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coachw513
05-02-2007, 11:25 AM
of the ridiculed "veteran presence" some bring to this club...if a playoff run exists, this doesn't hurt:

From today's Post:


JEWELRY SHOW - Mike Stanton brought in his treasure in less-than auspicious manner - a white plastic bag with a silhouette of a cow and the words "Gold's - Best Meat in Town" on the side.

It wasn't meat inside the bag, but ice - as in jewelry. Reds reliever Eddie Guardado asked Stanton if he could bring in his rings from his Houston-area home so Guardado could get a peek at the treasures.

Stanton brought all of his rings in, all eight of them. He had two National League championship rings from his time with the Braves and a 1995 World Series ring from the same team. He also brought in World Series rings he won with Yankees in 1998, 1999, 2000 and an American League championship ring from the Yankees in 2001. Stanton actually has two 1999 World Series rings, the official ring and a players-only ring that Roger Clemens had designed and the players paid for themselves.

"The Reds better dig real deep if we win one this year, 'cause I want a big one," Guardado said.

Several players took turns trying on the rings, including Guardado, who came out with five on one hand to show his teammates the jewelry.

"That's all I want," Guardado said. "I've done everything else. I want a ring."

Stanton may have the most jewelry of any current Red, but he's certainly not alone in the possession of the game's biggest prize. Bronson Arroyo won a World Series ring with Boston in 2004 and David Weathers won one with the Yankees in 1996. Jeff Conine and Alex Gonzalez were teammates on the 2003 Marlins and Conine was also a part of Florida's 1997 World Series winners.

The 2003 Marlins ring is the largest World Series ring ever, with 229 diamonds.

"Hey Gonzo, bring out the real jewelry," reliever David Weathers said as others were admiring Stanton's hardware.

Too many of us are so willing to dream of Votto, and Bruce and the like...but if we are close in September I'm counting that these guys will be a major part of learning how to handle it and thrive...

By the way, 229 Diamonds :eek: ...are you kidding me??...wow...guess my wife really got shortchanged :D

Yachtzee
05-02-2007, 11:34 AM
Veteran presence is great in the clubhouse, but if it doesn't show up on the field, they aren't getting that ring.

coachw513
05-02-2007, 11:52 AM
Veteran presence is great in the clubhouse, but if it doesn't show up on the field, they aren't getting that ring.

The thing is, all of those guys did just fine in April...others failed to have a productive month...the bullpen implosion generally wasn't a Stanton/Weathers issue, and Conine and Gonzalez had fantastic months...

BRM
05-02-2007, 11:56 AM
The thing is, all of those guys did just fine in April...others failed to have a productive month...the bullpen implosion generally wasn't a Stanton/Weathers issue, and Conine and Gonzalez had fantastic months...

True. Stanton finished April with a high ERA thanks to two poor performances but overall he was alright. Gonzalez had eye-popping numbers for him in April.

M2
05-02-2007, 12:20 PM
Veteran presence doesn't mean squat if those veterans can't produce.

Gonzalez provides a defensive bulwark for the IF, that's what's going to help the Reds. If Stanton pitches well, then that will help the Reds. Every team has its share of veterans. The Reds certainly haven't been lacking them over the previous six seasons. Did they teach the team how to thrive and how to handle the pressure of a competitive season? No.

All the "leadership" in the world will amount to nothing if you don't have the talent and that talent doesn't already have the necessary internal fortitude. When those two things are in place, then it doesn't matter who your elder statesman are. As long as they can contribute any mix of them will do.

Yachtzee
05-02-2007, 12:21 PM
The thing is, all of those guys did just fine in April...others failed to have a productive month...the bullpen implosion generally wasn't a Stanton/Weathers issue, and Conine and Gonzalez had fantastic months...

