Lots of discussion around the Reds blogosphere about yesterday’s signings of Jacque Jones and Daryle Ward. Daedalus is worried that the Reds are becoming the Cubs, and not in a good way. And over at Red Reporter, an answer for those who say “it’s just a minor league deal”:

As for the minor league deals? Yeah, Corey Patterson was signed to one of those too.

Ugh. Did he have to play the Patterson card?

Anyway, also check out the analysis of Chris Sabo’s Goggles and Dunn and Dunner. Both are worth a read, as always.

You know my thoughts: nothing to get excited about…yet. Low-risk/moderate-reward signings. Ward, in particular, could be a good spare part as a lefty with power on the bench. Better than the Latin Love Machine Javier Valentin, anyway.

We’re only in trouble here if Jones flops and Dusty Baker insists on starting him in LF for an extended period.

UPDATE: Check out the following quote from our intrepid GM…

“Talking with [manager] Dusty [Baker], we wanted to strengthen our bench with experienced guys and guys with good character that would fit our club and contribute,” Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said.

So, do we blame Dusty or Walt if this thing goes awry?

20 Responses

  1. Jason

    I think the real problem will come if Jones plays well in spring and for about two weeks after the season starts. In that case, Baker might feel the need to start him for the rest of the year.

  2. GRF

    As many have said, it is the Dusty factor here that concerns me. Bruce and Taveras are obviously locks. Out of Dickerson, Hopper, Gomes, Nix, and Jones I have a sick feeling it will be Hopper and Dickerson sitting in AAA.

  3. nick in va

    The “Dusty Factor” – can we get Dusty to take a tv gig on Fox News instead of “managing” the Reds?

    Speaking of Sabo’s goggles, I saw a kid earlier this week with similar specs. Brought back good memories.

  4. Mark in CC

    The MLB-TV idea isn’t bad. Maybe we could trade Dusty for Sean Casey even up. Casey could be a player/manager and that would take care of the lefthanded bat on the bench need and save some payroll on a manager.

    As I recall Jones was in Dusty’s doghouse in Chicago, was benched and only started playing regular again when he got a couple of starts and his performance got him back in the line-up.

    Does anybody see the correlattion with Jones’ career decline and when testing for performance enhancing substances started?

  5. per14

    Signing these guys as 25th men would be a great sign. On a real, complete team. On the Reds? Just gives Dusty an excuse to go with the vets!

  6. per14

    And, yes, I see a correlation in Jones’ numbers and steroid testing. But the numbers also correlate to the normal arc of OFs’ careers.

  7. GregD

    So this squeezes the roster for players like Rosales and Hopper. Makes it a longer shot for Nix and Gomes?

  8. doug

    Its a Dusty and Walt problem. If you have a manager that isn’t smart, then you have to give him players he can’t make mistakes with. Walt is giving Baker exactly what he wants to make a lot of mistakes with.

    So its Bakers fault for wanting these guys and eventually playing them. Its Walts fault for making it happen.

  9. Bill

    I’ve knocked Dusty as much as anyone, but I don’t think the veterans/young guys debate has much merit at this point.

    He was VERY GOOD with the young guys last year. When Votto merited it, he became the Reds starting 1b, it may have taken longer than we would have liked to get Bruce up here, but when he did, he stayed and played, Baker was more supportive of Encarnacion than any manager he’s had with the Reds…Dusty has his faults (lots of them) as Reds manager, but the favoring vets over young guys hasn’t shown up.

  10. Phill

    Agreed completely Bill. Dusty has flaws…major flaws but vet favoring hasn’t shown up yet.

    The flip side to the Patterson arguement is that JHJ was a minor league deal who went to the minors and really earned his way onto the team before having one of his best seasons(short though).

    I just hope that whoever makes the team out of spring training has earned it. If it’s Jacque Jones and he was hitting on fire I’m fine with it. If it’s Laynce(or do we have Jayson?) Nix and he had one hit all spring training and he makes the team I’ll be ticked.

    The Reds appear to have TONS of depth for the outfield right now(regardless of quality) so if there is someone at the MLB level really sucking and Dusty keeps playing them then it’s on Walts head to make the roster changes.

  11. nycredsfan

    I agree Bill. To me, it’s not so much favoring old guys over young guys, rather favoring guys who suck, who have always sucked, and who always will suck over guys who have some potential to be good.

  12. Glenn

    Didn’t I see something about Jones having eye surgery after his disasterous season last year? Secondly, Do they make right handed hitters anymore?

  13. GRF

    On a different note, does anyone think all these signings are any meaningful signal about where the front office believes Dorn, Stubbs et al. are at? I am inclined not to read that much into it, but…

    And I agree Dusty was better last season than his history would suggest. We will see what the 25 man roster looks like at the start of the season and how long they stick with a Patterson like performance, should heavan forbid we see another one. It isn’t that these moves are all necessarily so bad in isolation, I just don’t see how the whole is going to fit together.

  14. Phill

    I guess the idea is hope at least one of these guys catch lightning in a bottle. Throw as much crap at the wall and hope some of it sticks.

  15. Mark in CC

    As far as Stubbs and Dorn go I think it means the amatuers writing here are more convinced of their readiness for 2009 than the experts running the club.

    Of course that doesn’t mean their always right and we are always wrong, but they should know better.

  16. GregD

    “And I agree Dusty was better last season than his history would suggest. ”

    Actually, as I pointed out last spring, Dusty’s history with young players is better than the rap he gets. When presented with actual prospects for starting roles (pitchers or position players), he’s historically played the young guys over the vets.

  17. GregD

    “As far as Stubbs and Dorn go I think it means the amatuers writing here are more convinced of their readiness for 2009 than the experts running the club.”

    I think it means they’d rather wait until they are ready to come up as everyday players and not have to use them as bench/4th outfielder/role players.

  18. rpa

    “Throw as much crap at the wall and hope some of it sticks.”

    i believe this is commonly referred to as “the bowden method”.

  19. Plowboy

    Dear Editors,

    Guys, I’ve been reading this website daily for the last 3 years. As a seriously demented Reds fan, it has brought me a lot of enjoyment (ie. self-inflicted pain considering the state of our beloved team).

    My query is this: Would you consider posting a topic concerning who Redleg Nation readers think would be an “appropriate” manager for the Reds? Like most of us, I am no fan of Dusty for various reasons, yet I tire of reading the constant complaints.

    That said, I’m curious as to who everyone thinks IS a good (ie. sabermatricianly-enlightened) manager and who could actually put the best team on the field (given the current roster) based on their strengths as a ballplayer AND a team player.

    In other words, WHO out there could get the best out of this team? (and, yes, they have to be active – please no “Sparkys”.)

  20. Plowboy

    Or would that be “sabermEtricianly-enlightened”?