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RFS62
01-23-2006, 09:34 PM
When looking at the Reds, like playing chess, you would be wise to first consider what threatens your survival.

First short term, then long term. Threat assessment.

When Castellini took over the reins just three scant days ago, I have to believe he's already done his assessment.

Today, he knocked off the main threat to our short term prospects. And his second move was to bring in an expert to analyze the bane of our existance, the pitching.

So, what does RedsZone see as the next items on the list to assess and rectify, with extreme prejudice?

buckeyenut
01-23-2006, 09:54 PM
Today, he knocked off the main threat to our short term prospects. And his second move was to bring in an expert to analyze the bane of our existance, the pitching.

What was the second move? I must have missed it in all the DanO hoopla.

wheels
01-23-2006, 10:45 PM
They need to fix the defense, particularly center field.

Somehow, some way they've got to move Pena or Kearns (preferably Pena) for a kid that can cover some ground out there. They won't be preventing many runs from the mound this season, so anything they can do to help the exasperatingly bad defense will be welcomed by me.

They also have to do something with that mess of infielders. They need to be sure to play the good ones, use the fast guy as a pinch runner, use the slow guy as a pinch hitter. If they gripe too much, show 'em the door because it won't kill them to eat those contracts. If I were Kullman, I'd be looking for a reason to bag those two DanO deadweights.

remdog
01-23-2006, 11:08 PM
For the long term, Castellini has to restore the Reds to a powerful regional franchise. He has to make inroads in the nether regions that overlap with the Cards, Cubs/White Sox, Tigers, Indians, Pirates and Braves. Beyond a better product on the field, better marketing, more visibility (TV/Radio) and creating the perception that the Reds really do want to win will go a long way towards insuring long range viability.

Rem

MartyFan
01-23-2006, 11:16 PM
Did I hear right that Mario Soto is back with the organization?

RFS62
01-23-2006, 11:23 PM
What was the second move? I must have missed it in all the DanO hoopla.


He hired Beattie to assess the pitching from top to bottom throughout the organization.

BCubb2003
01-23-2006, 11:45 PM
Did I hear right that Mario Soto is back with the organization?

Yes, but he's a No. 4 or 5 starter at the most, even on this team.

Cedric
01-24-2006, 12:02 AM
They need to fix the defense, particularly center field.

Somehow, some way they've got to move Pena or Kearns (preferably Pena) for a kid that can cover some ground out there. They won't be preventing many runs from the mound this season, so anything they can do to help the exasperatingly bad defense will be welcomed by me.

They also have to do something with that mess of infielders. They need to be sure to play the good ones, use the fast guy as a pinch runner, use the slow guy as a pinch hitter. If they gripe too much, show 'em the door because it won't kill them to eat those contracts. If I were Kullman, I'd be looking for a reason to bag those two DanO deadweights.

Pena is above average defensively in CF.

Redsland
01-24-2006, 12:19 AM
Pena is above average defensively in CF.
:laugh:

:bowrofl:

SteelSD
01-24-2006, 12:20 AM
So, what does RedsZone see as the next items on the list to assess and rectify, with extreme prejudice?

In my mind, the single most important item to be addressed is the hiring of an intelligent General Manager who is comfortable speaking truth to power.

Castellini hired Beattie to (allegedly) assess the pitching situation from top to bottom. Called him an "advisor". To me, that indicates that Castellini is comfortable having those around him who have the ability to speak truth to power. You don't hire an "advisor" if you're not comfortable with that.

That being said, we can only hope that Castellini has the ability to figure out that Beattie hasn't shown any real aptitude during his tenure as a GM. And yes, it concerns me that Beattie is tasked with assessing the pitching situation after he's been co-GM on an Orioles team that has finished in the MLB bottom ten the last two seasons.

Beyond the "Pitch to Contact" garbage, the "Take one Strike" directive (which has merit if implemented properly), team defense at the MLB level, and the starting rotation, Bob Castellini must figure out what he doesn't know how to fix and quickly find the person who'll be best suited to provide creative bold solutions. If that one thing does not happen, the rest are almost entirely moot.

In short, the biggest threat to that end is Bob Castellini's ability to, through introspection, understand the limitations of his own knowledge base coupled with his ability to trust those who can provide solutions Castellini himself may not entirely understand. If the reverse happens and Castellini surrounds himself only with what is familiar while attempting to micro-manage folks who are set on telling him what they know he wants to hear?

