Nothing going on, so I thought we should celebrate the one-year anniversary of Walt Jocketty’s most brilliant move as Reds GM to date. Yeah, yesterday was actually the one-year date; forgive me for letting it slip my mind.

Sheesh. Nothing else going on in Redsland. I’ve never seen an off-season that was so dead. What do you want to talk about?

51 Responses

  1. preach

    I still stand with every comment I made in that thread regarding this move. I do not understand why some things are so hard to evaluate by professional management when it’s just obvious to the point of stupidity. Cut bait and move on. The experiment is over.

  2. brublejr

    @preach: Amen! It never made sense in the first place, then after the year he had it shows clearly how bad a decision it really was.

  3. jason1972

    I’d love to see what the organization’s actual income and outlays are and how profitable it is year to year so that we can compare that to its MLB payroll.

    • RiverCity Redleg

      jason1972: I’d love to see what the organization’s actual income and outlays are and how profitable it is year to year so that we can compare that to its MLB payroll.

      This is exactly what I’ve been screaming. Until they can prove they have a zero profit margin (or close to it), I expect management to keep the components of the team that help us win and to go out and bring in the missing links. This is the sole reason I don’t want Phillips nor CoCo traded dumped (I’ll accecpt any trade as long as we receive equal value in return).

    • david

      jason1972: I’d love to see what the organization’s actual income and outlays are and how profitable it is year to year so that we can compare that to its MLB payroll.

      Okay, so this will probably irk you to no end, but the Reds are highly profitable.

      For the past 12 years, Forbes has put together a series on the economics of baseball including team valuations. In 2008, The Reds made $17 million before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization.

      The Reds also have a ridiculously low debt to value ratio. With only 12%, the Reds are 6th best in MLB in terms of total debt. The Yankees are 95% leveraged by comparison because of all the new stadium debt.

      The Marlins made the most of any team in baseball. The Rays made the fourth most. The Tigers and Yankees were the only teams to lose money. Tigers lost 26.3 million, while the Yanks lost 3.7 million. However, the Yanks didn’t really “lose” money. Because the Yankees own YES network, even though YES bid 80 million to get the exclusive rights, YES made far more than 83.7 million.

  4. GRF

    You had to go and ruin my holiday mood by bringing that up. 😀

    And I think we will see actual cost and revenue numbers for MLB clubs shortly after #[email protected]@ freezes over.

  5. jason1972

    @GRF:

    Yeah, I know. I wonder how they’d react if Congress asked them if they wanted to publicly report numbers or lose their anti-trust exemption.

  6. JustTheFacts

    Ok, let’s review.

    After reading some of the posts, I decided to go back and read what everyone thought about Willy’s signing when it was announced. Most, including Pinson, and BrubleJr didn’t like the move and thought it took money away from signing the big money LF. Travis G HATTED the move on principle. Chad didn’t understand it and though it was a mistake from the start. Y-City was unsettled, but open minded. Other’s who I won’t name because they still post and I don’t want the hate, liked the signing.

    At some point in late Spring Training when Willy’s OSP was over .350 some of you (I won’t say who) started to change your mind about Willy.

    BUT, I laugh now when I look at Preaches comments. Everything he predicted the day of the signing all the way though the Spring and into the beginning of the season when the Reds were doing well, was absolutely correct. There was no one more in touch with his dislike from the beginning. He even predicted Corey Patterson would have been a better option between the two of them. It was a daring thing to say considering the absolute hate for CP at the time. (I didn’t post back then, but I did lurk.) I did this because of certain claims you didn’t like it from the start. Well, you’re all telling the truth.

    BTW – Preach, you have my full attention, sir.

  7. pinson343

    @JustTheFacts: I’m kind of a fan of Preach too. I certainly never thought that Taveras would be a step down from CP. Actually, I respect CP, he would play all out, and he showed some class, such as when the Reds went to Wrigley and those lunatics were railing on him without mercy, he didn’t so much as even turn around to acknowledge their presence. And I liked his defensive play.

