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flyer85
03-19-2007, 01:58 PM
joke.

HE has never spent one full season as a closer. Has back problems that were not fixed, is closing in on 35 and has a fastball that tops out at about 85-86.

Making him the closer is a surefire recipe for failure. His 2005 was driven by an fluky BABIP, he didn't miss bats and yet ... I'll stop there.


Reds closer to having a closer
Healthy Hermanson an appealing option
BY JOHN FAY | JFAY@ENQUIRER.COM

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Reds aren't going to make any announcement, but the feeling in camp is that they've found their closer.

The question about Dustin Hermanson was whether his back was sound. Through three outings, several bullpen sessions and one very tough play at first, his back has been fine.

If Hermanson can be what he was in the 2005 - when he saved 34 games and had a 2.04 ERA with the Chicago White Sox - one of the biggest questions about the Reds will be answered.

"It would be huge for us," Reds manager Jerry Narron said.

Heretofore, the Reds have talked about using a combination of David Weathers and Mike Stanton in the closer role.

"That's still a pretty good combination," Narron said. "Their role just might be different."

Narron talked a bit about what a team wants in a closer Sunday.

"You've got to have talent, you've got to be a guy that has the intangibles and wants to pitch the ninth inning," Narron said.

Hermanson, a 34-year-old right-hander, qualifies on all counts - particularly the "wanting the ball" part. He wants the ball, and he wants to attack hitters.

"All I do is think intensity as a closer," he said. "I like watching guys throughout the game, and I analyze what they've been doing. You've got to be smart out there."

"I think intensity will get you through a lot of situations. That's one of the things you can't teach is intensity," Hermanson said.

Hermanson faced his toughest test Saturday. The Red Sox sent up Kevin Youkilis, Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz against him. He got all three on flyouts.

"I'm recovering from this little (cold) that I've got. I know I'm not going to overpower people," he said. "I went nice and easy and let the ball run for me."

That's basically Hermanson's style. He throws a split-finger and a slider.

"Let them see it over the middle; by the time it gets there, it's on their hands," Hermanson said. "That's what happened. Their eyes get big and they jam themselves. I'm still learning how to pitch. You throw that ball down the middle and let it run somewhere, it's amazing."

Hermanson has a wealth of experience. He has started, set up and closed. Hermanson went 14-11 with a 3.13 ERA for Montreal in 1998 and 14-13 with a 4.45 ERA for St. Louis in 2001 as a starter.

His career path has come full circle. He was a closer in the minors and at Kent State. In fact, he never started a game in the minors. But the Expos made him a starter in 1997.

He remained a starter until 2002. His first extended time as a closer came in 2004 for the San Francisco Giants. He saved 17 games that year.

His breakout year was 2005 with the White Sox.

But he always had the closer mentality.

"Even when I was starting, I was pitching every inning like it was the ninth," he said. "I'd get to the fifth and I'd be (exhausted). It took me a while to learn to keep a little bit in the reserve tank as a starter."

You don't do that as a closer.

"When you close, you've got to let it all out and then be ready for the next night," he said. "It's a little easier coming out of the pen because you don't have to wait four days to redeem yourself.

"That's what I like about closing: You're going to be out there the next day."

One of the reasons Hermanson signed with the Reds was a chance to close, but that was not the only reason. He's from Springfield, Ohio.

"Cincinnati is a place I was born and raised, went to games," Hermanson said. "My dad, who is in heaven, would love to see me play for the Reds.

"I'm a spiritual guy. I look to God and have him guide me to where I'm supposed to go. This just felt right."

Heath
03-19-2007, 02:00 PM
Looks like John Fay copied Hal McCoy.

Thank goodness for Rosecrans.

flyer85
03-19-2007, 02:02 PM
Makes me gloomy like the weather to think they are even considering him for closer. Send him to AAA and let him prove he is healthy and see if his velocity comes back.

BRM
03-19-2007, 02:03 PM
Has back problems that were not fixed, is closing in on 35 and has a fastball that tops out at about 85-86.


I haven't seen any articles that discuss his velocity. Are the reports indicating his fastball is really topping out at 86? If that's the case, why would he even be in the discussion for the closer job? Do they think he'll be able to add 5-6 mph as he gets stronger?

flyer85
03-19-2007, 02:06 PM
I haven't seen any articles that discuss his velocity. Are the reports indicating his fastball is really topping out at 86? I watched the game on Saturday. Burton's slider and splitter were harder than Hermanson's fastball which was 83-86 in his outing. The gun wasn't slow because everyone else was throwing where you thought they should be.

edabbs44
03-19-2007, 02:07 PM
I haven't seen any articles that discuss his velocity. Are the reports indicating his fastball is really topping out at 86? If that's the case, why would he even be in the discussion for the closer job? Do they think he'll be able to add 5-6 mph as he gets stronger?

