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View Full Version : Harang to have MRI on Thursday/Possibly hurt?



Dan
07-09-2008, 01:07 PM
The Real McCoy (http://www.daytondailynews.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/dayton/cincinnatireds/entries/2008/07/08/oh_the_pain_and_the_agony.html)


So what’s the matter with Aaron Harang?

Something, obviously. Something bad, obviously.

Harang usually has the Chicago Cubs nibbling Cracker Jack out of his palm in Wrigley Field, where he was 4-1 for his career when he walked to the mound Tuesday.

What followed was painful to watch, unless you are a Bleacher Bum from Wrigleyville, almost as painful as what Harang MUST be feeling in his arm.

Joseph
07-09-2008, 01:25 PM
If he's hurt we need to figure that out now and get whatever corrective measures required enacted so he can be healthy next season.

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 01:30 PM
I'd place him on the DL for at least a couple weeks. He hasn't been the same since that relief appearance. He's too valuable to this organization to risk further injury to him. Shut him down for a couple weeks or more and see what that does for him.

LincolnparkRed
07-09-2008, 01:33 PM
I'd place him on the DL for at least a couple weeks. He hasn't been the same since that relief appearance. He's too valuable to this organization to risk further injury to him. Shut him down for a couple weeks or more and see what that does for him.

Right the Pads did it with Peavy.

flyer85
07-09-2008, 01:35 PM
the season is shot ... put him on the DL and let him rest.

RichRed
07-09-2008, 01:51 PM
the season is shot ... put him on the DL and let him rest.

What??? We've got a pennant to win!

MrCinatit
07-09-2008, 02:01 PM
What??? We've got a pennant to win!

...in 2011 :D

Joseph
07-09-2008, 02:02 PM
...in 2011 :D

Not if we keep screwing around like this. :)

Big Klu
07-09-2008, 02:05 PM
I wouldn't put him on the DL yet, but I would skip his next start on Sunday in Milwaukee. The Reds can make Sunday a bullpen day, since everyone should be available on the day before the All-Star break, and they can manipulate the rotation coming out of the break so that Harang wouldn't pitch until Monday, July 21 vs. San Diego. They could do something like this:

7/9 @ CHI -- Cueto
7/10 @ CHI -- Arroyo
7/11 @ MIL -- Fogg
7/12 @ MIL -- Volquez
7/13 @ MIL -- Bullpen (Affeldt?)
7/14 ***All-Star Break***
7/15 ***All-Star Break***
7/16 ***All-Star Break***
7/17 v. NY -- Cueto
7/18 v. NY -- Arroyo
7/19 v. NY -- Volquez (gets a couple of extra days after All-Star appearance)
7/20 v. NY -- Fogg
7/21 v. SD -- Harang

If Volquez doesn't pitch in the all-Star Game, then he can pitch the first game on July 17, and Cueto and Arroyo can be pushed back. If Harang still isn't ready by July 21, then place him on the disabled list retroactively.

LoganBuck
07-09-2008, 02:14 PM
I wouldn't put him on the DL yet, but I would skip his next start on Sunday in Milwaukee. The Reds can make Sunday a bullpen day, since everyone should be available on the day before the All-Star break, and they can manipulate the rotation coming out of the break so that Harang wouldn't pitch until Monday, July 21 vs. San Diego. They could do something like this:

7/9 @ CHI -- Cueto
7/10 @ CHI -- Arroyo
7/11 @ MIL -- Fogg
7/12 @ MIL -- Volquez
7/13 @ MIL -- Bullpen (Affeldt?)
7/14 ***All-Star Break***
7/15 ***All-Star Break***
7/16 ***All-Star Break***
7/17 v. NY -- Cueto
7/18 v. NY -- Arroyo
7/19 v. NY -- Volquez (gets a couple of extra days after All-Star appearance)
7/20 v. NY -- Fogg
7/21 v. SD -- Harang

If Volquez doesn't pitch in the all-Star Game, then he can pitch the first game on July 17, and Cueto and Arroyo can be pushed back. If Harang still isn't ready by July 21, then place him on the disabled list retroactively.

Why not just put him on the DL and have an extra arm or two made available for spot starts and bullpen duty? It is only two more days without him. Give Bailey and/or Thompson a spot start.

cumberlandreds
07-09-2008, 02:16 PM
What??? We've got a pennant to win!


Nah, not this year. But 4th place is in sight! ;)

CTA513
07-09-2008, 02:29 PM
Hurt or not hes not going to pitch good if all he has is his fastball.

Big Klu
07-09-2008, 02:39 PM
Why not just put him on the DL and have an extra arm or two made available for spot starts and bullpen duty? It is only two more days without him. Give Bailey and/or Thompson a spot start.

Well, if Harang is ready to go sooner, he could make one of the starts against the Mets. But your idea is a good one, too. I don't want either Bailey or Thompson up right now, though. However, I am willing to take a look at Maloney. If not Maloney, then bring up Belisle--he is what he is, but he's a known quantity.

SMcGavin
07-09-2008, 02:43 PM
Send him to the 15 day DL. Bring up Maloney for a couple of starts (and tell him it's just for a couple of starts). Harang gets his rest, the Reds brass gets a look at a guy they are probably unsure about, and Maloney gets a small taste of the majors in a controlled setting. In the words of Michael Scott, win-win-win.

Strikes Out Looking
07-09-2008, 03:04 PM
Send him to the 15 day DL. Bring up Maloney for a couple of starts (and tell him it's just for a couple of starts). Harang gets his rest, the Reds brass gets a look at a guy they are probably unsure about, and Maloney gets a small taste of the majors in a controlled setting. In the words of Michael Scott, win-win-win.

You don't need to put him on the dl at this point because for the next week, he is only schedule one start--as someone else said let the bullpen handle this game and then after the all star break tenatively schedule him to go in the 5th game--you can always put him on the dl retroactively if you need him to rest longer.

Spring~Fields
07-09-2008, 03:10 PM
the season is shot ... put him on the DL and let him rest.

You make too much sense.
Especially with the investment that they have in Harang.

CTA513
07-09-2008, 03:22 PM
From Lance McAlisters blog:


RHP Aaron Harang still is bothered by stiffness and soreness in his right forearm and is returning to Cincinnati tonight.
He will be examined tomorrow, including an MRI.

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 03:27 PM
If he's still bothered by it then why in the world was he allowed to pitch last night?

SMcGavin
07-09-2008, 03:30 PM
You don't need to put him on the dl at this point because for the next week, he is only schedule one start--as someone else said let the bullpen handle this game and then after the all star break tenatively schedule him to go in the 5th game--you can always put him on the dl retroactively if you need him to rest longer.

The only point of a bullpen day is just to get through the game. Letting Maloney pitch gives the Reds information they can use to help the future.

RedsBaron
07-09-2008, 03:32 PM
If he's still bothered by it then why in the world was he allowed to pitch last night?

Why in the world did Dusty Baker use him a relief role in the extra inning game, on short rest?

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 03:35 PM
Why in the world did Dusty Baker use him a relief role in the extra inning game, on short rest?

Only Dusty knows. Thank goodness that Votto made that error to extend the inning and allow Adrian Gonzalez a chance to hit that 3-run homerun or else Volquez could have possibly thrown many more pitches and hurt his arm too.

RichRed
07-09-2008, 03:36 PM
If he's still bothered by it then why in the world was he allowed to pitch last night?

We're in WIN NOW(ish) mode. NL Pennant, here we come!

bucksfan2
07-09-2008, 03:48 PM
If he's still bothered by it then why in the world was he allowed to pitch last night?

I don't see where you place the blame on Dusty. I place it more on Dick Pole. Pole is the pitching coach and saw him warm up. Its just plain bad when Brantley in the booth is able to describe what is ailing Harang yet Pole can't. Harang had to change fastballs and couldn't throw his breaking pitches at all. Pole should have noticed that early and shut him down.

RichRed
07-09-2008, 04:09 PM
I don't see where you place the blame on Dusty. I place it more on Dick Pole. Pole is the pitching coach and saw him warm up. Its just plain bad when Brantley in the booth is able to describe what is ailing Harang yet Pole can't. Harang had to change fastballs and couldn't throw his breaking pitches at all. Pole should have noticed that early and shut him down.

Dusty and Pole are both complicit in leaving a pitcher in the game to throw 108 pitches when he clearly had something wrong, either mechanical or otherwise.

Kc61
07-09-2008, 04:22 PM
Is there really a need to blame the manager or coach for everything that goes wrong in baseball?

Nobody really knows why Harang is ineffective and, if injured, whether it relates to the relief outing. Sheer speculation. He allowed five runs and ten hits in the outing before the relief outing. Maybe something was wrong then.

Harang said he was healthy last night. He had two extra days off and seemed to be throwing with good velocity. His control was off, but that doesn't mean his night should have been cut short.

The Reds have used Harang heavily the last few years. They could have babied him, put him on a 95 pitch count, figured they're losing anyway why risk the pitcher. But when competing, teams don't tend to think that way.

I hope the guy is all right, but I don't blame anyone for this -- except perhaps the collective team mindset over several years of working Harang so hard. Perhaps somebody should have stepped in long ago to say "take it easy on this guy."

edabbs44
07-09-2008, 04:43 PM
Is there really a need to blame the manager or coach for everything that goes wrong in baseball?

Nobody really knows why Harang is ineffective and, if injured, whether it relates to the relief outing. Sheer speculation. He allowed five runs and ten hits in the outing before the relief outing. Maybe something was wrong then.

Harang said he was healthy last night. He had two extra days off and seemed to be throwing with good velocity. His control was off, but that doesn't mean his night should have been cut short.

The Reds have used Harang heavily the last few years. They could have babied him, put him on a 95 pitch count, figured they're losing anyway why risk the pitcher. But when competing, teams don't tend to think that way.

I hope the guy is all right, but I don't blame anyone for this -- except perhaps the collective team mindset over several years of working Harang so hard. Perhaps somebody should have stepped in long ago to say "take it easy on this guy."

If injured, the blame most likely goes on the luck of the draw. The Twins babied Liriano when he came up a few years ago, starting him in the pen and all that. That didn't work.

bucksfan2
07-09-2008, 04:43 PM
Dusty and Pole are both complicit in leaving a pitcher in the game to throw 108 pitches when he clearly had something wrong, either mechanical or otherwise.

The trainer and medical staff said he was ok, Harang said he was ok, and Pole said he was ok. What is Dusty supposed to do? Have an MRI machine at his disposal to tell him the exact moment Harang's forearm is not up to pitching shape.

Dusty used Harang like he would in any other start. He rode him as long as could due to the circumstances. 108 pitches isn't a lot for a guy like Harang.

Blitz Dorsey
07-09-2008, 05:17 PM
I'd place him on the DL for at least a couple weeks. He hasn't been the same since that relief appearance. He's too valuable to this organization to risk further injury to him. Shut him down for a couple weeks or more and see what that does for him.

Exactly. Time to get Harang ready for 2009 IMO.

reds44
07-09-2008, 05:20 PM
If injured, the blame most likely goes on the luck of the draw. The Twins babied Liriano when he came up a few years ago, starting him in the pen and all that. That didn't work.
Liriano also had awful mechanics. He was going to get hurt no matter what.

Will M
07-09-2008, 05:27 PM
I'd place him on the DL for at least a couple weeks. He hasn't been the same since that relief appearance. He's too valuable to this organization to risk further injury to him. Shut him down for a couple weeks or more and see what that does for him.

I also agree here.

Joseph
07-09-2008, 05:32 PM
It gets worse fellas....he's having an MRI tomorrow.


Aaron Harang will fly back to Cincinnati from Chicago to undergo an MRI following his career-high seven-walk performance on Tuesday night, the team announced on Wednesday.

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 05:39 PM
Tommy John surgery for Harang?

By Hal McCoy | Wednesday, July 9, 2008, 03:51 PM

Ah, we all knew it, didn’t we?

