Ah, Scooter Gennett – remember that guy? The Reds All-Star second baseman has been kind of lost in the shuffle due to the groin injury he obtained in spring training. Couple that with the fact that Derek Dietrich has been performing pretty dang well at second base and you can see how Scooter has become somewhat of an afterthought.

Amidst the trade rumors and rumblings that the Reds didn’t have much of an interest in resigning him, the future at second base looks rather dicey when Scooter hits the free agent market after this year. Many thought that Nick Senzel was going to be Scooters long term replacement at second base, but with him cemented in center field for the foreseeable future, it kind of changes things.

Although his production has been replaced to SOME extent, it’s important to remember the value that Scooter has. He slashed .303/.351/.508 over the past two years, was a 4.2 WAR player in 2018, and had an OPS of .847. Scooter was the second best second baseman in the NL last year when taking into account pretty much every offensive metric.

The Replacements 

So, who could take over for Scooter after this year? Well, the current infielders consist of:

Derek Dietrich – Free agent in 2021, 29 years old

Jose Iglesias – Free agent in 2020, 29 years old

Jose Peraza – Free agent in 2023, 25 years old

Scooter Gennett – Free agent in 2020, 29 years old

Kyle Farmer – Free agent 2025, 28 years old

The only three infielders currently signed beyond this year are Jose Peraza, Derek Dietrich, and Kyle Farmer. Although our favorite bee keeper is currently sporting a ridiculous .999 OPS through the first 38 games of this year, odds are Dietrich is eventually going to gravitate back to his career norm of around a .750 OPS. Jose Peraza on the other hand has struggled mightily to start the year and has been wildly inconsistent over the course of his career. The upside with Peraza is how young he is. Kyle Farmer is a bench piece.

Another thing to consider is how the arrival of prospect Taylor Trammell or the addition of another outfielder could shift Senzel to second base after this year. It’s a very abstract scenario, and the kind of roster uncertainty that you probably don’t want to go into the 2020 season with, but it’s a possibility.

The Decision

So, Jose Peraza , Kyle Farmer, and Derek Dietrich are likely going to be in the Reds’ organization some way or another next year. What the Reds do with the other infielders, especially at second base, is up for debate. If it were me, I would explore a reasonable, short-ish extension for Scooter Gennett – pending how well he plays and comes back from injury the rest of the year. Other than Senzel,  I’m just not sure I completely trust anyone else the Reds currently have on their roster as an every day big league second basemen going forward. Dietrich is a nice bench piece to have, but in no way is he the quality of player that Scooter Gennett has shown to be over a consistent amount of time.

I know both parties have to agree to an extension, and Scooter won’t just accept anything thrown his way, but he’s shown a desire to stay in the Reds organization. Couple that with the fact that MLB free agents just aren’t getting the kind of coin that they used to and it’s not far fetched to believe that Scooter could be had for a sensible contract extension.

There’s no telling how effective Scooter is going to be when he actually returns from injury. It’ll be interesting to see how the Reds split time with him, Dietrich, and Peraza at second base. In my opinion, as long as he’s healthy and producing, there’s no question that Scooter should see the most amount of playing time out of the three. The future at second base is a question mark, hopefully Scooter can be the answer.

Photo Credit: Hayden Schiff. Licensing for the photo can be found here.

66 Responses

  1. Pete

    Yes, yes and more yes.

    Looking at 2020, the Reds are likely to have some holes to fill. If they do not resign Iglesias and Scooter, the following positions may have to be filled: 1B, 2B, SS, and RF. Truth be told, we are also very weak at the catcher position. So this could mean 5 out of 8 will need replacing. Let’s cut that number down – at this point I’m not comfortable signing Puig to a new contract and the jury is out on Votto.

    At the end of the day, it will come down to the dollars and length of new contract for Jose and Scooter. But I agree the Reds should be in a good position to extend Gennett.

    Top notch stuff Jeff.

    • VaREdsFan

      Like it or not, Votto is the 1B for the next few years, until they decide how much salary they want to eat at the end of the contract. The no-trade clause is fully in effect.

      If for some grand reason that the NL gets the DH, then signing Scooter is a must.

      • Pete

        I think this is a little premature. Votto will not be next year’s first baseman with a .663 OPS, you can mark it down and put my name next to it. In fact, he won’t want to play at that level. Joey has his pride. Here’s hoping we don’t have to find out.

