if they can get Arroyo on track, that's a great 1-4. Pitching wins. I am not sold on Homer Bailey, but he may be here soon and let him see what he can do. It's a good time for that now.

at 10:41 AM Blogger Steve said...

Ross also has an option -- for $3.5 million.

Anybody who says we should pick-up his option is daft. The dude had one, count it, one good year and gets rewarded. Good for him but bad for us because he's been hurt and/or lousy ever since. Move on.

Valentine is on borrowed time. Bako's been nice, very nice but he's played for 10 teams and will come down to earth. He's a solid backp but not an everyday starter.

at 10:51 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Ross10..Reaganspad is the same dude that said Castro should be starting ahead of Keppinger 6 weeks ago..go figure

yeah we could have had Cantu for 1-1.5 million as John Fay told us yesterday

Put Cantu in LF and give us some consistent pop

"44% of Dunn's homers have ended the game, tied the game, or put the Reds ahead. That doesn't include homers in close games that close a deficit or extend the lead."

and what has our record been since done has been with us..microanalyze a terrible team all ya want

keep the same people get the same results

at 10:59 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Jack, not once did I say "night school." But nonetheless, I am not going to argue with you on stupid stuff. Dr Dickens

umm ..Rob you told everyone you work 60 hours a week and go to school at nites

pick a weekend game

at 11:01 AM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

adam..nice story..but what is ..is

this team is poorly put together and at this point in time ..stinks

thank you WK

at 11:12 AM Blogger Richie Rich said...

7-13-06: Acquired Gary Majewski, Bill Bray, Royce Clayton, Brendan Harris, and Daryl Thompson for Austin Kearns, Felipe Lopez, and Ryan Wagner.
*While everyone had a collective cry in Cincinnati, this was not a bad move. Did it turn out well? Not really, but it's not like it turned out well for Washington either. What I will say about Wayne is he saw the BIG need they had in the bullpen and he went out and targeted the problem and brought in help. Felipe Lopez was relegated to a bench position and is just now starting again. Kearns was an injury prone Corner Outfielder.

Kearns and Lopez stink. GMs knew this, except for Jim Bowden who Krivsky knew he could pawn these guys off on. They fit in nicely on that roster with Dmitri Young, Aaron Boone and Wily Mo Pena. Speaking of Bad GMs. This trade still can swing big in the Reds favor if Daryl Thompson keeps it up.

More ducking from the Cantu-lovers. That means the Cantu talk is all for ratings.

at 11:21 AM Blogger Mike said...

Build the farm system. It is the only way to compete in a small market. The Reds will never win the money game.

at 11:40 AM Blogger robdicken said...

Jack, you don't have any sources. Quit lying to everyone. Quit posting under your different IDs too. You're becoming quite annoying.

Adam Dunn is not a left-handed Dave Kingman. Read John's post from before. Statistics prove it all. And again, as normal, you're ignoring them.

Gonzalez averages about 50 RBIs a year..it looks like Keppinger will far surpass this

In the same amount of at-bats, Keppinger is averaging 48 RBIs, whilst Gonzalez is averaging 55.

I am not saying that I don't like Keppinger, because I do. You're just wrong about that statement.

at 11:42 AM Blogger buckeyefan said...

As far as a different lineup in the near future... because of contract obligations I think a more realistic lineup would be...

Freel LF *
Keppinger RF
Votto 1b
Phillips 2b
EE 3b
Bruce CF
A Gonzo SS *

* - under contract and too expensive to move

This lineup would have speed with some pop. The kind of team Jocketty put together in St. Louis.

Note...I would move Kep to the outfield not EE. Kep has outfield experience...EE is adequate at third... I would prefer Kep at short, but A Gonz (and contract)if healthy will have to play somewhere.

Of course keep the young pitching !


Kiss Dunn & Griffey good bye...their price verses return does not make sense... so get what you can (prospects)if you can.

Take the money saved(Dunn & Grifey)and go after pitching, pitching, pitching !!!! Spend some of that on getting Aaroyo an opperation!

at 12:09 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Dave Kingsmans lifetime batting average and yearly RBIs look strikingly similar to Adam Dunn

Kingman was a better fielder

ty JAB

at 12:22 PM OpenID alphatheta678 said...

Dave Kingman's career OBP was .302, to compare Dunn to him is borderline insane. It took me about 15 seconds to look that up. Do a little research before making misleading (at best) statements.

at 12:28 PM Blogger jdeezman said...