Aaron Harang returned to Cincinnati on Wednesday and will have an MRI on his right forearm, the forearm that he said didn’t bother him when he walked seven Cubs in 4 1/3 innings Tuesday, the forearm that caused him to miss his turn Saturday against the Washington Nationals.

Prediction, here? Hate to be a predictor of gloom, but it sounds like Tommy John ligament replacement surgery in his immediate future.

I’m no doctor, but it’s past history. Remember when Ryan Dempster pitched for the Reds and was so bad fans called him Ryan Dumpster? Well, when he was with the Reds he lost command of his pitches - just like Harang - because of forearm tightness. He ended up with Tommy John.

Harang has not been the same since he threw 108 pitches in 5 1/3 innings in San Diego May 22, then came back three days later to pitch four innings in that 18-inning game the Reds lost.

I WOULD HAVE had this report quicker, but when I got to the Wrigley Field press box today every seat was occupied. By tourists. And the tour guide kept them there for 20 minutes with tales of Wrigley.

They just started this recently - tours during homestands, at $25 a head.

With their payroll, the Cubs probably need the money. After all, they only sell out every home game.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/dayton/cincinnatireds/

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 05:43 PM
I can only hope Hal's prediction is wrong. We need Harang healthy and strong if the Reds are going to compete in 2009.

membengal
07-09-2008, 05:45 PM
Completely unsurprising. The Reds have abused that particular asset in ways that make reasonable people blush for two + years now.

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 05:46 PM
Dusty used Harang like he would in any other start. He rode him as long as could due to the circumstances. 108 pitches isn't a lot for a guy like Harang.

108 pitches is a TON for anyone in less than 5 innings. Much less a guy who as recent as 3 days ago was pushed back for arm issues. This team is beyond ridiculous. They hire a guy with a track record of absuing pitchers, to run a staff that has a young pitching staff for the most part and in half a year he has taken a guy who was a 3 year running #1 and ruined him by throwing him 63 pitches in extra innings on 2 days rest then starting him 3 days later on short rest.... as much as I hate to say it.... what the heck did you expect?

Degenerate39
07-09-2008, 05:46 PM
TJ surgery is what I first thought of when I heard he was having forearms problems.

Gainesville Red
07-09-2008, 05:47 PM
C. Trent's thinking the same thing.



I hope I'm wrong, I really do.

Tomorrow, we'll hear news about Aaron Harang and the MRI that he's scheduled to undergo.

There are three words I don't want to hear -- "ulnar collateral ligament." That means Harang will be mentioned in the same breath as a guy who won 288 games in the big leagues, and that's not a good thing.

Two years ago, Eddie Guaradado complained of forearm stiffness, so did Carl Pavano and so did the Marlins' Josh Johnson.

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 05:48 PM
More on Harang, lineup
Posted by JohnFay at 7/9/2008 5:16 PM EDT on Cincinnati.com

Aaron Harang did indeed feel fine during and immediately after last night's start.

But he woke at 5:30 this moring with pain and stiffness to his forearm. The pain is similar to and in the same area of the forearm that Harang had after his last start. The Reds gave him three extra days of rest ot remedied that.

"Obviously, it wasn't completely out of there," Hrang said. "I felt great yesterday warming up and long toss. No discomfort at all. Everything felt crisp."

Harang went back to sleep this morning. He woke a couple of hours later and called trainer Mark Mann. Mann spoke with Dusty Baker and Walt Jocketty. It was decided that Harang will return to Cincinnati to re-examined and get an MRI.

Harang said he isn't worried that something is seriously wrong.

"No, just cause from what (Dr. Tim Kremchek) did examinig last week . . . all the stuff he did was testing the ligament. With everything he did, if there was something wrong with the ligament, I would have screaming at him. He thought it was more muscle. Hopefully, it's something minor that a good amoung of rest will take care of," Harang said.

Harang will make his start schedule for Sunday.

It lines up so either Daryl Thompson or Homer Bailey could make it. Thompson went six innings and allowed one run on six hits for Louisville last night. Bailey went six innings and four runs on six hits the night before. Bailey threw only 82 pitches; Thompson threw 109.

http://news.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?category=blog07&plckController=Blog&plckScript=blogScript&plckElementId=blogDest&plckBlogPage=BlogViewPost&plckPostId=Blog%3ae57bcc87-152a-4f72-96fb-cc08b1f396efPost%3a8c3c7e1d-e05c-47af-a99f-5ba62046d10b&sid=sitelife.cincinnati.com

Cyclone792
07-09-2008, 05:49 PM
All the Reds have done is run Harang's arm through a meat grinder for the last 3.5 years. TJ surgery would be exactly what this organization deserves for that type of abuse.

Arroyo stinks this year and Harang's now going down this route. And people wonder why I've been on the Reds for years now with abusing those two guys.

cincinnati chili
07-09-2008, 05:52 PM
I see two instances of malpractice reference on this thread

Baker using Harang on short rest-relief for 5 innings in a relatively meaningless regular season game.

McCoy speculating that Harang needs Tommy John surgery because one time when Ryan Dempster experienced forearm tightness he too needed Tommy John surgery.

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 05:52 PM
The Reds need to invest into the machine that the Red Sox use to test their pitchers strength before and after games. What I want to know is, what in the world allows you to continue letting a guy who has been pushed back because of arm discomfort pitch in a game for 108 pitches when his velocity is 5-7 MPH lower consistently for the entire game? What is a bigger red flag flying that something is up than a lack of control and loss in velocity?

OnBaseMachine
07-09-2008, 05:57 PM
The Reds need to invest into the machine that the Red Sox use to test their pitchers strength before and after games. What I want to know is, what in the world allows you to continue letting a guy who has been pushed back because of arm discomfort pitch in a game for 108 pitches when his velocity is 5-7 MPH lower consistently for the entire game? What is a bigger red flag flying that something is up than a lack of control and loss in velocity?

It's really unbelievable. They finally have some pitching in the majors and now they are trying their best to destroy it. Hiring Dusty Baker after what he did to his pitchers in Chicago was just a bad decision by the Reds FO, whether it be Wayne Krivsky or Bob Castellini's decision.

membengal
07-09-2008, 06:03 PM
All the Reds have done is run Harang's arm through a meat grinder for the last 3.5 years. TJ surgery would be exactly what this organization deserves for that type of abuse.

Arroyo stinks this year and Harang's now going down this route. And people wonder why I've been on the Reds for years now with abusing those two guys.

Bolded for truth.

Look, IF something is wrong with Harang's arm, let me be clear, I don't think Dusty has generally abused him this year. The ONE exception, and it is a glaring one, was the insane May 25th fiasco in relief. Stupid on every level.

But this team, especially under Narron, piled up pitches and innings on a true asset at a rate that was insane for several years now. Harang consistently showed up on Pitcher Abuse Points lists, and should have been a marker for increased scrutiny as the year unfolded. That is why the May 25 thing was crazy in particular.

A forward thinking organization would have dealt Harang last off-season when he would have had crazy good value. Billy Beane, say, would have done that. In a second. In fact, he did, with Dan Haren. This organization, as usual, is caught betwixt and between, always reacting, always three steps slow.

Laughable, were it not so painful.

Spring~Fields
07-09-2008, 06:14 PM
It gets worse fellas....he's having an MRI tomorrow.

Wow, lets hope for the best, that this leads to less severe alternatives.

nate
07-09-2008, 06:20 PM
Well, the hits just keep on rolling, eh, Reds fans?

edabbs44
07-09-2008, 06:29 PM
The Reds need to invest into the machine that the Red Sox use to test their pitchers strength before and after games. What I want to know is, what in the world allows you to continue letting a guy who has been pushed back because of arm discomfort pitch in a game for 108 pitches when his velocity is 5-7 MPH lower consistently for the entire game? What is a bigger red flag flying that something is up than a lack of control and loss in velocity?

I'd go out on a limb and say that, if that is the diagnosis, this last start wasn't the straw that broke the camel's back. If he threw 20 pitches last night I would bet the result would be the same.

Spring~Fields
07-09-2008, 06:34 PM
I'd go out on a limb and say that, if that is the diagnosis, this last start wasn't the straw that broke the camel's back. If he threw 20 pitches last night I would bet the result would be the same.

Good point.

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 06:37 PM
I'd go out on a limb and say that, if that is the diagnosis, this last start wasn't the straw that broke the camel's back. If he threw 20 pitches last night I would bet the result would be the same.

That may be true, but it should have never been close to that point if this team had even the slightest clue of what it was doing. Of course we are Cincinnati sports fans, so that won't happen to us. Our owners are morons who hire other morons.

edabbs44
07-09-2008, 06:43 PM
That may be true, but it should have never been close to that point if this team had even the slightest clue of what it was doing. Of course we are Cincinnati sports fans, so that won't happen to us. Our owners are morons who hire other morons.

I tend to agree, but I think it is almost impossible to try and corrleate this to one game or even an entire season.

Zambrano might be a freak, but everyone is just waiting for this guy to blow out his arm. Hasn't yet. The Twins treated Liriano with kid gloves. Didn't work out so well.

It is such a crapshoot that I think it isn't even worth trying to blame anyone in particular. His arm might be banged up...time to suck it up and deal.

But one thing is for sure...we are potentially witnessing the downside of locking up pitching when you don't necessarily have to.

chicoruiz
07-09-2008, 06:45 PM
I wouldn't put Harang on the DL quite yet. I'd option Cueto to AAA after tonight's start, and bring Bailey or Thompson up for Sunday. Harang can always go on retroactively, and Cueto could get 10 days rest and still be back in time to pitch the weekend after the ASG.

Of course, Dusty's solution will probably be to pitch Cueto on Sunday on 3 days rest. Cueto's will be the next arm to be fragged, mark my words...

RedsManRick
07-09-2008, 06:51 PM
I've always understood most pitching injuries to be wear & tear as opposed to single incident. What's not been clear is how long it takes for that wear & tear to accrue.

Let's say that a ligament is now 60% torn and requires surgery. When did it hit 50%? When did it hit 20%? How quickly does that progress? Can a single 130 pitch night cause 5% more tearing whereas an 80 pitch night causes 0%?

I'm certainly no Dusty defender, but could he really have done the damage to Harang in 3 months or did he just carry the ball over the goal line?

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 06:52 PM
I tend to agree, but I think it is almost impossible to try and corrleate this to one game or even an entire season.

Zambrano might be a freak, but everyone is just waiting for this guy to blow out his arm. Hasn't yet. The Twins treated Liriano with kid gloves. Didn't work out so well.

It is such a crapshoot that I think it isn't even worth trying to blame anyone in particular. His arm might be banged up...time to suck it up and deal.

But one thing is for sure...we are potentially witnessing the downside of locking up pitching when you don't necessarily have to.

Liriano may have been treated with kid gloves, but throwing that many sliders with terrible mechanics is going to lead to an injury no matter what you do and everyone knew that.

All I know is that it boggles my mind that so many fans that are just passionate about baseball have so much more knowledge than the men that seemingly make the every day baseball decisions for the Reds. Boggles my mind.

RedsManRick
07-09-2008, 07:01 PM
Liriano may have been treated with kid gloves, but throwing that many sliders with terrible mechanics is going to lead to an injury no matter what you do and everyone knew that.

All I know is that it boggles my mind that so many fans that are just passionate about baseball have so much more knowledge than the men that seemingly make the every day baseball decisions for the Reds. Boggles my mind.

When it comes to allowing bad mechanics, there's a school of thought that suggests you don't correct a guy out of his ability to dominate hitters.

On BP today, it was suggested that the Reds aggressively promoted and traded BJ Ryan because they thought his arm would explode. Rather than correct his delivery, they got as much value as they could for it. His arm held up for a number of years before exploding and the Orioles got a lot of value from it, but it eventually exploded. You could argue that's precisely the route the Cubs took with Kerry Wood, the Angels are taking with Frankie Rodriguez, and the Mariners are taking with Felix Rodriguez

The Twins may have been thinking, better get dominant pitching for as long as we can than try to "fix" him and get none at all. It simply happens to be a bet that they lost.

