If you want to continue being a Reds fan without going insane, do not read this article by Mark Sheldon over at MLB.com. I really want to be optimistic about 2009, but this piece is full of nuggets that should make any good Reds fan sick to his stomach. Some highlights:

Hairston, Chris Dickerson, Norris Hopper, and possibly non-roster invite Laynce Nix, are the main in-house options for left field.

I just threw up in my mouth a little bit.

Without Dunn, the Reds currently have just one hitter — Brandon Phillips — that scored 100 runs during a season, and just two guys that have ever totaled 90 RBIs for a season in Phillips and new catcher Ramon Hernandez.

Run production was a big problem in 2008 for Cincinnati, which was ranked 12th out of 16 National League teams in runs scored. The Reds’ .240 average with runners in scoring position was ranked at the league’s bottom.

With Votto being 25 years old and Bruce 23 on Opening Day, they’ll be under the type of heavy pressure that usually comes with being the biggest bats on the team. And that could be a lot to ask of younger guys. The 2005 Twins, coming off three straight division titles, tried to press forward without signing a big right-handed bat and relied heavily on young lefty hitters Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer. Minnesota had trouble scoring runs all year and missed the postseason.

Translation: “Yes, the offense was terrible last year, and it’s going to be worse next year. Get used to it.”

Phillips, who had 30 homers two seasons ago, seems to be the Reds’ likely choice for cleanup hitter.

Take a deep breath. It’s going to be alright.

If scoring runs is an issue, so could be getting men on base to set up scoring chances. The Reds’ team on-base percentage of .321 was tied for 13th in the NL. Free-agent center fielder Willy Taveras was signed to bolster the leadoff spot, but he had an OBP of just .308 last season, and in 538 plate appearances, walked just 36 times. He did lead the Majors with 68 steals.

He’s fast!

Hairston was optimistic about the current makeup of the Reds’ lineup, which could be the first small ball and speed team regularly deployed at the home run haven known as Great American Ball Park.

“Just being part of that lineup with Willy and myself, two guys that can run and get on base, for guys like Joey Votto and Jay Bruce — that really appeals to me,” Hairston said Wednesday. “I’m definitely excited about being in that lineup.”

Excuse me. I’m going to go jump off a bridge now.

49 Responses

  1. Travis G.

    Look at the bright side: This could be a season-long tutorial on the importance of on-base percent plus slugging.

  2. doug

    You tricked me Chad. Had you said ‘READ THIS’ I wouldn’t have (not true).

    BTW, Bruce is going to be 22 on Opening Day next year…. barely. His birthday is 4/3/87.

    Honestly though, I wouldn’t throw fits if Dickerson is starting in LF next year. There are better options out there, but I think he projects to be very Carl Crawford esque in the OBP/SLG department, as well as providing above average defense over there. I think he could hit .250-.260 with a .350 OBP and slug .425. That combined with good defense would be a solid addition to the team.

  3. Man Mountain

    Travis,

    This team had front row seats for the Corey Patterson experience last season and still coveted and signed low OBP guy for their lead off spot.

    A sufficient respect for OPS seems farcical in comparison.

  4. Shawn

    They tried this before….in 1982. Didn’t go well then, either.

  5. Deaner

    If scoring runs is going to be a problem, then we need pitching and defense. I don’t know what their ranking is, but I associate the Twins with great pitching and defense… they play the game the right way.

    This shouldn’t happen but… other teams will probable be able to take advantage of GABP as a hitter’s park. There will be no home field advantage for the Reds.

  6. mhopp

    Look at the bright side, the reds AA team is now only an hour from my house in NC. No reason to travel to OH to see the reds lose.

  7. Y-City Jim

    I least Sheldon didn’t try to sugarcoat it.

    I think we need to develop a Redleg Nation t-shirt with one of Dusty’s Yogisms on the back. Sell them through the site and I will buy one.