It's amazing that anyone who has even the cognitive abilities of a dead starfish can't see that Keppinger is average in the field with a good bat.
He has not been/is not/will not be an everday SS in the major leagues.
We need better fielder with more range at SS, and except for last years aberration, Gonzo was/is/will be better.
The only reason Kepp is starting is due to injury.

Did any of you Kepp manlovers even hear that Dusty sat him on Wednesday because he was worried about Kepp's health?
He was worried about the weight loss that Kepp's had so far this year... and if he is wearing down after 48 games, he's not going to last the year.
Kepp is a good guy, great utility man with a good bat.
Compression fractures DO heal, it all depends on the individual. It does take a long time to fully heal though.

To quote a certain poster;
"What is, is".

at 12:38 PM Blogger Adam said...


You say the team is poorly put together. I'd like to hear what you would have done to change this and what you feel Wayne messed up on to make this team so poorly put together.

The way I see it is:
SP: Harang, Cueto and Volquez are a solid 1-3. It's not WK's fault Arroyo is terrible this year, is it? I think we all know that while he declined last year, if he were hitting those numbers, we'd be in much better shape.

Offense: Is it also Wayne's fault that Dunn is not producing? Keppinger is filling in very well, Freel is actually hitting well and should play full time after they rid themselves of some other players. Encarnacion is still developing. Phillips is a bit off. Bako is hitting extremely well. Votto is hitting well. Griffey is nothing special and needs to be moved.

Team ERA is middle of the pack to the end of the pack in the NL.

What is key here is if the team decides to build or dismantle - or somehow a combination of both. As mentioned, I would love to see them dish some ML talent off they don't need for minor leaguers, but also trade some prospects for a guy like Blanton, if he becomes available. In 9 starts, he's averaging just about 7 innings. He's at a 3.82 ERA and for those of you who love the WL record and say: "But adam, he's only 2-5". I will say, look at the scorese of his games:

He notoriously does NOT get run support.

From last year, I found this:
"It was the 25th time in 77 career starts that Blanton has received no more than one run of support. He's 1-22 in those starts, with the lone win in a shutout against the Minnesota Twins last week". - From June 8th 2007 - Susan Slusser game notes

The guy just doesn't get run support. He'd be a pitcher that would be terrific as an anchor to Harang, Cueto and Volquez (and hopefully arroyo if he gets it together).

at 12:43 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

Jack, your logic worked somewhat when Keppinger was hitting 330. Now that his OBP is 330, the same as Gonzales, your case is gone. AGon produced more runs than Kepp last year, and despite his average, Kepp is not producing RUNS any better this year. He also leads the team in DP's, not made, hit in to.

No matter how many times you say it, Keppinger is not Barry Larkin or Dave Concepcion. AGon has turned 100 DP's and like those others has a WS ring.

IF he is out for the year, we do need a shortstop, and yes Juan Castro is a Better Shortstop than Kepp

at 1:00 PM Blogger Arden Dulou said...

I go to sleep and work and I see what happens.

Dunn can be better than he is but he is starting to play a lot like Kingman. Not that it is a bad thing. There is always a spot on a team for a guy like that. Just not in the #4 spot and not for the big money either.

Dunn could be great. He showed in the minors he could hit for average and powerand hit to all fields . For whatever reason, that Dunn has disappeared. Could Kingman have gotten better, I don't know. All I can see from the evidence at hand is Dunn is playing down to Kingman's stat level. If don't pay 13mil for Kingman you don't for Dunn.

at 1:19 PM Blogger Red Faced said...

CoachD178, I liked your comments on Dunn. I feel the same about him and feel that he'd excell if he were on a team that he could easily settle in at with that type of role. Unfortunately the current Reds team isn't one that's put together to allow him to do that. Out of all the free agents we have I struggle most with the Dunn descision but I think it comes down to what we could get for him, what kind of money would it take to keep him, and lastly what other pieces can we fill around him. If all these things work out and we are able to put Dunn into that role of which you speak then that would be good I just don't know if this team will be able to do that.

at 1:50 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

Kevin, with the lack of catching available in MLB, I think we need to see Mesoraco for a few years. You do not often hear of 5 tool catchers. Dale Murphy was one.

rossaroni. We should figure out what it is we want from a Shortstop. 150 games and 100 Double Plays 2 years in a row would place Ramirez with Larkin and Davey.

Last year Gonzales had 73 DP's in 100 games.

Keppinger had 27 in 47 games

This year Keppinger has 12 in 33 games. And he is tired. He has never played a full year, let alone at SS.

People can say that Kepp is a great shortstop, but he is tracking right now for 54 Double plays at 150 games.