    Taveras, on the other hand …..

  8. WORLD

    Well………what do I want to talk about?

    Oh, how about this?

    Methinks Big Bob has to make a decision if he wants to resurrect the glory that once was the Queen City’s. If you are going to own a team with such a pedigree, you have the obligation to go for the glory. Whatever it takes. I don’t see it happening and maybe it is not his fault entirely if Cincinnati can only draw about 15,000 fans a game in a modern ballpark. But if you are not going for the gold, then get out and let someone else do it.

    Look what has happened to the fan base. Go back and look at all these posts. Arguing about Taveras and Corey Patterson. Worrying if Paul Janish can do the job. Holy smokes. There’s a bigger fish to fry and it’s the fact that the Reds have basically become a losing franchise with an uncertain future. All of this angst directed at Patterson and Baker and Taveras sort of misses the point, doesn’t it? Where’s the organizational pride? Why isn’t Davey Johnson the manager of the team? How can you fire Don Gullett who knows more about pitching than about anyone I know? Why is Walt J. the General Manager when Joe Morgan is obviously the man for the job? Stuff like that.

    Or you can argue about whether the bad fielding left fielder formerly of Tampa Bay should have been offered arbitration. Geez………..

    Think about the men who played for the Reds in the past. Pete Rose, Johnny Bench, Vada Pinson, Frank Robinson, Jim Maloney, Tony Perez, Joe Morgan, Lee May, Roy McMillan, Don Gullett, Tom Seaver, and on and on and on and on. The oldest franchise in the history of professional baseball. Pride. Glory. The Big Red Machine. Piniella. The Nasty Boys. Spuds. Johnny V. and the double no-no’s. And then you argue about Janish and Taveras? Why?

    You guys deserve better. You are obviously great baseball fans and loyal supporters of the Reds, win or lose. But you do deserve better. Why don’t you insist on it?

    That’s the stuff I’d like to read when I click on this site. Patterson is in the minors somewhere else. Leave Janish to pick ’em and hit .235 without a lot of blabber. Taveras can hit better than you and I and if he’s a 4th or 5th outfielder, he’ll help out with speed and defense. OK, we’ve figureed those things out. Next issue. Who should be the next manager? Yeah, we should talk about that a little bit.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the World.

    • Drew Nelson

      Why do you believe being a former player makes you a good manager/GM? If Davey Johnson is so good, why hasn’t anyone called on him since he was last fired? I love Joe Morgan, but what has he done to show he could be a good GM or even would want that job? Gullett had a nice run, but it was time for a change.

      People have got to stop living in the past, what the Reds had in the 70’s can never be matched ever again by anyone outside of maybe the Yanks and Red Sox. What the Reds have to do is maximize what they have, find great young talent in the draft and build that way.

      Right now the Reds have a very good young core of young players. The only down side right now with the team is the manager and his inability to maximize the talent he has.

      Paul Janish should be the SS, but not your No. 2 hitter. You have a very good infield with Votto/Phillips/Janish and Rolen who if they can all stay healthy be a very strong defensive and offensive unit.

