PDA

View Full Version : DDN article on Jared Burton (plus Reds still scouting Gerald Laird)



OnBaseMachine
04-07-2008, 11:33 AM
Burton finds his groove after rough spring

By Hal McCoy

Staff Writer

Sunday, April 06, 2008

CINCINNATI CINCINNATI Spring training for Jared Burton was a Nightmare on Euclid Street, the avenue that runs next to Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota, Fla.

New manager Dusty Baker was told how well Burton pitched last year as a Rule 5 pick, the great stuff he had to bedazzle batters. Burton wanted to show that, but he didn't. Not even close. In eight games, his earned-run average was 8.22 and he gave up 15 hits in 72/3 innings.

Some people had him lopped off the roster. He stuck, though, and what a difference the regular season makes. Burton pitched one inning of Sunday's 8-2 win over the Philadelphia Phillies and struck out one. Since the season began he has struck out seven of the 11 hitters he faced.

Redemption.

"The last four or five outings this spring, even though I was giving up runs, I was making good pitches," said Burton. "I was getting ground balls that went through holes. But it's a totally different feeling once the season begins and you put on that big-league uniform and the adrenaline gets flowing.

"I'm not going to be a guy who makes excuses, but I think the main thing was that having last year under my belt, when I struggled in spring training I was able to stay confident," he said. "I realized I could do it."

Bako steps up

The rumor mill (just where is that?) says the Reds are scouting the Texas Rangers and catcher Gerald Laird for a possible trade.

Why? With the way Paul Bako is catching, with a .286 batting average that includes a game-winning hit, who needs a catcher?

Baker is more than thrilled with what Bako has done, especially catching the games pitched by the young Latinos, Johnny Cueto and Edinson Volquez.

"He is one of the best non-roster signings that we made and I know we made quite a few (Bako, Corey Patterson, Mike Lincoln, Kent Mercker, Johnny Cueto)," Baker said. "Imagine where we'd be without him, with Ross down and Valentin hurting. Bako is calling a great game, throwing guys out and getting some timely hits."

Acting lessons?

Baker said Jeff Keppinger is a good hitter, but a poor actor.

In the fourth inning, Keppinger fouled one off his shin that rolled up the third-base line. He stood at the plate, believing the ball was foul. No umpire saw the ball ricochet off Keppinger's foot, so he was called out when the throw went to first.

"I could see the ball come off his shin guard, but it didn't help that he didn't do a very good job of acting. Must not have hurt because it hit off that pad he wears."

Keppinger said it did hurt, "It hit off my foot and I have a bruise on my toe. I guess the umpires didn't see it, everybody makes mistakes. They're the best of the best, too. I didn't know the ball was in play and I didn't see it until the ball hit third base."

Quote of the day

"It was good to see Ken Griffey Jr. get on the board (with his first home run) because he has been swinging the bat well. So has Adam Dunn, without much result, so it would be good to get him on the board (today)." Baker, talking about the struggles of his two run-producers, Griffey (.263) and Dunn (.176).

http://www.daytondailynews.com/s/content/oh/story/sports/pro/reds/2008/04/06/ddn040708spredsnotesweb.html

camisadelgolf
04-07-2008, 12:00 PM
Laird would be an upgrade, but I doubt it would be big enough of an upgrade to justify what the Rangers would want in return. Let's just face it: Almost every team's catcher stinks.

Jpup
04-07-2008, 12:12 PM
Laird would be an upgrade, but I doubt it would be big enough of an upgrade to justify what the Rangers would want in return. Let's just face it: Almost every team's catcher stinks.

yeah, not everyone can have a Jorge Posada.

OldXOhio
04-07-2008, 12:21 PM
Laird would be an upgrade, but I doubt it would be big enough of an upgrade to justify what the Rangers would want in return.


I don't see Wayne paying up for Laird's hot start either. Been there done that with Ross.

IslandRed
04-07-2008, 12:26 PM
Hal could be working off old information, the Laird rumors were flying a few weeks ago. Having said that, I don't doubt the Reds are keeping close tabs on any catcher that's perceived to be available at some point. Active trade talks are unlikely -- teams generally don't deal much between the start of the season and June -- but despite Bako's good start and working well with the pitchers and Ross' imminent return, there's still a decent chance the position turns into a black hole. If the Reds are contending, they'll need to be ready to make a move.

westofyou
04-07-2008, 12:30 PM
When the Rangers tank and call up Salty... say June... then the Reds can chase Laird

RedlegJake
04-07-2008, 12:47 PM
Burton is solid - he's just young. He'll have some rough spots too I'm sure but he has the talent. And the experience he is getting now is invaluable because it allows the Reds to bring on more youngsters like Viola and Roenicke later without overloading the staff with inexperienced pitchers.

