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Ga_Red
02-23-2007, 11:36 AM
http://frontier.cincinnati.com/blogs/spring/

BRM
02-23-2007, 11:37 AM
Here's the part about Votto.


Yesterday Jerry Narron was really impressed with Joey Votto:
"I know this, he was impressive (Thursday) in that live BP. He was hitting off of Brian Meadows and I believe he hit the ball out of the ballpark everywhere — left, right, center, everywhere. That’s just batting practice, but to be able to hit the ball the other way out of the ballpark shows you he has the ability to hit a little bit."

redsmetz
02-23-2007, 11:50 AM
On the blog, he talks about the stories he's doing for tomorrow, including one about David Ross. He quotes Jerry Narron about Ross catching Harrang and how good Harrang is. Narron recalled his own past


"Aaron Harang is good enough that I should be able to catch him. It goes back to the first time I caught Catfish Hunter. He said, ‘I’m going to throw every pitch you call for and if I don’t like it, I’ll throw it so they can’t hit it.’ Aaron Harang has that kind of stuff."

RichRed
02-23-2007, 01:01 PM
Here's the part about Votto.


Yesterday Jerry Narron was really impressed with Joey Votto:
"I know this, he was impressive (Thursday) in that live BP. He was hitting off of Brian Meadows and I believe he hit the ball out of the ballpark everywhere — left, right, center, everywhere. That’s just batting practice, but to be able to hit the ball the other way out of the ballpark shows you he has the ability to hit a little bit."


I hope this is more of an indicator of Votto's ability than it is of Meadows'.

;)

RANDY IN INDY
02-23-2007, 01:23 PM
Let's hope he impresses enough to make one of Hatteberg and Conine expendable at some point this season. I really think that Hatteberg could bring something at the trade deadline.

membengal
02-23-2007, 01:36 PM
I am really loving what Trent Rosencrans is bringing to the blog, exactly the kind of "this is what I'm seeing" stuff that desperate fans like, well, pretty much all of us, live for.

His latest snippet is on Homer Bailey:

All I know is this, I don't want to have to face Homer Bailey.

I was just standing in the cage watching the Reds' prized prospect throw live batting practice and the first pitch I stood in there for was a fastball than ran in on Alex Gonzalez. Not only did Gonzalez jump, so did I -- twice. First from the ball being to close for my comfort (even with the cage between us) and then from the sound it made after hitting Chad Moeller's mitt.

I wasn't there for all of Homer's session, but the bit I was there for, not too much was being hit.


Mmmm, tasty.

membengal
02-23-2007, 01:44 PM
Fwiw, I am not sure why this was moved to the minors section. It's likely Votto ends up in AAA, but he is also vying for a spot in the majors this spring, as is Bailey. Why isn't that in general chatter?

lollipopcurve
02-23-2007, 01:48 PM
In my opinion, Votto is underrated.

bucksfan2
02-23-2007, 01:52 PM
I have a feeling that Votto will play well enough this spring to make the team but the reds will send him down to AAA because they have two veteran players slotted in at 1b. And we all know how much Narron loves his veterans.

membengal
02-23-2007, 01:55 PM
I agree bucksfan, but until that happens, it seems like that is "Reds talk", not "minors talk".

redsmetz
02-23-2007, 02:03 PM
I have a feeling that Votto will play well enough this spring to make the team but the reds will send him down to AAA because they have two veteran players slotted in at 1b. And we all know how much Narron loves his veterans.

I think it's highly likely that he too starts in Louisville just like Homer. Again, I think this is this regime's philosophy - step by step. I do agree with the earlier poster who thought maybe Votto will be up this year and the Reds move either Conine and Hatteberg. I this they're right that Hat has the higher ceiling and can bring something in a trade. I'm fine with Conine as a back up/mentor for Votto if that happens.

Aronchis
02-23-2007, 02:17 PM
I am really loving what Trent Rosencrans is bringing to the blog, exactly the kind of "this is what I'm seeing" stuff that desperate fans like, well, pretty much all of us, live for.

His latest snippet is on Homer Bailey:

All I know is this, I don't want to have to face Homer Bailey.

I was just standing in the cage watching the Reds' prized prospect throw live batting practice and the first pitch I stood in there for was a fastball than ran in on Alex Gonzalez. Not only did Gonzalez jump, so did I -- twice. First from the ball being to close for my comfort (even with the cage between us) and then from the sound it made after hitting Chad Moeller's mitt.

I wasn't there for all of Homer's session, but the bit I was there for, not too much was being hit.


Mmmm, tasty.

