2013 Reds / 2014 Reds

The case for Bryan Price

Shortly after Dusty Baker was fired as Reds manager, I was asked what I thought of Bryan Price. I responded that he’s an excellent pitching coach, and there is definite interest in him around the league as a future manager.

The next question was an obvious follow-up: as a manager, would he be an improvement over Dusty? I answered truthfully: I didn’t know. Without having an opportunity to speak with him, and inquire as to his managerial philosophy, I’d have to remain neutral on this question.

Enter Bronson Arroyo to allay any fears I may have had.

As for the next manager, Arroyo said he thinks Bryan Price would be an excellent choice.

“I think he’d be unbelievable,” Arroyo said. “He’s as organized as anyone in the game, he holds people as accountable as well as anyone I’ve seen. He doesn’t buy into stereotypical things in the game, things that other people buy into that I don’t feel are relevant. Price looks at evidence. He’s a freaking smart guy, he makes his decision on reasonable evidence. Sometimes in baseball we go by hunches, what someone else said or they way things have gone in the past. He doesn’t do that.”

Read that paragraph again. What were the criticisms of Dusty in the end? He didn’t hold players accountable. He was set in his ways, and wouldn’t deviate from “the book.” He wouldn’t look at the evidence, the research (who needs a high OBP in the #2 spot?). Is Arroyo making the case that Price would be the Anti-Dusty?

Joel Luckhaupt and I discussed this a bit at length in our recent Dusty-focused podcast. We don’t know if Price wants to manage, but if he does, he’ll have an opportunity sooner rather than later. He turned down the Marlins job last year, and he’s reported to be near the top of Seattle’s wish list this year. If the Reds want him, they’ll have to move quickly, and the powers that be have said they want to move quickly anyway. This could happen soon.

I don’t know how Price would perform as manager. His pitchers seem to love him, and they speak highly of his ability to manage personalities. At the very least, Arroyo’s quotes above give me hope that he’s open-minded about tactics and new ideas. (Plus, we know that Price wanted to make Aroldis Chapman a starter last off-season, so he has that going for him, in my mind.)

So yes, I’m at least a little hopeful that Price would be a good manager. And “hope” has been in short supply around Redleg Nation headquarters recently.

83 thoughts on “The case for Bryan Price

  1. Every time I read that quote I wonder what “[Price] doesn’t buy into stereotypical things in the game, things that other people buy into that I don’t feel are relevant”. Are those things advanced metrics or the old school book. That needs some clarification.

    I also like what Sam LeCure had to say.

    • @TC: It’s a good question. Bronson felt, as a pitcher, that wins are by far the most important stat. He’s a smart guy but is not necessarily enamored of WAR, FIP, etc.

      On the other hand, knowing Bronson as the free thinker that he is, he might include aspects of both old school and metrics in his view of dumb stereotypes.

  2. Price, as somebody noted, does have that “managerial air” about him. Price would be my first interview.

    He probably needs a good bench coach, like a Robin Yount or a recently retired guy like Mark DeRosa or Doug Glanville or even Scott Rolen, but I assume Price would be able to find the right guy for that.

    • @Big Ed:

      According to Fay, Rolen said the only place he wants to manage is Little League. Imagine having him as your LL coach. Awesome.

  3. Agreed…Arroyo’s comments set Price way up on the canidate list. I know there’s been rumors of Larkin as a manager but I have no idea how to feel about that. I wonder if Larking would be interested in being a bench or hitting coach under Price??

  4. Without adding my wooden nickel’s worth of evaluation of Bryan Price, I do want to suggest putting somebody with a high OBP in the No. 2 spot would depend largely on whether you **have** somebody for that spot.

    If you move Votto there, do you then make the case that you need to put somebody with a high OBP in the 3 spot?

    You gotta HAVE somebody to do that. If Dusty had better alternatives, I’d still like to see who they were.

    And if that was indeed Marlon Byrd, Dusty is on record about that guy….

    On any manager or GM, if he doesn’t bring in either (a.) a good hitter or (b.) a good hitting coach, the lineup won’t actually get much better.

    Worse, probably, with Choo likely out the door.

