2013 Reds

More Reds-related reading material

A few articles to pass the time until the next titanic struggle between your Reds and the stupid Cubs.

It must be Cincinnati Reds day at FanGraphs:

Here’s a Q&A with Bryan Price by David Laurila from spring training where he discusses his philosophies as a pitching coach.

Price: “When you look at our success last year, we had one of the lowest walks-per-nine-innings in baseball. We had one of the highest percentage of first-batter efficiency — getting the first batter of an inning out. Those are things we encourage, but having a philosophy doesn’t mean you’re going to execute something. What it comes down to is having good athletes who are good competitors.”

Here’s a piece by Jeff Zimmerman on your favorite contract-extension candidate, Shin-Soo Choo, and his tendencies to get in the way of baseballs. His conclusion? Choo stands close to the plate, but this mini-surge in HBP is unlikely to be sustained.

As for his hit-by-pitch total in 2013? He hasn’t changed his approach, so the expectation is that he’ll end up back to normal from here on out. Choo isn’t doing anything to make himself more hittable, so he’s not going to sustain a record-breaking pace. This is early-season noise, like Justin Upton‘s nine dingers in 18 games. It’s one part signal and one part noise, or something along those lines.

And Dave Cameron dissects Dusty Baker’s comment about RBI vs. OBP in the context of Brandon Phillips’ fast RBI start.

To get back to Baker’s quote specifically, RBIs are essentially a function of on base percentage. It’s like saying cake is better than flour, butter, and sugar, or a building’s penthouse is better than it’s foundation. The latter is only made possible by the former. RBIs follow on base percentage. It is hard to act superior to something you rely on for your existence.

On a lighter note, as a Reds’ fan, I’d make this proposed trade in a heartbeat, but I suspect the Tampa Bay Rays wouldn’t.

It would fill five key positions for the Rays at the cost of one ace, and for the Reds the acquisition of Price would provide a front-end playoff rotation of Price, Cueto and Latos through 2015. Talk about trading Price has already started, but the Reds might be able to fly beneath the radar once again and jerk the carpet out from underneath the baseball world once again.


29 thoughts on “More Reds-related reading material

  1. I’d make that trade in a cocaine-heartbeat. No way that’d be enough though.

  2. That trade would be greatest trade in Reds history. Reds gave up two top prospects and a good starting pitcher (at least at the time of the trade he was pitching well) for Latos, and it took super-prospect Wil Myers to get James Shields from them. Don’t think that offer goes through unless at least the names Choo, Bruce, or Hamilton are involved… but hey, we can dream, right?

  3. The article says “”Broxton, Chris Heisey and Logan Ondrusek — and two top prospects — Daniel Corcino and Donald Lutz — for Price.”


    It’s an interesting article/thought until he gets to the actual proposal.

    The Rays aren’t making this deal without Billy Hamilton. If the Reds would need the salary flexibility to add someone like Price, they’d need to include (and the Rays accept) a major league starter like Leake or Bailey to the mix.

    It’d take something more like: Hamilton, Leake, Corcino, + maybe another player or two for Price, IMO.

    Next year’s rotation would be Cueto, Latos, Price, Leake/Bailey, Cingrani.
    They’d have a big hole in Centerfield if they didn’t extend Choo.

    I don’t see the Reds jumping to that kind of payroll, but it would certainly put an exclamation mark on the “win now” window.

    • David Schoenfield calls Phillips the most overrated position player in the majors. Got to see it to believe it:http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=9199994He starts by claiming that BP is considered the second-best 2B in the majors. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard that claim. It goes downhill from there.

      yep, I wasted a minute or two of my life watching that nonsense. It was a textbook case of the strawman being punched. What “rating” is he talking about? then, his evidence is that BP’s HR #s are inflated by GABP? Whatever, Poindexter. I’d take BP every day and twice on Sunday, but I reach that conclusion by watching baseball – so it is obviously flawed.

    • @bearcats2004: I don’t know who I’d rate ahead of Phillips and Cano so I think it’s safe to say he’s widely considered the second best 2B in the majors. And I can maybe understand making the argument that he’s overrated say when he signed the contract, but he’s playing like an MVP candidate this season so I don’t get it.

