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hippie07
12-25-2007, 01:58 PM
I think I'm going to step into a hornet's nest w/ this comment, but I've been trying to think about this considering my perceived idea of what WK is trying to do.

1. If WK has been told to create a winning organization that will compete next season and keep his mindset w/in "small market" parameters. Then he's probably finished w/ major trades and will only do some minor tweaking in order to prepare for the 08 season.

2. If WK has been told to WIN next season at all cost, and don't worry about what's best for the team in the concept of a "small market" future, but think more along the lines of "mid-market." Then I think WK has a couple of more tricks up his sleeve.

I think WK is working under the parameters of #2 and here's why:
1) He picked up Dunn's expensive option (spending more) while trading away a possible Dunn replacement in Hamilton
2) He signed Cordero (spending MUCH more), a "be competive now w/in a small market budget" mindset would have led him to keep Weathers in the spot while grooming Burton, e.g.
3) He acquired Volquez - another pitching prospect who had better success in the MLB than Bailey did last year.

So, this leads me to a question that puts me in the "hornet's nest" .... Do we need Bailey & Cueto?

-A team that is "small market" needs to develop their excellent pitching, but a team that is willing to do what it takes to win will trade for it, or buy it, whatever it takes to acquire it and keep it. Which I think we've seen with WK's transactions:
1) Harang: "keeping good pitching locked up"
2) Arroyo: "acquiring good pitching" and "keeping it locked up"
3) Volquez & Burton: "acquiring good pitching on a budget"
4) Cordero: "paying whatever it takes for good pitching"

So, what Cueto & Bailey... Bailey and Volquez are arguably similar because they have similar potential and will be cheap for the forseeable future. However, Volquez has already begun to show the flashes of brilliance that Bailey has (arguably) not show yet in the MLB. I think deciding b/w Bailey & Volquez comes down to trusting our scouting information & trade value as perceived by other teams. Cueto, is an ace pitching prospect w/ nothing but upside (no negative MLB stats to possibly bring his trade value down in the eyes of other teams).

Do we need Bailey & Cueto during our "win now" period of the next 2 or 3 years?
We'll have:
1)Harang
2)
3) Arroyo
4)
5) Belisle

A "win now" team is missing a 2 and 4... the combination of Volquez, Belisle, Bailey, and Cueto could possibly fill the 3-5 spots adequately, but that forces Arroyo into being our #2 for which he's not the best suited....
IMO, we'd be much better off keeping guys like Votto, EdE and Bruce to make up the young cheap core of the team and trading Bailey and Cueto to get a #2 pitching ... something we NEED to "win now" ..... we don't NEED Bailey & Cueto in the next 3 years like we will EdE, Bruce, and Votto.

So, how about Bailey, Cueto, and Stubbs for Bedard or Kazmir.

Giving us a "win now" rotation (while not "ruining our future" because we're now in a "mid-market" mindset)

Our rotation would be in 08 & 09:
Harang
Bedard/Kazmir
Arroyo
Volquez
Belisle

Will we really miss Bailey & Cueto in the forseeable future?? Yes, there could be injuries, but we'll still have call-ups like Maloney and Shearn to fill in or possible FA acquisitions or trades.

Truth is ... I think "whats best for this year" is really all we need to worry about as long as the team is willing to cough up $$ to fill in gaps.

BucksandReds
12-25-2007, 04:30 PM
We could be all and good for the next 2-3 years w/o Bailey and Cueto but by 2011 we'll have expensive options for 1 yr with Harang and Arroyo and even if we pick those up those two will be in their mid 30's and it's hardly a sure thing that they'll be playing as well as they are now. It's quite probable that at least 2 of Bailey, Cueto, Volquez and Maloney will be starters by the turn of the decade and we'll have them locked up for cheap for several years after that (with the possible exceptionof Volquez.) We need this young core so that we can be in the position that the Indians are in where they will have the talent (maybe minus Sabathia) to be playoff competitive for the next half decade. Winning the WS is about increasing your chances with many different appearances rather than putting your eggs in the 2 year Bedard basket. And even then Bedard has NEVER PITCHED AN ENTIRE SEASON. Keep our guys Wayne. Whether they pan out or not it is the smart move for what we know today.

