It’s been an absolute whirlwind of a news day for the Cincinnati Reds. Mike Moustakas hit the injured list. Dauri Moreta was finally called up from the minors. Tyler Stephenson returned from a short trip to the injured list. But all of that news is small potatoes in a sense compared to the news that just came out that the Reds have extended manager David Bell for two seasons. All of the beat writers tweeted the news out at the same time, though it seems that Mark Sheldon of beat the others to it by a fraction of a second – so he’ll get the credit as being first on this one.

Manager David Bell has been a hot topic over the years in Cincinnati. Of course, you can replace the name David Bell with any other managers name, and replace Cincinnati with any other city, and you can probably have a statement that’s just as true. Everyone knows better than the manager of the big league team and that tends to hold true whether it’s Dave Roberts and the Dodgers or whether it’s whoever the heck the manager of the local knothole team.

That said, David Bell certainly has made some head scratching decisions over his years at the helm. He’s also currently got the Cincinnati Reds sitting at 78-74, which is better than any projection system had them at. And he’s done that while having Mike Moustakas out for half of the season, Joey Votto out for a month, Tejay Antone missing much of the year, Michael Lorenzen out for half of the season, and Eugenio Suárez hitting like a Double-A player for much of the season. Over the last two seasons he’s won six more games than he’s lost as the manager.

As for the rest of the coaching staff, Bell noted that he expects all of them to return according to C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic. That means that pitching coach Derek Johnson and hitting coach Alan Zinter are expected to return. The pitching has been hit-and-miss this season. Luis Castillo’s first two months were brutal, but he’s been one of the best starters in the game since June 1st. The bullpen has been, well, you’ve seen it. Wade Miley returned to be one of the better starters in baseball for much of the season. The offense, for all of the inconsistency it seems to have, has scored the 3rd most runs in the National League this season.

267 Responses

  1. BZ

    There is really no better way to culminate the craptastic team the Reds have become over the last month and a half.

  2. LDS

    A dark, dark day in Cincinnati Reds history. It bodes very ill for the future of the franchise.

    • Dk072257

      Wow, as followed the Reds all year long, one very sad truth is, the organization, ownership and Mr. Bell are mediocre performers at best. Rewarding Bell with a two year extension is like tenure for teachers. Mr. C missed tons of chances to put this team in the playoffs. The team ran out the same old same old players who did not perform well enough to be bench players on other teams. Nick for sure will pack his bags and rush out of Cincy for the highest bidder as the ownership here has no intention of being competitive.

  3. BZ

    And just like that, the 2022 Reds Opening Day lineup was set:

    1. India, 2B
    2. Winker, LF
    3. Votto, 1B
    4. Suarez, 3B
    5. Moustakas, DH
    6. Farmer, SS
    7. Aquino, RF
    8. Barnhart, C
    9. Deshields, CF

    Can you feel the excitement in the air?

    • CI3J

      LOL! I just wrote something similar down below. Glad to see I’m not the only one that feels that dark cloud coming.

    • AllTheHype

      Probably Aquino 6th and Deshields 8th before Barnhart.

  4. Dan

    Good lord. He’s so bland and uninspiring.

  5. CI3J

    I hope you like the lineup the Reds have now, because I have a feeling they are going to be running the exact same lineup out there Opening Day 2022.

    C Barnhart
    1B Votto
    2B India
    SS Farmer
    3B Suarez/Moose
    LF A.J. Pollock*
    CF Senzel
    RF Winker


    OF Naquin
    OF Akiyama
    IF Moose/Suarez (whoever isn’t playing)
    IF (Some 30-something retread)
    C Stephenson

    * That’s right, I fully expect them to sign the 34-year old Pollock to a 3 year contract this offseason to replace Castellanos.

    Pitching rotation: SAME

    Bullpen: Subtract Lorenzen and Givens and replace them with some 30-something journeymen, but other than that, SAME.

    Enjoy 2022, Reds fans!

    • JB

      And Pollack spends most of the 3 years on IL.

    • RedsGettingBetter

      Well , this could means one thing, the Louisville Bats, Chattanooga Lookouts and Dayton Dragons will have a very good group of top prospects in 2022 so they will have a pretty good season…


      I think your pretty close except I’d say you have to many non pitchers, either g.m.or manager keep wanting 14 or 15 pitchers, I looked never been a team to carry 14 pitchers all year, not counting old rules September call ups, only team to carry 14 pitchers full year. And then in extra innings use 1 of them to pinch hit cause you have no bench players left .WHAT A JOKE so sad for fans he’s coming back for 2 more years

    • RedsMonk65

      Pollock is signed with L.A. through the 2022 season.

      Will not be many decent FA outfielders out there, from what I understand. Really need to find a way to keep Castellanos, if at all possible. Of course, the way things are going and looking, that could be nothing but a pipe dream.

      Could be we have to roll with who we’ve already got for next year: Winker, Naquin, Senzel, Friedl, Aquino, and Shogo (that assumes, of course, that all of the above are healthy and not traded, which is a big assumption in some cases). But hey, we have plenty of infielders who can play OF right? Barrero, Schrock, et. al. (he said sarcastically).

      • CI3J

        Pollock has an opt out this offseason, same as Nick C. If he’s smart, he’ll do it, since as you say, there aren’t many great choices this year, so he could ask for a lot more.

  6. JB

    Mike Brown says “Hold my Beer” . Signs Zac Taylor to 5 years extension as a dark cloud hovers over Cincinnati.

    • BZ

      And then Fickell leaves for USC or some other job. haha

      • Jim Walker

        The guy in the job up I-71 which looked like the timing would never fall in place for Fick suddenly is looking a lot less secure. Just saying

      • CI3J

        I personally would love to see Fickell back at OSU. I’ve never been a big fan of Day, despite Urban’s endorsement.

      • Jim Walker

        I think Hartline is a guy not to be overlooked if there is an opening in Columbus. He stepped into a real mess in the receiver room and has not only cleaned it up but elevated the room to the same level Day elevated the QB room.

      • BZ

        I really liked Day heading into this year but things are just different this year. I’m not a fan of all of the secrecy (e.g., mysterious benchings & no more depth charts) but I still think he can be really good. It just feels like there is so much going on behind the scenes and that he has lost control a little. I could go on for days but most of the Cincy faithful don’t want to hear Buckeye football talk. haha

  7. Stoney

    Truly Truly sad!! Will be a very rough frustrating 2 years!!!

  8. Chris Holbert

    I have ben a fan for 45 years. It is truly a disappointment that DB is returning. He is only part of the issue. It seems that with the current organizational setup Owner/GM/MGR, the on the filed will not move forward and will continue to frustrate fans with inconsistency, questionable decisions, on and off the field, and the lack of direction. .500 seems to be the acceptable level of finish. With the current makeup, based on anticipated exits, to finish higher would be truly wishful thinking. How sad that an historic, respected franchise continues the downward trend, while other franchises have the ability to plan, and implement, even if it causes an occasional down year. There seems to be light at the end of the tunnel for those fans, for Reds fans, not so sure……

    • Dewey Roberts

      Bell is not exactly a clone of Sparky Anderson, is he? More like the polar opposite. His press conferences put me to sleep.

    • Benchedfan

      Final nail in the proverbial coffin. I was reluctant to come back after Bell was kept this season. This seals the deal. Same reason I left the Bengals back in 1998 and haven’t looked back. Good luck Reds fans you deserve better.

  9. Scott C

    I hear a lot of complaining about this decision, but Doug was right in the fact that everyone thinks they can manage better than whoever is at the helm. I certainly have scratched my head abut some decisions Bell has made but when you look at what he has had to work with and ownership has tied one hand behind his back, I am not sure any other person could have done a better job. Everyone was happy to see Dusty come to Cincinnati and the same people were happy when he left. Personally, I don’t think this decision is good or bad. The important decisions are can than sign Nick to an extension or new deal. Can they extend Winker and India and Naquin and Stephenson now. Can they find some way to get rid of the bad decisions they have made, yes Moustakas and Shogo and perhaps on a lesser scale Suarez. Is Shortstop fixed withe Barrero? Can they find another decent starter and have they fixed the bullpen? The manager can only put the players on the field they have to perform. And so many relievers and players have not.

    • Hanawi

      Not going to comment on Bell bc it’ll get deleted. But why extend Naquin? He’s a 4th or 5th OF on a good team. Plenty of guys like him around every year. It’s also too early to extend India and Stephenson.

    • Chris Holbert

      The question is, how much input does Bell have in picking up those players no one else wants and then plays them…..I could list a whole bunch, but I think we know who they are , and not just bullpen

    • LDS

      I’d take Baker over Bell any day of the week. Houston seems to be doing rather well under Baker. They’ve only won 90 games so far. Bell has yet to lead a team to 81. Maybe they’ll get there this year. Maybe.

      • Michael E

        I’d take Houston’s GM and ownership over the Reds. If you swapped managers, nothing would change record-wise. There would be a win or loss reversed in both directions.

        Houston has a better team, better roster and better executives making decisions. A higher payroll helps too.

        I honestly don’t want to choose either of Baker or Bell.

        Joey V said Bell is so easy to play for and the players like him. Maybe that is the problem. Sometimes a new, stern, strong presence is needed. An actual manager and not your bestus buddy. Same for parenting. Kids need a father and mother, not two bestus buddies that let them do whatever they want.

        Ugh. We need a motivator and a non-nonsense manager. I can’t answer who that is as there are more bad than good managers being recycled.

    • BZ

      Someone can’t pee all over their shoes and then complain that they have wet shoes. Everyone likes to pretend like Bell was dealt this horrible hand. He may have been with the bullpen, but he double-downed with his decision-making. Bell decided to ride the Moustakas/Suarez/Deshields/Barnhart/Cabrera train down the stretch when he was already down offensive firepower. Bell decided to relegate Barrero and Lopez to the bench and then shrug his shoulders when they don’t produce every 10-days they get a chance. Bell decided to relegate Santillan to the black hole while he ran Hembree, Brach, and Doolittle out there in key situation after key situation. Bell decided to run Lorenzen out there recklessly in his first game back and cause him to go back on the DL. Bell made a lot of horrible decisions during the years. What great decisions has he made? Playing India? No, even that is flawed because India had been benched and was likely on his way to AAA but was thrown back in when Moustakas went down. If Moustakas had not gotten hurt, India is likely not the frontrunner for ROY now.

      • Roger Garrett

        Well said and all true especially about throwing the young guys under the bus.Veteran privilege if you will.Old School thought process.Bell is just a yes man for Bob.Those who won’t go along are gone such as the two guys who just left despite the improvements in our minor league system.

      • DataDumpster

        BZ, Thanks for saving me the trouble of noting pretty much the same things you did not to mention how many games were possibly lost because of Bell’s bonehead substitutions (Cabrera for Friedl just being the latest). Unfortunately, this extension was expected but worse than I predicted as the move to Castellini’s son taking over looks to be delayed for two years while every bit of the spent orange is squeezed out of Moose and Suarez. Since the team’s value inexorably increases, ownership can just play the Buddy club and not be too concerned about winning or the fans. So we are left with the vacuous one to opine about nothing except there’s always another game tomorrow. Meanwhile, they wallow in mediocrity until the big contracts leave the books and some money might be found to fund the future if they haven’t already destroyed it by then.