      WORLD: Well………what do I want to talk about?Oh, how about this?Methinks Big Bob has to make a decision if he wants to resurrect the glory that once was the Queen City’s. If you are going to own a team with such a pedigree, you have the obligation to go for the glory. Whatever it takes. I don’t see it happening and maybe it is not his fault entirely if Cincinnati can only draw about 15,000 fans a game in a modern ballpark. But if you are not going for the gold, then get out and let someone else do it. Look what has happened to the fan base. Go back and look at all these posts. Arguing about Taveras and Corey Patterson. Worrying if Paul Janish can do the job. Holy smokes. There’s a bigger fish to fry and it’s the fact that the Reds have basically become a losing franchise with an uncertain future. All of this angst directed at Patterson and Baker and Taveras sort of misses the point, doesn’t it? Where’s the organizational pride? Why isn’t Davey Johnson the manager of the team? How can you fire Don Gullett who knows more about pitching than about anyone I know? Why is Walt J. the General Manager when Joe Morgan is obviously the man for the job? Stuff like that.Or you can argue about whether the bad fielding left fielder formerly of Tampa Bay should have been offered arbitration. Geez………..Think about the men who played for the Reds in the past. Pete Rose, Johnny Bench, Vada Pinson, Frank Robinson, Jim Maloney, Tony Perez, Joe Morgan, Lee May, Roy McMillan, Don Gullett, Tom Seaver, and on and on and on and on. The oldest franchise in the history of professional baseball. Pride. Glory. The Big Red Machine. Piniella. The Nasty Boys. Spuds. Johnny V. and the double no-no’s. And then you argue about Janish and Taveras? Why?You guys deserve better. You are obviously great baseball fans and loyal supporters of the Reds, win or lose. But you do deserve better. Why don’t you insist on it?That’s the stuff I’d like to read when I click on this site. Patterson is in the minors somewhere else. Leave Janish to pick ‘em and hit .235 without a lot of blabber. Taveras can hit better than you and I and if he’s a 4th or 5th outfielder, he’ll help out with speed and defense. OK, we’ve figureed those things out. Next issue. Who should be the next manager? Yeah, we should talk about that a little bit.Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the World.

  9. preach

    Well, I appreciate it and would love to say “I called that one”, but I also thought that Kirk Saarloos was going to be a good low investment, big return guy with his sinker in GABP. Still don’t know what happened with that one. It should have worked. Oh, well. I guess my scouting isn’t 100%.

    I guess he didn’t cost us much and was worth a flyer. Just thought it would be a whole lot better than what it was. He was better in Oakland. Oh, well.

    But yeah, Taveras was a simple call.

  10. Travis G.

    I couldn’t find my own comments from the time, but JustTheFacts says I hated the signing on principle. Sounds about right, by my recollection, because I knew that Dusty wouldn’t be able to resist using him in a way that would maximize harm to the team. (And as much as both Willy T. and CP sucked, I will agree that Willy clearly gave up while CP continued to play hard, so he’s got my grudging respect for that.)

    Dusty’s habits are my biggest fear about plugging Janish in as the everyday SS. The numbers (and my eyes) say he’s a terrific defender in an environment that increasingly rewards those skills, but his offense makes him an eighth hitter – at best. Alas, our manager subscribes to the notion that all SS hit second. Otherwise, who’s out there that’s worth the money they’ll cost? Tejada can provide the offense we need, but he won’t come cheap or short-term and will hurt the team’s biggest strength.

    I’m hoping the Reds keep their powder dry for a couple more weeks and use the 2010 money they saved with Rolen’s extension to sign a slugging LF or fifth starter who were left without a chair when the music stopped.

  11. JustTheFacts

    I haven’t looked at score cards, but I seem to remember Dusty putting Janish in the 2 hole for much of the time he started last year. If Dusty does that again, then I’m going to start thinking Dusty is trying to loose.

  12. jason1972

    Maybe I am just beating my chest. But when an industry gets pretty massive public subsidies in the form of stadiums and luxury boxes AND special exemptions from the federal government itself, why isn’t it forced to keep open books?

    • preach

      jason1972: Maybe I am just beating my chest. But when an industry gets pretty massive public subsidies in the form of stadiums and luxury boxes AND special exemptions from the federal government itself, why isn’t it forced to keep open books?

      As a public employee my payroll is a matter of public record. It’s on the state website, which is too easy to access, IMO. If the books are not opened all the way, could we at least get a peek? Perhaps there are things I’m not aware of, then make me aware of them. Hey, don’t open them if you don’t want to, but don’t use “lack of funds as an argument” if you aren’t prepared to defend your position with facts.

  13. CeeKeR

    What do I want to talk about?

    Well, how about something positive about the Reds? And by that, I mean I’d love to talk about a reason why I should have some excitement about the 2010 baseball season… If we, as a bunch of highly loyal Reds fans can’t find a reason to be excited about the season, how is it reasonable to expect anyone will be excited to watch pay to see the Reds this upcoming year? As of right now, the general consensus seems to be “wait ’til next year”. Well, I’m sick of that – and I’d love to talk about how to change next year into this year.