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 07:03 PM
I don't think you should try to change the mechanics of a guy who has used bad mechanics for a long period of time (particularly college pitchers) because the muscles are built up a specific way and changing the mechanics could lead to a weakened arm and injury.... but there are certain guys you can baby all you want and its still likely their arm is going to blow up, like Liriano.

Roy Tucker
07-09-2008, 07:08 PM
He hasn't been right all year and has been *really* not right after his SD relief stint.

After a couple batters last night, I said "he's not right, this isn't just an off-night, there is something wrong".

RedsManRick
07-09-2008, 07:10 PM
I don't think you should try to change the mechanics of a guy who has used bad mechanics for a long period of time (particularly college pitchers) because the muscles are built up a specific way and changing the mechanics could lead to a weakened arm and injury.... but there are certain guys you can baby all you want and its still likely their arm is going to blow up, like Liriano.

But let's say you change Liriano's mechanics and he loses 4 mph and some bite. He goes from an all-star to a scrub. Was it worth it? Or do you just let it fly and hope he holds up for a little while so you can get some value out of him?

I realize that's not always the choice, that ideally you find a middle ground, but I have to imagine there's a bit of that sort of thinking.

dougdirt
07-09-2008, 07:13 PM
But let's say you change Liriano's mechanics and he loses 4 mph and some bite. He goes from an all-star to a scrub. Was it worth it? Or do you just let it fly and hope he holds up for a little while so you can get some value out of him?

I realize that's not always the choice, that ideally you find a middle ground, but I have to imagine there's a bit of that sort of thinking.

I wouldn't change Liriano pre surgery. Post surgery it sounds like the Twins wanted to and he told them no.

SMcGavin
07-09-2008, 07:16 PM
McCoy speculating that Harang needs Tommy John surgery because one time when Ryan Dempster experienced forearm tightness he too needed Tommy John surgery.

Glad to see I wasn't the only one who noticed this. Harang may or may not be seriously injured, I have no idea, but McCoy's rationale for throwing out the Tommy John surgery "prediction" is ridiculous.

blumj
07-09-2008, 07:22 PM
Glad to see I wasn't the only one who noticed this. Harang may or may not be seriously injured, I have no idea, but McCoy's rationale for throwing out the Tommy John surgery "prediction" is ridiculous.
Everyone in the media throws around TJ surgery whenever they hear forearm tightness. It's irresponsible, but really common.

Kc61
07-09-2008, 08:08 PM
What this shows more than anything is that it is impossible to depend on a couple of pitchers throwing major innings year after year after year.

I don't have the stats but Oakland depended on Hudson, Mulder and Zito. Brilliantly, Beane traded them for value. Hudson is doing well. Mulder has had rotator cuff surgery. Zito went to SF and has struggled.

Some pitchers, like a Greg Maddox, are so fundamentally sound that they seem to last forever. But in most cases, you need lots of pitching depth because arms are fragile.

Roy Tucker
07-09-2008, 08:11 PM
But let's say you change Liriano's mechanics and he loses 4 mph and some bite. He goes from an all-star to a scrub. Was it worth it? Or do you just let it fly and hope he holds up for a little while so you can get some value out of him?

I realize that's not always the choice, that ideally you find a middle ground, but I have to imagine there's a bit of that sort of thinking.

I suspect this may be happening to Homer Bailey.

edabbs44
07-09-2008, 09:19 PM
I'm starting to believe that many people are talking out of the wrong end when it comes to how and why injuries occur. I am sure that mechanics and usage does contribute, but there is no hard and fast rule as to what is right and what is wrong.

Lincecum was a surgery waiting to happen...now he is known as "The Freak" on the cover of SI, talking about how his mechanics are great.

Prior....exact opposite. Some people, however, love to bust out the pitch counts regarding Prior when Dusty's name comes up. Others blame the mechanics. Maybe it was both?

Overuse? Sometimes it could be valid...but if people can prove that the pitcher wasn't overused, then it has to be the mechanics. Like Liriano.

My point is that some people seem to have to link a surgery/arm problem to a specific event, whether it be mechanics, overuse or even a relief appearance. Bottom line is that sometimes it is just inevitable.

GAC
07-09-2008, 09:28 PM
The Reds have to have a more viable reason to put him on the DL other then his W-L record.

They need to do the MRI and determine what is wrong (if anything), and approached it from there.

BuckeyeRedleg
07-09-2008, 10:02 PM
Only this pathetic organization could mess up an Aaron Harang.

Well done, everyone.

Joseph
07-09-2008, 10:08 PM
The Reds have to have a more viable reason to put him on the DL other then his W-L record.

They need to do the MRI and determine what is wrong (if anything), and approached it from there.

C'mon, we put Fogg on the DL because of his ERA, why can't we DL Harang over his record?

cincinnati chili
07-09-2008, 10:36 PM
I'm no doctor and not even a "medhead" like Will Carroll and others of his ilk. And those of you who are saying that we don't know if Dusty caused Harang's injuries (if any) are correct.

However, it has been my observation and understanding that it's common for pitchers to get injured when they "reach back for a little extra." By pitching a guy on short rest or forcing him to throw too many high-stress high-pitch innings in one game, you increase the likelihood of injury.

Dusty (whose hiring I did not vehemently oppose, unlike the majority of this board) put Harang at unnecessary risk in the long relief outing. While I can't prove that it's the cause of his problems, it was a bad move nonetheless.

When Dusty does stuff like that it makes me agree with the majority of people here who think the sky is falling.

Cedric
07-09-2008, 10:53 PM
It will become fact within days that Aaron Harang was ruined by Dusty Baker and this organization. Sometimes pitchers get hurt and sometimes it's random. We just don't have enough information to know either way.

Unassisted
07-09-2008, 11:04 PM
Remember that Jocketty considers him tradable. Putting him on the DL makes him untradable at the time Walt wants to be making trades. For that reason, I predict a DL trip won't happen unless there's a serious problem.

Stormy
07-09-2008, 11:10 PM
It will become fact within days that Aaron Harang was ruined by Dusty Baker and this organization. Sometimes pitchers get hurt and sometimes it's random. We just don't have enough information to know either way.

Every aspect of his performance has been completely night and day since the ill-advised relief stint on 2 days of rest, followed by the ensuing start on short rest again. Yes, Harang had a bad outing prior to that relief stint, but that was in the midst of his otherwise consumate consistency through his first 10 starts. Since that time, his command, mechanics, velocity, and overall performance have completely fallen off a cliff. Extreme, inexplicable coincidence, that a guy who has been a fine-tuned, durable workhorse for the past 3+ seasons, crashes and burns immediately following those abusive outings?

LoganBuck
07-10-2008, 12:33 AM
If he is hurt my guess is that Bobby Livingston fills his rotation slot after the Allstar game. We probably see Homer/Thompson start the game before the Allstar game.

SteelSD
07-10-2008, 12:49 AM
Every aspect of his performance has been completely night and day since the ill-advised relief stint on 2 days of rest, followed by the ensuing start on short rest again. Yes, Harang had a bad outing prior to that relief stint, but that was in the midst of his otherwise consumate consistency through his first 10 starts. Since that time, his command, mechanics, velocity, and overall performance have completely fallen off a cliff. Extreme, inexplicable coincidence, that a guy who has been a fine-tuned, durable workhorse for the past 3+ seasons, crashes and burns immediately following those abusive outings?

Following the stupididy that was his relief outing, Harang has produced the following:

ERA: 7.31
K/9: 7.31
BB/9: 3.05
HR/9: 2.03

Harang's Pitches per IP have been 18.77 since that relief appearance, even though his Pitches per Start look normal at 104. He's made it through the 6th Inning three times in eight Starts. There isn't a pitcher alive who needs to throw nearly 19 pitches per Inning who can make it through 6 Innings consistently and coupled with the dramatic increase in his BB rate and HR rate after that fateful relief appearance, I'd have a hard time believing that there isn't something physically wrong with the guy.

Harang has been ridden hard and put away wet over the past couple of seasons, but Baker's nutjob call that produced a four-Inning stint on two days rest versus the Padres was all kinds of stupid. And then to throw him again on three days rest versus against Pittsburgh? Bizarre and potentially career-threatening for Harang. Not that Baker cares, of course. He'll find someone else or something else to blame. It wasn't really him. After all, he played with Hank Aaron.

WVRedsFan
07-10-2008, 12:56 AM
Dusty said tonight after the game that Harang would miss his next start and the first start after the AS break, which is makes me feel there is bad news coming. They might use Affeldt in his place. They might bring up Thompson, Bailey, Belisle, Maloney, or Livingston to fill in, but none of those can replace the ace, which puts us in a bad position.

As much as has been made about Dusty ruining Harang with one relief appearance, I don't buy that. I'm no Baker apologist, and like many, didn't really like the hire, but this is silly. As I understand it, Harang volunteered to pitch in the marathon game in San Diego, so Dusty didn't go looking for him as an option. I also know that he only pitched 5 innings in his outing just previous to the game. Harang's injury, if indeed there is one, comes from years of abuse. Herein lies the falacy of having a team with so little pitching that managers are tempted to let the starter go a little farther since the bullpen is so horrible in order to win. Dusty has been with this team a total of five months, and whatever damage was done happened in the past. It was Harang's time to be injured. Therein lies the falacy in banking on one man and not building up the rest of the ptiching staff, a sin committed by Jim Bowden, Dan O'Brien, and Wayne Krivsky. Unless Walt Jocketty makes some positive moves soon, he falls into that same category.

Dusty can't fill out a lineup card worth a warm pitcher of spit, but there are no more Waren Spahns of the world who can pitch 200+ innings for 20 years. They just don't exist. The secret is having a bullpen that is dependable enough that after 100 pitches is reached, you can go confidently to them and feel secure enough. We haven't had that for years and still do not as we get four or five hits and four runs a game.

I have to hope that Harang is Ok and only needs rest, but I fear the worst, but let this be a lesson. Dave Miley and Jerry Narron had a lot to do with what has happened to Aaron Harang.

WVRedsFan
07-10-2008, 01:03 AM
Following the stupididy that was his relief outing, Harang has produced the following:

ERA: 7.31
K/9: 7.31
BB/9: 3.05
HR/9: 2.03

Harang's Pitches per IP have been 18.77 since that relief appearance, even though his Pitches per Start look normal at 104. He's made it through the 6th Inning three times in eight Starts. There isn't a pitcher alive who needs to throw nearly 19 pitches per Inning who can make it through 6 Innings consistently and coupled with the dramatic increase in his BB rate and HR rate after that fateful relief appearance, I'd have a hard time believing that there isn't something physically wrong with the guy.

Harang has been ridden hard and put away wet over the past couple of seasons, but Baker's nutjob call that produced a four-Inning stint on two days rest versus the Padres was all kinds of stupid. And then to throw him again on three days rest versus against Pittsburgh? Bizarre and potentially career-threatening for Harang. Not that Baker cares, of course. He'll find someone else or something else to blame. It wasn't really him. After all, he played with Hank Aaron.

I agree, Steel. It was stupid. But if the team scored more runs and had a more dependable bullpen...

Send Dusty packing for all I care. It makes no difference to me, but this club is ripe for problems. No offense means more pitchers doing more than they have to so that the club can win. tonight, if Johnny Cueto had thrown a game similar to what Zambrano did, we'd still be playing. No, wait. We wouldn't because someone would have eeked out a run to win the game. Witness Weathers tonight or any other part of our bullpen. Without runs and hits (someone said we had a team BA of .220 lately), you lose. Poor eam construction is what we have right now. And I don't see an end despite the ignorance of one Dusty Baker.

AmarilloRed
07-10-2008, 01:03 AM
I want to see how the MRI turns out. His year may yet be ruined, but we can only know after he is examined. I agree the signs certainly look ominous, though.

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 01:43 AM
Reds hoping Harang's arm just needs rest

By Hal McCoy

Staff Writer

Thursday, July 10, 2008

CHICAGO — When he pitched for Cincinnati, Ryan Dempster went through problems similar to those now facing Aaron Harang — which have earned the Reds' ace a trip back to Cincinnati for an MRI today, July 10, on his throbbing forearm.