        MLB owner goes to a Tarot card reader and says “Tell me the future of my team.” She replies: “They don’t have one. It’s been all used up.”

    • greenmtred

      Good comment, Scott C. I chuckled when I saw the headline, knowing that it would further provoke the Bell-obsessed. I thought Doug’s summary, above, was fair and accurate, and have never gotten a reasonable answer when I’ve asked how they reconcile their very strident opinions with the Reds being better than predicted.

      • VaRedsFan

        It’s not hard to be better than predicted…if you set the bar low enough.

      • Gpod

        so if that is how you determine how good a manager is…..check out the preseason ESPN / MLB network prognosticators, then at the end of the year if you are a few games above their prediction: “extend the manager!” The Giants were not supposed to be very good this year & they are on their way to the best record in the NL and the playoffs (that IS a good way to exceed expectations) ….meanwhile in Cincinnati, a couple games over 500 (maybe) and a season ending crash…that’s good enough, bring him back for more of the same

      • RojoB

        Enjoy your chuckling greenmtred

        It’s the only thing enjoyable about this news. You’ll have plenty to chuckle over in the next two years of Bell domination. but after this thread, no more from me til he’s gone

      • Roger Garrett

        Starting pitching,the 2 rookies,career years from Wink and Casty and a great year from Votto are why they were better then predicted.Nobody would have expected one of these more less all of them.May never happen again.Playing in a bad division with one minor league team all year long and another one joining the fun at the trade deadline sure helped out.Reds won despite Bell and not because of him.He makes too many bad decisions and not because they turn out bad its because they were just bad to begin with.Good decisions can turn out bad but they are still good.Maybe we should ask this question.Did Bell helps us win more or less games and what will he do in the future.I am one of those who don’t believe a manager wins or loses 20 games or so cause players play.I do believe he can make a difference in a few wins or loses.Maybe 4 or 5.So which is it did he help us win more or less and does that matter?

      • oklared

        Exactlly my thoughts, if team overperformed the boards projections preseason, even with injuries and they still ridicule manager, there is no win here for manager.

      • greenmtred

        How else do you evaluate a manager? Do you base it on the opinions of fans ranting at RLN? The players seem to like him. And, thanks, RojoB: I continue to enjoy the chuckling. I recommend it. You guys should avoid blood-pressure cuffs for awhile.

      • greenmtred

        And I hope you’ll reconsider: I often disagree with, but always enjoy your comments.

    • Steven Ross

      Well said Scott. My biggest complaint is Bell doesn’t utilize any speed. We rarely steal bases. I don’t see much hit and run or taking the extra base. Never calls for the obvious bunt. Only Naquin gets it. Left side of the infield is wide open yet nobody drops down the easy hit.

      Bell seems to sit back and wait for the 3-run jack. Rarely does Bell try to manufacture runs. The old get ‘um on, get ‘um over, get ‘um in is something Larkin talks about all the time but I don’t see Bell doing it. Unfortunately, I see two more years of mediocrity with this team.

      • Joe P.

        Steven +1000

        Bell’s game management style is non-aggressive and laid back, just like his personality.

      • greenmtred

        I like varied offensive game, too, Steven. The thing is, you need the right personnel to execute it. The Reds have little speed, and watching them attempt to bunt is less than edifying. Bunting also–fun though a good squeeze bunt may be–doesn’t fare well as a strategy when subjected to analysis. And, Roger: yes, the Reds did better than expected because some players performed well. Of course, the 3 best hitters all missed extended time, and Suarez, who for some years has been a vital run-producer, fell off a cliff. And the bullpen was the worst in baseball for half the year. And the assumed #1 starter got off to a miserable start. And the presumed starting centerfielder barely played. Teams win and lose mainly because of player performance.

    • Redsvol

      I don’t think Bell is a bad manager. He has made some decisions I wouldn’t have based on the roster but I don’t pretend to know the inner-workings of the clubhouse or relationship with the front office. I do feel like the bullpen was set up to be mediocre this year and was essentially a joke for 4 months of the season – a really long time to have not been fixed. 3 really good rookies developed under this coaching staff. I would have preferred 1 more but was not meant to be. Serious injuries 6 out of 8 offensive starters is also no trivial loss. We could do a whole lot worse.

  10. Gpod

    Only the Reds can reward a manager in the midst of a total season ending meltdown

    • Jim Walker

      They will say the decision was already taken which may actually be part of the problem on the field. Folks were probably discussing and fussing about all these organizational decisions the last several weeks while Rome was burning.

    • greenmtred

      I doubt that that’s true, considering their overall record which, even if they lose all of the remaining games, will be similar to or better than what was expected. Few people would feel it to be just if they were fired after meeting expectations.

  11. JB WV

    If the FO had moved quickly to bolster the bullpen much earlier Bell would look a lot better. Losing Winker was a bigger blow to the offense than I thought it would be. As Doug mentions, all managers are inferior to fans. It’s, as usual, a critical off season for Krall. The needs are obvious. The resigning of Bell isn’t nearly as important as reloading the roster.

  12. docproc

    I am speechless. It’s a dark, rainy, and gloomy day here in Greater Cincinnati and the game was cancelled.
    Matches my mood about this news.

  13. Gpod

    For those Bell supporters: I can remember twice this season when he put pitchers in high leverage innings (and they blew the game) only to have those pitchers DFA’d a few days later…..if a pitcher is so bad they are on the verge of being released, they should be no where near the mound in a game you have a real chance of winning. The decision to use Cabrera (who is in a brutal slump)in a spot yesterday with basically the season on the line was inexcusable

    • greenmtred

      And I can remember–you’re referring to Antone and Sims, right?–that in the days leading up to that, the experts here were bashing him for not using them a lot more.

      • Luke J

        Um, when were Antone and Sims DFA’d? Clearly it wasn’t them being talked about. lol

      • RojoB

        Romano, Doolittle, Brach are at least three

      • Chris Holbert

        Hembree, Bedrosian, Fulmer, to name a few more

      • greenmtred

        Ah. DFA’d. I apologize for my inattention. Clearly I’m on high alert, given the gravity of the current circumstances. Of course, my comment about Antone and Sims is accurate–just not as an answer to Gpod. A list of all of our prescriptions for player usage through the season would belie our reputations as great managers-in-waiting.

  14. Chris Holbert

    Like it is said, “if you build it they will come”, For the Reds, ” if no one else wants you, come here and we will play you regularly”.

    • Michael E

      Ouch. That does have some truth to it. If you have “experience” we’ll keep rolling you out there no matter how awful you are or whether higher upside prospects are available and much more affordable.

  15. Dan

    I wonder how much sway Buddy Bell has with the bigwigs?

    Castellini just can’t get enough of guys who are “part of the Reds family.”

    The 2 best Reds managers of my lifetime had no connection to the Reds at all before getting hired – Sparky Anderson and Lou Piniella.

    • Pablo

      Davey Johnson was good in his brief tenure

  16. AllTheHype

    Might as well trade Barrero because he’s not playing over Farmer or anyone else in 2022.

    • Alan Horn

      Include Lopez and Moreta also. I fail to understand how anyone of sane mind has watched what has went on this season and still thinks this is the right direction.

    • Chris Holbert

      From non tender to Starting SS..only in Cincinnati

      • Roger Garrett

        Yep and I love the guy but he has had one good month and is still below a league average player at 31 years of age.Barrero is now being told to play center.Senzel all over again.

      • VaRedsFan

        1 good month?
        No 1 great month, followed by a good month, all resulting from his batter’ stance change. He might be the the 2nd coming of Justin Turner. Who wouldn’t want Justin Tunrer’s stats from the last 5 years on your team?

      • 2020ball

        I’ve liked the adjustments I’ve seen from Farmer, and guys do change stances and see more success while at the MLB level, though its rare. That said, Turner always had more power so its a dubious comp IMO. Your point is well made though.

      • Roger Garrett

        @VaReds Fan.You will get to find out and I hope he turns into Justin Turner but I expect Tina rather then Justin.

      • Michael E

        I expect Ted Turner…at a baseball game (always was found asleep by the TBS cameraman).

      • Bob Purkey

        Farmer is NOT the problem with the Reds. There are about 20 other reasons before I would even contemplate Farmer being the problem

    • Bet on Red

      Barrero has had two shots at the show now. Hasn’t broken .200 avg. No homeruns. Deprived the team of their centerfielder. Of course he is riding the pine for Farmer, bell or no bell.

      • Mark Moore

        I’m also not completely sold on Barrero. I think the potential is there and the opportunities should be presented. But as BoR noted, we’ve not seen the goods just yet.

      • LDS

        They have to play regularly to develop. As someone above noted, without injuries, India would likely have been sent down. They had to play him and now he’s a contender for ROY. They should have played Stephenson more than they did. All the young guys are playing out of position, Schrock, Barrero, et. al. Say what you will but Bell isn’t the guy. May know baseball. Clueless about managing.

      • LDS

        BTW, not necessarily sold on Barrero either. But as structured, we’ll never know. As I said back in July, I would have struck a deal with the Rockies for Story. Send them Suarez, Senzel, whoever and make him a good offer to extend. But the Reds aren’t oriented to winning as the last 16+ years have shown.

      • Roger Garrett

        Dude is 23 years old and has 94 at bats in the big leagues.Thats not 2 shots thats just a bad month for Suarez.

      • CI3J

        Barrero has not had a “shot” this season. He has 27 ABs, and has started, what, 4 games? If that’s what you consider a “shot”, then you probably would have given up on more than half the players in the Baseball Hall of Fame before they became legends.

        Barrero has been jerked around by Bell. When he came up, he was one of the hottest hitters in all of AAA. And what does Bell do? Sit him on the bench so he can “cool off”, then give him a few pinch hit chances here and there against bullpen pitchers throwing with max effort each pitch. Then of course, when a kid who has lost his confidence and is no longer in his groove goes up there and doesn’t get a hit against these pitchers, Bell (and you) shrug your shoulders and say “Hey, I gave him a shot! Guess he’s still not ready.”

        Any competent manager would have given the SS position to Barrero the day he was promoted and let him play unless he showed you he couldn’t hack it. 50 ABs minimum, starting every day (unless he went something like 0-20 to begin with). Barrero was never given that chance. THAT’S what a real “shot” looks like.

      • Bet on Red

        TJ Friedl has had 4 or 5 at bats…. already homered, another hit and an RBI. Stepheson also homered early into his career. The batting is only part of it. Naquin is out due to his carelessness, and he nearly wiped out farmer last night. If they trade high on farmer, then fine make him next years SS, at least for the beginning. But the next 6 years? No, nothing he has done indicates he deserves that

      • Chris Holbert

        The fallacy that he took out the CF is ludicrous..

      • AllTheHype

        Under 100 PAs total, and some fans want to write a top prospect off. Beyond funny. Guess those same fans would have written off India after a bad April with only 4 xBH.

      • Bet on Red

        Am I implying he did it deliberatly, no of course not. There is no denying however that he collided with Naquin, Naquin left the game and was on the IL when winker returned after not playing him again.

        Of course maybe Stephenson just gave Naquin covid instead…..

      • CI3J

        Barrero after his first 4 ABs was hitting .500 with a double. After that, he only started 2 more games in the next 10 days before being sent back to AAA.

