Preface: What follows has nothing to do with Jesse Winker and Jay Bruce. I assume that Jay Bruce will be traded soonish and Jesse Winker will take his spot, effectively. This is about the other place in the outfield the Reds need to fill.

Adam Duvall has been one of the highlights in a season that barely shines at all. I’m sure that is something we can all agree on. He hits big, pretty homers and he hit them hard and all that.

And the Reds need to trade him.

And call up Jermaine Curtis to take his spot.

And here’s why:

Adam Duvall has been a force this year. There is not doubt about that. However, he is striking out more or less 30 percent of the time. And he is walking less than 4 percent of the time. And that tells you that his performance cannot last.

How do I know? It’s simple, I looked. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t trying to be pessimistic. He’d been doing well and I went and looked at his numbers and I happened to remember some article somewhere that talked about how hard it was to strike out 30 percent of the time and still be a good hitter and then I saw that really, really low walk rate and I thought, “uh oh.”

So I went to FanGraphs and sorted every individual batter season since 1900 by K% (I excluded pitcher batting for obvious reasons). 244 batters have a had a season in which they struck out at least 25 percent of the time. The only one of those players to have a walk rate within shouting distance of Duvall’s AND an above-average WAR total was Dave Kingman for the 1976 Mets, when he walked 5.5 percent of the time and struck out 26.5 percent of the time and posted 2.6 fWAR.

Let that sink in for a minute. One out of 244. And both his walk and strikeout percentages were better than Duvall’s.

He is 28 years old and having the year of his life and it cannot possibly continue (yes, his numbers were better in the minors, but not better enough to hope for real improvement). Good players don’t have seasons like he is having. Not unless they are at the tail end of their careers. Eventually, he will stop ever seeing a strike and it will all come crashing down. I know we’re all excited by him right now, but he is not going to be a longterm contributor to the Reds, which makes him a great candidate to be trade when he is hot.

In his place, I put forth that the Reds should call up Jermaine Curtis. Curtis is one year older than Duvall and also his opposite. Curtis has never had much power and never will, but he does get on base. A lot. In the minors he has gotten on base at a .381 clip that is much better than Duvall’s .338 clip down there. Curtis has only a 5 PA cup of coffee to his name, but that doesn’t mean the Reds shouldn’t see what he is. If he can get on base 35 percent of the time, he would be very helpful to the team and strikezone control (which is necessary for a high OBP) correlates with success in the majors better than any of the conventional tools.

So, while Duvall’s power seems nice and shiny, it’s not nearly as likely to make him a valuable player as Jermaine Curtis’ OBP.

Those of you who have been around long enough know that I trust logic when looking at which players are likely to be good. I suppose it’s possible that Duvall is a once-in-baseball-history talent. But I’m not betting on it, and if I were the Reds, I’d be seeing what I can get for him before he turns into a metaphorical pumpkin.

I don’t know, of course, that Curtis would work out. But I know there’s a chance he’s a decent option. And if he doesn’t work? Well, they were going to have to fill that hole when Duvall didn’t work out anyway.

122 Responses

  1. Alex

    Guessing the market return would be a rookie league 19 year old pitcher with zero control of the strike zone. Let’s keep the guy for now.

    • Jason Linden

      Maybe that’s all you’d get, but you never know. Especially is you send him to a club in win-now mode.

      • greenmtred

        That supposes that a club in win-now mode wouldn’t be aware of the information you accumulated, though, Jason.

  2. Yippee

    “He is 28 years old and having the year of his life and it cannot possibly continue (yes, his numbers were better in the minors, but not better enough to hope for real improvement).”

    Sounds like conjecture to me, could be a late bloomer…

    • Jason Linden

      Not really conjecture. It’s about the peripheral stats. He can’t have the plate approach he has and be good in the longterm. It has literally never worked in the history of baseball.

    • Jay King

      Fraizer was a pretty late bloomer. His minor league numbers were decent but not wowing. No saying Duvall’s are either but with team control of him for the next several seasons I would just hang onto him to be our number one power bench threat for the future.

  3. Yippee

    Also, who is this Curtis guy and why is he rarely/never discussed in getting an opportunity at the MLB level if he has a career .381 OBP in the minors?

    • Big56dog

      So why not Steve Selsky? has same OBP & much higher ops for career than Curtis and is a year younger than Duvall

      • Tom Diesman

        Or maybe even Tyler Holt who is already on the team and has a better OBP than all the regulars.

        AAA Age PA AVG/OBP/SLG/OPS
        Curtis 28.3 1189 .270/.379/.350/.729
        Selsky 26.3 503 .283/.374/.392/.765
        Holt 27.1 702 .304/.398/.382/.779

  4. james garrett

    I am all for trading anybody if we can get younger players with some upside back in return.

    • greenmtred

      There may be sense in this, but we all need to consider what that would do in the short-term and how disgusted/impatient we all are, judging from the comments on the recaps.