    Let’s collect some of Dusty’s words of wisdom then run a survey to pick one for the shirt. Here’s my submission:

    “It’s called hitting, and it ain’t called walking. Do you ever see the top 10 walking? You see top 10 batting average. A lot of those top 10 do walk. But the name of the game is to hit.”

  8. daedalus

    “It’s called hitting, and it ain’t called walking. Do you ever see the top 10 walking? You see top 10 batting average. A lot of those top 10 do walk. But the name of the game is to hit.”

    Did he really say that? I mean, he probably did and I blocked it from my mind, but just seeing it gives me a stomach ache.

  9. preach

    There’s got to be a couple of more deals coming, right guys? Right?

  10. CeeKeR

    I like the tshirt idea. And those that read my blog know I collect baseball cards – I opened a pack of Topps Heritage tonight that had a Corey Patterson card in it. I almost threw up right there…it really ruined the whole box for me.

    On topic: If the Reds are serious about this pitching and defense stuff, shouldn’t they be in the process of raising the outfield fences right now, especially in right?! They won’t need to worry about losing a few rows of seats either, I don’t see many sellouts to watch this group of players creating havoc.

  11. Y-City Jim

    I think closing that open end of the ball park somehow would deaden the ball a lot especially in the hotter months. I seem to remember that when they tore down the one side of Cinergy Field to make room for GABP’s construction that the balls started carrying more. That seems like simple convection physics. The open end of the stadium creates a “mini jet stream” of sorts. The river being right next door is probably a contributing factor as well.

    That said, I am sure there is zero chance that the Reds would ever do it. They might raise the fences but I’m not sure if that would have much of an impact but anything is worth a try.

  12. Y-City Jim

    Did he really say that? I mean, he probably did and I blocked it from my mind, but just seeing it gives me a stomach ache.

    The word “ain’t” should have given it away. The man is always using that word. He probably thinks it is cool to say it.

  13. David

    “The 2005 Twins, coming off three straight division titles, tried to press forward without signing a big right-handed bat and relied heavily on young lefty hitters Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer. Minnesota had trouble scoring runs all year and missed the postseason.”

    Yes. Yes they did. Then in 2006 the Twins won 95 games with the same roster. I’d gladly take a dreadful year with a 95 win season. I’d gladly take Morneau and Mauer over any stiff we have. PS Votto and Bruce are not even close to touching Morneau and Mauer.

  14. CeeKeR

    “I’d gladly take a dreadful year with a 95 win season.”

    David, I think you’ll get the first half of that statement this year…and if you combine this year’s win total with next years, you ought to surpass 95 wins…

    As an aside:

    According to the Washington Post, Adam Dunn is asking for a longer, and more expensive deal than either Milton Bradley (3 years $30 million) or Burrell (2 years, $16 million).

  15. Phill

    Votto has certainly started out much better than Morneau did.

    Not trying to say he is better but I could definately see him putting up those kind of numbers soon enough.

  16. Phill

    In regards to the info Ceeker just posted would anyone on here still hire Adam Dunn?

    I’m not asking if he’s better than what we have but given we know he’s at least asking for a better deal than 3 years/30 mil.

  17. brublejr

    The only bright side I can see from this offseason is there hasn’t been a contract longer than 2 years signed and hopefully after the Reds fail to win, Baker just might be fired. Other than that here’s looking to the future.

  18. Jason

    Based on the fielding metrics I’ve seen, I don’t know that I would hire Dunn for much more than $10M per. Maybe if he agreed to move to first base, but otherwise no. He’s a fantastic hitter, but the numbers seem to say that he undoes a lot of that with poor play in the field.

  19. Chris

    Is this where I’m supposed to say, “don’t panic,” “Jocketty has another move in store,” or “they know a whole lot more than a bunch of fans”?

    I have HAD IT.

  20. Chad

    Ceeker, my daughter just pulled a Patterson card, too. She’s 7, and my son is 4, and they just look through the pack to see if they got any Reds.