        Barrero plays better defense than Farmer. That is not up for debate. Farmer is a solid but unspectacular defender who is a horrible hitter (career OPS+ of 80 with 864 PA). We know what we have in Farmer, which is a bench player who can play serviceable defense at most positions. He would not be starting on any serious contending team. Barrero was doing really special things in AAA. He has power, speed, contact, agility, a great batting eye, and played awesome defense.

        A player like that does not come to MLB and suddenly forget how to play baseball, he just needs a chance to play and adjust to the new environment. Bell refused to give him that chance, instead sticking with Mr. 80 OPS+ who is not and will never be the future of the Cincinnati Reds at SS. Is Barrero that guy? Could be, but we need to let him play and show us what he’s got. That’s what any competent team would do when promoting one of their best prospects.

      • PTBNL

        I Bet (on Red) this guy never played shortstop a day in his life and has no concept of “taking out the CF”. That was not Barrerro’s fault. The play was in front of Tyler Naquin. He needs to call it LOUDLY or get out of the way. Running back on the ball is extremely difficult. I broke my leg on a similar play because of the outfielder not saying a word.
        Dumbest of dumb comments on here by far over the last 5 years.

      • Chris Holbert

        AA played everyday at SS. AAA played everyday at SS. MLB..played barely, and then oh,, here is your OF glove….

      • BZ

        This logic is what baffles me with some fans. Barrero is considered a top prospect by everyone and has struggled to hit over .200 in 94 at-bats. His most recent “shot” involved Farmers paternity leave. Let’s take a look at this failed “shot”:

        Game 1: Game-winning hit in the top of the 9th against the Cardinals.
        Game 2: Pinch hit for by Cabrera in the exact same situation he succeeded in the night before.
        Game 3: Benched.

        Some Reds fans quickly start yelling, “He’s a bust; write him off!” simply because he is considered good. It is the same thing with Senzel, a top prospect who struggled in about one season because he only hit .256 and got hurt. Once again, Reds fans start yelling, “He’s a bust; write him off!” Meanwhile, guys like Barnhart, Farmer, and Naquin have struggled to hit for years. Yet, they are unconditionally loved because they hit .256 and play average defense for one season simply because they are perceived as “hard-working underdogs”?

      • Bet on Red

        I will start with this. Cabrera should be DFA’ed, Honestly should have happened in today’s moves but with moose hurt…. got lucky. Barrero got a shot last season, blew it. came up again, had some lucky hits. but overall blew it. Maybe gets the starting Job next spring but after last year and this year’s Major league results, results mind you not projections, I am not benching a healthy player for him. Rare hits, Rare RBIs. Oh, defending Barrero with the MIA Senzel is a really really smart move. The call was Naquin’s, noone has indicated Naquin did not call him off.

      • burtgummer01

        Exactly!! A lot of people here have a mad crush on Barrero even though he has done exactly nothing in 2 opportunities.Farmer should play over him all day every day.
        Maybe the Reds were working on getting him prepared for cf

      • CI3J


        Now you are saying all of Barrero’s hits were “lucky”? Just admit you personally don’t like the guy and have nothing to support your stance with.

        Barrero was not given a “shot” this year. He is obviously a much improved player compared to what he was last year, as his AAA numbers show. But he was never given the chance to prove it a the MLB level.

        Barrero should have taken over SS from Farmer the day he came up and be allowed to play unless he showed he couldn’t. He is a better defender than Farmer, and will likely be a better hitter than Mr. 80 OPS+. He would also add a dimension on the basepaths which Farmer does not provide.

        Refusing to play Barrero every day at SS the day he came up was the wrong decision, and any other competent manager would have stuck him at SS and said “Ok, kid, here’s the keys. Show us what you got.” Because he would have to be really, really terrible to not be better than Farmer.

      • Luke J

        Oh boy @bet on red, where to start? You have been thoroughly shot down as clueless already, so I’ll only address the 2020 call up of Barrero. First, it wasn’t a call up because there was no minor league season. That’s important to remember. Second, Barerro had never played above single A. That was never designed to be a “shot” and anyone who thinks it was is clueless. That was trying to get an elite young prospect some live at bats in a season otherwise cancelled.

        But then again, if you think this season has been a legitimate shot, then you can’t be helped.

      • 2020ball

        You’ve got to perform when given the opportunity if you want your shot in this league, end of story. Switching a guy thats had some success with a guy just based on potential or as a desperation move is not how things work in the bigs, especially a team in a playoff chase. Barrero will get his shot, he’s earned it with his performance in the minors. I’d probably have liked to see him play more since he’s been here as much as the next guy, but there’s really nothing Bell did wrong given the timing of everything. Shrock has hit when played, so you give him more opportunities, thats just how it is.

      • Bet on Red

        1 AB sometime is all your shot is. Barrero has had more then that. Fredl, once again, within two at bats, had his first HR. He has continued to produce Runs and hits since then. Crickets from the Barrero batting line. Farmers ave is .090 higher, he plays passible D, (which I will admit at SS Barrero is the better of the two at SS D). Oh, and he hits home runs!!!!. I do not see Fredl fans on here complaining, why ? cause when Friedl came up he produced, which is going to increase the likelihood of his use. Barrero is borderline bust/AAAA player, and the time to find out for sure in April and May 2022, not with 11 games remaining in a playoff chase where he would be replacing a player that produces.

      • Daytonnati

        I think a “shot” is playing everyday without fear of making a mistake.

      • Old-school

        @ Bet on Red

        Billy Hamilton got 5 years and 2000 at bats
        Geno Saurez got 4 years and 2000 at bats
        Jose Peraza got 3 years and 1500 at bats.

        Jon India and Tyler Stephenson were ;eft for dead after 80 bats in May?

        Kyle Farmer is 31 and was awful in March April and May nad June but kept playing due to injuries and about at bat 300 in July and had a Barry Bonmds month with a wRC+ of 200

        How can you say Barrero has had a “shot” getting 5 interrupted at bats a week when the player you say should play over him was handed 400 consecutive at bats at age 31 due to injuries and has spent the l;ast 6 years failing miserably with the same interrupted occasional rare at bat and no regular playing time? Kyle Farmer got ran out there over and over and over with now 500 at bats not based on performance but on desperation

        Jose barrero is the Reds SS and will get 1500 at bats the next few years.

      • Joe Atkinson

        I think what people are forgetting was that Barrero wasn’t SUPPOSED to play at all last year; no one considered his bat Major League ready going into the season (glove was another story). He got a shot late in the season because before the season, the front office decided that Freddy Galvis was an acceptable answer at shortstop, and that strategy … to put it kindly, it did not work out.

        This year, he went back to the minors, did everything you could possibly ask of him there, then finally got called up to sit the bench. He’s played in 13 games this year and had 29 plate appearances … you’re writing him off based the equivalent of his first two weeks. How were Kyle Tucker’s first two weeks in the bigs? Do you see the Mariners moving on from Jarred Kelenic?

      • Melvin

        Yeah. Barrero needs to play every day to get his “shot”. In my mind Aquino too for that matter.

      • Michael E

        I agree with CI3J on Barrero. He did not get and has not gotten any “shot” at the MLB level. You can’t play someone sporadically, getting a start once or twice a week and expect anything from that.

        He needed/needs at least 6 weeks of near every day starts.

        If you started on Tuesday, bench next day, PH next day, bench next day, started on Saturday and PH for late inning, PH on Sunday, yeah, you’d be pressing in every sporadic at bat.

        A prospect needs to know they’ll be given a REAL shot, that means upwards of 100 un-interrupted ABs or a month’s worth of games. If you can’t or won’t do that just leave him in AAA for those ABs and watch his trade value slowly go down with age.

        If they don’t like him or think he is a AAAA player, then trade him for another young(er) prospect.

        Personally, he should be told to prepare to be the MLS SS starter from opening day in 2022 and that he’ll get 100+ ABs before ANY further decisions or changes are made. Give him an off-season plan and judge him in spring training. If he eats his way to Bartolo Colon size, then all bets off, but otherwise stick to the promise and play the man.

      • Joe P.

        I agree with CI3J when he wrote this:

        “Barrero should have taken over SS from Farmer the day he came
        up and be allowed to play unless he showed he couldn’t. He
        would also add a dimension on the basepaths which Farmer does
        not provide.”

        And here’s the other point regarding the Farmer/Barrero debate. All David Bell had to do was put Farmer at 3B and put Barrero at SS. Bell stubbornly stuck with the struggling Moustakas/Suarez combo at 3B for far too long.

        I’m not naive in thinking that they can trade both guys, so they need Suarez to improve and trade Moustakas.

        Now, going into the off-season, I hope Suarez realizes that he has to make adjustments. He can’t hit under .200 and be a starter. No way, no how. He has to adjust to where he puts the ball on the bat, cuts down on the strikeouts and hits the other way and up the middle. He has to sacrifice a portion of that HR swing to hit for average.

        As far as Moustakas goes, I hope they can trade him in a Homer Bailey type of deal. Maybe include a prospect or two so they can get a chunk of his payroll off the books. The longer they keep his $ on the books, the longer it will be before they can solidify the roster. If they can’t move him, they will have to let some guys go – guys that they would otherwise keep.

      • Luke J

        @Bet on red you keep mentioning Friedl. Do you realize how bad that looks for you? Barrero did the same thing in his first 2 starts. 2 hits including a double his first game up. Then benched for a couple weeks, then 2 hits in next game including a game winning double off the wall. He was exactly as effective as Friedl out the gate. Just wait until Friedl sits the bench and only pinch hits one or twice a week. His numbers will regress just like Barrero’s did (and how Mike Trout’s would in that scenario).

      • Votto4life

        If you don’t Barrero is a major league shortstop fine. I think you are wrong but fine.

        To say the Barrero is to blame for Naquin’s injury is just ridiculous. If you said that to someone in the game they would laugh you out of the room.

    • Daytonnati

      Bell looks at Farmer and sees himself as a player.

      • Jim Walker

        Think this is very possible. Same with favoring Barnhart over Stephenson. The scheme that somehow they would allow enough fewer runs with Barnhart playing to win should have gone out the window at the latest when Winker and then Naquin went down. Just to be clear Stephenson’s OPS is better against RH pitching than Barnhart’s and the team was dying for offense.

      • greenmtred

        Interesting that RLN is increasingly becoming a psychology forum. Barry Larking thinks highly of Farmer, I know, I know, being a HOF shortstop doesn’t mean his opinion is worth anything, but I still find it interesting. Barrero will get his shot. He’s a rookie. India only got his shot because Moustakis got hurt, as others have pointed out. Hard to test this, but I bet few teams would have handed him the starting job at 2nd if Moustakis had been healthy.

      • Chris Holbert

        Larkin likes him and thinks he is a gamer. did he ever say he should be the SS shortstop. I believe I have heard him say he ahs a good job. Has anyone ever asked him on camera, who should be starting Farmer or Barrero.

      • Melvin

        I’ve heard him say on camera that he thinks Barrero should play every day and strongly hinted Farmer to 3B.

