Last night on twitter I reached out to everyone for ideas on what to write about this week for my article here at Redleg Nation. There were a few good ideas that came through, but I ran out of time while doing some work on the Cincinnati Reds Top 25 Prospect List that I’m releasing throughout the week over at Due to that, I’m just going to post where I will answer your questions. While I do specialize in the minor leagues, I will take any baseball related question. It’s been 2.5 months since we last had one of these here at Redleg Nation, so hopefully we’ve got some things to cover.

  • Try to avoid questions that will require me to look up answers (such as: Who was the last guy to steal 25 bags and hit 25 home runs in the system).
  • Try to avoid overly long answer-type questions. I tend to give thorough and detailed answers as it is, so please don’t have me type out a novel.
  • Each user can ask three questions.
  • Ask your questions before 8PM and I will be sure to answer it. If you ask after 8PM on Wednesday, then I can’t guarantee that I will answer your question.

Join the conversation! 30 Comments

  1. From these two groups:

    (1) Players on the current Reds roster

    (2) Players currently in the Reds minor league system that you anticipate playing for the big league club in 2018

    Who does it make sense to spend a month or two in the minors to gain an extra year of control?

    • 1. Tyler Mahle. He’s the only one that will really give you that extra year for that amount of time.

      2. You can keep Nick Senzel down for 10 days and get the extra year. Not that I’d expect him to be up in April, but he’s the guy you manipulate the service time for.

  2. Shed Long received a lot of love (#8) from you in your top 25. Wrist injuries can be problematic. Will he be 100% this spring and can we expect him to put up offensive numbers in AA this season comparable to his performance in A+ last season?

    After stepping up an mashing the ball in his 1st exposure at A+ in 2016, Aristides Aquino had an equally disappointing season at AA in 2017. A drop of .065 in ISO and a drop of .057 in AVG does not bode well for Aquino’s future prospects. Does Aquino have to produce this season to avoid dropping out of consideration as a MLB prospect?

    • 1. Wrist injuries suck. With that said, Shed *should be * 100% in the spring, at least from this specific issue. Not that there’s something else to worry about, but things can come up of course. When he went to Double-A last year he increased his walk rate and decreased his strikeout rate – good signs. What didn’t play as well as his power – which isn’t entirely unexpected – Pensacola plays enormous for left handed hitters, or at least it has in the past (I have not run the park factors this season yet). And unlike the first few years of it’s existence, left field also played pitcher friendly because the fence moved back 17 feet. So, I don’t think we’ll see the same kind of numbers he put up in Daytona for that reason alone – the power will be tough to play at that kind of level because of the home park. I do think we’ll see a good offensive season from him though – he can hit. I just don’t think it’s going to be a .900+ OPS.

      2. I don’t think it’s a do-or-die season, but it would go a long way towards helping. He’ll be 24, so you won’t give up on him, but 2019 will also be his final option year, so you want to see steps taken forward.

  3. Thanks for doing this, it’s always fun to gain your insight into things Reds related:

    Out of Garrett, Reed, and Stephens:
    1 – who do you predict will start the most games in 2018 for the Reds?
    2. – who will make the most bullpen appearances in the next 2 seasons?
    3 – who (if any) would you move to the bullpen sooner rather than later?

    • 1. Garrett.
      2. Garrett.
      3. Stephens – less upside as a starter and he’s far down the depth chart as a starter, too. But, that FB/CV combo would play very well in the bullpen. I’d probably make that move very soon.

  4. Doug,

    Love all the stuff you do on RML and I strongly suggest anyone and everyone to support him on Patreon if you can. He does the most in depth reviews and rankings of Reds minor league players this side of the internet! All of us fans thank you for your efforts!

    1. Do you think Blandino would make a better super sub at the ML level? Seems like he has versatility position wise, walks, hits for a bit of power. I get the Reds like Peraza, but I feel as though he would be better off fixing things at the minor league level and try to up those strike-zone and patience skills. Blandino just looks really solid to me.
    2. The Reds could have a pretty decent bullpen next if they move Reed, Stephens, Etc to RHP no? Not to mention they have some solid looking RHP prospects in Weiss and Herget near the majors.
    3. If the Reds trade for an elite position player and give up some prospects. Who would you rather replace? Billy in CF with Yelich, Pederson, etc? Or would you rather shore up SS with a Simmons, Marte, Beckham acquisition?

