Todd Frazier

Todd Frazier takes a shot at Reds management

Todd Frazier conducted a lengthy interview with Jon Greenberg of The Athletic. It’s mostly about his time in Chicago and thoughts about his 2016 season. When the topic switched to the future, Frazier took an unsolicited, direct swipe at the Reds front office:

“I would love to stay here,” he said. “It’s a great club, great ownership. It was very different in Cincinnati, it wasn’t good. The bottom line here is these guys know what they’re doing. I see the guys [Hahn, White Sox GM] gets, he’s not afraid to pull the trigger. You’ve got to have a guy like that. Whether it turns out to be for the best or not, you take a chance sometimes, and I think he’s done that a lot. It’s up to Jerry and Rick and their team to figure out what they want to do and it’s up to them.” (emphasis added)

It’s not 100% clear what Frazier is referring to. Maybe he’s just saying the Reds team isn’t good. But he seems to be saying that Reds ownership and/or front office doesn’t stack up.

91 thoughts on “Todd Frazier takes a shot at Reds management

  1. Could be nothing more than laying groundwork for polite negotiations with respect to any upcoming/ongoing contract negotiations. He’s likely to get only one big FA deal in his career and he’s trying to maximize that opportunity.

    • Not sure I follow. Why would criticizing the Reds front office lay the groundwork for future contract negotiations?

      • I speaking more to the compliments he made to the White Sox FO, which is the other 95% of the quote. Could be his comments regarding Reds FO (specifically ownership in his words) was more about the fact he was traded at all than anything else.

        I know your not a fan of walts, but sometimes it seems like you go out of your way to find a way to be critical of him. Perhaps not here since the comment about ‘ownership’ is in Frazier’s quote but this is a teapot tempest.

        • I think that’s a stretch on two counts. For starters, this article is pretty black and white, and whether Steve likes Walt or not, it’s very news worthy. Certainly no less or no more than were Latos’ comments after he was gone. Secondly, you don’t lay ground work for negotiations by bashing the team you previously played for. Walt’s been in the league a long time, and may even have a friendship with the White Sox executives, as well too, Castellini may have friendships with them. Bashing any organization doesn’t bode well for contract negotiations.

        • Perhaps it is a stretch on both parts chris. We all have pet peeves!

          I still dont think its that big of a story. It gets people hot and bothered for a few days and later it’ll fade to nothing. I have a hard time even recalling what Latos said, when he said, who it was about, etc. but my memory could just be faulty.

  2. Perhaps the rumors of failed negotiations between the Reds and Frazier on a long term deal were accurate; and, Frazier feels there was too much dithering and indecision on the Reds part.
    Or maybe TF knows there were trade talks with other orgs, quite possibly with the guys in NYC who wear pinstripes, and; he lost the chance to play for essentially his hometown team because the Reds couldn’t or wouldn’t “pull the trigger” there.

    • I heard that Frazier proposed several deals to Jocketty to try and stay in Cincinnati, but Jocketty wasn’t having any of it. If this is true, then it sounds as if maybe Jocketty was a little bit of butthole to Todd. That would also explain Todd’s “anger” with the Reds FO. Doesn’t excuse his remarks though (little disappointed in Todd for this) but it’s understandable. Doesn’t really excuse Jocketty either in my book IF I’m right about Jocketty maybe being a little bit of a butthole to Todd.

      • Are you 10 years old? If someone makes me an offer that I don’t want to accept, it doesn’t make me a “butthole”.

      • I am unsure why you would direct your disappointment at Frazier if he was in fact taking a “shot” at the Reds FO. I am speculating I have no “facts” just a feeling how this went down. I am thinking there was “A Gentlemans agreement” about Fraziers future with the Reds and this trade was joketty reneging!. I will say for clarity I don’t like WJ and I think that he lies every time he opens his mouth. There is an argument for what side of the joke you stand on as far as what he has done. I will say that when you are billed as the second coming and the best thing that he has been able to get done is LEAVING! That makes him a no doubt FAILURE.

