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Ga_Red
02-21-2007, 02:11 AM
http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070220/SPT04/302200068/1071

BoydsOfSummer
02-21-2007, 02:49 AM
High hopes for Lohse
BY JOHN FAY | JFAY@ENQUIRER.COM

SARASOTA, Fla. – One of Reds manager Jerry Narron’s favorite subjects this spring has been Kyle Lohse.

“I think Kyle Lohse has a chance to have a breakout year," Narron said. “His stuff is as good as anybody’s we have. His changeup is outstanding.”

Consider this: Lohse throws harder and has more big league wins than either Bronson Arroyo or Aaron Harang.
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But Lohse is three seasons removed from having a winning record for an entire season.

“I’ve some good years and some not so good obviously,” Lohse said. “This would be a good time to put together than complete good year.”

Lohse was one of the players who came over in all last year’s wheeling and dealing by general manager Wayne Krivsky. The Reds got Lohse from Minnesota on July 31. The player they sent to the Twins, Zach Ward, was the best minor leaguer the Reds gave up in their plethora of trades.

That’s because Lohse had so much upside. He was in the big leagues at 22. He throws up to 94. And he’s only 28.

Lohse made 11 starts for the Reds. He was 3-5 with 4.50 ERA and twice was victim of blown saves.

Reds pitching coach Dick Pole first saw Lohse when Lohse broke into the big leagues. Pole was a coach with Cleveland.

“I saw him when first came up. I was very impressed with the stuff that he has,” Pole said. “He’s had some good years. He got into some kind of rut.”

But the stuff remained the same.

“Oh, yeah, he’s got great stuff,” Pole said.

The Reds are trying to limit the number of different pitches Lohse uses. He throws a fastball, changeup, slider and curve.

“His changeup is good enough that he’s one of those guys who could get away with two pitches,” Narron said.

Right now, the plan is go fastball-change-slider with an occasional curve mixed in.

“That’s our aim,” Pole said. “It kind of simplifies things.”

Lohse is all for it.

“Whatever they want to do, I’d going to try,” he said.

Lohse’s situation is much more settled this year. He’s going to be in rotation. With the Twins, he started and relieved last year – and spent time in the minors.

“All I want is a chance to compete every fifth day,’ he said. “It’s going to be good for me over here. It’s a nice little change.”

Things had soured a bit for Lohse in Minnesota. The Twins took him to arbitration each of the last two years. Lohse won.

“But that’s no fun,” he said. “Ask Wayne about it. It’s kind of ugly in there.”

Krivsky prepared Minnesota’s case as assistant GM there. This year, Lohse signed for $4.2 million on Jan. 7 - well before the case was scheduled to go to arbitration.

Lohse went 13-8 with a 4.23 ERA in 2002 and 14-11 with 4.61 in ’03. But he’s 23-36 with 5.01 ERA in the three years since.

Again, the Reds are banking that stuff plus maturity plus a defined role equals success.

“How old is he? 28?” Pole said. “That’s usually the time that guys like him get it figured out a little bit.”

The other factor is Lohse will be pitching in the National League from the start of the season Arroyo went from a 4.51 ERA with Boston in 2005 to 3.29 with the Reds in 2006.

“He’s learning a new league,” Pole said. “That American League is a little different than it is over here. That’s Arena Baseball over there. In this league, you got to take advantage of the eighth and ninth hitters. You can’t do that in the American League. They’re hitting .300 for crying out loud.”

Lohse thinks the key is consistency.

“I’ve had good months,” he said. “Then I have one that gets me off track. It be nice to go out and have a solid year.”

Ravenlord
02-21-2007, 04:51 AM
i don't know what it is, but watching Lohse pitch, his fastball is very straigtht. he slows his leg motion down about a half-second when throwing his curve/slider, and his change is also very straight. i really just don't see it at all from the scouting standpoint on Lohse.

jojo
02-21-2007, 07:49 AM
“I think Kyle Lohse has a chance to have a breakout year," Narron said.

It's spring training..... Narron has a pile of index cards in his jacket pocket each with a similar statement...

It just so happened he pulled this one out when talking about Lohse:

"I think (insert player name here) has a chance to have a breakout year".