Sorry, I wasn't directing it at Stanton or any other player mentioned in the article. I was just speaking generally. If guys with "veteran presence" are performing on the field, I feel they are valuable to the team. I just don't like it when it's used to justify the presence of a player in the lineup who is clearly "past his prime." In those cases, I think continuing to run him out there when you've got good talent sitting behind him does more harm than good. And it is only April. If these guys are still contributing in August, good for them. If not, do you keep running them out there for their "veteran presence?"

coachw513
05-02-2007, 12:42 PM
Sorry, I wasn't directing it at Stanton or any other player mentioned in the article. I was just speaking generally. If guys with "veteran presence" are performing on the field, I feel they are valuable to the team. I just don't like it when it's used to justify the presence of a player in the lineup who is clearly "past his prime." In those cases, I think continuing to run him out there when you've got good talent sitting behind him does more harm than good. And it is only April. If these guys are still contributing in August, good for them. If not, do you keep running them out there for their "veteran presence?"

Absolutely...ANYONE'S presence in the lineup should be based on performance...but much is done behind the scenes, preparing the right way, handling stress and adversity and so on...

Last year, I'm not sure we had a group of guys who could show the team how to "get out" of the free-fall that accompanied the August swoon and the west-coast swing debacle...not that it won't happen again, but I think this team is more insulated to handling the day-to-day and being able to respond accordingly and that's due to having guys who have "been there, done that"...

KronoRed
05-02-2007, 12:44 PM
Veteran presence doesn't mean squat if those veterans can't produce.


Agreed.

Nobody around here ridicules veterans who actually put up the numbers.

Johnny Footstool
05-02-2007, 12:51 PM
Absolutely...ANYONE'S presence in the lineup should be based on performance...but much is done behind the scenes, preparing the right way, handling stress and adversity and so on...

Last year, I'm not sure we had a group of guys who could show the team how to "get out" of the free-fall that accompanied the August swoon and the west-coast swing debacle...not that it won't happen again, but I think this team is more insulated to handling the day-to-day and being able to respond accordingly and that's due to having guys who have "been there, done that"...

Griffey's veteran presence has been with the club since 2000.
Arroyo was with the team last season.
Rich Aurilia had been through a number of playoff series, including a World Series.
Scott Hatteberg has seen plenty of playoff experience.

So you substitute Conine for Aurilia and add Stanton and Gonzalez to the mix, and suddenly the club is better prepared for a playoff run? I don't see it.

redsfan30
05-02-2007, 12:54 PM
The stance I hate most about this board is if you're over a certain age, you're worthless.

Yachtzee
05-02-2007, 01:07 PM
The stance I hate most about this board is if you're over a certain age, you're worthless.

I don't think anyone has ever said that. I'm sure everyone here would agree that Roger Clemens would be a great asset, and he's quite old for a ballplayer. The problem with "veteran presence" is that it often results in acquiring players like Tony Womack and Royce Clayton and giving them extended playing time, or signing Juan Castro to an extension. But if you can get a veteran ballplayer who can still produce and provide much needed guidance to young players, that's a good pickup. Of course, all this talk that the club needs "veteran presence" makes it sound like the Reds are fielding a team of rookies. There's a lot of veteran presence on the team already. What it lacks is the presence of talent, particularly in the bullpen pitching department.

M2
05-02-2007, 01:14 PM
The stance I hate most about this board is if you're over a certain age, you're worthless.

I think you'd find plenty of people would love to see certain veteran players on this team. The problem is the Reds have made a habit of acquiring poor ones over the years. Also, some of the capable veterans the team has acquired have been thrust into the wrong role. For instance, David Weathers is not a guy I'd want closing games for a full season. Ken Griffey Jr. played CF roughly five seasons past the point where he should have been moved to a corner.

Also, though many fans, the franchise and the media try to ignore it, the Reds are rebuilding. The reality is, this franchise needs young talent more than most and until it gets the right mix of young talent then no amount of veteran presence is going to matter.