      • @eric nyc: Doubtful. Pedroia would probably be considered the best 2B under Cano, partly because of the big market/east coast media bias, but the numbers also support it.

        Ian Kinsler has also outperformed BP over the past 5 years, though he has durability issues.

        Ben Zobrist is also severely underrated, I’d prefer him over BP simply for the flexibility he gives to the team.

        Aaron Hill is arguably better right now as well, though it’s difficult to determine b/c he has lacked consistency.

        I love BP, but he is overrated. Just not as overrated as the Schoenfield says. BP’s durability & consistency are great assets to the team, and his defense, while not as good as when he was younger, is still very good. I’d say someone

        I don’t think BP deserves MVP on his own team. He’s had a good baseball card stat year so far, so I guess it’s not surprising people see his RBI total and call for it.

        • @CP: I think BP is arguably the top 2B in the NL, but top 5 in the MLB. It’s Cano…large gap then Pedroia…then Kinsler/BP/Zobrist/Hill in a cluster. A good place to be regardless.

        • @CP: Plus, BP will chill out for a bit and slow down with his numbers. I was saying that in the gamethread last night. He tends to binge and fast, stat wise. Not as noticeable as Bruce (or at least the bottoms aren’t as low). It all evens out in the end to his career numbers, which is fine.

  4. I’d trade Chapman and Travieso. Gives the Rays top of the rotation talent now and later. If they simply don’t see Chapman as a starter, then we don’t have a deal. They need major league ready talent NOW. To trade Price w/o replacements would be tantamount to surrender. Of course, if Mike Moore wins 15 by the all-star game, Price becomes a bit more expendable.

  5. God that trade woudl be a dream, especially if they sent cash with it. Corcinco barely has a place in this organization as it stands and Broxton is completely useless with that huge salary now that we’ve resigned Chapman to the pen. My only worry would be that Heisey drives his stock so far down playing every day that he becomes a worthless trade chip. Price, Cueto, Latos, Bailey, Cingrani? Are you kidding me? Not to mention that would make Leake expendable and he’s only driving his trade value up.

    • My only worry would be that Heisey drives his stock so far down playing every day that he becomes a worthless trade chip.

      Too late. He was most valuable in 2010 hitting PH homeruns like a demon. He isn’t worthless, per se, but not valuable either. If a team needed a 4th OF, he’d suffice. He doesn’t enhance a trade.

      • LOL @ the trade. Rays traded James Shields for 2 of the best prospects in all of MLB in Wil Myers & Mike Montgomery.

        Yet, the Reds get a better pitcher who is under team control until 2016 for 2 non-elite prospects, a aging relief pitcher with a bad contract, an inconsistent relief pitcher whose peripherals are terrible, and a 28 OF who has never played a full season in the majors.

        All the writer had to do was check for comparable trades (yes, I know Wade Davis was in the deal, but he’s essentially Mike Leake).

  6. that trade proposal reminds me of 95% of those in an ESPN chat – 3-5 extra replacement-levelish parts/non-premium prospects for a star. apparently the article’s “author” has no idea what the Rays braintrust is about or thinks it’s 1993 again.

  7. From Price:

    “As far as philosophy, you have to understand that one size doesn’t fit all.”

    “Again, if there’s a philosophy I have, it’s that you can’t create an environment whether everyone is going to be successful under one umbrella of guidelines.”

    “I don’t claim to be the resident know-it-all by any means, but I just haven’t found one common thread that allows you turn everybody with the same amount of talent into the same type of performer.”

    These are quotes from one of the coaches on Dusty’s staff? Dusty better get him straightened out, and quickly, before he translates such a philosophy to the hitters too.

    Additionally from Price:

    “We’re all trying to get our guys to pitch ahead in the count, command the fastball, be attentive and involved in their preparation, and to command a presence out on the field. We want them to maintain focus and composure in difficult times.”

    The on-the-mound composure transformation in Latos and Bailey has been dramatic, although not complete.