  5. IndyRedMan

    No. Just say no. Obviously when someone slams that many HRs in a month then they will start pitching around him but that’s why he needs to be batting 3rd or 4th instead of BP. If Votto got back to his old self .400+ obp and batting second then it would be hard for them to walk Duvall as well if he was batting 3rd! That’s a lot of RBI opportunities for Bruce and Suarez! I like Curtis as well….trade Cozart and then tell BP he’s no longer a full-time starter. Rotate some playing time between Curtis, Suarez, BP, and Peraza in the infield and Peraza can play some OF too. Duvall can play 3B/1B as well…..take a cue from Joe Maddon!

    • Jason Linden

      If Duvall could take a walk, I wouldn’t be lobbying to trade him. The problem is he doesn’t walk and soon pitchers are going to start exploiting that.

  6. IndyRedMan

    Good writer…good blog and I enjoy it! I’m sure you’re a swell guy too but you didn’t do your homework on this one! 2 examples that bust your theory on 1 team!

    Edwin Scissorhands = Age 28….17 HRs and .787 ops
    Age 29…..42 HRs and .941 ops

    Jose Bautista = Age 28……hit .235 with 13 HRs
    Obviously exploded after that! It happens….confidence mixed in with some talent is a powerful thing in sports or life in general!

    He could easily bust but we can’t make the same mistake SF made!

    • Jason Linden

      Go look at the K and BB% of those two. Totally different from what Duvall is doing. They aren’t comparable players.

    • Big56dog

      Indy I think the point is not that guys do not bloom later at Duvall’s age but that guys do not have sustainable success that Strikeout at his magnitude. The low walk rate is troubling, but its the k’s -25% is horrible and Duvall is striking out 30% and not walking.
      Edwin Scissorhands = Age 28 he was till at a far superior obp plus he was 6 full years in the majors. Duvall has had a great month.

  7. Chuck Schick

    My guess is that every team in baseball has internet access, so they can derive the same information. if Duvall isn’t worth anything then why trade him?

    • Jason Linden

      This is a fair point, but it’s worth at least exploring the market. And the Reds definitely shouldn’t commit to Duvall longterm.

      • mdhabel

        if nothing else, he has made himself a very appealing throw-in piece if we can find suitors for Bruce/Cozart/Phillips and want to get a slightly better prospect

      • Jay King

        They don’t need to the guy has barely any service time so far. He is not even arbitration eligible for a couple years yet.

    • big5ed

      I agree. Other teams can assess this as well, so if Jason is right, then Duvall has no value. He has only played 46 games this year and has 155 ABs, so we are still in small sample size mode; his minor league BB rate isn’t really as hopeless as Jason suggests.

      Both baseball-reference.com and espn have the Reds as having the toughest strength of schedule so far, which is consistent with my subjective observation that the Reds have faced a long parade of tough pitchers. Plus, face it, the Reds are almost always losing, so no pitcher is going to nibble at Adam Duvall; he instead is going to throw strikes to Adam Duvall.

      While I agree he is unlikely to continue leading the league in home runs every month, I don’t see any down side to keeping him.

    • PDunc

      Not an apples-to-apples comparison, but after the 2014 season many people were saying that Alfredo Simon wasn’t likely to keep up his production based on his peripheral stats. The Tigers had internet access and should have been able to come to that same conclusion, but instead traded Suarez for him.

      Jocketty isn’t the only GM in the league that maybe favors “old school” stats a little too much and would fall for Duvall’s power.

      A player with his power, and ability to back up the corner infield and left field spots has some value so if the Reds can’t find a decent return then don’t give him away. If another team is willing to give back something of value for Duvall though, definitely make the trade.

  8. Chad

    While my emotional side agrees with the comments so far, my logical side predicts Jason’s prophecy about Duvall’s performance will absolutely become a reality. It’s a pretty easy for for pitchers to simply stop throwing him strikes (although I’m surprised they haven’t done that by now), and there is no reason to believe he can adjust and suddenly become a patient hitter. I don’t know what the stats are he’d have to be a phenomenal bad-ball hitter to survive that pitcher’s adjustment. As Alex points out, if you can’t get a decent return then it makes no sense to trade him, however. If they get a decent return then it absolutely makes sense.

    • Jason Linden

      Because I was curious, I just went to look at Vladimir Guerrero’s stats since he’s the best bad ball hitter I’ve ever seen. For his career, he waled 8.1% of the time and struck out 10.9% of the time.

      • lwblogger2

        Vlad’s strikeout rate is what has always blown me away. For a power hitter, he just didn’t swing and miss that much… He swung at a lot of bad pitches but he hit a lot of bad pitches. His walk rate also wasn’t as low as many would have thought. He swung at a lot of bad pitches but he took a decent number of them too.

    • Scott E. Disney

      So what you’re saying is that our bullpen guys who NEVER throw strikes might be in some demand? I bet GMs are already knocking our door down as we speak! 🙂

  9. IndyRedMan

    Ok Mark Trumbo then

    686 Ks and only 180 walks coming into this year. His highest OPS ever was .808

    Now you put him in little Camden Park with some meat in the lineup around him and he’s a monster! Duvall has a fairly compact swing. I’m not saying he’s good for 40+ HRs annually or anything but give the guy a chance to adjust now that we know the pitchers are going to adjust!

  10. IndyRedMan

    Also didn’t one of you stat guru’s say not long ago that Duvall is one of the best defensive LF’ers in baseball?