Dempster pitches for the Chicago Cubs, is an All-Star, and pitched like one Tuesday in beating Harang and the Reds, 7-3.

"Harang wasn't himself," Dempster said. "Our hitters said it, too. Seven walks? He'd rather have a hitter knock one out of the park than walk him."

Harang missed a start Saturday against Washington, but pitched Tuesday and gave up six runs, five hits, seven walks and two home runs, throwing 108 pitches in 41/3 innings. He said after the game his forearm was fine, but it wasn't fine Wednesday morning.

"I woke up at 5:30 and it had stiffened up," Harang said. "It was the same area as before. Obviously, it is something that didn't completely go away.

Harang stayed up for a couple of hours, then fell back asleep and awoke at 10 a.m., his forearm still barking, so he called trainer Mark Mann. Team physician Dr. Tim Kremchek, manager Dusty Baker and General Manager Walt Jocketty were notified, and the MRI was planned.

Asked if he is concerned, Harang said, "No, because when Doc examined me last week it was ligament stuff, and he said if there was something wrong I would have been screaming at him. He thought it was more muscle than anything. Hopefully it is something minor that a good amount of rest and rehab treatment will take care of."

Baker remains optimistic.

"Doc thinks it is still in the muscle, but we're doing a precautionary MRI to see if anything is wrong," he said. "Maybe he just needs rest."

Who pitches Sunday?

With Harang unable to pitch Sunday in Milwaukee, who goes there: Daryl Thompson or Homer Bailey? Thompson would be right on turn because he pitched Tuesday for Class AAA Louisville and allowed one run and six hits in six innings of an 8-2 win over the Lehigh Valley IronPigs.

Baker, though, wouldn't rule out Bailey.

"It lines up for Homer, too, and they said he threw very well his last couple of times out," said Baker. "We'll talk to our minor-league people who have seen both and come up with the one most qualified."

Bailey is 4-7 with a 4.42 ERA at Louisville but was 0-3 with an 8.76 ERA in three starts with the Reds. He hasn't won a game anywhere since April 27. Thompson is 4-0 with a 2.98 ERA at Louisville but was 0-2 with a 6.91 ERA in three starts for the Reds.

http://www.daytondailynews.com/s/content/oh/story/sports/pro/reds/2008/07/09/ddn071008spredsnotes.html

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 01:55 AM
Dusty can't fill out a lineup card worth a warm pitcher of spit, but there are no more Waren Spahns of the world who can pitch 200+ innings for 20 years. They just don't exist.

Not to nitpick, but Maddux, Schilling, Clemens, and Glavine have done this and Johnson and Mussina are darn close. They do exist. They're really freaking rare, but they're out there.

Not every pitcher is destined to fall apart. Again, I wonder if Dusty is more straw that broke the camels back than not, but we shouldn't just shrug it off as if every pitcher is doomed anyways

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 08:39 AM
Harang to have MRI on Thursday/Possibly hurt?

What time are the results due to be announced by the team, if they are disclosed.

RichRed
07-10-2008, 09:39 AM
Not to nitpick, but Maddux, Schilling, Clemens, and Glavine have done this and Johnson and Mussina are darn close. They do exist. They're really freaking rare, but they're out there.

Not every pitcher is destined to fall apart. Again, I wonder if Dusty is more straw that broke the camels back than not, but we shouldn't just shrug it off as if every pitcher is doomed anyways

Right. And I don't know how anyone can argue that allowing Harang to throw 108 pitches Tuesday night made any kind of sense. DustyPole are paid a lot of money to know better than that, or at least to be able to see what's going on right in front of their eyes. The Reds hitters, the Cubs hitters, the fans - everyone noticed that Harang was not right and yet he was allowed to stay in long enough to throw 108 pitches and walk seven batters.

Look, no one is claiming the Reds would be a playoff team if a different manager were calling the shots. This club is awful on too many levels to count, but that should never excuse utter incompetence by a manager and/or pitching coach. They still have a job to do, and if they show repeatedly that they're not up to the task, then there's the door.

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 09:46 AM
Right. And I don't know how anyone can argue that allowing Harang to throw 108 pitches Tuesday night made any kind of sense. DustyPole are paid a lot of money to know better than that, or at least to be able to see what's going on right in front of their eyes. The Reds hitters, the Cubs hitters, the fans - everyone noticed that Harang was not right and yet he was allowed to stay in long enough to throw 108 pitches and walk seven batters.


Agree wholeheartedly.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 09:54 AM
Right. And I don't know how anyone can argue that allowing Harang to throw 108 pitches Tuesday night made any kind of sense. DustyPole are paid a lot of money to know better than that, or at least to be able to see what's going on right in front of their eyes. The Reds hitters, the Cubs hitters, the fans - everyone noticed that Harang was not right and yet he was allowed to stay in long enough to throw 108 pitches and walk seven batters.

Look, no one is claiming the Reds would be a playoff team if a different manager were calling the shots. This club is awful on too many levels to count, but that should never excuse utter incompetence by a manager and/or pitching coach. They still have a job to do, and if they show repeatedly that they're not up to the task, then there's the door.

The Reds haven't won in 8 years. They have become perennial losers.

The owner wants to win. Maybe not be playoff caliber yet, but to win.

He hired Baker and then Jocketty out of frustration with losing. He didn't hire a young manager with instructions to build for 2012. He hired an experienced manager who has won before with instructions to start winning, to get the team out of the doldrums, to whatever extent feasible.

Baker is a competitive baseball man. He doesn't manage to lose. He doesn't view himself as a caretaker for the next guy.

How does Baker try to win? By relying on the guys on whom he has the most confidence. Harang is one of them. So he has tended to rely more heavily on Harang.

At one point this season he was in a pinch. He had a long extra inning game and had used a lot of relievers in the series. So he leaned on Harang and came back with him too soon. It turned out to be an error in judgment. But Dusty obviously felt Harang could handle it.

Last week, according to the press, Harang had been checked out by the team doctor who didn't think anything major was wrong. They gave him two extra days off. The pitcher said he was fine.

When Harang is out there, Dusty doesn't like to remove him prematurely. He views Harang as an excellent pitcher who should pitch as much of the game as possible.

Folks should put themselves in Baker's shoes. What is he to do? Start working his bullpen in the fifth inning of every game to save his starters from injury? Then we'd be complaining he is killing the bullpen.

Dusty is far from perfect. Personally, I would never have sent Cueto out for the seventh last night, I would have absolutely pulled him after six. But consider the circumstances. He's been asked to try and win, he's a competitive manager, and he's trying to win a respectable number of games. And given the personnel, he's been fairly successful.

membengal
07-10-2008, 09:57 AM
Every aspect of his performance has been completely night and day since the ill-advised relief stint on 2 days of rest, followed by the ensuing start on short rest again. Yes, Harang had a bad outing prior to that relief stint, but that was in the midst of his otherwise consumate consistency through his first 10 starts. Since that time, his command, mechanics, velocity, and overall performance have completely fallen off a cliff. Extreme, inexplicable coincidence, that a guy who has been a fine-tuned, durable workhorse for the past 3+ seasons, crashes and burns immediately following those abusive outings?

Bumped so it won't get lost. Great, succinct points.

membengal
07-10-2008, 09:57 AM
Following the stupididy that was his relief outing, Harang has produced the following:

ERA: 7.31
K/9: 7.31
BB/9: 3.05
HR/9: 2.03

Harang's Pitches per IP have been 18.77 since that relief appearance, even though his Pitches per Start look normal at 104. He's made it through the 6th Inning three times in eight Starts. There isn't a pitcher alive who needs to throw nearly 19 pitches per Inning who can make it through 6 Innings consistently and coupled with the dramatic increase in his BB rate and HR rate after that fateful relief appearance, I'd have a hard time believing that there isn't something physically wrong with the guy.

Harang has been ridden hard and put away wet over the past couple of seasons, but Baker's nutjob call that produced a four-Inning stint on two days rest versus the Padres was all kinds of stupid. And then to throw him again on three days rest versus against Pittsburgh? Bizarre and potentially career-threatening for Harang. Not that Baker cares, of course. He'll find someone else or something else to blame. It wasn't really him. After all, he played with Hank Aaron.


Bumped so it won't get lost, part II.

Numbers. Hard to ignore.

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 10:04 AM
KC, I think you make some good points. I would summarize them thusly:

Castellini and Baker : Winning
Lenny from "Of Mice and Men" : Mice

Kc61
07-10-2008, 10:14 AM
Bumped so it won't get lost. Great, succinct points.


Well, they are succinct.

You can't dismiss the Friday night against SD with some platitude like the game was in the midst of "consummate consistency" or whatever. Go back and read the game thread of May 22, two days before the relief outing. Some statements in that thread:

"Harang is getting beat up by the worst lineup I have yet seen this year"

"Harang gets an "F" today"

"Harang just lost his stuff and command completely tonight"

Why did he suddenly lose his stuff and command two nights before the relief outing? Was Harang healthy then?

It all remains speculation, nothing more.

Cooper
07-10-2008, 10:18 AM
Dusty completely lost his mind when managing that game (the 18 inning game in San Diego).

Why didn't someone step in and say that his scheduling of Harang was compounding the mistake? Most of this board knew it was short sighted.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 10:22 AM
But one thing is for sure...we are potentially witnessing the downside of locking up pitching when you don't necessarily have to.

Look at the bigger picture too. This is a risk with building your team around a pitching staff. Naturally, you need pitching to win, but we are now seeing a potential downside to commiting too much of your resources into the rotation.
We have spent a lot of money and trade resources to assemble this rotation.

Right now, we have Harang possibly hurt and Arroyo struggling. Two guys that most of us prior to the season thought were "money in the bank", and there was no reason to think otherwise.

This is why the Rangers were willing to trade Volquez for Hamiton.. Note, this is not Wayne bashing. I'm not saying we lost or won the that trade. I'm just saying that when you look at it from the Rangers' point of view, it makes sense. The Rangers are a long way from contending. One opinion is that the impact position player has a greater chance of staying healthy and productive 5 years down the road, as opposed to the stud pitcher. There's not a whole lot of guys like Glavine, Maddux, etc that are great pitchers over a 10+ year span.

Cooper
07-10-2008, 10:32 AM
If you are gonna lock up your pitchers to big contracts then it might make a lot of sense to protect them in such a way that you are insured they will not get injured.

Management would/should go out of there way to protect that investment.

edabbs44
07-10-2008, 10:32 AM
Bumped so it won't get lost, part II.

Numbers. Hard to ignore.

I'm curious how one would explain the rough start he had before the relief appearance or the dominant one he had versus Boston afterwards.

If his arm was shot because of the SD game, it would have been tough to dominate Boston.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 10:34 AM
Every aspect of his performance has been completely night and day since the ill-advised relief stint on 2 days of rest, followed by the ensuing start on short rest again. Yes, Harang had a bad outing prior to that relief stint, but that was in the midst of his otherwise consumate consistency through his first 10 starts.

He was bad the start right before the relief appearance.
The relief appearance was May 25, right?
On May 22, he only lasted 5 innings, gave up 10 hits and 5 ER.

Looking at right before the relief outing
May 22 .. bad
May 17.. good against weak Cleveland team
May 12 .. Marlins. Ok, but not great, 4 ER in 7IP.

There's no way to know for sure.. Maybe he hurt his arm in the Cleveland game or the May 22 game (or even earlier) and just continued to pitch through it..

Pitch counts during that low rest period:
May 22.. 103 pitches
May 25 .. 63 pitches
May 29 .. 73 pitches.

That seems like a reasonable workload. Sure, they ran him out a day early on his May 29 start, but they pulled him after 73 pitches.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 10:40 AM
If you are gonna lock up your pitchers to big contracts then it might make a lot of sense to protect them in such a way that you are insured they will not get injured.

Management would/should go out of there way to protect that investment.

Dusty has been watching Harang's pitch counts a lot more closely than Narron and Miley ever did...