      • greenmtred

        Larkin has, a number of times, lauded plays Farmer has made. I’m not suggesting that he’s the shortstop of the future, but he has clearly done a good job in field, a passable job at the plate, and has provided stability. He and India turn some very nice DP’s. And the bottom line: the Reds may not be realistically fighting for a playoff spot now, but they were until recently. I doubt that many teams in that situation would pull a solid player in favor of an untried rookie. Barrero hasn’t had lots of opportunities this season, certainly, and not playing regularly might require some adjustment on his part. Of course, the same can be said for Cabrera, who has a good 14 year MLB career. Yes, he’s in a slump. Maybe he should be starting everyday since it’s hard to come off of the bench from time to time?

  17. Mark Moore

    I’ve said all I am going to or need to say about the DTB situation. I agree with some (like Tom M.) that he was handcuffed to a certain extent with the roster. But it was his roster to manage and the results of several (especially the repetitive 3rd basemen) speak for themselves. Yes, Kyle Farmer had a magical year, but count me in the crowd that says that isn’t sustainable or repeatable.

    We grit our teeth for however we can manage to finish. We hope for a relatively swift agreement to the CBA. We all want to see baseball in 2022 and especially the chance for our youngsters to prove their mettle.

    Until then, we wait …

  18. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I always look to try to keep an open mind on things. Not just “give the benefit of the doubt”, but why would someone do this? For, it wouldn’t be my first choice.

    The only thing I can tell is it seems like the “locker room” is more “emotional” these days. But, that comes with “winning”. For, I wouldn’t care if you have all great “locker room guys” in the locker room, if the team isn’t winning, that locker room is probably going to be a sad case.

    And, maybe they think Bell is a big part of the reason why the locker is much better. I mean, other teams were actually talking about “Watch out for Cincinnati” and “They’re a good team”. You never heard that before.

    Also, part of the calculation is, “Who’s available?” Is there anyone else out there better than Bell? If you believe they are better, one has to ask why aren’t they managing right now?

    The biggest thing I have on Bell is his use of the bullpen. The thing is, to me, that should be some of the most basic of baseball strategy. When the bullpen is your weakness, and you have a reliever out there who just had a clean inning, you don’t replace them!

    In short, from what I see with Bell, I don’t believe he won us any games. If anything, I believe he lost us games because of his bullpen usage.

    But, is there a better manager available? If so, we should get him.

    What I’m hoping the Reds will do is lock up Mahle and Winker. I would look to try to extend Nick C. Provided you can make a trade with another team for something we need, “Bye bye, Barnhardt or Stephenson.” I mean, Stephenson deserves more playing time. And, Barnhardt has earned the right to keep starting.

    I wait to lock up India as well as Stephenson if he stays. I always want to look at how the other teams respond and adjust to them, then see how the player adjust back. If the two stay where they are next season, then I lock them up.

    I might have heard that Stephenson has been taking some outfield flies recently. Premonition?

    Pretty much, our off-season work is pretty much the same as last year, I believe. Confirm CF, SS, and 3rd. It’s just different characters.

    • Daytonnati

      Speaking of emotional locker rooms. Did anyone else see Machado confront Tatis, Jr in the San Diego dugout the other night? Is there anyone on this iteration of the Reds who would do that? Votto is probably the only player with the gravitas, but it does not seem to be in his make-up. We haven’t seen a clubhouse cop since Scott Rolen. I think Moose was designated for the role, but his performance level gives him no credibility. Castellanos could have been the guy, but why bother if he is leaving?

  19. enfueago

    I’m not particularly a David Bell fan. The players seem to like him and play hard. I have complaints about a lot of his decisions about who plays but I’m not sure how much of that is on him. The record may be better than the projections but I’m not sure the manager gets credit for a solid and durable starting rotation. Any team that gets this much contribution from its starters should be pretty good and it just highlights how very different this team could have been with a bullpen.

    • greenmtred

      I agree that we have a strong tendency to inflate the importance of the manager. For one thing, we can more plausibly imagine doing the job ourselves than we can imagine playing shortstop. Managers we consider good–always from the past or with other teams–have good rosters. Sparky wasn’t particularly successful when he managed weak teams. How could he be? Bell’s Reds had some strengths–decent starting pitching, as you point out–and some glaring weaknesses and injuries to key players. If managers get credit, he should get some. Despite making decisions with which we disagree.

  20. TR

    I’m not surprised that David Bell’s option was picked up, but I am surprised it’s for two years. But, then again, the Bell family is well connected in the world of Cincinnati baseball culture. Real change will only come with new majority ownership.

  21. steve d

    As a Reds fan since 1961 when I was 7 I have seen the team go through several ups and downs. I always stayed loyal and have gone to many games over the years. Some of the managers have been better than others record-wise, but I have never been as frustrated as I have been during Bell’s tenure. The obsession with handedness, double switching and not giving young players a chance along with the bullpen usage is maddening. How can a young player develop any confidence or situational skills when not given a chance? Continuing to play old veterans whose skills are declining and picking up others teams’ retreads while not trying the young guys is ludicrous. I’m not saying they all will be stars, but let them show us what they have got to offer. In the business world when things get slow you try new things and adjust. Tampa Bay and Oakland come to mind. Dan said in an earlier post “he is so bland and uninspiring”. I agree with that whole heartedly. Sometimes players, as we all do in life, need a fire lit under them. He’s not the guy!! I will not attend another game under this management.

    • Jim t

      Steve d I have been a fan since 1960 when I was 7. I have lived through many worse seasons then this one. Up until the middle of August the team was playing well considering they had to overcome many injuries and a bullpen that was terrible. While I wish they could have sustained their pace through September i think the injury to Winker and a few of our guys cooling off was a bit much to overcome.

      I’m a lifetime fan and will continue to be. I have season tickets and will renew again next year. I am a red fan forever.

    • RiverCity Redleg

      You just described to a tee everyone’s exact complaint (including my own) about Dusty. You seemed to have gotten over that.

      I am not a particular Bell fan, but it is what it is. It seems that 95% of the managers out there have the same behavior. Bottom line is that we need better players. The two most glaring weaknesses of this team in the offseason were SS and Bullpen and the FO failed to address either of them.

      • Joe P.

        CF was also a weakness. Senzel was the starter and he got hurt again early. Akiyama never produced. The lack of productivity from the outfield has to be addressed.

        Winker out again. Seems like he’s out of action too often. I’m probably in the minority here, but I’m ok with trading him. Sign him to a 2 year deal (before he’s eligible to become a free agent) and then entertain trade offers for him while his value is high.

  22. RedsGettingBetter

    Will the agreement terms be known at some point? How much Bell will earn? Hopefully there is a team optout in next season…

  23. Chris Holbert

    Maybe this “breaking news” has been known internally for a few weeks now. Could that be a factor in the letdown

    • Melvin

      My thoughts too. What players say to the media about what they think about their manager is not necessarily what they truly believe deep down inside.

  24. Mark A Verticchio

    No manager deserves a 2 year extension after his team has melted down as bad as the 2021 Reds, it’s that simple. I guess Bell knew all along and felt no pressure to win, that is now obvious. The fans need to quit coming to watch this clown show, stay home and save your money. I hope next years opening day crowd is around 20,000 or less. This team doesn’t deserve much support. Bringing Bell back for 2 years is the biggest mistake I have seen in sports for a long time if not ever.

  25. Melvin

    For me this just confirms what I’ve suspected for quite some time. That is that David Bell makes the crazy decisions he does often because he has no fear of losing his job. As a matter of fact he may very well have one of the most secure positions in baseball. I fully expect now that DB will be the manager of the Cincinnati Reds as long as Big Bob is calling the shots… it or not. Not that Big Bob cares a whole lot about what fans think but I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if we see one of the biggest fan revolts in Reds history.

  26. Votto4life

    Well this is certainly shocking. I guess I’m mildly disappointed.

    My concern all along was not the Reds firing David Bell, but who they would hire to replace him. I thought they could and likely would do worse.

    Maybe we won’t see a wholesale repudiation of analytics after all.

    I’m sure this has been a difficult year for David Bell losing his brother and all.

    Anyway, the decision has been made, now time to focus on the 2022 roster. Hopefully, the front office will have some surprises for us in that regard as well.

  27. Eddie

    This is the news I didn’t want to hear nor read about. Bell manages as he has no care for the fans base nor the players who deserves a shot. Here we go again whole year of bad Suarez and moose even no true shortstop again. I’m not ready for 2022 now bc we be seeing a lot bad lineups and good relief pitchers only pitching one inning out of the pen

  28. Eddiek957

    To tell you the truth I’m kind of happy with the move. I’ve went through too many managers in my sixty years as a red fan. I think most of this team’s shortcomings were front office induced. They need to figure out a way to part with Akiyama. Aquino hasn’t been good since his first month. Yeah I can get behind this move hopefully like most things in life people improve with experience

  29. DataDumpster

    It seems an odd time to extend David Bell one day after WC2 went into the realm of extremely unlikely. Also, has ownership figured out what caused this team to play so poorly for a solid month now? It’s clear that every vestige of Dick Williams is being discarded (in spite of very good results in the minor league) and people are understandably not happy about it. Jim Walker also mentioned a very reasonable theory that Bell’s contract was already agreed well in advance. We are also told that players love David Bell because he sticks up for them and never criticizes them. Yea sure, but really good ballplayers like to win and if amateurs like us can spot how he manages by watching the game and looking up some stats, what about the guys actually on the field? How do our young players like it when they get hot and then get benched for several days, get substituted by a guy who is 0-20, get called up to ride the pine for a week of 1 or 2 ABs, etc. Seems like Bell is just evenly spreading the money around instead of having a development plan.

    Maybe the reason the team went into a deep slump is because the guys close to the action figured out or it got leaked that David Bell is being extended so say bye bye to any playoff action for the next 2 years at least. Maybe Joey agrees to be traded, sunk cost Moose gets paired up with one of our star pitchers to get off the books, etc. See, David Bell is the linchpin to this ownership making more money off this team. Winning is nice, but not essential to the ownership. Winning is very important but not possible for David Bell. Even Buddy knows that, he has the record to prove it.

    • Votto4life

      If players actually quit on the season because their manager is being extended, then it’s time to get rid of those players.

      • CI3J

        And replace them with who?

        Players are human too with emotions. They are not robots who show up to perform then collect a paycheck. I would absolutely be gutted if I knew I had to work for a boss I hated for another 2 years, a boss who could directly affect my market value based on how he decided to use me.

      • Votto4life

        I have worked in a lot of situations where I didn’t particularly like my boss. When it that has occurred, I either found a way to come to terms with it or I left my employer. I didn’t stop doing my job.

        Anyway by all accounts I have read, the players like David Bell.

    • Jim Walker

      I’d more guess that players’ futures and budget decisions were being discussed at the same time as the organizational reordering and 2022 contracts and players got wind of some of this.

      My original point was meant to be that with the team in the heat of a WC race, the organizational stuff should have been back burnered and all focus placed on helping these guys to the finish line. How would you feel if your major project had a chance to be a huge success but needed a little boost in the home stretch but the bosses were already consumed discussing the outline of the next big project?

  30. Max BRAGG

    I can’t believe Reds fans are upset you had this I___t as owners and Management group for years. They will not get any SMARTER, and THE MANAGER will not be better.