    • @Johnu1: I think a case could be made that a better alternative would have been Choo, Votto, BP, Bruce. Personally, I like Choo, Votto, Bruce best, but I don’t think many managers are going to lump 3 LHB’s back to back to back. Instead of trying to get your best hitters more PA, Dusty was breaking up his best hitters with arguably his worst for a large chunk of the season. Ideally the Reds would have had a position player with an OBP around .350 they could have plugged into the 2 spot and kept Votto 3rd. Absent that, your best bet is to bat your best hitters in clusters. Dusty loves the RBI. How many more RBI would BP have had without Cozart’s nearly automatic out in between Votto and Choo? How many more chances would Bruce have had with runners on and fewer than 2 outs? And how many fewer times would we have to watch Cozart bunt Choo to 3rd with 0 outs.

    • @Johnu1: Baker did have someone better last year for the 2 hole, Hanigan. He bats Ludwick in the 2 hole in a playoff game this year, with an OBP under 300, but he didn’t bat Hanigan in the 2 hole last year at all when he had an OBP of 365. Shoot, Hanigan had an OBP better than Ludwick this season; why not bat him in the 2 hole during the playoff. Fact is, Baker had the alternatives; he just refused to ever use them.

      In a printed report in the Enquirer recently, Baker threw his players under the bus for the team’s lack of playoff success. While true or not, a players manager would look to take the blame himself. In another printed report in the Enquirer, Baker talked of how he came in here and raised the bar. Let’s see, “raising the bar” means you can have two starters batting at the Mendoza line and regularly bat them in the 1-2 holes, regardless of how poor they are, even though there are better candidates throughout the roster? Raising the bar means having a 3 headed platoon monster playing in LF in 2011? If anything, it was the players and the front office who struggled to keep the bar high for this club due to Baker’s inefficiencies.

      • @steveschoen: Hanigan, to be fair, was on the injured list for the best part of 2 months. So whatever OBP he had, he wasn’t able to play. I don’t want to sprawl all over that part of the topic, but just wishing you have guys for certain spots and looking at the numbers, doesn’t always work.

        Ludwick batted 2nd about 4 times, which was hardly a trend.

        Everyone else wanted Mesoraco to catch, not Hanigan. So if Hanigan was going to bat 2nd, he needed to be playing left field.

        See where we are going with this?

        If you don’t have people who can contend inside the advanced metrics, you have to play with the people you have. Arguably, any lineup can be tweaked to be better.

        But Hanigan is a pretty lame example of a guy who ought to be batting 2nd … if you want Mesoraco to catch.

        • @Johnu1:

          There were several alternatives that would not have required something radical like batting Votto second. Phillips, Frazier, the Heisey/Paul/Robinson LF trio. (None were great options, of course, but all better than Cozart.)

        • @per14: Cozart hit for higher average than Frazier, so that does not work for me. You could argue that with the pressure off that Cozart hit better when he hit lower, but Frazier spent most of the season at 220.

        • @per14: Frazier got 16 starts hitting 2nd in the lineup. It’s not a huge sample, about 10% of a season, but it produced 72 PA with this slash-line .188/.257/.344. In theory, you’d think that Frazier would get some fastballs to hit and do better over a larger sample. With the chance he was given though, he didn’t produce particularly well there.

        • @Johnu1: And, Ludwick was injured for about 4 months. He wouldn’t have been any more prepared to play them Hanigan was.

        • @steveschoen: Ludwick is an anecdote. He didn’t bat 2nd in the order often enough to even be part of this conversation. The one-game play in — the guy got 2 hits.

        • @Johnu1: To optimize run production, you need to bat your two highest OBP guys back-to-back and then follow them with your highest ISO guy. For the Reds in 2013, that would have looked like Choo/Votto/Bruce. Most teams who you think about as offensive juggernauts do this (Namely, DET, BOS, LA). Usually this will manifest as 1-2-3 or 2-3-4 in the order.

          People might say “They are all lefties, unfortunately.” Against RHP starters, that shoudln’t be a problem for anyone. The benefit of their proximity outweighs them having a LHP to go against them in the later innings. And let’s face it, tossing 1 RH in there doesn’t do much since not many of our righties don’t hit lefties much better than Votto/Bruce. And if your are all that worried and you buy into the Mesoraco camp, you can go Choo/Votto/Mesoraco/Bruce.