    • preach

      CeeKeR: What do I want to talk about? Well, how about something positive about the Reds? And by that, I mean I’d love to talk about a reason why I should have some excitement about the 2010 baseball season… If we, as a bunch of highly loyal Reds fans can’t find a reason to be excited about the season, how is it reasonable to expect anyone will be excited to watch pay to see the Reds this upcoming year? As of right now, the general consensus seems to be “wait ’til next year”. Well, I’m sick of that – and I’d love to talk about how to change next year into this year.

      I’ll start with something small: I’m looking forward to seeing broadcasts from the new Spring Training complex. Hopefully they will spend some TV time there this year since it’s new and a change of time zones.

  14. JustTheFacts

    Okay CreeKer, here’s a few reasons.

    Defense:
    The Reds missed having the best fielding percentage last year by .003 points. Keep in mind that much of the year EE patrolled 3rd base, Taveras patrolled CF, and Votto missed almost a third of the year at 1st. They have upgraded at SS (defensively), Phillips should have a better year, and Stubbs came in late to dazzle us with his play in CF. The Reds haven’t had a decent healthy SS since Larkin.

    • GregD

      JustTheFacts: Okay CreeKer, here’s a few reasons. Defense:The Reds missed having the best fielding percentage last year by .003 points. Keep in mind that much of the year EE patrolled 3rd base…

      Edwin only played 43 games for the Reds last year.

  15. JustTheFacts

    Releaf Pitching:
    The Reds had the 3rd best Bullpen in baseball, though I fail to see how anyone could have been better. As much as I love Weathers, he was the only one who worried me when he went out. Coco, will be back to scare us, but somehow find a way to shut down things. Massett, is the future closer of this team. Rhodes is lights out. Danny boy is a excellent change in pitching style, Lincoln was hurt at the start of last year, but we will back to his 2008 showing. Burton has something to prove this year, so expect a good year from him. And now, here’s the best improvement, the Reds will have Owings as long relief rather than starting.

  16. JustTheFacts

    Offense:
    The following are set: Votto, Phillips, Rolen, and Bruce. Hernandez is a decend hitter (for a catcher). I believe Stubbs is a future AllStar, and if Dickerson can stay healthy, you’ve got power and OBP in LF. Watch for Francisco and Heisey to cover the most fragile starters (Rolen and Dickerson). Not bad backups both defensively and most especially Offensively.

  17. JustTheFacts

    Intangibles:
    1.) Willy is not starting
    2.) They now know that they can win
    3.) Chemistry: WJ has boosted the chemistry by making it is top priority to “keep this team together”.
    4.) With a few BIG exceptions (SS, Utility, SP) the Reds have depth, especially from ready guys at Louisville.
    5.) Sutton showed at the end of last year what he is capable of doing off the bench. Watch him, should he stay healthy, we will forgot all about Kepp.
    6.) This is the last year of Dusty’s contract. Should anything go wrong, he could be gone by the break. (Enough to make anyone’s year.)
    7.) Feel free to insert your own ideas.

  18. JustTheFacts

    The Reds were 7 games over .500 before injuries started to take their toll last year. When they were healthy again in August and September, only the Yankees were better. The guys behind the starters are better.

    Do you feel better CreeKer, because it’s all BS? There are a lot of holes which MUST be filled.

    • david

      JustTheFacts: The Reds were 7 games over .500 before injuries started to take their toll last year. When they were healthy again in August and September, only the Yankees were better. The guys behind the starters are better. Do you feel better CreeKer, because it’s all BS? There are a lot of holes which MUST be filled.

      I like the optimism but you can’t pick and choose the months to follow. The Reds were also amongst the worst in baseball in July. The thing about baseball is that there are peaks and valleys. The great teams don’t let the dips get out of hand. The goal should be to play 1 game above .500 every month. If you do that, by the end, you’ll be in the race.