  31. burtgummer01

    For whatever reason people here ignore the fact that in 15 years under moneybags Bob only 4 seasons of .500 baseball and 0 playoff series wins
    People just want to whine about the current manager and ignore the real issues

    • RojoB

      Not ignoring it. Renewing Bell is a major symptom of just what you say

  32. DaveCT

    Oh, no. Significant seismic activity reported on RLN. Stay tuned.

    RML may still be safe, however.

    • Roger Garrett

      You right but we know Bob ain’t going to do anything different and we are looking for anything that may gives us some hope.Two guys quit in the minor league system that made major improvements.Reds have crashed and burned on the field so with Bell given an extension its kind of like well you know.I unlike Bell will not be back so good luck to all.

      • DaveCT

        I know, and I’m not discounting any of this group’s opinions (though I am a RML loyalist, first). I would not do that.

        My very small take on the recent changes is an absolute lack of leadership. Boddy quits/gets fired (do we even know?), and not a peep. No reset. No re-focus. Nothing. Krall may have strengths we don’t know about, but leadership isn’t one. Today’s GM’s have to lead in the marketing of the team to the public. Bobbleheads are not leading. At a crisis point (losing the wildcard, Boddy’s sudden departure) and Krall, nothing.

        Bell’s personality doesn’t bother me but one thing he is not is good at PR. And, simply, its not up to Joey, Nick C., Miley or Gray to provide this.

        Somebody has to LEAD.

      • DaveCT

        I know, and I’m not discounting any of this group’s opinions (though I am a RML loyalist, first). I would not do that.

        My very small take on the recent changes is an absolute lack of leadership. Boddy quits/gets fired (do we even know?), and not a peep. No reset. No re-focus. Nothing. Krall may have strengths we don’t know about, but leadership isn’t one. Today’s GM’s have to lead in the marketing of the team to the public. Bobbleheads are not leading. At a crisis point (losing the wildcard, Boddy’s sudden departure) and from Krall, nothing.

        Bell’s personality doesn’t bother me but one thing he is not is be good at PR. And, simply, its not up to Joey, Nick C., Miley or Gray to provide this.

        Somebody has to LEAD.

  33. Old-school

    The structure of the FO helps inform the Bell extension decision as well as inform the recent decisions regarding the exodus of Boddy and Gillman as Director of pitching and hitting coordinator. It begs the question who decided to move hitting and pitching development away from Boddy and Gillman? Who decided to re-up Bell should be obvious from the organizational hierarchy.

    It’s not Phil Castellini or Bob Castellini .They wouldn’t know a slider from a cutter or even basic mechanics of hitting. They do love the Reds 1970’s-90’s teams and players though and how they played the game. It’s not Nick Krall. Krall simply executes the marching orders given from the Senior leadership and doesn’t have the power. It’s not Shawn Pender or Brad Meador or Sam Grossman either.

    Look at the advisors:

    Barry Larkin:Senior advisor to President/COO and way up in the executive branch.
    Buddy Bell: Senior advisor to President of Baseball Operations
    Walt Jocketty: Executive advisor to the CEO
    Bill Doran:Special assistant, Player development
    Eric Davis: Special assistant, Player performance
    Mario Soto Special assistant, Player performance

    That group of ex players and executives share an ideology on how baseball should be played and who is qualified to implement that direction organization wide.Buddy Bell Barry Larkin, Bill Doran, Eric Davis, Mario Soto are all ex Reds who played in the 1980’s and share generational ideaologies about how the game should be played in very broad terms that resonate strongly with the ownership group. They are in very powerful advisory positions. The Bell Larkin and Doran families are also generational baseball icons in the city.

    Throw in more former players and Reds influencers who share that same generational view of “how baseball should be played”. You saw it in late August at the hall of fame ceremony and reunion. I’m sure all the old-timers got their views heard.

    Marty Brennaman, Chris Welsh, Jeff Brantley, Johnny Bench,George Foster and many many more.

    None of these old timers and generational greats who didn’t throw 99 mph or sell out for the home run and launch angle are going to agree with the approaches of Boddy and Turner Ward. They are also tired of new wave baseball guys with egos and branding who never played the game telling everyone how to pitch better and hit better.

    Bell is simply part of the insular family who can manage the players on the field as this new group moves things in a different direction. We actually saw an inning last week with a double, walk, pinch runner, bunt, pinch hitter and sac fly net a winning run. That told me things were already in motion to change.

    • SultanofSwaff

      THIS. One million times THIS!!!! Well said.

    • Michael E

      Very good take. I think analytics can be overblown and overused, but I also know that old school thinking won’t apply very well to todays game/players either. There has to be a mix to succeed.

      Just because Boddy and others were let go (they quit, but it was more about being made to feel unwanted by Reds), doesn’t mean things can’t improve. That said, I think most of us feel like a return to old ways that failed for decades and a way to save money. Maybe Boddy wanted a slew of new PCs and servers and high speed VPN connections and Castellini wanted to use wired phones and snail mail. I dunno.

      It feels like we’re about to take a big step back (after a nice step forward) in the player development/minor league coaching arena.

      As for 2022, there are three or four BAD contracts now on this team, including the once GOOD contract of Suarez. I don’t see them adding anything “good” in the off-season. The normal signing of come-back players and used up vets is in store and Bell will continue to overplay underperforming veterans that no longer deserve playing time.

    • Deafmix3

      Interesting take. But it is ownership’s fault if it can’t recognize in-house dysfunction. And if Krall is merely following orders from a dimwitted cabal, them he is an even sadder doofus than I thought. (And for the record, I am probably considered a sad doofus by many.) The cabal theory does explain the eerie vibe around this team, this year. This is a team administration that has some very bleak vibes. Bell is a zombie. He needed a mental health year-off after his brother died

  34. RojoB

    RLN you guys are all great. Truly passionate fans no matter what side of any argument you’re on.

    I love the Reds. I can’t stand their leaders. They are crushing the Reds legacy. They will continue to reap what they have sewn. In extending Bell they have again planted thistles, thinking that they have planted strawberries.

    I’m with Chad Dotson—the Reds are beyond hope of success until Castellini sells

    • 2020ball

      “RLN you guys are all great. Truly passionate fans no matter what side of any argument you’re on.”


  35. 2020ball

    Interesting timing on this as it seems best to have waited until the playoff chase was over. I don’t think Bell is any better or worse than any other managers we might find out there, and I certainly wouldn’t say he’s a great choice, but I’m fine with this. I learned with Dusty that sometimes all a good manager is is someone who can get his players to play for him. I’d like to see better fundamentals on defense from this team and thats something I personally hope to see some improvement on in the future.

    As for in game moves, I think a lot of that gets blown out of proportion, i.e. if something goes right he got lucky and if something goes wrong he’s dumb for not being able to predict the future. But thats a difference in opinion I guess. What I see as more of an issue with this team is what the FO allows the team to do, and who they decide to roster on this team. I’d personally direct more of my anger toward them than the manager, but to each his or her own I guess.

    • Melvin

      Since we now know David Bell is pretty close to Big Bob, at least in my mind there isn’t much doubt, isn’t it reasonable to think he has a lot of input in the decisions the FO makes? Maybe he has as much or more than the GM.

      • David

        Castellini signs the checks, as the majority ownership partner. I have no idea what the ownership partners discuss regarding the team. They DO own the team, and it is theirs to operate as they wish.
        ML Baseball teams are selling for north of ONE BILLION DOLLARS these days. I have no idea who has that kind of investment money in Cincinnati, should Castellini sell out. I think it is a real possibility that the Reds may soon move out of Cincinnati, if ownership changes hands. Be careful what you wish for.
        I think as a “baseball” team owner, Castellini leaves a lot to be desired. He may (well, he is) quite successful in his line of work, but I think he is also WAY down the list of owners who have a lot of financial reserve. I don’t think the Reds’ are poor, but the owner of the Mets is estimated to be worth north of $14 billion.
        Money alone cannot guarantee winning, but it does help…sometimes.

      • Jim Walker

        @David, In recent days with talk of trying to get the Castellini family to sell the Reds, I’ve thought about the possibility they might leave Cincinnati. I’ve realized as long as I can afford internet and a subscription to a service that carries their games, I would probably still follow the team and not give a hoot about where they played their home games (OK, I’m retired and a night owl so time zone is really no factor to me).

        I live about an hour’s drive from GABP but haven’t been there for a number of years. Given my wife is not a sports fan, the likelihood is I’ll never be back there for a baseball game. But I support the team through my streaming subscription fees just as much as the fans who go to the game. Such is life.

  36. Jim t

    I guess for me it’s very simple. At the beginning of the year I had the reds finishing below 500. I saw a aging Votto, starting pitchers were suspect, rookies and a few unproven vets dotted the line up and the bullpen with the trades was very weak. Factor in the injuries and the front office unwillingness to make any moves until the trade deadline and you have a sub 500 team. Bell overcame many obstacles to keep this group in contention. For me until recently I enjoyed watching every night. I still watch but the enjoyment has diminished. Should be a interesting off season. We have some pieces and we have some holes. With a few moves we can contend. I believe it all starts with a commitment from management to sign Nick C. If we don’t do that it makes little difference who the manager is we will not win. We will be in wait until next year mode holding tryouts in mid June for our minor leaguers.

    • Indy Red Man

      I wouldn’t call Castillo, Gray, and Mahle suspect? They did start with DeLeon and Hoffman in the rotation, but considering Flaherty was hurt most of the year our rotation was better then the Cards.

      • Jim t

        Mahle was 2-2 in 2020 shortened season. In 2019 he was 3-12. Prior to 2020 he was never above 500. That’s Deleon, Hoffman and Mahle. I’d say that is suspect.

      • Old-school

        Your argument rests on SP total wins.
        Reds offense in 2019 and 2020 worst in MLB and pretty established winning games isnt the best metric to measure performance of SP. Castillo hasn’t had his best year but hes a good pitcher. Hes 7-15 or something close and he certainly earned 4 or 5 those losses in early year.
        Mahle at GABP struggles but hes a top 20-25 pitcher in the NL. Maybe top 15. Other MLB teams would give up the moon to have him. Just look at the giants this year in their park with ex Reds Gausman and Disco.

      • Jim t

        Old school I’m not saying he didn’t have a good 2021. I’m saying at beginning of the year based on prior results he was suspect. In 2019 he was 3–12 with a over 5 ERA. In 2020 he was 2-2 in 10 starts.

    • Alan Horn

      I agree on Castellanos. We can’t replace him without trading one or more of our top starters. I worry about Winker holding up health wise going forward also, but I agree, the best move for next season is to sign Castellanos. If we do that, everything else will fall in place way more easily.

      • DaveCT

        Absolutely. Nick can play, he can lead (when Manfred isn’t interfering), he is a stand up guy, and he understands his commitment to … guess who … the fans.

        Sign him. If the money is fair, I betcha he’d like it

      • Michael E

        No chance Nick stays a Red. He’ll want about double what the Reds will offer. You might as well forget about him.

        I just hope the Reds find a way to dump a mediocre vet or at least trade one for a one-year-less contract mediocre vet.

        Given their inaction this past off-season (well they dumped contracts of solid players), I see no reason to believe they want to do anything be lower payroll again this off-season before maybe increasing again in 2023.

        Bottom line, feel free to write off next year and do NOT buy any tickets or Reds merchandise.

