Titanic Struggle Recap

Reds drop sixth in a row

Final R H E
  Atlanta Braves (67-61) 8 8 0
  Cincinnati Reds (61-67) 0 5 0
 W: Teheran (12-9)    L: Holmberg (0-1)
 FanGraphs Win Probability |   The Worldwide Leader’s Box Score    |   Game Photos

If you ever were looking for evidence that the folks at FanGraphs don’t know everything, check out the first inning on this graph where it indicates the Reds had more than a 50% of winning tonight. The boys were a little less than relentless tonight.

game

Good news! Aroldis Chapman pitched a clean *eighth* inning. Chapman has now pitched five innings for the Reds in the month of August — the same number that David Holmberg and Pedro Villareal have thrown and fewer than Dylan Axelrod. And only four more than Skip Schumaker.

 

68 thoughts on “Reds drop sixth in a row

  1. Honestly, Steve, if you guys wanna pack it in for the year, nobody here would blame you. I think the whole staff ought to take a week’s vacation from the Miltons, I mean the Reds. At least Fay is getting paid to watch this crap.

  2. MLB.com-John Smoltz thinks the Reds ought to trade Cueto to the Angels and get some offense, So who do they got that we want? I am sure that Trout is not available.and if the Reds are going to make that trade they need a couple of guys. Any thoughts?

    • I’m a big believer in trying to trade cueto this off season. Heck, I would have tried to at the deadline. I think the reds need to get younger and I don’t trust cueto to stay healthy if the reds sign him to an extension. But he’s not clearing waivers to get to the angels this season. They would be one of the last teams to get the chance because they are in the other league with one of the best records. As far as the off season goes, I think there are several teams that match up with the reds better than the angels do.

      • Probably Cy Young runnerup for prospects so we can contend in 2015.

        Sounds reasonable.

        A better idea would be to get Johnny to sign an extension, since the Reds are in a good bargaining position for next year since they can keep him for a extremely cheap $10 million.

        • What does his team option have to do with bargaining position? Extended Cueto would be the very definition of buying high. He will definitely want more than Bailey since he’s been much better. We’re talking about 5/130 or even 6/150 on top of the 10 mil for next year. With the contracts of Votto, Bailey, Bruce and Phillips, Frazier and Mes entering arbitration, Chapman getting arb raises for the next two years, etc. I just don’t see how they can throw out another 20-25 mil per year contract unless they up their payroll to 150-160 mil or have about 10 roster spots taken up by guys making the minimum. If they had a great farm system, maybe they could get a lot of production from pre arb guys. But they don’t.
          The other big issue is that I just don’t think Cueto will hold up. There’s a reason scouts like pitchers with big frames and broad shoulders: they supposedly last longer. Cueto had made it over 200 innings once, in 2012, and the next year he missed most of his starts due to injury.
          Finally, I’m just opposed to any contracts over 70-80 mil and 4-5 years for any pitcher. They are just too risky to invest like that. Pitchers get injured. Pitchers lose effectiveness without any warning. Look at Verlander this year. A Cueto extension would be a mistake.

        • Since you’ve already stated that you wouldn’t give any pitcher a top flight contract, the rest of your post is superfluous. Essentially you’re adopting the same position that the Pirates did for 20 futile years; trade players once they become good because you don’t want to pay them. That’s a recipe for continued mediocrity or worse.

          It’s kinda obvious but money now is worth more than money in the future, so the fact that the Reds could dangle a higher salary for 2015 than what Cueto could otherwise get is a useful bargaining chip. I think your estimates are way off; Bailey got $105 million for 6 years; there’s no reason to believe that Johnny is going to insist on a 5+ year deal averaging more than $25 million a year. If he does, then that is a different story but I sincerely doubt he will; his prior deal was quite reasonable considering he had shown 3 years of improvement and was already close to a top of the rotation starter.

          Cueto’s a bit short, but he weighs almost as mush as Kershaw. I don’t know of any study that says 5’11” starters don’t last as long as taller ones.