    • Yippee

      Ahh, but you’re forgetting, he’s an ancient 28 years old.

    • Doug Gray

      If someone were truly a “stats guru” they would have never said those things because they would know that the defensive stats that suggest that aren’t close to being reliable in the sample size that we have on Adam Duvall.

      But yeah – Duvall has to walk more or strike out significantly less if he’s going to continue to be a productive hitter.

      • IndyRedMan

        He has less than 300 career atbats so this whole article isn’t reliable

    • Patrick Jeter

      “You stat gurus…”

      You say that like it’s a put-down.

      • IndyRedMan

        No…just teasing. I’m in sales so I crunch numbers for a living although I don’t crunch’em like some of you guys! I’m old and have some Marty in me!

    • Patrick Jeter

      I’m pretty sure I’m the one who brought that up, but as Doug says below, any defensive metrics come with heavy caveats given sample size, etc.

      The gist of the post I made (IIRC) was that Duvall CURRENTLY was at the top of the leaderboards among “FanGraphs Def” for LFers. Which is a different statement than “he IS one of the best defensive LFers in baseball.”

      He very well might be, though, as LF isn’t typically a bastion of defense.

      • preacherj

        Any defensive metrics should come with the caveat they are defensive metrics

    • Carl Sayre

      My thought on being the best defensive LF’er in baseball is like saying the fat girl has a pretty face. I love defense that is well played regardless of the position but LF has always been where you hide a stick that doesn’t know what a glove is for. Simply being among the best defensive LF’ers isn’t saying much. Duvall has been a very pleasant surprise but this team is rebuilding so anytime you can trade up you must. I would be alright if they don’t trade him for lack of interest he is a bargain for what he cost. A power hitter who strikes out a lot still has some value in todays game unfortunately we can’t trade him to the Reds.

  11. Randy fuqua

    Im so tired of seeing the reds get good talent and trading them ive been a reds fan since the early 70s in my opinion first off homer bailey is wayyyyy over paid has never produced other than his 2 no hitters todd frazier said i want to retire a red he loved cincy as does Brandon and Jay and Joey since todd got traded in the middle of renegotiating s contract to keep him here jay has been on the block several times im sure he will be traded by all star break Brandon said no to the national’s and joey has a no trade clause also where is the commitment from the reds to build a championship caliber team having trouble seeing it cause everyone that produces is gone i feel sorry for brian price who has never had a good team to work with

    • Chuck Schick

      Your comment about Bailey makes no sense. It is unfortunate that he’s been hurt, but his contract was in line with similar players at the time.

      Frazier was traded because he isn’t worth what would be required to keep him here long term and he’s old relative to his service time. The fact that there was a limited market for him….even with 2 years of team control…tells you all you need to know.

      Your complaining that the Reds haven’t tried to build a championship caliber team by citing players who they re-signed to large contracts in order to try to build a championship caliber team. You’re using circular logic on yourself.

      You should investigate what it means for a team to re-build. I believe it would help you better understand things. In a nutshell, teams trade players of value for additional players who they believe will have greater future value. It’s not new….been going on for several decades.

    • Patrick Jeter

      Frazier wasn’t going to take a reasonable contract from the Reds. He most certainly did not want to retire a Red. If he did, he would have stayed for whatever the Reds would have paid him.

    • Jay King

      throwing out the injury I too feel Bailey was overpaid some. Yes he had the 2 no hitters awesome!!! Overall he always felt like a number 2 or even a number 3 pitcher in a rotation. He consistency was very poor. I would have liked to have seen Bailey signed for around 85 to 90 million for his current deal 95 million tops.

      I don’t know that Todd would have taken a hometown discount to stay. I know he liked it in Cincy but he knew he could make good money in another city.

  12. ohiojimw

    A college basketball team I once followed had a coach that wouldn’t spend a scholarship on a three point shot specialist. Even as his team of supposedly superior athletes kept being beaten by treys they couldn’t quite reign in and throwing up brick after brick of their own from behind the arc, he stuck to his guns that it was poor philosophy and strategy to spend a scholarship on a guy who didn’t meet his all around profile. I see a lot of the same fuzzy logic in this post.

    • CP

      That guy must be pretty perplexed by the Golden State Warriors.

    • ohiojimw

      Sorry, I don’t follow the NBA at all aside from being vaguely aware that GS is defending champ and back in finals again (can’t avoid that much knowledge because of Cavs coverage in my area)

  13. CP

    I have a few issues with this article, despite being generally okay with the premise: Reds should trade players where it makes sense to trade them. If Duvall (2016) gets Player X who aligns with their rebuild in 2019, go for it.

    One, there is an underlying assumption here that other teams are stupid. Unless you are able to somehow fleece a team, I don’t understand what Jason thinks Duvall will fetch back. Even if you think he isn’t a starter caliber player capable of 2+ WAR/season, that Reds have had a terrible bench for years now. Duvall can play multiple positions, has a good bat, and is cheap. Unless a team blows you away, keep him around to eat the ABs that guys like Wilson Valdez and Skip Schumaker have had in years past.