          Regardless, I don’t buy the “Dusty didn’t have the guys” argument. Votto should bat 2nd. Bruce should bat behind Votto. He did that a few times, but not nearly enough.

          And the splitting Choo/Votto thing was the worst of all. Cozart batting leadoff with Choo/Votto 2-3 would have been better for run expectancy than batting Cozart #2. This would have given many more innings led off by Choo/Votto rather than Cozart ending the inning. And would have given more opportunities for the #4 hitter to hit with 2 outs, rather than the rally stalling at #2 in the order.

          Looking forward to next season, I hope we have different orders based on LHP/RHP. Too many variables (Choo, Hamilton) to know for sure, but 1-5 should look something like this:

          Against RHP
          Hamilton (If can maintain .325 OBP or better)
          Votto
          Choo
          Bruce
          Mesoraco

          Against LHP
          Hamilton (If can maintain .325 OBP or better)
          Votto
          Mesoraco
          Bruce
          Ludwick/Phillips/Frazier (Depends on if Frazier makes strides and if Luddy regains power stroke)

          The only reason I don’t keep Choo higher against LHP is I expect his OBP to regress against LHP since it was largely due to HBPs, which aren’t a “repeatable” skill. IF you cut his 13 HBP against lefties (in 218 PAs) to 6 for next year, it takes 30 points off his OBP, down to .316, which is “decent” for a leftie against LHP, but not great. And since Choo doesn’t have a ton of speed, it makes more sense to bat him lower in the lineup in my opinion.

          If we don’t get Choo back and we don’t have Hamilton in the bigs, I think there are too many variables to even think about a lineup.

          Ultimately, I hope the Reds new skipper spends a lot of time thinking about things rather than feeling people have pre-established spots (Votto 3rd, for example).

        • @prjeter: This is quite a treatise. I think I have actually SUGGESTED that you could tweak a lineup and make it better. Not clear if that part fell through the cracks; evidently, it did.

          The point remains, and this relates TO BRYAN PRICE … no matter what he wants, if he doesn’t HAVE a high OBP guy, which was what Dusty didn’t have, you can’t manage your way to anything.

          If Dusty had put Votto in the 2 spot, and Bruce in the 3 spot, we’d all still be whining about not having a cleanup hitter.

          And PLEASE, everyone … spare me Ryan Hanigan as a 2 hitter. There are metrics and there are metrics … the guy is NOT a 2 hitter in anyone’s lineup.

          Especially since all I read here was that Mesoraco ought to be the catcher.

          If this is pulling weeds to find still more reasons to bash Baker, I think we are out of them.

          I find it interesting that after ripping the Reds apart all year, we’ve all suddenly come to the epiphany that Jay Bruce is a good No. 3 hitter.

          Not much of this deals with Bryan Price but I do find the logic on this board sometimes to be somewhat like play dough.

        • @Johnu1: A byproduct of the blog format is that I had to “reply” to someone. I wasn’t for the most part trying to refute anything you said, although, I did say I don’t buy the “Dusty didn’t have the guys” idea.

          At any rate, I guess it was a too long post to say my ultimate statement, which was at the end, that I hope the new Reds manager really puts a lot of thought into his lineups. Saying “I don’t have the guys” is a cop-out. I gave examples of things Baker could have done with the same guys. For example, batting Cozart #1 would have been less harmful to the team than batting him #2.

          Either way, I wasn’t trying to bash you or Dusty. Just got a bit rambly with my theories on lineup construction. Carry on.

        • @Johnu1: I think the point that I and others have been trying to make is that we get too caught up in “he’s a good 2 hitter, he’s a good 3 hitter, etc etc” and need to just focus on “he’s a good hitter, he isn’t.” So to your point about Dusty not having high OBP guys, he did. Choo and Votto. They should bat back to back because they are your best hitters. Where, precisely, they bat (as long as it’s in the top 3) is less important than the fact that they bat consecutively. If you carry this out to your best 3 hitters batting consecutively, you would have choo votto bruce in some order 1-3 or 2-4. A manager can determine his best 3 hitters based on platoon splits and vary it accordingly, but the goal should be batting your 3 best hitters together. If your 3 best hitters are Cozart, Heisey, and Izturis, they should bat 1-2-3. Regardless of how “good” your best 3 hitters are, they should bat consecutively.