AmarilloRed
12-25-2007, 04:50 PM
You can never have too much young talented starting pitching. We now have Bailey, Cueto, Volquez, Maloney, and Belisle all inexpensive for the next 5-6 years. Keep in mind that we will have Harang and Arroyo for 4 years, because I would not doubt the Reds will pick up the options if they continue to perform on the field. I think Krivsky is perfectly willing to wait on the young pitching, because the addition of Cordero will help all the starting pitchers.

hippie07
12-25-2007, 09:29 PM
I know that we can never have too much pitching ... but ... can we have too many #4-5 type starters while lacking a #2 starter that will put us over the top.

Although its exciting to "hold onto Bailey & Cueto and see what they become" .... that mindset of ... we don't have a winning staff to start the season.. but let's cross our fingers and hope ... has put us close for a number of year, but no cigar. I'm thinking if I'm WK, I'll probably go on the philosophy that a "bird in the hand is worth 2 in the bush."

Can we honestly hold back on a Bailey & Cueto for Bedard trade because in 2011 we'll have to make a tough decision about whether to pick up options....??? I think thats a no-brainer, if we land Bedard, then we're talking world series contention and by the time 2011 rolls around $$$ won't be scarce, trust me...

AmarilloRed
12-25-2007, 10:06 PM
You are assuming that Bailey , Cueto, and Volquez will remain #4 and #5 starters. It is far more likely that Bailey becomes a #1, Cueto a #2, and we see Volquez become a #3. We can have Harang and Arroyo as our first 2 starters, and then wait for the kids to develop into the starters I see them becoming next year.

hippie07
12-25-2007, 10:58 PM
While I'm not assuming that Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez will always be #4/5 starters... thats what they are right now.. I dont have to assume anything...

You're assuming they'll progress to be #1,2, and 3 starters... they may... but personally I'm of the "bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" philosophy.

You're basically trading 4-5 yrs of 2 guys who have the potential to be #1's but could end up anywhere along the spectrum of 1-5 or maybe not even MLB material, for a proven #1 - hence the bird & bush analogy... It's a gamble -yes - but the other side of that gamble has gotten us nowhere lately.... we're so close to being "winners" but if we wait for a potential to blossom that never blossoms... we'll be close to winning while not winning for as long as we're all fans... History can only repeat itself so many times before I start to get suspicious and the "lets wait and see" strategy no longer causes me to rush to the box office...

AmarilloRed
12-25-2007, 11:10 PM
We can not get Bailey and Cueto back once they are traded. It will be a gamble either way...either we gamble that Bailey and Cueto develop into front-line starters, or we gamble that giving up both them for 2 years of Bedard will not lead to a career-ending injury for Bedard and that Bailey and Cueto will not win 15-20 games for Baltimore the next 6 years. My point is that a trade for Bedard is not guaranteed to lead the Reds to the playoffs, and that such a trade will really empty the farm of future pitching help.

In any case, the Hamilton trade would seem to indicate that any such trade is pretty dead. Andy McPhail did not get the trade offers(3 top prospects) he was expecting to get, so he has suggested Bedard is off the market and most likely Bedard will stay with
Baltimore, at least to start out on Opening Day.

757690
12-26-2007, 01:57 AM
I think I'm going to step into a hornet's nest w/ this comment, but I've been trying to think about this considering my perceived idea of what WK is trying to do.

1. If WK has been told to create a winning organization that will compete next season and keep his mindset w/in "small market" parameters. Then he's probably finished w/ major trades and will only do some minor tweaking in order to prepare for the 08 season.

2. If WK has been told to WIN next season at all cost, and don't worry about what's best for the team in the concept of a "small market" future, but think more along the lines of "mid-market." Then I think WK has a couple of more tricks up his sleeve.

I think that there is a third option.

3. If WK has been told to simply make whatever moves make the Reds a better ballclub, then he will try to add a big name pitcher if that deal makes the Reds better, but will not if the deal does not. He will add a few role players and pitchers if that makes the team better. If not, he won't.

I don't think that WK has been given any orders concerning whether or not the team is a "small" or "mid" market team. Or whether there is need to win now, or build for the future. Basically, it appears from recent events, that Cast has said that if a deal makes the team better, he will pay for it. Period.

So the Reds could get a big arm like Bedard or Santana, if the trade is a fair one, and that is the only criteria used.

That being said, IMHO, I think that any trade of Bailey, Cueto or Volquez would not make the team better. I think that there is a good chance that one of the three will be good enough this year to help the team make the playoffs.

Volquez really put it together last year, and was impressive in September. Bailey showed that when healthy, he could make quality starts. And Cueto has been dominant since signing with the Reds. I feel that at least one of them will put it together to be an effective #3 or 4 starter, which is all the Reds need to make the playoffs.

