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OnBaseMachine
06-08-2008, 12:37 PM
Reds: Alonso hasn't made any demands
Big-league deals put teams in tight spot
BY JOHN FAY | JFAY@ENQUIRER.COM

MIAMI - Chris Buckley, the Reds' scouting director, has heard the talk.

The pre-draft rumor mill had Yonder Alonso a) demanding a major-league contract and b) being represented by agent Scott Boras.

Wrong and wrong.

"That was out there," Buckley said. "But it's not true."

It may come to the point where Alonso asks for a big-league contract, but the Reds were in contact with him before the draft and they've heard no such demands.

"You never know until you get into negotiations," Buckley said.

The Reds can't begin talking contract with Alonso until his college season is complete. His University of Miami team is playing in a super regional.

"We just called to say hello on draft day," Buckley said. "But two of our scouts in the area know Yonder and his father well."

That tells me the Reds have a pretty good idea that Alonso is willing to sign. Baseball is in the kid's blood. His father, Luis, coached and played the game in Cuba.

A team in the Reds' position - rebuilding with young talent - can't afford to take a player they can't sign.

That said, if Alonso will only sign a big-league deal, I'd tell him good luck with his senior season at Miami.

Giving any draftee a big-league deal hamstrings a team. Not only does it cost you too much in terms of dollars, it costs you a spot on the 40-man roster.

The Reds went the major-league contract route with David Espinosa and Dane Sardinha in 2000.

How did that work out?

Espinosa never make it to the big leagues at all. Sardinha's went 0-for-5 in two games with the Reds.

The Reds ran into the same problem with Wily Mo Pena. They didn't draft him, but they traded for him knowing that he had signed a big league contract as a 17-year-old.

Once you sign a big-league deal, you have four options. Once you're out of options, a team can't send you to the minors without putting you on waivers. Pena was out of options well before he was ready to play in the big leagues. Pena was a much more valuable commodity than Espinosa or Sardinha, so the Reds kept him around and let him develop in the big leagues - not a very wise approach.

Alonso sounds like a polished hitter. You don't have a .576 on-base percentage - as Alonso does at Miami - unless you know what you're doing. He excelled in the Cape Cod League, which uses wood bats.

So there's a chance he'll be ready in 3 years, which is when he'd have to be in the majors if the Reds sign him to a big-league deal.

But that's not a risk I'd take.

Again, I think the Reds will get him signed for close to what his slot calls for.

One of the ongoing battles at recent owners meetings has been over commissioner Bud Selig's displeasure with teams paying well above what a player is slotted to receive.

One noteworthy case of that was last year when the Yankees gave Moeller's Andrew Brackman a $4.55 million big league contract, despite being picked 30th overall while coming off elbow surgery.

If Brackman doesn't work out, the Yankees are a team that can afford to make a $4.55 million mistake.

The Reds aren't.

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080608/COL09/806080442

RedsManRick
06-08-2008, 01:17 PM
Espinosa was a light hitting middle IF turned OF drafted out of High School. Sardinha was a light hitting C. Pena? 17 year old and raw as heck. None of those three should have been expected to climb through the system with any speed whatsoever.

Alonso is precisely the kind of guy who flies up the system. I wouldn't want to give him a big league contract either, but the only thing stupider than putting him on on the 40 man is letting him go back to school. This isn't a raw skills guy, but a polished hitter who could be in the majors by 2010. And if he's not ready after 3.5 years, then losing him won't be losing much.

dougdirt
06-08-2008, 01:25 PM
What the writer fails to note is that the reason those two were signed to 40 man rosters was so that their signing bonuses could be paid the following year because the Reds had no money.

Highlifeman21
06-08-2008, 01:53 PM
I just hope the Reds pony whatever Yonder asks for...

It seems that he was one of the best available on the board, although I know people wanted us to take Gordon Beckham instead.

I'd hate for the Reds to flush a #7 pick b/c they were too cheap.

NorrisHopper30
06-08-2008, 02:05 PM
I just hope the Reds pony whatever Yonder asks for...

It seems that he was one of the best available on the board, although I know people wanted us to take Gordon Beckham instead.

I'd hate for the Reds to flush a #7 pick b/c they were too cheap.

I hope so as well, it'll be worth it - from what i've seen on TV and in his videos he is a hell of a hitter.

redhawk61
06-08-2008, 02:13 PM
John Fay just lost even more of my respect, not that there was much there to begin with. He is a complete idiot

Joseph
06-08-2008, 02:37 PM
I preferred Beckham, and have criticized the Reds for passing on him. It is not however because I think Alonso is a bad player, just that he's not the right player for us.