          Quite simply, there is absolutely no way the Reds can get comparative value for Cueto. Trading him before 2015 makes it that much more unlikely that the Reds contend. And if the Reds don’t contend, how likely is it they can sign Latos or Leake even if they want to? Basically, you’re talking a fire sale starting with giving up one of the best pitchers in baseball. And I can’t see how that benefits the team.

        • Kevin, what are you talking about man? The Pirates are good now because they built their farm system up. They didn’t sign any pitchers for huge contracts. They signed Cutch and Marte before they were even arb eligible and as a result got team friendly deals on those two. I believe they tried to do the same thing with polanco this year, but he turned them down. The Pirates didn’t become competitive by signing huge deals to guys who will be in their 30’s, like you want to do with Cueto. The Pirates don’t support your point at all, so I have no idea why you brought them up.

        • As for Bailey, his contract was 6/105 with an option for a 7th and 5 mil buyout. The first of those years was already under team control though. The reds would have had to pay Bailey about 10 mil for 2014 if they didn’t sign the extension. So the reds got 5 free agent years for 95 mil, plus at least 5 mil for the buyout makes it 5/100. AAV of 20 per, and Cueto has been much better. So why would you think something like 25 is out of the question?

        • The Pirates have been doing it your way for upwards of 20 years; it has brought them 1 playoff appearance. NO, they haven’t paid for pitchers and that’s why they have none. they’re 11th in the NL in ERA. They’ve been fortunate to develop a few outstanding players, but their future hardly looks appealing given their lack of pitching. The Pirates having 20 years of sub .500 teams because they didn’t want to pay players strongly supports my position; why you want the Reds to emulate that tradition is hard to fathom.

          Your creative math aside, Homer got 6 years for $105 million counting the 2020 $5 million buyout. His salary for 2014 is $9 million and for 2015 $10. Cueto will want more at the start and a bit more at the end. But your estimates of more than $25 million per year average salary is about 50% higher than what Homer is going to get. I doubt Johnny is going to be that greedy; if he is than we can always trade him for value at the 2015 deadline and get the fabulous return the Rays got for Price.

      • Cueto will get more than Bailey, to be sure. But Cueto will also be 30 in the first year of his next contract. Bailey will be 29. That’s a small difference, but the age difference might (and maybe should) put a bit of downward pressure on Cueto’s ask. Here are a few comparable contracts, with AAV and age at start of the contract:

        Verlander $25m/30
        Felix Hernandez $25m/27
        Zack Grienke $24.5m/29
        Cole Hamels $24/29
        Matt Cain $21.5/27
        Adam Wainwright $19.5/32

        All of these pitchers are more accomplished than Cueto. I don’t see him commanding $25 million at age 30. Maybe $22-23 million. Equally important is how many years he’ll ask for – five or six likely.

        • I’ve been assuming that the Reds offer Cueto a 2015 raise as part of a extension. A $15 million in 2015 and a $20 million in 2016 at the start of the contract would give Johnny more up front cash than $10 million in 2014 (the club option) and say $22 million in 2016. If three more years are necessary to do the deal, than you could up the money in stages to $25 million a year.

          Say the result is that Johnny gets offered $105 million for 2014-18; is it so preposterous that he might take it?

        • I think your calculation at the end should be $105 for 2015-2019. The 2015 raise might matter (although the Reds didn’t give Bailey a raise, in fact, with the way his contract was structured, Bailey took a pretty severe short term pay cut). But compare the offer you mention to Cueto getting $23/5 years plus his $10 million for 2015. So his total compensation would be $125 for 2015-2020. It’s possible the difference in 2015 between $10 and $15 million would matter more to him than $20 million more overall, but my guess is not. I think the Reds would have to match the contract length they did with Bailey, because others surely will with Cueto.

    • No way to trade Cueto until winter. He would *never* make it through waivers.

