2016 Reds / 2017 Reds

More roster moves for the Cincinnati Reds

I told you yesterday, after a series of moves by the Cincinnati Reds, that there would be more to come. Today we learn the following:

Nothing here is surprising. Caleb Cotham, Hernan Iribarren, and Yorman Rodriguez were destined to be non-roster invitees to the big league camp in spring training anyway. This news means that all three cleared waivers. I expect that all three will have a decent shot at making the Reds roster next year.

As for Abel De Los Santos…so long, we barely knew ya’. Best of luck out in sunny California.

Our buddy Wick had the hottest take on this:

47 thoughts on “More roster moves for the Cincinnati Reds

  1. The fact that Iribarren passed through waivers is a little surprising. A very good surprise though as I think he’ll be an instrumental bench piece for 2017.
    All 3 have chances to be bench/bullpen pieces. The loss De Los Santos is no loss.
    Separating the wheat from the chaff.

    • Iribarren could indeed be a valuable bench player. But he is 32 years old. The kind of team that might claim him would be a team that is rebuilding, or has a weak bench. Not much interest in a 32 year old bench player for most teams, to fill their own 40 man roster prior to the Rule 5 draft.

      • The thing is, with Iribarren, we are a rebuilding team with a weak bench. Also, bench players normally have one strong tool. At least in the minors, Iribarren has a 350 OBP (not a very good sample size of major league exp). If he can provide anything like that from the bench, I don’t know of any mlb team who wouldn’t take it from a bench player, especially from a bench player who has played at least 12 games in the minors at every position including pitcher, but 3 main positions.

        • Really, agreed on his talent and what he could contribute (potentially). But again, 32 years old. If he was 27, some team would have scooped him up.

      • I agree. I expect Cozart to be off the 40 man roster ahead of the Rule5 draft. They’ll make their best effort to get something for him; if they can’t get anything, then they will likely nontender him.

        .

  2. We are seeing an emerging signature of the new regime take shape in the way guys like Moscot, Lamb, YRod, and Cotham were handled. If a guy has had a look at the top levels and appeared to eventually have marginal or complimentary piece ceiling, they are not going to hold a spot for him (especially beyond option eligibility) whether the issue is strictly performance related or a combination of performance and physical durability.

    • To be clear, one or more of the guys I mentioned may still have a decent MLB career, perhaps even with the Reds. My point is that the days of holding up the train to see if somebody of this ilk will eventually come through seem to be in the rear view mirror.

      Let’s hope this also means an end to the “We’ve got Jack for that” mentality in shaping the active roster.

  3. The Reds could still trim ten more players from the 40 man and we wouldn’t even blink. And they’ll need to since there are quite a few folks who need to be added to the roster before the Rule 5 draft. Should be interesting…

    • Yeah, their entire Arizona Fall League contingent is basically there on tryout for the 40 man roster as opposed to past years when they’ve looked to give a bounce to top top prospects.

  4. Off topic, but I thought W J was in a advisory capacity now. MLB rumors quotes him, citing that Williams will take over as g m… what gives? Is w j still in charge until the winter meetings or what?

    • Jocketty’s contract ends today Oct 31, 2016. Nov. 1 he is no longer president of baseball operations. Happy day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • That’s the first time I’d seen a date for the start of Williams at the reigns. Yay! So ready for a change in the way the Reds do things. Here’s hoping Williams is a breathe of fresh air for the organization.

    • While mistakes were made, Walt’s teams did make the playoffs 3 times in 9 years…the same number as the Pirates and Cubs. He leaves behind a solid core of talent and fair amount of payroll flexibility.

      In the 32 seasons before he arrived, the Reds made the playoffs 3 times. They had 7 straight losing seasons and 10 of 12 before he took over.