Veteran presence.
Knows how to play the game.
Been there before.

I know it's getting old joking and saying these things over and over again...but it's old hearing them as well.

BRM
03-19-2007, 02:08 PM
I watched the game on Saturday. Burton's slider and splitter were harder than Hermanson's fastball which was 83-86 in his outing. The gun wasn't slow because everyone else was throwing where you thought they should be.

That's pretty sad. The Reds must think he can add a few mph to his fastball then.

dougdirt
03-19-2007, 02:28 PM
That's pretty sad. The Reds must think he can add a few mph to his fastball then.

Problem is, he needs to add about 5 MPH to it just so he can compete with David Weathers fastball....

Sea Ray
03-19-2007, 03:18 PM
I don't like where this Hermanson thing is headed either, especially if keeping him means losing a prospect like Burton. I keep hearing that he was the closer for the White Sox in 2005 but the difference maker in that pen, especially down the stretch was Jenks. I'm not so sure they win it all w/o Jenks.

I can live with a junk balling closer but not 84 mph junk balling. This isn't a Bob Wickman we're dealing with here. This is going to lead to a lot of sniffing glue during 9th innings for us Reds fans. Is this all the better they can judge talent?

KronoRed
03-19-2007, 03:25 PM
Good grief, as the closer?

He's the last guy I'd want to see heading out to finish a game.

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 03:39 PM
Good grief, as the closer?

He's the last guy I'd want to see heading out to finish a game.

C'mon, the last guy?

http://newyork.mets.mlb.com/images/2005/06/08/yDRfmIsB.jpg

KronoRed
03-19-2007, 03:42 PM
Yes..I'd rather see Graves.

membengal
03-19-2007, 03:44 PM
Krono, that's insane. I would rather see you pitch than Graves...

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 03:51 PM
Krono, that's insane. I would rather see you pitch than Graves...

If only because that meant I wouldn't have to physically look at Danny Graves....

KronoRed
03-19-2007, 03:53 PM
I'd love the job but one problem, I'm in my 20's, so that's out.

How bout RFS? he's a crafty vet :D

Roy Tucker
03-19-2007, 03:58 PM
http://www.cantonrep.com/photos/January2006/17graves.jpg

pedro
03-19-2007, 03:59 PM
http://www.cantonrep.com/photos/January2006/17graves.jpg

Is that "Ugly Betty"?

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 04:02 PM
Is that "Ugly Betty"?

Pfffftttt.....:laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

:thumbup:

Doc. Scott
03-19-2007, 04:13 PM
You know, this article is just Fay's opinion wrapped around a quote or two from Jerry Narron.

Fay also thought DJ Mattox was going to make the club's starting rotation out of spring training back in 2004.

Team Clark
03-19-2007, 04:32 PM
Looks like John Fay copied Hal McCoy.

Thank goodness for Rosecrans.

That's pretty much an everyday thing.

Doc. Scott
03-19-2007, 04:36 PM
That's pretty much an everyday thing.

The problem is that Rosecrans is pretty much the RC Cola to Pepsi Fay and Coke McCoy, given C. Trent's youth and position at the just-take-it-out-behind-the-barn-already Post.

I wonder if it was the loss of Andy Furman's frequent endorsements of the Post on WLW that accelerated its downfall. ;)

Team Clark
03-19-2007, 04:39 PM
The problem is that Rosecrans is pretty much the RC Cola to Pepsi Fay and Coke McCoy, given C. Trent's youth and position at the just-take-it-out-behind-the-barn-already Post.

I wonder if it was the loss of Andy Furman's frequent endorsements of the Post on WLW that accelerated its downfall. ;)

Great point even with the humor. I do like Furman's new show. Not bad at all.

C.Trent just puts it out there. Fay is clueless and McCoy knows what is going on but either doesn't write it or when he does it's a day late and a dollar short. Maybe his editor is bad???

Tom Servo
03-19-2007, 04:50 PM
I don't know about you guys, but I just can't help but have this feeling deep down that one day when the bullpen gets bad enough Wayne will call Graves and hold a press conference about how great it is that the Reds all-time saves leader is back and will be the closer again. :barf:

Ga_Red
03-19-2007, 05:19 PM
it IS ST and it may turn out you are right....

from what he's shown here
he is another steal, big time , for WK.

who cares what his fb clocks at if he never has to
throw it for a strike? his split is his out pitch, and
it's a good one this spring.

everything he throws runs in or out or drops off the table.

if he turns out to be a 1/2 year pitcher, fine,
a better option than Stanton or Weathers, imo....