        • @Eric: FWIW, I advocated Votto being the No. 2 hitter all year, basically shoving everyone up a notch (BP would hit 3rd) and sliding Cozart into the 8 spot. Cozart did hit better than that eventually. The problem always was in left field, and I don’t see it changing without Ryan Braun or David DeJesus.

          Still, back to Price … despite what Bronson said, what’s the guy think an offense ought to contribute to his pitching staff?

        • @prjeter:Batting your best hitter second is not a good idea no matter what his OBP is. Dropping Choo to 2 is not a problem for me, and Bruce should probably hit 4, but now you need a lead off hitter. The plan going into the season was for Phillips to bat second-a good bit of thinking since Phillips is pretty adept at hitting behind the runner. There may be a time when Mesoraco is a good choice for 4 or 5, but only when he is playing most days.
          All of this is moot however, because next year will have someone else as the manager and rehashing what happened last year does no good.

      • @steveschoen: Steve, you mean like Clint Hurdle who made every effort to take the backlash for a recent Pirates loss? And don’t look now but that manager, by taking responsibility for his team, is about to LEAD his team into the NLCS. This is the type of manager the Reds need and Terry Francona would have been great – but the Reds blew their chance by resigning Dusty immediately after their NL Divisional implosion last year. Bad, bad, bad move – so Reds – please do not repeat the same mistake. A little tweak and the Reds very well could be heading next year where the Pirates are heading this year (NLCS or WS).

      • @steveschoen: I just wanted to let you know that Hanigan and Meseraco had simlilar BA against right handed pitching BUT Meseraco batted .321 against lefties and Hanigan batted .222 against lefties. This had to really bother Baker as the obvious choice was Meseraco against lefties at the 2 hole but it would have been a worthless en devour as both Votto and Choo were horrible against left handed pitching. So that to be a dilemma for Baker. A much bigger question is why did Hanigan ever start any game this season over Meseraco? The difference between the two seemed to be Meseraco could hit left handed pitching very well. Was this a Dusty move or directly from Jockerty?

      • @steveschoen: Steve: he’s gone now, and time may tell whether or not that’s for the best. But Hannigan batting 2nd last year wouldn’t have worked because he was injured and couldn’t hit. At his best, he’s the slowest runner on the team, and it may be old school to think so, but faster guys will score on more hits. And, while far from being the only factor, Dusty’s arrival in Cincy coincided with the rebirth of a stagnant team.

        • @greenmtred: Hanigan wasn’t injured last season, green. As a matter of fact, he had one of his better seasons batting last season. So, the question is still there. Why didn’t Baker bat Hanigan in the 2 hole last season and did bat Ludwick in the 2 hole upon coming back this season? Hanigan is slow? Ludwick isn’t fleet of foot himself? Hanigan didn’t bat that well? That was this season and not last season. As well as, for this season, their numbers were pretty much the same.

  5. The new coaching staff:
    Mgr.: Bryan Price
    Bench: Omar Vizquel
    Pitching: Ted Power
    Hitting: Mark McGwire or Chili Davis
    3rd base: David Bell
    1st base: Billy Hatcher
    Bullpen: the same

      • @Johnu1:

        From what I’ve read, the best hitting coaches today are McGwire(LAD), Davis (A’s), Jay Bell(Pit), Derek Shelton (TB), and John Mabry (STL).

        I am not sure Berry will be back. He is a good 3B coach. Bell has 3B coach experience.

        As for Vizquel, when I read about bench coaches and today’s game, Omar Vizquel’s name is always at or near the top of the list. I’d take Vizquel over Cairo. But, Price may want a guy with some managing experience to be his bench coach. Maybe someone like Acta would fit in there.