    There was a brief moment of excitement — “Dad, I got a Red!” — that was immediately followed by disappointment — “Oh, it’s just Corey Patterson. He’s the one who fell down running to home plate, right, Dad?”

    Yes, that’s the guy. We were at the game against the Nats when Patterson fell down rounding third and couldn’t score. It looked for a while like that might cost the Reds the game.

  21. Mark T

    The darkest hour is just before dawn. In terms of the stock market, the psychology works like this: As soon as everyone is convinced that it will not get better, it turns around.

    It’s not a pennant year. We all know that. Talent needs time to develop – Bruce and Votto and Cueto and Volquez aren’t quite ready yet. What’s the point in paying a fortune for a big bopper when it might only be the difference between fifth and fourth place?

    And it ain’t over yet. I suspect Jocketty is not done. Cheer up, Chris. (Does Cincinnati have any bridges or tall buildings? Better keep an eye on you.)

  22. Chad

    The problem is that we’re told not to panic every year, and every year the Reds make NO PROGRESS toward a winning team.

    Yeah, we can say that the Reds look like they’re on the verge of winning soon….but people have been saying that for 8 years and it has not been true, even one single time.

    I’m sick of being the Royals and Pirates.

  23. Travis G.

    The Reds’ offseason has been entirely underwhelming, but it hasn’t been as uneventful as the Pirates’ or as baffling as the Royals’. So we’ve got that going for us.

  24. World

    Things have to change for the Reds:

    How about this?

    Infield:

    Let’s start here.

    Votto is the real thing at the plate and until the Rook does his service time in the minors, this position is solid.

    BP is to be moved to shortstop immediately. He doesn’t like the change? Too bad. You now have a very good fielding shortstop who can hit the ball out of the park. This is an easy move.

    EE goes to left field. He stinks at third and there’s no denying. Viola. Now you have a right handed hitting outfielder with power. Anyone can catch and throw from left if you are an athlete. Trust me. I watched Greg Luzinkski play left for a long time. He wasn’t horrible and made the routine plays. EE can do this. Remember, this is an offensive position.

    Sign a third baseman. Joe Crede is available. Sign him. He was an All-Star reserve last season and before his back surgery,
    he completed the 2006 season batting .283 and had career highs with 30 HR and 94 RBI, winning the 2006 Silver Slugger Award for third base. He has a good glove and is only 30 years old. He is eminently available. Why has his name not come up? Because the Reds have an outstanding third baseman? Puh-leez.

    Second base? Hairston is great at second. I watched him with the Baltimore Orioles play the position with great skill. That’s where he should be. Keppinger can play this position also and he can hit. But Kep is probably your reserve infielder. This is a spot where you could try and find someone with some power. But Hairston will do the job until then.

    OK. We’ve fixed the infield.

    Outfield. Already fixed. EE plays left. Taveras plays center. Bruce plays right. Dickerson is reserve as is Norris Hopper. May need a veteran signing to help out a bit. Lots of outfielders on the market. Athleticism is the key here. No Pat Burrell stabbing at fly balls, striking out 100+ times, and clogging up the bases.

    Catching? Ramon can catch a little (he’s no John Bench but he’s better than Paul Bako) and the kid should push him for the job. Keep and open mind and see who plays better in the spring. I think the kid will win the job. It doesn’t hurt to have two decent, steady catchers.

    Pitching. Aye, there’s the rub. Harang is not a #1 as far as I am concerned. He’s a 2 or a 3 but you have to go with what you’ve got. Arroyo has a good attitude and can play the guitar on the bus. He’s a 3 or a 4. The duo of Cueto and Volquez are promising and you’ve got possibilities of 1 and 2 from both of them. Ted Power is a great pitching coach and he believes that there are some arms down there which could fill in the gaps. Homer, unfortunately, isn’t one of them. Give him another shot in the bigs and if he can’t cut it, trade him away for someone else that needs a change of scenery. An arm such as Bailey’s is always good trade fodder. Anyway, the staff as is will be instantly better with more solid defense behind them and a few more runs on the board. A lot, I repeat, a lot of teams in the bigs do not have thr promise of the staff that the Reds have right now. And Walt can keep an eye for someone who is available. Randy Wolf, a risk to be sure with his surgery last year, can pitch his butt off and has a great personality. It wouldn’t cost Bob much to get him with an incentive laden piece of paper. Sign him. There’s lots of pitchers still out there. Invite them to spring training and see what they’ve got. That’s what those “B” games are for. As I see it, you only need to find one more pitcher from the rock pile, the Colonels, or the Daquiri Deck in Sarasota.