    • Luke J

      I simply don’t see how Votto reinventing himself, the rookies overperforming, and the starting pitching being as good as they should be, is Bell’s doing. In fact, India only broke out because Bell’s guy Moustakas got hurt. Stephenson was under utilized all year. Much of the overperforming was in spite of Bell, not because of him. So the Reds doing better than you predicted simply means your predictions were off and some unforeseen things happened. Not that Bell overperformed.

  37. Indy Red Man

    I just hope Bell can improve? Loyalty to players is one thing, but he managed Vlad the other night like we were 14 games out and he had to take one for the team. Its September and its a must win and you have 10 guys in the pen. Cmon already? 5 runs and could’ve been 8? Idk?

    Almost everyone on RLN seems to think Larkin would be a terrible manager, but Idk why? He’s a disciple of small ball and going the other way. I’m impressed with him as an announcer and he always played with a high baseball IQ. Experience? No, but he could figure it out.

    Well we are where we are. Its been a weird year. A month ago it looked like we should have the WC2 put away with a week to go and really line up our pitching. Instead the Cards pushed us down on the playground again and stole our lunch money. What else is new?

    • Melvin

      I personally like Larkin. He may be a bust. That’s definitely a possibility. On the other hand he may be very good and manage the Reds for 20+ years. He has a lot of good qualities going for him. Unfortunately we won’t know now any time soon unless Big Bob sells the team and the new owner fires DB. New ownership would be great. 🙂

    • Joe P.

      Bell got a 2 year extension, but we know what that really means. Reds start poorly in 2022 and he’ll be fired before he can finish another argument with an ump.

  38. David

    A few years ago, Craig Counsell was interviewed for the job as Manager of the Tampa Bay Rays. He discussed this on an interview, and was amazed at how thoroughly the Tampa Bay organization had embraced “advanced metrics” in terms of evaluating the players throughout their organization.
    In case you might not have noticed, the Rays are doing quite well this year, competing in the same division as two of the richest franchises in baseball, the Red Sox and the Yankees.
    Craig Counsell now manages the Brewers and ….surprise! they are leading the National League Central…in what many thought would be a rebuilding year. Many had expected them to finish 3rd or 4th.
    My uneducated guess is that the Brewers, without much fanfare, are now probably using advanced metrics to look at ALL their talent, in their organization.
    I think that Counsell manages very differently, in subtle ways, than David Bell. But still, a lot of basic manager decisions are not really “metrics” based.
    And frankly, I have no idea what the Reds are doing. I think Castellini is still talking to Jocketty and getting advice from him. And they probably want more “veteran presence” next year. Krall is, in my opinion, not the sharpest knife in the drawer. And I think Dick Williams (the younger) was probably forced out due to the big contracts he took on (Moustakas, Aikyama, etc) that have been a bust. Miley and Gray, on the other hand, have done nicely.
    There is now actually some real talent in the Reds’ minor league system (no thanks to Jocketty), but if the ML team Field Manager refuses to use it, then….well, who really knows what is going on.
    Maybe next year will be different. Hope springs eternal.

    • Chris Holbert

      Advanced metrics did not say pick up Cabrera and Deshields, and play Heineman and Freeman…

  39. SOQ

    Old School. I hope you’re right. I personally am a big fan of “small ball”. The game is much more exciting and enjoyable than watching the “3 outcome” game. The players know that Bell has their backs, so I don’t think this decision has had any effect on how they are playing. But I agree with comments above that the team needs leadership. C’mon Joey, Step Up!

    • Old-school

      I dont think the exodus of Boddy means the Reds are dead.
      Personally, I think Boddy has destroyed more arms and more careers than anyone in history. Every kid over 10 years old and his Dad now wants to bust the radar gun and buy weighted balls and throw in the offseason after playing a full season in a “velocity program”. Every prospect showcase is about velocity. Every 17 yo is trying to throw 5 mph harder.

      Velocity, torque and spin rates might get more hitters out, but the chase for that destroys elbows. Ask 2 time Tommy John recipient and Boddy disciple TJ Antone.

      • Alan Horn

        Good post. More injuries than anytime in my 73 years.

      • Melvin

        I think Boddy is very good and don’t like to see him go. However I would like to see pitchers being taught how to get batters out without throwing so many pitches per AB.

      • Michael E

        Amen Melvin. What is with getting 0-2 and then wasting 3 pitches? Stupidity.

        If I were manager I wouldn’t “waste” any pitches at all. I get so tired of every other hitter getting to 3-2 against us. No wonder we have to use a horrible bullpen so often.

        Maybe they need bonus prize paid out to the SP and manager when a complete game is spun? Maybe a bonus if they can go 8 innings?

      • old-school

        The 0-2 counts that go to 3-2 are by design. Boddy and Derek Johnson subscribe to the philosophy that no contact is better than soft contact. They are literally trying to get swings and misses and chasing rather than pitch to contact. Sonny Gray and Tyler Mahle want swings and misses and they will gladly throw 94 pitches in 5 innings and walk a few if they can get K’s and high chase rates. Wade Miley is the opposite. here it is, hit it but softly but becasue of mixing speeds and location hitters cant barrel it very often and he gets quick outs. IMO, that s also why Amir Garrett struggles and there is hope in the off-season. He quit throwing a 2 seam fastball/sinker that was designed to get soft contact and ground balls and went for all strikeouts with 2 pitch repertoire -4 seam FB and Slider. Hitters know that and take the walk or sit on the 3-1 fastball or 4th slider in a row at 2-2.

      • greenmtred

        Old-School, my impression is that it’s pretty much standard operating procedure for MLB pitchers to “waste” pitches–which is really an attempt to get a batter to swing at something that isn’t really hittable. “Nibbling.” I don’t recall seeing any MLB pitcher consistently throw unambiguous strikes at 0 and 2. It drives me nuts, particularly when the nibbler doesn’t have good enough control to get the batter to swing, but it doesn’t seem to be a Reds’ idiosyncrasy.

      • Old-school

        Nothing wrong with an 0-2 set up pitch low outside or a high fastball 2 inches above the zone. Every pitch must have a purpose though and wasting pitches and prolonging innings and walking batters is bad pitching.

        Every one cant be Nolan Ryan and Max Scherzer. Most pitchers at every level should have the goal of throwing strikes, mixing speeds, getting ahead and inducing soft contact by disrupting the timing of the hitter.

        The number one goal of pitching should be disrupting the timing of hitters and slowing bat speed and inducing soft contact. If they strike out great. But, command the strike out and be pitch efficienct and pitch to contact. Starting pitchers that go deep in games and make 32 starts is the formula to win baseball games, maximize the bullpen, and allow for SP consistency over the grind of a 162 game schedule.

        Bronson Arroyo goal was 30 starts and 200 innings every year. That guy didnt need 97 mph and he won a ton of games.

  40. J

    This organization is so pathetically predictable. They really seem to be doing everything in their power to remain mediocre for as long as possible and make as many fans as possible lose interest.

    • Daytonnati

      To add insult to injury – from today’s Axios Sports:

      ?? Stat du jour: On Aug. 8, the Cardinals had a 1.3% chance of making the playoffs. After Tuesday’s win — their 10th straight — their odds are now 89%.

      • Old-school

        Doug- this violates the site’s rules on profanity

    • Indy Red Man

      On the bright side they have some young talent that they’ve lacked since Joey/Cueto/BP/Bruce etc came up. Naquin was a good find! I think Givens could be a B+ closer if they can resign him. They’ll have Cessa next year and he’s really underrated. I really don’t see much young talent on the other teams in our division.

      We’ll see what happens with Castellanos, but the main thing is to get the pitching sorted out. Castillo can’t be horrible in April/May like this year. He was literally one of the worst in mlb. Mahle has to be better at gabp. Work on his arsenal against righties. Miley and Gray? Solid, but maybe they plan for 2024 and trade them if Nick bolts. Alot to consider! Maybe Suarez can get his career worst year out of his system like Cozart did. Cozart went from sub .600 ops to NL AS before his legs went bad. Moose is older and I have no faith in him whatsoever. Wasted millions

      • Indy Red Man

        Schrock too….another Tommy LaStella. He’s going to help against rhp

      • J

        Absolutely nothing about this organization’s recent history leads me to believe Givens will be part of the team next season. I will be pleasantly shocked if he is. They’ll let him walk away and sign a 35 year old who was really good for a few years until he got hurt in 2017, hasn’t had an ERA under 5.00 since then, and is willing to sign with the Reds for $1 million because nobody else wants to pay that much. And they’ll talk about how great it is to have a veteran leader in the bullpen.

  41. SOQ

    As much as I hate the Whiney Birds, You gotta hand it to them. They are probably the most dangerous team in MLB at the moment. We have to got to St. Louiee for a funeral this weekend. Not looking forward to the baseball discussions that are in my near future 🙁

  42. Mark A Verticchio

    For the last month many have asked, Why doesn’t Bell manage with any sense of urgency? Well now we know the answer, he never felt a sense of urgency because he knew all along that his job, no matter the outcome, was never in jeopardy. I believe that since he knew his job was not on the line he never worried about his decisions. My opinion of Bell the human being actually took a hit today, I always looked at him as a stand up guy, alibi poor manager. With this announcement, at this time, I actually for the first time question his character. There is no way he should have wanted this news to come today. It almost makes one think he feels above the rules of evaluating a manager.

    • Melvin

      As mentioned numerous times on Redleg Nation podcast. Bell likes to be in the limelight….one way or another.

      • wkuchad

        Really Melvin? It’s been mentioned numerous times on RLN that Bell likes to be in the limelight?

        Curious, is it requirement to be drunk or high to post on this site?

      • Melvin

        If you listen to Chad Dotson you would hear it too buddy. It may have been awhile since he’s said it but he definitely has. I don’t drink.

      • Melvin

        ..nor do I do drugs of any kind. hahaha

    • wkuchad

      There have been many fair posts criticizing Bell this year. Also, there have been a lot of dumb posts bashing Bell over this season, but Mark, you may have just hit the motherload. Reread your entire post. Do you seriously believe that?

      • Mark A Verticchio

        I don’t want to, but it’s just the way i feel today. As a retired high school basketball coach I have seen a lot of these types, but until today I didn’t see Bell that way, but who knows. On a side note most coaches I have known with this syndrome generally have their luck run out.

  43. Indy Red Man

    If Nick bolts there are some interesting cheaper FAs. For the record Nick makes $16/mil and I see an expected value of $21/mil. I think the Reds would pay that if they could?

    In no particular order:

    Jorge Soler – crazy power and a .872 ops in 45 games since he came to Atlanta. $8 mil currently

    Michael Conforto – bad year but looked like one of the top prospects in the NL 2-3 years ago

    Avi Garcia – We know him.

    Adam Duvall – We know him. A very natural outfielder with a very accurate arm. We could worse in RF next year

    Starling Marte – Old man has 45 steals or whatever. He’s killing it this year, but he’s 33 or 34 I think?

    E. Rosario – .804 ops vs rhp. You could do worse in a platoon. Problem is we have no lefty bashers since Geno went sour

    • wkuchad

      I really liked Duvall when he was here, but man he has zero ability to get on base.

    • Hanawi

      Soler is the only one of those that would interest me. He might be a prime regression candidate though so I’d be wary about giving him a deal for too long.