      • I recall some relative of TF’s (sister, maybe) gloating about how much money TF expected from his next contract. Nothing wrong with that–well, unsubtle and unseemly, perhaps–but resigning may never have been a viable possibility.

        • Todd is hitting .215. He hits HR’s. Todd is a right handed Adam Dunn with a better personality. Neither made the White Sox better.

    • I am unclear on this have you not watched Suarez misplay 3rd? I hated the lack of discipline of Frazier at the plate but a .240 BA with 35 HR’s and can FIELD his position that is an All-Star in todays game. There is not only the fact Suarez is clueless about that piece of leather he wears but his 75 point drop in BA because he thinks he is supposed to be a power guy makes him a really good AA player.

      • Frazier is undoubtedly, as of 2016, a better glove at 3rd and is likely to hit 40 homers vs. Suarez’s 25. But Suarez is hitting .250, Frazier .215. And, most importantly, Frazier is 6 years older and making about 16 times more than Suarez. I’d rather have Suarez now and going forward.

      • Suarez looked terrible at third in the first half, but he looks much better now, which has to be a good sign. Todd would not likely have been the answer at third by the time the Reds are serious contenders again.

      • Todd is hitting .215. He hits HR’s. Todd is a right handed Adam Dunn with a better personality. Neither made the White Sox better.

  3. I think Todd Frazier is referring to the 2013 and 2014 seasons when the Reds front office had chances to improve the team and their playoff stock. But didn’t. The Reds with Walt Jocketty at the helm did didly squat to improve the team. Nothing. Indecision by the front office killed off the 2013 season, right from Opening Day after Ludwick got hurt. Injuries took a toll in 2014. And then there was WJ’s bonehead move to plug an old and PED cheating Marlon Byrd in LF as WJ’s saving grace.
    I think Frazier is on target with his criticism.

    • I think this may be accurate. Of course it could be any number of things, the Reds FO has provided ample opportunity for criticism. But 2013 especially stands out as a missed opportunity simply because the Reds wouldn’t upgrade when it was obvious they needed to.

      • I think it is a combination of this and what O-Jim says about contract extension negotiations. The Reds “only” gave Frazier a 2 year deal that took up 2 of his 3 arbitration years. Yet, a few days later Mesoraco got a 4 year deal that took up his 3 arb eligible years plus one free agent year. I bet Frazier was a bit stung by that.

    • WVREDLEGS provides some evidence why Red’s ownership/front office doesn’t stack up.

    • This was my take, as well. Seems like criticism for the inability to improve the team in-season to try and help the playoff picture.

      • +1 your thoughts and that of WVRedlegs pretty much wrapped up my reaction as well and saved me some typing. I’d even add the failure to trade him and Chapman at the trade deadline.

      • WJ has lost his touch. Ever notice how he can’t swing deals with the young Turk GMs. Wasn’t that one of the reasons he was ousted from STL, he couldn’t get along with the young and coming front office types there?

    • I think there is a real good chance you knocked this one out of the park. That’s exactly what it sounded like to me too.

  4. My fantasy here is that Frazier was trying to close down a long term deal with the Reds and working things out with them was like buying a car at one of the old line dealerships where every seemingly negligible tweak in what you think is all but a done deal has to “go upstairs” for approval by some unseen big boss. When the deal “comes back down”, they’ve seemed to accept your proposal but in turn modified something else in the deal. Another iteration ensues, and so forth.

  5. I’d say he just means what he says and doesn’t think our front office is very good.

  6. I think that he is probably referring to opportunities to upgrade when we had a opportunity to win (2013-2014) But again I just think that Jockey is too set in his ways and is too afraid off making a bad deal that he has a hard time making a good one. If that is correct, and I am no expert, just have an opinion, then things may start to look better in the front office starting next year. We can only wait and see.