Chip R
03-19-2007, 05:33 PM
Fay is clueless and McCoy knows what is going on but either doesn't write it or when he does it's a day late and a dollar short. Maybe his editor is bad???


McCoy has an editor? :confused:

edabbs44
03-19-2007, 05:36 PM
it IS ST and it may turn out you are right....

from what he's shown here
he is another steal, big time , for WK.

who cares what his fb clocks at if he never has to
throw it for a strike? his split is his out pitch, and
it's a good one this spring.

everything he throws runs in or out or drops off the table.

if he turns out to be a 1/2 year pitcher, fine,
a better option than Stanton or Weathers, imo....

Another steal? You can't be serious...

He might end up doing a decent numbers, but please do not say he is another steal. He hasn't done anything yet.

Red Leader
03-19-2007, 05:51 PM
McCoy has an editor? :confused:

Yeah, but she's not very good at her job. :p:

Kidding. Just kidding. :D

Wheelhouse
03-19-2007, 05:57 PM
Complete this-

Aurilia: RedsZone analysis of Rich ; Hermanson:____________

I smell another year of wailing and tearing lapels about one player only to have the critics eat crow.

Sea Ray
03-19-2007, 06:02 PM
McCoy has an editor? :confused:


You bet he does. He'll mention him everytime you catch him make a factual error.

Sea Ray
03-19-2007, 06:04 PM
who cares what his fb clocks at if he never has to
throw it for a strike? his split is his out pitch, and
it's a good one this spring.

everything he throws runs in or out or drops off the table.



Major league hitters are pretty sharp. If your scouting report is accurate they'll lay off the split, let it be called a ball, and then tee off on the low to mid 80s stuff. For the most part, it is problematic when your best pitch is " a ball."

Johnny Footstool
03-19-2007, 06:13 PM
"I think intensity will get you through a lot of situations. That's one of the things you can't teach is intensity," Hermanson said.

Translation: My stuff isn't any good, so I'll pretend I've got some special trait that makes up for it.

Johnny Footstool
03-19-2007, 06:14 PM
Complete this-

Aurilia: RedsZone analysis of Rich ; Hermanson:____________

I smell another year of wailing and tearing lapels about one player only to have the critics eat crow.

Is this based on anything other than wishful thinking?

flyer85
03-19-2007, 06:20 PM
Complete this-

Aurilia: RedsZone analysis of Rich ; Hermanson:____________

I smell another year of wailing and tearing lapels about one player only to have the critics eat crow.like with Rick White and Chris Hammond before the start of last season.

REDREAD
03-19-2007, 06:38 PM
like with Rick White and Chris Hammond before the start of last season.

I'm not going to be happy if we lose Burton to keep Harmanson on the roster.

Heck, if Hermanson is kept, I think we will have to option Bray or expose Belisle IN ADDITION to losing Burton. (Or option Coffey or trade Cormier).

We are already short 1 roster spot if we wanted to keep Burton and Belisile.
Not that either of them is a superstar, but Hermanson at best has one mediocre year left in him. Why does a team like the Reds need a one year stop gap like him when they have 3 other Wiley vets in the pen? Why not at least attempt to build for the future?

I have a hard time believing Hermanson is going to be any better than Belisile or Bray.. but that's who he's going to push out.

Jr's Boy
03-19-2007, 06:46 PM
'm still learning how to pitch. You throw that ball down the middle and let it run somewhere, it's amazing."



This is a scary sentence.

Kc61
03-19-2007, 06:59 PM
Hermanson is worth a try. Keep in mind that Guardado could be back in the second half. Without a true closer, I don't see a better option to close games. Coffey and Bray are more suited to pitch multiple innings in the 6th, 7th and 8th innings.

Of course, this will not satisfy those who would run minor leaguers out there. But Brad Salmon, whatever his velocity, has never shown himself to be major league closer quality. Hermanson is a gamble but, if he is healthy, it is worth taking given the lack of other closer alternatives.

OnBaseMachine
03-19-2007, 07:01 PM
It will be a travshamockery if Hermanson makes this team over Jared Burton or Brad Salmon. Especially Burton.

Cooper
03-19-2007, 08:12 PM
Let him pick up 9 out of 11 easy save chances with a deceptively low ERA (read low BABIP) and then trade him as a "proven closer"....it's possible the Devil Rays might like a guy like that. Heck, they may punt you a prospect for those numbers.