The relief outing is not the cause of this injury. I agree with other posters that it was probably the culmination of years of pitching a fairly heavy workload. I'm sure Dusty will get blamed, but it would've probably happened this year, regardless of who was managing.

Always Red
07-10-2008, 10:49 AM
Well, they are succinct.

You can't dismiss the Friday night against SD with some platitude like the game was in the midst of "consummate consistency" or whatever. Go back and read the game thread of May 22, two days before the relief outing. Some statements in that thread:

"Harang is getting beat up by the worst lineup I have yet seen this year"

"Harang gets an "F" today"

"Harang just lost his stuff and command completely tonight"

Why did he suddenly lose his stuff and command two nights before the relief outing? Was Harang healthy then?

It all remains speculation, nothing more.


I'm curious how one would explain the rough start he had before the relief appearance or the dominant one he had versus Boston afterwards.

If his arm was shot because of the SD game, it would have been tough to dominate Boston.

Stop making sense! ;)

We're always looking for the easy blame (not just here, but everywhere in society).

Sometimes crap just happens.

Contrary to what some believe, pitch counts and the theory of pitcher abuse due to a certain number of pitches are not a science at all. Check out what Daisuke Matsuzaka (and the entire Japanese major leagues) and Nolan Ryan have to say about it sometime.

I know it's easy to blame Dusty for nearly everything, and we all want to because he's such an easy target for a thinking fan.

FWIW, here's what Hal has to say about it on his blog today:

http://www.daytondailynews.com/blogs/content/shared-gen/blogs/dayton/cincinnatireds/


First of all, enough of the oft-repeated and unfounded opinions that Dusty Baker ruined Mark Prior and Kerry Wood when he managed the Cubs.

Knowledgeable folks from Chicago dispute that Baker ruined Wood or Prior. Hey, Wood and Prior dispute it themselves, so that’s good enough for me. Wood remains close friends with Baker.

And by the way, maybe somebody should ruin some more pitchers. The guy Baker supposedly ruined, Wood, recorded his 23rd save of the season against the Reds Wednesday.

Somebody ruin me, please.

It just isn’t true, but fans who believe everything they hear keep repeating it. Both Wood and Prior were experiencing arm problems before Baker even landed in Chicago.

So let’s not transfer those thoughts to Cincinnati and blame Baker for anything that happens to Aaron Harang.

Over the last three years Harang has pitched 211 2/3 innings, 234 1/3 innings and 231 2/3 innings - and Baker wasn’t here. So if something dastardly comes out of the MRI of Harang’s forearm today, don’t blame Dusty.

That said, so much for the Reds becoming born again contenders on this trip.

For those who got excited because the Reds swept four from the Washington Unnaturals, well, those Nationals are like the old Washington Senators, about whom it was once written: “Washington - first in war, first in peace and last in the American League.” (There were in the American League then).

The Reds are now playing Real Baseball teams and, frankly, they aren’t good enough to compete. They aren’t close to being as good as the Cubs and probably not close to being good as the Brewers.

What I feared on this trip was that the Reds might do something goofy like win five or six or four of six and delude themselves and their fans into thinking they can still compete this year for the ol’ gonfalon (ask your dad, kids).

But by losing their first two to the division-leading Cubs, it is self-evident that - all together now - “This is not a very good baseball team.”

Now general manager Walt Jocketty can start looking to made trades for 2009 and beyond.

But he has a major problem: the players he would like to trade are not what other teams want, mostly overpriced and underachieving. The untouchables are the players other teams want and Jocketty can’t trade those if he is trying to build.

He has a major challenge. He worked magic in St. Louis and I’ve been looking for his sorcerer’s hat. Haven’t found it yet. Not even a magic wand. He’ll have to do it on his own.

OK, it’s nearly midnight and Wrigley Field is empty and the press box is a sauna. Outside in Wrigleyville, one can still hear the fans singing, “Go Cubs go, Go Cubs go,” a catchy tune fans begin singing after every win.

I’ve been hearing it a lot lately. Even in my dreams.

I can remember back in The Big Red Machine Days when Cincinnati TV icon Ruth Lyons had folks on her show singing, “The Whole Town’s Batty, About Cincinnati, What a Team, What a Team, What a Team.”

Right now I’m saying the same thing: “What a team.”

flyer85
07-10-2008, 10:57 AM
Over the last three years Harang has pitched 211 2/3 innings, 234 1/3 innings and 231 2/3 innings - and Baker wasn’t here.which should scream at the manager ... don't abuse this guy, treat him with kid gloves. And certainly don't pitch him 4 innings in relief on 1 days rest and then bring him back 4 days later. It's all about mitigating risk.

Tony Cloninger
07-10-2008, 11:03 AM
Both sides makes good points.....and there is no point in bringing up his very good relief stint after that terrible start .....or the BOS game (the Sox lineup was weak...according to some) or CLE (they are a 1968 version of hitting)..or the okay FLA start......and the low pitch counts before this game.

The people who detest Baker...and I mean it reads like pure hatred for the guy...will never be convinced that it was not beacuse of the relief stint.
They are already convinced that Volquez and Cueto are headed for the same fate.

However....Baker did himself no favors by doing that beacuse it justifies all the fears that people have of him destroying pitchers.

I did have a problem with him prolonging Harang's start this time.....he should have been gone at 74 pitches....he clearly did not have it at all.
Stretch out Affeldt if you have to.......or bring up a true long man....to avoid that mess.

membengal
07-10-2008, 11:04 AM
Redread, I can think of no other organization that cares about its assets that would have endangered an asset like the Reds did. And, other than nostalgic thinking that "back in the day" guys used to do what Harang did, I can think of no usage like what Cincy did with Harang (particularly at the point in the season in which it happened) by any other club of a pitcher like Harang in at least the last two decades. If not longer.

At what point in the '90s did Atlanta run Smoltz or Maddux or Glavine out to throw that many pitches in a real game on their normal throwing day and then keep them in their normal rotation spot and even speed it up on short rest like the Reds did with Harang? Find me some other team that has done what the Reds did? Any team. Just one. Please, let me know.

Always Red
07-10-2008, 11:16 AM
which should scream at the manager ... don't abuse this guy, treat him with kid gloves. And certainly don't pitch him 4 innings in relief on 1 days rest and then bring him back 4 days later. It's all about mitigating risk.

I see those 3 years with 200+ innings and I see a pitcher that has shown he can handle a workload, and has built up his arm and shoulder, not a fragile piece of glass that is removed from it's case on every 5th day and allowed to throw 90 or so pitches before being gently nestled back into it's crib.

Some arms are built to pitch and some are not. Baseball history is loaded with guys who could easily throw 200-300+ innings year after year after year with no injury. And yes, there were guys back then who could not do it, either. They just washed out, or became relievers.

One could even make a point that pitchers arms are coddled more now than they ever have before, and yet there are still a lot of injuries, maybe more now than ever? Maybe not- records of that really do not exist, and the MRI has done more to advance the art of diagnosis. So, perhaps more arms are being operated on now than ever because of more intense diagnosis? Or because pitchers are not trained to throw 200-300 innings a year anymore?

It's all conjecture. Pitchers are watched more carefully than ever, and their every pitch counted, charted and analyzed more now than ever. Yet, still, injuries happen, and they happen all the time. The popular theory is that it is due to overuse, but frankly, that smells more and more to me like conventional wisdom than anything else.

Throwing baseballs overhand is a violent act that very often leads to injury. The best way to mitigate that risk is to not throw overhand at all!

Stormy
07-10-2008, 11:17 AM
There will never be any certainty of causation regarding a potential arm injury of this nature, but there can certainly be points of correlation. Our ace walked into that relief outing with a 3.50ERA, and outstanding peripherals, in complete keeping with his production over the previous 3+ seasons.

Since that appearance, his 7.31ERA, accompanying peripherals and every drop of empirical evidence regarding the consistency of his mechanics, have been a veritable nightmare. Is it sheer coincidence, that after 3 seasons worth of starts, his decline starts immediately in the midst of those 2 outings?

We ask our ace to pitch an extremely high pressure (extra innngs, no margin for error, next to last pitcher available, 4IP) relief stint on a mere 2 days of rest, in a pretty meaningless game, where our manager had already blown the use of his long-man. Harang reaches back to rise to the challenge 9K in 4IP, and then is asked to start a game on short rest again 3 days later. He's not looked the same since, and yes you can certainly still pitch a gem or two in the midst of a deteriorating injury (ask Pete Harnisch, who spent his Reds career doing just that).

Regardless of proof of causation, it was the epitome of reckless folly to push this team's Ace pitcher to pitch on 2 days rest, followed by 3 days rest (not to mention leaving him out for 100+ pitches on a night where he's completely lost all semblance of control, like his last start). The single poor performance prior to the injury was not unusual, as Harang has always had game here and there where the gopherball propensity gets him in trouble, but what we've witnessed since that relief appearance has never been classic Harang again in terms of his location, his ability to log IPs, his control and velocity. The guy had failed to pitch 6+IP once all year up to that point, since that time he's made it past the 6IP mark twice in 8 starts.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 11:20 AM
Stop making sense! ;)

We're always looking for the easy blame (not just here, but everywhere in society).

Sometimes crap just happens.

Contrary to what some believe, pitch counts and the theory of pitcher abuse due to a certain number of pitches are not a science at all. Check out what Daisuke Matsuzaka (and the entire Japanese major leagues) and Nolan Ryan have to say about it sometime.

I know it's easy to blame Dusty for nearly everything, and we all want to because he's such an easy target for a thinking fan.

If you're looking for pure proof that specific outings led to Harang's injury, then you're never going to get it.

However, and this is what is important, that does not then mean that the Reds have not abused Harang. It does not mean that Baker hasn't abused Harang. And it also does not mean that Narron didn't abuse Harang.

So far as I see it, the Reds have had two choices over the years:

1) Protect their pitching assets the best they could. Reds pitchers would then have some x chance of going down to injury.

2) Fail to protect their pitching assets the best they could. Allow Narron and Baker to make managerial decisions with the pitching staff that wasn't necessarily in the best interests of protecting one or more pitchers. Reds pitchers would then have some y chance of going down to injury.

y is greater than x. This much we do know, and that is a fact.

The Reds have selected option #2 the past few years. Suddenly Harang is injured, possibly with a severe injury. If you state that the injury could have happened had the Reds selected option #1, well sure, you're correct with that assessment.

But what you're not stating is what's key: if the Reds would have selected option #1, then it is a fact that the probability of Harang or any other pitcher going down to injury would have been lower, possibly significantly lower.

And that's why it's always important for teams to choose option #1. Those teams that choose option #2 ... they deserve to have their pitchers go down with severe injuries, and they are the teams who will get zero sympathy from me if that's indeed what happens.

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 11:21 AM
There was a quote I posted on here a couple weeks ago from a scout who said Harang's mechanics haven't been the same since the relief appearance in San Diego. That, along with his awful numbers since then is enough evidence for me to conclude that the relief appearance played a big role in Harang's recent decline and arm injury.

westofyou
07-10-2008, 11:22 AM
They just washed out, or became relievers.

http://www.checkoutmycards.com/CardImages/Cards/012/527/08F.jpg

Kc61
07-10-2008, 11:27 AM
We ask our ace to pitch an extremely high pressure (extra innngs, no margin for error, next to last pitcher available, 4IP) relief stint on a mere 2 days of rest, in a pretty meaningless game, where our manager had already blown the use of his long-man.


Why was it a "pretty meaningless game?" It's only a meaningless game if you assumed on May 24 that the Reds had no shot this year and shouldn't try hard to win an extra inning ballgame on the west coast.

As I said in my previous post, Dusty wasn't hired to give up on the season in mid-May.

Yes, I think it was an error in judgment to use Harang so much in that seven day period. But the concept that a game in May was "meaningless" so the team should have just trashed it and gone on to the next day is inconsistent with what the owner, management and most fans expect from a team trying to become respectable.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 11:30 AM
Why was it a "pretty meaningless game?" It's only a meaningless game if you assumed on May 24 that the Reds had no shot this year and shouldn't try hard to win an extra inning ballgame on the west coast.