    Give Dusty until the All-Star break to bring the team to life and if he can’t do it, hire Davey Johnson. All he ever does is win. Clean out the coaching staff and let him bring in his own people.

    OK- that’s it. I hope I didn’t piss off some of my friends in the Queen City but it seems so easy to do what I have suggested. The Crede signing and the moves of people around the diamond would not break Big Bob’s bank and would shake the club up little.

    What do you guys think?

  25. CeeKeR

    “he’s no John Bench but he’s better than Paul Bako”

    Talk about polar opposites. Just about every catcher I’ve ever seen fits that criteria!

    On a serious note, I don’t think it’s as easy as signing Crede and everything in Cincinnati becomes hunkydory. Maybe if you threw in raising the outfield walls 10 feet, only playing the Pirates, and free admission for fans this might bring some excitement to the game (with the possibility of the Reds winning more often than not).

    Like Chad, I am FED UP with “waiting ’til next year”. The Reds have been in that mode pretty much since they signed Griffey. The told us they’d win then, they didn’t. Then they said “we’ve got young talent, we’ll be winning in a year or two,” but we know they didn’t. Then they said we’ll win now (again), but they didn’t. Now it’s back to “we’ve got young talent, be patient.” Well, I for one am out of patience.

  26. CeeKeR

    Sorry for the double post, but I saw the Redleg Nation banner of “home of the Dusty Baker fan club” for the first time. I almost spit my drink all over my laptop. You really should have warnings before you post things like that!

  27. craig

    Small market team. No money to go after the big blue chippers. Multiple ownership, GM, manager and coaching changes over the last several (10+) years. No chance for a long term plan to take shape and develop. Since we are not the Yankees or Boston we can not just go out run amok any buy what we need, teams like ours therefore must have consistency and stable ownership and management.
    So baring any real changes i.e. baseball getting a salary cap or a billionaire owner buying the Reds we better get used to .500 record teams for the next two-three years and pray that Jocketty and Baker have a brilliant three year plan to get us to the playoffs.

  28. Chris

    I actually agree with almost everything World says. I think EE can still be a good 3b – he is a unique mix of great and terrible over there; he’s not mediocre, but the BP-to-SS thing is just too obvious not to be done.

    I also strongly prefer Keppinger to Hairston as a regular 2b. I think Kepp could very easily have a Grudzielanek-type career at 2b. He’s just miscast as a SS, and we’re all remembering his injured 2008 hitting line, and forgetting that’ he’s been a .375 OBP guy for the rest of his major/minors career.

    If Crede’s health isn’t an issue, I agree that’s somewhere the Reds should be looking.

    I think a more likely scenario is something like this, which is a recipe for 600 runs:

    CF: Willy
    SS: Harriston
    1b: Votto
    2b: BP
    C: Ramon
    RF: Bruce
    LF: EE
    3b: Kepp

    That’s the scenario that involves moving EE. Otherwise, it’s JHJ in LF and Kepp at SS. Pure misery.

  29. World

    Chris:

    Thanks for the kind words.

    Obviously, Crede isn’t the end all to the problems in Cincinnati. I just wanted to point out that some new thinking needs to be utilized by the Reds if they are basically going with the current mix. Some new thinking would help a lot. And one or two additions can spark a team.