The only good part I am reading here is that Bailey's arm isn't injured........................................... .................. yet;) :mooner:

Highlifeman21
02-23-2007, 02:44 PM
"I know this, he was impressive (Thursday) in that live BP. He was hitting off of Brian Meadows and I believe he hit the ball out of the ballpark everywhere — left, right, center, everywhere. That’s just batting practice, but to be able to hit the ball the other way out of the ballpark shows you he has the ability to hit a little bit."

Most of us would have similar success vs. Brian Meadows

Triples
02-23-2007, 02:58 PM
Most of us would have similar success vs. Brian Meadows

See...now there is a perfect example of why we should be careful about how we criticize the players. If any of us could hit anything off Brian Meadows, let along numerous dingers, we wouldn't be sitting here debating it, we'd be on the field in Sarasota.:duel:

5DOLLAR-BLEACHERBUM
02-23-2007, 03:08 PM
The only good part I am reading here is that Bailey's arm isn't injured........................................... .................. yet;) :mooner:
You lost me on this one, are you wanting Homer to get hurt. Im not aware of him having an injury history up to this point so im guessing this is just.....well I don't know what this is.:thumbdown

5DOLLAR-BLEACHERBUM
02-23-2007, 03:18 PM
See...now there is a perfect example of why we should be careful about how we criticize the players. If any of us could hit anything off Brian Meadows, let along numerous dingers, we wouldn't be sitting here debating it, we'd be on the field in Sarasota.:duel:
I don't know, anyone who has done enough scouting on a guy like Meadows to know whether all of us here at RZ can hit him or not has to be taken seriously in my book. On the other hand if he hasn't scouted him then he is just farting a negative comment that's uncalled for, i mean what has Votto done that would warrant down play of his batting practice.

membengal
02-23-2007, 03:19 PM
Aronchis is a firm believer that young arms will eventually get hurt. So I read that statement from him to mean that he is glad Bailey isn't hurt, but that he still expects him to be at some point.

5DOLLAR-BLEACHERBUM
02-23-2007, 03:22 PM
Aronchis is a firm believer that young arms will eventually get hurt. So I read that statement from him to mean that he is glad Bailey isn't hurt, but that he still expects him to be at some point.
Ok, I guess. If im not mistaken every major league pitcher was a young arm at some point. There are many pitcher's in the bigs who have been arm injury free. I am a firm believer that old arms will eventually get hurt.

Triples
02-23-2007, 03:32 PM
I don't know, anyone who has done enough scouting on a guy like Meadows to know whether all of us here at RZ can hit him or not has to be taken seriously in my book. On the other hand if he hasn't scouted him then he is just farting a negative comment that's uncalled for, i mean what has Votto done that would warrant down play of his batting practice.

I can't tell if the jab is at Meadows or Votto...maybe both. its just a bad way to make a point. Scouting ability or otherwise, ain't no one on this board with the ability to hit even A ball pitching.

membengal
02-23-2007, 03:32 PM
Hey, I'm with you. Aronchis can certainly speak for himself on that, that's just my take on his many posts along these lines in these parts.

Fwiw, you bring Bailey along, you nurture him as best you can, you challenge him, and you hope that he is one of those special talents that seems to be built to take the stress of pitching without getting hurt. They are few and far between, but if you luck into one, they are precious as it comes.

11larkin11
02-23-2007, 04:04 PM
The Good -I wasn't there for all of Homer's session, but the bit I was there for, not too much was being hit.

The Bad- Not only did Gonzalez jump

and The Ugly- hitting Chad Moeller's mitt

OnBaseMachine
02-23-2007, 06:09 PM
In my opinion, Votto is underrated.

I agree 100% with this comment. Votto is very underrated IMO. A lot of folks seemed to give up on him after having a disappointing season in the pitcher friendly FSL league in 2005. Not me, I understood the circumstances. The FSL is an extreme pitcher's league, plus Votto was constantly behind in the count 0-1 due to Dan O'Brien's take the first mantra. It's very hard to put up impressive numbers under those circumstances.

I believe the 2006 Joey Votto was more of the real Votto. I think he'll become a very good major league, something along the lines of a .285/.375/.525 type of hitter, which would put him in the upper echelon of major league first baseman.

dougdirt
02-23-2007, 07:22 PM
I am with you guys on Votto. Take a look at 2004. Take a look at 2006. Right in the middle something looks WAY out of line. Obviously, I am with OBM 100% on what happened last year. Good luck getting something to hit when every pitcher in the leagues know you are looking on the first pitch. Why would you let him get something to hit when you are ahead in the count? I know as a former pitcher I am not throwing anything close to the middle of the plate if I am ahead in the count. I think Votto suffered a lot from that. Even he said so, and I am paraphrasing now "When Justin Verlander knows you cant swing at the first pitch he is throwing a strike. After he gets up 0-1 on you, good luck."
Like I stated before take a look at what he did at age 20 and last year at age 22 and tell me he doesnt project to be quite good.