    • Indy Red Man

      Hmmm??? I’d say Pujols has pride too. Pride enough to run the bases like he pays attention unlike Votto. Ole Albert still didn’t refuse any gazillion $ paychecks while compiling a .672 ops & a -1.8 war in 2017. Money continues to talk…loudly

    • Chett Moses

      Votto could suck this year and we’ll into 2020 and still be the first baseman for the Reds. First, he’s earned the opportunity to have that many chances in being a Hall if Fame caliber player. Second, there are few options outside of moving Suarez to first, Senzel to third and leaving a hole somewhere else. It doesn’t make this team vastly better getting rid of Votto. I also think Votto still has gas in the tank and that there’s a bit more to the Reds offense being done and out than Votto being old and washed up.

  2. Sliotar

    Jeff, nice job identifying the ages of candidates. It matters greatly in how most teams operate now.

    Scooter went public with his frustration regarding an extension, and I can tell you firsthand that he was, by far, the most popular person at the RedsFest in Columbus this winter.

    Maybe Scooter thinks he has leverage with the Reds…but that list of replacements begs to differ.

    Personally, I think Puig, Gennett, Roark (to a lesser degree) are going to be surprised how little other teams value them this winter as free agents. It is a young man’s, “prime is 25 to 28 when you are cost-controlled” MLB now.

    Reds have leverage on all of them… and should use it… very short-term/cheap deals if minor-league replacements aren’t ready.

  3. Kyle

    What I would do:

    – Insert Scooter back into a starter when he returns and examine his play closely. If he finishes the year out strong, sign him to a 2 or 3 year extension for around 20-25 million. Well worth the value if he puts up another solid season and can put up at least 2.5 and 3 WAR per season, the deal will be well worth it. Jonathan India would be the in house replacement for him when his deal is up.

    – Keep Senzel in center until Trammell is ready next year to replace him in center. Senzel will then be moved to right. Unpopular opinion, but let Puig walk. I don’t think he will be worth the contact he is wanting, IMO.

    – Resign Iglesias to a 2 or 3 year deal as well and have him be your opening day starter. He has earned it so far. Have Peraza become a super sub until he can earn a starting spot. He has value there.

    – Sign Luis to an extension and see if you can sign a #3 type starter to a 3 or 4 year deal (Wheeler, Ryu, Teheran, maybe resign Roark or Wood).

    – Explore an extension for Desclafani. 3 or 4 year for $25 or $30 seems reasonable.

    2021 rotation:

    #3 starter

    2021 lineup:


    • Datdudejs

      Yea! Sign every player to an extension and give them all the money and pray to god no one regresses

    • Brian S Jolley

      I think Mahle will be #3 starter or #4 at worse. I think Santillan will be the other guy. I think Winker goes to RF, Trammell to LF, and Senzell stays in CF.

    • Steve

      I am a life time Reds fan that goes way back.
      I agree with everything you said with one major exception. As you pointed out letting Puig go won’t be popular, making Votto a bench player will also be a difficult but necessary move. As he gets older, his skills continue to decline. Either Detrick or a current prospect such as VanMeter should start at first.

  4. RandyW

    I used to be in the “do not extend” camp for Scooter but if he comes back and continues to hit, I don’t see how the Reds cannot attempt to resign him at a reasonable rate. A power hitting 2nd baseman goes a long way to make up for the diminishing power that the Reds are getting from first and if they can upgrade right field and catcher ( I can see Casali possibly overtaking Tucker for that position) then I would bring back Iglesias for another year at short and use Peraza as a super sub to see if he can be a long term solution at short. Otherwise, maybe India becomes that guy in 2021.

  5. Roger Garrett

    Market value for players at age 30 has fell drastically.Dietrich has filled in very very well but will he continue?Will Scooter pick up where he left off?Age makes so much difference any more and you have to look no further then Peraza.His age continues to get him playing time at short,second and now in left.In reality he can’t hit anywhere close to any of those guys but nobody will give up on him because of his age.No reason not to sign Scooter for a couple of years but there is no glaring reason to sign him either.If Scooter had played would he have hit the 10 or 11 homers Dietrich has provided?Would his average and OBP be better or his defense?
    Of course nobody knows that but Dietrich is under control next year and Scooter isn’t so to me that goes along way to in deciding if he is expendable.Will one of the outfielders in the minors be ready?The Reds may be forced to just let him walk away?We shall see?

