Tagged: trade

Queen City Stupidness

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In my last entry I said
that Cincinnati had the worst management in baseball.  And the Reds’ latest move (or lack there of) has convinced me I
am totally…….right.  First of all, the Griffey
trade
was a good one for the Reds. 
To give up an old veteran who frankly was not very good anymore, was
smart.  Danny Richar
doesn’t excite me very much, but Nick Masset
was a good acquisition just because he’s a young pitcher.  Looking at it from a Reds standpoint, all you
have to say is “young pitcher” and it is a good acquisition.  

 

But the move I am
referring to in the beginning of the entry is a direct result from the Griffey
trade.  After the trade, Adam Dunn
and Jay Bruce were the only outfielders left on the team that were bona-fide
starters.  Ryan Freel and Norris Hopper
were both injured.  Jerry Hairston
Jr.
(below) was thought to have the starting job in center field for two
reasons.  1) Jay Bruce would move over
to right field, where he will e
nd up eventually anyway 2) Hairston was having a
career season with t
he bat.  

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I wont argue that
Hairston is h
aving a great year.  So far
he’s had a .393 OBP with three home runs and twenty-two RBI in 58 games. 

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But I don’t think Hairston should be the
starting center fielder.  Why do I think
a guy who’s having such a great year be on the bench?   The Reds season has been so bad, every decision made from now on
should be in the interest of the future. 
With that in mind, Chris
Dickerson
(right) should get called up from Triple-A Louisville and be the Reds’
starting center fielder.

Jerry Hairston is 32 years
old, while Dickerson is only 26 years old. 
Hairston has always been a utility guy who can play the infield and
outfield and could and should continue that role.  Dickerson is the only legitimate outfield prospect in the system
besides Drew Stubbs.   As I said before,
Hairston could still help out the club by playing second base, shortstop, third
base, left field, and occasionally center field. 

 

Dickerson is having a
great season in AAA.  Here his
statistics:

G     .OBP      AB          H      HR      RBI     BB      SO     SB      SLG      OPS

94   .385     336     62    96     11       53      53       99     26     .479      .864

 

Those numbers are too good
for him to stay in AAA.  The Reds need
to build for the future, therefore they need to let Chris Dickerson play in the
majors.

 

But I unfortunately doubt
Jocketty (Reds GM) will do I what I suggest because he’s well, I don’t want to say he’s
dumb, but he is. 

 

By the way, what is Corey
Patterson
(below) doing in the majors?  He
has a .221 OBP!   He’s the ultimate
anti-Moneyball
player.  He never walks, and tries to
hit a home run every at-bat. 

patterson.jpg

He
intrigues a lot of GMs just by his potential and speed.  But Patterson is 29 years old and I think I
can confidently say that you can say goodbye of any chance of him reaching his
“potential”.  He’s a bad player, nothing
personal but it’s true, and to think he’s the one starting in center field
while Hairston is recovering from his injury is staggering.  The Reds really need to take a different
perspective on running the team.  Out of
all the baseball fans, I think Reds fans have the most right to be
unhappy.  Even more unhappy then Oriole
fans, but that’s something everyone in Baltimore will deny.  I think there is no doubt though, who has
the nicer ballpark.  Reds or Orioles?  Come on O’s fans, you know which one is
nicer.  As for Pirate fans, I could
never be angry with management because I don’t think there is any instance in
professional sports where the nicest venue in the league
has the third
lowest average ticket price
.  It’s
truly remarkable and almost sad.

 

If I really need to
convince everyone reading this blog that Cincinnati’s front office is in
shambles, take a look at this
article.  Yes it’s true.  I’m sorry for all the Red fans out there,
but it’s not some cruel joke.  Watch this
video.  Bavasi was so bad as GM of the
M’s, that Mariners beat writer Jim Street forgot to mention the Richie
Sexson signing
.  How bad does a GM
have to be for a beat writer to neglect to mention the Sexson deal
when going through all the bad moves Bavasi made during his stint?  Really Mr. Jocketty?  The only way the Reds front office could get
worse is if Walt hires Dave Littlefield or Tim Purpura.  It wouldn’t even be funny if mentioned the
possibility of Jocketty hiring Jim
Duquette
.

 

The Reds also recently
designated David
Ross
(pictured) for assignment. 

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He was the
Reds’ starting catcher for the last two seasons, and had a really good year in
2006 for them.  Here’s what he did: 90
games: .353 OBP, 20 HR, 52 RBI, .579 SLG. 
But in 2007 he was atrocious with a .271 OBP and 17 home runs in 117
games.   For Ross, this year was sort of
ying-yang.  He had a .381 OBP but only
hit 3 homers.  He was going to be on
pace for only 9 homers this season. 
Yet, he still was the best catcher on the Reds, way better than Javier
Valentin
and Paul
Bako
.  I could see how Bako could
help the young pitchers on the team, but Valentin was having a horrible year
with a .294 OBP and one home run.  Why
would the Reds let go of the best catcher on their team and keep their third
string catcher who’s older than Ross and is having a horrible year with the
stick.  It doesn’t make sense,
especially when you look at Ross’s high percentage of throwing out would-be
base stealers.  

