Encarnacion’s continued development could go a long way toward determining who plays where.

Narron said the 23-year-old will need to play well to earn a spot on the club out of Spring Training.

Holy crap! He’s gone from fighting for PT to having to play well to even make the team. In what “BizzaroWorld” does this make any sense at all? Just looks like another example of the Reds “old school” baseball thinking….a mediocre vet is always better than an up and coming young player.

He plans to pair Encarnacion with new Reds bench coach Bucky Dent, who was a big-league infielder for 12 seasons.

Dent, 53, spent the past three seasons managing the Yankees Triple-A affiliate Columbus Clippers.

“He’s going to work with Eddie a lot in the spring,” Narron said. “Bucky’s outstanding. He’s been around a lot of good baseball people and baseball instructors.”

9 Responses

  1. Chris

    That’s your team, fans. Proven medicrities? We’ll bend over backward to find them playing time, especially if they bitch and moan. Rising talent? We’ll find a way to F it up. AND blame it on them!

  2. Jim McCullough

    I’m sure EE’s Winter League performance has become a factor.

    Amazing that EE has nothing left to prove at AAA and we refuse to try and develop him at this level.

  3. DevilsAdvocate

    I think Narron must have meant “starting spot” rather than just “roster spot.” That would have been too quick an about-face from his previous comments to make sense. And even that…it’s beyond imagination that Womack could start anywhere while Encarnacion sits.

    That said, if they were to put Encarnacion on the roster as the 25th man instead of everyday 3rd baseman, wouldn’t that be worse than sending him back to AAA? I’d much rather he start everyday somewhere rather than rot on the bench with 2 pinch-hit appearances per week in the majors.

    Unfortunate that we have to even consider such a possibility. 😡

  4. Blue

    Chris, I’ll respond to what you said on the other thread here. I think the difference is that the Reds doubted Lopez would ever be the team’s shortstop. His numbers had been pretty poor the entire time that he had been with the Reds organization. I don’t have any reason to believe that the Reds don’t think EE will be a good player. Of course, you could say that Aurila was well past his prime and hadn’t put up good numbers for a while. I won’t dispute that, but I still think that Lopez and EE are different with respect to how the Reds view them.

  5. Blue

    Also, here are two quotes – QUOTES – one from Jerry Narron and one from Dan O’Brien. Everything I’ve seen that people use to say that Aurilia will take EE’s spot has been a writer telling us what they said without using their own words. THESE ARE THINGS THEY HAVE SAID:

    Narron- “Any time you have multiple-position guys, it’s a big help,” said Narron. “Richie did a nice job for us in a lot of different roles. We look for him to do the same thing for us this season.”

    O’Brien- “I have no doubt he’ll continue to take quality at-bats and fill in at multiple positions around the infield,” O’Brien said. “Jerry is confident that Rich will get at-bats in that role.”

  6. Chris


    1. I disagree with your recollection about Lopez, circa 2005. The Reds constantly said that he was the shortstop of the future. They let Larkin go, for goodness sakes. It was just inexplicable that they put Aurilia in there ahead of him. Both hit well in spring training, but they wish-casted that Aurilia would return to late-90s form.

    2. Those are accurate quotes, but they’re not ALL the quotes. Yesterday’s post from Chad had this quote from Narron, which directly addresses the situation:

    “It would be awesome to see him come into spring training, start the year and play outstanding. That’s what we’re hoping for, and if he does that, he doesn’t have to worry about playing. But having Richie back gives us an alternative, and Eddie’s going to have to play well to go out there and play every day.”

    So Encar has the job to lose, but Aurilia is waiting over his shoulder if he has a slow start (or spring, presumably).

  7. Blue

    I just don’t want it to be a chirade, where EE is put in to start the season, and they look for a reason to take him out and put Aurilia in. I don’t think we’re being set up for that.

  8. The Mad Hatter

    I have seen it before and I guess I will see it again. Aurilia will be starting at 3b by May 1st and EE will be starting at 3rd in AAA. This team is becoming my own little nightmare.

  9. EricTW

    As I’ve said before, I don’t have any problem with Aurilia pushing Edwin at 3rd base. It sure seemed to work for Lopez.

    I’ve heard nothing but EE being the 3rd baseman of the future for a while now, so I highly doubt that they’re anywhere close to giving up on him.