    Consider this example. I’m from the Philadelphia area and the Phillies added a third baseman last year who is a great fielder and can hit with a little power. It made a big difference in the squad, setting up their infield defense and letting them use Greg Dobbs as a pinchhitter, a role in which he excelled. The Phillies move people around and really don’t kowtow to where the player envisions himself. Chase Utley was originally a third baseman before they moved him across. Burrell, for goodness sakes, was a third sacker before they moved him to 1B and then to LF. What I am saying is that you must use the players in a role which best suits the team. If Gonzalez is healthy and can play, then maybe you don’t have a problem. But who knows? He hasn’t played much in two years. And it doesn’t make any sense to have the answer to SS play second. Shortstop is the foundation on which the whole defense is built. Right? And to just send the same miscast lineup out there to play well for a while and then slump and to eventually pack it in shortly after the mid-point of the season makes no sense. What is does create is a pink slip from Big Bob after a hell of a lot of booing from you fans in Cincy who faithfully support a losing team and deserve better.

    This lineup isn’t “Killer’s Row” but it should play at least .500 and contend for a good part of the year:

    cf Taveras
    2b Hairston/Keppinger
    rf Bruce
    ss Phillips
    1b Votto
    lf EE
    3b Crede
    c Hernandez
    p

    Votto protects Phillips, EE protects Votto, speed at the top, a solid lineup. Two speedy guys up at top, with six legitimate 20 HR hitters in a row. 3,4,5 hitters should be .300 or thereabouts. The cathers are not automatic outs. In fact, there aren’t any of those throughout the lineup. Not bad at all.

    And take heart. You’ve got a stud at SS who needs more seasoning, I suppose, and another to play IB soon.

    Well, enough.

  30. Chris

    Brandon Phillips’ line from 2008 should not be ignored: .261 .312 .442

    If that’s your #4 hitter, your team stinks.

    Same said for a leadoff man with this line, regardless of how much havoc he creates: .251 .308 .296

    Both guys could rebound, but even their career lines leave something to be desired – at least cast in the #1 and #4 spots. (BP: .262 .308 .425; Willy: .283 .331 .337).

    I can’t believe how many people see Brandon Phillips as the key to this franchise.

  31. Chris

    Craig wrote: So baring any real changes i.e. baseball getting a salary cap or a billionaire owner buying the Reds we better get used to .500 record teams for the next two-three years and pray that Jocketty and Baker have a brilliant three year plan to get us to the playoffs.

    Two-three years? You mean the time at which Phillips, Cordero, Harang and Arroyo’s contracts are up? EE is probably gone via free agency, and Voltron is getting big money via arbitration?

    This is the problem with changing plans every 18 months.

  32. World

    Dr. Chris:

    You are indeed right. A team with BP as cleanup basically stinks. But that’s the hand you’ve been dealt. Votto has the power to clean up and maybe should occupy the #4 slot permanently as the situation exists right now.

    Hairston could lead off and Taveras bat second. That might help. It’s degrees of improvement but you can’t make chicken salad out………….

    Craig, send me an e-mail sometime and ask me the cicumstances when I met Big Bob. You will laugh your ass off.

    Off to the birthday party many, many miles from the revered Queen City.

  33. pinson343

    I just don’t want to believe (who does ?) that the Reds are done with their off-season dealing – this would be such a crappy team. I got some hope from Fay’s recent interview with WJ – he made a “competitive” offer to Baldelli, doesn’t absolutely rule out Abreu, and is talking trade with some teams. What are the odds now of bringing Dunn back for 2 years ? (One on a million, I’d say, but that’s better than a month ago.)

    I’m hoping (yes “hope” again) that WJ’s statements that “we can go with what we’ve got now” are just posturing, he doesn’t want to appear too eager. Just because he talks more than Krivsky doesn’t mean he’s actually saying anything.

  34. CeeKeR

    “Just because he talks more than Krivsky doesn’t mean he’s actually saying anything.”

