06/12/2005

Kearns to AAA

Heard on 700 AM, WLW, that Kearns was sent down to AAA Louisville today, and OF K. Kelly was recalled. ESPN confirms this, and reports that C Dane Sardinha was also recalled and Jason LaRue was placed on the bereavement list.

My take is that they are sending Kearns down to get some regular ABs to get his stroke ironed out. He’s not going to get them in the majors with Wily Mo Pena playing so well. Kelly will be the spare part OF in the mean time.

I’m wondering if there could be a deal brewing soon, either Kearns of someone else, whom he would back fill for.

Stay tuned.

Later,
Tom

Join the conversation! 32 Comments

  1. WOW:( I love Kearns, but I hope he gets traded for his sake. He deserves better. He hasn’t played the way he can, so I hope he can move on and have a great career.

  2. I’m not a big fan of Reds management, but this seems like a good move. With the way Pena’s been playing, there just isn’t any room for Kearns right now. I think the fact that they’re sending him down to get some regular at bats suggests that they still see him having a future with the club.

    The worst thing they could do is try to trade him right now, when his value is at its lowest. Let him work on things in the minors, keep shopping Griffey around (quickly, while the hamstring is still in one piece!), and hopefully Kearns will have an improved swing and a spot in the outfield by the all-star break.

  3. This may be big. I agree it sounds like a deal is about to take place.
    As for Kearns himself, I’m old enough to remember a player named Paul Householder. During the late 70’s and early 80’s Householder was supposed to be the future of the Reds. He tore up the minor leagues but he just didn’t have the career everyone thought he would. I’m concerned that Kearns might be this generation’s Paul Householder. Of course I could be wrong and he could end up being this generation’s Paul O’Neil.

  4. By the way, I’m stunned that Romano’s not taking Kearns’ spot on the roster.

  5. Kearns raked in at the Show until Ray King sat on him. I just hope he can get it together.

  6. Kearns is way better than Housholder (a Dick Wagner pumped loser if there was ever one) However Kearns is lost and has options, shake his world up and see what happens, he wasn’t taking the world by the throat anyway.

    The game has a long history of guys needing a shakeup, Kearns is one apparently.

  7. I agree with Brian entirely. Kearns should be an all-star, and he needs both playing time and some sort of shake-up or change. I also agree that his troubles all seemed to start after that fat Ray King sat on him.

  8. I HATE Ray King for that:evil:

  9. Screw Ray King. Believe me guys, I hope my Householder/Kearns comparison is wrong.

  10. I definitely agree with this move. Pena has deserved to win the right field job, espeically with the way that Austin hasn’t performed in his absence. Hopefully this will get Austin going again.

    I worry a little bit about the comments that Austin made in the article on reds.com, but hopefully he takes the right attitude and uses this as an oppostunity to get better.

    Eric

  11. Another thing to think about concerning Austin Kearns. He and Dunn are big buddies. Dunn’s already got a case of the Red ass. If the Reds trade Kearns, there’s no way that Dunn’s not going to react to that. Stay tuned. First the chairs, then the Graves jersey, a Kearns trade next? The soap opera may just be heating up.

  12. Very True

  13. I could be wrong, but why would the Reds demote Kearns if they’re thinking of trading him? Usually, you showcase the guy your trying to get rid of, as they’re presumably doing with Aurilia. Demoting Kearns hardly adds to his trade value. It seems to me that it’s more likely to mean that they aren’t trading him and want him to take the time to regain his stroke until a position opens up. I still think Jr. will be the one to go if he stays healthy.

  14. When Kearns was drafted I remember hearing the comparisons to Kevin McReynolds. At the time I remember thinking wouldnt the organization want to shoot a little higher than projecting their 1st rounder?

    Simply, Kearns is a flawed player currently. There is certainly time to work it out, but his year-by-year performance is not on the positive side of the curve.

    Pena is the future, and must be played 150 games a season. Ditto with Dunn. There’s not a lot of room for Kearns as a corner outfielder on this ballclub, unless Griffey/Casey are either injured or traded.

  15. Casey needs to be traded and Dunn needs to play first. That solves all the OF problems and will give us some pitching prospects.

  16. McReynolds was a #1 overall pick, IIRC, and even though he didn’t turn out to be a Hall of Famer, he was a pretty darn good hitter (115 career OPS+, playing his prime in Shea and Jack Murphy). I swear, 75% of these draft-day comparisons are appearance related:

    Kearns, a 6’3″ white dude with good power and decent speed = Kevin McReynolds. If the kid is lefthanded, like Mr. Jay Bruce, he’s Jimmy Edmonds or Larry Walker.

    Every slap-hitting left-handed white guy is Brett Butler. Every black second-baseman used to be Frank White…unless he was left-handed and was Lou Whittaker.

    Every stocky righthander who throws over the top is Roger Clemens or Josh Beckett; everyone with a short-arm deliver is Darryl Kile.

  17. I still think that Casey should be traded with Dunn moving to first and Kearns playing OF…but right now, Casey is outperforming Austin, and would probably draw more in a trade.

    I think giving Austin some time to right himself in AAA is a good idea, and hopefully O’Brien is shopping Casey for pitching.

  18. Whatever trades the Reds make, they need to get two good starting pitchers and (I think) a good left-handed prospect for the bullpen. (I’d see if the Rockies would take Dunn for Chacon and Kennedy.)

    Speaking of the bullpen, I think the Reds are on the verge of something special. Look at the recent numbers of Todd Coffey in the majors, and Chris Booker and Simpson in AAA. Throw in Wagner, Keisler, possibly Wilson, and a lefty prospect, and that is very formiddable.

