–In case you missed it, reliever Mike Stanton was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. He was replaced by left-hander Mike Gosling, who gave up a hit in two-thirds of an inning yesterday.

In 13 appearances with AAA Louisville — all starts — Gosling had a 3.00 ERA.

–Next issue: what in the world is wrong with Bronson Arroyo?

–I know we keep saying that the Reds are better than they’ve been playing, and that they aren’t that far from being a good team. But when are they going to start improving? Do you realize they just lost two of three, at home, to the team with the worst record in the major leagues?

That’s just bad, ladies and gentlemen.

–Adam Dunn: very good. A .275 batting average, 938 OPS, 19 homers (second in the NL) and 46 RBI. If Krivsky trades Dunner, this team will have a gaping hole in the lineup.

–One shortstop in the National League has more errors than Alex Gonzalez’s 11. I thought he was supposed to be the best fielder in the league? I’m still waiting to see his supposed brilliance.

For the record, Felipe Lopez has five errors this season for Washington (in many fewer chances, to be fair).

It’s a good thing Gonzalez is having the best hitting season of his life, because he’s been sub-par defensively. Whether the hitting will continue remains to be seen, but given Gonzo’s career numbers, I’m not optimistic.

–Off to the west coast tonight, to face Oakland and Seattle. Hope we have better luck against the AL’s western clubs than we ordinarily do against the NL on west coast swings every single year.

About The Author

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.

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14 Responses

  1. Tampa Red

    You cite Gonzo’s career hitting stats as a reason to not be optimistic that he will continue to hit. How about Gonzo’s career fielding stats as a reason to be optimistic that he will improve his glove work?

    Honestly, we’ve now had nearly a year to evaluate THE TRADE and I don’t see how either club could be even remotely happy with the results.

    The Nats are paying Kearns and Lopez around 12 mil combined this year and getting about a .230 BA and what, about 50 combined RBI’s? And Wagner is likely done for the season.

  2. Brian

    –One shortstop in the National League has more errors than Alex Gonzalez’s 11. I thought he was supposed to be the best fielder in the league? I’m still waiting to see his supposed brilliance.

    For the record, Felipe Lopez has five errors this season for Washington (in many fewer chances, to be fair)

    The best player in a nine is the player that makes the most good plays in a match, not the one who commits the fewest errors.

    Henry Chadwick 1870

  3. GregD

    A-Gon’s fielding percentage was a career best .985 last year. I figured he wouldn’t replicate that, but didn’t think he’d drop back to the numbers he posted early in his career. I’ve not been impressed with his range (not been unimpressed either. I don’t see what all the hoopla is about.) Gotta agree with Chad on this one. If his extra base power disappears, then he’s costing the team runs.

    I think the fair point is why this team needs a defensive starter AND a defensive replacement (Castro.) I think you need one or the other. Both is redundant and leaves the manager with a weak bench.

  4. Mark T

    When Dunn is hot, he can carry a team. It’s those damned cold streaks that annoy me – they aren’t few or insignificant.

  5. Phil Rizzuto Parmesan

    So Wayne, buddy, how’s that “pitching and defense” thing workin’ out fer ya? Sheesh, what an awful performance Sunday. To reach way back in the past for a description – bush.

    This is not a team that is just a few pieces away from contending. This team seems to have some possibilities, but it is riddled with question marks, too.

    Question marks exist behind the plate, across the infield (with the possible exception of 2B) and at each outfield position. To wit:

    (1) Ross is an offensive sinkhole and, besides throwing out base runners, is defensively sub-par. Moeller isn’t the answer, and Valentin should never be allowed to don the shin guards. There’s no help in the high minors.

    (2) The 1B platoon is old and doesn’t hit for enough power. Neither are under contract after this season. We think Joey V is the future, but we don’t know if he will hit big league pitching consistently, left handers at all, and be defensively adequate. But we can begin to get answers to these questions about Votto in the second half and should.

    (3) If it weren’t for the Angels/Dunn rumor, I’d call 2B the one spot where we are set for the next few seasons. We should be, but it looks as if Wayne has other thoughts.

    (4) At SS, we can only hope Alex remembers where he left his glove. He’s here through 2009 at least and unless his fielding picks up, he’s not tradeable with that contract.

    (5) Practically everyone here says give EdE the job and let him play. But his defense is inconsistent and his errors seem to snowball. As long as he starts out good, he stays good. But bad plays seem to multiply with him. On a club as defensively challenged as the reds, he’s got to do better to gain management’s confidence (and management jerking him around is part of his problem). The question is are we seeing the real EdE and, if so, can we live with him?

    (6) The OF: Dunn has been discussed ad nauseum, but if he’s gone we aren’t going to replace his offensive production easily – and until we add Koufax and Gibson to the rotation, we’re gonna need that offense. The jury’s out on Hamilton and will be for awhile. If Junior isn’t traded (and I think he should be), he’s a couple steps away from another pulled hammy. Our best outfield options in the minors are at least a year away. If Norris Hopper is the answer, what the Hell is the question?