        • @WVRedlegs: Now there’s a thought. I was betwixted about my preference for a bench coach if Price was offered and accepted the manager position. I agree that some experience might be desired and necessary as a partner with an inexperienced manager. I don’t think Acta and Price have any history together, but good, professional partnerships have to start somewhere. I like the idea of Manny Acta as the bench coach if both he and Price were interested. I hope Berry stays on as the 3B coach, but the manager must be permitted a major say in forming his staff.

        • @WVRedlegs: You want someone with managing experience? Mark Berry has a load of experience managing so why not him?
          Why would McGuire, who is from CA want to come to Cincy or for that matter Chili Davis?
          Rudy Jaramillo was considered a genius until he left TX and went to Philly so I would guess who are the best changes with the season.

    • @WVRedlegs: Like Price/Power pitching combo. Want a solid hitting coach (not another Cardinal ‘McGuire’) and a solid right hand man (bench coach) for Price – Griffey Sr., Eric Davis etc.

  6. I assume that Dusty Baker, as a manager, spent more time dealing with the hitters, and gave Price a fair amount of autonomy with the pitching staff. (Except, of course, for the lovely way Dusty had of “using” them).

    So I would also assume that “Manager” Price would be more involved with the pitching staff than your average manager, and would have much better ideas about utilizing it, while giving the new hitting coach a lot more leeway. Which is all to the good, though it would certainly make the selection of that new hitting coach very important.

    I say bring on Manager Price.

  7. I like the idea of using a pitching coach as manager for one very important reason…. Bullpen Management. There is no guarantee Price would be better than Dusty, but I have to think Bullpen management could be handled much better by someone who knows pitching and pitchers.

    This area alone was the reason Baker should have been let go. His bullpen management was the worst I’d ever seen from a manager. He had no clue.

  8. I’ve often thought the best person to hire a good coach is a good coach. Price might hire a hitting coach if he were manager who handled hitting the way he handed the pitching staff.

  9. Outside of someone proven, like Girardi, I don’t really see many options out there. The lists that are being compiled around the internet are not inspiring, Riggleman, Bell, no thanks. At that point, without a sure-fire home run of a hire, I think Price needs to be retained, and if that means as manager, then so be it. He has the respect of the players and he will hold them accountable. Get a good hitting coach and then go and improve your team for the manager to use.

    • @hotto4votto: That’s the reason why I don’t think we should rush. I do think we will have someone in place by Reds Fest. Also, I doubt the D-Backs were thinking of Gibson when they fired their previous manager. Same with the Pirates and Hurdle, as well as with the Orioles and Showalter. So, I still have hope. As well as, just because we hire someone, that doesn’t make the person our “savior”. It may look good on paper, but we will still need to see how the season will go first.

    • @hotto4votto: Agreed on Bell. I’ve never been enthusiastic about him. I’m good with Riggleman but I think the Reds could do better.

      My current list comes to three guys who are all internal: Price, Sweet, and Speir.

      • @TC: Speier < Baker. Speier offers zero improvement over Dusty with less clubhouse skills. No thank you.

  10. I heard last night if the Reds move quick, it will be Price. As far as I’m concerned, I can’t help thinking I would look around a bit. I would include Price in the mix, though. Someone will definitely be in there by Reds Fest.

  11. The first priority in hiring an manager is to get a solid ‘manager’. This has nothing to do with baseball, management is management. Everything else of any importance can be taught or learned. For a good manager you need communication, communication and communication, at every level.

    The basebal manager must be able to communicate effectively with the players, coaches, GM, owner, media and fans. Effective communication does not mean throwing out overworked cliches, it means sharing your message clearly with no ambiguity or avoidance. Chalk one up for Bryan Price.

    The baseball manager must provide clear guidance and expectations, with no ambiguity to muddy the waters. Those expectations must be followed up with accountability. The individual style used to accomplish this is personal. Some managers will be in your face while other managers will be sternly demanding, while other managers quietly deliver their message with the understanding that the message better be received and followed. Chalk two up for Bryan Price.

    The baseball manager must have a solid relationship up and down in the management tree. The players must respect the manager and the organizational management must trust the manager. The player’s respect musat be real and honest. The organizational trust must be real and honest. Chalk three up for Bryan Price.