    • 1. Blandino has no experience in the outfield, and he certainly can’t handle center field like Peraza can. He’s not quite the shortstop that Peraza is either. Of course, right now, Peraza’s the starting shortstop, so they aren’t vying for the exact same spot as things go. When I think “super sub” I think of a guy who can handle center, and that’s not Blandino. I do think he could handle the corner outfield spots with some experience there, though. So, if that kind of guy fits what you consider super sub, sure. I think that his bat could play fine in that kind of role.

      2. I don’t think that Reed would make a good right handed pitcher….. typos are fun. But, I do think that the Reds could wind up with a strong bullpen from internal options, particularly transitioning guys that are currently starting into relief roles.

      3. If I only get to choose between your scenarios, give me Yelich. But, I do think that the Reds absolutely need to upgrade at either shortstop of center field.

  5. Hi Doug. Daily reader of your site.

    1. Brought up turning Gutierrez into a high leverage reliever on your site yesterday. If the Reds decide to do that, what is his ETA to the majors?

    2. If the Reds trade Scooter, and I hope they do, who do you like better for 2nd base? Herrera, who I know is out of options, or Blandino? Assuming Peraza is at short.

    3. What teams do you think would be interested in Scooter or one of Duvall or Schebler? Pretty sure at least one of those 3 plus Hamilton will not be a Red next year.

    • 1. IF they did that, but I don’t think they will, late 2018.

      2. I’d imagine Herrera would get the nod simply because he is out of options. Unless he just flat out fell on his face, at least. You never know how a guy will recover from a shoulder injury, but before he went under the knife, I felt better about his bat than Blandino’s. Not the defender, though. I’d give Herrera the chance first.

      3. I honestly don’t know all of the teams well enough to answer this, and I don’t have time to go through each team and their farm system to figure out who has these specific needs.

  6. Mr. Doug,
    1. What are your thoughts on the Reds fielding a second Rookie level team here in the east in the Appalachian League in Greenville, TN?
    2. With the park factors in Pensacola as you stated above, would the Reds look to move their AA team any time soon after their agreement expires in Pensacola?
    3. Why do you favor or value a pitcher’s velocity more than a pitcher’s ability to locate their pitches? i.e. Hunter Greene over Mahle in your rankings. The Twins were super-smart to bypass on Greene. MacKenzie Gore (#3 overall pick) would have been a much better pick for the Reds.

    • 1. I absolutely love it. It gives the Reds more chances to develop players. If they can get one extra big leaguer every 3 years, even if it’s just a useful reliever, because they didn’t have to cut someone four years earlier because of roster limitations, it’s a big time win.

      2. I don’t think so. The facility is great, the field is great, it’s close to their Advanced-A team, which cuts down on travel and makes it easier to deal with roster moves in the short term – which is a real issue at times when your teams aren’t close (for example when the Advanced-A team was in Bakersfield they would often pull up guys from the AZL to fill out the final roster spot for a week and that guy would just be a warm body for an emergency).

      3. You can’t teach velocity. Sort of. You can teach the ability to locate. Sort of. It’s easier to improve location than it is velocity, especially at the elite level velocity range. The harder you throw, the less control you need. Less reaction time plays better than control, because without it, you don’t need control, you need command and you need elite level command. Which about ten people alive actually have.

      As for your ridiculous comments about Greene – don’t.

      • in his defense, Mackenzie Gore does look pretty awesome, and put up great (albeit meaningless) numbers in his after the draft

        • In his *outings* after the draft

        • If he had said he preferred Gore to Greene, that’s fine. But instead he went down an insulting road for whatever reason. And when you do that, I’m going to call you out every single time.

  7. How good can Taylor Trammell be?
    Is he a 2 hole hitter in MLB?
    Do AA pitchers conquer Jose Siri or does he said through high A and AA?

    • Sail

    • 1. Very good. I think he’s got an All-Star ceiling. He’s a potential 20 HR, 20 steal center fielder. I think he’s got the bat to be a potential #2 hitter.

      2. That’s the big question with Siri, isn’t it? I wish I knew the answer. I think he’ll have some success in Daytona next year, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I wonder how he’ll transition to Double-A pitching. I really liked the improvements he showed in pitch recognition from 2016 to 2017. The slider is what still gives him troubles. I believe he sees every other pitch well enough. He’ll have to improve against the slider to have real success in the upper minors, though.