Last year, I'm not sure we had a group of guys who could show the team how to "get out" of the free-fall that accompanied the August swoon and the west-coast swing debacle...not that it won't happen again, but I think this team is more insulated to handling the day-to-day and being able to respond accordingly and that's due to having guys who have "been there, done that"...

That's become a bit of a broken record with this franchise. THIS year they've got the right veterans to avoid disasters like last year. It's like watching Bullwinkle trying to pull a rabbit out of his hat. No way, no how would Mike Stanton and Alex Gonzalez have pulled the Reds out of that West Coast nose dive last season. In fact they both played for teams that took late season nose dives in 2006.

If the Reds break through in 2006 it will be because Kyle Lohse is having a career year, because Matt Belisle has become a dependable starter, because some young arms in the bullpen have stepped up, because the Hobbs Hamilton phenomenon keeps rolling, because Brandon Phillips takes another step forward, because Adam Dunn pushes his OPS up toward 1.000 and because Edwin Encarnacion settles down and produces in the middle of the lineup. It's not going to be because older guys have taught the team how to cheat the margins, it will be because younger guys have erased the margins.

coachw513
05-02-2007, 01:36 PM
I think you'd find plenty of people would love to see certain veteran players on this team. The problem is the Reds have made a habit of acquiring poor ones over the years. Also, some of the capable veterans the team has acquired have been thrust into the wrong role. For instance, David Weathers is not a guy I'd want closing games for a full season. Ken Griffey Jr. played CF roughly five seasons past the point where he should have been moved to a corner.

Also, though many fans, the franchise and the media try to ignore it, the Reds are rebuilding. The reality is, this franchise needs young talent more than most and until it gets the right mix of young talent then no amount of veteran presence is going to matter.



That's become a bit of a broken record with this franchise. THIS year they've got the right veterans to avoid disasters like last year. It's like watching Bullwinkle trying to pull a rabbit out of his hat. No way, no how would Mike Stanton and Alex Gonzalez have pulled the Reds out of that West Coast nose dive last season. In fact they both played for teams that took late season nose dives in 2006.

If the Reds break through in 2006 it will be because Kyle Lohse is having a career year, because Matt Belisle has become a dependable starter, because some young arms in the bullpen have stepped up, because the Hobbs Hamilton phenomenon keeps rolling, because Brandon Phillips takes another step forward, because Adam Dunn pushes his OPS up toward 1.000 and because Edwin Encarnacion settles down and produces in the middle of the lineup. It's not going to be because older guys have taught the team how to cheat the margins, it will be because younger guys have erased the margins.

valid point...I just remember that "deer in the headlights" look about the club for that 2 week stretch...it's like watching teams like the Magic, Raptors, Nuggets etc in the NBA playoffs...they don't know how to close games out so the more experienced teams (Pistons, Nets, Spurs) find ways to win...

I do totally agree that lesser-tier vets don't drive the bus, stars do...but sometimes they adjust the steering wheel...

LincolnparkRed
05-02-2007, 01:41 PM
That's become a bit of a broken record with this franchise. THIS year they've got the right veterans to avoid disasters like last year. It's like watching Bullwinkle trying to pull a rabbit out of his hat. No way, no how would Mike Stanton and Alex Gonzalez have pulled the Reds out of that West Coast nose dive last season. In fact they both played for teams that took late season nose dives in 2006.



That is a greast point especially with all the veteran scrappiness that Seabass had in Boston. If veterans can pull you out of a losing streak how does one explain Boston's collapse last year? My thought is if you are a weak team it will be found out over 162 games, last years team had a bunch of holes in it and they played over their heads for quite awhile but eventually they crapped out.