Other guys he'll insert into the blank at some point in a conversation with reporters this spring training:

:dunn: :dunn: :griffey: :freel: :milton: :wilson: :harang: :coffey: :cruz: :valentin: :weathers: :ede: :castellini:

princeton
02-21-2007, 10:47 AM
if he throws a few breakout games, then trade him quickly

BRM
02-21-2007, 10:54 AM
if he throws a few breakout games, then trade him quickly

I'd like to see that but I seriously doubt Wayne trades him.

texasdave
02-21-2007, 10:55 AM
if he throws a few breakout games, then trade him quickly

If a team that needed starting pitching desperately wanted to trade me a young starting pitcher who was throwing 'breakout' games, I'd have to seriously wonder what they had up their sleeve.

remdog
02-21-2007, 10:59 AM
If a team that needed starting pitching desperately wanted to trade me a young starting pitcher who was throwing 'breakout' games, I'd have to seriously wonder what they had up their sleeve.

Dave:

What makes you think Wayne will be dealing with Bowdin anytime soon? :laugh:

Rem

Gainesville Red
02-21-2007, 11:18 AM
Pole said. “That American League is a little different than it is over here. That’s Arena Baseball over there.


That quote is awesome.

Joseph
02-21-2007, 11:21 AM
That’s Arena Baseball over there.

Love that analogy.

Spike
02-21-2007, 08:02 PM
Baseball can sometimes be cookie-cutter. Lohse fits the breakout year formula. Maybe Lohse lacks psyche to pull it off, but if you are playing the odds, I like them. Give it all a chance. At this stage, we need a little calculated luck! Lohse has the talent, maybe the preformance will follow.

jojo
02-21-2007, 08:07 PM
Baseball can sometimes be cookie-cutter. Lohse fits the breakout year formula. Maybe Lohse lacks psyche to pull it off, but if you are playing the odds, I like them. Give it all a chance. At this stage, we need a little calculated luck! Lohse has the talent, maybe the preformance will follow.

Boone Logan and Hayden Penn fit the *breakout year formula*.....Lohse fits the *potentially useful* formula....

Spike
02-21-2007, 08:11 PM
Boone Logan and Hayden Penn fit the *breakout year formula*.....Lohse fits the *potentially useful* formula....

Sorry. Hayden Penn and Boone Logan fit the breakout Prospect formula. They are 22! Breakout years usually infer living up to potential.

vaticanplum
02-21-2007, 08:18 PM
Love that analogy.

Best. quote work. ever.

jojo
02-21-2007, 08:26 PM
Sorry. Hayden Penn and Boone Logan fit the breakout Prospect formula. They are 22! Breakout years usually infer living up to potential.

Maybe by your definition. Breakout year implies going from good to great... Lohse of course has never been good and the hope is he basically is league average next year....

Spike
02-21-2007, 08:32 PM
Maybe by your definition. Breakout year implies going from good to great... Lohse of course has never been good and the hope is he basically is league average next year....

How about 12 Wins and a 3.95 ERA? Breakout or no? If yes, I will contribute $10.00 to the United Way if he doesn't. (Moderators, this is charity, not gambling...)

jojo
02-21-2007, 08:47 PM
How about 12 Wins and a 3.95 ERA? Breakout or no? If yes, I will contribute $10.00 to the United Way if he doesn't. (Moderators, this is charity, not gambling...)


Why choose those metrics for a pitcher?

How about an xFIP of 3.95 over 200 IP....

Falls City Beer
02-21-2007, 08:54 PM
Brett Tomko.

edabbs44
02-21-2007, 09:14 PM
Lohse will be pitching mop up games by June.

Spike
02-21-2007, 09:24 PM
Brett Tomko.

Johnny Bench.

(Are we picking our favorite players, or are you referring to Tomko's 2004 season?)
Year Team INN GS W L S K BBI HA ERA
2004 SF 194.0 31 11 7 0 108 64 196 4.036

He was 31. Gut feeling? Not the same!

Nobody seems to be going for the $10.00 bet (I mean contribution...)

Redmachine2003
02-21-2007, 09:42 PM
Milton and Loshe are set for breakout years because it is show me the money years which could be a very good thing for the Reds

edabbs44
02-21-2007, 09:43 PM
Johnny Bench.

(Are we picking our favorite players, or are you referring to Tomko's 2004 season?)
Year Team INN GS W L S K BBI HA ERA
2004 SF 194.0 31 11 7 0 108 64 196 4.036

He was 31. Gut feeling? Not the same!

Nobody seems to be going for the $10.00 bet (I mean contribution...)

I wish Vegas would give me that O/U.