KronoRed
03-19-2007, 08:25 PM
Sadly the D-rays will be out of the race on April 4th so they won't need a closer ;)

GAC
03-19-2007, 08:51 PM
This thread is like Redszone's "ST" (getting ready for the season)....

I think you're all over reacting, and over reaching, a bit. This is Fay's opinion. Fay knows diddly. Nothing, absolutely nothing, has definitively come out from the Reds that Hermanson is gonna be the closer.

He was signed to a minor league contract with an invitation to ST. Low risk.

Is he considered in the "hunt"? Sure. What team isn't going to say that about any player trying to vie for that role? But Hermanson hasn't thrown too many innings. He made his spring debut 10 days ago and pitched a solid inning vs the Indians. He has done the same on the 13th vs the Blue Jays, and had a very solid inning the other day versus the Sox (and vs their big guys). Now does that mean anything? Only that his back is holding up and he is throwing well. Take it for what it's worth.

But the guy is probably more suited for middle relief then the closer role.

So sit back, relax, take a deep breath, maybe pop a couple Valiums folks. ;)

redsmetz
03-19-2007, 09:02 PM
I think you're all over reacting, and over reaching, a bit. This is Fay's opinion. Fay knows diddly. Nothing, absolutely nothing, has definitively come out from the Reds that Hermanson is gonna be the closer.


I think you're being too kind to John Fay, GAC. :)

Big Klu
03-19-2007, 10:32 PM
This is Fay's opinion. Fay knows diddly.

"He doesn't know me."

http://image.allmusic.com/00/amg/pic200/drp100/p171/p17171c5ev6.jpg

M2
03-19-2007, 10:57 PM
You know, this article is just Fay's opinion wrapped around a quote or two from Jerry Narron.

Fay also thought DJ Mattox was going to make the club's starting rotation out of spring training back in 2004.

I believe Mattox is now scheduled to be the ace of the Broxton Rox in the Can-Am League.

reds44
03-20-2007, 12:57 AM
Yes..I'd rather see Graves.
Gravity ball................COME ON DOWN.

;)

I'm still not totally against FCB's idea of using Homer at closer for a year. The problem with that is.....A. what good does it do Homer? and B. it's only a 1 year solution. When you are the Red Sox or the Cardinals when they were in a pennant race then it makes sense, but for the Reds? If we are in the race and need a closer, it's something that coudl be addressed.

mth123
03-20-2007, 06:27 AM
Gravity ball................COME ON DOWN.

;)

I'm still not totally against FCB's idea of using Homer at closer for a year. The problem with that is.....A. what good does it do Homer? and B. it's only a 1 year solution. When you are the Red Sox or the Cardinals when they were in a pennant race then it makes sense, but for the Reds? If we are in the race and need a closer, it's something that coudl be addressed.

Homer needs to get his innings stretched out for another season in the minors or in the 5th starter role in the majors eventually. Time in the pen at this point would be a step back in his development and postpone his time as a starter by another year. Next year, after Homer has thrown 170 Innings or so in 2007, if Homer doesn't look like he's ready for a rotation spot, I'd be all for breaking him in as a relief pitcher. Not now. That step comes later and only if he doesn't seem capable of going right into the rotation.

Cooper
03-20-2007, 08:58 AM
Mth123: I completely disagree with your assessment re: Bailey. Time in the pen would not hurt Bailey's development at all. Every pitcher Earl Weaver (and often Whitey Herzog) would break in as a rookie started in the pen until they got their sea legs.

I think working in the pen gives the rookie a chance to get acclimated to his environment in little doses where he can succeed. You make him feel good about what he's doing.

MaineRed
03-20-2007, 11:12 AM
Working in the pen and being the closer are two totally different things.

M2
03-20-2007, 11:24 AM
Working in the pen and being the closer are two totally different things.

Adam Wainwright seemed to handle both with aplomb last season.

Red Leader
03-20-2007, 11:27 AM
Adam Wainwright seemed to handle both with aplomb last season.

I'm anxious to see what the results of last year will mean for this year. It's typically not "in season" that you see the results of moving someone back and forth, but shortly after.

He's no Danny Graves, but I don't think he'll be as sharp this year.

MaineRed
03-20-2007, 12:12 PM
Adam Wainwright seemed to handle both with aplomb last season.

Todd Coffety was handling set-up work with aplomb last season and then he got moved to closer. Different story.