Therefore, since they are all young and cheap, and will be under Reds control for years to come, there is no reason to trade even one of them, let alone two of them for one starter who could get injured. And that is considering both next year, and the future.

Oxilon
12-26-2007, 04:32 AM
You are assuming that Bailey , Cueto, and Volquez will remain #4 and #5 starters. It is far more likely that Bailey becomes a #1, Cueto a #2, and we see Volquez become a #3. We can have Harang and Arroyo as our first 2 starters, and then wait for the kids to develop into the starters I see them becoming next year.

I disagree. It's far more likely that Bailey and Cueto top out at being an end of the rotation pitcher than becoming #1's and #2's respectfully. The majors are always filled with top pitching prospects that were "likely" to become #1's and #2's, but crashed and just became end of the rotation pitchers. The list is endless...Nick Neugabauer, Juan Cruz, Dennis Tankersly, Gavin Floyd, and even Mark Prior. I know I may sound very negative here, but the odds of Bailey, Ceuto, and Volquez all reaching their ceilings is very minimal. Heck, we would have to be thrilled if one of the three turns out to be an ace.

Bedard is already an ace. One that's entering his prime too. By acquiring Bedard, we know we're getting an ace as to where we are hoping that either Bailey, Cueto, or Volquez eventually turns into one, not to mention the odds are against them.

I like Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez, I really do. I think each has great talent and potential, but we have to be realistic here. I'd go with the safe bet and trade for Bedard, even if it means giving up Bailey and Cueto.

AmarilloRed
12-26-2007, 09:54 AM
We will agree to disagree. I realize that top pitching prospects do not always fulfill their potential, and that the Reds have a bad history of developing pitching prospects. We do agree that Bedard is an ace pitcher, but I have consistantly said that trading away our top pitching prospects will hurt us more long-term than it will help us in the short-term. I am impressed in what I have seen of Bailey and Cueto so far, and I believe that they will buck the odds and both develop into top-line pitching prospects. The very best thing might be to wait on Bedard. The price seems to be falling, and we might be able to get him for one of Bailey/Cueto plus a couple of B prospects. I would not be averse to a trade of that sort if we were able to sign Bedard to a LTC in the 72-hour window.

BucksandReds
12-26-2007, 10:53 AM
Why does no Bedard fan mention this. Erik Bedard has NEVER PITCHED 1 FULL SEASON IN THE MAJORS. Trade for 2 years of a dominating pitcher and watch him Mark Prior it and we end up with no Bedard, Cueto or Bailey. I'd personally go to the house of all of you trade for Bedard fans and key your car. Haren was the guy to get. No real health issues, an extra year under contract and a much lower price. Baltimore can keep Bedard. He's not worth what they want.

hippie07
12-26-2007, 12:19 PM
Looking at the team as far as what we need for 08-10 .... we need a solid #2 guy in order to truly be competitive.... the chances of Homer, Cueto, Volquez stepping up and being that guy next year is very, very, very slim = Arroyo has a better chance of stepping up and performing like a #2, but even that chance isn't good.

A #2 is what we NEED to win the pennant.. period - we may be competitive w/ a rag-tag team of hopes and dreams out on the mound... put its very unlikely that we'll actually WIN.

Currently, we have a #1, #3, and a whole bunch of #4/#5... Belisle could probably perform to the best of his abilities and still only be a #3 at best; Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez all have sick potential that makes us all drool but currently can only be expected to put up #4/5 type numbers - I can't hang my hat on potential, potential doesn't win ballgames - when we traded for Harang - how many of us knew he'd be the ace he is now... those who make it and those who don't is really a crap shoot ... If Bailey, Volquez, and Cueto all reach their potential and happen to do it for another team.. so be it... I won't lose sleep.. even if they did, how can we say they would have done the same thing here... I've seen us cut lose tons of crappy pitchers who go over to the Cards and make a nice career for themselves (Hancock, for example). So, whether or not they make it is like catching lightning in a bottle - highly touted prospects turn into great pitchers sometimes.... but definitely not all the time!

Anyway - we could keep all our young arms and NEVER get that #2 that we need to get us over the top... SO, back to the topic of this thread: Do we need Bailey & Cueto when they could possibly be traded and land us the #2 that we do need...???

For those that perhaps want to turn this into a pros/cons of Bedard thread, please don't because we can substitute any pitcher you want as long as it would fill the #2 need.