      I’m not overly impressed with the Reds’ pitching right now. Bullpens are unpredictable. While the Reds have had good bullpens the past two years, that can change quickly. I don’t believe Harang is anything more than a no. 3. I would expect both Cueto and Bailey to be incredibly inconsistent. If Harang, Cueto and Bailey each give you 10 wins, then that isn’t enough because there is no 18, 19, 20 win guy on the staff.

      I’m also incredibly concerned with the offense. We KNOW Baker is going to go with

      1) Stubbs
      2) Janish
      3) Votto
      4) Phillips
      5) Rolen
      6) Bruce
      7) Hernandez
      8) LF

      That’s not a winning offense. There’s a gaping hole at no. 2 and no real big bat to protect Votto.

      I say the team regresses a bit and 74 wins is not unthinkable.

      • RedinFla

        david: The great teams don’t let the dips get out of hand.

        I like the optimism too, but I am worried about the dips getting out of hand again… 🙄

    • JustTheFacts

      JustTheFacts: Do you feel better CreeKer, because it’s all BS? There are a lot of holes which MUST be filled.

      You must have missed this part.

  19. JustTheFacts

    @david: No, I agree with everything you just said. CreeKer just wanted something positive. I’m not sure how a team that is pretty much untouched can regress though.

    • david

      JustTheFacts: @david: No, I agree with everything you just said. CreeKer just wanted something positive. I’m not sure how a team that is pretty much untouched can regress though.

      The team can regress because…

      1) Harang can regress further as a result of age/injury
      2) Stubbs can have a sophmore slump (if you even consider him a sophmore)
      3) Hernandez will cost more runs than he produces defensively
      4) No Gomes in LF

  20. preach

    …but the Spring Training facility looks really, really nice…..

  21. JustTheFacts

    This offense may not be good enough to win, but it is an improvement:

    1.) Dickerson
    2.) Phillips
    3.) Votto
    4.) Rolen
    5.) Bruce
    6.) Hernandez
    7.) Stubbs
    8.) Janish

  22. Kevin Mitchell is Batman

    So here’s an idea…which unsigned veteran player whom you’d never want on your team (much less in your minor league system) will break camp on the 25 man roster this spring? Given the history of this team’s management (both past and present), I find it inevitable that there will be a Tony Womack/Jacque Jones/Darnell McDonald/Kip Wells type player who will finagle his way on to our roster while Todd Frazier/Matt Maloney/Juan Francisco get slotted in Louisville.

    Who is the 2010 version? How much will we overpay them?

    As a follow up question, which unsigned veteran free agent would you use the $5 or so million freed up by the Rolen restructuring? Who would be the best fit? For me, I would like it to be used at SS, where I think we have the biggest need over LF or 5th starter. I’ve been hoping/predicting we’ll land Orlando Cabrera since we all know that our SS MUST bat 2nd. I think he’d be a solid compliment with soft-J at 6, and could be had for about $3-4 million with a 2011 option. Thoughts?

  23. Drew Nelson

    To me next season comes down to two things. The first being health. We need for Aaron to bounce back and be like he was in 2007. If we can get that, I like our rotation of Harrang/Bronson/Johnny C/Bailey and whomever agaisnt any other teams 5 in the central. We need Joey to play a full 155-160 games and Bruce to do the same. We need at least 140-145 games from Rolen. If we get that AND our manager wakes up, I see no reason this team can not compete with the other teams in the central. There is no team in the central that much better then the Reds.

  24. Drew Nelson

    Can anyone here list the No. 5 starters for the other central teams and how much of an impact they had on their teams success? I am willing to bet our No.5 was no worse or better then the No. 5 starter for the Cards/Cubs/Brewers/Stros or Pirates.

  25. preach

    @Kevin Mitchell is Batman:

    Ooooh, I like this game. Let me throw a name out at you:

    Alfredo Amezaga.

    Speedy Centerfielder who is an average fielder, but rated higher than what he is. Sound familiar?