  6. Ghettotrout1

    Re-sign him to a 2 – 3 year deal AAV 6-10 mil range. With Votto aging with a quickness in front of our eyes we can use Scooter and Winker at first when Votto needs a day off. Then you can use Dietrich as a versatility piece.

  7. Ben Rubin

    Are you assuming Senzel will forget how to play second after playing center for a year. He’s played infield (including 2nd) his whole minor league career. Moving him back to second next year isn’t an abstract fringy idea, it should be plan A.

    Two top prospects playing in their natural position>one playing out of position, the other blocked and a hole at second. That seems like a no-brainer to me.

    • matthew hendley

      28 games. That is the total of games that he has played at second base. Ever. Ever. 236 and two thirds innings. out of 1500 innings. That is not what I would call his entire career. Not even close.

      • Ben Rubin

        I said “infield” his entire career. I would think most of the skills acquired at 3rd and short would be transferrable. How many total games has he played in center field?

      • matthew hendley

        Well good if that’s the case he can be the SS of the future, which clears a lot of problems……oh wait ignoring the fact he has played a total of one game at short that argument has been invalidated by the reds coaching staff.

  8. matthew hendley

    A wonderful piece. Looking at the replacement possibilities. Going to eliminate Senzel due to the fact that the Reds seem to view him as a long term center field answer. Trammell has not had any reps in center, and Siri is still striking out (45/129AB), and is Years (plural) away from the Majors.
    Peraza is eliminated cause….. well he’s peraza and we have seen this story three times now.
    Farmer- Not a horrendous option, but since he started getting regular playing time after his insane number of Home Runs to Pinch hit appearances he seems to have cooled off. (this is intended as a Joke. Please do not reply to this with stats indicating that players are not really going to hit HRs at every at bat) would like to see a lot more. He is getting platooned right now and a serious look at him against RHP would be necessary for a movement to 2B starting, to be considered.
    Dietrich- Now that’s the question, Under Arb through 2020 Deitrich taking over the reigns at 2B would have him exposed to something that David Bell has been disinclined to do this season and that is Bat against LHP and looking at his 2018 splits (2019 is too small on LHP/LHB at 7PA) one can see why. SO using him as a starter in one position, would leave him unavailable against the LHP. However, due to his defensive versatility Deitrich would be much more useful getting 4-5 starts a week, giving various persons around the diamond a day off each day, (i.e. Monday 1B, Tuesday 2B, Wed, LF etc etc.) and then getting the day off thrown in there. He would also be useful as an injury replacement should someone else on the field get injured. Not saying No, just saying its not the best use of him. One thing is certain. DD needs to be in a Reds uniform in 2020 one way or another.
    Iglesias- Starting somewhere yes, not at 2B though.
    JVMR- since it is going to be mentioned, a winner of the massive month in the minors sweepstakes, he has come up and…… one hit, and a walk, and shown so little that Peraza gets starts over him. I would wager he is heading back down anyway when scooter returns, but he needs to get himself seen to be seen.
    So Yes, Scooter is not 100% indispensable, but he is enough that he should get an extension. The reds should offer it too him now, while he is still on the IL for this reason. It would allow them to offer a realistic incentive based contract. A guaranteed base in the 5-6Mil range with the opportunity to earn roughly the same amount in incentives. That way the reds are protected from injuries (that pull him off the field). Considering he produced a 4.2 WAR season, while supposedly injured I would love to see what he would produce when healthy. An extension shouldn’t go any longer then 2023 (his age 33 season) where he can still easily be productive. Utilizing Baseball Reference Similarity scores – Similar players to Scooter that have already reached and exceeded the age range reference include Ian Kinsler, Arron Hill and Brandon Phillips, all players who had 4-5 WAR+ seasons after their age 29 season. An extension of that type would not hurt the reds, and it would solve a lot of questions.

    In the end we can also let him go. Create another hole that needs filling. Another unfilled answer, another reboot/rebuild etc etc.

    • matthew hendley

      Taylor Trammell will never be the Reds CF. in 327 Professional games he played CF a total of 88 of them. None this year, and only 60 of them last year. The Reds obviously view him as a Left fielder.

