–The Reds will be looking for a big right-handed bat in the off-season, evidently. Matt Holliday and Magglio Ordonez are names mentioned that might be available in trade, but I can’t see either of those happening. The only free agent that fits that bill is Pat Burrell, but he’s just like Adam Dunn. If he came here, the WLW mouth-breathers would run him out of town in short order.

On Edwin Encarnacion. Dusty Baker’s comments seem generally supportive of EE (who is now my favorite Red, for what it’s worth). You must remember that Edwin is still only 25 years old.

This quote was interesting, though:

There have been suggestions that Encarnacion could be switched to first base, which would move Joey Votto to left field.

“I think Edwin would be a good first baseman,” Baker said. “It’s just that Joey Votto is good, approaching excellent if he continues to improve the way he’s improving. A lot of times, instead of moving two people out of position, I think it’s better to just move one. We’ll have to see who’s available, who we want to get and this and that.”

This is the very definition of schadenfraude. Of course, I lived in DC for three years (while in law school), and I still have a soft spot for the Nats. I just don’t feel sorry for any organization that hires Jim Bowden to lead them. They deserve whatever they get.

Offseason Outlook for the Reds, from mlbtraderumors.com (tip of the cap to Redlegs Rundown).

–Ryan Hanigan in line to start for the Reds in 2009.

–Edinson Volquez was scheduled to start in the final game of the season, but now he isn’t going to make that start. I’m happy with that. No reason to overwork him; let Adam Pettyjohn make that start.

Also, for what it’s worth, Pettyjohn’s start on Sunday, in the last game of 2008, will be the first start by a lefty for the Reds all year.

16 Responses

  1. Kevin

    My favorite line from the John Fay article:

    Would Baker like to get that kind of bat for the Reds?

    “Oh, hell, yeah,” he said. “Just put him right in there in the middle of the lineup.”

    Looks like the Reds are going to shop for a bat. That’s good news, to me. Unfortunately, according to the offseason outlook, we’ve got about 14 million to spend. That means Ordonez, Holliday, or Burrell would all take up any money cleared up by the absence of Junior and Dunn. Also, I fully expect a trade for Holliday to cost us more than just Homer Bailey, like people are suggesting on Fay’s comment board. I would expect Cueto + prospect or Bailey + Stubbs or even more. I prefer to see them go the FA route, sign Burrell who’s probably not as good as the trade options, and then shop Bailey and others on the trade market to fill another hole, like catcher, SS, or the other outfield position with a cheaper, young guy.

  2. per14

    Holy crap!!! I actually agree with Dusty on something. Votto is suddenly pretty darn good over there at 1B. I can’t locate it right now, but according to the numbers, I think he is even an above-average 1B for the year.

    It doesn’t make sense to move both EdE and Votto out of position. Either keep EdE at 3B or put him in the OF and find a better 3B. I just don’t want the Reds to put EdE in the OF and use that as an excuse to make Keppinger the starting 3B. Which, darn it, will probably happen.

  3. Kevin

    That’s true, it will be probably happen. But, the fact is, the Reds seem to have too many wholes and too small of a market to fill them all with legit starters. I think we inevitably have to break camp with at least one of our bench-player type, in-house guys being a starter or at least in a platoon. I think the best two candidates for that are Hanigan and Keppinger. I prefer Keppinger being a starter and finding a good outfielder and a good catcher. If not, Hanigan as a starting catcher and upgrading both outfielder positions.

  4. Kevin

    Maybe the most upsetting part of our “offseason outlook:”

    After that, they’ll still be under $60MM (with a fifth of the payroll going to the closer).

  5. doug

    Kevin, the Rockies have told the Reds Holliday will cost Cueto, Juan Francisco and another prospect. They don’t want Homer Bailey.

  6. GRF

    Given all the other problems this is almost certainly a self-evident bad idea, but I will throw it out there anyway. With Cordero taking up somewhere 15-20% of the likely payroll, is there any sense in moving him to someone in “win now” mode that needs a closer? I would say Mets, except they don’t seem to have anything left in their system that would be interesting.

  7. Kurt Frost

    They could move Cordero for a broom and a sack of pencil erasers just for the salary relief.

  8. Kevin

    He’s way too expensive and takes up too much room on our payroll, but he’s an ok closer, and if we moved him, who would close for us? I say we keep him, just because moving him wouldn’t get us much, and we’d be without a closer again. Although he hasn’t put up numbers like he did in 2007, he was a part of fixing our bullpen woes from that season.

    Dough, where’d you see that the Holliday trade would cost Cueto, Francisco, and one more? That’s interesting. I don’t think it’s worth it, I say sign Burrell or somebody else.

  9. Kevin

    Oh. Thanks.

    Sorry for spelling your name wrong!

  10. NickP

    Why would the Reds trade for one year of Matt Holliday? We won’t be a contender next year.

    That would be a disaster.

  11. Travis G.

    Wonder if the Tigers would take Cordero for Ordonez?

    Detroit would address a glaring weakness and save just a bit of money for each of the next three seasons while adding an additional year of salary in 2011.

    There might need to be a couple of additional pieces on either side, but that seems like a good start.

  12. Kevin

    That’s a pretty good idea, Travis. I imagine, though, that the front office will be afraid to trade Cordero away after making such a big fuss about his signing in the offseason. I remember it being a big part of Castellini flashing his wallet at us to show that he’s serious about winning, and I think trading him away kind of makes that gesture look like sort of a bust, since a 12 million dollar contract for 70 innings obviously makes no sense for our budget size, and I feel like they’d sort of be admitting that, while Castellini wants us to think he’s all about spending big to turn the team around.

    Say it did happen, which I’d possibly like (it’d leave us with some more money to work with on the other holes we have, and with our other trading chips), who would close next year? Could Burton do it?

  13. pete

    You heard it here first, the Reds will win 90 games in ’09. BTW, I wouldn’t trade Cueto straight up for one year of Holliday.

  14. Mark T

    Is there any possibility that they could negotiate a contract extension with Holliday if he were interested in coming to Cincinnati? I don’t think giving up Cueto and Francisco would be a bad deal in exchange for a right-handed bat like his, but not for one year in the middle of a rebuild.