      • Indy Red Man

        I think he’s already had his prime regression. As for Duvall….yeah obp isn’t his strong point, but his defense makes up for it imo. I’d give him like 400 at-bats at most though.

    • Votto4life

      Where is Scott Schebler these days? 😉

    • Votto4life

      Seriously, seeing this list makes me depressed. If Nick walks I hope the front office will trade one of our starters for a RH bat.

      I really don’t want a poor man’s Nick Castellanos.

  44. Indy Red Man

    Since RLN is overreaction central (like every sports blog), I’m actually kind of surprised that 2/3 of the members haven’t proclaimed that they just knew Jose Siri was going to be a star. I’m a sucker for 30/30 so I was a little upset they cut him loose, but he wasn’t doing much in the minors at the time from what I remember?

    10 for his first 30 for Dusty with 4 hrs/3 steals 1.108 ops

    • Hanawi

      Siri always had some of the best tools in the organization, but consistency has been his downfall. Even in AAA this year he started out absolute scorching hot, but has been mediocre for awhile until he got the call up. I can see him as someone like Aquino, where he kills the ball until pitchers find the weak points and then just falls off a cliff.

      I was much more upset that they gave up Fairchild in the Bradley deal last year. He’d probably would have started quite a few games for them this year in CF. The D-backs also have Noe Ramirez, who was the main piece in the Iglesias deal with the Angels. Reds cut him and he’s been really good for Arizona in the bullpen.

      • Indy Red Man

        Yeah I did a little research on Fairchild when they drafted him. Good college hitter, but its almost impossible to judge a guys progress in the PCL. We’ll see how he does down the line in Seattle?

      • Jim Walker

        Yes on Fairchild. With the differing numbers of various kinds of draft picks in each draft, it got lost in the shuffle most the time that while Fairchild was technically a 2nd round pick in his draft, he was picked about 15 picks overall earlier than Winker, a supplemental or sandwich pick, was chosen as technically a 1st rounder in his draft. That’s basically half a round earlier of normal picks.

    • Jim Walker

      I certainly would not have said Siri was going to get to where he is now; but, I couldn’t believe he was allowed to be lost on waivers for nothing at the point that happened.
      He was already being talked up as an MLB ready defensive CF and those guys don’t come in bunches. Add in his baserunning speed; and, he looked like a typical 5th/6th OF last man on the bench at the least.

      Does anyone even recall what (most likely) marginal pitching prospect they feared losing enough to lose him on waivers?

      • Hanawi

        Well they waived him in the offseason before last season, so guys like Romano and Stephenson were some of the names. Worth pointing out that he went through two other orgs before he ended up with the Astros.

      • Jim Walker

        I suppose for where the Reds were at that time they didn’t see a need for such a specialty player. The Reds carried him through the winter of 2019-20 and waived him about a week ahead of spring training. That just doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense for a guy who had an option at that point.

        But then as you said Seattle (who claimed him from the Reds) waived him in the middle of spring training. The Giants claimed him and held him until June. They succeeded in waiving and outrighting him but then at the end of the 2020 season he had enough Minor League time to be a minor league free agent and signed with the Astros. Per Fangraphs he still has an option remaining.

        This is how Aquino is likely to end up. Somebody will get him as a minor league FA and be able to work with him in the minors. Whether he refinds the magic of 2019 who knows. I would not bet too much against him because I’ve read it can take a year or longer for power hitters to regain full strength in their hand following a hamate fracture. On the other hand, some guys never come all the back from them.

  45. Rod Andrews

    I think the fact the players like Bell has as much to do with it as anything. It’s a done deal, so complaining will do no good, now
    Just look forward to next season.

    • Votto4life

      It’s kinda where I am at…The decision has been made…time to move let’s see what the Front Office puts together for the 2022 roster.

      They need to sign Nick Castellanos or sign/trade for something similar. If Nick opts out (he will) it’s going to leave a huge hole in the line up.

  46. Kevin H

    Nice write up Doug. Let’s face it “arm chair managers” are never gonna be satisfied. I myself get frustrated with lack of hit and run etc.. Maybe next season Reds will have more speed in the lineup were you can do more small ball as they call it today.

    Bullpen craziness wasn’t Bell’s fault earlier this year. He used who he had. Heck, The “great” sparkey Anderson wouldn’t of won with the Bullpen from earlier this year.

    Reds have a good nucleus and will be fine. Winker, Senzel, and Naquin and perhaps Fridel(spelled wrong) as outfield. India at 2nd and Burrero at ss. Suarez will bounce back at 3rd and the catching combo will be back. I feel they need to get a solid bench. Not depend on journeymen players like Bell had to use earlier and even now.

    I truly believe future is bright.

    • wkuchad

      Agree completely. As long as ownership doesn’t cripple us by slashing budget, the next few years could be great. We have a good mix of young, cost controlled talent with solid veterans and depth of starting pitching. With a good offseason fixing some of our holes, next year could be a good one!

      • Indy Red Man

        Maybe? The problem is with Bell is that its young, cost controlled bench pieces. Human beings too often stick with comfortable even if its not that good. No way in Hades should TB have more at-bats then Stephenson? Tucker has been clutch and great defensively, but Stephenson has offensive potential far beyond anything TB has done.
        Brach? HH? We had better arms at Lville, but they didn’t use them.

        I’ll have to see it to believe it, but the pieces are mostly there like you said!

      • Mark A Verticchio

        I agree the talent could be there. The Reds will have to be a team that wins in spite of their manager. It happens a lot.

  47. Klugo

    Good God, no. Outside of one month last season and one month this season, his teams have underperformed. And guess what. There will be injuries next season, too. There will always be injuries. Cant use that as an excuse.

    • Indy Red Man

      Well very little of Antone or Lorenzen from April-August and Sims/AG both sucked. No manager in mlb is going to win when HH is the best you have. That being said this last month is Bell’s to own and he should’ve been fired over it imo. The one caveat though, to me, would be if Castellanos likes Bell and his renewal helps Nick resign

      • Jim Walker

        Do you think Bell feared being fired if he benched Moose.

    • greenmtred

      Underperformed whose expectations? Yours, I suppose. Not mine, certainly. The Reds have not, since 2012 or so, had a team that looked like a clear, serious contender… It’s pretty simple: get more good players at key positions, and you’ll win more games.

  48. Chris Holbert

    When I think about the has beens, I think about recently when Brach came off the IL and was immediately inserted into a high leverage situation. Who used Brach there, and why, The bullpen was like it is now. That is just one example of a game that the manager did lose, and there a many others

    • greenmtred

      You don’t know what any other pitcher out of the pen would have done, so what you do know is that you disagreed with it. You also don’t know the specific conditions of the other guys in the pen at that time.

      • Chris Holbert

        Myself and every other able bodied, logical, common sensical thinking Reds fan, disagreed with it, and knew what was going to happen.

  49. Doc

    There are a lot of pieces to getting the big picture. We now know Bell has been retained. We know Boddy and the hitting guy are out as they didn’t like the direction the Reds are going. Perhaps the direction that gave us a sub-standard BP was their doing and they are out. It appears that Johnson is staying, maybe that says something about who won the pitching debate and maybe Johnson will have more free reign to implement his ideas.

    Of course, we’ll have moves over the winter that will reshape the roster. If Bell could have a winning record in 3 years with the roster he has to work with, maybe its a really good thing that management doesn’t listen to posters on this site.

    • Indy Red Man

      Brantley was about to blow a gasket in the radio booth when Bell left Vlad in for 5 runs on Monday night. Its not just posters. Bell has his good points too. He installed India at leadoff pretty quickly when he got hot. He pulled AG from the closer role very quickly. Overall though he just doesn’t have a feel for pitchers? The exit velocity will tell you what you need to know. I don’t care that much about cars, but when the check engine light comes on then I better have somebody check the engine. The frustrating thing is Cessa was coming in the game anyway? So why wait?
      Thats just common sense.

    • Alan Horn

      Please explain how how Boddy and the hitting guy had anything to do with our substandard BP. You lost me there.

      • Alan Horn

        Are you saying Boddy didn’t like the way Johnson constructed the BP? If so, no one else did either(at least prior to the trade deadline).

  50. DaveCT

    Doug. Please just post the interview. We subscribers will support you.

  51. Optimist

    I may be less upset than most, but this indicates more about the front office than D Bell. I’ll be surprised if they make a serious effort for Nick C. I’ll be very surprised if they eat the salary and trade, or release, any of the obvious underperformers. I’ll be very, very surprised if they continue the aggressive analytic/culture hiring, which happened under the Dick W GM era. That may be perhaps the biggest disappointment which this move forebodes – if they don’t replace the Boddy/Lee types with similar ones.

    St. Louis has long had a much better organizational culture than most of MLB, and the Rays and A’s have joined and perhaps passed them, and it looks as if the Brewers are moving there as well. The Reds have been faltering there for 40 years, at least.

    • Alan Horn

      I agree, And it isn’t going to change anytime soon. Unless they show a marked willingness to improve the team, they may have a paltry following next season. I know this fan of 66 years will find someone else to follow if they don’t.

      • Optimist

        Only 56 years for me, and haven’t felt this frustration since recalling “he’s an old 30”. They recovered nicely from that, don’t know about this.

  52. Jon

    So when are we going to start getting extensions for guys like Castillo and Winker?

    The fact that ownership blew the opportunity to reach the postseason this year is unforgivable. The path to the postseason in 2022 will be even more difficult not even accounting for the loss of Castellanos. Instead of playing the weak AL Central, the NL Central faces the AL East next year with four strong playoff-caliber teams to face.

    Maybe Bob will fire Krall at the end of the year and hire a guy from the Rays. Wishful thinking…

    • Michael E

      The way this team performed overall, I don’t want any current player extended. It feels like 90% contract albatross v 10% great-deal-for-Reds contract.

      No thanks.

      Winker, good when he plays, so every other month or so. Pay him half what he is worth and you got something.

      • Jon

        So the alternative is what? Sign free agents to overpriced deals to get them to play for a .500 ball club that hasn’t had a playoff series victory since 1995? That worked out well with Castellanos, but has been disastrous with Moose and Shogo. Or do we trade from our farm system that’s finally looking respectable to get some bats? The core of India, Stephenson, Votto, Winker, and likely Suarez isn’t enough to win the division. Need at least two big bats to complement them.

  53. JayTheRed

    Well congrats Reds… You have managed to take the first step in losing another fan. Now all you have to do is not make improvements to this team this winter and I’m done.

    I felt horrible inside when I saw the headline. I almost wanted to cry. Bell is by far not the worse manager ever but he sure is one of the worst Reds managers ever. He sure did not help this team win. I can think of very few times where he made the right move over the past 2 years.

    I am not waiting around forever. I have no hope currently left in me that until this team is sold to someone else I really don’t think they will be a world series contender. Just waiting for the next domino to fall. A .500 finish or worse will be strike 2 for my view on what I will do as a baseball fan for the rest of my life.

    Really though if they don’t make smart decisions this winter or spring. I’m done with this team. I’ve followed them since I was 12 years old and I am 45 now. I have been through ups and downs and the downs are just getting out of hand.

  54. Jim t

    So glad they have extended manager Bell. I’ll certainly be renewing my season tickets.