  7. It’s hard to take Frazier’s remark seriously. The White Sox FO is terrible. They’ve needed a rebuild for several years and have done nothing to that effect but continue to bring in the Melky Cabreras and Jimmy Rollins of the league. Rick Hahn, Kenny Williams, and Reinsdorf continue to flail around despite having one of the best pitchers on an incredibly team friendly contract. And Ventura isn’t very well respected in the clubhouse and makes questionable in game decisions, yet continues to have a job (for now). Between the Adam LaRoche clubhouse issue and the Chris Sale jersey affair, I cannot begin to fathom why Frazier felt the need to take a shot at the Reds FO.

    • This is exactly what I was thinking. Big market, bad contracts. If we were rating FO’s”, the ChiSox would rank below ours, IMO.

      • It’s all about the perception by the players that the GM and ownership care about winning. I think that’s what it comes down to here. Players always want to win. They generally don’t understand rebuilding and they also tend to think that owners are making tons of money. The WhiteSox front-office isn’t very good but to Frazier, they seem to be trying to win now and I think that may be part of what he’s getting at. Even if they aren’t doing any good at it.

        • Frazier also may think highly of the Sox because, after all, they traded for him. He should start playing better if only to validate his opinion about their FO’s wisdom.

      • The only thing that rates below the Reds FO at this point is whale feces IMO. I offer as exhibit A what this FO got from the Yankee’s for Chapman and what the Yankee’s got for him!!! That is as close to apples to apples as you can get and the Reds idiots got just enough rotten apples for a quart of apple butter and Cashman got an orchard

        • Not apples to apples. Chapman’s domestic violence incident was new and unresolved when the Reds traded him, and when prospects are part of a deal, you need to wait awhile to see what they become before you can really evaluate.

        • Going forward I will take Peraza over Frazier(Adam Dunn). Time will tell how the Yankees will do on the Chapman deal. Are you assuming Epstein gave away precious jewels for 2 1/2 months of Chapman?
          I don’t think so.

  8. He’s not wrong at all. Our front office doesn’t do a thing to get the team any better. They haven’t had a big splash in free agency since Choo in 2013 and the trades (though still early to tell) haven’t fared well for the Reds at the MLB level (i.e Caleb Cotham’s 7.40 ERA and Scott Schebler’s .225 BA). He really isn’t wrong with these comments, and many fans I think could agree with his comments.

    • The Reds traded Gregorious for Choo. He wasn’t a FA signing. The last big FA signing I can recall that the Reds made was Ryan Ludwick in 2012. Blake Wood was signed this offseason, but I wouldn’t count that as a big move. The Reds primarily use FA to fill in bullpen/bench/minor league depth. Which for a small market team is understandable.

      • The Ryan Ludwick signing wasn’t really a free agent splash in 2012 either. He was coming off down years in 2009, 2010 and 2011 and the Reds took a flier on him (1 year $2 million) that amazingly paid off. They followed that up paying him a ridiculous $15 million over the next 3 years, including $4.5 million to go away in 2015.

  9. Maybe he should worry more about his dead-last WAR among MLB third basemen, his dead-last batting average, and his sub-.300 OBP.

    • Fair points. Perhaps that’s why he’s kissing up to his current front office: “But I really, really like you guys, never mind the stats!” Plus, dingers!”

    • Sorry, Frazier is merely #21 among 24 qualified third basemen, not dead last.

  10. There is much evidence to support Frazier if he was saying that the Red’s ownership/front office doesn’t stack up.

  11. Todd Frazier was a popular Red, but that’s history. He’s got his own problems in ChiTown. I like the way the Reds are headed with the rebuild. Now if they have a strong bullpen come April, the Reds could challenge for a wild card spot next year.

  12. The White Sox FO is not regarding as good by almost anyone. Virtually all of their ” bold” moves fail. While its didficult to categorize them as a ” large market” franchise given the way the Cubs utterly trounce them in market share, they do have greater resources than most of their competitors in the AL Central and consistently fail.