Year Team Age Level AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG OPS
2004 Dayton 20 A 391 60 118 26 2 14 72 79 110 .302 .419 .486 905
Potomac 20 A+ 84 11 25 7 0 5 20 11 21 .298 .385 .560 945
2006 Chattga 22 AA 508 85 162 46 2 22 77 78 109 .319 .408 .547 955

mth123
02-23-2007, 07:35 PM
I agree 100% with this comment. Votto is very underrated IMO. A lot of folks seemed to give up on him after having a disappointing season in the pitcher friendly FSL league in 2005. Not me, I understood the circumstances. The FSL is an extreme pitcher's league, plus Votto was constantly behind in the count 0-1 due to Dan O'Brien's take the first mantra. It's very hard to put up impressive numbers under those circumstances.

I believe the 2006 Joey Votto was more of the real Votto. I think he'll become a very good major league, something along the lines of a .285/.375/.525 type of hitter, which would put him in the upper echelon of major league first baseman.

Me too. I said early in the off-season that the best way for the Reds to fix the offense would be for Votto to get th 1B job unless he completely tanks. He would add power to the line-up and put Hatte on the bench which would give the Reds a legit late inning PH option.

I also agree with those who say he's destined for AAA no matter how he does. It will take a DL stint from Hatte to see Votto before July IMO.

Ga_Red
02-23-2007, 09:34 PM
http://www.daytondailynews.com/s/content/oh/story/sports/pro/reds/2007/02/23/ddn022307redsweb.html

OnBaseMachine
02-23-2007, 10:09 PM
Votto impressive at plate
Click-2-Listen
By Hal McCoy

Staff Writer

Saturday, February 24, 2007

SARASOTA, Fla. — Joey Votto's eyes lit up almost as brightly as manager Jerry Narron's eyes lit up on the first day of live batting practice for the Cincinnati Reds.

Narron watched Votto take batting practice and saw baseball after baseball flying over the outfield fences. Left field, center field, right field. Didn't matter. Baseball kept clearing the fences.

"He was impressive," said Narron. "Against Brian Meadows, he hit the ball out of the park everywhere — left, right and center. That's just batting practice, but to be able to hit the ball out of the park the other way shows he has a chance to be a very good big-league player."

Votto, 23 and the Reds' No. 2 draft choice in 2002, smile broadly as he laced up his shoes for Friday's workout and listened to what Narron said.

"Was he impressed?" Votto asked. "It is nice that my hard work and concentration during batting practice was noticed. During the season, everybody is busy, scouts are busy, everybody is preparing for the playoffs in September."

Votto was in spring training last year, too, but was a shadow in a corner.

"I didn't get many at-bats last spring (eight), but I know this year I have an opportunity to give myself a better shot," he said.

That's mostly because the Canadian-born first baseman made himself noticed at Class AA Chattanooga, hitting .319 to lead the league, sprinkling in a league-leading 46 doubles, along with 22 homers and 77 RBIs, plus a league-leading 78 walks.

It was evident Narron was paying attention. While Votto was ripping apart the Southern League with his bat, he received a call from Narron.

"I told him to work as much on his defense as he does on his offense and my understanding is that he is," said Narron.

Votto began his professional career as a catcher, but former general manager Jim Bowden switched him to first base. For that, Votto thinks about sending Bowden candy and flowers every week.

"I've played shortstop, third base and outfield in rookie ball, but I was catching in the minors and I couldn't stand catching," he said. "I was miserable. I'd catch bullpens and later I felt bad for the pitchers because I didn't realize until I got older how important bullpen sessions were for the pitchers. I was young and didn't care. I was 18 and it was the worst and I couldn't stand it, going crazy, getting sore legs."

Since abandoning the catcher's gear, Votto realizes even more how tough the position is and said, "I'll do anything but catch. That takes a special person. And a crazy person."

Votto spent parts of two seasons with the Class A Dayton Dragons, hitting .302 in 111 games in 2004 with 14 homers and 72 RBIs.

"I liked Dayton a lot and those people are the best people I've met in baseball," he said. "The fan base is great and I've made friends with whom I still e-mail. Dayton is a great town. City or town?"