Well...let's just say that it takes longer to get rid of an Owner than it does a General Manager.

After listening to Castellini, I'm entirely open to the possibility that he'll be self-aware enough to choose the right course. If he does, he'll be a truly great leader. But then, truly great leaders are rare. So folks will have to excuse me if for being only cautiously optimistic.

Cedric
01-24-2006, 12:22 AM
M2 and I have been screaming that for awhile. Rather than laughing you might want to argue some facts. None of which you will find from his performance at the end of the 03 and 04 season.

wheels
01-24-2006, 01:01 AM
M2 and I have been screaming that for awhile. Rather than laughing you might want to argue some facts. None of which you will find from his performance at the end of the 03 and 04 season.

He does have more range than Griffey, he's a physical freak of nature no doubt, and he is more comfortable in CF than any other position....But I'd be willing to lose that, and his offensive potential in order to get a true to life flycatcher of a center fielder. I wouldn't care if the kid couldn't hit all that much right away.

WVRedsFan
01-24-2006, 02:11 AM
He does have more range than Griffey, he's a physical freak of nature no doubt, and he is more comfortable in CF than any other position....But I'd be willing to lose that, and his offensive potential in order to get a true to life flycatcher of a center fielder. I wouldn't care if the kid couldn't hit all that much right away.

Name one we could get with what we've got to give.

I can't.

ochre
01-24-2006, 03:22 AM
Name one we could get with what we've got to give.

I can't.
I'd put something together and try to get:
http://detroit.tigers.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/team/player.jsp?player_id=434158
http://thebaseballcube.com/players/G/curtis-granderson.shtml
career minors line:
BA .300
OBP .383
SLG .495
OPS .878

Reasonable performance in the majors last year.

ochre
01-24-2006, 03:27 AM
I think its a bit misleading to call Pena above average in center field. It might be argued that he's the best of the candidates on the roster as a day to day CFer, but I've not seen anything to convince me he'll be appreciably better than he was in the minors.

SteelSD
01-24-2006, 05:40 AM
I'd put something together and try to get:
http://detroit.tigers.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/team/player.jsp?player_id=434158
http://thebaseballcube.com/players/G/curtis-granderson.shtml
career minors line:
BA .300
OBP .383
SLG .495
OPS .878

Reasonable performance in the majors last year.

You need to stop telling people about Curtis Granderson or my fantasy baseball league is eventually going to get wind of it.

GAH! ;)

RedsBaron
01-24-2006, 07:47 AM
In my mind, the single most important item to be addressed is the hiring of an intelligent General Manager who is comfortable speaking truth to power.

Castellini hired Beattie to (allegedly) assess the pitching situation from top to bottom. Called him an "advisor". To me, that indicates that Castellini is comfortable having those around him who have the ability to speak truth to power. You don't hire an "advisor" if you're not comfortable with that.

That being said, we can only hope that Castellini has the ability to figure out that Beattie hasn't shown any real aptitude during his tenure as a GM. And yes, it concerns me that Beattie is tasked with assessing the pitching situation after he's been co-GM on an Orioles team that has finished in the MLB bottom ten the last two seasons.

Beyond the "Pitch to Contact" garbage, the "Take one Strike" directive (which has merit if implemented properly), team defense at the MLB level, and the starting rotation, Bob Castellini must figure out what he doesn't know how to fix and quickly find the person who'll be best suited to provide creative bold solutions. If that one thing does not happen, the rest are almost entirely moot.

In short, the biggest threat to that end is Bob Castellini's ability to, through introspection, understand the limitations of his own knowledge base coupled with his ability to trust those who can provide solutions Castellini himself may not entirely understand. If the reverse happens and Castellini surrounds himself only with what is familiar while attempting to micro-manage folks who are set on telling him what they know he wants to hear?

Well...let's just say that it takes longer to get rid of an Owner than it does a General Manager.