    Pinson343, that’s entirely true. I hope that there is some secret plan to make the Reds better than they currently appear to be. I want to watch the Reds play meaningful ball at least through August, that seems like a fair goal (and a sign of how far this team has sunk in the past decade or so).

  35. The Hurricane

    I am not a Reds fan, but I really sympathize with you guys. The Taveras signing is definitely not going to optimize your ability to score runs. If I was GM, and that is a big “if, I would be giving Dickerson a long look. I think he has what it takes to lead off and get on base enough to give Bruce and Votto the chance to knock in some runs. One of the other posts mentioned signing Joe Crede. I wouldn’t do that in a million years. His career OBP is under .310 and he’s never gotten on base at more than a .323 clip. He is also not that healthy and he plays a position where you should actually have a solid bat. His is far from plus.

    I think your ideal lineup would be something like this (try not to cry):

    Dickerson
    Encarnacion
    Bruce
    Votto
    Phillips
    Keppinger
    Taveras–if he all of a sudden starts taking walks and getting on base, then maybe you could hit him leadoff, but who really sees that happening?
    Hernandez

  36. brublejr

    Chris, I agree, I don’t see Phillips as a franchise type player. He is a nice player that would be good in about the 6th spot in the lineup protecting a guy like Bruce, but if he is your 4 hitter your in trouble.

    World, I agree with your moves for the most part, but only if Crede is healthy otherwise you have Kepp in a power hitters position and that’s not good.

    If the Reds plans are to be better defensively in the middle, they should move Phillips to SS and sign Grudzeilanek to play 2B until Valikia or somebody from the minors is ready in a year or two. I don’t buy being better in the middle with Gonzalez coming back. He is coming off serious injury and his range will probably be no better than Hairston or Keppinger which is not good. This fanchise has been very shortsighted and I don’t think they even look at what they have coming up because they could have saved a lot of wasted money.

    With some of the quality guys in the minors you could easily move Phillips to short, and move EE to LF to get ready for Valaikia at 2B and either Frazier or Fransico at 3B in ’10. How good potentially (I know I hate that word too) could the infield be in ’10…Votto, Valaikia, Phillips, Fransisco…With OF of EE, Stubbs, and Bruce, then on the bench you have Frazier, Dickerson, and Dorn. If you moved EE to LF this year, you could determine if he could handle it, if not trade him to a team like SF and you still have Dickerson or Dorn to play in the OF. That lineup looks far more pomising than we are going to see this year and probably the year after because management won’t see things correctly.

  37. brublejr

    One more thing to add to my previous post, look at what the Rays did the last couple of years to get competitive. It took them moving a IF to CF, their 3B to 2B to replace him with a Rookie at 3B. They bought in a cheap, very good defender at SS, and had a nicely developed pitching staff who lowered their ERA largely to the defensive help by those position moves. Bam, they go from laughing stock to the WS in one year.

    Lastly,

    Let’s look at a couple of the last few FA signed and you see how much money was/is wasted. Cordero 12 mil per, Taveras 3 mil per, Crappy 3 mil, and of course Gonzalez. I don’t buy a small market team paying a closer 12 mil, that is just downright crazy. You have to have the lead to get him in the game and lesser expensive guys could do just as well. Gonzalez’s contract was a laughing stock when it was signed and looks even worse now. Crappy was rediculous and Taveras is as well.

    I am more willing to watch my team losing if they are developing for the future so I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. I can’t stand watching “veterans” blocking development of younger, cheaper talent to have a false hope of contention.

  38. Matt Steele

    regarding the Dunn thing from comment #14

    I honestly just believe that Dunn is making it difficult for the Nats to sign him because he doesn’t want to play there. He’s probably asking a lot more from the Nationals but if a contender came calling, I bet he’d take less

    We all keep talking about moving Phillips to short. Is there any interview with him anywhere that asks him if he would? Maybe he really likes playing second and would fight a move to short. Maybe the Reds brought up the idea to him before and he said he didn’t want to?