      • matthew hendley

        28 games. That is the total of games that Senzel has played at second base. Ever. Ever. 236 and two thirds innings. out of 1500 innings. That is not what I would call his entire career. He has played just over 15% of his entire professional career at 2B. A vast majority of it came at 3B. He will clear 2B with his CF starts by the end of this season. He is the CF of the Future and the Present. Not 2B.

  9. Bob Purkey

    If the Reds can get Scooter for 2-3 years at a reasonable price $6-8MM/year, I would do it(after he proves that he is healthy). Resign Iggy to be the everyday SS and as mentioned above, Peraza becomes you tools guy who can get a lot of at bats filling in.

    I am not sure if Trammell is a CF, but if not, but I don’t think it matters as your OF will be Winker/Senzel/Tammell and Dietrich as 4th OF.

    Let Puig go at the end of July if not in the race. . .if you are in, keep him and let him walk.

    With all of the money coming off the books, they should be able to sign a high quality FA starter to go with Gray, Castillo, Mahle & Disco.

    • David

      After a year in the Bullpen, I would like to see Bob Stephenson get another swing at starting. He may have at last resolved his control issues, and be a ready for prime time starter.

      Ditto Cody Reed, who may be up to stay in the BP this season….soon.

  10. AllTheHype

    VanMeter or Dietrich 2B for 2020. Peraza is on the path to super sub and Iglesias will be resigned for SS.

    • Brian S Jolley

      At Peraza’s still young age and the leap forward he took last year, I think it is a little premature to write him off, but I understand why many are at the moment.

  11. matthew hendley

    On a complete side note and totally unrelated subject matter they just released the first Cy Young Polls for this season. Verlander looks like he is heading for a repeat in the AL. But guess who is leading the NL poll.

  12. jreis

    this is just my humble opinion but I got to watch the Lookouts and to me ,Jose Siri is ready now to play centerfield in the majors. he is also really starting to hit so I think he is the future centerfielder of the club.( I Think Trammel is still a little raw and may not be ready for the big leagues next year). We can then move Senzel back to 2b next year.

    I really think Scooter wants to stay in Cincy and he could be a huge bat off the bench if he signs a long term deal at a discounted rate. maybe 4 year deal at 3 mil/year. if not , let him walk.

    • matthew hendley

      No Free agent is ever signing a 4 year 12 million dollar extension. Its one thing to give a person a lower salary for one year. But a multi year deal gives the impression you want the person there. Just giving you an idea how your $$ figures would be received.

      • jreis

        I think you would be surprised. from my understanding he wants to finish his career here and realizes this is a small market club. at least offer it. if not it is not worth signing him for more than that in my opinion. Senzel is going to be back at 2nd next year I am telling you so he is going to be a bench player.

      • matthew hendley

        I could buy, 4/12 with a boatload, and I mean a boatload of incentives. I am not of the opinion that Senzel is moving from center either. Scooter does want to be here (hometown discount) and is currently injured (injury discount/increased likelihood of incentives contract) but no way he takes that as the whole contract. He also needs to be playing every day until his play indicates otherwise. I have been looking into the production of middle infielders in their late 20’s early 30s and there are many who have good, if not their best years in that time range. Not a bench piece. Not until the end at least

    • Brian S Jolley

      You think Scooter would be content to be a bat off the bench?

  13. Eric the Red

    Yes. He’s expendable. An interesting question is what to do with Dietrich once Scooter is available, as Dietrich is maybe a bit more flexible defensively and a bit less valuable offensively. I’m not sure we have room for two such similar players, especially as we’re likely to continue with a short bench.

  14. Scott C

    Jeff since you are only considering those players on the roster, that leaves India out of the equation, but he very well could be in the equation for 2021 and could be an option at second. It is for that reason, I would be very concerned about giving Scooter any extension past 2020. Of course if I was in Scooter’s shoes I would want something longer than 1 year, at 29 he is moving out of his prime years. And the free agent market is not real strong for 30 year olds that can only play second base. He may be ready to sign anything that is reasonable. I have no problem with Senzel staying in the Outfield, he is an athlete and can pretty much play anywhere. Perhaps in two years when Trammel comes up, he moves over to RF, maybe he comes back to second. I really like Scooter but his signing or not signing with the Reds is not going to make or break the next couple of years. I believe that the front office under DW has set up the future well with young athletic guys. The guys like Roark, Dietrich, and even Puig and Scooter are only placeholders until the guys on the farm are ready. Enjoy them while they are here but don’t get too attached.