    Two, and this is also just a general observation I’ve had of my fellow stat-oriented fans, that there is way too much extrapolation of short term data being done by guys wearing their sabermetric hats. Duvall neither struck out this much during the minors, nor walk this little. Just like I don’t expect his power surge to continue at the present rate, I don’t expect the other numbers to remain static either.

    • lwblogger2

      All good points. His MiLB walk rate wasn’t great but it wasn’t under 4% either. I don’t think we should expect it to be in MLB either. That said, I don’t see him getting it much up over 5-6%… The strikeouts may be real or close to real but will they end up over 25%? He’s had just over 300 MLB plate appearances. Hard to say what kind of hitter he is. As you said, if the Reds see Player X and that player aligns with the rebuild then do it but if not, I think you have at least a good bench player who provides some pop off the bench. You have him cost controlled too.

    • Jay King

      And don’t forget Duvall is cheap for the next 3 seasons or so cost wise.

    • Carl Sayre

      I think that Duvall is going to be a sweetener to get multiple players from a team or that one quality player in the Bruce trade!

  14. Patrick Jeter

    As many have said, I don’t disagree with the premise. If you can trade Duvall for some sort of return, might as well do it. After all, it’s unlikely Duvall at 30+ is going to be a mainstay for the Reds.

    However, the reasoning seems to be something like “Duvall can’t continue to be a 137 wRC+ hitter going forward because of his K-BB spread.” Agreed.

    However, the main underlying peripheral that has garnered Duvall the 137 wRC+ is his HR/FB%, which currently sits at 26.0%, which is in the top 7 in baseball. Logic would dictate that if he can continue to have roughly 1 in 4 fly balls leave the yard from this point forward, we’d expect a similar total offensive output.

    So, can he sustain a 26.0% HR/FB rate? Unlikely. The only guys in that area over longer periods of time are Giancarlo Stanton and Chris Davis. Duvall, even though he seems quite powerful, doesn’t have their 80 grade game power. Probably more like 70.

    So, with that said, it seems to me like it’s reasonable to expect Duvall to be something like a 110 wRC+ hitter going forward, at least for the next year or two in his 20s.

    So, if you think his current defensive numbers are a farce, you’re right, you’re staring at a 0.5-1.0 WAR player as a LFer hitting a 110 wRC+.

    However, if you think he actually IS a decent LFer who can save many runs a year on defense, he’s more like a 1.5-2.0 WAR player, which isn’t really that bad of an asset if it’s cheap.

    Regardless, I think this is precisely the type of thing the Reds FO should consider. If they are serious about competing, they can’t get locked in because a guy had a super hot May.

  15. Daytonian

    Silly you! Power is correlated with runs. We will not get power back. Duvall is still young enough to be productive for 6 years.

    Power counts. And we do not have enough.

  16. enfuego

    Its an interesting question. It all depends on what the reds could get back given everyone else looks at the same data and most other teams put more value on walk rate and OBP than the reds.

    I would like to see Curtis get a run though. He has had a nice year in Louisville. I am also biased a little by seeing him play in Norfolk this spring where he interacted so well with the fans and really seemed to be making an effort to do so even on the road.

  17. hof13

    I generally agree that Duvall isn’t going to continue this level of productivity long term and likely won’t be the best solution for LF for the Reds but I think he could be a productive bench player. He is not a defensive liability and obviously has a lot of pop in his bat when he connects. If you believe the Reds value a high OBP guy over the power numbers of Duvall, then why not bring someone else up and make him part of the bench. I believe that will yield better overall value than what the Reds would get in a trade. Of course, if you don’t believe the Reds value a high OBP guy, they they aren’t likely to trade him anyway.

    Question: Does the fact that power are generally down compared to past decades make Duvall’s WAR higher compared to someone with the same stats that played 20 years ago?

    • ohiojimw

      Duvall is Chris Heisey doing for the last month what Heisey never quite managed to do with the Reds. He will come back to earth; but, even when he does he will still be a mistake hitter with value for a team that knows how spot him. That spot is where he will see less not quite premium stuff, i.e. against back of the rotation starters and most relievers not pitching in the 9th inning,

      If i am the Reds I keep him until/ unless he will bring somebody to fill that spot or better.

      • Scott E. Disney

        I believe even if Duvall fell back to Earth and became a spitting image of Chris Heisey but continued to field well and was more like Heisey’s early career than later – I could see Duvall providing enough value to be at least a decent bat off the bench. It all comes down to how much he costs and right now he’s cheap. Maybe trade him once he becomes expensive? And there is always that remote chance that he is a late bloomer and his K/BB is just small sample size. Certainly an interesting topic, no doubt about it.

  18. Jack

    How do you know Winker is going to do anything in the bigs? You all seem to have the answers and that Winker and Peraza are the saviors. How do you know? There is a reason you all aren’t GMs.

    • Patrick Jeter

      Do the GMs know? They don’t either. So by your logic they shouldn’t be GMs either?

    • Chuck Schick

      Winkler and Peraza are fine prospects. No one “knows” anything. They might be good, they might suck. There are also reasons that you’re not a GM.

  19. Patrick Jeter

    Also, regarding Curtis… his career AAA slash line is .270/.379/.350.