    I have no idea if that’s true but it would be interesting to hear what his thoughts on playing short would be

  39. brublejr

    I think he is against it, but I think if you want to be a leader or captain you lead by example and do what helps the team win. There has been many players not want to move from their current position but do it anyways because it is better for the team.

  40. Tom

    He was all for it in Sep. 2006 when they were looking at letting him finish the year out there before he hurt his hand and they decided to put the trial at SS off. Larkin was his idol and he had always wanted to be a SS.

  41. Phill

    bruble, how many of them are gold glovers at the position they are leaving?

  42. Scott

    I really wish they would go after Nady or possibly offer a nice deal for Rios like they were talking a year or so ago.

  43. Dave

    I grew up a Reds fan, having had season tickets since 1976. We gave those up a couple of years ago. Like most Reds fans, I am depressed at the state of this team and this organization. I’m not going to be a typical Reds fan and harken back longingly to the days of the Big Red Machine, but I will say that it depresses me to see the depths to which this team has sunk in my lifetime. We have become a laughingstock to MLB. I’m tired of hearing that we’re a small market and can’t compete. The Yankees buy what they want every year, but it hasn’t brought them a championship in how many years? We, as fans, need to be told what the plan is, and then we need to see actual results! Even if the team is only improving incrementally, at least we can then see progress, and we will be more likely to support this team in their long-term goals. But we haven’t seen any substantial improvement for such a long period of time, that we’re all getting tired of hearing about “next year.”

    I believe that WJ can turn this team and this organization around, as he did in St. Louis; but not without a lot of support both from fans, and especially ownership. But if this orgnanization expects its fans to hang in there, then it’s time to look in the mirror, and realize that this is not a second-tier town, and we don’t deserve a second-tier team. We already have that in the Bengals, but that’s a comment for another time and place.

    Please, front office, give us a reason to keep believing!!!

  44. brublejr

    There have been a few to switch positions, most of them because it is toward the end of their career and it needed to be done. But the biggest comparision would be Arod. He went to a new team and switched positions because of Jeter and he was a gold glove winner. Others who have switched include Biggio, Ripkin Jr, Bench, Griffey, and Ichiro.

    I am not saying that you should move a GGW but really who is there to play short in the future? Janish..NO, Valaikia…Probably not at short…Do you really want to go back into free agency and pick up someone like Gonzalez…No thanks.

    My point is that they really need to look at what is coming up from below. Valaikia is projected as a 2b in future, Frazier is projected as a 3b in future. There isn’t a SS ready in the system and why waste money on a has been/never was FA.

  45. Bill

    Brublejr…forgot the most important one in Reds history, IMO, Rose. He was a Gold Glover in the OF (’69 & ’70) but moved to improve the team.

  46. Phill

    Agreed that they don’t have anyone down the line at this point but Phillips’ minor league stats at shortstop read out very similar to Chris Valaikia but BP has shown to be a great defender.

    A-Rod switched positions as part of a trade to a new team because the New York Yankees are too stubborn to realize that Derek Jeter is not a shortstop any longer.

    What position did Ichiro swap? Right field to now being center/right? That’s not as major a change as 2b-SS or 1b-3b or however else you draw out an infielder role change.

    The problem with a majority of your examples a few excluded such as Craig Biggio is that these guys weren’t top defenders in their prime switching out of the kindness of their hearts. They were switching positions because they were too old to be good there. They had slowed due to injuries and other ailments.

    If we have all these prospects with blocked positions then you can trade them for a major league ready or established player such as a shortstop.

  47. brublejr

    Thanks Bill, that was a bad ommission.

    Phil, I agree with that as well, some had to move and I noted that. I’m not saying that moving him is the best option, but it very well could be a good option.

    Talking about an established SS,
    Word is that Michael Young wants out of Texas because they are trying to move him to 3b. I’m not saying that we should go after him, but what would it take to get him? EE, Arroyo, and a prospect? I’m sure it would be a lot. Any thoughts?