  15. matthew hendley

    Lineup out again, 3rd RHP SP same lineup in a row. Looks like Bell has him mind set for roughly 2/3 of the games. Until Scooter returns that is.

    • Roger Garrett

      Need Iggy at 8,Casali at 7 and the pitcher at 9.Gives us the best offense we can put out there.This should be the lineup 90% of the time.I am good with Peraza spelling Iggy or Dietrich but he never ever should play for Winker in left.Winker is getting targeted as not being able to hit lefties and that can’t happen in his first full year in the big leagues.He needs to prove he can’t over a long period of time.

      • matthew hendley

        I understand the pitching switch up though, moving Roark to today who has gotten into the 7th two games in a row now, to preserve the Bullpen, Having Sonny go up against an equably questionably good pitcher in Darvish, followed by Castillo actually does make some sense. I will give Bell that one. The bad news means that this game tonight is probably one of those that were ‘expected losses’ or whatever the phrase was.

  16. Big Ed

    I would not be so sure that Dietrich will regress to his career norm of “around a .750 OPS,” which is really .768. Miami was a clear pitcher’s park; his career OPS in Miami is .696. His career road OPS is .819, but was .859 last year.

    Scooter has a career OPS of .787, and on the road it is .770 career (and .864 in 2018). You can make the case that their offensive contributions are pretty similar, once you consider the Miami ballpark factor. Scooter hits for a higher average; Dietrich walks more.

    Neither one will be confused with Bill Mazeroski in the field, or with Barry Larkin on the base paths.

    • Indy Red Man

      They said the same thing about Scooter….a million frigging times. Scooter even starting hitting lefties too! DD is no sure thing, but those 370 ft flyballs to right in GABP count and he can hit them…plus some monster shots too!

  17. Brian S Jolley

    I would like to see Trammell in LF, Senzell in CF, and Winker in RF for a long time. In the infield Suarez at 3B, Iglesias at SS, Peraza or Gennett at 2B (depending on Peraza’s bat bouncing back and improving into his late 20’s and/or the amount of cash it will take to extend Scooter for his good bat/bad glove play) and Votto at 1B hopefully. The biggest question marks for my are at C if Stehphenson doesn’t develop as expected and 1B if Votto gets old overnight (he might already be).

  18. TR

    If Scooter comes back in good physical shape, he certainly has the grit the Red’s offense has lacked so far.

  19. doofus

    It’s True! It has been “Grit” that the hitters are lacking!

    • matthew hendley

      Well its something alright.

  20. David

    I think it is more likely Aristides Aquino plays center than Taylor Trammel. And presently, Jose Siri is out performing Trammel at AA.

    Trammel may be at least 2 years away from being with the Reds. Unless he catches fire this summer, he spends the whole season at AA ball.

    Gennett is what Gennett is. A whole lotta payroll is going to come off after this year of patching the leaks. The Reds can afford Gennett, but do they really want him? He needs to come back and hit again like he has the last two years. Honestly, I would rather see him in Left Field and Senzel at 2nd. People forget just how much of a hack Gennett was at Second. He now has hit well enough to be placed out there in left field.

    And I like Scooter and want him to stay as a Red. And I think he wants to stay too, if the price is right, Bob.

    • Doug Gray

      There’s ZERO chance that Aquino is more likely to play center than Trammell. None. Trammell is actually a center fielder, even if he’s not playing there right now because Jose Siri is simply a better defender (this is more about how good Siri can be out there than how Trammell can play center). Aquino isn’t exactly a strong defender in right field. He’s got a big arm. But his range is iffy there. He’s not playing center field ever again unless it’s an absolute emergency.

      • David

        Well, that seems decisive, Doug.

        I guess you told me.

      • Doug Gray

        It is decisive. One guy simply doesn’t have the requisite speed or ability to play center (Aquino). The other guy does (Trammell). There’s a reason that Aquino hasn’t played an inning in center field since 2014. And in that 2014 season, he literally played an inning. One. The only inning in his 9 year professional career that came in center field.