Cincinnati, though, is the city he has in mind for 2007.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/s/content/oh/story/sports/pro/reds/2007/02/23/ddn022307redsweb.html

edabbs44
02-23-2007, 10:39 PM
Let's hope he impresses enough to make one of Hatteberg and Conine expendable at some point this season. I really think that Hatteberg could bring something at the trade deadline.

Barring an injury to a contender's first baseman, I don't think that Hatte would bring anything except a savings of a few hundred thousand at the deadline.

Topcat
02-24-2007, 06:37 AM
I have a feeling that Votto will play well enough this spring to make the team but the reds will send him down to AAA because they have two veteran players slotted in at 1b. And we all know how much Narron loves his veterans.

A side note on your thought is this. Maybe the Red's are holding back the free agency clock on him till they actually get full time production from him.

OnBaseMachine
02-24-2007, 09:54 AM
Votto in same boat as Bailey
Reds won't rush slugging prospect
BY JOHN FAY | JFAY@ENQUIRER.COM

SARASOTA, Fla. - Joey Votto did not have the statement typed out. But he had it rehearsed.

He knew sooner or later a reporter was going to ask him about his chances of making the Reds out of spring training.

"I told myself what I wanted to say if you guys asked me," he said. "My wording was: 'I want to put myself in the best position to succeed and open people's eyes. But also, if I don't make it, when they call (someone up), I want to be the first person they think of.' "

That's pretty much a lock.

Votto, a 23-year-old first baseman, arguably had the best year of any Reds minor-leaguer - including prized pitching prospect Homer Bailey.

Votto led the Southern League in hitting (.319), runs (85), hits (162), doubles (46), walks (78), on-base (.408) and slugging (.547). He was second in homers (22) and third in RBI (77).

"The way he swung the bat yesterday, I can see why he put up those numbers," Reds manager Jerry Narron said.

Narron said that after seeing Votto take right-hander Brian Meadows out to all fields in live batting practice.

"Any time you've got a young guy who uses all fields, he's got a chance to be successful," Narron said.

Votto is the Bailey of position players - you could make a case that he's ready now, but the Reds are going to be patient with him.

When the Reds signed Scott Hatteberg to a contract extension July 26, it guaranteed Votto a stint in Triple-A.

"(But) I don't think that had anything to do with me," Votto said. "(Hatteberg) deserved every bit of it."

Votto was the Reds' No. 2 pick in the 2002 draft.

He grew up in Toronto - where the high school season lasts about two weeks - so he was a little raw when he signed.

He quickly emerged as a top prospect. In 2004, he combined to hit .301 with 19 home runs and 92 RBI at Dayton and Potomac.

But in 2005, Votto struggled at Single-A Sarasota. He hit .256 with 17 homers and 83 RBI - not bad, but not a step forward.

Votto blames it on the rules then-GM Dan O'Brien mandated for minor-league hitters. All hitters had to take a strike before swinging.

"As a baseball player, I like to have it in my own hands," he said. "I know a lot of these guys do. I felt like they were trying to take my game away from me.

"It was almost like a personal attack. It was something everyone had to deal with. It was a struggle for all of us."

Votto is thoughtful and a student of hitting. He knows Ted Williams' "Science of Hitting" almost by heart, so telling him to hit a certain way was an affront to his hard work.

"I just had a hard time with it," he said. "I felt almost like an artist: Someone was trying to take away my creative control."

The key for Votto getting to the big leagues is showing he can do more than hit and run (he stole 24 bases last year). His defense has been the question.

"One thing I did last summer was call him and ask him to work as much on his defense as he does on his offense," Narron said. "My understanding is he's been working hard defensively."

Votto says he's getting there.

"I think there's always something you can improve on," he said. "Defense is important to this organization now. I think I've made big strides. I think my defense has really caught up. I trust myself and my teammates trust me to play every day out there."

Eventually, he probably will be playing every day for the Reds.

"If he keeps on improving and making adjustments, he's got a chance to be a good major-league player," Narron said.

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070224/SPT04/702240369/1071/SPT

dougdirt
02-24-2007, 10:32 AM
Votto blames it on the rules then-GM Dan O'Brien mandated for minor-league hitters. All hitters had to take a strike before swinging.

"As a baseball player, I like to have it in my own hands," he said. "I know a lot of these guys do. I felt like they were trying to take my game away from me.

"It was almost like a personal attack. It was something everyone had to deal with. It was a struggle for all of us."


I just wanted to make sure people read that part of the article.