    The Reds were good enough to win the WS in 2012 and unfortunately they didn’t. That’s baseball. They were good enough in 2013 and they didn’t. That’s baseball.

    During that stretch, they made trades, extended their core guys to whatever degree was possible and increased payroll by 50%. Post season success is almost utterly random. It is what it is.

    The Reds are a better team without Todd Frazier and the White Sox are on pace to be worse with Todd Frazier.

  13. Well in Frazier’s final year with the Reds they rolled out Jason Marquis and Kevin Gregg as pitching improvements despite the opinions of absolutely everyone else that has ever watched a professional baseball game. Doubling down on that fantastic decision….Jocketty put together the ABSOLUTE worst bench I’ve ever seen in 35 years of watching baseball.

    True Grit Schumaker…..Reds to couch

    Marquis….Reds to couch

    Boesch….I don’t know? Reds to Burger King manager possibly?

    Absolutely none of those guys could play the game of baseball

    Frazier is just reporting what he saw!

    • My point is, that stuff is better left in the clubhouse. Frazier might not look as bad as Latos right now but they’re in the same conversation.

      Instead of the home run derby, we will remember the whining.

      He cashes paychecks, so he’s just a disgruntled former employee

      • Eh, I’ll remember the good stuff. I don’t really have an issue with bad mouthing senior management or ownership and I’ll never understand people that do. This organization has seemed dysfunctional at the top for awhile now (not extremely so by any stretch, but there has seemed to be a disconnect between manager, GM, and ownership and overall lack of planning since Dusty was hired). Now, a player or coach criticizing the fans or the city? That’s a different story.

        You’re right though, some people never forgive, that’s for sure.

    • The guys that you reference all suck. I’m reasonably sure the Reds knew they would probably suck. They had stretched payroll as far as it could go. Those guys were available, affordable and they rolled the dice and came up short.

    • I’m glad I forgot how bad that bench was last year until you brought it up. In place of Gregg and Marquis, Walt’s pitching specials this year were Simon and Ohlendorf.

      At least Castelini made him swear off of the 2 year contract given to an old, washed up middle infielder who can’t hit. Of course he wasn’t trying to round out a playoff contender, so instead Walt couldn’t resist signing a Cuban SS who can’t hit for $7 million in the International signing period.

      About Frazier, I wish he would have stuck to the old adage of not saying anything if you can’t say something positive. I still like super Todd. He’s a good guy and I hope he does well going forward. But the Reds in their situation are better off having moved on.

  14. Frazier is probably incensed at the Reds because he was left in the minors to rot for a couple of years. One year he was promised the 25th spot on the roster and Dusty, being Dusty, sent him back because Dusty needed a left handed, light hitting, infielder who went 1 for 27. The Reds owe Todd after his playing days are over.

    • Dusty…like virtually every manager in the history of baseball…didn’t control the roster. He likely had input, but to suggest that he made a unilateral decision on Frazier is simply untrue and defies logic.

      Todd Frazier isn’t the first player in history to spend more time than necessary in the minors. With Rolen on the team, he was likely better served playing every day in AAA. Reasonable people can debate who should’ve played third base in 2012, but they weren’t out to screw Todd Frazier.

      Todd Frazier revived a direct deposit every 2 weeks during the season. The Reds owe him nothing.

      • I love your insight you teach me a great deal and that I am being completely honest but to make a comment about playing at AAA or being with the big club even being on the 40 man roster your aren’t making the Major league minimum. I have no way of knowing the difference in that check every two weeks but my guess it would be north of 400 thousand a year

  15. Dear Hot: You’re 100% wrong about Choo and Gregarious. Gregarious was traded to The Snakes but Choo wasn’t involved. Gregarious has thrived since he became a Yankee.

    • Nope.