    If you assume a generous 10% decline due to the increased difficulty of MLB pitching, his line looks like .243/.341/.315.

    A guy with a a mid .600s OPS isn’t anything to get excited about, folks.

    • Tom Diesman

      And yet that slash line would make him the Reds best lead off hitter since Shin-Soo Choo. That would be kind of exciting. Not that a guy like that would get to bat lead off since Billy Hamilton runs real fast and might figure out how to hit someday, but it would have some useful value.

    • Shchi Cossack

      There are a lot of career minor league players who excel at some facet(s) of the game, but their minor league success never translates to success at the major league level or at least repeatable or continued success at the major league level. Before we get too excited about Jermaine Curtis, let’s take a deep breath.

      Jermaine Curtis (age 29 season):
      .275/.381/.354 => career minor league slash in 2954 PA over 9 seasons
      .270/.379/.350 => career AAA slash in 1189 PA over 3 seasons

      Tyler Holt (age 27 season):
      .274/.367/.351 => career minor league slash in 2682 PA over 6 seasons
      .304/.398/.382 => career AAA slash in 702 PA over 2 seasons
      .279/.348/.344 => 2016 MLB slash in 70 PA

      Before we start clamoring for Curtis to get playing time at the major league level, I want to see Holt with regular, extended playing time. Hamilton has recently shown some improved results at the plate, slashing .283/.317/.367 in his last (cherry picked) 64 PA. I hope Hamilton is finally ‘getting it’, but the jury is still out until he proves similar results over a much larger sample size.

      Right now, the Reds have an excellent opportunity to answer these questions. Send Phillips to the DL immediately, irrespective of his claims that he is healthy enough to play and contribute effectively. Move Suarez over to 2B & Duvall to 3B, play Holt in LF & Hamilton in CF and call up Curtis to be the 1st substitution in the OF (Holt can move to CF when Hamilton sits & Curtis directly replaces Holt in LF when Holt sits), the 1st substitution at 3B when Duvall sits & the 1st substitution at 2B when Suarez sits. This would also be a great time to DFA Pacheco just because he should be DFA’d. Go with this for the next 3-4 weeks and see how things shake out. I don’t care how shaky the defense is during that 3-4 weeks. This is about identifying options for the future.

      • Shchi Cossack

        Oh, and if they would DFA Pacheco, bring up Selsky and give him a good long look in a PH/utility OF role.

      • lwblogger2

        Wish they would DFA Pacheco but they won’t.

      • greenmtred

        Seems like sound reasoning to me.

      • Jay King

        Watching Holt on the bases in Milwaukee was enjoyable. He really was bugging the Brew Crew when he was on base.

  20. IndyRedMan

    Bottom line…..the guy doesn’t screw around hitting singles so factor that into your isolated power XYZ and GABP is made to order for him! Less than 300 career atbats so lets just see what happens?

    Now if they can get someone useful for Straily then I’m all for it!

  21. Scott E. Disney

    At this point, see if he raises his walks any before the Deadline and if he has not then the trade talks can really heat up. Of course we could trade him in offseason with possibly a better idea of what we have in future OFers but probably too late by then and stock would already drop?

  22. sezwhom

    The one shining light in a dismal season who has finally, for now, solved our LF debacle and you want to trade him then bring up a guy in the minors who is one year older? No thanks. We have bigger issues to tackle before even thinking about trading Duvall.

    • Jason Linden

      Key words there: For now. Remember, this year is a lost cause. It’s all about next year.

      • Jay King

        Your in a dream land if you think the Reds are going to be better next season. I don’t expect us to be decent again until 2018 or more likely 2019.

  23. Jason Linden

    A couple of general responses since I was offline for a bit:

    Regarding Duvall’s minor league stats: Once he moved about A-ball, his walk rate started to drop and his K-rate started to go up. It is reasonable to expect this would continue in a move to the majors and it has. He may end up walking a little more and striking out a little less, but to be a good option longterm, he would really need to improve a lot. Especially the walk rate.

    Regarding his power: I have to no doubt that it’s legit, but as noted, I also assume he’s going to stop seeing any strikes at all soon, which is going to make homers harder to come by.

    Regarding what the Reds can get for him: I do not know. If I’m being honest, I’m afraid the Reds are going to commit to him (because they’ve done this kind of thing before) and it’s going to bite them in the rear. So I’d rather not have him on the team. What I’m the most afraid of is that he magically holds it together for a whole year and then everybody thinks he’s legit and then it falls apart next year. I’d prefer we all acknowledge now how unlikely Duvall is to be a longterm contributor.

    Regarding Selsky: Whoever brought him up has a good point. He does strike out more than Curtis but he’s worth a look.

    In general: Remember OBP correlates with scoring better than ISO (or whatever your preferred measure of power is). Other than Votto, the Reds have been OBP poor for years and the organization needs to make an adjustment eventually.

    Sorry for the super-long comment. Just trying to catch up.

    • Matt WI

      Yeah, I think I wanted to say that if they aren’t going to entertain trading him, that’s fine, but just don’t go offering any commitment either. Let’s keep dating.