        Though, I guess, if the Reds are going to play Jesse Winker in center, to quote Kevin Garnett, anything is possible. But yeah, in a realistic scenario where it’s based on actual skillset, there’s nothing in the skillset or ability of either of those players that says that Aquino is more likely to play center than Trammell.

      • lwblogger2

        Who would have ever thought that Winker would have been an option in CF? Winker! Yes, Aquino in an emergency but Trammell is absolutely a much better defender than Aquino aside from arm-strength.

    • RojoBenjy

      Since Siri is two years older than Trammell, I think it’s acceptable that Siri is outperforming him right now. It gives breathing room to let Trammell continue to develop where he is, while they give Siri more looks for the big league club.

      In other words, no need to rush Trammell, and in the meantime see what they have in Siri. I’ve read that José needs to reduce his strikeout rate though.

  21. Old-school

    I will reserve judgment on Gennett. There’s simply too many unknown variables in mid May of 2019. One that was not mentioned that could change everything is the development of a certain AA outfielder.

    Jose Siri is hitting .295 with an OBP of .359 and OPS at .785. He’s stolen 10 bases. Power and speed and defense have been there. Now he’s hitting for avg and getting on base and it’s AA- not low A Dayton. If he finishes the next month strong, he should be promoted to AAA in late June.

    Senzel may yet need another position change- this time back to the infield- if a young Eric Davis is ready on Opening Day in 2020.

    • doofus

      Siri is a “young Eric Davis,” seriously? You think he is that good?

  22. Chris Holbert

    Siri is not even listed in the top 100 prospects from MLB. He turns 24 in July, not sure he is destined to be a long term fix in the future outfield soon. If you do not resign Scooter and Puig, and Votto continues to slide, who is going to drive in the runs….Everyone is high on DD but he was not signed by the Marlins, he fits best as a utility guy, providing days off. I understand second seems to be an afterthought, but they cannot find anyone, currently, to provide the production Scooter does. They will definitely not pay a FA to play there, so might as well pay Scooter for a couple years and forget about it.

    • Old-school

      Valid point but what’s new is Siri is succeeding at AA. I’ve never seen him play x one spring training inning when he hurt his wrist and single A
      highlights and Caribbean world series highlights. Doug gray says his CF defense is very good so if he’s developing as a hitter in a real pitching league in the upper minors, that’s news.

  23. doofus

    “…was a 4.2 WAR player in 2019…”

    He has not played in 2019.

  24. doofus

    I do not see 2B as an issue, this year or next. If and when Scooter comes back he will be the starting second baseman. Hopefully, they will be able to move him for a useful player or two before the trade deadline.

    Pitching, pitching, pitching and more pitching should be the issue.

    Second, the OF should be addressed, this year. Puig is the Red’s answer to Max Patkin, not a clean up hitter. After 7 years he still has no strike zone discipline. The Dodgers knew this, how long will it take for DB to realize it?

    Is Winker a full timer? If so, then Bell has to commit to him, stop the platooning. He is the type of hitter this lineup needs.

    Still need to find a centerfielder, this year, and move Senzel to 2B. Do not get me wrong, I think Senzel has played well in CF, but he should be playing on the dirt. DD is a nice utility player. He is not an everyday player.

    Did I mention pitching?

    • doofus

      I forgot, the 3rd issue is 1B. I know we cannot question the seemingly decline in the “One from the North,” but I will, it seems real. He has lost his Bat speed, that is no riddle.

      I think Winker should be fitted for a first base mitt and start a few games at the first sack.

    • Indy Red Man

      Speaking of pitching. Young Indians righty Shane Bieber is considered to be a promising pitcher (3.81 era) but he allowed 4 hrs in 6.1 last night. Lorenzen gave up 6 in 81 ip last year. I don’t see anyone playing that up? As good as Castillo is…he gave up a 3 run bomb to Posey the other day? Lorenzen can roll up dp’s and keep the ball in the park plus he’d be one of the best hitting pitchers in the NL. He needs to be in the rotation! I may be wrong about Roark though? He’s been a gamer!

    • Indy Red Man

      Since May 3, Puig is 12-36 (.333) with 3 hrs, 7 rbis, 5 walks, and 4 steals. I think he will dominate GABP when it warms up!

      I agree DD is not a everyday player, but nobody said he was? Platoon vs rhp

  25. doofus

    I hope he does warm up…so he can be dealt before the trade deadline. This team cannot be complacent with a mediocre roster any longer. Puig is not worth an extension in Cincinnati. His career numbers are proof. He is a mediocre player.