Even my 'disapproval' of his pick, I see that he is exactly the type player who could be here in a year or two if they want him to be. Hitters just plain hit. Alonso is a hitter.

Hoosier Red
06-08-2008, 02:53 PM
John Fay just lost even more of my respect, not that there was much there to begin with. He is a complete idiot

Just curious there what makes you lose respect for Fay from that?
Actually as an article written for the unwashed masses, I think it does a pretty good job of explaining some intricacies involved with drafting and signing players.

redhawk61
06-08-2008, 03:01 PM
Just curious there what makes you lose respect for Fay from that?
Actually as an article written for the unwashed masses, I think it does a pretty good job of explaining some intricacies involved with drafting and signing players.

For his failure to do research such as about how dougdirt and redmanrick did.

Screwball
06-08-2008, 04:16 PM
That said, if Alonso will only sign a big-league deal, I'd tell him good luck with his senior season at Miami.


Dear John Fay,

I've put up with your ridiculous grammatical errors (you did major in journalism, right?) and what not for a long, long time. But your non-sensical arguments (most notably the one above) have gone too far. From now on I'm going to forward your work to firejoemorgan.com, in hopes that Ken Tremendous rips you a new one.

Sincerely,

Screwball

redhawk61
06-08-2008, 04:26 PM
Dear John Fay,

I've put up with your ridiculous grammatical errors (you did major in journalism, right?) and what not for a long, long time. But your non-sensical arguments (most notably the one above) have gone too far. From now on I'm going to forward your work to firejoemorgan.com, in hopes that Ken Tremendous rips you a new one.

Sincerely,

Screwball

glad to see someone feels the same way I do about him

Caveat Emperor
06-08-2008, 11:11 PM
Even my 'disapproval' of his pick, I see that he is exactly the type player who could be here in a year or two if they want him to be. Hitters just plain hit. Alonso is a hitter.

He'll move as quickly as his bat allows him to -- he's close to fully developed body-wise, the only limitation will be how he adjusts to facing better pitching as he goes up the ladder.

Not signing him should simply not be an option. He ought to be ready in 3 years, given his supposedly "advanced" bat, so pony up the roster spot if necessary.

redsmetz
06-08-2008, 11:23 PM
Espinosa was a light hitting middle IF turned OF drafted out of High School. Sardinha was a light hitting C. Pena? 17 year old and raw as heck. None of those three should have been expected to climb through the system with any speed whatsoever.

Alonso is precisely the kind of guy who flies up the system. I wouldn't want to give him a big league contract either, but the only thing stupider than putting him on on the 40 man is letting him go back to school. This isn't a raw skills guy, but a polished hitter who could be in the majors by 2010. And if he's not ready after 3.5 years, then losing him won't be losing much.

Based on the previous history, I was leery, but I was unaware of the intricacies of the situations. I did remember they were contractual issues and the Reds were ill served in both cases. But I'd agree with saying that Fay is too hasty in dismissing the option out of hand.

My son called me and told me about the unbelievable home run he hit today; low and away and to the opposite field.

ochre
06-09-2008, 01:54 AM
the lack of comp and second round picks should make signing him more likely. Should be money there and if they don't, it turns a moderately ok draft into a decidedly mediocre one.

Kind of makes me think that they really wanted a "sure" thing with that pick and had him as the one that was closest to being a sure thing.

mth123
06-09-2008, 10:50 AM
the lack of comp and second round picks should make signing him more likely. Should be money there and if they don't, it turns a moderately ok draft into a decidedly mediocre one.

Kind of makes me think that they really wanted a "sure" thing with that pick and had him as the one that was closest to being a sure thing.

I agree. I think the lack of other high level picks made the most sure thing of the draft a necessity. If they gamble and miss on Drew Stubbs/up the middle type with tons of tools but questions if he'll be able to hit, the entire draft is a bust with no supplementals and no 2nd round. I think Alonso gives them a guy who is most likely to be an average major leaguer for his position even if his position and lack of other tools limit his options. Its better/safer than coming away with Chad Mottola and a lot of what might have beens.

11larkin11
06-09-2008, 11:03 AM
I agree. I think the lack of other high level picks made the most sure thing of the draft a necessity. If they gamble and miss on Drew Stubbs/up the middle type with tons of tools but questions if he'll be able to hit, the entire draft is a bust with no supplementals and no 2nd round. I think Alonso gives them a guy who is most likely to be an average major leaguer for his position even if his position and lack of other tools limit his options. Its better/safer than coming away with Chad Mottola and a lot of what might have beens.