To me, the odds that Bailey, Cueto & Volquez will turn into gems is like catching lightning in a bottle - lets let our scouts make a determination of who's best out of the 3 and offer the other 2 to get the #2 that we so desperately need.

Harang
dominant #2
Arroyo
Volquez
Belisle

is a much better lineup than:
Harang
Arroyo (#3 forced into #2)
a #4/5
a #4/5
a #4/5

FreelFanatic
12-26-2007, 12:34 PM
I'll agree about potential, I said that all along with Kearns. And I'm not above packaging around one of these pitching prospects if a #2 is readily available. But, twofold, this isn't happening right now (apparently). First, the O's have backed off because they're not getting offered enough. And second, why take the chance of Bailey or Cueto developing into a possible #2 by dealing them both? There are more prospects in the organization to package together -- Votto, Encarnacion, Maloney, Wood, etc -- that are, to me, more available. How can the D-Backs get Haren with only one top-50 prospect, but when the Reds go after a Bedard, all of a sudden it takes Bruce, Bailey, Cueto, Hamilton, AND Votto? Of course this is an exaggeration. But instead of offering a package of three prospects to the O's that includes both Bailey and Cueto, why not offer one of them plus four or five mid-liners? Yes, I know the only way to get quality is to give quality, but Haren is definitely quality and this was Beane they were dealing with!

So I guess to sum up, I'm totally agreeing that all we have with Bailey, Cueto, Volquez, Maloney, etc., is potential...but don't give up ALL the potential to "win now," if at all possible.

757690
12-26-2007, 03:24 PM
Looking at the team as far as what we need for 08-10 .... we need a solid #2 guy in order to truly be competitive....

A #2 is what we NEED to win the pennant.. period - we may be competitive w/ a rag-tag team of hopes and dreams out on the mound... put its very unlikely that we'll actually WIN.



WHY????!!!!! What evidence do you have to make this point so strongly?!

Look at the last two years. There were 8 playoff teams in the NL, and only three had a solid #2 better than Arroyo. All three were eliminated in the first round.

That assertion is just hogwash. I admit that the Cubs do have a better rotation than the Reds, but the Reds' rotation is as good if not better than the Rockies last year, or the Cards the year before.

I am not saying that the Reds will win the Pennant, just that the lack of a dominant #2 is not the reason why they will not.

Vada Pinson Fan
12-26-2007, 05:26 PM
People seem to think this isn't even a possibility and that is IFAaron Harang develops arm or shoulder problems, you'd better hope we still have Bailey and Cueto not to mention all the other guys we currently have able to pitch in the starting rotation.

You have to have a backup plan if Harang or any other Reds pitcher goes on the DL. What backup plan do you have without Bailey or Cueto of any substance?

Rejoice in the fact our farm system has been blessed by scouts doing their jobs and knowing what top-notch talent is when they see it. Then having these drafted guys come through in fine fashion. Forget winning now (2008), at the costs you describe. Think long-term and you'll be happy you did! WK needs to see what kind of pitcher(s) he can acquire for our lesser players such as Ryan Freel, Scott Hatteberg (if we get a backup 1st baseman in return for Hatte) and possibly Matt Belisle as well as those outside the top 10 Reds minor leaguers.

Hope everyone had a Happy, Healthy and Safe Christmas!!!
Happy New Years to All!!!

Hondo
12-26-2007, 07:37 PM
I would not give Bailey, Cueto, and Stubbs for Bedard or Kazmir...

Look what Oakland recieved for Haren...

Quantity instead of Quality...

Stubbs, Wood, and 2 others for Bedard...

Bailey, EdE and 2 others for Santana...

That's your WIN NOW Rotation...

Santana
Harang
Bedard
Arroyo
Belisle

Thanks

hippie07
12-26-2007, 11:16 PM
WHY????!!!!! What evidence do you have to make this point so strongly?!

Look at the last two years. There were 8 playoff teams in the NL, and only three had a solid #2 better than Arroyo. All three were eliminated in the first round.

That assertion is just hogwash. I admit that the Cubs do have a better rotation than the Reds, but the Reds' rotation is as good if not better than the Rockies last year, or the Cards the year before.

I am not saying that the Reds will win the Pennant, just that the lack of a dominant #2 is not the reason why they will not.

Okay then.... a dominant #2 starter and a RH bat...
I can only tell you what the Reds need to win the pennant, comparing what the Reds need to what the Rockies need is like comparing apples and oranges... it's totally different.