    Yes, mediocre is my word of the day. I am like an old dog with a bone. Rrrrrr!

  26. Chris Holbert

    Maybe the Reds should look to trade for a young power hitting middle infielder, Lindor?, then they could extend him, he is 5 years younger than Scooter, then second base production becomes less important, and his age fits in with the other younger core guys…Winker, Senzel, Castilllo, etc.

    • BigRedMike

      Getting younger should be the goal, yet, many think extending a 30 year old middle infielder is the right decision. A 30 year old middle infielder with two separate injuries that is entering a decline phase.

      At least the FO has not shown any signs of extending the aging middle infielder, that is encouraging.

  27. matthew hendley

    There is a narrative that 30 is some magical number when players begin to regress. The more I was looking into information to formulate my response the more this looked more and more fishy, to the point that it is that this arbitrary number is absolutely false.
    There are two ways to look at this ‘claim’, from a talent standpoint, and from a physical ability standpoint. From a talent standpoint, there are many players and for this argument we will use 2B both on and off the reds team, who still have significantly good years. (Ian Kinsler, produced from his age 30-34 an increase in his WAR hitting 6.0 during his A34 season before dropping off a cliff at age 35Arron hill’s second best season was his age 30 season, former red Brandon Phillips had 3 seasons where he cleared a WAR of 3 including his Age 34 season. Same issue was a drop off at Age 35) Former Texas Ranger 2B, Michael young produced WARs in the 2.5 to 3 WAR range, until his age 35 season. SFG 2B Jeff Kent-massive wars into the 7 Range until his A36 season, having a late renaissance at the Age of 39 as well. These are all players that are considered similar batters to Scooter (via Baseball Resourse) The point is it is much more likely for a sustainably good player, who scooter is looking like he could be, will not suffer a falloff until the Age of 35/36 and maybe even later. He will defiantly be productive in his early 30 years. So obviously talent loss is not the issue.
    Will he become physically diminished by the age of 34-35. Then the question becomes is a 30 year old less physically fit then a 20 year old? The answer to that question is a resounding No, infact the opposite is generally the case. In high intensive athletic and physically demanding environments, humans, who at least attempt to maintain a level of fitness will be stronger, as fast, and healthier at the age of 30 then at 20. I have numerous examples (into the thousands) of this case being true. This does eliminate individuals, who generally give up on their personal health by said timeframe, but that should not be applicable to the vast majority of Baseball players who are given generally superior healthcare and superior physical training opportunities during the seasons.

    So if 30 is not the age of regression (because it isn’t) then why is it an age that is harped on? The one thing that I did notice is that almost every player worthy of a multiyear extension reached or had reached their 6th year of service time by the age of 30. In other words they became expensive. Expensive from a relative standpoint due to the fact that the reds or roughly 25 of the other teams could afford such a contract. The luxury tax is the only real impediment to continued expenditures on players, as the ownership of any team, (yes even the A’s) have the financial ability to raise said capital to sign such individuals.

    Now does this mean every player should be signed to a contract through their age 35 season. Of Course not, there are outliers to the talent issue, their are physical injuries that cause permanent injury or limitations to players. Players sometimes do not take good care of themselves , (panda comes to mind here, Prince fielder is another possibility), etc etc.

    Much has been made about the two injuries, that Scooter has had. The Groin injury is unfortunate that much is true. However this Shoulder injury, was one that he played through, and played through to the point that he was a 4 WAR player. What would his WAR have been if he had not had the injury, 5? 6?. Do we want a potential 6 WAR player walking, just for the simple fact that a extension would cost money that we can afford? My opinion is an extension through 2023, (A34) would not be a risk.

    • lwblogger2

      Late to the party but would agree that you’re right, insofar as there have been good players, 2B in particular, into their mid-30s. There have been a small handful who have been good into their late 30s, as you pointed out. The reason 30 is sort of the cutoff however, is the aging curve data over all players, over the last 10 years, shows that players entering their over-30 seasons tend to decline and often decline sharply. So, the data shows that in general, it isn’t wise to give a middle IF a free-agent contract into his mid-30s. There are exceptions of course, just as you pointed out. The data shows however that there are many more instances where it doesn’t or won’t work out.