      From Baseball-Reference: December 11, 2012: Traded as part of a 3-team trade by the Cincinnati Reds to the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Arizona Diamondbacks sent Matt Albers, Trevor Bauer and Bryan Shaw to the Cleveland Indians. The Cincinnati Reds sent Drew Stubbs to the Cleveland Indians. The Cleveland Indians sent Lars Anderson and Tony Sipp to the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Cleveland Indians sent Shin-Soo Choo, Jason Donald and cash to the Cincinnati Reds.

        • Yeah, unfortunately I rarely get to watch games anymore as my job and kids have eaten all my free time. I’m hopeful I can convert them into baseball fans soon!

  16. Our front office is one of the worst in baseball. Walt Jocketty and Dick Williams can’t operate a major league team. Our trading has been decent at best, and our free agent signings have been pitiful. I embrace the rebuild, but if we don’t have a front office that brings in good pieces for the future than we are in trouble.

    • Spencer, a bigger worry now is the right coaches and leaders to see the good (not great) collection of young talent becomes good (if not great) MLB players. The next three years are critical due to so many 18-24 year olds in the organization in need of tips and drills and motivation. If only a few reach potential, then we’re stuck as a mediocre team, not good enough for the playoffs and not bad enough to draft in the top 5. I hope not.

  17. I just think its hard for players, especially guys in their late twenties or early thirtities to accept that the team they are playing for has to rebuild. These guys all want to win and they expect the front office to go for it every year. These guys have a totally different investment in the team than we as fans do. They are not worried about the long term health of a franchise. They are not worried about payroll or prospects. This is the same point of view that Homer Bailey was coming from when he criticized the Reds for trading Jay Bruce.

    Viewed through that lens, you could see how Frazier could conclude that the Reds front office stinks and the White Sox are great. The Reds have tore it down and traded many of their best players to build for the future. The White Sox have refused to rebuild and have consistently put out teams projected to be around 500 in the hopes they get some breaks and make the playoffs. The thing is the White Sox haven’t accomplished anything with this strategy and right now the Reds future looks brighter.

  18. Ran into Frazier in Disney World last fall before he was traded and seemed like just another guy chasing his kid around.He probably is like most big leaguers in that he wants to win and cares nothing about the business side until its time for his business to be discussed.Npt knocking him at all because it is a business and he knows it so I wish him well for as long as he plays.

  19. I think the owner of reds may mean well but under him and above the manager doesn’t have a clue I stopped watching them once they traded bruce

    • That’s too bad for you because they’ve actually been fairly entertaining the past several weeks.

    • …and Bruce, on cue, has been pretty awful for the Mets. I bet their fans are pissed at us Reds fans for peddling crappy goods.

    • news flash, we’re better off without Bruce and Frazier, two of the biggest all-or-nothing hitters we have put up with the past 5 years. HRs are nice, but not if you sacrifice pretty much everything else. Frazier was a good fielder so I will give him that, but all in all, both players struggle to be average for their position (while being very well paid).

  20. I enjoyed watching Frazier play. I hope he does well. There is traction finally in this rebuild and I am looking ahead.

    • That’s a good way to put it. Most trades haven’t gone as well as we’d like (hey, we want steals of deals, like a few other teams pull here and there), but all in all, the base of young talent is there. NOW it’s up to front office and coaches to build this into a contending team in a couple of seasons. Do they have the skills to mold and improve the upside talent or will those upsides never realize like so many “prospects” before them? I sure hope for a good outcome, but Reds are shaky in motivating, cultivating young players.

    • That seems pretty conclusive Nick. The Reds ARE better off at 3rd base with Suarez instead of Frazier. And they will be even better off with Senzel if his promise turns into production. The Reds front office does make questionable decisions on a regular basis so that’s not news. Next topic?

  21. Frazier has had less than 1 year experience of Chicago and he had several years in Cincy. Give him time. He’ll become critical of Chicago when they toss him to the curb as well. Players are either assets or liabilities when when constructing a team’s roster. Frazier was considered a liabiily due to his age and contract. Based upon what we are getting out of Suarez and based upon Frazier’s current performance I would side with the Reds organization in determining Frazier as a liability.