  26. preach

    Forgot to mention that Alfredo is a ‘defensive specialist’, which means no stick. And in the several seasons he has played he has slowed down a lot and is getting by in part on reputation (kinda like ol’ “Manos de Oros”). But he is a utility player (we love those), was a solid SS (note: WAS), and I looked this up, please believe me: he is the winner of the Jeff Conine Award as Mr. Marlin. Not sure what that means, but management loves them a gritty ballplayer like Jeff Conine.

  27. preach

    @Drew Nelson:

    But were our 1-4 starters as effective as the Cubs, Cards, or Astros? I wouldn’t be so worried about number 5 if we had lights out guys higher in the rotation. Not saying we weren’t, I haven’t bothered looking up the stats, but it seems reasonable to assume that when you have two of the top three Cy Young candidates in your rotation you don’t worry too much about who’s at your back end.

    • Drew Nelson

      I would stack up our starting 4 if healthy against anyone in our division. What do the Cubs have that scare you? Houston? Outside of Oswalt what other pitcher is that great? Maybe St.Louis, but Carpenter can’t remain healthy long term. I like our base 4 better then any other central division teams base 4 starters.

      preach: @Drew Nelson: But were our 1-4 starters as effective as the Cubs, Cards, or Astros? I wouldn’t be so worried about number 5 if we had lights out guys higher in the rotation. Not saying we weren’t, I haven’t bothered looking up the stats, but it seems reasonable to assume that when you have two of the top three Cy Young candidates in your rotation you don’t worry too much about who’s at your back end.

  28. Kevin Mitchell is Batman

    @preach:

    preach, your logic is impeccable. Can he be a speedy CF? Check. Is it a position that by no means needs to be filled on our Reds’ roster? Check. Are there better options available, with more upside, for a cheaper salary at AAA? Check.

    All things point towards our signing him. What would be even more hilarious is if we DFA Taveras and sign him as our 4th OF, thereby meaning we’re devoting $5 million to his position rather than just keeping Slick Willy on the roster.

    I’m going to go on a limb and hedge towards Walt throwing money at a 5th starter type in hopes that it sticks…a Mark Mulder/Brandon Backe type disaster. It just seems like he’s using his pickup of Price as pitching coach as a factor in his offseason decision making, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he levers that into a worthless by value/expensive by salary addition.

  29. JustTheFacts

    Got it. Bring in Alfredo Amezaga, and Eric Milton.

  30. RedinFla

    maybe Harang will stay healthy and get some run support. maybe Bronson’s second half will start in May. maybe Stubbs will be Rookie of the Year. maybe Votto will be stronger than ever physically and mentally. maybe Bruce will get it all together and add consistency at the plate to his great defense. maybe BP has matured into the solid asset he should be. maybe soft-J is working tirelessly on his hitting even as we speak and has found the perfect adjustment to bring his average up to .265.

    please don’t take my “maybes” away…
    they’re what keeps me going ’til Spring. 8)

  31. preach

    “I’m going to go on a limb and hedge towards Walt throwing money at a 5th starter type in hopes that it sticks…a Mark Mulder/Brandon Backe type disaster. It just seems like he’s using his pickup of Price as pitching coach as a factor in his offseason decision making, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he levers that into a worthless by value/expensive by salary addition.”

    I think you are onto something. I would hazard another name to throw out there in this regard:
    Dustin Moseley

    RedinFla: I understand completely. My maybes help get me through….

  32. preach

    @Drew Nelson:

    You are right. It’s just when you have a clear cut Oswalt, Carpenter, Zambrano ace, it seems to minimize number 5. I agree, if healthy our overall rotation stacks up well with the division. As we’ve seen, that’s a BIG if, which necessitates a solid number 5. There really does look like there are some free agent options out there that can fill the bill fairly cheaply (as far as starting pitching goes).

    I still say to work with Owings in the outfield or at first base and use him as a long reliever, double switcher guy. I know that it’s in the minority opinion, but I am really glad to have him available as a spot starter and would give him an opportunity to win a rotation job again in ST. He has better stuff than what he threw last year.