  55. RedFuture

    Certainly, the Reds at least go through the exercise of conducting a post-mortem. It has to revolve around what if they had kept:
    1) DeSclafani, SP
    2) Iglesias, CL
    3) Bradley, RP
    No other conclusion can be reached other than they would have given the Brewers a very good run for their money and at the least clinched a wild card.

  56. TR

    Losing a chance to at least appear in the NL playoffs has been resolved by two more years of manager Bell. I look forward to a lot of offseason activity to keep the fanbase interested, but I also anticipate movement in the front office where a group of minority owners come together to find a new local principal owner to stimulate a franchise that needs to win.

    • Jim Walker

      See my comment to Sultan of Swaff below. The ownership situation could hinge on whether the Williams family is still in (and for how much) following the departure of Dick Williams at about this time last year. There have been numerous reports over the years which indicated the combined stakes of various members of the Williams family was larger than the Castellini holdings but the Castellini family controls the special managing partner share.

      Here is a link from when Dick Williams was made Reds GM which contains the following quote

      “(Dick) Williams is the son of Reds chairman Joe Williams and the nephew of Tom Williams, the team’s vice chairman and treasurer.

      “Our family has a share in the club, yes,” Williams said on Wednesday. “I think if anything, it just aligns my interests that much further. I am as incentivized as anyone to see this succeed.”

  57. greenmtred

    Houston has better players. Baker was the subject of much outrage on RLN when he managed the Reds. Every Reds’ manager in the internet age has been. Probably every manager everywhere has been. It’s just so easy to criticize decisions retrospectively. The comment conflating managing with parenting is interesting: Joey Votto is a little kid? Of course we shouldn’t consider the players’ opinions: we, after all, have such great experience, having played amateur baseball years ago and having watched lots of games on tv. We know better, right?

  58. redsfan

    My take is that I think this is a good move. I don’t remember who, but someone mentioned on Twitter that David Bell is a better choice at manager than whoever this version of the front office may hire. Especially if it means retaining Derek Johnson.

  59. JRZ

    The real problem with this team is how it’s constructed. That falls on Kroll. How do you trade Raisel for a bag of beans. And, don’t blame Bell for the third base fiasco. Or, for the late addition of Cabrera. With Nick gone (a foregone conclusion) the outfield will have a huge hole in right field. Bell can only play the players Kroll gives home.

  60. SultanofSwaff

    This move has everything to do with the front office and their insular culture. My perspective might be skewed by my own experience, but I work for a medium sized company where ownership and top executives exclusively hire ‘their’ people. I feel the Reds ownership has this same bias toward the familiar faces who know their place and not challenge them on anything. It’s mob-like in a way—you have your made people and then there’s everyone else. Williams, Cotham, Boddy, etc. were all disruptors and now all are gone. As a fan you can only reach one conclusion about how they approach the operations of the team.

    • Frankie Tomatoes

      This is exactly what it is.

    • Jim Walker

      The interesting part about Dick Williams is that his family per various reports actually owns/ owned more of the team than the Castellini family but the Castellini family controls the general partner “super share”.

      It was believed that it took both the Williams percentage and the Castellini percentage acting in concert to block anyone else from taking control of the team by acquiring all the other outstanding shares which is exactly what the Castellini group did to force the Linder family to give up the general partner share.

      The question I have not been able to find an answer to is whether the Williams money left the Reds with DW. If it did that might explain a lot of the panic level austerity this time last year as the Castellinis may have been buying back the Williams shares to keep them off the open market.

      • Optimist

        It’s been a while since I looked, but IIRC, there were 13-15 partner shares, and the scheme was the “managing partner owned 2, while the others were held singly. The idea being enough shares to allow several local investors a stake but to make a franchise move impossible. Also, the arrangement was to allow control in the partner interested in doubling their financial outlay. Again, the numbers may be off, and I think the WIlliams, and perhaps Castellini, family now have multiple shares, but the concept has held since the threat of relocation following P Crosley’s ownership.

        That said, I doubt it is contentious at that level, unless the ownership has concentrated as you suppose. The interesting development is D Williams role as a much more active manager. Again, I think he left not out of a conflict, but as a transition to return in the managing partner role if and when the partners agree to it.

        Then again, one the partners could sue the others tomorrow for an accounting, and blow the whole thing up.

      • Jim Walker

        @Optimist, can’t find the link I read a little over a year ago. Think it was one of the Cincinnati business journals/ newsletters. It put the Castellini holding at 15% and the combined Williams family holdings at 20-25%. This was while DW was still PoBO.

        Going back to the Linder days, it had emerged that some actions took 67% vote to override the managing partner and others 75%. Assuming that still holds, it takes (took) the Williams shares to make the Castellini share bulletproof. And DW’s father and uncle were on the “executive committee”. At the time DW became GM, his dad was chairman and his uncle was vice chairman and treasurer. (linked in a comment above)

        Maybe what we have here is an emerging generational fight between Phil Castellini and Dick Williams for who will be next CEO??

      • Optimist

        Your closing observation may be spot on. Still, only DW amongst the group seems to have indicated a new approach – i.e. better to spend millions on development behind the scenes rather than tens of millions on FA signings and long-term deals. That’s why the Boddy/Lee replacements will be indicative.

  61. SultanofSwaff

    The old school faction’s place in the hierarchy was being challenged and they recognized this threat from the outsiders and swiftly dispatched them. Not that unsurprising if you start from a baseline assumption that the team supports the higher ups and not the other way around.

  62. LDS

    I woke up this morning just sure this was all just a bad dream. Alas, it’s real. Contrast with the Brewers and the Padres. They actually try to fix their problems. The Reds simply double down.

    • Jim Walker

      The Brewers and Padres have both had a true change in ownership over the last generation. The Reds have 50+ years of sophisticated generational handoff of the managing partner share among a conservative midsized city’s top 2%.

      The Nipperts begat the Williams begat Schott begat the Linders begat the Castgellinis (with Williams and Linders both minority partners)

      • DataDumpster

        That’s all true but I might add that when the nucleus of the BRM era was being created in the late 1960s, the owner was Bill Dewitt with actual real and capable GM and director in Bob Howsam and Dick Wagner. His son still lives here but long ago found better pastures to ply his trade as owner of your scorching hot Redbirds. Unfortunately, no such legacy exists here from those days. Marge had some moments but Lindner and Castellini really only excelled at setting up the PR, marketing and financial plans to milk the county for their stadiums (with a very generous assist from Mike Brown).
        I don’t know when the Reds lease ends on that deal but if you want Bob to really sell the team, you might not like the result unless Cincinnati suddenly imports some billionaires or becomes the next Austin, Nashville, or Charlotte (real soon).

      • Jim Walker

        Bob Howsam et al were brought in by the syndicate (that is what they called themselves) which arm wrestled the team away from Bill DeWitt in 1967 or thereabouts.

        The frontman was Frances Dale, then publisher of the Enquirer. He served as President of the Reds through 1973 although it turned out to have largely been Louis Nippert who bankrolled Dale’s group. Nippert stepped out of the shadows obtaining a “majority” interest in the Reds in 1973 and became team president.

  63. LeRoy

    It seems everyone in the Red’s organization is on the same page. The announcers are ultra positive about telling how great the organization and players are. The top dogs talk about the teams great play and potential and the manager is positive so he can keep his job and his buddies on the team happy. All is not perfect in the Queen city and cannot be fixed until people with a sense of reality take over and see it like it is. A team that has accomplished little in the last 10 years and not much since 1992. Reality is the way Marty told things on the radio like they were and a manager with a little fire like Sweet Lou was. Tell it like it is so you can fix the situation. I’m almost 80 and have been waiting til next year since 1992. I’ll be lucky to see another real good Cincinnati team.

    • Alan Horn

      I hear you Leroy and agree. There has to be a will to win and everything else will fall into place. That will to win doesn’t appear to be there by the owners and higher ups.

  64. AMDG

    What I like about bringing Bell back…
    Managing baseball isn’t as much a determining factor in W’s or L’s as in other sports like football. So it keeps continuity, for what that’s worth.

    What I don’t like about bringing Bell back…
    He has an affinity for playing mediocre/bad veterans over promising youngsters. And I don’t just mean limiting Stephenson’s AB’s or refusing to give Barrero a legit chance to get regular playing time, or the nonsense of moving the organization’s top defensive SS to a new position in the outfield.

    And, on the topic of Barrero, I just thought I’d point out…
    Jose Barrero is hitting 0.181 over his first 94 AB’s
    Sean Casey hit 0.187 over his first 91 AB’s
    Eric Davis hit 0.189 over his first 95 AB’s
    Johnny Bench hit 0.154 over his first 91 AB’s

    Aside from Barrero, these other guys all got constant playing time, and were given the opportunity to play their way out of early slumps.

  65. LDS

    So today’s lineup is out. DeShields, hitting .125 against LH’ers, is starting out of position in LF. Barrero, the Reds’ best SS prospect, is again in CF. All in deference to a career utility player that’s 30+. And these kind of moves justify extending Bell? Absurd to any rational observer.

    • Chris Holbert

      That is called being penalized because you are young and athletic, and, the assumption because of those characteristics, you can effectively play a major league CF.

    • Jim Walker

      Unless they are seriously looking at Barrero as a CF option for 2022, it makes no sense using the very same players not to have Barrero at SS, Farmer in LF, and DeShields in CF. Barrero and DeShields are both being used out of position by Bell and Farmer is, well, a career utility guy.

      • LDS

        Yep, but Krall assured us that Bell knows how to manage a dugout.

      • Melvin

        Well moving a SS to CF is not without precedent in the Reds organization (See Eric Davis and Billy Hamilton). I’m with you. I’d leave Barrero at SS. He’s the best we got and should be playing there NOW.

  66. centerfield

    The Reds threw in the towel for 2022. We’ve become the lovable losers replacing the Cubbies.

  67. DataDumpster

    It just doesn’t matter, the game result that is. David Bell knows how to spot who is wearing the brown shoes on a particular day and fall in line. The only surprising thing is that this kind of attitude seems to permeate all down the organization, to the beat reporters, local paper, and the vendors that service the club. If there an commitment at all to the fanbase? Can they even go on live TV and tell the county residents their plans for all the money that is sent their way each year via every taxable item you buy for the last 20+ years.

  68. Mark A Verticchio

    Boy the Brewers have become the next Cardinal victim, blew a 5-0 lead. Will they ever lose 4 with the Cubs this week end, don’t see a loss there, but you never know. 12 in a row that is a hot team. Hope the lose wild card game. On to football.

  69. Angelo

    Please tell me what DB did to deserve this extension? (his contract must be super cheap!) Swept last year in the playoffs. This year we have 2 all star outfielders, a resurgent Joey who finally awoke out of his 3 year slumber and exceptional starting pitching and yet we are choking again. On top of this his BP management has been atrocious all year. When we traded Raisel and his paltry 4M salary to the Angels I said Ok they must know something that I dont know. Well, 33 saves later for a team that is 7 games under 500 and I am still scratching my head on how and why we did this. Imagine where we would have been with Raisel closing instead of the cheap myriad of inept reclamation projects we used. I am a NYer and fell in love with the Reds after Pete put Buddy in his place in the 1973 playoffs and now for the first time in my life I am seriously considering walking away from the Reds. Mediocrity is clearly accepted by the ownership of this once proud franchise.