Candy Cummings
02-21-2007, 10:32 PM
It isn't age, but Lohse has a few too many miles under the tires to be expected to suddenly turn into something really good. Could he go 12 wins and 3.95? I suppose, but that's not what a breakout means.

Perhaps a dumb question--with his stuff, could he close?

Razor Shines
02-21-2007, 10:48 PM
It isn't age, but Lohse has a few too many miles under the tires to be expected to suddenly turn into something really good. Could he go 12 wins and 3.95? I suppose, but that's not what a breakout means.

Perhaps a dumb question--with his stuff, could he close?

It's not that ridiculous. Carpenter had almost 900 innings in the AL before he went to the Cards and "broke out". And was about the same age as Loshe. He had some pretty bad seasons in the AL too. Now I don't really expect Loshe to perform anywhere near Carp, but I don't think it's because he has "too many miles under the tires", unless you're talking about actual miles on real tires. In that case you could be right.

Candy Cummings
02-21-2007, 10:54 PM
We'll see. I hope he does break out. Note: I didn't say it was ridiculous.

Falls City Beer
02-21-2007, 11:08 PM
Carpenter was always hampered by injury; Lohse has no such excuse. Just like Tomko. Their careers (Tomko's and Lohse's) are eerily similar.

Really, a solid argument could be made that Tomko's had the better career.

D-Man
02-21-2007, 11:26 PM
Carpenter was always hampered by injury; Lohse has no such excuse. Just like Tomko. Their careers (Tomko's and Lohse's) are eerily similar.

Really, a solid argument could be made that Tomko's had the better career.

Key difference is that Lohse's performance has been manic, whereas Tomko just didn't have the mental concentration to get through six frames. Lohse can get through six frames some days, but just can't do it every fifth day consistently.

I think a more interesting comp for Lohse is Matt Clement. They both have great stuff, had complete lack of control in the early years, had good physical health through their mid-20s. . . but it just takes a change of scenery and a long, long time to put it all together (if ever, for Lohse).

Redmachine2003 is right--this is payday year, so Lohse is a good breakout candidate.

Razor Shines
02-21-2007, 11:31 PM
Key difference is that Lohse's performance has been manic, whereas Tomko just didn't have the mental concentration to get through six frames. Lohse can get through six frames some days, but just can't do it every fifth day consistently.

I think a more interesting comp for Lohse is Matt Clement. They both have great stuff, had complete lack of control in the early years, had good physical health through their mid-20s. . . but it just takes a change of scenery and a long, long time to put it all together (if ever, for Lohse).

Redmachine2003 is right--this is payday year, so Lohse is a good breakout candidate.

It seems to me that Lohse will be going along fine and then he'll have an inning where it seems like he forgets that he's pitching, or atleast that there's a batter at the plate.

Spike
02-22-2007, 12:22 AM
It isn't age, but Lohse has a few too many miles under the tires to be expected to suddenly turn into something really good. Could he go 12 wins and 3.95? I suppose, but that's not what a breakout means.

Perhaps a dumb question--with his stuff, could he close?

Could he go 12 wins and 3.95? I suppose, but that's not what a breakout means

New Angle. What does a breakout mean? (Let's take the top 5 at any postion out of the equation. There are your Pujols and Santanas. What does a breakout mean beyond the superstar level?)

Chip R
02-22-2007, 12:33 AM
if he throws a few breakout games, then trade him quickly


Great idea. Will never, ever happen though. If he pitches well here, they won't want to get rid of him. They might even sign him to a long term deal. The Reds have been - and are - so pitching hungry that they will hang on to anyone who pitches well.

Falls City Beer
02-22-2007, 09:03 AM
Key difference is that Lohse's performance has been manic, whereas Tomko just didn't have the mental concentration to get through six frames. Lohse can get through six frames some days, but just can't do it every fifth day consistently.

I think a more interesting comp for Lohse is Matt Clement. They both have great stuff, had complete lack of control in the early years, had good physical health through their mid-20s. . . but it just takes a change of scenery and a long, long time to put it all together (if ever, for Lohse).

Redmachine2003 is right--this is payday year, so Lohse is a good breakout candidate.

Clement was a good pitcher for a long time and a very good pitcher for a short time. Lohse has never been a good pitcher--only respectable in fits and starts; just like Tomko. That's a pretty important difference.

RANDY IN INDY
02-22-2007, 09:19 AM
Could he go 12 wins and 3.95? I suppose, but that's not what a breakout means

New Angle. What does a breakout mean? (Let's take the top 5 at any postion out of the equation. There are your Pujols and Santanas. What does a breakout mean beyond the superstar level?)