    The baseball manager must be open and receptive to input from all levels, even outside the direct organization. Decisions must be based on a thorough review of all aspects related to the decision without bias or prejudice. No decisions will be perfect and some decisions will be wrong (or at least work out wrong). It’s not a perfect world and certainly not a perfect game. The baseball manager must be open to criticism without taking such criticism personal. The baseball manager must be comfortable with his (or her) fallibility, at least on an internal level if not an external level. Chalk four up for Bryan Price.

    The baseball manager must be protective of the players and the organization. Any issues regarding criticism or discipline should be handled internally within the organization. The players should not be subjected to external criticism except as a last resort and that usually involves a change of scenery for the player involved if an immediate change is not accompliched. Chalk five up for Bryan Price.

    Only after the management skills are addressed and resolved should the discussion of actual baseball skills and understanding become important in the selection process. That doesn’t mean such skills and understanding are not important. This is also a critical aspect of the manager’s job but unless the manager candidate has actual managerial experience at the major league level (Joe Girardi, etc.), the fans are on the outside looking in regarding this decision process. Fortunately, this is also the easiest part of a baseball manager’s job to adjust and refine (see Clint Hurdle in 2013).

    • @Shchi Cossack: It sounds as though you have chalked up more than enough positives for Bryan Price – and the Red’s need to make it so and then install Ted Power as pitching coach (have a very positive feeling about this prospect). The two would work very well together – something the Reds really need and haven’t had for years – as the situation became with Dusty went well beyond dysfunctional to a high degree of toxicity.

      The Reds should NEVER have extended Dusty last year – NEVER!!

  12. My only request on a managerial candidate is someone whose hitting philosophy is not in direct conflict with our 200 million dollar star.

  13. Interesting thoughts on management Shchi. Ironically, we’d always hear that Dusty was good with managing people/players, but lacked in that final department of making the actual on field/during the game decisions. Maybe Dusty’s player management skills weren’t as good as always thought though, or maybe just time had run it’s course with this club. I think ultimately, Dusty wasn’t on the same page as Jocketty.

    Dusty was never Walt Jocketty’s guy. I don’t think they ever saw eye to eye, and but they both tried to make it work for as long as it could. I think Walt would have fired Dusty last year even after a 97 win season. Just think if the Reds had won that wild card game. Dusty is probably still here. But maybe the expectations are almost hard to meet now in Cincinnati since they’ve won so much in the regular season of late. I gurantee you though that other NL clubs are a little more worried about the Reds in the future with a different manager coming on board, at least playoff wise. If you are a Cards, Pirates, Giants, Phillies, Braves, fan, etc., you weren’t really worried about the Reds making the world series in the NL I don’t think.

    I tend to blame Dusty, and I think it was inevitable that he be let go. Batting Cozart 2nd wasn’t a good decision, but in Dusty’s defense, there weren’t many options. The lineup at it’s core is inconsistent. Frazier, Cozart, Mesoraco, Hannigan, Phillips, Bruce…all inconsistent hitters. Lots of 6-7 hitters that the Reds tried to fit in the 2-5 spots.

    And still they won 90 games…largely because of pitching which can’t be overshadowed. I would like to see the Reds find another proven ace type of pitcher. Maybe David Price or someone like that.

  14. Not sure if anyone has stated the obvious reason for Bryan Price but it holds true:

    a)$$$$
    b)$$$$
    and
    c)$$$$

    The Reds can’t really afford some of the names being bandied around (although they could very well do a great job as Red’s manager):

    Girardi

  15. If you want a list of people who are probably most likely to be considered, it’s

    anybody who has been a big-league manager who currently is not retired.

    Determine those guys and you will find the only list you need.

    Except Valentine.

    • @Johnu1: Every single coach who has coached or will coach is hired with “no experience” in the majors at some point in their managerial career. I don’t think it’s too far fetched to think the Reds might consider someone w/o big league managerial experience.

      I agree with your initial statement that those folks will be the most likely to be considered.

  16. If Price DOES get hired, I think it will be very interesting what he does with the coaching staff. Remember, he’s worked with all the incumbents for several years now. He’d have some strong opinions about them as coaches and opinions that are shaped by direct interaction rather than just message board speculation.