So I'm guessing you are up for Bailey closing? For the sake of discussion, say he saves 35 games with an ERA between 2 and 3 this year. Where do you pencil in Bailey for 08?

If your answer is the starting rotation, does that change if Wainwright and Papplebon have arm issues this season or struggle?

Puffy
03-20-2007, 12:14 PM
Complete this-

Aurilia: RedsZone analysis of Rich ; Hermanson:____________

I smell another year of wailing and tearing lapels about one player only to have the critics eat crow.

Well, maybe when you eat your crow about Adam Dunn we will all have a "thanksgiving" type affair, eh Wheelhouse?

Puffy
03-20-2007, 12:17 PM
Major league hitters are pretty sharp. If your scouting report is accurate they'll lay off the split, let it be called a ball, and then tee off on the low to mid 80s stuff. For the most part, it is problematic when your best pitch is " a ball."

Exhibit A: Hideo Nomo. He went from Phenom to average when the league figured out to just lay off the split

Red Leader
03-20-2007, 12:21 PM
Exhibit A: Hideo Nomo. He went from Phenom to average when the league figured out to just lay off the split

Aren't you supposed to ask for and then be given permission before you can introduce evidence?

That's the way it works on TV. :D

RedlegNation
03-20-2007, 12:33 PM
C'mon, the last guy?

http://newyork.mets.mlb.com/images/2005/06/08/yDRfmIsB.jpg

I just threw up a little in my mouth.

Red Leader
03-20-2007, 12:38 PM
I just threw up a little in my mouth.

Wash it down with plenty of donuts and beer.

Just like Danny.

PuffyPig
03-20-2007, 12:58 PM
Exhibit A: Hideo Nomo. He went from Phenom to average when the league figured out to just lay off the split

When exactly did the league figure out Nomo, because he had 2 of his best seasons in 2002 and 2003, 7 and 8 years after he broke into the league?

He won 16 games in each of those years, pitching 200+ innings with high K's and low 3 ERA's.

Puffy
03-20-2007, 01:04 PM
When exactly did the league figure out Nomo, because he had 2 of his best seasons in 2002 and 2003, 7 and 8 years after he broke into the league?

He won 16 games in each of those years, pitching 200+ innings with high K's and low 3 ERA's.

Well, he changed his pitching style since he broke into the league. My point was, and I know you know this because I know you know baseball, was that when he broke in he was virtually unhittable. He had a Fernando type rookie year. Then he came back down to earth because hitters figured him out. He has had to make adjustments and has gone from (year to year) average some years, above average some years, slightly below average some years since then.

But I know you knew that already and were just asking me to fill in the rest of the people, right?

Johnny Footstool
03-20-2007, 01:05 PM
When exactly did the league figure out Nomo, because he had 2 of his best seasons in 2002 and 2003, 7 and 8 years after he broke into the league?

He won 16 games in each of those years, pitching 200+ innings with high K's and low 3 ERA's.

He posted ERAs over 4.50 and WHIPs in the 1.40 range for 4 straight years prior to 2002.

Sounds like he made an adjustment in 2002 (like moving back to Dodger stadium, maybe).

Puffy
03-20-2007, 01:10 PM
I was a little wrong too - it was his third year that teams started laying off the split more.

He ERA rose after his first year, after his second year, after his third year and then again after his fourth year (4.92)

So yeah, I think the league figured him out considering his ERA his rookie year was 2.54.

And again, I never said he wasn't still an effective pitcher - I stated, very clearly, that the league figured him out.

But again, you knew that - you just like breaking balls.

PuffyPig
03-20-2007, 01:20 PM
But I know you knew that already and were just asking me to fill in the rest of the people, right?

Actually, I didn't really remember that he had changed his pitching style. I did remember he was lights out when he first came up, and that we wasn't as great thereafter, but he was certainly above average for many of his later years. Didn't he have injury problems? I seem to forget more than I rememeber these days.

There's lots of pitchers who's best pitch seems to be a ball that hitters still have trouble laying off of. Bruce Sutter's split-fingered fastball was usually a ball. Once Rob Dibble got ahead of a batter, he'd always finish them off with a slider in the dirt, though his career collapsed due to injuries.

Not that anyone would ever confuse their stuff with Hermy's.

M2
03-20-2007, 01:30 PM
Todd Coffety was handling set-up work with aplomb last season and then he got moved to closer. Different story.

So I'm guessing you are up for Bailey closing? For the sake of discussion, say he saves 35 games with an ERA between 2 and 3 this year. Where do you pencil in Bailey for 08?