Just ask Johnny and Edinson if they are interested in an additional 50 Double plays

at 2:12 PM Blogger Phill said...

There's a lot of things I'd like to point out but I figure it'll be lost.

Save money and go after pitching. Here is a list of the current to-be free agent relievers for 2009 with their age next to them(list taken from mlbtraderumurs.com):

Jeremy Affeldt (30)
Doug Brocail (42) - club option for '09
Shawn Chacon (31)
Juan Cruz (28)
Alan Embree (39) - $3MM club option for '09
Scott Eyre (37)
Kyle Farnsworth (33)
Keith Foulke (35)
Aaron Fultz (35)
Tom Gordon (41) - $4.5MM club option for '09 with a $1MM buyout
Eddie Guardado (38)
LaTroy Hawkins (36)
Matt Herges (39) - club option for '09
Bob Howry (35)
Steve Kline (36)
Damaso Marte (34) - $6MM club option for '09 with a $0.25MM buyout
Trever Miller (36) - $2MM club option for '09 with a $0.4MM buyout
Guillermo Mota (35)
Will Ohman (31)
Darren Oliver (38)
Dennys Reyes (32)
Juan Rincon (30)
Russ Springer (40)
Mike Stanton (42)
Mike Timlin (43)
Salomon Torres (37) - $3.75MM club option for '09 with a $0.3MM buyout
David Weathers (39)
Dan Wheeler (31)
Matt Wise (33)
Kerry Wood (32)

So we're going to dump salary to spend it on 30-40 year old pitchers? The same thing everyone on here has complained about when Krivsky did it?

at 2:29 PM Blogger C. Fisch said...

To all of the Griffey haters ( who were missing in the winter of 99) here are some numbers for comparison of other “overpaid” big bats in baseball. Stats are from 2005 through today according to mlb.com and lohud.com. Name, 2008 base salary,Games,HR,RBI: Griffey $8.2M, 415, 96, 272, C. Delgado $16M, 458, 99, 332, T. Glaus $12.5M, 452, 96, 284, T. Helton $16.6M, 477, 55, 263, C. Beltran $18.6M, 467, 92, 319, J. Thome $15.6M, 365, 90, 255, P. Burrell $14.25M, 488, 100, 339, M. Teixeira $12.5M, 489, 110,378
There are many other examples, don’t have time to add up numbers on everybody to prove that you get the run production that you are paying for, maybe even getting a deal.
Here are some other salaries: J. Damon (not a big bat, big name) $13M, A. Jones $14.7M, G. Sheffield $13.3M, B. Abreu $16M, A. Ramirez $15M, S. Rolen $11.6 M. I would think about picking up the option for 2009. Now Dunn on the other hand!........................

at 2:31 PM Blogger C. Fisch said...

To all of the Griffey haters ( who were missing in the winter of 99) here are some numbers for comparison of other “overpaid” big bats in baseball. Stats are from 2005 through today according to mlb.com and lohud.com. Name, 2008 base salary,Games,HR,RBI: Griffey $8.2M, 415, 96, 272, C. Delgado $16M, 458, 99, 332, T. Glaus $12.5M, 452, 96, 284, T. Helton $16.6M, 477, 55, 263, C. Beltran $18.6M, 467, 92, 319, J. Thome $15.6M, 365, 90, 255, P. Burrell $14.25M, 488, 100, 339, M. Teixeira $12.5M, 489, 110,378
There are many other examples, don’t have time to add up numbers on everybody to prove that you get the run production that you are paying for, maybe even getting a deal.
Here are some other salaries: J. Damon (not a big bat, big name) $13M, A. Jones $14.7M, G. Sheffield $13.3M, B. Abreu $16M, A. Ramirez $15M, S. Rolen $11.6 M. I would think about picking up the option for 2009. Now Dunn on the other hand!........................

at 2:33 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

The way I see it is:
SP: Harang, Cueto and Volquez are a solid 1-3. It's not WK's fault Arroyo is terrible this year, is it? I think we all know that while he declined last year, if he were hitting those numbers, we'd be in much better shape.

Offense: Is it also Wayne's fault that Dunn is not producing? Keppinger is filling in very well, Freel is actually hitting well and should play full time after they rid themselves of some other players. Encarnacion is still developing. Phillips is a bit off. Bako is hitting extremely well. Votto is hitting well. Griffey is nothing special and needs to be moved.

actually Adam it is WKs fault and this is why he was fired

Keppinger was rested by Baker because he had played in almost everygame

Keppinger is one of the NL leaders in fielding

Keppinger, Votto and Volquez are the only three bright spots on this team..so far

at 2:36 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Brandon Larson hit in the minor leagues..so what..Dunn is what he is..pretty awful

maybe the opportunity for double plays this year is less.. Keppinger has as much range, he hits better, he makes less errors..