      • mdhabel

        lets just hope the Reds are the ones who get too attached and cant break up when they need to

      • preacherj

        Thats my thought as well. Just because you dont shop him hard at the all star break doesnt mean you have to sign him to a six year deal.

        When your bb/k rates are on the wrong side of Dave Kingmans….eeek.

        But a good fielder with some power in left field, whos very cheap, aint a bad thing right now.

        He may not be a long term solution, but a guy like this would be a perfect spot starter and bench player for a competing team. Maybe give him a good look now and try to keep him around for that role next year or so.

    • big5ed

      Why on earth would the Reds”commit to” a 28 -year-old who won’t be arbitration eligible until at least after 2017, and not eligible for free agency until he is about 33? How dumb do you think they are up there?

      You could have saved a lot of analysis and verbiage by simply saying, “I think the Reds’ front office is historically stupid, incapable even of reciting the alphabet.”

      They aren’t going to “commit to” Adam Duvall. They may pay him about $800,000 next year, if he has a plausible remainder of this this season, but they will not do anything long-term. If he gets better with his walk rate, then fine. If he regresses as you suggest, then they will replace him.

      I just don’t see any economic sense in trading him now. They would replace him with another guy, like Curtis, who makes the same amount of money. For now, I’ll take the power over a few more walks, especially since all a walk would accomplish on this team for now is to bring to the plate another cruddy hitter.

      • Scott E. Disney

        By the time Duvall hits free agency he will be old enough that he’s not worth keeping. If the Reds just ride out his pre-Arb and Arbitration years, we won’t need him in his mid 30’s. The Reds certainly SHOULD NOT extend Duvall. There’s simply no need whatsoever.

    • CP

      Yeah, but the walk rate doesn’t have to move up much to completely blow up the “oooooohhhh” section of your article. It should also naturally increase when pitches stop throwing him strikes (even if hurts elsewhere, as you mentioned).

      I don’t really view him as a long term starter so I don’t have a problem with that. If other teams do view him as one and want to provide starting LF value for him, cool. I just don’t see the urgency. I’m happy with a better fielding Mark Trumbo-ish on my bench, but if some other team values him like Trumbo, I’m cool with trading him too.

      I don’t share the worry that the Reds will commit anything to him. He isn’t arb eligible until 2019, and won’t be a FA until he is 33 years old. Even this organization can’t screw that up.

    • Patrick Jeter

      Good reply here, Jason.

      Just one note…. team SLG correlates higher than team OBP for scoring, and has since the beginning of the live ball era, I believe. They are very close, though.

      • Shchi Cossack

        Well there you go again Patrick…

        The Old Cossack has been holding a post, correlating team production stats with team runs scored, for what felt to be the right timing and the discussion of Duvall’s efficacy seemed like the proper lead in to that post. I was surprised with the very high positive SLG correlation when I started to look at the various team stats.

      • Patrick Jeter

        I look forward to that post!! 😉

      • Jay King

        We also have a possible strikezone change coming next season too. Might actually help Duvall.

    • Streamer88

      The OBP correlation is stronger, true. But that doesn’t mean ISO doesn’t correlate. A line up full of low OBP and high ISO players would still generate a lot of runs though. And if you can obtain more wins by focusing on ISO because it can be purchased cheaper then you do it because its efficient. OBP is all the rage these days and rightfully so. But that rage makes it costly.

  24. reaganspad

    His glove has not disappointed, he is not making errors or throwing to the wrong base. He is hot and they tried to pitch around the scouting report on him and pitched him away. He took one out to Right Center and the second one was a taser to RF.

    He has hit ground balls in RBI situations to score runs. All this while being a rookie and learning all the pitchers.

    I agree with CP above that Duvall looks like a great bench player and we have not had one like him since super Todd. His strength looks like super Todd also.

    Now if we trade him, we will go back to having no left fielder. I think any trade of Reds players in the future should stand the Cueto/Chapman test.

    If we get what we got for Cueto, trade him.

    If we get what we got for Chapman, keep him.

    thats it, my simple new standard

  25. IndyRedMan

    Ok Jason….I brought out the big gun! My fav player of all of them from the Big Red Machine days…George Foster. Of course he also came from the Giants.

    1971 = 29 walks, 120 Ks
    1972 = 23 walks 93 Ks

    Now granted he was 21-22 years old at the time but whether you’re 21 or 28 when you start getting regular playing time…you still have to get used to big league pitching!

    If we can’t dream big on some of these projections for some of these guys then the Reds situation can look pretty hopeless?

    • Jason Linden

      Man, that is a big ol’ stretch and you know it. Duvall is at the age when players start to decline. Also, Foster, even in limited time, had a much better track record in the minors than Duvall. I mean, that’d be cool, but betting on Duvall is essentially betting that he’s close to a unique player in MLB history. You don’t field a winning team making bets like that.

      • IndyRedMan

        He won’t be George Foster but he might end up as a better player than the Toddfather? I like his swing much much better! Its much more compact w/less things to go wrong! Beauty is in the eye of the beholder I guess? For instance I see 80% of the people on here rave about Stephenson but I’ve seen once in Indy w/the Bats and twice w/the Reds this year and I don’t see a #1? He’s not a Thor w/the Mets or Garrit Cole type of talent from what I’ve seen? I see another Homer hype train where they said he was throwing 99 in the minors but all I ever saw was 93-94? Doesn’t mean he can’t be a great pitcher but its all about projections.