      That aside, not sure the Angels have anything the Reds want other than Trout. They didn’t have a particularly high ranked farm system BEFORE trading 4 of their top 10 prospects during this season.

      That said, I am sure Trout would love to come to the NL. He’d probably be a two time MVP winner already if he wasn’t in the AL with Cabera.

  3. Anyone done the math on not just how many innings Chapman has pitched this year, but how many “high leverage” innings he has pitched versus the other relievers?

  4. HAHA, all I can say. Reds are in full blown collapse mode. Look toward 2015 should be the goal. We need to get younger, we need a LF and we need a better BP and a better bench.

  5. Who said things couldn’t get worse? What is happening nightly cannot be allowed to continue without some organizational move to express accountability and/or explain what they are going to do to set things right in the off season. They might not have the horses to win but they sure as heck can play better and more professionally.

    Right now in the way they are playing and losing we are seeing what we saw in the last week of the season last year yet there is a month and a week+ remaining.

    The work of 5 years spent to turn around this franchise could largely be washed away in the next 6 weeks if nothing is done to stop the rot. Just look within the division at how far the Cubs came and how far they have fallen and how hard it has been for them to try and claw back.

    And before smugly saying not with this ownership, consider that they fiddled while Rome burned last year and have sat on their collective hands this year.

    • What’s really scary is this idea that maybe Bob C is calling more shots than we previously thought. If the performance of the front office over the past year and a half is just Walt, then that can be dealt with. A GM can always be fired, and Walt’s contract is up at the end of the year. But if Bob is trying to play GM too, and not allowing Walt to sell high on any of the pitchers for example, well that’s a big problem for reds fans. I haven’t been this pessimistic about the reds future since 2006. I love that Bob wants to win and is willing to spend money, but he should leave the team building to the guys he hired to do that.

      • I just watched the video on mlb.com with Bob C. talking in the broadcast booth. He feels the Reds are still in it this year. Also according to Fay, when asked about making a trade this year, Bob C. said he was concerned about ruining the team chemistry. That’s scary stuff.

        PS Not that anyone cares about losing 8-0 instead of 7-0, but while listening to the Castellini interview I could view that part of the game, and Holmberg struck out Simmons looking with a perfect curve ball, right over the plate and well above the knees, that was called a ball a few pitches before the HR. How do umps get away with that degree of incompetence ? (Not to mention the players.)

        • Bob C. should consider if doing nothing for the last two years to upgrade the offense has improved the team chemistry. And does he really feel the Reds are still in it this year? Hopefully Bob is not following the well worn path of Mike Brown.

        • This isn’t a slam on Jocketty, but the Reds would be lucky to have Jeff Luhnow as GM. Luhnow is probably one of the smarter GMs in baseball. They have taken full advantage of how the new draft rules work, and are going to be absolutely terrifying in the very near future.

        • First off, Kevin, Lunhow is a very bright guy and has stocked that team with talent despite not having any decent talent in the majors or the farm when he was hired.
          Second, maybe you should do some research on aging curves and the history of contracts greater than 80 million in the last 15 years and how well they worked out before you spew any more passive aggressive criticism towards people who realize that the reds can’t keep all their pitchers. The reds have the highest payroll in the division and are in 4th place. Spending lots of money does not equal winning

        • The Astros stink and will continue to stink. The guys you worship in Oakland and Tampa Bay have been less successful than Walt over their careers. This season as regards the Reds is a fluke (for reasons already explained) though if they had listened to your advice they would have fallen out of contention much earlier and would be looking at having little prospect to contend in 2015, too.

          I don’t know if the Reds can keep all their starting pitchers; I do know that trading Cueto for prospects will increase the chance they won’t be able to keep any of them. Players aren’t merely motivated by money; if they were the Reds wouldn’t be able to keep any of their star players as there are other teams that will always have more money. If the Reds are to keep their good players they have to maintain a competitive squad. The “I don’t want to pay good players” mania that you expound is a sure recipe for non-competitive disaster in the near future.