  19. Okay. A caveat…

    Simpson was rocked today. But he had been stellar since making the adjustment from the mountain air, until now.

  20. I’m not sure we’ll ever see Wily Mo in 150 games…he just seems so injury prone early in his ML career.

  21. While playing in the minors, Kearns projected to be a better hitter than Dunn. That led to a lot of excitement of what kind of outfield the Reds would have for years to come. Unfortunately,only one of the two have come through as expected so far, and the Reds don’t even realize how good of a player they have in Dunn.

  22. If Dunn would make an adjustment to his swing, he could reduce the rather large area of the strike zone that he can’t hit.

    If we can solve our starting pitching woes by trading Dunn, we should do so. Its not like its going to leave a hole in the lineup or something. If the starting pitching is fixed, they’ll still score plenty of runs without Dunn.

  23. Trading Dunn is ludicrious. How many teams are trading their 25 year old superstars? Why would you trade your best player while keeping the burdensome contracts?? I’ve heard this bandied about on the radio…”trade Dunn because you aren’t going to pay $X million to 4 players next year.” Well, for one, they did this year! And Danny Graves contract won’t be on next year’s payroll (nor Jimenez or Larue.) There is more than enough money there to pay Dunn. Also, most teams realize the concept of “sunk costs”, trade the ovepaid players and send $$ with those players in order to get some minor league value in return.

  24. Why do we have to trade anyone? A lineup with Dunn, Casey, Kearns/Pena, Griffey, Freel and now Lopez is pretty potent. The Reds should keep what they have in position players and concentrate on this group of young starting pitchers, who if they can stay healthy look as if they may have solid MLB careers. As starters the Reds have Harang, Claussen, Hudson and Hancock. Hancock, I admit he’s the dark horse in that crowd, but he lasted most of last year with the club and finished with a winning record. He must have some talent. The bullpen, once the real strength of the Reds is a weak point. There’s no clear closer. Wagner and Weathers are inconsistent. Merkcer’s been pretty solid. If you look at it, aside from the fall of Danny Graves, the problems on the pitching staff have started with the guys, O’Brien brought in, Milton, Ortiz, Weathers and Weber. Combined with the injury/poor performance of Wilson, the Milton and Ortiz’s starts have left the Reds so far behind the bats can’t catch up. I don’t really know, but I suspect that one of the reasons the Reds have had problems driving in runners in scoring opportunities is because the hitters are pressing, trying to come back from holes the starting pitching has left them in.
    To sum it up, I say the Reds should keep their position players, and focus on developing those young starters I mentioned above. Don’t panic. This season is not going to be a good one. There’s no way around that. Spend money, (wisely as Chris and Greg would say) on some reliable relief pitchers.

  25. If we trade Dunn we better get Felix Hernadez or Delmon Young.

    Which isn’t going to happen. So keep him.

  26. I wouldn’t pay too much for all that Cincy media hype of Hudson and Hancock. Hudson, seemingly, has good stuff, but he cannot even sniff pitching 200 innings in the majors. I would think he is a prime candidate to be a future major league closer.

    Hancock projects to be a 4th starter at best, meaning he’ll probably settle into a 5th slot/long reliever type with some club. Think Todd Van Poppel but slightly better. Look at how the Phillies valued him…they traded Machado AND Hancock for Todd Jones. Either the Phillies got robbed or they didn’t give up much to get a couple of months of service out of Jones.

  27. Greg,
    I hope you’re wrong about Hudson and Hancock because the Reds have much of the Reds’ future invested in those guys stepping up into the starting rotation. Even if they don’t do all that well, can they be any worse than Milton and Ortiz have been?

  28. I’ve been wrong more than I’ve been right, but I think the Reds have guys that are currently in AA and AAA that be more a future for the Reds than Hancock. However, I don’t think the Reds have their future invested in Hancock. I think he is part of the “quantity over quality” mentality that if they get enough arms, someone will eventually come through. The Reds have made several pitching decisions in recent years based on a pither’s win-loss record.

    Unfortunately, W-L record is a poor indicator of future performance. Case in point, Eric Milton. He was in the top 10 in run support last year (that is, number of runs his team scores when he pitches.) Of course he won a lot of games, the Phillies scored more runs when he pitched than when the other guys started. How many runs your team scores for you is just a matter of luck.

    Short-hand list of guys the Reds have signed (re-signed) or traded for because of W-L record: Shawn Estes, Jimmy Haynes, Ryan Dempster, Paul Wilson, Eric Milton, Seth Etherton.

  29. Greg,
    I noticed that there are no hall of famers in the bunch. A list like that just shows how poorly the Reds have done over the years evaluating pitching talent. Is the organization just that clueless?

  30. I’m with Nate. Much as I love Jr., I’d trade him for pitching now, live or die with Kearns, Willy Mo and Dunn in the of.

  31. Surly,
    A trade of Griff for some good pitching might be in order if the Reds could contract the deal out to some other evaluators of pitching talent. This organization is miserable at finding talent on the mound. Griff is putting together a 30 hr, 90+ RBI season. I just forsee another Rob Bell deal in the future where the Reds in a state of panic, trade a productive player off for someone elses phenom. Of course, two years later we all play that, “I wonder whatever happened to that guy” game.

  32. Re – Post #30

    That would be great – but you are eventually going to end up in September with an OF of Chris Denorfia, Kenny Kelly, & Jacob Cruz…

    That’s the injury/trades OF…. 😯

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