That being said, I dont have any hard facts that "all the Reds need is a #2 starter" .... what I have is my opinion, plus the opinions I've read expressed on here, and the opinions of several baseball analysts I've read who've said "If the Reds land Bedard (for example) then they'll definitely become the favorite in the Central"....

So, You're right I have no facts - but that doesnt make my statement "hogwash" ... I think my statement is very logical... can we win the pennant w/ the pitching staff we have - yeah, its possible, can we win if we land a true #2 - well then, winning the pennant becomes probable... and therefore I can conclude that we NEED a #2 ... which was my point all along.

hippie07
12-26-2007, 11:22 PM
I would not give Bailey, Cueto, and Stubbs for Bedard or Kazmir...

Look what Oakland recieved for Haren...

Quantity instead of Quality...

Stubbs, Wood, and 2 others for Bedard...

Bailey, EdE and 2 others for Santana...

That's your WIN NOW Rotation...

Santana
Harang
Bedard
Arroyo
Belisle

Thanks

If that deal would work.... sign me up ... trouble is that is INCREDIBLY less than what those clubs are demanding - the thing is that the Twins and the O's know how valuable pitching is... so they're dangling their bait to see if anyone will "wow" them, I guess no one has and I guess these GM's aren't really serious about trading them...

However, the Haren trade has possibly set the tone for Beane is looking for ...
Stubbs, Wood, and 2 others might land us Blanton ... Hardin?

Do you think they'd take Bailey, Stubb, and Wood & 2 others for Blanton and Hardin... that'd be fun...

AmarilloRed
12-26-2007, 11:41 PM
It is an open question whether the Orioles are still willing to trade Bedard. The latest offer from the Mariners seemed less than impressive, and he most likely will be their Opening day starter.

757690
12-26-2007, 11:41 PM
Okay then.... a dominant #2 starter and a RH bat...
I can only tell you what the Reds need to win the pennant, comparing what the Reds need to what the Rockies need is like comparing apples and oranges... it's totally different.

That being said, I dont have any hard facts that "all the Reds need is a #2 starter" .... what I have is my opinion, plus the opinions I've read expressed on here, and the opinions of several baseball analysts I've read who've said "If the Reds land Bedard (for example) then they'll definitely become the favorite in the Central"....

So, You're right I have no facts - but that doesnt make my statement "hogwash" ... I think my statement is very logical... can we win the pennant w/ the pitching staff we have - yeah, its possible, can we win if we land a true #2 - well then, winning the pennant becomes probable... and therefore I can conclude that we NEED a #2 ... which was my point all along.

My apologies for calling your statement hogwash. Too strong.

Still, not to get into linguistics, but "need" technically means, "impossible without" or a requirement. So you should have left off the beginning part of that statement and just said, "we may be competitive w/ a rag-tag team of hopes and dreams out on the mound... but its very unlikely that we'll actually WIN."

I still disagree with that statement, with the evidence I stated earlier. Since five out of eight teams that made the NL Playoffs in the last two years did not have a dominant #2 starter, and four out of four that played for the pennant did not, and both teams that won the pennant did not, I think one can say that it is probable that the Reds or any team can win the pennant or go to the playoffs without a dominant #2.

hippie07
12-26-2007, 11:56 PM
Well, you're right in that we don't need a #2, but I think in order to not need a number 2, well have to have an above average rotation as a whole.
Like for instance... if we got Blanton in some reasonable deal ... I would view him as a #3+ (not a 2 but a little better than a 3) and I think Arroyo can be a #3+ so if we have two number three's that were above average... we'd have similar production w/o having a #2 ... so, you're right... maybe we don't NEED a #2, but I think we do NEED pitching improvement, maybe we'll receive a 3+ performance out of someone we already have .. its possible, but not probable.

If we could get a guy like Blanton and still hang onto Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez ... then no harm, no foul... I'd be just as excited.

Harang -#1
Arroyo - #3+
Blanton- #3+
Volquez- #4
Bailey - #4

(Belisle in pen)

Is alot better option than
Harang- #1
Arroyo- #3+
Belisle- #4/5
Volquez- #4
Bailey- #4

Which is, I think, the rotation we'll see if no acquisitions are made.

AmarilloRed
12-27-2007, 12:04 AM
It really is not fair to pigeonhole young and developing pitchers like Bailey, Belisle and Volquez as #4s and #5 starters. It is fair to suggest an established pitcher like Arroyo who has proven that he is a #2/#3 depending on the team's rotation. Bailey may have been less than impressive last year, but he was injured part of the time. He did show us a lot in September, and therefore I expect we will see more improvement from him and the other young starters than you are currently expecting.