        • “The Astros stink and will continue to stink.”

          They stink right now, by design. They’re following the same steps the Nats followed. Stink–> Draft elite prospects–> Promote–> spend $$$.

          “The guys you worship in Oakland and Tampa Bay have been less successful than Walt over their careers.”

          Oh, how about recently? Even disregarding the disparity in payroll, can you honestly say Jocketty has outperformed his counterpoints in Tampa and Oakland since 2008? Also, guess who was a star employee working for Walt that was and is credited for much of the Cards’ scouting and development under him?

          “I do know that trading Cueto for prospects will increase the chance they won’t be able to keep any of them. Players aren’t merely motivated by money; if they were the Reds wouldn’t be able to keep any of their star players as there are other teams that will always have more money.”

          It’s great that you know exactly what motivates the Reds players. You must be a smart guy to do that from your couch.

        • Also, this whole “trade or not trade Cueto” discussion is ridicuclous.

          It depends. It’s not some black or white decision. It depends on what they get, and what it would take to re-sign Cueto, and what the Reds would get back. We’d all prefer to keep Cueto, but that terrible contract extension you threw out there a couple days ago isn’t going to cut it.

        • Well it’s good to know the Astros have designed it so they presently stink but will soon be a powerhouse that sweeps aside the teams that are currently more than 20 games ahead of them.

          The A’s have about the same record as the Reds since 2008 and the same number of playoff appearances (assuming they make it this year). The Rays have done a bit better only because they made it to the World Series in 2008 the year Walt was hired as GM part way through the season. The Rays seem in a downturn and getting back up in their division will be quite a chore. Unlike the Reds they did not have an avalanche of crippling injuries in 2014.

          Your snotty last sentence isn’t worth a response. You might believe that the level of competitiveness a team exhibits has no bearing on their ability to retain or attract free agents but that belief is about as logical as your belief that where a player bats cannot possibly have any effect on his stats.

        • Check out this lineage.
          “On October 3, 2007, Chairman of the Board of Directors Bill DeWitt announced that the Cardinals ‘had cordially and respectfully’ parted ways with Jocketty based on philosophical differences of player development. DeWitt named Mozeliak the interim GM. Dating back to the year before, tension arose after Jeff Luhnow, now the Astros’ GM, was promoted to vice president of amateur scouting and player development. After more than a decade as GM for Jocketty, Luhnow’s promotion tacitly signaled he had usurped that sphere of Jocketty’s authority.”
          “DeWitt cited divisiveness in the baseball operations front office as the reason for Jocketty’s dismissal.”
          Luhnow replacing Jocketty in Cincinnati would be funny.
          With the paralysis in the Reds front office to do something to improve the Reds, I wonder if there is some “divisiveness” going on now in the Reds front office?

      • Fully agree. I think it’s very possible that we’ve been giving Jocketty too much grief because Castellini is tying his hands. If Castellini if forcing the long-term deals on Jocketty and isn’t allowing him to move certain players, then he’s effectively not allowing the GM to manage the team. If that’s the case, Jocketty should just retire or move on anyway. No GM wants to be in that position.

      • You are spot-on. It is terrifying. From some of the things I have heard recently, Walt’s hands were evidently tied at the deadline. This restores some of my confidence in him individually, but reveals a much more problematic issue than simply having a GM who does not understand value, markets, and planning for the future. I am afraid that the only thing different from the 2015-2018 Reds and the recent Phillies teams is that the Reds over paid, underperforming, guys previously signed to long-term deals will not have World Series rings on their fingers.

        • What a bunch of hysterical baloney. The Reds have exactly FOUR players under contract as far as 2016; three for 2017 and two beyond. Plus their salaries this year are $65 million less than the Phillies. The idea that the Reds have sank a ton of money into long term contracts is nonsense.