Chip R
05-02-2007, 01:47 PM
I don't think anyone has ever said that. I'm sure everyone here would agree that Roger Clemens would be a great asset, and he's quite old for a ballplayer. The problem with "veteran presence" is that it often results in acquiring players like Tony Womack and Royce Clayton and giving them extended playing time, or signing Juan Castro to an extension. But if you can get a veteran ballplayer who can still produce and provide much needed guidance to young players, that's a good pickup. Of course, all this talk that the club needs "veteran presence" makes it sound like the Reds are fielding a team of rookies. There's a lot of veteran presence on the team already. What it lacks is the presence of talent, particularly in the bullpen pitching department.


Good explanation. What I hear a lot is that the Reds - and it's not just the Reds but other teams as well - need that veteranly goodness to show the young players the ropes. Now that doesn't necessarily limit itself to baseball but also to life in general. And I think that's a good thing. But eventually these young players are going to have 3, 4, 5 years in the majors and they shouldn't need a veteran to show them the ropes anymore. In fact they should be the ones showing the younger (than themselves) players the ropes.

A lot of the time gms use veteran players as a crutch because they don't trust younger players. Some managers are like that too. They will bring in and use veterans because they have done it before and they might just do it again. GMs are rarely castigated by the press for bringing in veteran players. When they bring in younger players and they fail is when they get criticized. You look at the Braves. They decided to go with youth to fill their needs a couple of years ago. While they didn't win a division title last year, as seems to be their custom, the players they brought in have by and large succeeded. And Scherholz and Cox have been around the block a few times themselves. No one would bat an eye if they had decided to go with veterans over youth.

M2
05-02-2007, 03:14 PM
My thought is if you are a weak team it will be found out over 162 games, last years team had a bunch of holes in it and they played over their heads for quite awhile but eventually they crapped out.

Can't be said better than that. Baseball's a cruel game that, more than any other sport I can think of, punctures your illusions.

westofyou
05-02-2007, 03:30 PM
Back in 1988 the A's went out and got Don Baylor whom Sandy Alderson said. "Was obtained as much for his talisman quality as his bat." That was the end of Baylor's career and he was in the World Series each of his last 3 years with 3 different teams.

M2
05-02-2007, 03:38 PM
Back in 1988 the A's went out and got Don Baylor whom Sandy Alderson said. "Was obtained as much for his talisman quality as his bat." That was the end of Baylor's career and he was in the World Series each of his last 3 years with 3 different teams.

Lonnie Smith is still the best talisman ever.

redsmetz
05-02-2007, 03:49 PM
Just glancing back on the various championship teams the Reds have had, I will say those teams didn't generally have many older players; although I think more players are playing later than in previous times. I'm not certain of that, but I remember a thread here recently on a higher percentage of players playing into their late 30's and early 40's.

I did see that the 1919 Reds had a 35 year old Jake Daubert in his first season with the Reds. In 1922 it appears to me that he broke the club record for most homers in a season (12) and nearly broke the record for triples (he had 22) - not bad for a 38 year old. He finished his career in the 1924 season, falling ill towards its end. He died in October of 1924 following complications in surgery at the age of 40 (my grandfather had the same thing happen some 10 years later). But during his five years with our club, he was a pretty good ballplayer. (It should be noted that 40 back then was like Julio Franco still playing at nearly 50).

redsmetz
05-02-2007, 03:50 PM
Lonnie Smith is still the best talisman ever.

Reggie Sanders hasn't been to shabby these last number of years until he came to KC.

Johnny Footstool
05-02-2007, 03:53 PM
Reggie Sanders hasn't been to shabby these last number of years until he came to KC.

There's not enough magic in all of Las Vegas to turn the Royals around.

Wheelhouse
05-02-2007, 04:48 PM
Agreed.

Nobody around here ridicules veterans who actually put up the numbers.
Hmmmm, took quite a while for people to admit they were wrong on Aurilia--it's a tough crack pipe for them to get their lips off of....

Ltlabner
05-02-2007, 04:54 PM
All the "leadership" in the world will amount to nothing if you don't have the talent and that talent doesn't already have the necessary internal fortitude. When those two things are in place, then it doesn't matter who your elder statesman are. As long as they can contribute any mix of them will do.

I agree 100% that if a team doesn't have the tallent, no amount of Vet Presence will overcome that. I also agree 100% that vet presence and PTGTRW is often code for "this guy is marginal but we have to explain why we traded for him".

However, I think there is definatley a value of having vets around to pass down tips and tricks to help players improve. Why do you think players flock to a Soto or Bench? There's a value to having someone who's been there before to mentor someone who has not. Raw tallent only gets you so far if it isn't focused. The managers/coaches job is to focus that tallent, but there is no one better than a "peer" to go to when you are having problems and help you think about things in a different way.

I'd dissagree that any mix of "elderstatesman" will do. Bonds qualifies, but do you really want him in your clubhouse?

I think the Reds have over used the "vet presence" and PTGTRW bit soooooo much that many here roll their eyes in distain when they hear it. It's a shame because the addition of a vet who can actually contribute on the field, in addition to in the clubhouse is of critical importance, IMO. Young, raw, unfocused tallent isn't the answer to every problem.

Ltlabner
05-02-2007, 04:59 PM
Hmmmm, took quite a while for people to admit they were wrong....

Fixed that for you. ;)

Redsland
05-02-2007, 05:18 PM
Hmmmm, took quite a while for people to admit they were wrong on Aurilia…
Correct. First he had to put up the numbers, which was Krono's point.

M2
05-02-2007, 06:32 PM
I'd dissagree that any mix of "elderstatesman" will do. Bonds qualifies, but do you really want him in your clubhouse?

Say what you will about Barry Bonds, but he seems to be able to carry a baseball club on his back, even if he's lacking in the humanity department.


I think the Reds have over used the "vet presence" and PTGTRW bit soooooo much that many here roll their eyes in distain when they hear it. It's a shame because the addition of a vet who can actually contribute on the field, in addition to in the clubhouse is of critical importance, IMO. Young, raw, unfocused tallent isn't the answer to every problem.

The disdain comes when PTGTRW doesn't PTGTRW. I've been told guys who can't play SS worth a lick play the game the right way. I've been told pitchers who can't do much more than absorb abuse while they're on the mound play the game right way. I've been told guys who can't hit their way out of a wet paper bag play the game the right way.

Jose Reyes plays the game the right way. Grady Sizemore plays the game the right way.

I've got no problem in using vets to fill holes in accordance with their talents. It's when PTGTRW is used as a blanket protection for an otherwise exceedingly poor decision that fries my bacon.

Chip R
05-02-2007, 07:33 PM
I think the Reds have over used the "vet presence" and PTGTRW bit soooooo much that many here roll their eyes in distain when they hear it. It's a shame because the addition of a vet who can actually contribute on the field, in addition to in the clubhouse is of critical importance, IMO. Young, raw, unfocused tallent isn't the answer to every problem.


And that's the point. Just like the boy who cried wolf, the Reds cry "vet presence" so much we tend not to believe them any more even when a guy like Conine is signed. And youth isn't the answer every time. A lot of folks wanted Joey Votto on the Opening Day roster but he's barely hitting his weight in LOU. Doesn't mean that he's not a good player but his history has shown he takes a year to adjust to the next level. I don't think anyone is saying youth is the answer every time. But neither is "vet presence". You can't expect to win with a team full of scrappy vets just like you can't expect to win with a team full of raw rookies.

KronoRed
05-02-2007, 08:30 PM
Hmmmm, took quite a while for people to admit they were wrong on Aurilia--it's a tough crack pipe for them to get their lips off of....

Eh I don't see it, as much as people talk about Aurilia bashing it's nowhere near the dead horse that people bashing on Dunn is.

Until the 2nd half of last year after the "trade" there was always younger player on the roster people would have rather seen, in 05 it was Lopez and then EE, and again last year it was EE and Deno.

He's gone now so maybe we can all let it go.