      What a war criminal

      • Wayne krivsky traded wily mo Pena for Bronson arroyo…got Brandon Phillips for nothing…drafted Devon mesoraco and handed over Joey Votto.johnny cueto Jay Bruce and Homer Bailey in their primes….not bashing Walt….but that 2010-2013 run was years in the making…..and not his…..and the reds in 2012 were really really good….but didn’t win….several times he failed to make deadline moves …he also made some good ones too. Time for a change though.

        • I agree with most of your points.

          The 2012 was very good and didn’t win. Most very good or even great teams don’t win. They lost to the eventual Champion…in the final game with the winning run at the plate. The playoffs are utterly random. In 12 games against the Giants ( including playoffs) it was 6-6 and the run differential was 11.

          We don’t know what payroll constraints existed the impacted deadline moves. We don’t know what needed to be given up in order to improve.

          Jocketty made mistakes and it is time for a change. However, I think there is a delusional element at times that seems to not understand that the Reds have virtually no margin for error and being their GM is one of the most challenging jobs in the game. You have to almost be perfect just to have a chance.

        • That is true. But 2012 was a go-for-it year. The Mat Latos and Sean Marshall trades thinned out a minors system that wasn’t necessarily loaded. According to Doug Gray’s post 2011 season top-25 Reds prospects list, those two trades took out 5 of the Reds top 15 prospects. The Reds #2 Grandal, #4 Alonso, and and #15 Boxberger went to SD in the Latos deal. The Reds #8 Sappelt and #11 Torreyes went to CHI in the Marshall deal.
          That jolt to the farm system had to give Jocketty extreme pause when he entered trade talks at the 2012 trade deadline. He still had Mesoraco, Cozart, Frazier, BHam, Didi Gregorius, and Cingrani that he held onto. Gregorius turned into Choo before the 2013 season but the others became regulars. Not much leeway there for Jocketty. It was time for Jocketty to be creative, not cheap. Jocketty was able to lure away Broxton from the Royals at the trade deadline for a couple of lower prospects only because Broxton was an impending free agent. But a reliever was not a need, and Broxton, Marshall, and Chapman were no Nasty Boys re-creation either.
          The June 2012 brought the Reds Travieso and Winker in the first 2 picks, but not much after that to replenish what had been traded. Both were high schoolers and would be years away from the Major Leagues. And still haven’t made it.
          In 2012, after Votto went down in late June and again the Sunday after the all-star break, Jocketty had time to do something. The Reds were one bat shy, yet Jocketty couldn’t get one. He relied too much on an injured Scott Rolen and Ryan Ludwick. That is on him.
          Jocketty as GM, while not totally bland, is a weak sauce. It just goes to show you, if you have a chance for the World series, better take full advantage of the opportunity to get there. The Reds and Nats didn’t do what was necessary in 2012 and both teams GM’s probably have some regrets in how they handled that season.

        • WV, while your points are good, it still comes down to what did he have to spend and what would he need to give up? He doesn’t decide when it’s time to be ” cheap” ….it isn’t his money to spend.

          Even if he had improved the roster at the deadline we still have no idea if that would’ve made a difference. How a team performs over a 5 game stretch is utterly random. All a GM can do is get to the playoffs….anything behind that is just sheer luck.

          Again, mistakes were made…but no GM gets them all right. Bob Howsam inherited Rose, Perez, Bench and other pieces that were dealt for better players. His draft record from 1970 on was subpar to awful. That isn’t a job were perfection is possible. Theo Epstein gave Jason Heyward 184 million.

          The Reds were good enough to win the 2012 World Series…that is all a GM can do.

          • I do agree with this part about ownership and budget. Hard to know the role owner played in not making moves, delaying Frazier/Chapman trades, etc. Not all on Jocketty. But that doesn’t mean none of it was on Jocketty, either.

        • Steve …no question mistakes were made and Jocketty owns that.

          It would be interesting to see what his 9 year record is relative to the Reds ” resource peer group” happens to be:
          Pirates
          Twins
          Brewers
          A’s
          Indians
          Royals
          Mariners
          Rays

          I’ll check it out later.