      • Jason Linden

        I agree with you on Stephenson for whatever that’s worth. He looks like a #3 to me. Reed is legit, though. I think.

        I would be dumbstruck if Duvall ended up better than Frazier. A pretty swing is nice, but results matter more.

      • IndyRedMan

        Prepare to be dumbstruck then…lol. Of course I thought Suarez might be the next Julio Franco after last year but now he’s trying to lift/drive everything at the expense of average so he’s a completely different hitter?

      • Jason Linden

        I still believe in Suarez. Something is off right now, but I think he’ll get it figured out.

      • greenmtred

        Bailey, lately, has frequently been faster than 93 or 94 (eye test and memory). Speed matters, everything else being equal. But everything else rarely is. I again cite King Felix. I don’t know how fast he can throw now, but during the part of that game I watched, he wasn’t hitting 95, and he was still effective.

  26. WVRedlegs

    Ironically, the Reds could trade Duvall back to the power starved, and NL West division leading, SF Giants. Posey and Pence lead the team with 7 HR’s each. They would probably play him more at 3B, though. OF Mac Williamson might be a good return. He is 6’5″ 240 lbs, 25 years old with a cannon arm. RHP Ray Black, if he could throw strikes, might be another.

    • Jason Linden

      Soon, I might muster the energy to see what kind of returns trades bring for selling teams now that 10 teams make the playoffs. There are so few sellers that the asking price should go up. At least theoretically.

  27. reaganspad

    How do you factor in IBB’s into this scenario? I know that I would not be throwing to Duvall in May of 2016 (or today) in Coors.

    So if he gets 9 IBBs in the next 3 games, is he somehow more valuable?

    those balls going out to RF and RC yesterday into the wind were something. I do not know what the gusts were like at the exact moments of their ABs, but remember that Joey had one kept in the park in CF during his classic, game on the line ab

    • Jason Linden

      Of course he is. But I wouldn’t be intentionally walking him until he proves that he won’t swing at pitches outside the strikezone.

  28. james garrett

    As it does with everybody else not named Votto it comes down to is he part of the future?I personally like him regardless of his lack of walks.He is not alone because nobody else does either but I will stick with what I said earlier and that is if you get some younger players with some upside you trade him and if not then you keep him.He could be worse then Dave Kingman but if he hits it then it goes a long way.

  29. cfd3000

    Jason it’s an interesting option, especially if you think the Reds future outfield includes Hamilton, Winker, Holt, and maybe even Bruce (I’m not convinced he gets traded though it’s certainly reasonable to think he will). But I can’t help wondering what adjustments Duvall makes if (when) opposing pitchers stop giving him so many strikes. If he continues to K and doesn’t walk more, and his home runs drop because there’s nothing to hit then there’s your answer. But if he adjusts and walks more I see real value, either as a Red or in a trade. No harm in seeing what’s out there in return, especially as long as the Reds don’t extend him. Bottom line it’s uncertain and perhaps unlikely that Duvall is a major contributor in two years so why not shop him but as with so many possible trades there’s no reason to move him just to get rid of him. No value in return = no trade. It will be interesting to see what the Reds decide…

    • Jason Linden

      I’d encourage you to read the article I linked and other things on plate discipline. It’s not unheard of for guys to change their approach dramatically in the majors, but it’s pretty rare. Baseball, we forget sometimes, is really hard and usually, once a guy gets to Duvall’s age, what you see is usually what you get.

      • Patrick Jeter

        This. Guys get the majors doing things “their way” and are generally too afraid of screwing something up to change drastically. At least that’s how it seems to me!

      • lwblogger2

        It’s that it’s always worked for them and also that after years of doing things a certain way, it is incredibly hard to make drastic changes. Mechanical chances are actually easier to implement than changes to mindset or approach. It also comes down to how well a player identifies a pitch. I knew the strikezone but often couldn’t tell that a pitch wasn’t (or sometimes was) going to be in it. I knew what pitches I shouldn’t swing at but couldn’t identify them well enough to not swing at them. I’d end up striking out and shaking my head saying “why did you swing at that Lar??!!?” … And that was in independent semi-pro ball, not even MiLB, let alone MLB.

  30. Phil Gasson

    I hope Mosvot didn’t unpack. 1/inning…..
    ……5/runs.

    • lwblogger2

      Gotta give him another chance. First start coming back and at Coor’s Field.

      • Patrick Jeter

        Yeah. Ball doesn’t move well at Coors. I bet he wasn’t expecting it and left a bunch of pitches where they shouldn’t have been.

        It would be an interesting stat to see the composite pitching line of every pitcher who has ever pitched at Coors in their first outing. I bet the ERA I enormous.

  31. Dan

    “And he is walking less than 4 percent of the time. And that tells you that his performance cannot last.”
    So what you are really saying is that there is zero chance that he can improve long term even if playing at the major league level and that we should sell while the iron is hot. This blog refuses to give up on players such as Joey Votto and Jay Bruce as they struggle being veterans and yet the same benefit of doubt is not ever given over to rookies. In the game thread for today is a great example of that. Many passages are saying that Jon Moscot is not worthy of a rotation slot due to todays performance. I guess rookies really aren’t even given a full year to give out a quality sample size. 2 months and we already know the future of our veterans and of our rookies. Great insight.