You could make an argument that Juan Duran was our second round pick.

Hondo
06-09-2008, 11:11 AM
You could make an argument that Juan Duran was our second round pick.

I still cannot find anyone in the Big Leagues talking about the Reds choosing Yonder over Smoak... Smoak was rated higher than Yonder and all the media says the Texas Rangers got a Steal? I would have prefered Smoak... Switch Hitter in the mold of Teixieria??? Come on... I just wish there was some articles out there explaining the Reds decision making process by choosing Yonder over Smoak?

lollipopcurve
06-09-2008, 11:15 AM
I just wish there was some articles out there explaining the Reds decision making process by choosing Yonder over Smoak?

You won't find it. You'll never hear an organization talking about the weaknesses of a player they did not draft. One day they might want to acquire that player. You'll only hear them talking about how much they like the players they got.

dougdirt
06-09-2008, 01:18 PM
I still cannot find anyone in the Big Leagues talking about the Reds choosing Yonder over Smoak... Smoak was rated higher than Yonder and all the media says the Texas Rangers got a Steal? I would have prefered Smoak... Switch Hitter in the mold of Teixieria??? Come on... I just wish there was some articles out there explaining the Reds decision making process by choosing Yonder over Smoak?

Ever occur to you that maybe the Reds knew what they were doing? Why do you need an explanation? They obviously thought he had a better package of things than Smoak did. I mean they apparently preferred a guy in the mold of Adrian Gonzalez over a guy in the mold of Teixeira. Seems easily defensible.

redhawk61
06-09-2008, 02:00 PM
I still cannot find anyone in the Big Leagues talking about the Reds choosing Yonder over Smoak... Smoak was rated higher than Yonder and all the media says the Texas Rangers got a Steal? I would have prefered Smoak... Switch Hitter in the mold of Teixieria??? Come on... I just wish there was some articles out there explaining the Reds decision making process by choosing Yonder over Smoak?

If you look at Alonso's skills at the plate he is vary comparable to Albert Pujouls.


So would you rather have Texeria or Pujouls

RedsManRick
06-09-2008, 02:04 PM
I think left-handed Edgar Martinez is the best all-around comp I've heard for Alonso. Obviously that's absolute best case scenario, but the skill set seems almost identical across the board.

I don't like the Pujols or Gonzalez comps because both of those are gold glover quality defenders. I know the comps say they're only comparing the bat, but I think it's hard to separate the value of the bat from the glove in our heads.

Think .320/.420/.520 upside from Alonso compared to .280/.360/.550 from Smoak -- something along those lines.

RedlegJake
06-09-2008, 02:22 PM
Martinez as a best case I'd take in a heartbeat. Edgar may have been the most underrated hitter of his generation.

dougdirt
06-09-2008, 02:22 PM
I think left-handed Edgar Martinez is the best all-around comp I've heard for Alonso. Obviously that's absolute best case scenario, but the skill set seems almost identical across the board.

I don't like the Pujols or Gonzalez comps because both of those are gold glover quality defenders. I know the comps say they're only comparing the bat, but I think it's hard to separate the value of the bat from the glove in our heads.

Think .320/.420/.520 upside from Alonso compared to .280/.360/.550 from Smoak -- something along those lines.
Does that take into account GABP though? I think a .520 SLG in GABP is low for an upside for Alonso.

bucksfan2
06-09-2008, 02:33 PM
I think left-handed Edgar Martinez is the best all-around comp I've heard for Alonso. Obviously that's absolute best case scenario, but the skill set seems almost identical across the board.

I don't like the Pujols or Gonzalez comps because both of those are gold glover quality defenders. I know the comps say they're only comparing the bat, but I think it's hard to separate the value of the bat from the glove in our heads.

Think .320/.420/.520 upside from Alonso compared to .280/.360/.550 from Smoak -- something along those lines.

IMO Pujols was a butcher of a defender when he first came up. And when he moved to 1b his defense wasn't good. IIRC he worked his tail off to become a great defensive first baseman.

I would love to see Alonso put up Edgar Martinez type numbers while also playing in the field. I hate to say it but from what I see of his swing and his body build he reminds me of Javy. I hope he turns into a little more athletic Prince Fielder with a little less power.

Hondo
06-09-2008, 03:01 PM
Ever occur to you that maybe the Reds knew what they were doing? Why do you need an explanation? They obviously thought he had a better package of things than Smoak did. I mean they apparently preferred a guy in the mold of Adrian Gonzalez over a guy in the mold of Teixeira. Seems easily defensible.