Bako isn't going to hit at this clip all year but I'm coming around. He IS Gerald Laird folks, why give up something of value for a guy who doesn't produce any better? I'm beginning to think Bako and Ross would be a decent platoon behind the plate. I don't understand the FO's fascination with Valentin, though. He is NOT the pinch hitter they seem to think he is, and he's a bad catcher. I'd rather cut him or trade him for cash/PTBNL.

Steve4192
04-07-2008, 12:57 PM
Acting lessons?

Baker said Jeff Keppinger is a good hitter, but a poor actor.

In the fourth inning, Keppinger fouled one off his shin that rolled up the third-base line. He stood at the plate, believing the ball was foul. No umpire saw the ball ricochet off Keppinger's foot, so he was called out when the throw went to first.

"I could see the ball come off his shin guard, but it didn't help that he didn't do a very good job of acting. Must not have hurt because it hit off that pad he wears."

Keppinger said it did hurt, "It hit off my foot and I have a bruise on my toe. I guess the umpires didn't see it, everybody makes mistakes. They're the best of the best, too. I didn't know the ball was in play and I didn't see it until the ball hit third base."


Yep.

I thought it was hilarious when the FSO camera crew kept showing the ball, being held by a guy in the stands, with a big black mark where Kep's bat got a piece of it. Grande & Welsh were having a field day with that.

LoganBuck
04-07-2008, 04:36 PM
Hal also mentioned that an American League scout was watching Homer Bailey last week.

Bailey for Laird plus chaff?

Yuck

cincyinco
04-07-2008, 05:21 PM
Is micheal young available? Young and laird for bailey and agon? Kepp is your super sub!

Spitball
04-07-2008, 06:14 PM
Is micheal young available? Young and laird for bailey and agon? Kepp is your super sub!

I'd say Keppinger is doing a pretty good Michael Young impression right now. Both hit well but are better suited to second base. I'm not sure how Laird is much of an upgrade on Ross or Bako. Laird has excellent footwork and a great arm but has a poor approach at the plate. I'd rather keep Bailey than opt for any lateral moves.

reds44
04-07-2008, 06:16 PM
Hal also mentioned that an American League scout was watching Homer Bailey last week.

Bailey for Laird plus chaff?

Yuck
Bailey for Salty?

OnBaseMachine
04-07-2008, 06:17 PM
Bailey for Laird would be awful. Bailey for Salty would be a nice deal.

Highlifeman21
04-07-2008, 06:27 PM
Bailey for Salty?

Salty might have more upside than Laird, but Laird's ready now.

Which C would you rather have for Bailey?

I think I lean slightly towards Salty, rather than Laird.

Chip R
04-07-2008, 06:28 PM
I've herd some negatives about Salty's defense. Is he just a younger version of Javy?

WMR
04-07-2008, 06:35 PM
Homer and Juan Castro for Joe Mauer. :redface:

Highlifeman21
04-07-2008, 06:45 PM
Homer and Juan Castro for Joe Mauer. :redface:

Lay off the sauce.

Why would it cost us Homer? Juan Castro alone is enough for Joe Mauer. ;)

WMR
04-07-2008, 06:50 PM
Lay off the sauce.

Why would it cost us Homer? Juan Castro alone is enough for Joe Mauer. ;)

Maybe we can throw in Stubbs and get Nathan back as well.

Highlifeman21
04-07-2008, 07:47 PM
Maybe we can throw in your butt-buddy Stubbs and get Nathan back as well.

Nah, they can keep Nathan.

We'll take Neshek instead.

But you're right, we can definitely throw in Stubbs.

deltachi8
04-07-2008, 08:30 PM
When the Rangers tank and call up Salty... say June... then the Reds can chase Laird

That would be the plan I would use as well, assuming the Reds have not tanked by then either.

I am fine with Bako if he plays above average defense and calls a good game.

fearofpopvol1
04-07-2008, 08:48 PM
Salty for Bailey, if Texas would bite, is an interesting idea.

Reason being is that you could try Salty behind the plate. If he doesn't perform well defensively, you could put him at 1B. He is a switch hitter. If the Reds don't plan to re-sign Dunn, you could move Votto to LF and put Salty at 1st. It may (or may not) solve the catching problem, but again, it depends a lot on whether or not the Reds try to re-sign Dunn. It would still help the team though.

membengal
04-08-2008, 09:49 AM
I've been pining for Salty for a year now. If there was any way to get him (or Teagarden) out of Texas, that's what the Reds should be doing. In fact, given how happy the Rangers are with Hamilton, and we with Volquez, there should be a free and easy line of communication and trust established between the respective front offices.

lollipopcurve
04-08-2008, 10:02 AM
In fact, given how happy the Rangers are with Hamilton, and we with Volquez, there should be a free and easy line of communication and trust established between the respective front offices.

Exactamundo. That's how business gets done -- you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. It's not about ripping other teams off or outsmarting others. When you develop an actual surplus, you want to have as many avenues as possible on which to shop it.

A trade that works for both teams is the goal.