Yesterday, I planned to run a poll to gauge how ready the fan base was to stop waiting and have the Reds put their foot on the collective gas. Well, I ran that poll and posting it here is pointless. Essentially the fan base wants the 25 best players on the roster either NOW or as soon as the Reds get another year of control with Senzel.
So I became curious about what a crowd-sourced roster would look like. I asked the Nation and this is what they gave us:
Catcher – Tucker Barnhart
First base – Joey Votto
Second base – Scooter Gennett
Shortstop – Nick Senzel
Third base – Eugenio Suarez (DL)
Left Field – Adam Duvall
Center Field – Scott Schebler (DL)
Right Field – Jesse Winker
This is an interesting roster. It is VERY offense heavy. This team would likely hit quite well, but the defense would be terrible up the middle (I think this lineup would turn the Reds in to a below average defensive team, they were +20 runs defensively last year). My personal opinion is that Blandino is probably a better player than Gennett now largely because he is certainly a better fielder. Based on what I’ve seen, I’d say Blandino is slightly above average defensively at second and probably a fair bet to hit as well as Gennett. I gave respondents the option to have Brandon Dixon in both the outfield and the infield, he was selected in neither instance. I honestly don’t know why you’d want Hamilton and Ervin both on the bench, but there we are. I will say that the trend in the poll comments was that Billy or Ervin should start in the parks with larger outfields.
The starting rotation is arranged in the order respondents preferred the players. That mean Bailey is regarded as the number five starter. Romano and Finnegan were close for the sixth spot (which is needed with Disco hurt) and the wisdom of twitter preferred Romano as a starter and Finnegan in the pen to Finnegan as a starter and Romano starting at AAA. I also asked about Lorenzen as a starter and he got no traction. Garrett, you’ll note, was regarded as the third best starter in the organization.
The bullpen is about what you’d expect, with the addition of Finnegan. I have an asterisk next to Rainey because I didn’t poll him, but the Reds called him up today. I do think he’s one of the best options, I just didn’t think they were ready to pull the trigger on him yet developmentally.
With the pitchers, I included more than the minimum number for obvious reasons.
Overall, I’m not sure this roster is better than what the Reds currently have. I think the strengths and weaknesses are different, but I’m not sure you’d see a meaningful difference in win total from the two configurations. This is assuming, of course, that Senzel is up shortly and stays up.
For whatever it’s worth, I’d go with a Senzel/Blandino middle infield and something close to the current outfield rotation. I would absolutely start Garrett and move Finnegan to the pen. But I understand the case to have Finnegan in the rotation. I’d have Peraza and Gennett as my infield bench subs. I’m split on Ervin vs. Dixon for the fifth outfielder, but we’re talking 25th man on the roster at that point.
What do you think?
Jason has been a fan of the Reds since he was born. He really had no choice in the matter. He has been writing at Redleg Nation for a few years, and also writes and edits at The Hardball Times. His debut novel, When the Sparrow Sings, is available now and concerns baseball, among other things. You can find more information at jasonlinden.com.