  6. RECAPS have all of our permission to just post the box score. We don’t even need the FanGraphs. No commentary. No Positives. No Negatives. No Milton (well, maybe Milton, he makes us smile). That’s it. For sanity’s sake, just take the rest of the season off. And Thank You for all the hard work & dedication. Brutal season.

  7. Finding the recap was as hard a time as the Reds have in driving in a man on 3rd with no outs. (of course it could be my Doh! level of intelligence)

  8. Talk of trading Cueto to the Angels is in some of the threads. Angels would never give the Reds Cueto’s worth in return. What about Leake, though?

      • I think we could get back Josh Hamilton for Leake…and probably Simon…and Diaz, and probably Cingrani, . That’s why any deals with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are ridiculous.

        • Yeh and arguably the worst contract in baseball right now is Josh Hamilton’s.

        • Don’t be so dramatic, Pin. Hamilton has 3yr/$89m (jesus) left on his, BUT…

          -Choo has 6yr/$116m left on his and he’s been worth -0.2 WAR this year.
          -Fielder has 6yr/$144m left on his and he’s also worth -0.2 WAR this year.
          -Alex Rodriguez STILL has another 3yr/$61m despite being suspended this year.

          I am sure there’s some others.. but yes, it’s still an awful awful contract. Lol… the only thing the Angels have that the Reds would want is Trout which sadly I don’t see happening.

    • Having examined the top 20 prospects in the Angels’ system, they have Nothing of value. Their top prospects are in Rookie, Low-A, or Advanced-A. It should be noted that even Smoltz didn’t think it would happen. As far as trading Leake to the Angels, the Angels are looking for Ace types. What I liked about Smoltz’s comments was that he thought the Reds should be aggressive about putting more offense on this team. He has that right. I think, though, that the time,to trade your aces(if you do) is when the Reds are out of it next year. By then, you will know if any of your AA or AAA pitchers is ready to move up and be effective. You will also know if Cingrani is going to be able to start.

  9. Whatever happen to the Hamil-run? Is it just me or has someone put some kryptonite in super Billy’s shoes? Seriously I’d like to compare his WAR from the first 60 games to his last 60 games.

  10. Think of the fans who bought tickets for this Atlanta series around the All-Star break under the belief they would be seeing championship-caliber baseball in late August. I’m just happy I’m not among those who drove several hours to get to the ballpark to see David Holmberg and his astronomical ERA pitching for a team that appears to have thrown up the white flag and quit on its rookie manager. As dismal as the last six weeks of the season promise to be, it will be interesting to see if and how the Reds can rebound in 2015.

    • It really just depends on what Walt does during the winter. It’ll take more than a Choo, though, to right this ship. If the organization is delusional enough to write this season off to injuries, and stay the course, my advice is to invest in some protective, padded, headgear.

      • Walt isn’t under contract for this winter. I believe as it stands now he’s done after the season is over. So either he gets extended and fans revolt, or it really just depends on what the new GM does during the winter.

        • If Castellini has been tying Jocketty’s hands, as has been intimated here, then I would only sign a contract to come back if he untied my hands. The other thing that might be a factor in all this is the TV contract that comes due.

  11. Surely the organization knows and sees the issues the Reds have. I do not accept they are so baseball-dumb they haven’t identified the problems. In fact, Walt shopping around Latos and freely admitting his willingness to part with Ludwick proves the front office is aware of the problems.

    Now… If they are aware of the issues, and it seems to me they are, then the real question is why hasn’t anything been done to solve them?

    Money is the obvious answer, but then you look at the very large contracts signed recently by multiple Reds (Bailey, Votto, Broxton, etc) and you have to really rule that out.

    So what is the answer?

    • Doesn’t it seem possible that those big contracts are the reason why money is an issue now? Also, I say tiresomely, that being willing to trade doesn’t necessarily result in a good trade–the trading partner has to offer somebody whom the Reds believe to be an upgrade over the chip(s) they are trading away. I don’t know, but would guess, that other teams would be mostly interested in the Reds’ pitching, and we all know how important pitching is, and how difficult it is to build a good staff, so I would expect WJ to be cautious. One silver lining here might be that this free-fall, while enraging all of us, makes a stupid, short-term, quick-fix deal less likely (which seems to enrage some of us). I’m so glad that none of this really matters very much. Also glad that I elected to watch an old episode of Foyle’s War instead of the game.