I think the ridiculous signings over the winter can answer that question to a degree. Breakout ain't what it used to be.

edabbs44
02-22-2007, 09:24 AM
12 wins and a 3.95 era would probably be a breakout for Lohse. Any pitcher cutting his ERA almost in half in one year would be a breakout.

redsfan30
02-22-2007, 10:35 AM
Milton and Loshe are set for breakout years because it is show me the money years which could be a very good thing for the Reds

This is a fact that I think gets overlooked quite a bit. It's a contract year for both of them, therefore I wouldn't be surprised to see them both have as good a year this year as they've had in a long time.

BRM
02-22-2007, 12:22 PM
The last time Milton was in a contract year he threw up a 4.75 ERA while giving up 43 bombs. He also had an OPSA of .810.

redsfan30
02-22-2007, 12:28 PM
The last time Milton was in a contract year he threw up a 4.75 ERA while giving up 43 bombs. He also had an OPSA of .810.

I think then there was enough of an interest in him that he was able to get away with it.

This time around, there will be little to no interest in him if he puts up another stinker of a year.

BRM
02-22-2007, 12:34 PM
I think then there was enough of an interest in him that he was able to get away with it.

This time around, there will be little to no interest in him if he puts up another stinker of a year.

If he puts up a below 5.00 ERA this summer, he'll have some teams willing to give him another contract. I just hope the Reds won't be one of them. The point I was making is that I have no confidence in his ability to have a "breakout" year. I'm expecting an ERA around 5.00 with 35-40 homers allowed and an OPSA of .800 or worse.

Candy Cummings
02-22-2007, 12:57 PM
Is there any evidence players do better in their contract years? There might be, I'm just curious. It seems rational to an extent, but at the same time, how much impact can Eric Milton have on his performance if he doesn't have the stuff.

BRM
02-22-2007, 01:12 PM
Is there any evidence players do better in their contract years? There might be, I'm just curious. It seems rational to an extent, but at the same time, how much impact can Eric Milton have on his performance if he doesn't have the stuff.

In Milton's case, there is proof that he doesn't perform any better in a contract year. Of course, we only have one season to go on, 2004.

Johnny Footstool
02-22-2007, 01:17 PM
i don't know what it is, but watching Lohse pitch, his fastball is very straigtht. he slows his leg motion down about a half-second when throwing his curve/slider, and his change is also very straight. i really just don't see it at all from the scouting standpoint on Lohse.

If you can see those things, big leaguers can see them, too.

That might explain why his K/9 dropped steadily from 2001 until 2005.

For someone with "great stuff", Lohse never really struck out hitters at an impressive rate. He was decent when he came to the majors, but has fallen into mediocrity at a steady rate.

Puffy
02-22-2007, 01:22 PM
Is there any evidence players do better in their contract years? There might be, I'm just curious. It seems rational to an extent, but at the same time, how much impact can Eric Milton have on his performance if he doesn't have the stuff.

No - there's none. A few people have career years in their contract year (Adrian Beltre, Jaret Wright) and now people think its a given and baseball players can just turn it up a notch in walk years.

D-Man
02-22-2007, 10:09 PM
Clement was a good pitcher for a long time and a very good pitcher for a short time. Lohse has never been a good pitcher--only respectable in fits and starts; just like Tomko. That's a pretty important difference.

Clement had an ERA+ of 88 (i.e., a below average pitcher) from 1999-2001. And he pitched in two pitchers parks (SD and FLA). Not sure he would qualify as a "good pitcher for a long time" in my book.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/c/clemema01.shtml

Lohse's Career ERA+: 94
Clement's Career ERA+: 96 (and that includes his great years)

Falls City Beer
02-22-2007, 10:51 PM
Clement had an ERA+ of 88 (i.e., a below average pitcher) from 1999-2001. And he pitched in two pitchers parks (SD and FLA). Not sure he would qualify as a "good pitcher for a long time" in my book.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/c/clemema01.shtml

Lohse's Career ERA+: 94
Clement's Career ERA+: 96 (and that includes his great years)

Reducing players to ERA+ is pretty limiting, particularly when you're talking about a pitcher's career. Lohse has done nothing that even approaches Clement's good/very good Chicago seasons. And his stuff, K rate, OPSA don't portend a turnaround (particularly in GAB). Plus, he's not a very bright person, either, and that matters.

I think a better comparison to Lohse would be Jimmy Haynes.