As I said in my previous post, Dusty wasn't hired to give up on the season in mid-May.

Yes, I think it was an error in judgment to use Harang so much in that seven day period. But the concept that a game in May was "meaningless" so the team should have just trashed it and gone on to the next day is inconsistent with what the owner, management and most fans expect from a team trying to become respectable.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2008.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2009.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2010.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2011.

That's the duration of Harang's contract (option included). Bad managers are willing to risk whole seasons for one game in one season. That's why they're bad managers. It's what Jerry Narron did when he was here. Good managers will recognize the risk/reward of whole seasons vs. one game and understand that one game in one season isn't worth the risk of losing whole seasons of production.

membengal
07-10-2008, 11:32 AM
Meaningless. One of 162. And an early one at that. Meaningless in the sense that is obviously sometimes better to concede the battle if it gives you a better shot at winning the war. If it is late September, and they are one game out? Perhaps then. Perhaps.

But in late May? With four months of a season left? When you need your ace to have any chance at playing meaningful ball in August and September? Insane.

By going "all in" with his chips in early May, Baker risked making the games in August and September truly meaningless. Or, he could have fallen back, looked at the big picture, and protected his asset for the long run.

I know what the smart play would have been, and there were plenty of people on this board that knew so at the time. Managerial malpractice that day. And its ripples are still being felt.

And before anyone labels me a Dusty-attacker, do note that I started a thread not too long ago praising his usage of Cueto and Volquez this year. But what he did to Harang that day? Indefensible.

Stormy
07-10-2008, 11:38 AM
There are 162 games scheduled for 2008.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2009.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2010.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2011.

That's the duration of Harang's contract (option included). Bad managers are willing to risk whole seasons for one game in one season. That's why they're bad managers. It's what Jerry Narron did when he was here. Good managers will recognize the risk/reward of whole seasons vs. one game and understand that one game in one season isn't worth the risk of losing whole seasons of production.

:thumbup: Beautiful. How in a game of baseball's longevity, can you imperil the health of your ace pitcher (and the long-term health of your franchise in the process), for the sake of extra-inning duty that is always reserved for a long reliever? Talk about pyrrhic victories, or attempts at winning a small battle at the cost of losing the war. This is exactly why Dusty's philosophy is abhorrent to me, as is BCast's: Press all the buttons and hope that winning results from sheer stated willpower and/or gut instinct, rather than by utilizing fundamentally sound principles in the process of building, development and management.

Stormy
07-10-2008, 11:40 AM
Meaningless. One of 162. And an early one at that. Meaningless in the sense that is obviously sometimes better to concede the battle if it gives you a better shot at winning the war. If it is late September, and they are one game out? Perhaps then. Perhaps.

But in late May? With four months of a season left? When you need your ace to have any chance at playing meaningful ball in August and September? Insane.

By going "all in" with his chips in early May, Baker risked making the games in August and September truly meaningless. Or, he could have fallen back, looked at the big picture, and protected his asset for the long run.

I know what the smart play would have been, and there were plenty of people on this board that knew so at the time. Managerial malpractice that day. And its ripples are still being felt.

And before anyone labels me a Dusty-attacker, do note that I started a thread not too long ago praising his usage of Cueto and Volquez this year. But what he did to Harang that day? Indefensible.

Great stuff, as well. And I mostly agree with you regarding Dusty's handling of Volquez and Cueto (aside from Volquez's relief appearance, and a few times running Cueto back out for that extra inning).

westofyou
07-10-2008, 11:42 AM
First Reds game that long in 29 years, anomalies create unique situations, the game became an event that created more unique situations, some avoidable, some probably not.

The game is a monster that is sometimes hard to stop when it's happening all around you, an 18 inning game is a great example of that theory in action.

Whither Fred Toney and Hippo Vaughn.

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 11:44 AM
I just don't want Dusty anywhere near the pitching staff for the next three years. We've already seen his work with Harang and I'm afraid Cueto and Volquez are next. We saw it with Cueto last night. He had thrown 95 pitches in six great innings against a great offense. Most managers would have been happy with that and pulled him after six. Not Dusty. He pushed Cueto back out there for the seventh inning and though it was the defense's fault, Cueto still shouldn't have been out there. Cueto is a 22-year old rookie pitcher. Dusty should be protecting his arm instead of pushing for an extra inning and forcing him to throw 110+ pitches. This is a kid, much like Harang and Volquez, who figures to be a big part of the Reds future success and the Reds need to make sure they handle him properly.

membengal
07-10-2008, 11:46 AM
True enough, woy. And that's why my irritation doesn't end with Dusty Baker, but also is aimed at management. Given how that game went down, and given that Dusty made the decisions he did (ill-advised or not), damage control could and SHOULD have been put in place by the front office the week following. That would have included bringing up some extra arms to start on an emergency basis and pushing back both Harang and Volquez. I have no doubt that many organizations would have made those obvious moves. I don't have any good idea why Cincy did not.

The entire thing is beyond regrettable.

Always Red
07-10-2008, 11:51 AM
If you're looking for pure proof that specific outings led to Harang's injury, then you're never going to get it.

However, and this is what is important, that does not then mean that the Reds have not abused Harang. It does not mean that Baker hasn't abused Harang. And it also does not mean that Narron didn't abuse Harang.

So far as I see it, the Reds have had two choices over the years:

1) Protect their pitching assets the best they could. Reds pitchers would then have some x chance of going down to injury.

2) Fail to protect their pitching assets the best they could. Allow Narron and Baker to make managerial decisions with the pitching staff that wasn't necessarily in the best interests of protecting one or more pitchers. Reds pitchers would then have some y chance of going down to injury.

y is greater than x. This much we do know, and that is a fact.

The Reds have selected option #2 the past few years. Suddenly Harang is injured, possibly with a severe injury. If you state that the injury could have happened had the Reds selected option #1, well sure, you're correct with that assessment.

But what you're not stating is what's key: if the Reds would have selected option #1, then it is a fact that the probability of Harang or any other pitcher going down to injury would have been lower, possibly significantly lower.

And that's why it's always important for teams to choose option #1. Those teams that choose option #2 ... they deserve to have their pitchers go down with severe injuries, and they are the teams who will get zero sympathy from me if that's indeed what happens.


Cyc, I disagree that it is a scientific fact. I think that it's still more conventional wisdom than anything else. Just as many pitchers get hurt today as did in the bad old days, as far as we know. We do know, for a fact, that pitchers still get hurt constantly today, in spite of all the care, charting, limiting of pitches and innings and oversight. I agree that a team wants to protect it's assets, who wouldn't agree to that? My question is what exactly constitutes protecting those assets? Teams are taking educated guesses today (along with help from sabermetricians and orthopedic surgeons), and pitchers are still getting hurt.

If you can show me that any of this theory has been proven as fact, then I will surely listen, as I do consider myself to be a reasonable guy, who can be persuaded- you have certainly changed my mind about things in the past! ;)

My personal opinion (and I am not alone) is that choosing to always go very slowly, and not let a pitcher build up innings or stamina in an arm, may in the long run, be just as deleterious to a pitchers career as any overuse. That's pretty broad and vague, I know, but I think there's a lot of truth in it.

Baker certainly opened himself up to questioning by running Harang out there in relief, on short rest. I also very often question why Baker does the things that he does. Given his history with Woods and Prior, one would think that Dusty would to everything to avoid being blamed for another pitching injury.

edabbs44
07-10-2008, 11:53 AM
There are 162 games scheduled for 2008.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2009.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2010.

There are 162 games scheduled for 2011.

That's the duration of Harang's contract (option included). Bad managers are willing to risk whole seasons for one game in one season. That's why they're bad managers. It's what Jerry Narron did when he was here. Good managers will recognize the risk/reward of whole seasons vs. one game and understand that one game in one season isn't worth the risk of losing whole seasons of production.

If that one game did that much damage to Harang's arm, then I would be willing to bet that it was going to happen sooner or later no matter if he pitched in that game or not.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 12:09 PM
Cyc, I disagree that it is a scientific fact. I think that it's still more conventional wisdom than anything else. Just as many pitchers get hurt today as did in the bad old days, as far as we know. We do know, for a fact, that pitchers still get hurt constantly today, in spite of all the care, charting, limiting of pitches and innings and oversight. I agree that a team wants to protect it's assets, who wouldn't agree to that? My question is what exactly constitutes protecting those assets? Teams are taking educated guesses today (along with help from sabermetricians and orthopedic surgeons), and pitchers are still getting hurt.

If you can show me that any of this theory has been proven as fact, then I will surely listen, as I do consider myself to be a reasonable guy, who can be persuaded- you have certainly changed my mind about things in the past! ;)

My personal opinion (and I am not alone) is that choosing to always go very slowly, and not let a pitcher build up innings or stamina in an arm, may in the long run, be just as deleterious to a pitchers career as any overuse. That's pretty broad and vague, I know, but I think there's a lot of truth in it.

Baker certainly opened himself up to questioning by running Harang out there in relief, on short rest. I also very often question why Baker does the things that he does. Given his history with Woods and Prior, one would think that Dusty would to everything to avoid being blamed for another pitching injury.

Woolner and Jazayeli found plenty of proof that the probabilities of long-term injury are greatly increased when pitchers are abused. The correlations they found were abundant. You seem to concentrated on the absolute proof - which likely doesn't exist - but in reality it's the probabilities that you need to look at.

RedlegJake
07-10-2008, 12:10 PM
The Reds have abused the idea of Harang's durability and "iron arm" image? Because he pitched 3 years with 211+ innings? And someone asks who has done stuff like that in the past two decades? You gotta be kidding right?
Maddux - 19 years in a row from 1988 to 2006 with 199 innings his least and 268 and 267 in back to back seasons and several starts on 3 days rest during that time.
Relief appearances? 0

It's not the innings the last three years! This is not an abusive number of innings. Here's the abuse - 267 pitches (I believe that is correct) in an 8 day period, 2 starts and 4 innings of relief. That's ridiculous because injuries become prevalent, imo, when a pitcher pitches far in excess of what he's used to. Now forearm tightness, mechanical problems, if nothing else "dead arm" syndrome. If the MRI comes back clean, were I the Reds FO, I'd shelve him til after the AS break and put him at the tail end of the rotation then, giving him the maximum break and possibly limit him to 5 innings for a start or two. This season is lost, the team is obviously not competitive with the Cubs and Brewers, and probably Cards. In that case, treat him like a future asset that needs protecting and test another possible future asset - give Maloney a couple starts.

If the relief stint wasn't the culprit in his problems it was still a stupid decision - personally I don't see how it couldn't have hurt to some degree. AND Dusty used Volquez, too, on even shorter rest which was even dumber. Some games you lose in order to win later. The SD game was in that category - bullpen used up and having to dip into starters? No way. Dusty should have known who was still in the poen and when he got to the end of the string he tells the guy to suck it up and keep going. San Diego did and got a surprisingly good outing from their guy and never touched their starters. Dusty burned his pen too early without a guy in reserve. Cordero should always be at least the next-to-last guy left when he pitches. One guy to hold the fort if it goes into extras and that guy has to win or lose.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 12:13 PM
Dusty should have known who was still in the poen and when he got to the end of the string he tells the guy to suck it up and keep going. San Diego did and got a surprisingly good outing from their guy and never touched their starters. Dusty burned his pen too early without a guy in reserve. Cordero should always be at least the next-to-last guy left when he pitches. One guy to hold the fort if it goes into extras and that guy has to win or lose.

Yup, and that should have been Fogg's role. Fogg really only serves as being useful in a couple roles, and that game in San Diego was one of them.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 12:17 PM
BTW, the Reds Sunday starter is now officially listed as TBA, not Harang.

I suspect MRI results aren't too far off.

redsmetz
07-10-2008, 12:22 PM
Hal wrote:


I can remember back in The Big Red Machine Days when Cincinnati TV icon Ruth Lyons had folks on her show singing, “The Whole Town’s Batty, About Cincinnati, What a Team, What a Team, What a Team.”