 

I do however like the
player the Reds called up from Triple-A. 
Ryan
Hanigan
was really swinging the bat well in Louisville and carried a .392
OBP.  He’s not a power hitter at all; in
75 games this season he’s only hit four dingers, and has 18 career home runs in
549 career minor league games.  He appeared in 10 games with the club in September last year, but is a pretty old rookie at
28.  That being said, I don’t see how the Reds’ expectations for Hanigan can be any higher than what Ross did this year.  I just don’t get why the Reds have
three catchers, especially in the NL, and why Javier Valentin is one of those
three, while David Ross is not.

 

Here’s some more
unfairness.  Homer Bailey was
sent down on Sunday.  But that is not
what’s unfair.  Sending Bailey down was
the right move.  He simply couldn’t put
it together at the majors, and hopefully the minors will help him regain his
form.  The part about this that is
unfair is that Josh
Fogg
will replace Bailey in the rotation. 
I have know logical guess as to why Fogg is in the rotation, and Ramon
Ramirez
is still in AAA.  Fogg is 31
years old, but he’s definitely not a part of the Reds’ long-term plan.  Ramirez is already 25 years old, so it’s
time he gets a chance to pitch in with the Reds.  He has a 3.35 ERA this year in AAA, and 1.98 ERA in his last 7
starts.  Why Fogg (who is 2-4 with a
7.98 ERA) is with Cincinnati, but Ramirez isn’t befuddles me.  

 

Another less-publicized
prospect the Reds have is Josh Roenicke. 
He’s in Triple-A at the moment and is plowing down hitters there.  He wields a .227 BAA, and a 2.40 ERA.  I think he’s ready for majors right now, and
he’s already 26, but the Cincinnati bullpen doesn’t have any odd man out at
this point:

Francisco Cordero: 53
games – 3.86 ERA – 22 SV (28 Opp) – 32 years old

David Weathers: 53 games –
3.35 ERA – 38 years old

Jeremy Affeldt: 60 games –
3.67 ERA – 29 years old

Mike Lincoln: 45 games –
3.51 ERA – 32 years old

Bill Bray: 46 games – 2.77
ERA – 25 years old

Gary Majewski: 24 games –
4.66 ERA – 28 years old

Nick Masset: 36 games –
4.30 ERA – 26 years old

 

Gary Majewski is obviously
the weakest link in the pen, but he is still is a good pitcher who bodes well
for the future and the Reds shouldn’t send him down again.  I guess it couldn’t hurt if Roenicke could
put more innings under his belt in Triple-A but he’s a large part of the future and
is another reason why the Reds need to trade David Weathers this
off-season.  He’s too valuable of a
player to be wasting away in Cincy.  A
contending team like the Cardinals would love to have Weathers in their pen
right now.

 

The bottom line is the Reds are a bad team
and they need to get younger and continue to rebuild.  They can’t stop at Cueto, Volquez, Bruce and Votto.  They still need to get better and younger.  Their farm system is in bad condition
despite what it’s pumped out the past two years.   


This last little thing
doesn’t have anything to do with the Reds, but I’ll say it anyways.  Didn’t any team notice what Carlos
Rivera
(below) did in the Mexican League last year?  I know it’s the Mexican League but at some point the
numbers start to have meaning.  Take a
look at these things of beauty:

G       OBP      AB       R      H      HR      RBI      BB      SO      SB      SLG      OPS

101   .511     361     75   148    16       73        70      63       3      .615    1.126

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As a GM, wouldn’t you just
take a chance on him, and see what he could do in affiliated baseball
again.  Obviously, Rivera was in
affiliated ball for 11 seasons
until 2007 and didn’t put up those same numbers, but those numbers above are
just so good, it’s tempting to pick him up for a very low price tag and
see what he can do.  He’s still a free
agent and is 30 years old.  Talk about
potential though.

 

Finally to put the
finishing touches on my entry, here’s a “Phunny Photo”.  I know that was lame.  If you have seen it before (it’s fairly
popular) my apologies:

 

“Those Rich Yankee Fans and Their Fancy Seats”
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Gruddie Not Traded?

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Mark
Grudzielanek, like Guzman and Sherrill, should have been traded at the deadline this year.   Gruddie is 38 years old and probably
will be retired by the time the Royals are at a championship level.   I predict it will take around four years,
at least, for the Royals to be a really good team. 