  22. On another note. Now would be a great time to ask Suarez what he thinks about playing for the Reds. It would be great to get his perspective.

  23. Todd is right. Cincinnati is bad from ownership down. Jocetty & manager need to go. Best thing to happen in Cincinnati would be new ownership.

    • I will not disagree that the Reds need new ownership based upon the product the business owner is delivering. I will disagree on the other parts are I think Price is doing a pretty good job wth the pieces he has been given and I cant say just exactly what Jocketty has done right or wrong considering that I don’tt have access to journals, daily activities, and phone conversations. Maybe people don’t want to deal with the Reds? Maybe players dont’ care for cincinnati? Maybe the owner is tight on his purse strings? Maybe there are technical issues within the organization? I can’t answer those. I do know that despite a poor product we have a top 10 or close to top 10 farm system so no mater what happens today tomorrow is going to be brighter.

      • Dan, Your cmment is very good. My origiinal “no substance ” reply was directed at Jim,Sr. Foray who is in a deep negative zone regarding everyone involved with the Reds.

  24. Not trying to wear the red tinted glasses here but the White Sox FO has been objectively terrible. I’m ready to criticize Walt at a moment’s notice but at least we have been competitive recently in a much better division.

    • They haven’t been terrible, but they haven’t been good either. About the same as Jocketty, some solid deals, some awful ones.

  25. Frazier is saying that Reds went limp when pretty much all they needed was a good LF to be a favorite for a title two of three years.

    He’s saying the White Sox GM has balls and nerve, Jocketty doesn’t, when it comes to making a big in-season move.

    I don’t think the White Sox have faired any better than the Reds with trades by and large. To me, it’s maybe a more aggressive approach and same so-so (for now) results. Maybe in 3 years Jocketty looks like a genius or the Sox GM does, but right now the Reds and Sox aren’t exactly swindling teams in trades.

  26. Why is this news? He praises his new team, says something unspecific but negative about old team. What else is he going to say? We all have our own opinions on what the front office did during his time period, and Todd’s comments are not going to change mine. Is this going to influence future free agents in any way? Seems unlikely. All he is doing is vaguely running down his ex, and if we are going to be thin skinned about that sort of thing we should become Red Sox fans. 🙂

  27. I wouldn’t read too much into this. First, I contacted Jon Greenberg (go Bobcats!) via Twitter, and asked if Frazier was criticizing ownership or the GM. Jon’s answer: “Sounded like both. Wasn’t a big part of our conversation. Could’ve been either one, tho.”

    Second, guys used to say stuff like this 15 times a day. I’ve been reading a lot of old newspaper coverage lately, and in the 70s there was open warfare between players and management; team vs. team; and sometimes within the same team.

    Here’s what I think is most likely going on inside Frazier’s head (though I don’t think he’s thought any of this out expressly): “Todd Frazier is a very good player. The Reds traded him away. The White Sox, on the other hand, traded *for* Todd Frazier. Therefore, the White Sox are smart and the Reds are dumb.” Again, I don’t think any of that is conscious on his part, but I bet that’s most of it. Plus, he seems like a loyal guy, so he’s going to view his current organization in the most positive light.

    • It looks like your reply was late, so people didn’t notice it. I’m a couple of weeks behind on my Reds watching and commenting (I’m just watching the last game of the Angels series) so I’m really really late, but in case future redlegnation historians stumble on this thread….I think it’s pretty amazing you tweeted the author of the article and got further clarification. Thanks for sharing that.

  28. Wow, your interpretation of Frazier’s comments seems to confirm your own bias.

    Maybe, rather than trash Frazier, we can just see that he’s describing things from the POV of a player. He wants to win. So, maybe some players want to see a trade for James Shields because it means that ownership is trying o win–even if the decisions aren’t good ones. And maybe that means that Frazier the player didn’t like the rebuild and the extended losing it can cause.

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