It must have been another Big Red Machine because Ruth retired from the show in 1967. Maybe Bob Braun crooned it for him.

Always Red
07-10-2008, 12:22 PM
It's not the innings the last three years! This is not an abusive number of innings. Here's the abuse - 267 pitches (I believe that is correct) in an 8 day period, 2 starts and 4 innings of relief. That's ridiculous because injuries become prevalent, imo, when a pitcher pitches far in excess of what he's used to.

Jake, I agree 100% with this. Excellent point!

Joseph
07-10-2008, 12:24 PM
This is not Dusty's fault. He may not be the in game manager that we would like, but I am hearing a lot of intelligent posters claiming Harang has had bad performance and injury as a result of Johnny B Baker. Its really ludicrous. Harang was pitching badly prior to that, or so HE said, and as WOY pointed out an 18 inning game means odd things happen. It's not his fault!

Come on people the team sucks, a LOT. We have plenty of other things to argue about, lets not make with hunts part of the daily routine.

BRM
07-10-2008, 12:51 PM
Homer will be the starter Sunday, per John Fay.

KronoRed
07-10-2008, 12:53 PM
Homer will be the starter Sunday, per John Fay.

Boy just think of what the Reds rotation will look like if Harang is out and Arroyo is dealt ;)

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 12:54 PM
The Reds don't expect to hear the results of Aaron Harang's MRI until this afternoon per Fay's blog.

BRM
07-10-2008, 12:55 PM
Boy just think of what the Reds rotation will look like of Harang is out and Arroyo is dealt ;)

Do I have to think about it? I'd prefer not to.

LoganBuck
07-10-2008, 12:59 PM
This is not Dusty's fault. He may not be the in game manager that we would like, but I am hearing a lot of intelligent posters claiming Harang has had bad performance and injury as a result of Johnny B Baker. Its really ludicrous. Harang was pitching badly prior to that, or so HE said, and as WOY pointed out an 18 inning game means odd things happen. It's not his fault!

Come on people the team sucks, a LOT. We have plenty of other things to argue about, lets not make with hunts part of the daily routine.

I think the point is we have a clear point of precipitous decline. The eighteen inning game in and of itself wasn't the problem, imo. It was the hideous decision to bring him back on short rest after that. I advocated bringing Bailey up to pitch the Wednesday game after Cueto went the following Tuesday. Instead we saw both Arroyo and Harang on short rest and both pitchers had negative responses. IMO Custer Baker and Walt Jocketty share the blame for this one.

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 01:02 PM
Aaron Harang (7 DXL)
"Tight forearm" sounds kind of innocuous, like "skinned knee" or "bum ankle." Colloquial always sounds better than technical, but sounds better isn't always better. Harang may seem like the prototypical workhorse, but this kind of injury is seldom just nothing. Going through the list of names, there are guys like John Patterson, Josh Johnson, and Shawn Hill who all had this type of forearm stiffness as a precursor to far more serious elbow problems. Sure, there are some like Felix Hernandez, for whom forearm stiffness was nothing more than that, but the list of players is much more negative than I'd expected. Harang's workload isn't tremendous, though he does have a number of starts of more than a 100 pitches, and the occasional period where he seems to lose it for a start or two, and then get it back. This is no different under Dusty Baker than it was in past seasons without him, so eliminating that culprit leaves me taking a hard look at the relief appearance he made at the end of May as a tipping point, despite Baker's protestations against the facts. (Just check his game logs, especially the game scores.) He's 14th on the PAP list, though his stress score of 13 is hardly worrisome, and wouldn't have made the top 50 just five years ago. Harang's velocity and control were off last time out, another big red flag. Harang is heading back for imaging and a visit with Tim Kremchek, and Reds fans may be holding their breath and hoping that Harang will only miss one start or just have a short DL stint. Initial testing makes it seem as if the UCL is intact, so we won't know much until the results are back.


From Will Carroll over at BP. He give an indication that the relief appearance in May may have been the tipping point.

Cooper
07-10-2008, 01:18 PM
Does it meet the "wise" standard? Was Harang being sent out on short rest a wise thing to do? Was using his long relief specialist to face 1 batter a wise thing to do? Was sending Cueto out for the 7th a wise thing to do? Is pitching Coco 4 days in a row a wise thing to do? Dusty himself stated he did not want to use Coco on that 4th night and, yet, he uses him again (even with a 3 run lead, a below average replacement player can protect that lead 96% of the time per "The Book". That's using the worst guy on your staff). He still ran him out there. That's just out right silly and stupid to do.

If you use the "wise" old man standard...Dusty comes up short. He's foolish and short sighted.

What bothers me most is how management does not have the guts to try to reign the guy in.

Build a management team and make management decisons: don't set up silos where no one can talk to each other about the decisions they make.

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 01:19 PM
From Will Carroll over at BP. He give an indication that the relief appearance in May may have been the tipping point.

I think this is the important distinction. We need to think in shades of gray here. Harang's relief appearance is not likely the sole cause, but it likely was a significant contributor. The question becomes whether it was the last 5% or the last 50%. How long would Harang have lasted had he not been subject to that stretch of abuse? Another month? To the end of the year? Three years? Who knows...

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:22 PM
Redread, I can think of no other organization that cares about its assets that would have endangered an asset like the Reds did. And, other than nostalgic thinking that "back in the day" guys used to do what Harang did,


It's not just "back in the day". It still happens. Even today, sometimes starters are forced to pitch in relief.

Dusty did he right move at the time, in that fateful 11th inning when he burned both Fogg and Bray. He had a two run lead, and the bottom of the order coming up. I'm willing to bet that every major league manager would've done the same thing. You go for the win. You don't plan for your bullpen to give up the lead and then have to play another 7 innings (or whatever it was).

Someone mentioned that it had been 30 years since the last 18 inning game.. or something like that.. a very long time. Harang volunteered to go out there.
Arroyo was already burned as a pinch runner.. and then there were just kids left. Who should have Dusty ran out there? Do you just leave Bray out there until he collapses? IIRC, Bray went pretty deep into his pitch count as well.

Eventually, Volquez had to be used out of the pen. Yet no one is complaining about that, because Volquez is pitching well. People are upset that Harang might be hurt and are looking for a scapegoat. My guess is that Harang would be getting this MRI regardless of whether he had that relief appearance or not. The guy has had a huge workload long before Dusty even arrived. Dusty works him less than Miley and Narron did. Plus, pitchers just get injured. It happens. That's why many teams don't want to give pitchers more than a 3 year contract, because the injury risk is so high. Even if Harang were babied for his entire career, he still might've gotten hurt, or perhaps the injury would've only be postponed until next year..







I can think of no usage like what Cincy did with Harang (particularly at the point in the season in which it happened) by any other club of a pitcher like Harang in at least the last two decades. If not longer.


Over 7 days, May 22-29, Harang threw 239 pitches. They were just spread out over three appearances. That's a lot, but not crazy excessive. Guys have thrown that much over a 7 day span plenty of times. It's certainly not a once in 20 year event as you suggest.




At what point in the '90s did Atlanta run Smoltz or Maddux or Glavine out to throw that many pitches in a real game on their normal throwing day and then keep them in their normal rotation spot and even speed it up on short rest like the Reds did with Harang? Find me some other team that has done what the Reds did? Any team. Just one. Please, let me know.

Ok.. here's one. there's plenty more, but this is one I remember from last year.

Roger Clemens
http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/players/3340/gamelog;_ylt=AtrMQwnGbP9RFOGtIgOo3peFCLcF?year=200 7
started Jun 21, came in relief Jun 24, started Jun 27.. That's 3 appearances in a 7 day span..

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:28 PM
If that one game did that much damage to Harang's arm, then I would be willing to bet that it was going to happen sooner or later no matter if he pitched in that game or not.

Exactly.. If that relief appearance killed him, then he was on the verge of getting hurt anyhow.

Again, there's no outcry about using Volquez in relief (at least not yet) because he's pitching well. Although I guess if Volquez starts to struggle in late August, Dusty will get blamed for that too.

membengal
07-10-2008, 01:30 PM
Wow. A 44-year-old Clemens at the end of his career. That is EXACTLY like what the Reds did with Harang.

Not.

Try again.

ETA: Volquez's use was also insane. In every respect. He should have been pushed back as well before his next start. The blame for that also falls on the front office as well as Dusty.

And, I still challenge you to come up with something similar to Harang other than back-in-the-day. Given Harang's age, contract, and usefulness, you will not find another organization that would have endangered an asset like the Reds did.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:31 PM
. Some games you lose in order to win later. The SD game was in that category - bullpen used up and having to dip into starters? No way. Dusty should have known who was still in the poen and when he got to the end of the string he tells the guy to suck it up and keep going. .

But then Dusty gets crucified for having Bray throw 100 pitches or however long it took for Bray to collapse. Doesn't Dusty have a duty to protect Bray too? Bottom line is that it was a lose-lose situation for Dusty. No matter what he did that evening, it was going to be viewed as wrong.

Cyclone792
07-10-2008, 01:32 PM
Exactly.. If that relief appearance killed him, then he was on the verge of getting hurt anyhow.

Again, there's no outcry about using Volquez in relief (at least not yet) because he's pitching well. Although I guess if Volquez starts to struggle in late August, Dusty will get blamed for that too.

Pitching Volquez in relief was as stupid as pitching Harang in relief.

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 01:32 PM
It's not just "back in the day". It still happens. Even today, sometimes starters are forced to pitch in relief.

Dusty did he right move at the time, in that fateful 11th inning when he burned both Fogg and Bray. He had a two run lead, and the bottom of the order coming up. I'm willing to bet that every major league manager would've done the same thing. You go for the win. You don't plan for your bullpen to give up the lead and then have to play another 7 innings (or whatever it was).

This just isn't true. A smart manager always leaves himself an out just in case. Unless he has no other choice, he doesn't leave the possibility of putting his most valuable players at risk. They stopped an All-Star game for precisely this reasons. It was smarter to end the game prematurely, with all the negative publicity it entailed, than to endanger the health of the pitchers.

The problem with burning both Fogg and Bray to protect a 2 run lead was that it wasn't necessary in the least. Fogg was Dusty's only long guy left and he was NOT a significantly better option than Bray. Fogg was used unnecessarily, painting Dusty in to a corner in the event that the game continued -- which it did. IF Fogg was good enough, Bray would not have been need at all. And if he wasn't good enough, Bray wasn't going to be able to go multiple innings.

Dusty took a significant risk to give himself a marginal (at best) advantage in a meaningless game. That Harang was willing to sacrifice himself does not excuse Dusty from enabling the situation. And neither does the fact that Volquez appears to have come out unscathed. For all we know, Volquez is much further down the line of eventual injury than he would be otherwise.

LoganBuck
07-10-2008, 01:35 PM
But then Dusty gets crucified for having Bray throw 100 pitches or however long it took for Bray to collapse. Doesn't Dusty have a duty to protect Bray too? Bottom line is that it was a lose-lose situation for Dusty. No matter what he did that evening, it was going to be viewed as wrong.

Lets not forget the bungled up everybody plays lineup that Custer Baker left himself with that day. He screwed up the lineup with his rotten double switches making it very easy for the Padres to navigate the lineup. A whole bunch of yuck.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:37 PM
From Will Carroll over at BP. He give an indication that the relief appearance in May may have been the tipping point.


I would've guessed Will Carroll would've said that. It lines up nicely with his theories about how pitching injuries could dramatically be decreased if people would only listen to what he's saying.

His reasoning is very shaky. He basically said that Harang has had a heavy workload for the last 4 years, so that can't be it. Only thing left is that relief appearance.. He fails to consider that perhaps the cumulative effect of 3+ years of heavy workload have finally come home to roost.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 01:38 PM
Dusty should have asked a position player to pitch before asking either Harang or Volquez, its that simple. I don't care if they begged to pitch in that game, he should know better. He however didn't and the fact that everyone and their mother knew he didn't except the people who hired him tells me all I need to know about the future of this team.....