  8. Which minor leaguers are out of options and must be added to Reds roster or risk losing?

    • No prospects are. But Dilson Herrera, who isn’t technically a prospect but considered a minor leaguer, is. Amir Garrett qualifies for a 4th option year if the option is used in 2018. If it’s not, then he no longer will get the 4th option.

  9. 1) Who plays the majority of innings in CF for Dayton next year: Fairchild, Gordon, or Sugilio?
    2) Any updates on Travieso’s rehab, and is he expected to be ready for spring training?
    3) Does Chris Okey move up to AA to start 2018 despite his dreadful 2017 at the plate to make room for Tyler Stephenson in Daytona?

    • 1. Fairchild got the most action there in Billings, so I’d expect that to continue next year – but I think they’ll all get time there. I don’t see it becoming a situation like in 2017 in Dayton where almost all of the time went to Jose Siri despite Trammell and Friedl being able to handle the position.

      2. I don’t have specifics, but the last update I had was that rehab was going well and he was feeling good about it. I’m not sure about his timetable, though.

      3. I don’t think so. I expect Okey to return to Daytona and split time with Stephenson (with the other being the DH most days).

  10. Not that the Reds made the wrong pick with Greene, because he had the most value in the draft, but what type of ML-ready player could they get for him in trade? I understand he is likely many years from the majors, so how much does that affect his value?

    After Senzel, which player is closest to a can’t miss prospect for the Reds?

    Which high-upside prospect has the biggest bust likelihood? I would guess Siri?

    • 1. I don’t know, exactly, but I’d imagine he’s be the type of guy who could carry a trade for a legit #1 with 2-3 years left on their deal. I also don’t think the Reds will think about trading him.

      2. Winker. Not that he’s the same caliber prospect, but he’s very safe. it’s highly unlikely that he just flops and provides nothing. He’s going to hit. He’s going to get on base some.

      3. I don’t think it’s Siri. It’s probably one of the toolsy types in rookie ball. There are a few 5-tool types down there who haven’t proven much, but do have that real high upside.

  11. “If” we try to make a deal for an available #1 SP who do you see as the most available and yet desirable in our minors to throw into that deal? (Guess that might mean that the perceived value exceeds the real value.)

    Personally I’m ok with going with the home town kid Scooter and/or Cozart in at least the short-term to free up a Peraza or Herrera to include in that deal. The only players in my mind that should be untouchable is Winker, really looking forward to seeing him play full time, possibly back to back with Votto towards the top of the lineup.

    • 1. I think that Taylor Trammell is every bit as valuable as what the perception is, but I think he’s the kind of guy that’s going to be desired in such a deal. He’ll have to go in a deal like you propose. It’s tough to say who has more perceived value than real value…. it depends on who is doing the perceiving.

      I can’t imagine anyone have any real interest in building a deal around Peraza or Herrera. Peraza is coming off of a season where he was one of the worst hitters in the Majors and Herrera is coming off of shoulder surgery. The Reds would be selling each at their lowest point, and no team is going to look at either right now and think “this guy has lots of value, let’s trade a real asset for them”.

  12. 1. Is there any chance that Reds fans will see Nick Howard pitch for the Reds in 2018 or 2019? 2. Same question about Jonathan Crawford? 3. Same question about Jon Moscot?

    • 1. Nick Howard is coming off of shoulder surgery. He pitched well in instructional league from what I was told. I wouldn’t expect him to pitch with the Reds in 2018 for sure. After that, it’ll just depend on exactly how he performs.

      2. I wouldn’t count on it. He walked 79 batters and hit 15 more in 87.2 innings with just 44 strikeouts this past season. That’s more than a batter per inning he’s putting on by walking or hitting them. In A-ball.

      3. Moscot is coming back from Tommy John. I expect he’ll pitch in AAA next year, so if he performs, then there’s a decent chance he could join the big league club. He’s no longer on the 40-man, so that is working against him – but if he performs, he’s a phone call away and that puts him on a very, very different level than the other two guys.

  13. I’m still a fan of Cody Reed, despite his rough times. Are the Reds only thinking of him as a RP? If he can conquer his control issues (big If I know), I think he can be a solid starter. What do you think?

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