757690
12-27-2007, 12:32 AM
Well, you're right in that we don't need a #2, but I think in order to not need a number 2, well have to have an above average rotation as a whole.
Like for instance... if we got Blanton in some reasonable deal ... I would view him as a #3+ (not a 2 but a little better than a 3) and I think Arroyo can be a #3+ so if we have two number three's that were above average... we'd have similar production w/o having a #2 ... so, you're right... maybe we don't NEED a #2, but I think we do NEED pitching improvement, maybe we'll receive a 3+ performance out of someone we already have .. its possible, but not probable.

If we could get a guy like Blanton and still hang onto Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez ... then no harm, no foul... I'd be just as excited.

Harang -#1
Arroyo - #3+
Blanton- #3+
Volquez- #4
Bailey - #4

(Belisle in pen)

Is alot better option than
Harang- #1
Arroyo- #3+
Belisle- #4/5
Volquez- #4
Bailey- #4

Which is, I think, the rotation we'll see if no acquisitions are made.

Agreed. Well put. No way the Red can win anything with the rotation they have now. The key will be finding the right additions for the right price.

hippie07
12-27-2007, 11:54 AM
It really is not fair to pigeonhole young and developing pitchers like Bailey, Belisle and Volquez as #4s and #5 starters. It is fair to suggest an established pitcher like Arroyo who has proven that he is a #2/#3 depending on the team's rotation. Bailey may have been less than impressive last year, but he was injured part of the time. He did show us a lot in September, and therefore I expect we will see more improvement from him and the other young starters than you are currently expecting.

I think that if Bailey progresses the way he's supposed to, he will end the year a solid #3 (just a hunch from watching his performance last year) ... however, someone who's planning the rotation at this very minute can not call Bailey a #3 - because we can't predict the future - he may explode to #1 status this year or he may repeat last year's #5 performance.... I think you view him as what he's capable of w/o the possible improvements ... and I think that makes him a #4 ... if he improves to a #3 during the course of the year - great!! However, a person planning the rotation can't EXPECT that. Otherwise you're basing your rotation on a wing and a prayer .... again, making winning possible, but not probable ...

I don't know about you all, but the last couple years I keep hearing announcers say "the reds are really over achieving" and then a few months later "the reds have come back to Earth" ..... for once, I'd like to see the Reds go into the season well-prepared to be winners "a Win-now pitching staff". That way if players over-perform... all the better, but we stilll have a chance of winning even if the team just plays up to expectations... and we're not banking on them playing beyond expectation.

roby
12-27-2007, 12:12 PM
Why does no Bedard fan mention this. Erik Bedard has NEVER PITCHED 1 FULL SEASON IN THE MAJORS. Trade for 2 years of a dominating pitcher and watch him Mark Prior it and we end up with no Bedard, Cueto or Bailey. I'd personally go to the house of all of you trade for Bedard fans and key your car. Haren was the guy to get. No real health issues, an extra year under contract and a much lower price. Baltimore can keep Bedard. He's not worth what they want.

"Mark Prior it" ... ia that anything like "Schruting it?" :D

AmarilloRed
12-27-2007, 09:51 PM
I think that if Bailey progresses the way he's supposed to, he will end the year a solid #3 (just a hunch from watching his performance last year) ... however, someone who's planning the rotation at this very minute can not call Bailey a #3 - because we can't predict the future - he may explode to #1 status this year or he may repeat last year's #5 performance.... I think you view him as what he's capable of w/o the possible improvements ... and I think that makes him a #4 ... if he improves to a #3 during the course of the year - great!! However, a person planning the rotation can't EXPECT that. Otherwise you're basing your rotation on a wing and a prayer .... again, making winning possible, but not probable ...

I don't know about you all, but the last couple years I keep hearing announcers say "the reds are really over achieving" and then a few months later "the reds have come back to Earth" ..... for once, I'd like to see the Reds go into the season well-prepared to be winners "a Win-now pitching staff". That way if players over-perform... all the better, but we stilll have a chance of winning even if the team just plays up to expectations... and we're not banking on them playing beyond expectation.

You are all underestimating the young starting pitchers we have now. I think we could easily see Bailey, Belisle and Vasquez all in the back end of the rotation and making contributions to this team. I would not be surprised if we made the playoffs this year with those 3 pitchers in the rotation. I don't mind if we trade one of them in an attempt to further improve our pitching rotation, but he have to be careful and not give away the farm.