After listening to Castellini, I'm entirely open to the possibility that he'll be self-aware enough to choose the right course. If he does, he'll be a truly great leader. But then, truly great leaders are rare. So folks will have to excuse me if for being only cautiously optimistic.
Excellent post. The person Castellini hires as GM is critical obviously. One thing I do lie is that the new GM will not have to report through Allen, a guy who clearly knows nothing about building a winning ballteam.
I agree that "take one strike" has some merit if properly implemented. Ted Williams was selective as a hitter and didn't just go up to the plate hacking at anything close to the strikezone. While Teddy Ballgame would on occasion swing at the first pitch, he usually would wait and would only swing a pitch he could handle, strike or not, unless he already had two strikes on him.
For that matter, "pitch to contact" would make sense if it meant "throw strikes," but the idea should be "pitch to avoid contact." Reds pitchers are all too well able to make contact with opposing bats.

Ravenlord
01-24-2006, 08:11 AM
M2 and I have been screaming that for awhile. Rather than laughing you might want to argue some facts. None of which you will find from his performance at the end of the 03 and 04 season.
i agree. he's actually fairly comparable to Corey Patterson in center.

Redsland
01-24-2006, 09:29 AM
Ced, you state:

Pena is above average defensively in CF.
...without rhyme, reason, or -ahem- facts, and I'm the one who needs to bring them?

Please.

But since I'm a nice guy, here's a fact: Wily Mo Pena can't catch a baseball. "Above-average CFs" can.

Cedric
01-24-2006, 10:01 AM
So you can state something without anything to back it up and it's fine. I state it and it's "...without rhyme, reason, or -ahem- facts."

It's a personal opinion that the guy is above average defensively in CF. His ZR and his fielding percentage backs that up. Don't get mad because you just watched Wily Mo in RF and automatically assumed he wasn't good in CF because you clearly didn't watch him in CF.

If it's so funny then why are respected posters on this board agreeing in this very thread? Laughing at a lot of people then huh?

Redsland
01-24-2006, 11:19 AM
It's a personal opinion that the guy is above average defensively in CF...

If it's so funny then why are respected posters on this board agreeing in this very thread? Laughing at a lot of people then huh?
First of all, you never stated it was your opinion that WMP was above-average. You stated it as fact, when it is not, and failed to back it up, since you can't.

Furthermore, there are not "posters" and "a lot of people" agreeing with you that he's above-average. There is a single poster who compares him to Corey Patterson. Everyone else simply says he covers more ground than the alternatives, which is not in dispute.

"Can't catch" ≠ "above-average CF."

Ravenlord
01-24-2006, 11:24 AM
pick out the Wily Mo

ZR RF FPCT
891 2.22 986
866 3.05 985
880 2.81 991
864 2.45 991
870 2.48 989

RFS62
01-24-2006, 11:25 AM
What I've seen of Wily Mo is more like a circus in the outfield than a polished performer.

He takes terrible routes to the ball. Seems uncertain a lot of the time.

Maybe with more reps his pure talent and physical skills will carry him past what looks to me like major shortcomings in baseball IQ and instincts, I don't know.

But I can't imagine calling him a good centerfielder at this point in his career.

Redsland
01-24-2006, 11:36 AM
What I've seen of Wily Mo is more like a circus in the outfield than a polished performer.
The sound man should play "Thunder and Blazes" whenever a ball gets hit in his direction.

:party:

M2
01-24-2006, 11:46 AM
They need to fix the defense, particularly center field.

Somehow, some way they've got to move Pena or Kearns (preferably Pena) for a kid that can cover some ground out there. They won't be preventing many runs from the mound this season, so anything they can do to help the exasperatingly bad defense will be welcomed by me.

They also have to do something with that mess of infielders. They need to be sure to play the good ones, use the fast guy as a pinch runner, use the slow guy as a pinch hitter. If they gripe too much, show 'em the door because it won't kill them to eat those contracts. If I were Kullman, I'd be looking for a reason to bag those two DanO deadweights.

Great post. Saved me from having to do any typing on the subject.

letsgojunior
01-24-2006, 07:47 PM
We have several major holes that need to be addressed:

1) As other posters have mentioned, the defense is simply atrocious, and that's likely being generous. Dunn is transitioning to first for the first time in his career, Junior is old in centerfield, WMP is an adventure, Kearns has lot speed and range, Aurilia is, well, TimmAH, etc. There are few areas of strength that one can point to in this current defensive setup. Given our pitchers' propensity to give up hard hit balls, our defense will likely consistently give the opponents four outs, etc.