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Grudzielanek will be 42 years old at that time.  My point is, Grudzielanek will never help
the Royals win anything big, so it made all the sense in the world to trade
him to a team that could use a veteran infielder with a bunch of
experience.  Do I think Mark is really
good enough to be a starting second baseman on a championship team?  No. 
He has little pop (3 HR this season) and little speed (2 SB), but he
does have a fairly good .356 OBP, and is great with the glove.  I could have seen him being a nice pick up for
the Rays or White Sox. 

 

The
White Sox only have Juan Uribe as a backup infielder.  They desperately need an upgrade.  His power is way down; he makes too many errors and has a dismal OBP of .285.  

 

The
Rays also would have benefited from acquiring Grudzielanek.  The person now serving as the primary backup at second base is
Willy Aybar, but he’s having a bad year at the plate, and is a natural third
baseman.  The Rays have a lot of guys
that could fill the role, like Elliot Johnson and Ben Zobrist, but they have
done little with the bat and have no postseason experience.  With the Rays competing for a playoff spot,
Grudzielanek could be a valuable infielder and a solid pinch hitter. 

 

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The
Royals can’t ask for too much in return for a 38 year old second baseman,
especially if the team that acquires him will use him as a back up.  In any case, the Royals should ask for a
prospect or two.  In would make sense
for the Royals to ask for a second base or pitching prospect in return. 

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Esteban German would likely fill the role
that Grudzielanek left behind, but with the season German is having, when
Alberto Callaspo comes off the DL, I would assume that he would be the starter
at second.  The thought that Mike Aviles
could move over to second base to allow Tony Pena (pictured) to start at short is
bonkers.  Pena has NO power, and has an
.OBP of .174.  That’s horrible for a
pitcher, let alone a potential starting position player.  Defense can only do so much.   I wish I could say that defense and speed
mean just as much as pure hitting, but they don’t.  Not even close.  

 

Nationals Moves

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     The
Jon Rauch for Emilio Bonifacio trade shocks me.   When I heard that the Nationals acquired Bonifacio for Rauch, I
was like “Okay, well they got some prospects, that makes sense”.  

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Then I realized Bonifacio was the only
player the Nats got!  I didn’t need to
look at player pages or statistics.  I
instantly knew that this deal was horrible for the Nationals.

 

I
knew who Bonifacio was, and obviously I knew all about Rauch.  Bowden said this about the trade, “This
trade brings us a quality, young player, who has the potential to develop into
a solid leadoff hitter and outstanding defensive second baseman,” This is what
the Nationals.com beat writer Bill Ladson said in his article about the trade,

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Bonifacio
is viewed as having all of the tools necessary to hit leadoff in the big
leagues

 

I
double-checked Bonifacio’s numbers and what I saw didn’t say “future leadoff
hitter” like what Jim Bowden and Bill Ladson said. 

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Rather, the numbers I saw said “solid utility infielder in two
years”.  A .339 career OBP in the
minors?   12 home runs in 648
games?  That’s not a starter in the
major leagues.  Even if his OBP was
higher and had some more pop, it still would not be a good deal.  Rauch is still too good for an average
second-baseman.

 

Take
a look at
Rauch’s numbers and Bonifacio’s numbers.  Fair trade?  No way.    Rauch could have fetched a package like
Joe Blanton.  But Adrian Cardenas, by
himself, is better than Bonifacio.

 

I
don’t mean to sound like I hate Bonifacio as a player, but I think it is ridiculous
that Bonifacio was all the Nats could get for Rauch.   Bowden screwed up big time.  

 

Meanwhile,
the Nationals agreed to a two-year contract extension with Christian
Guzman.   It’s hard to judge whether
this deal is good or bad. 

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It’s a good
deal if it was meant to increase the trade value of Guzman, because the Nats
will get way more players if the team that acquires him will have him for
another two years.

 

This
is a bad deal if it is actually meant to have Guzman stay in Washington for
another two years.  Sure, Guzman may
help the Nats win some more games in the next two years, but who cares exactly
how many games the Nats win the next two years if it is clear they are not
going to be a contending team until at least four seasons. 

 

Guzman
is at the absolute peak of his trade value after this signing because he is 30
years old now.  Any team that acquires
him will have his contract run out right as Guzman’s career starts going down
hill.


Two bad moves by the Nationals, unless they trade Christan Guzman.   Guzman is a seriously overated player, who in my mind, barely is good enought to be a starter.  I know he’s an All-star, and leads the National League in hits, but he has a .333 OBP, and only 5 home runs.  Guzman has only drawn  a measly 17 walks all season.  I really don’t care about walks,  as long as yoou have a good .OBP, but need to have an awful amount of hits for you to have an exceptable .OBP.