Wayne Krivsky stated ‘we didn’t think moving him in the middle of a season was fair to him’ when asked in an interview about moving Brandon Phillips to SS shortly after the abysmal Kearn/Lopez trade.

I can’t understand why the Reds would think this. My guess would be that Phillips has played as many games at SS in his career than he has at 2B coming up through the minors, even though he has played 2B in nearly all of his major league time. It would probably take all of two series for him to get comfortable back over there.

Phillips would be a huge upgrade defensively over Clayton at SS, and I don’t even need to mention the offensive upgrade he would be over Clayton/Castro. This would open up second base for Aurilia full time. He has less range, but is surehanded. It would get Encarnacion’s bat back in the lineup helping to make up for the offense lost in the Kearns/Lopez trade.

Even if they are dead set against Encarnacion’s glove being in the lineup, they could leave Aurilia at 3B and play Freel at 2B. Denorfia is still a huge offensive upgrade over Clayton/Castro if they go that route.

I can’t see any drawbacks to moving Phillips over to SS right away, and it is painstakingly obvious he is the only in house solution for that position who can swing the bat.

Why are they waiting?


13 Responses

  1. Dan Dumoulin

    I know many of you probably find history boring, but the beauty of baseball is the common thread that runs through 135 summers of pro ball in America… When I look at the Reds position players, I can’t help but remember the problems that Tony Perez encountered at Third Base early in his career. Yes, some of you may not realize this, but Tony Perez was originally the Reds third baseman when he came to the Bigs. Tony took off when he was moved to first base, of course. Anybody see the similarities with Eddie Encarnacion? I sure do. I was in agreement with keeping Hatteberg around.. a solid baseball player.. but moving Eddie to first, Phillips to SS, and giving Olmedo a shot at the 2B job are all Spring Training moves that I think this team will make. They won’t all work out, but EE at 1B and BP at SS make a lot of sense. Freel is a fall back at 2B, but I think he is perfect as the “super sub” that can fill in almost anywhere that you have injuries or production issues in the lineup.

  2. Dan Dumoulin

    Thanks for the research. I was really thinking more about his defensive production, but the info. on his offensive stats certainly makes me realize that memory is not always the best source for information! I am not giving up on him at all.. but the organization seems to be stocked (at the moment) with players that have the potential to play third. If Votto keeps developing and doesn’t get traded, then I guess they see him as a potential first basemen in the next few years.

  3. Brandon

    i’m about 90% sure phillips will move so SS next year, krivsky and narron have both already hinted in interviews that “they will address that in the offseason”….they won’t waste that kind of defensive talent somewhere other than SS…i don’t entirely disagree with leaving him at 2B just for this season though, baseball players more than any other athletes rely on a certain rhythm and routine, phillips probably hasn’t been over at SS in a year or 2 so he might not be comfortable switching on a dime like that, i think that’s something that can wait till this offseason, then if he still hasn’t moved over i’ll be confused

  4. Sam

    The most simple answer is to move Aurilia to short. BP stays at second and EE is freed. Arilia cleans up, Hatte bats fifth, and EE sixth.

  5. funspoiler

    The people in charge know more than any of us.

    Yeah, that’s what people said about the Nazis, too. Get a grip.

  6. Ken

    As Bill pointed out, EE is very young and make mistakes that other young 3Bs make. We need to be patient here. He’s demonstrated that he has the range to play third. With experience (that he should be getting every day), he’ll overcome his throwing problems and blossom as an above-average defender at third. I’d rather leave first for valuable hitters who don’t have the athleticism or skill set to play elsewhere (like Hatteberg) or a true masher (Dunn, if we decide to move him out of the OF).

  7. Brandon

    ok that nazi statement was completely irrelevant…and its kind of hard to argue this until krivsky or narron or somebody gives an explanation, then if you don’t agree with their reasoning for how the infield’s been constructed then we could argue it, but without knowing their reasoning its hard to me to disagree with it

  8. Sam

    This whole “Clayton = defense” thing is a total fraud.

    I agree completely. If you are looking for defense and “making the routine play” you better run Castro out there every single day and Clayton should NEVER step onto the field again.

  9. al

    Can you ID these Reds’ offensive numbers?

    1) .313/.389/.438/.826
    2) .306/.306/.510/.816
    3) .273/.368/.333/.702
    4) .261/.333/.304/.638

    The Clayton deal is really the only part of “The Trade” that still kills me to this day. In case you haven’t worked it out, Clayton is #4.

    Castro is #2, and while i doubt he’ll continue to hit like that for the rest of the season, he’s got clayton beat by a lot and he’s certainly a better glove.

    Deno is #3, and while not a massive offensive jump, he’s still better all around and needs to play to get out of the funk that i think he got into because of the pressure to replace kearns.

    and #1? The option that drives me nuts in how infrequently it’s mentioned: Ray Olmedo. At one point he was the SS of the future, not Felo. He’s consistantly hit all year at AAA, he’s always had a nice glove, and he’s young. Why not get a prospect instead of Clayton in that deal and give Ray a shot?

    He can’t be worse than what Clayton’s doing and he had a shot at being a lot better.

  10. Dan Dumoulin

    You don’t think…nah, couldn’t be possible…but maybe…could BOWDEN have said “no deal” if you don’t take Clayton?????

  11. Dan Dumoulin

    Olmedo and Denorfia should absolutely get legitimate shots to win regular jobs in Spring Training…if not, trade them! There is absolutely no benefit to letting guys get to the top of the minor league development matrix, become “major league” ready by all accounts, and then just let them sit there. If you can’t use them, move them. Krivsky has opened a ouple of spots in the system for pitchers… even if they don’t bring any more than B/C tier prospects at best, at least address areas of need with them whilethey may have some value.

  12. al

    Bowden may have said that, but by my count with what he was getting, he wasn’t in much of a position to make MORE demands. If he said no deal if you don’t take clayton, Kriv should have said no deal because he’s just baggage on our team.

  13. GodlyCynic

    Maybe they are simply worried about Phillips’s mentality. Don’t forget, this is a player who has been labeled an immature headcase during his career to this point. Perhaps they want to keep him happy while he’s playing well and not risk throwing him into a funk that could come from late seasons frustrations from changing positions. In spring training, when there is no pressue, would be a better time for an emotionally fragile guy to move back to SS.