    • @ChrisInVenice: I think they should see if Kenny Lofton (or someone of similar skill-set) would want to be a bench coach to help the team re-learn how to run the bases and help Billy Hamilton with slap-hitting and bunting!

  17. All of the names I hear, Price, Riggleman and Deshields would be horrible managers. I am convinced the Reds will make a bad hire. None of these 3 are better than Dusty. People are dreaming if they think Price would be good.

    • @gschiller13: It would be nice to go at least one day without hearing this broken record. If you feel that strongly about it, send a letter to Walt Jocketty.

    • @gschiller13: Mrs. Baker – among the entire pool of living candidates, who would you like to see hired as the manager of the Reds? Aside from your son, of course, who was regrettably (in your mind) relieved of his duties.

    • @gschiller13: It’s quite funny though how you have not offered any viable names that I have seen. Instead of just hashing out the same statement over and over, let’s see who you would pick and why.

      Oddly enough, everyone who has wanted Price, has provided reasons of why. The general consensus is no one wants Riggleman (myself included) due to his past and his penchant for temper tantrums. Sweet would have been an excellent choice, he did very well with the Louisville Triple-A team in his tenure with them. Price is the obvious choice because, he, unlike Dusty, holds people accountable and I’m sure would take blame when he deserved it, and also called out the players who needed to be called out.

      You however, have not provided anything other than “that’s a terrible idea”. So, let’s see what your “excellent idea” is, and why. Restate the question as well please.

  18. So I guess I will put this here because there’s not really anywhere more appropriate for this, but what’s with all the McCutchen MVP hype? Sure the guy’s having a real good season, and has like a bajillion WAR, but can he honestly be any better than 3rd in the voting?

    I just don’t see how he could possibly beat out Goldschmidt, let alone Kershaw…..

    Kershaw leads the NL in ERA, Shutouts, Strikeouts, ERA+, WHIP, and WAR (according to Baseball-Reference).
    Goldschmidt leads the NL in HR, RBI, SLG, OPS, OPS+, Total Bases, and IBB.
    McCutchen leads the NL in nothing.

    …yet all I see everywhere is how McCutchen should be NL MVP. I don’t really understand it.

    • @ToddAlmighty: Part of the MVP voting consideration is how valuable that player was for his team. In other words, to consider where a team would be without a particular player’s contribution. Larkin wasn’t the best player in baseball when he won his NL MVP award. Other MVP voters tend to not like voting for pitchers because of the Cy Young award. So, that’s why McCutchen ends up in the discussion. In all fairness, I think the Pirates would be nowhere near as good if McCutchen hadn’t been there all year. If I was a voter, I’d probably lean towards Goldschmidt but I could argue that the Pirate’s wouldn’t have sniffed the playoffs without McCutchen.

  19. There you go again you old Cossack you, making such sense.

    I agree with almost everything you posted and as I was reading how many times you wrote the word manager, I was reading it with the word that business is using to replace the word “manager” and that is Leader.

    Management really is to make sure the players make the bus to the ball yard.

    Leadership is all about making players play up to their potential. Dusty was probably very good at making sure everybody made the bus. It seems like he was wanting someone to become a leader from within the team to hold others accountable. That happens when it is modeled at the top first

  20. I know it’s the Cards and Pirates but we are all baseball fans and I wanted to give everyone a heads-up that Wacha has no-hit the Pirates through 7 innings.

  21. I think that Mr. Jocketty will make the right decision. He will hire his man. I think that it could potentially be a “dark horse” perhaps someone that is a current third base coach or bench coach. I do not see Davey Johnson as a candidate. He wears on GM’s after a couple of years although he gets results. Riggelman should never be a candidate. There is one reason…445 winning percentage. I am not sold on Price and I would have to believe that if he was THE top candidate that they would have named him as manager immediately. I wonder if Mr. Jocketty will reach back into the Cardinals’ organization and pluck someone that he knows from his years there. Here is a question. Could Dave Duncan become the pitching coach in Cincinnati? He has a relationship with Mr. Jocketty and he is said to be seeking employment for next season. If the man is Price, that would give him some very strong help immediately.

