It’s nice to see someone is optimistic about the Reds. Jeff Erickson recently took a look at some of the things that could go right for the Reds, and in the event they all do, may push them into contention. He discusses everything from Homer Bailey finding his place on the team to Adam Dunn finding his way back to the numbers he hit back in 2004. He also touches on some of the things that could go wrong with the rest of the teams in the division that could help the Reds out. Nice read.
By Thaq Diesel
Yes, the Mercker who had Tommy John surgery two days after Guardado. I hate to sound catty, but these kinds of innuendos / deals make me feel like my favorite baseball team is a junk dealer – finding things in the pile that others have discarded and seeing if there is any use out of them. If that’s how it’s going to be, I guess we should embrace it. Perhaps the front office should synch it up with their marketing programs: “First thousand fans in attendance get a free shopping cart…”
“All Right You Big Dummy…” – Griffey finally came clean and said that he was playing with his kids when he injured his wrist. He’s probably just one of those accident prone people in life. As for why Griffey is injured so much, it could be his body finally breaking down with age, it could be that he lives life on the edge, or it could be that Tiki statue he picked up in Hawaii, when he was there with his brothers Peter, Bobby and Greg. Regardless, it shouldn’t be a surprise anymore and certainly must figure into the calculus the Reds front office makes in determining staffing for their outfield.
Reds ace (yes, I’m going to use that word) Aaron Harang was recently profiled at Baseball Prospectus. You’ve got everything from his path to the majors to his last two seasons, which have been quite exceptional. Good stuff and a worthwhile read.
The Reds have not one, but two prospects in Kevin Goldstein’s Top 100 prospect list. Coming in at number four is the pitching phenom Homer Bailey. He comes in right behind Phillip Hughes as the second best pitcher on the list and he’ll be one of the big stories of spring training.
Number nine is outfielder Jay Bruce. Also making the list are Joey Votto at 53. Two in the top ten isn’t too shabby though. The only other team to do it was the Devil Rays who had Delmon Young at three and Evan Longoria at ten.
By Thaq Deisel
Griffey has been mum on the subject, refusing to answer questions about it. No word from the Reds either, but you assume they know. I speculate that how he broke his hand is either embarassing or a violation of his contract. My theories:
I have no clue. It must be odd enough that he is keeping it quiet.
Ken Griffey, Jr. says he’s ready to go after breaking his throwing hand. Of course he’s not a doctor so we’ll see what ends up happening. It’s also been revealed that he broke the hand while wrestling with his sons.
Apparantly, they’re also looking for Griffey to spend some time in right field, and he was rather noncommital about the rumor. This should be a really interesting spring.
In NBCsports.com Reds preseason preview, I think the key addition and key loss says it all. When your biggest addition is slappy Alex Gonzalez, and when the key loss is Rich Aurilia, it pretty much means we get more of the same in 2007. The Reds will hit the ball well enough (even without Austin Kearns), but once you get past Bronson Arroyo and Aaron Harang, the pitching gets pretty spotty. The Reds could add one to that in Homer Bailey, but you really have to be careful in rushing the kid.
My opinion is, the Reds will lose close to 90 so you’re better off keeping the kid down in Triple A. I don’t think the pen is as good as the preseason report says, but it won’t be a glaring weakness like it has in years past so it won’t be talked about as much. Oh yeah, and Adam Dunn is finally going to hit 50 homeruns. He’s two short of 200 career dingers and I think he’ll not only top that mark, but 250 as well.
And to add to your reading pleasure, here’s a nice analysis of the Bronson Arroyo and Aaron Harang signings. Good stuff here.
By Thaq Diesel
I can’t remember the last time the Reds had two good-to-great pitchers in their starting rotation – was it Rijo / Browning? In today’s MLB, you lock up the good ones when you find them. Arroyo and Harang are both durable, they rarely lay an egg in a start and are relatively young (29 and 28, respectively). If you’re going to spend money, signing these two (early and before arbitration can really tick them off) makes a ton of sense. You feel like a good foundation is set for this team – adding just a couple of the right pieces can make Cincinnati a) get a winning season this year and b) contend for the playoffs.
Krivsky has acquired 36 players since he joined the Reds last year. That’s mind boggling. He’s shown the right mix of frugality (the spate of middle-tier pitchers he’s thrown in the bullpen) and spending (signing Arroyo and Harang). He’s a pretty savvy dude.
We all know how much I like Adam Dunn. Chicks dig the long ball, and so do I and Adam Dunn is a franchise player. He’s already done more in the past three years then a lot of Reds have ever done and it would be a travesty if the Reds didn’t lock Dunn up to a long term deal.
Now, you can get all of the Adam Dunn you’d ever want in a fantastic player profile over at Baseball Prospectus. Very good stuff and it just proves the point I’ve been trying to make the past couple of years. Adam Dunn is a stud.
By Thaq Diesel
It’s good to have Harang into the fold. He pitched a ton of innings last year, struck out a lot of people and was a pretty consistent performer in the gopher ball home stadium we call Great American Ballpark.
The Reds did a common sense thing and signed Harang to big money – money that, in today’s baseball economics, still looks like a bargain. Harang deserves the big money no matter what happens from here out. It’s probably safe to say that had arbitration determined Harang’s salary for next year, he wouldn’t have re-signed with Cincinnati. It’s tough to bust hump for less money and not be bitter. They get Harang for four more years and can pay him more if they want to should he improve on his past form.
So, that kept the Reds in place, like every other deal this season. What’s going to break the logjam?