    • Patrick Jeter

      You’d give up on one of the 30 best hitters in history after a slightly-below league average 2 months?

    • lwblogger2

      Completely different players with completely different track records. Votto has been exceptional with the exception of this season. Even his injured and return year had him as a well above average hitter. Bruce was a 3-time Silver Slugger. He had two terrible seasons in a row however and the Reds tried to move him. I’m a Bruce fan and would have hated to see him go and I didn’t want to give up on him (but again I’m biased) but most commenters were done with him. He’s having a decent season this year and although I’d hate to see him go, I can see why trading him makes sense.

      I agree with you on Moscot. I’m not ready to pronounce he isn’t going to be a good pitcher. I am not exactly sold on him either but in this lost season, you gotta keep running him out there as long as he’s healthy and see what he’s got. Duvall isn’t exactly a young player though and although I’m not sure the Reds should trade him I’m also not convinced that what we’re seeing from him so far is the real Duvall. That said, again, in this lost season, if the return for him isn’t something that would most certainly help in 2019+, then I say hang onto him and see what they have.

      • ohiojimw

        I thought Wright’s appearance Tuesday was at least less than a disaster considering the venue. He actually gave them 3 decent innings then seemed to lose it all at once.

        When guys come back from injury or are called up, it will be interesting to see if Wright sticks with the Reds out of the pen or returns to AAA as a starter.

        In a year or two when everything has shaken out, i would not be surprised to see someone like Wright or Moscot in the #5 starting slot for the Reds with a couple of guys who now project ahead of them having been traded to bring in position talent.

  32. Rusty

    what could reds realistically get in return for duvall? To be completey honest the Votto deal is what has strapped the Reds its too bad they made that call being a small market club

    • dan

      +1. Now we get to pay him what 20 million in his useless years. right about now Selsky could outhit him.

      • Patrick Jeter

        You seem so sure about judging a guy for 2 months of play during which he’s experienced the worst batted ball variability of his career.

        If you would really prefer Steve Selsky over Joey Votto, I’m not sure why you are a baseball fan, to be perfectly frank.

      • Patrick Jeter

        Hah! 😉

        Yeah, I just don’t understand why people can’t just appreciate Votto for what he is. Some of the older fans will likely never see a better Reds hitter in their lifetime. Hell, I may not either…

      • Dan

        I’m not a Votto van I admit it. Sorry. He is a .200 hitter at this point. I consider him an Albatross around the Reds neck. Even he ever contributes as he has in the past I don’t see his salary as sane for a small market team, especially considering the fact that Votto is pitched around moreso than any other batter in baseball. Votto isn’t pitched around because pitchers fear him, rather, they know that what is waiting for them behind Votto is even worse and they would stand a good chance on defense to pick up a double play. I would much rather see a complete player such as a Mike Trout or a Bryce Harper out there. That is a complete player and probably the only ones today that would be considered worthy of the kind of money that Votto is making.
        It is nothing personal against Votto don’t get me wrong. He seems like a nice guy, however, I just see him as costing this team more than they can afford.

      • Patrick Jeter

        I think you just don’t understand baseball economics nowadays. The game is so flush with money. Bryce Harper will make more than double what Votto’s contract is. That’s over $450 million.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Votto produced 7 WAR last year (includes offense, defense, base running). Teams paid $7.5 million for each WAR in the free agent market before 2015. That means Votto produced more than $50 million in value. He was paid $14 million last year. Were you a fan of Votto last year when he was producing three times the value of his salary?

        Do you base whether you are a fan of a player on his batting average over a two-month period? That seems a little unusual.

        The Reds will be spending $150 million on payroll in a few years, whether you consider that small market or not. Votto’s salary will be a smaller percentage of the overall salary than was Aaron Harang or Barry Larkin. “I’d rather see Bryce Harper or Mike Trout” is saying you’d rather see one of the two best players in baseball. To say Votto isn’t one of the two best players in baseball therefore you aren’t a fan of his is pretty severe.

  33. David

    You’re spot on with regard to his plate discipline. It leads to an OBP profile screams prototypical Reds hitter (excluding Joey…usually). His floor and ceiling are both low, IMHO.

  34. tralfaz

    In 1997 when also in rebuild mode the Reds traded for Jon Nunally who in 65 games hit 13 home runs, batted .318 and was touted as a key piece of the future. Three years, two more teams, and 136 games later he was out of baseball. Is Duvall another Nunally? I think that more likely than not he is. The Giants haven’t won 3 world series in the last five years by not recognizing talent. If the Reds can get something out of him they have to consider it. As the article points out, he’ll be in his early thirties before the Reds are competitive again.

  35. Steve Schoenbaechler

    This doesn’t happen unless we have a plan B in place. Adam is too cheap right now and doing well enough. He’s very serviceable in LF. But, many players are. But, we don’t have many that are. Until we have a “plan B” for LF, Adam is the man.