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View Full Version : Voices in my Head: Young Reds Hitters



RedEye
06-14-2006, 04:14 PM
Okay, so I've once again been of two minds lately about my beloved Cincinnati Reds. On some days, I get excited about their young nucleus of offensive talent (Dunn, Kearns, Lopez, Phillips, Encaracion) and on others I can't stand them. I've tried to represent these two voices as accurately as possible below. I'd like to emphasize that my own opinion probably lies somewhere between these two points of view:

Voice #1:
Don't get too excited. The young talent the Reds have right now is good, but we need to maintain perspective on their potential. Major league hitters, history shows, will usually display a 'plateau' in their abilities, and further discussion of what a player 'might do' with more experience is often futile. A player, in most cases, is what he is after a few time around the league. Dunn, for example, looks to be a .240 to .260 hitter with plenty of pop and lots of walks. But don't look for him to ratchet those stats up a notch. He may have a career year where he puts up 50 and .265 with a few more RBI's, but the numbers we see now are the numbers to expect. Likewise, Kearns has shown that he is consistently inconsistent; that he is capable of major league at-bats, but that he doesn't have the gumption to keep healthy and focused long enough to be the ML RBI leader we envisioned pre-Ray King. Phillips, Lopez and Encarnacion are perhaps less-known quantities, as all three still seem to be in the process of 'figuring it out'. But don't bet on any of them.

Voice #2:
These players, if all goes right, are the makings of a Little Red Machine. Dunn is just reaching his prime and already has a HR pace fit for a champion. His monster OBP and OPS more than make up for his paltry BA, and if he advances one more step, we could have a 50-120 monster on our hands. Kearns shows the intangibles to be a solid Kevin McReynolds-type player for the next 10 years, probably with several All-Star appearnces in the mix. Lopez, Phillips and Encarnacion have the talent to form the best offensive infield in the National League. Lopez, the most 'advanced' of the three, is already one of the better hitting SS in the game. Phillips shows all the signs of becoming a Roberto Alomar-type anchor, and Encarnacion, despite his defensive lapses, really has the look of a natural talent. The next few years will be exciting to watch, as these five young players learn to play together. Remember 1990, when the Crown Jewels finally put it all together. There are good years ahead in Cincinnati!

What do you all think?

RedEye
06-14-2006, 07:34 PM
Hmmm... good thing I've got two voices since no one else seems interested!

pedro
06-14-2006, 07:43 PM
Hmmm... good thing I've got two voices since no one else seems interested!

I think the truth is somewhere in betwen you're two voices RedEye.

FWIW, I am more excited about the future of Dunn and Encarnacion than I am Lopez and Kearns.

KronoRed
06-14-2006, 08:07 PM
I try not to admit out loud I hear voices

:evil:

Heath
06-14-2006, 08:15 PM
I think the truth is somewhere in betwen you're two voices RedEye.

He'll end up looking like this guy.....

http://img.epinions.com/images/opti/82/66/Hasbro_Monsters_Inc_Wise_Crackin_Mike_Toys-resized200.jpg

RedEye
06-15-2006, 12:58 PM
Whoops... I guess the voices scared everybody off. I'll try again soon...

savafan
06-15-2006, 01:07 PM
Whoops... I guess the voices scared everybody off. I'll try again soon...

Nah, don't give up, I think it was an interesting post. Remember, a lot of posters are probably at work right now. :)

gm
06-15-2006, 02:08 PM
Winnie the Pooh: "I asked myself, what if..."

Piglet: "And how did you answer yourself?"

TRF
06-15-2006, 02:18 PM
I think the truth is somewhere in betwen you're two voices RedEye.

FWIW, I am more excited about the future of Dunn and Encarnacion than I am Lopez and Kearns.

Funny, cuz I'm more excited about Lopez' future than EE's

I just need Lopez to do two things:

Quit switch hitting. He stinks from the right side.
Get his head in the game defensively a bit more.I think he's starting to scratch his offensive upside potential. He's about a year or two away from a 30/30 season IMO. He gets on base, he a good percentage base stealer, he's got some pop in his bat.

EE reminds me a lot of Willie Greene sometimes. Same gigantic upside, but he looks bored out there at times.

RedEye
06-15-2006, 02:49 PM
Thanks for the pep talk, savafan. I kind of forgot that some people have real jobs. As a graduate student, I sometimes take my free schedule for granted...

pedro
06-15-2006, 03:25 PM
Funny, cuz I'm more excited about Lopez' future than EE's

I just need Lopez to do two things:

Quit switch hitting. He stinks from the right side.
Get his head in the game defensively a bit more.I think he's starting to scratch his offensive upside potential. He's about a year or two away from a 30/30 season IMO. He gets on base, he a good percentage base stealer, he's got some pop in his bat.

EE reminds me a lot of Willie Greene sometimes. Same gigantic upside, but he looks bored out there at times.

I'm basing my opinion on the fact that EE is putting up comparable, if not better, numbers than felipe at a younger age, because I believe EE projects to be a better defender , and because I think EE will develop much more power than lopez.

TRF
06-15-2006, 03:35 PM
I also think EE's power potential is greater, But Lopez isn't exactly a slouch power-wise, and 25-30 HR's a season isn't unrealistic. Add to that his speed, and I think he's a special player.

pedro
06-15-2006, 04:08 PM
I also think EE's power potential is greater, But Lopez isn't exactly a slouch power-wise, and 25-30 HR's a season isn't unrealistic. Add to that his speed, and I think he's a special player.


I'm worried that last years power was an anomoly. His slugging % this year has not been good and it is more in line with his career numbers than last year was.

RedEye
06-15-2006, 04:23 PM
Perhaps EE's long-term offensive potential is more like a Michael Cuddyer or a Corey Koskie than it is like an Aramis Ramirez? That's bad news if his defense never picks up...

RedEye
06-15-2006, 04:24 PM
What about Phillips? I've seen nothing from him to contradict the predictions that said he would be the centerpiece of the Indians for years to come. He's not going to hit 30 HR, but I could easily see a 20-100-20-.300 year on the way soon. Pretty good for a 2B, no?

pedro
06-15-2006, 04:30 PM
Perhaps EE's long-term offensive potential is more like a Michael Cuddyer or a Corey Koskie than it is like an Aramis Ramirez? That's bad news if his defense never picks up...

Koskie has had a pretty respectable career and both he and Cuddyer are having pretty good seasons this year. Either way, I honestly think EE will have a better career than either of them.

Ramirez is a bit of an enigma IMO because he's so wildly inconsistent.