  22. I like Brian Price as manager and Charlie Manuel as hitting coach/ bench coach. Keep Billy Hatcher at first and a new 3rd base coach. Corky as bull pen coach and Ted Power as pitching coach. Keep both asst. pitching and hitting coaches. Have Eric Davis act as a special assistant in OF play and base stealing. Should be interesting.

  23. I do find this whole thing kind of odd because both Bryan Price and Brook Jacoby have been with the Reds for over 4 years, Price since 2009 and Jacoby since 2006. Now the talk is Jacoby is not a good hitting coach and Price is a good manager. But just a couple of years ago the roles were reversed. The Reds have had one of the best offenses in the majors under Jacoby and except for this year the Reds pitching staff have been average at best. Before Cueto in 2012 our best pitcher in 20 years was Aaron Harang and that’s not saying much. The Price=good and Baker/Jacoby=bad line coming from the masses doesn’t really make much sense. The truth is the Reds had holes and did nothing about it. I know Castellini had spent a lot of money but if you want to win you cant have holes like we had. I really hope for Jockerty’s sake that Marlon Byrd is unheard of forevermore and the Pirates lose to the Cardinals. This player that would have cost the Red’s 700K and batted second kinda tore it up in Pittsburgh. He batted .364 in September, went 2-4 against us with a homer in the WC and is the best and most clutch hitter Pitt has besides McCutchen.

  24. I do not agree Julian. Our pitching was great in 2011 and 2012 as pitchers of all types matured under the direction of Bryan Price:

    Cueto, Bailey, Latos, Chapman, LeCure, Parra, Simon, Hoover, and Mike Leake

    You could make a case that he has not helped Bronson, Marshall or Broxton as they were veterans before arrival. Ondrusek may have plateaued.

    That is a good body of work by the coach. And with Bronson’s comments about Price, I see a veteran who really is sold out to Price’s approach.

    I have seen no such progression from the other half of the team. We score runs in bunches on home runs, but have no idea how to hit in situations, hit and run, move runners over and overall have a very poor idea of the strike zone.

    Bruce and Votto have emerged, maybe Phillips. Stubbs had a world of talent. I would have loved to see Price work with him. Heisey has not improved. Frazer and Cozart had challenging years after average years last year. I like Mesoraco’s approach, maybe he is a dusty casualty. Ludwick? He could have used an approach this year. Slump and hot but was a developed vet when he arrived. Choo is in same developed vet. Robinson?

    I think that Todd and Zack would have developed better under a Price approach than they have under Jacoby.

    and with Billy Hamilton coming, we need someone who can develop young talent.

    That is Price. Chapman couldn’t get his control, Cueto had communications issues, Latos was a hothead, Bailey was too stubborn.

    The results from those 4 sold me on him being manager. But then to take a guy like Manny Parra, and the body of work with Parra this year has been amazing as to what a coach can do for a player. Same thing for Simon the past 2 years. He coaches guys up at all levels on this team.

    He is my guy. And Price would know how good Jacoby is.

    Give him the keys Mr. C

  25. There is no perfect candidate to manage the Reds, but Price has more to offer than the others mentioned. If it’s not the Reds, then another team will hire Bryan Price.

  26. I do not see the Yankees letting Joe Girardi slip away, unless there are issues that make Girardi want to leave. I believe the Cubs also sense that Girardi is becoming less and less of a viable option so they are moving on to other options. Mike Scioscia is not leaving the Angels. Tony LaRussa, Joe Torre or even Casey Stengel are not going to manage again.

    WJ has been in this game a very long time. I have to believe that he has a very short list of candidates he wants to seriously target and no one outside his inner circle will know who might be on his list. I think he realizes the importance of this decision and will strive to ensure that he makes a good, valid decision. If Bryan Price, with a resume that lacks any managerial experience, is actually on WJ’s short list of serious candidates, I’m sure WJ intends to satisfy himself that the qualities Price has demonstrated and qualities he would bring to the position would overwhelm his lack of managerial experience, or not.

    I see good, sound reasons for take a slow, methodical approach to the selection process. The other side of that coin are the multiple managerial vacancies for some excellent opportunities and the same candiates being seriously considered by WJ are probably also being seriously considered by Theo Epstien et. al. If WJ does dally at the post, he could lose the best candidate(s) available to other opportunities.

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