        • In all fairness, good teams are almost always years in the making and, as Chuck points out, most good teams don’t win the WS. Baseball is a funny game: Who would have thought that the mighty Cubbies (two words that do not naturally sit in close proximity) would be down 3-2 and needing to run the table in Cleveland?

        • I listed 9 teams as being in the Reds ” resource peer group”.

          Since 2008, 8 of 9 have an overall losing record….the Rays have won 53% of their games.

          The Reds have the 4th highest winning percentage at 49.18%….basically tied with the A’s, Brewers and Indians.

          The Reds are 1 of 4 teams with 3 or more playoff appearances. The Rays have 4.

          They are 1 of 2 teams that have 3 or more 90+ win seasons and are 1 of 4 with 2 or fewer 90+ loss seasons.

          Relative to teams with similar financial constraints, the Reds did slightly better than average.

          In 22 years as a GM, Jocketty’s teams won 52% of their games and made the playoffs 10 times while averaging 14th in payroll. Only twice, 2005 and 2003 Cardinals, did he have a top 10 payroll.

          He made mistakes and I look forward to the new era, but to suggest that he is bad at his job is a bit silly.

        • RE: Chuck’s analysis of similar resource teams and Jocketty.

          I think Jocketty developed a style which worked very well in StL. However, by the end of his tenure there a sea change was underway; and, he missed it. Thus his falling out with DeWitt and subsequent departure from StL.

          In Cincy he basically inherited a pool of talent which was on the cusp of its window, Give Jocketty credit for recognizing this and making some moves which helped push them to very near the top. We will probably never know why 2013 was allowed to go up in smoke or why stood pat for 2014.

          To me Jocketty’s greatest failing in Cincy was not avoiding the obvious train wreck ahead when four of his five starting rotation pitchers were on line to leave team control after 2015. They did get Disco for Latos which was a good move. The other apparent responses were to burn two first round draft choices on college relievers, Lorenzen and Howard, with zero and very little starting pitching experience respectively and attempt to fast track convert them to starters which has been a disaster in Howard’s case and appears will most likely yield them no better than a reliever in Lorenzen’s. This is hardly a competent use of first round picks. Then there is the $27M sunk for Iglesias also in pursuit of a starter when the rest of the world saw him as a reliever which is looking to have been the correct evaluation.

        • All great points, Jim

          I’m not a Jocketty lover as much as I’m a realist. It is very difficult for a small market team to be consistently succesful and unless your organizational infrastructure enables you to consistently produce average to above average MLB talent then you’re going to have peaks and valleys.

          I’ve tried to take a contrarian view on Jocketty in order to show that virtually all teams in the Reds peer group have the same challenges and only a truely exceptional GM-organization can consistently contend. Given the limited margin for error, you need to be extremely lucky as well.

          When 20% of your payroll misses the better part of 2 years ( Bailey and Mesoraco) you have way to overcome that unless your development system is amongst the best. I love Theo Epstein, but he’s never had to worry about a million here or a million there. In general, Jocketty has had to do more with less.

          It’s unlikely that there is a Messiah GM out there that can enable the Reds to consistently compete.

      • Need to factor when making broad (end-point cherry-picked) historical comparisons: Wild card (1 team) started in 1994. Second wild card team added in 2011.

        Reds won two division titles – 2010 and 2012 when Jocketty was in charge. Vast majority of the 2010 (and arguably the 2012 team) were not Jocketty’s players. I liked a lot of his trades (Rolen, both Latos trades, Sean Marshall, several of the rebuilding dumps). But … the moves not made. Complacency before 2011. Trade deadline 2013 asleep at the switch. 2014 offseason. Never sufficiently prioritizing on-base skills. Chapman debacle.

        Zero post-season series wins during his time. Six losing seasons out of nine, including last three. More than 91 reg. season wins only once.

        No one says he’s a war criminal. Pretty average GM at best, and definitely behind the times when he retired.