    • Drew Nelson

      Well Carlos and the Cubs have a ton of issues to address and he sure hasn’t pitched like a true stud since signing that new contract. Roy while tough was shown last year to be beatable and he has a horrible team around him. Carpenter is a stud, no question, when he is healthy and his history is not real strong on that. I like harrang’s chances of being in better health then Carpenter next season.

      If our GM is going to spend money I would rather see him lock up Votto/Bruce/Johnny C and others for 4-5 years then waste it on a No. 5 starter which would be no better then what we have already.

      preach: @Drew Nelson: You are right. It’s just when you have a clear cut Oswalt, Carpenter, Zambrano ace, it seems to minimize number 5. I agree, if healthy our overall rotation stacks up well with the division. As we’ve seen, that’s a BIG if, which necessitates a solid number 5. There really does look like there are some free agent options out there that can fill the bill fairly cheaply (as far as starting pitching goes). I still say to work with Owings in the outfield or at first base and use him as a long reliever, double switcher guy. I know that it’s in the minority opinion, but I am really glad to have him available as a spot starter and would give him an opportunity to win a rotation job again in ST. He has better stuff than what he threw last year.

    • RedinFla

      preach: @Drew Nelson: I still say to work with Owings in the outfield or at first base and use him as a long reliever, double switcher guy. I know that it’s in the minority opinion, but I am really glad to have him available as a spot starter and would give him an opportunity to win a rotation job again in ST. He has better stuff than what he threw last year.

      I definitely agree with the minority opinion on Owings.
      Also – I should’ve said my “maybes” have to carry me ’til Summer, not Spring as there will be no trips to Sarasota this year. 😥

      Spring Training will have to be all Twins. Guess we could do worse…

  33. preach

    “maybe soft-J is working tirelessly on his hitting even as we speak and has found the perfect adjustment to bring his average up to .265.”

    yeah, it’s called “Church league softball”.

  34. RedinFla

    @preach:

    Something like that kinda popped into my head as I was typing. :mrgreen:

  35. RedinFla

    Hey —
    Travis Wood named Starter of the Year by MiLB.com

  36. JustTheFacts

    Mark Sheldon on 2010.

    I’m most interested in the following comment: 10. Is 2010 the year the Reds will finally have a winning season?

    I will go out on the limb and say yes, especially if they can stay healthy. Granted, the margin for error is ultra thin, and everything would have to go right with the young guys that serve as the core contributors, but this team and the fans have enough reason to believe.

    I’ve been skeptical about Cincinnati’s chances before previous seasons, but despite the lack of change on the roster, there are some things to like. Although it was partially done out of economic necessity, the front office should be commended for standing pat and relying more on the farm system to fill holes. Other teams are seeking their young and promising prospects for trades, and the Reds are finally realizing there are no quick fixes for small market clubs to become contenders.

    Yes, the other teams have spent money while the Reds have spent little to none. But will acquisitions such as Randy Wolf and LaTroy Hawkins tip the scales for the Brewers or Bobby Crosby for the Pirates? Will Pedro Feliz and Brandon Lyon make the Astros titans of the division? Highly doubtful. So far, the Cubs’ only addition has been subtracting malcontent Milton Bradley for an underachiever in Carlos Silva. Everyone expects super free agent Matt Holliday to return to St. Louis, and the Albert Pujols-led Cardinals will naturally be the favorite to repeat as division winners. But that doesn’t mean Cincinnati is unable to be a winning club.

    The Reds finished 46-34 in the NL Central in 2009, but were 16-19 vs. the East and 10-22 vs. the West. They were also 40-41 at home. If they can stop being intimidated by the West Coast, and play better in their own ballpark, it’s not too much to expect a winner in Cincinnati.

    To this, I say, unlike any other sport, the game can be predicted by past performances. That is why statistics are so important. The Reds are the same team as last year. For the life of me, I cannot understand why people expect a different outcome.