    No convuluted responses wrapped in tired cliches. Straight answers to straight questions, how refreshing. A coach confident enough that he realizes he doesn’t always have all the answers and is willing to consider alternatives? A coach humble enough and responsible enough to deflect credit to the players and shoulder personal responsibility for shortcomings? Could this man be the next manager of the Cincinnati Reds? And if so, could this happen before the 2015 season, please?

  8. I’m so glad the Baker OBP/RBI got attention on a national scale. See Dusty, it’s not just a bunch of kooks on a fan blog.

    • @TC: Phillips, though, has become better at those situations. He will shorten up with 2 strikes and (at least seems to, without checking the stats) will more get hits to right field than he did a couple of years ago. And because Votto’s high OBP this year can be attributed to a lot of walks, in which he only gets to first, Phillips is not necessarily getting easy RBI chances.

      My definition of clutch is the ability to have the same calibre of at-bat in a high leverage situation that a hitter would have in an ordinary 4-1 game in the 4th inning. Drew Stubbs, for example, couldn’t do that, but Phillips can.

      Jay Bruce shortened his swing beautifully on both his homer and his double last night. He’s going to have an excellent season.

  9. Reds and Rays don’t match up well trade-wise. Both minor leagues systems are pitching dominant.

    Now, if someone like Bruce is included in the deal, you could see a 3 way deal with Bruce going to Tampa, Price & a prospect & an OF from a third team headed to Cincinnati, & a group of Leake/Corcino-type prospects going to a third team.

    Obviously, not very likely. Bruce and his contract are very valuable commodities. Bruce, Frazier,and Chapman are the only trade pieces they have on the MLB roster. Bailey, if for some reason the Reds collapse.

    • @CP:

      Actually, the Reds and Rays match-up rather well for a trade. The Reds have a surplus of what the Rays need and the Rays have a surplus of what the Reds need. Simple as that. The last two off seasons they have matched up well and I see that still as the case.
      How about a 3-way?? Longoria and Price to the Reds. Frazier, Bailey, Arredondo, Lutz, Corcino or Tavieoso, and Barnhardt (C) to the Rays. Then WJ sends Chapman, 2B HRod and OF Felix Perez to the Marlins for Giancarlo Stanton.
      Batting order: Choo, BP, Votto, Longoria, Bruce, Stanton, Cozart, Hanni/Mez.
      Starting rotation: Cueto, Price, Latos Leake, Arroyo (then Cingrani). The bench is solid and so is the bullpen. The World Series titles will roll in for the next few years.

      • @WVRedlegs: Okay,

        So the Reds send a #3 pitcher, a starting 3B, and closer/project, 1 above average prospect, and a bunch of middling prospects, and get back:

        1 ace pitcher
        1 elite third baseman
        1 elite LF.

        Do you not see see what’s wrong with this?

        • @CP: @CP:

          No no infidel. Needs and wants are what make trades. Evidently you do not value the Reds farm system very well. Lutz is the #1 power prospect in the organization. Tavieoso is a 1st round pick. Arredondo is not a closer, the Rays have the best closer in baseball, or at least the AL. They need a RH reliever though. Bailey could fit in as a #2 or #3 starter. Barnhardt is a very good C prospect, something the Rays do not have.
          Chapman would become the Marlins #1 starter. HRod is a .300 hitting young INF at AAA. Felix Perez is a .300 hitting OF at AAA. Some people think a straight up trade of Chapman for Stanton is equal. I do not though. Chapman and Perez are Cuban and HRod is Latino, so they fit in well with Miami.
          It isn’t that hard to see if you have any baseball IQ whatsoever.

      • @WVRedlegs: And what exactly there indicates the 2 teams match up well? The Rays stink on offense, but are typically great at pitching and defense.

        So in the trade you opine, you offer one position player WHO plays the same position you’re giving up but who’s production will likely will get crushed compared to Longoria’s so long as Longoria stays healthy, and a Catcher that has never played above AA.


  10. The way the Rays value pitching, Stephenson would have to be in the deal. The Rays can afford to make a centerpiece deal with a young pitcher like Stephenson because of their track record. I’d say Stephenson, Travieso, Lutz, and Hanigan gets it done- the Rays have always loved Hanigan. And if Meso has already taken over as the everyday Catcher by mid year, Hanigan would be expendable. It COULD happen, but prolly not.

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