If your answer is the starting rotation, does that change if Wainwright and Papplebon have arm issues this season or struggle?

And Fernando Rodney did just fine in his save chances. The world abounds with examples, but, in general, if you can blow away opposing hitters, you'll make a good closer.

I'm not necessarily up for Bailey doing anything in the majors this season. IMO he just gave us all a taste for how far a leap it is from phenom to quality major leaguer. If he's chewing through minor leaguers this season (and I'd start him at AA) then I could see bringing him up and putting him in the bullpen.

Frankly, I don't know that there's any good way to protect a 21-year-old arm. They're fragile by nature. But I've seen too many young pitchers, including more can't-miss guys who missed than I can begin to list, get over their heads real fast as major league starters. I like the idea of taking a sub-24-year-old pitcher and sticking him in the bullpen just because I think it gives the manager a chance to keep the kid from getting shell-shock. If the kid doesn't have it in a relief appearance you can go right out and get him. If he doesn't have it when he takes the mounc for a start, then he's in for a beating that could roost in his grey matter.

So, if Bailey blows away guys in the minors and then blows away guys in a setup role, I figure the Reds can make a starter/closer call dependent upon their needs at the end of the season (with "none of the above" being an option).

History's littered with examples of young guys who transitioned into the majors as relievers so I don't see why it's any particular concern to go that route with Bailey.

Puffy
03-20-2007, 01:34 PM
Actually, I didn't really remember that he had changed his pitching style. I did remember he was lights out when he first came up, and that we wasn't as great thereafter, but he was certainly above average for many of his later years. Didn't he have injury problems? I seem to forget more than I rememeber these days.

There's lots of pitchers who's best pitch seems to be a ball that hitters still have trouble laying off of. Bruce Sutter's split-fingered fastball was usually a ball. Once Rob Dibble got ahead of a batter, he'd always finish them off with a slider in the dirt, though his career collapsed due to injuries.

Not that anyone would ever confuse their stuff with Hermy's.

I don't know how much of it is changing one's style as much as it is learning what hitters will do against you.

What happened with Nomo was that hitters began jumping on the fastball early in counts and not letting him get ahead of them. His out pitch was so good that was the only defense. For example, a guy like Dunn would mostly have gotten eaten up by Nomo early in Nomo's career.

And I apologize if I seemed rude in response - not enough coffee yet!

REDREAD
03-20-2007, 01:46 PM
I don't know how much of it is changing one's style as much as it is learning what hitters will do against you.

What happened with Nomo was that hitters began jumping on the fastball early in counts and not letting him get ahead of them. His out pitch was so good that was the only defense. For example, a guy like Dunn would mostly have gotten eaten up by Nomo early in Nomo's career.

And I apologize if I seemed rude in response - not enough coffee yet!

I recall one of the Reds' hitters ( it was either Hal Morris or Eric Davis), after a good day vs Nomo saying that the secret was to not swing at any low and away pitch until Nomo threw one for a strike in that at bat. The theory was that over 90% that low and away pitch was a splitter that was a ball anyway, and you were better off taking them all until Nomo threw one for a strike.

So the Red hitter would take all those pitches, Nomo would fall behind in the count and then be forced to throw a fastball for a strike. The batter in question got 3 or 4 hits that day, IIRC.. Anyhow the Reds did well against Nomo that day.

I imagine other teams adopted a simliar strategy.

Puffy
03-20-2007, 01:49 PM
I remember it different Redread - I seem to remember that what they did was swing at the first fastball they saw and never let him get to strike one because once he did that then came the split. Cause the split looks like a fastball until it drops off a table and thats why he was such a strikeout machine early in his career (and sometimes later in his career as well)

RedlegNation
03-20-2007, 03:51 PM
Wash it down with plenty of donuts and beer.

Just like Danny.

Emotionally, will we ever get over the Danny Graves Era?

Red Leader
03-20-2007, 03:56 PM
Emotionally, will we ever get over the Danny Graves Era?

I'm still in therapy, but my shrink is optimistic.

REDREAD
03-20-2007, 04:02 PM
I remember it different Redread - I seem to remember that what they did was swing at the first fastball they saw and never let him get to strike one because once he did that then came the split. Cause the split looks like a fastball until it drops off a table and thats why he was such a strikeout machine early in his career (and sometimes later in his career as well)

I may not have said that clear.. I think we are saying the same thing.. Lay off the splitter, go for the fastball.

My scenerio was when he started off with splitters.. I think yours was when he started off with a fastball (that was a stike), to jump on it.