Juan Castro for SS


at 2:53 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

Jack, you said the same thing over the winter about Kepp last year, that somehow the opportunities were less when Keppinger was in there.

The Opportunities are less BECAUSE Keppinger is in there. He does NOT turn the DP well, and has an average arm.

Phillips had 113 DP's last year. He is WAY OFF that pace this year.

What is different?

Don't settle for average shortstop play Jack and try to tell us it is a pony. We want to put the best team on the field, Gonzales is the starter, Keppinger is a reserve utility guy who can help us in many positions, and I hope to see them both playing soon as it makes us a better team.

Keppinger is NOT a Major League Shortstop. Please don't try to sell us that he is one

at 2:57 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

compression fractures anywhere can be career ending

good chance Gonzo does not play for quite a while

my sources tell me there is deep concern about his return

I watched that fight last night..it was sad to see Hamilton in that Texas uniform

at 3:19 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Keppinger is NOT a Major League Shortstop. Please don't try to sell us that he is one

Keppinger is the starting ss of the Cincinnati Reds.

Hes hitting a solid 300 and is one of the league leaders in fielding percentage

at 3:45 PM Blogger robdicken said...

The best way to get a buffoon to leave...ignore him (and he's three different IDs). So with that said...just ignore Jack's stupidity. He's here for nothing more than comical relief.


"Dunn is what he is...pretty awful"

Stats! They are a wonderful thing!! 40+ homers 4 years in a row and 100 RBIs in 3 of those years...not easy to come by.

Quit huffing the school glue!

at 4:12 PM Blogger Adam said...


The fact you are saying it's WK's fault that Dunn can't hit and arroyo can't pitch, really makes no sense.

It's not the GM's fault they aren't hitting and pitching. If that's the case, Dusty Baker and the entire coaching staff should be traded right now.

We all know that WK was NOT fired because of the team not performing. They used that as an excuse SO they could bring Jocketty in to fill the position, which he essentially was brought in to do when he was hired. It was a waiting game. I thought the organization would be a bit more classy and fire WK at the end of the year. To tell your fans that "we are tired of the losing and we are going to make changes" after 23 games is not only lame, but it's an excuse that only the ill informed fan will buy. Don't fool yourself. If they are going to make "big changes" (the big changes that should have occurred over the last 8 years) they would have been done. Sure, they can do it now, but it's late. Which is why I laughed when I heard the reasoning for Wayne's firing. It's just sad and disgusting.

Okay, now that I know that the management and coaching staff is responsible for the performance of players, I am on a "Fire Dusty Baker" campaign. I want to see "real" changes. Make it happen.

This organization will never pass the mediocrity they are in until they actually really make REAL changes. Jocketty has a chance to do that now - I hope he can pull it off.

at 4:35 PM Blogger reaganspad said...

you are right jack. He is starting because of an injury.

Brandon Phillips had 114 DP's last year, most of them with AGon. Keppinger is tracking for about half that, 55 Double Plays.

I know you don't see a problem with that as long as his fielding percentage is reallllly high.

Getting ONE out on a double play does not count against your fielding percentage, but it does kill the teams winning percentage, which you know something about for the past 7 years

I like his bat, he is a nice player. But I really hope that AGon knee is better than what you referred to. We need all our starters to play our best

at 6:00 PM Blogger JackBlueAsh said...

Adam..the team got worse last year and was even regressing this year

personally i feel bad for WK..but was it his fault..absolutely

at 4:13 AM Blogger Brian said...

A few things to ponder...

Career numbers..

Keppinger Gonzales
.305 BA .248 BA
.360 OBP .295 OBP
.428 SLG .399 SLG
.787 OPS .699 OPS

1.38/1 BB/K .27/1 BB/K

.987 FP .969 FP

And it is much easier to drive in runs lower in the order, especially when Patterson has an OPS of .260 hitting in front of Keppinger.

One other thing to take into consideration about the lack of double plays. The starting pitching is striking out more batters per game than last year.

2007 6.44 K/9
2008 8.36 K/9

at 4:02 PM Blogger Matt said...

McBeth is a non-factor. Quit saying his name until he shows something. But I think there are many guys that are showing something, Manuel is the biggest so far. I'm pulling for Herrera because betting against him in the past has been unwise.

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