2) The pitching is obviously our gaping hole, with Gopherball Milton leading the pack. And it's no longer just the starting pitching either - our bullpen is a shadow of what it was during its heydey in the JimBo era. The combination of poor starting pitching and a bullpen constantly affected by performance/attrition/injury is just a huge detriment and is a weight that always pulls the team down.

3) The offense has potential but has several large question marks. Dunn has proven over the past 2 years that we can count on him for 900+ OPS, etc. However, I'd contend that it's very difficult to pin a number on anyone else. Lopez, WMP have the potential to put up big numbers, but the key word is of course potential. Junior is obviously always an injury risk, and I'm unsure about how Kearns will fare after what probably was the worst year of his professional life.

4) FO - Obviously a huge move getting rid of Dan O'Binder -pretty much anyone with a passing a knowledge of sports in general could have done a better job. I'd like to see a successor who appreciates both the sabermetric philosophy, as well as traditional scouting methods, and will run a tight ship.

I don't really think any of these major deficiencies can be corrected immediately, but I'm hopeful with Castellini at the helm that we'll start seeing positive moves in the foreseeable future.

wheels
01-24-2006, 11:29 PM
They've got a good piece of that defensive puzzle on hand in Edwin Encarnacion. When the light comes on for that guy in regards to his arm, he'll make Lopez's job easier and that side of the infield becomes almost as airtight as it was in 94 when Tony Fernandez and Barry Larkin were holding down the fort. I'm not sure about Dunn's ability to field grounders just yet, but he should be more rangy than Casey on flares and such to his side. He'll need to feel his way around a little bit, but the guy's logged a decent amount of time out there already, so the transition won't be as painful as we're wont to think. He should also provide a nice tall target, maybe enough to snag an errant Edwin Encarnacion throw here and there that Casey couldn't reach. As for Freel...Run that little sucker out there as much as possible, and if he gets gassed, I can deal with seeing Womack out there every four or five days....I guess.

This all hinges, of course on the willingness of whoever is in charge to deal with the growing pains of Edwin. This is going to be an important year for him, and I hope someone mandates that he gets the lion's share of the time out there. With Kullman at the riegns, I feel a lot more confident that it will happen.

But until something is done about the outfield range situation, and with a staff stocked to the gills with fly ball pitchers, expect lots of outs to be given away. There's nothing an improved infield can do about that.

wheels
01-24-2006, 11:30 PM
Great post. Saved me from having to do any typing on the subject.

Hey, I'm just happy to be here, coach.

ochre
01-24-2006, 11:30 PM
You need to stop telling people about Curtis Granderson or my fantasy baseball league is eventually going to get wind of it.

GAH! ;)
I'm pretty sure everybody just ignores me anyway :)

Nugget
01-24-2006, 11:43 PM
I think one of the things that is being missed in the CF debate (apart from all the figures being bandied about) is that whilst Junior is older and not able to cover as much territory as he once did he can still command his part of the field and run the outfielders. This is especially the case if the REDS are going to have the younger players out there which will be the case. CF is also the blend between the infield and the outfield which means that with the new infield defense we will need experience. CF is not the major threat area. 1B and the pitching are way before CF is. If the REDS are going to keep WMP then they really need to look at having him take special practice with fielding otherwise he is going to be better off traded.

cincinnati chili
01-24-2006, 11:47 PM
Is Tim Naehring a threat that needs to be assessed?

wheels
01-24-2006, 11:54 PM
Is Tim Naehring a threat that needs to be assessed?

Yes.

Emphatically yes.

Redsland
01-25-2006, 12:12 AM
I think one of the things that is being missed in the CF debate (apart from all the figures being bandied about) is that whilst Junior is older and not able to cover as much territory as he once did he can still command his part of the field and run the outfielders. This is especially the case if the REDS are going to have the younger players out there which will be the case. CF is also the blend between the infield and the outfield which means that with the new infield defense we will need experience. CF is not the major threat area. 1B and the pitching are way before CF is. If the REDS are going to keep WMP then they really need to look at having him take special practice with fielding otherwise he is going to be better off traded.
You lost me somewhere after your allusion to positioning, which can be handled from the dugout.

As regards WMP's fielding, it hasn't improved a lick in four major league seasons. He either can't catch or won't field, and I don't particularly care which is the case.

KronoRed
01-25-2006, 12:25 AM
I'm pretty sure everybody just ignores me anyway :)
IMO we should all begin to follow Mr.O's advice :devil: