06/06/2005

Sigh

Before the Reds came to town, the Rockies had the worst record in baseball.

And they still swept the Reds. Can it get any worse?

And will John Allen “rattling the cage” make any difference?

Blame Chad for creating this mess.

Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.

You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

Join the conversation! 21 Comments

  1. Yes – it can.

    I’m looking to see who does get the nod when/if DanO or Miley or Gullett gets the boot.

    I’m thinking Vern Ruhle is going to get a major league job again.

    A high strikeout, high ERA team is going to lose more than they are going to win.

    Would losing 100 games really get someone’s attention? Is it going to really find a buyer for the 51% stock that is “supposively” for sale?

    Will someone see the talent that is Adam Dunn & Austin Kearns?

    Where is Gary Burbank when you REALLY need him…

  2. I’m not ready to include Austin Kearns in the same line with Adam Dunn. What exactly has Kearns done?

  3. Just a fun fact…

    The Baseball Prospectus stat of the day is for the top rally killers (double plays) in the NL. Guess who’s at the top? The Mayor!!! And if you look at the complete ML chart for the least number who do we find at in the fifth lowest spot: Adam Dunn, he of the recent chair removal and Coors benching.

    Now I know that lineup order isn’t everything, but when you have look at these two extreme cases isn’t there a solution that presents itself?

    Maybe we could bat Dunn third and Casey fourth, so when Casey grounds into a bases loaded DP at least one run will score. Now that’s what i call small ball.

  4. Zing!!!!

  5. While I am frustrated that our 1B has the power of a great defensive utility player, I still don’t think he is the problem on this team. Believe it or not he is actually #81 in OPS in the majors this year. That’s not great, but it’s certainly worth a spot in this lineup. Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather have a guy like Derek Lee at 1B, but I can’t honestly say that Sean Casey is hurting this team with his performance. I’m not about to vote for him in the All-Star Game, but there are about 19 other roster players that I’d rather see go before Casey…

    I will echo the Austin Kearns comment. Adam Dunn is worth whatever we can keep him for, but Kearns, though injured a lot, has not come close to his expectations. If he were performing as expected then I would like to see Kearns, Pena, Griffey and Dunn at 1B over Casey, but I don’t think we’ll ever see all of them healthy and Casey has consistently performed as well as the others with the expeption of Dunn.

  6. I won’t complain when WMP takes Kearns’ playing time when (if) he returns. I really like Kearns, but I can’t understand why he hasn’t been able to put it together. (And I’m not saying that just because he’s been a high-priced albatross on my roto team for the last three seasons, or because he cost me a milkshake bet, by being outperformed by Cliff Floyd).

  7. IMHO – Kearns is a talent who seems to be sure watching pitches go by. I would think if he’d swing the bat more often than not to make contact, he might be a pretty good player. Of course, we could have one of the following play into the psyche of Kearns.

    1 – He didn’t like the 3b “transition”
    2 – He is still spooked from the Ray King incident.

  8. Damn that Ray King!

  9. Let’s don’t give up on Kearns just yet. I’m hoping that in the next week or two Uncle Carl will clean house with Miley and the entire coaching staff, including Gullett this time, gone. Maybe we should keep Hume around for giggles. Seriously, its going to take a huge shakeup in leadership to turn this club around. Almost every player on the roster has had success in the bigs at some point. However, as a team they suck. I don’t have the answers but somewhere along the line, the Reds have to come up with someone who can get the best out of these players. We used to have a guy like that. His name was Jack McKeon, but Bowden screwed him over so bad, he went off and won a world series.

  10. Trade Dunn, Casey, Randa, and Griffey to get some pitching. I’m tired of Dunn’s attitude. In fact, the fun-first, win-second attitude of most of this team has ran its course.

    This isn’t Miley’s fault though he has made some questionable decisions. The players aren’t performing and the worst thing that you could do is give them the impression that they can play poorly and exhibit bad attitudes to get their manager fired. O’Brien really screwed up this offseason, particularly with Milton, but the good news is, they didn’t have to trade any of their good prospects away to get the players, so they didn’t lose any of their future.

    Trade ’em away, get pitching, and bring up the kids. I think they would be better immediately.

  11. What kids? Aside from Eddie Encarnacion we have no major league ready hitters to bring up. We have no one in the upper levels of the system ready to contribute. zip. zero. nada.

    And besides, if this team was winning everyone would spouting the same old b.s. about how the Reds fun clubhouse was keeping the team loose and relaxed.

    We keep talking about the hitting(myself included) when it isn’t really the problem. At last check we were 12th in the majors in runs scored. The offense is getting the job done. But it’s awful hard to win when you have to put up 8 runs a night. Even the Cards and Red Sox couldn’t do that.

    Leave the offense as it is, maybe adjust the batting order and playing time a bit, but for the most part leave it alone.

    We need to do something about the pitching staff from hell. The rotation: Milton (because we can’t dump THAT salary), Harang, Claussen, and pray for rain. Maybe trade Kearns for a ML-ready pitcher. The A’s and Braves have some. Now all we need to do is wait until Hudson comes back and we’ll be fine. Release Wilson and Ortiz. Belisle can spot start.

    Now I know this plan sucks, but what else can we really do?

  12. That’s because winning is supposed to make it fun. If those guys were traded, I’d bring up Kelly for CF, bring up Encarnacion and move him to 1B (so he wouldn’t commit 40 errors/season,) bring up Bergolla for 2B, play Freel at 3B and Pena in LF.

    The offense would be fine. They’d still have pretty good power, probably hit for better average, and have much better speed, though they would strike out at a comparable rate. And we’d have pitching! Plus that defense could be great.

  13. The offence wouldn’t be fine. Kenny Kelly couldn’t replace Griffey’s offence. Trading Dunn would be the stupidest move in the history of the franchise. Bergolla proved he couldn’t hit big league pitching. He will be a valubale bench player in the future. But will probably never be more than an adeqate 2B. And he won’t be close to that this year. In case you missed his big league performance .125/.263/.188. OPS .461. He’s not a big leaguer yet.

    Pitching is the big problem with this team. Pitching and leadership, both from the manager and management. Both need big changes.

  14. No, Kelly certainly wouldn’t bring Junior-like power to the bigs, but like Ryan Freel and Scott Podsednik, speedsters who suddenly showed major league potential at age 26, he could hit for a good average, probably better than Grif, and have more speed, (and more useable speed, as they wouldn’t be afraid of letting him steal bases.

    But for replacing the power of Dunn and Griffey, I think Pena + Encarnacion would at least come close. I also think you have tremendously underestimated Bergolla. He’s hitting the ball well, with BA over .300 last time I checked, and that defense is something to behold.

    I used to be in the keep Dunn camp, but that was because I thought he would develop to hit for a decent average and cut down on strikeouts. He hasn’t made any adjustments to that swing, and I think he’ll be a career .250 hitter with a ton of home runs, and a career RBI total that is not reflective of someone with his HR numbers.

    A problem with most of the scenarios people lay out for bringing in pitching is the large number of pitchers who could be in the rotation: harang, claussen, ortiz, wilson, milton, hudson, hancock, ramirez, kelly, belisle. If you bring in pitching, where do you put them? Its unlikely that Milton’s contract will be swallowed, and they may relegate Wilson to the bullpen, but I don’t think they could stomach his contract. Ortiz is less of a problem looking forward, because he only has a one year deal. Its a mess in the rotation, and if you were thinking of some of the pitchers who don’t make the cut for the rotation could pitch in the bullpen, there is an equally large logjam there.

  15. You guys all seem to want to trade away this team. I know I’m in the minority here but I still think the Reds have a good nucleus of position players. The problem is pitching and managment. I scrap Miley, his coaching staff, and all but about three of his pitchers. Throwing away our outfielders, Randa and Casey doesn’t make any sense to me. By the way, I was only half kidding when I questioned whether or not Sparky was still available to manage. We need a manager and coaching staff that gets the most out of their players, someone along the lines of Gardenhire, Leyland or our old friend Trader Jack.

  16. Blue, I read my post and it sounded hositile, and that’s not the way I wanted it to come out.

    That said, Dunn is still young, and still has things to learn about hitting. I’m not saying he won’t be a career .250 hitter with 100 RBI’s a year, but lets not give up on him yet(we could also do worse). If he’s still hitting this way two years from now, then we can talk trade.

    I love WMP, but I don’t think at this point he’s much different from Dunn. Lots of power, lots of strikeouts. I don’t think you’ll be as happy with him as you think if you expect him to be all that much different from Dunn.

  17. Who gives a darn if Dunn hits “.250 with a ton of homers”? His OBP will be around .400 and his SLG will be over .500. That is awesome.

    How many times do we have to go ’round and ’round about this? Batting average is darn near meaningless. Strikeouts, even less relevant. Hal Morris hit .300, and he was bad. Jason Romano doesn’t strike out very much, and he sucks.

    Some people seem to think that unless Dunn hits .340 AND hits 40 bombs AND cuts his strikeouts down to 75, he’s “not living up to his potential.”
    There is one Albert Pujols (and there used to be one Barry Bonds). For every other person in baseball, you have tradeoffs. Dunn doesn’t hit singles.

  18. I haven’t checked the splits the past two weeks, but last time I checked Dunn was batting to lead off an inning more than twice as much as Casey (because he is batting 5th vs 3rd.) Then everyone complains about the lack of RBIs. Bat him 3rd and the RBIs would be there.

  19. Great point, Greg. With Freel and Lopez getting on base more than anyone else, why not bat him 3rd, put Griffey behind him so pitchers will think twice about pitching around him. It would be nice to start seeing some 3-run bombs…

  20. I haven’t checked the splits the past two weeks, but last time I checked Dunn was batting to lead off an inning more than twice as much as Casey (because he is batting 5th vs 3rd.) Then everyone complains about the lack of RBIs. Bat him 3rd and the RBIs would be there.

    That’s a common occurance with a team that decides to move the runner over at all cost (Dave Miley) the first runner gets on (or 2nd) the next 3 make outs and number 5 leads off the inning, according to a Bill James piece I read once he claims that the number 5 hitter leads off more innings than any other batter on average that isn’t slotted number 1.

    If Dunn batted 3rd he’d have more rbis and more runs scored.

  21. I think we should outlaw any use of batting average in any discussion.

    As someone once explained to me, any statistic that puts the same value on a single as it does a home run is a worthless stat.

Comments are closed.

About Chad Dotson

Blame Chad for creating this mess. Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, "The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds" is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad's musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine. You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

Category

2005 Reds, Reds - General