Look, they don't owe me an explanation... If you took my Post that way... I was trying to say, that all the Reports put Smoak above Yonder by 4-6 picks... I just Wanted to know why the Brain trust chose 1 over the other...

RedlegJake
06-09-2008, 03:06 PM
Look, they don't owe me an explanation... If you took my Post that way... I was trying to say, that all the Reports put Smoak above Yonder by 4-6 picks... I just Wanted to know why the Brain trust chose 1 over the other...

Alsonso was ahead of Smoak in several reports as well. Obviously the Reds scouts had Alonso rated as better than Smoak. Actually, Smoak had more question marks especially regarding his bat and well it would play in the pros.

RedsManRick
06-09-2008, 03:06 PM
Does that take into account GABP though? I think a .520 SLG in GABP is low for an upside for Alonso.

No, it didn't. I agree, his line drive power from the left side should play very well in GABP.

dougdirt
06-09-2008, 04:32 PM
Look, they don't owe me an explanation... If you took my Post that way... I was trying to say, that all the Reports put Smoak above Yonder by 4-6 picks... I just Wanted to know why the Brain trust chose 1 over the other...

You keep coming back to the point that you want a reasoning though.

Hondo
06-09-2008, 04:36 PM
You keep coming back to the point that you want a reasoning though.

Ok, it was a stupid question. Is that what you wanted me to Post?

I thought it was a reasonable question... But I suppose not...

Everyone keeps talking about the Stubbs chosen over Tim Lincecum, but I can't ask why the Reds chose Yonder over Smoak...

Geesch, if ya don't have the answer, don't reply to my post...

dougdirt
06-09-2008, 04:49 PM
Ok, it was a stupid question. Is that what you wanted me to Post?

I thought it was a reasonable question... But I suppose not...

Everyone keeps talking about the Stubbs chosen over Tim Lincecum, but I can't ask why the Reds chose Yonder over Smoak...

Geesch, if ya don't have the answer, don't reply to my post...

Its a fine question, but you contradicted yourself. You wanted an answer to the question, and the original one I gave was that they thought he was the best guy available. That went to you didn't want an explanation but wanted an explanation. I was just trying to figure out what you wanted? The Reds said before the draft they were taking the BPA. They then took Alonso and said they liked his entire package and track record. Thats probably the best answer you are going to get from them, or really anyone else for that matter because all we know is what they told us. Don't get so defensive, you were just really contradicting yourself with your post.

GoReds33
06-09-2008, 08:27 PM
I have voiced my displeasure of this pick numerous times, but not signing him would be a travesty. I love the agressivness on the part of the Reds, and the willingness to take on a pick with as many demands as this guy. At 21, I don't see it taking too long to get him to the majors. It's often a player who is younger, and with good defensive skills that progresses slower. The Reds know they have a polished hitter, and they know that his defense can develop in the majors if need be.

rotnoid
06-10-2008, 02:32 PM
I've heard and seen it mentioned elsewhere that given Jocketty's track record of trading prospects for established major leaguers that it's possible Alonso never sees GABP. If that's the plan, it certainly will play into the conversation about whether or not to give the guy a big league deal. He's much harder to move if the acquiring team has to clear a spot on the 40 man, IMO.

bucksfan2
06-10-2008, 03:18 PM
I've heard and seen it mentioned elsewhere that given Jocketty's track record of trading prospects for established major leaguers that it's possible Alonso never sees GABP. If that's the plan, it certainly will play into the conversation about whether or not to give the guy a big league deal. He's much harder to move if the acquiring team has to clear a spot on the 40 man, IMO.

I would be very very disappointed if the Reds and Jocketty would take that approach. You would hate to see that high of a draft pick be traded off before they reached their potental.

I think what Jocketty was so good at doing was evaluating talent and determining which guys were good enough to be come valuable major leaguers. The ones that Jocketty didn't value he did his best to move.

rotnoid
06-10-2008, 03:40 PM
I would be very very disappointed if the Reds and Jocketty would take that approach. You would hate to see that high of a draft pick be traded off before they reached their potental.

I think what Jocketty was so good at doing was evaluating talent and determining which guys were good enough to be come valuable major leaguers. The ones that Jocketty didn't value he did his best to move.

I agree that it would be extremely disappointing. I'm just throwing it out there. I like the pick, and I think he can become a solid ML player. But I think future intent will certainly play into the contract negotiations, if Jocketty comes as reported.