When Nomo got ahead in the count, he was pretty devastating. He also had an effective high fastball that was hard for guys to resist when they were behind in the count.

Sea Ray
03-20-2007, 05:33 PM
Actually, I didn't really remember that he had changed his pitching style. I did remember he was lights out when he first came up, and that we wasn't as great thereafter, but he was certainly above average for many of his later years. Didn't he have injury problems? I seem to forget more than I rememeber these days.

There's lots of pitchers who's best pitch seems to be a ball that hitters still have trouble laying off of. Bruce Sutter's split-fingered fastball was usually a ball. Once Rob Dibble got ahead of a batter, he'd always finish them off with a slider in the dirt, though his career collapsed due to injuries.

Not that anyone would ever confuse their stuff with Hermy's.

Bruce Sutter is unusual in that he made it to the Hall with a pitch that was not a strike. Kudos to Bruce but he's the exception.

My recollection of Nomo's career was that he just kind of wore out. He had a ton of innings on that little body even before the Dodgers acquired him. He lost a lot of velocity. To his credit he learned how to pitch w/o the velocity later in his career. All in all he turned out to be very durable. There were a lot of pitches in that arm.

TRF
03-20-2007, 05:45 PM
Hermanson is worth a try. Keep in mind that Guardado could be back in the second half. Without a true closer, I don't see a better option to close games. Coffey and Bray are more suited to pitch multiple innings in the 6th, 7th and 8th innings.

Of course, this will not satisfy those who would run minor leaguers out there. But Brad Salmon, whatever his velocity, has never shown himself to be major league closer quality. Hermanson is a gamble but, if he is healthy, it is worth taking given the lack of other closer alternatives.

I keep reading posts about Guardado being back in the second half. The guy had 14 Danny Graves like games as a Red (Good Danny, not bad Danny or Great Danny.) and he's proclaimed like the second coming.

Can we please remember he was pounded like a mallard before the Reds acquired him? Can we remember not everyone comes back from TJ surgery? And those that do often return too soon? 12 months is pretty quick even with today's advances. Can we remember he's only had 3 good seasons as a closer, and didn't even become a good pitcher until he was 30? I hated the Guardado trade because at the time there were questions about his health. (seems familiar) And now we can say well, Guardado will be back in June.

To which I say, blech.

KronoRed
03-20-2007, 07:00 PM
Emotionally, will we ever get over the Danny Graves Era?

According to some stuff in the Reds HOF Danny is still a Red :devil:

PuffyPig
03-20-2007, 07:24 PM
I keep reading posts about Guardado being back in the second half. The guy had 14 Danny Graves like games as a Red (Good Danny, not bad Danny or Great Danny.) and he's proclaimed like the second coming.

Can we please remember he was pounded like a mallard before the Reds acquired him? Can we remember not everyone comes back from TJ surgery? And those that do often return too soon? 12 months is pretty quick even with today's advances. Can we remember he's only had 3 good seasons as a closer, and didn't even become a good pitcher until he was 30? I hated the Guardado trade because at the time there were questions about his health. (seems familiar) And now we can say well, Guardado will be back in June.

To which I say, blech.

I'm not a huge Eddie booster, but he was bettter than you say. He certainly had more than 3 good seasons. Until last year, his ERA decreased for 7 straight seasons.

He pitched well for us. He struck out 17 guys in 14 innings, and was BABIP unlucky in his time with us. He still posted an ERA in the 1's for us.

Does he have anything left?? It's debatable, and it's certainly unlikely he can produce big time this year.

But up until the first half of last year, Eddie had been a pretty good pitcher for about 6 years.

mth123
03-21-2007, 12:33 AM
Mth123: I completely disagree with your assessment re: Bailey. Time in the pen would not hurt Bailey's development at all. Every pitcher Earl Weaver (and often Whitey Herzog) would break in as a rookie started in the pen until they got their sea legs.

I think working in the pen gives the rookie a chance to get acclimated to his environment in little doses where he can succeed. You make him feel good about what he's doing.

I agree, but they went to the pen after they had sufficiently developed to the point of being able to handle a starter's workload. Bailey only pitched 140 innings last year and it's the most he's ever pitched.

Put him in the pen now and try sticking him in the rotation in 2008. He'll be a 5 inning pitcher who won't be able to handle the load. Or, he'll jump his innings too quickly and will end-up as another story of a Red's prospect who flamed out with arm problems before he really got going. I don't take that chance with the first real living, breathing, top of the rotation pitching prospect that the Reds have had since Carter was president (Soto).

Let him add another 30 innings or so this year and he'll be ready physically for whatever role his effectiveness dictates in 2008.