  12. Does Price come back as manager next year, yes or no?

    I don’t want to hear about injuries or how he was never given a fair chance or what you think SHOULD happen, I want to hear what you think WILL happen.

    I’m starting to believe that he’s out the door unless the Reds at least finish with a winning record.

    • I still think there’s a need for a full wipe. Shoulda done it last year when they fired Baker. You can still see the traces of the problems. When you fire a manager, you really should clean house otherwise you likely won’t get the changes you want. It’s why the team this year looked an awful lot like the team at the end of last year. Also the managing looked the same at times as last year. The bullpen usage looked the same as last year. The awful third base coaching is (somehow) even worse than last year.

    • Same thought crossed my mind last night. Probably Price returns but with a month+ to go, this could get fugly. Weird how hopes we so high leading into the All-Star break then collapsed right after.

      • Likewise. I don’t think the front office and the owner want to let go the guy who was instrumental in building the Reds starting pitching staff. To keep him in the organization was the reason he was made manager in the first place. Price will be back. A new GM is another matter.

    • He signed a 3 year deal and had the Reds still in it despite crippling injuries until last week. Sure, he’s made some rookie mistakes but he deserves at least another year.

      I still think a lot of what went wrong this year is flukeish; the Reds have an incredibly bad record in one run games. They have still outscored the opposition. Unless they have really mentally thrown in the towel (which is possible), I still think they’ll finish over .500.

  13. According to the Fangraphs chart, the patient is dead. No response. Flat lined. Please place a “Do Not Bring Back to Life” notation in the file and bury it. ….but the fan way deep down in me still holds out some sort of flicker…..I’m thinking it will be far less torture once this team is officially eliminated. It might help my state of mind.

    • Nice observation and analogy. Flat lined. Its the front office that needs a Do Not Resuscitate order.
      Watching the Reds play in the second half has been like watching NASCAR. Just waiting for the big wreck to happen.

  14. Steve McGarret: “Walt Jocketty, you are under arrest for the murder of the Cincinnati Reds 2014 season. Book him Dano.”

  15. I see that Detroit P David Price pulled a Mat Latos last night against his old team the Rays.
    Price had 8 IP, 1 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 K and he took the loss. And Detroit has an offense.

  16. Price is the man in charge of setting the tone for pitching throughout the organization I believe he signed a long term deal on that title, so i doubt he is going anywhere. I would not be surprised to see Jocketty, who came here saying he didn’t want to be the GM, move to a different position. There are many decisions to be made here, but status quo is not one of them.

  17. I know everyone had high hopes at the all star break, but I knew at the start of the year we were one injury away from having a non-winning season. The roster was/is PAPER THIN, especially on the offensive side of the ball (pun intended.) Also, for the past two years I have screamed and kicked at how we have spent almost $40 million on the bullpen. That is the reason the reds cannot afford a high end bat or trade for a salary ridden deal for a bat. All this money tossed at the bullpen and it has been nothing short of awful. Marshall out all year, and Chapman used less than hoover or lecure or parra or any other useless bullpen arm (oh yea, he’s the most expensive too; I hope keeping chapman to put fans in the seats as worked out well for u castellini/jocketty). Until we get rid of the bullpen salary issue, we will never be able to afford a quality LF or SS bat. The organization has been hell bent on starting/relief pitching because they say it wins…how many playoff series have we won??? World Series Appearances?? Wins?? That’s right we were knocked out in the first round every time.

  18. Sheldon is reporting that Holmberg optioned to Louisville and Corcino promoted from AA to pitch out of bullpen. Oh no. The Sharknado Bullpen.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s