        • Those 2010-2013 teams were loaded and fun to watch…That 2012 team was so good..2013 was the year WJ sat on his hands…Could have had some more bats for the home stretch but hindsight is 20/20. I guess 1990 makes up for 2012.

        • That’s about as fair of an assessment of Jocketty as one can have without knowing all of the behind the scenes info.

          I definitely didn’t appreciate the “We’ve got Jack for that mentality” during the years when they were competing only to see a 180 turn in mentality during the rebuild years when they panicked and traded Chapman at the worst time.

          But that doesn’t paint the whole picture. I liked the Latos trades, the Marshall trade. Hell, I even liked the Choo trade even though there was evidence that the Reds didn’t make it for all of the correct reasons. He made some shrewd pickups in adding Arthur Rhodes and Alfredo Simon (the 1st time at least) among others and then stepped on his own toes with the litany of below replacement level bench player signings.

          As Chuck noted above, “You have to almost be perfect just to have a chance.” I’d say it can be a less than perfect effort but is surely can’t be an average effort. And that’s what the Reds largely got during his tenure.

          At least we had a few good seasons that have broken up what has been the worst run in this franchise’s history. Here’s to hoping that new leadership can restore a balance between the feast and the famine.

  5. I am holding out hope the Reds trim to 39 (there are still several bums on the 40 man roster… Jumbo, Sampson, Josh Smith, Ohlendorf, etc). I would like to see them ready to pounce in the Rule V draft if a solid upside player is there, I assume they pick 2nd in that draft too?

    Now, I really don’t know what prospects must be protected, but there is still cut fodder on the 40 (no upside, gas-on-fire type pitchers), so if they can protect the likely picks and open one slot, I would be a happy camper.

    • Here is Doug Gray’s primer on the Reds Rule 5 situation.

      http://redsminorleagues.com/2016/08/10/early-look-protect-rule-5-draft/

      Keep in mind this was written in August so the references to the “current” 40 man roster situation are outdated.

      To summarize, 9 guys from Doug’s 2016 top 25 Reds prospects need to be added to the 40 man. He lists another 11 he feels merit close consideration. Nearly all of the Reds current Arizona Fall League contingent among this second group of 11.

      Whether or not the Reds leave a spot open on their 40 man to have a shot at grabbing a brass ring guy in the Rule 5, I think the consensus is that it will be surprising if they don’t end losing a guy or two or even more.

    • Ohlendorf shouldn’t be on the 40-man. He was a free-agent and signed only a 1-year deal. As far as I know, he’s a free-agent.

      • It is only a technicality, but he won’t be a free agent until he files paperwork to be one with MLB. They can’t file the paperwork until 24 hours after the World Series concludes. A couple of more days though. Once he files with MLB the Reds can remove him from their 40-man roster.

        • So if he doesn’t file for FA, they would actually have to DFA/ release/ nontender him to get him off the 40 man? That seems like a whacked way of doing things.

        • You know I’m not sure. Maybe the teams can put those players off of their 40-man roster once the F-A period begins after the WS.

    • I think he put Melancon in during the 8th once in the LA series, didn’t he?

    • It’s true that it worked, but it will be interesting to see if he is available and effective in tonight’s game–also an elimination game.

  6. Francona is now 11-2 in the World Series. Took the big money team and won in Boston and now’s he’s taking a relative have-not and taking out the big boys one by one. Maybe the manager does matter a little bit. Trying flipping a coin 13 times and getting 11 heads!

    • While I am a big Terry Francona fan, the manager makes a marginal difference. I do feel that the manager makes more of an impact in the postseason however. As for the coin toss analogy, streaks of much longer than 11 in a row happen and happen regularly. They are rare but they do happen.

    • His front office went out and got him Andrew Miller at the deadline (and paid a heavy price for it), so even Francona’s forwarding-thinking type of usage of Miller can’t all be credited to him.

      Managers can make a difference, but a good manager can never make a bad team a good one. Francona has won, but he’s always had the benefit of a good time (like every other “good” manager in history.)

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