Caveat Emperor
03-21-2007, 01:21 AM
Does he have anything left?? It's debatable, and it's certainly unlikely he can produce big time this year.

Problem is, unless he got a 2-for-1 discount on his Tommy John surgery that we didn't hear about, I still think his shoulder is shot as well.

TRF
03-21-2007, 06:59 PM
I'm not a huge Eddie booster, but he was bettter than you say. He certainly had more than 3 good seasons. Until last year, his ERA decreased for 7 straight seasons.

He pitched well for us. He struck out 17 guys in 14 innings, and was BABIP unlucky in his time with us. He still posted an ERA in the 1's for us.

Does he have anything left?? It's debatable, and it's certainly unlikely he can produce big time this year.

But up until the first half of last year, Eddie had been a pretty good pitcher for about 6 years.

Read my post again. 3 good years as a CLOSER. It took him a looooong time to figure things out. He wasn't the closer for the Twins until 2002. 2004 was ok if you like 18 saves and 41 IP. An injury that year perhaps? He's 36, and coming back from TJ surgery. What's to like about any of that?

Cooper
03-21-2007, 09:31 PM
mth123: imo, it's more about building success and making sure he can handle it emotionally.....M2 spelled out what kind of emotional state a young pitcher is in and how if things do not go well you can pull him without blowing up your pen and, in a way, you giving him the best chance possible to build on success.

Point being, it's more about his head than his arm.

mth123
03-21-2007, 10:44 PM
mth123: imo, it's more about building success and making sure he can handle it emotionally.....M2 spelled out what kind of emotional state a young pitcher is in and how if things do not go well you can pull him without blowing up your pen and, in a way, you giving him the best chance possible to build on success.

Point being, it's more about his head than his arm.

I agree. Next year. This year he needs to build his arm. He's simply not yet ready Physically. Without that, his head won't matter.

Eric_Davis
03-22-2007, 05:59 PM
For whatever reason, closing games is not for everybody. You have to have something special in you to get it done....maybe something quirky, who knows.

A perfect example....

Last year, Clay Meredith was easily the best reliever in all of baseball last year. An OPS of .451!!!!! a WHIP of .710!!! only 6BB's in 50IP....

Yet, when given the opportunity to close games, he tried it twice and blew BOTH save opportunities!

It takes someone special.

You can't go by stats.

coachw513
03-22-2007, 06:07 PM
Today when interviewed by Grande/Welsh, WK had this to say about Hermanson:


WK: "He (Hermanson) has a lot of guts...he's real fun to be around, he's a really positive guy...he knows what it takes to be successful...stuff-wise???...we'll see...we got the same medical reports as everyone else did, but we were the only team that actually brought him in for a physical...you can learn a lot about a guy when you bring him in and take a look...Dr. Kremcheck signed off on him...

First thought when listening to him: He's not sold, or at least he wasn't letting on that he was sold that Hermanson's stuff is good enough...

Next, nice to see we've figured out we might want to give a good physical exam before taking guys on (as opposed to Maj :D )

Handofdeath
03-22-2007, 06:11 PM
Read my post again. 3 good years as a CLOSER. It took him a looooong time to figure things out. He wasn't the closer for the Twins until 2002. 2004 was ok if you like 18 saves and 41 IP. An injury that year perhaps? He's 36, and coming back from TJ surgery. What's to like about any of that?

TRF, you seem to have prejudice against any pitcher over the age of 32. It's not 1928 anymore, guys can and do pitch effectively into their 40's.

reds44
03-22-2007, 08:32 PM
Hermanson reminds me so much of Rick White and Chris Hammond last year (yes I know Hammond is left handed). It just seems like a move destined to backfire.

BRM
03-23-2007, 10:44 AM
Hermanson reminds me so much of Rick White and Chris Hammond last year (yes I know Hammond is left handed). It just seems like a move destined to backfire.

Cormier and Stanton give me similar feelings.

Tom Servo
03-24-2007, 03:45 AM
This is from another, new McCoy article about Hermanson as closer:


What pleased Krivsky and Pole was that in Hermanson's last outing, he hit 90 miles an hour on the radar gun after throwing mostly 87-88 in his previous three appearances, an indication that his arm, shoulder and most importantly, his back, are strengthening daily.

Falls City Beer
03-24-2007, 11:35 AM
This is from another, new McCoy article about Hermanson as closer:

Or that each radar gun is a little different.

I hope his velocity is up, though I wouldn't count on a 3 MPH jump in one or two days. That sounds a bit suspicious to me.