    (7) After Harang, the rotation is all question marks. As I’ve said before, if Arroyo isn’t hurt (and he says he isn’t), then I fear we are watching Bronson’s regression to his career norms. I think he can be a league average innings eater, which is what his history suggests, but his recent performances bring even that into doubt. Good teams and bad teams alike are getting in his kitchen with regularity. Belisle and Bailey are certainly question marks at the monment, but I do think there’s every likelihood that they will turn into positives in time. Lohse in an enigma and may always be. Still, if Bailey and Belisle reach their potential, we could do worse than Harang, Bailey and Belisle, with Arroyo and Lohse or an unnamed 5th starter (the Lizard?) bringing up the rear.

    (8) Ah, yes, the bullpen, which is a segue straight into management because I believe the biggest problem with this bullpen is usage. Yes, we need at least one power arm and a reliable lefty, but Narron’s incomprehensible management of his bullpen arms is the biggest culprit.

    Someone said in another thread that he wasn’t in favor of five-year plans. I’m not entirely certain I agree, but since most of this century has been spent with the organization spinning it’s wheels and getting nowhere, I doubt anyone has the patience for such a plan.

    But isn’t some plan necessary? Can anyone discern a plan in either Narron’s day-to-day on-field managemant or Krivsky’s “that’s baseball insider stuff” front office moves? Narron simply isn’t the right manager for a team that needs to get young fast and then learn to play together. And Krivsky – what to say that hasn’t been said?

    We are collectively holding our breath as the deadline approaches because we have little confidence in the GM’s talent evaluation and trading skills. What will this club look like on the first of August? Will he ship off our best run producer for more Proven Veterans â„¢ for the bullpen? Or will he admit 2007 is a goner and trade some of our age for young prospects and salary relief? Stay tuned for the next episode of Days of Our Redleg Lives 😀

  6. Chad

    I wanted to make a quick point.

    Tampa Red is exactly correct above. Given Gonzo’s reputation and career up to this point, I would expect that he would be better defensively than he has been thus far.

    I had to re-read my post, because I thought I had made that point when I wrote it. I was thinking it, but I guess I forgot to type it.

    If I had to guess, we’ll see a complete U-turn from Gonzo in the second half; he’ll revert to his usual no-hit, good glove self.

  7. Phil Rizzuto Parmesan

    Good lord, that was long. i should never be allowed that much coffee before I type. Apologies for being so long-winded.

    >i>If I had to guess, we’ll see a complete U-turn from Gonzo in the second half; he’ll revert to his usual no-hit, good glove self.

    Maybe, maybe not. A-Gon just turned 30. Could he have lost a step? Does anyone know how most of his errors/misplays occurred? IOW, are they related to range?

  8. RedsFanInMd

    Chad-You failed to mention that Lopez is playing mostly second base.

    As far as the Reds looking at a 2B if they could get Howie Kendrick I would do it and figure out how to make it work. Maybe play him at third and play EE at first or in left.

  9. Steve M

    In the 5 years that Alex Gonzalez has played at least 130 games at the big league level, here are his averages:

    BA: .256
    HR: 16
    RBI: 61
    2B: 31

    Error: 20
    Fielding %: .968

    At around $4 mil a year, I’d take that. And I bet he ends up pretty damn close to that this year.

  10. GodlyCynic

    Fielding percentages are meaningless. You can’t tell me just by watching Gonzalez in the field that he isn’t getting a glove on far more balls than either Lopez or Clayton ever dreamed of. His range factor of 4.14 is much better than Lopez’s 3.7 at SS (Lopez has only played half of his game at short).

  11. Daedalus

    Marty’s always ranting about the Reds lack of fielding practice. However, Alex’s errors may prove his point.

    I don’t care. I like him, and he gets to more balls than any shortstop we’ve had since Barry in his prime.

  12. Chris

    Re #2: The game’s a little different than in Chadwick’s day. They have gloves now. I get the point, though.

    ReL #5: By my math, the Reds 1bs are SLGing .468. Spectacular? No. But it would rank 8th in the NL.

    Re: #8: Numbers-wise (God forbid I watch a Nats game), Lopez looks like a nifty 2b, and still a pretty lousy SS.

    From watching, I agree with GC that Gonzalez has very good range. Strangely, the balls he’s booting are the ones right at him (based on memory alone). He’s making some tough plays, but also boofing some easy ones.

    I suspect that his hitting numbers will be boosted by GABP, overall, but remember, Gonzalez typically closes up shop, hitting-wise, in the second half.

  13. RedsFanInMd

    The fact that the Reds don’t take infield practice blows my mind and Marty has every right to rant about that. For a guy like Narron, who wants his players to play “the right away”, it’s a shocker that he doesn’t make the team take infield.

  14. Phil Rizzuto Parmesan

    By my math, the Reds 1bs are SLGing .468. Spectacular? No. But it would rank 8th in the NL.

    Isn’t this damning with faint praise? Mind you, Hatte has provided a good deal more than what I expected and the 1B platoon isn’t a glaring problem per se. But when Dunner takes his power to an AL contender in a couple of weeks, getting .468 SLG out of 1B isn’t going to be enough. Of Course, Hatteberg (and possibly Conine) is likely changing addresses too, so this becomes moot.