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:42 PM
Wow. A 44-year-old Clemens at the end of his career. That is EXACTLY like what the Reds did with Harang.

Not.

Try again.



here's what you asked: Find me some other team that has done what the Reds did? Any team. Just one. Please, let me know.

I took that to mean, "find me a team that used a starting pitcher 3 times in the same time span"... I happened to remember Clemens..

Tell me what your point is? Is it Harang's age, contract, or what? What's the difference? My point is that even in recent history, starting pitchers have been used in relief and kept their same spot in the rotation.






And, I still challenge you to come up with something similar to Harang other than back-in-the-day. Given Harang's age, contract, and usefulness, you will not find another organization that would have endangered an asset like the Reds did.


So 2007 was "back in the day"? Clemens had a hefty contract too. I don't get it.. If the Yanks could do it with a pitcher making about 20 million, isn't that a lot of money at stake as well?

What exactly makes Harang any different? Not that I'll take the time to find another example, but what's the difference?

LoganBuck
07-10-2008, 01:43 PM
I would've guessed Will Carroll would've said that. It lines up nicely with his theories about how pitching injuries could dramatically be decreased if people would only listen to what he's saying.

His reasoning is very shaky. He basically said that Harang has had a heavy workload for the last 4 years, so that can't be it. Only thing left is that relief appearance.. He fails to consider that perhaps the cumulative effect of 3+ years of heavy workload have finally come home to roost.

Do you own power tools, or ever driven a car with high mileage? You do certain things to extend their useful lives, you don't push them, your rest them, you ask yourself "Should I be doing this?", you have a backup plan.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 01:43 PM
Will White for the 1879 Reds was 43-31 pitching 680 innings. And you guys are complaining about one relief appearance by Harang.

By the way -- managers don't throw extra innings games by using position players in close, competitive situations. If Baker used a position player in that spot, MLB would have fined and suspended him.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 01:44 PM
What makes it different is probably the 3 times more pitches Harang threw in his relief outing for starters. Then there is probably the 70 innings or so already on his arm at this point in the season, while Clemens was making his 2nd or 3rd appearance of the year at that point.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 01:45 PM
Will White for the 1879 Reds was 43-31 pitching 680 innings. And you guys are complaining about one relief appearance by Harang.

By the way -- managers don't throw extra innings games by using position players in close, competitive situations. If Baker used a position player in that spot, MLB would have fined and suspended him.

Its not throwing the game, its protecting your players. And if MLB truly wanted to fine and suspend him, then the Reds brass should have ponied up the money for it because it would have been the right thing to do.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:52 PM
This just isn't true. A smart manager always leaves himself an out just in case. Unless he has no other choice, he doesn't leave the possibility of putting his most valuable players at risk. They stopped an All-Star game for precisely this reasons. It was smarter to end the game prematurely, with all the negative publicity it entailed, than to endanger the health of the pitchers.

The problem with burning both Fogg and Bray to protect a 2 run lead was that it wasn't necessary in the least.


Smart managers leave themselves open to this all the time. How many times has a manager gone through his entire bullpen in the 9th to win a game. Many more times, he only has one guy left in the pen, and if the game goes to 18 innings, he's screwed.

The smart thing to do was to pull out all the stops to win the game in the 11th. That's exactly what Dusty did. If it had worked, I doubt anyone would be second guessing him. Unfortunately Fogg and Bray let the Reds down.








Fogg was Dusty's only long guy left and he was NOT a significantly better option than Bray.


Fogg was brought in to face the 3 RH hitters and a switch hitter that were due up. When he failed, Bray was brought in because there was a run of lefties coming up. Perfectly reasonable with a 2 run lead. If the game was still tied, then I'd agree with you.





Fogg was used unnecessarily, painting Dusty in to a corner in the event that the game continued -- which it did.


No, it was because Dusty didn't want Bray to face 3 RH batters and a switch hitter. Dusty wanted to win the game. Sure, he could've started the inning with Bray and then if Bray struggled vs the RH batters, then bring in Fogg to face the lefties. Then if the Reds lose the game, everyone on the board would call Dusty an idiot for doing that.

When LaRussa burns through his entire pen to get favorable matchups, no one calls him an idiot because despite a 2 run lead, the game might go 18 innings...

You don't plan for something that happens once every 30 years. What was the win expectancy when the team has a two run lead going into the bottom of the 11th? Pretty high, I imagine.








IF Fogg was good enough, Bray would not have been need at all. And if he wasn't good enough, Bray wasn't going to be able to go multiple innings.


But what if Bray cleans up the mess Fogg made, which he had a reasonable chance of doing? Are you saying that if Fogg is in a game as a long man, he should never be removed if he gets in trouble, just in case the game goes 18 innings? When a Fogg or Belisle type comes in for long relief and gets in trouble, I never hear anyone say "Well, we better leave him in for a few more innings, because he's the only long guy we've got"..






Dusty took a significant risk to give himself a marginal (at best) advantage in a meaningless game. .

Again, what was the win expecancy with a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 11th? Pretty high.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:54 PM
Dusty should have asked a position player to pitch before asking either Harang or Volquez, ....


A manager did that once and the position player ended up getting hurt. Maybe someone remembers the name.. Was it Canesco? Maybe someone else remembers, but after that event, position players were used as pitchers much more sparingly..

I guess it doesn't matter though. Dusty was going to get blamed for any pitching injury on this team no matter what.

REDREAD
07-10-2008, 01:57 PM
What makes it different is probably the 3 times more pitches Harang threw in his relief outing for starters.

There's been other multiple inning relief pitchers by starters. Unfortunately, it's hard to find historical pitch counts. Harang's next start was also very light.. only around 70 pitches..



Then there is probably the 70 innings or so already on his arm at this point in the season, while Clemens was making his 2nd or 3rd appearance of the year at that point.

Does it matter what time of the year a starter is used in relief? This seems pretty weak. I could say that a pitcher is more vulnerable in the start of the season, since he's still getting used to a regular workload..

Cooper
07-10-2008, 02:02 PM
KC61: a manager just the other day used a position player after 15 innings...he had other options, but he decided it was not worth it in the long term, iirc the score was tied 1 to 1....that just occurred like 10 days ago. I don't think the it was that big a deal to the league...nor was it even that big a story. Sometimes, managers know when to bite the bullet and sacrifice short term results for the long term good of the club.

membengal
07-10-2008, 02:03 PM
here's what you asked: Find me some other team that has done what the Reds did? Any team. Just one. Please, let me know.

I took that to mean, "find me a team that used a starting pitcher 3 times in the same time span"... I happened to remember Clemens..

Tell me what your point is? Is it Harang's age, contract, or what? What's the difference? My point is that even in recent history, starting pitchers have been used in relief and kept their same spot in the rotation.







So 2007 was "back in the day"? Clemens had a hefty contract too. I don't get it.. If the Yanks could do it with a pitcher making about 20 million, isn't that a lot of money at stake as well?

What exactly makes Harang any different? Not that I'll take the time to find another example, but what's the difference?

Seriously?

You don't know the difference between how the Yankees might choose to use Clemens at the age of 44 and newly signed for four whole months versus how the Reds should be using Harang in his prime and signed through 2011? That difference escapes you? At this point, you are being deliberatly obtuse.

And, on top of that, the one example you use was 4 inning stint by Clemens, followed by a 1 inning stint, followed by a six inning stint. Not comparable to the crazed use of Harang (four innings, 9 Ks, high stress pitches) in the relief appearance that the Reds did followed by a short rest start for longer innings just after.

My initial point was EXACTLY about Harang as an asset, so YES, his age, value, and contract matter to this inquiry. That New York not surprisingly wouldn't give a flying fig about Clemens' long-term health at age 44 and on a 4-month contract does not make him a remotely good comp for my question. Not even close. Universes apart.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 02:05 PM
A manager did that once and the position player ended up getting hurt. Maybe someone remembers the name.. Was it Canesco? Maybe someone else remembers, but after that event, position players were used as pitchers much more sparingly..

I guess it doesn't matter though. Dusty was going to get blamed for any pitching injury on this team no matter what.

I would have handed the ball to Patterson and said, good luck, you are all we have left. There is just absolutely no reason for using 2 starting pitches on short rest in a game. None.

Joseph
07-10-2008, 02:05 PM
I guess it doesn't matter though. Dusty was going to get blamed for any pitching injury on this team no matter what.

If I've read anything in this thread thats true, its that statement.

I tend to think if Harang was 12-2 right now with a 2.30 ERA people would still complain about Bakers 'abuse' of him.

Cueto can't locate his slider....Dusty's fault.

Homer getting lit up in AAA....Dusty's fault.

Arroyo giving up 10 runs in Toronto....Dusty's fault.

He should be clairvoyant and know whats going to happen, after all, Sparky was...Pete was...Hutch was.

Let the dead horse rest.

lollipopcurve
07-10-2008, 02:06 PM
Smart managers leave themselves open to this all the time. How many times has a manager gone through his entire bullpen in the 9th to win a game.

It almost never happens.


When LaRussa burns through his entire pen to get favorable matchups, no one calls him an idiot because despite a 2 run lead, the game might go 18 innings...

Larussa doesn't burn through his pen so quickly that he'd have to go to his starters in the 13th. I'd be stunned if that has ever happened.


Again, what was the win expecancy with a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 11th? Pretty high.

Sure. So why not stick with Managing 101 and leave Fogg in the pen while Bray goes out to hold the 2-run lead?

It was a blunder that no major league manager should make, in my opinion. I was a solid Baker supporter until that game. Now, no way.

RichRed
07-10-2008, 02:06 PM
Will White for the 1879 Reds was 43-31 pitching 680 innings. And you guys are complaining about one relief appearance by Harang.

Let's not pretend that's the only thing being discussed here. It's a pattern. Three years of non-Dusty-related overuse, a 4-inning relief outing on short rest followed by a start on short rest, a 108-pitch outing when something was clearly wrong AFTER it was known that he had soreness in his forearm.

It all adds up to highly questionable use of a pitcher in whom the team has invested a large amount of money and who is expected to anchor the rotation for the next couple of seasons.

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 02:07 PM
It's not just "back in the day". It still happens. Even today, sometimes starters are forced to pitch in relief.

Dusty did he right move at the time, in that fateful 11th inning when he burned both Fogg and Bray. He had a two run lead, and the bottom of the order coming up. I'm willing to bet that every major league manager would've done the same thing. You go for the win.


You are dead wrong. I'd almost be willing to bet that 90% of other managers would not have even considered the move. It's plain stupid. We'll just have to agree to disagree here.

lollipopcurve
07-10-2008, 02:08 PM
KC61: a manager just the other day used a position player after 15 innings...he had other options, but he decided it was not worth it in the long term, iirc the score was tied 1 to 1....that just occurred like 10 days ago. I don't think the it was that big a deal to the league...nor was it even that big a story. Sometimes, managers know when to bite the bullet and sacrifice short term results for the long term good of the club.

Yep. Just a few days ago in Seattle they used Jamie Burke, a catcher, instead of closer Brandon Morrow. No THAT'S taking care of your staff for the long haul.

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 02:09 PM
There's been other multiple inning relief pitchers by starters. Unfortunately, it's hard to find historical pitch counts. Harang's next start was also very light.. only around 70 pitches..



Does it matter what time of the year a starter is used in relief? This seems pretty weak. I could say that a pitcher is more vulnerable in the start of the season, since he's still getting used to a regular workload..

That's because since people started paying attention to pitch counts, managers with common sense haven't done it. It's flat out stupid.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 02:09 PM
If I've read anything in this thread thats true, its that statement.

I tend to think if Harang was 12-2 right now with a 2.30 ERA people would still complain about Bakers 'abuse' of him.

Cueto can't locate his slider....Dusty's fault.

Homer getting lit up in AAA....Dusty's fault.

Arroyo giving up 10 runs in Toronto....Dusty's fault.

He should be clairvoyant and know whats going to happen, after all, Sparky was...Pete was...Hutch was.

Let the dead horse rest.

Actually, I put Cueto/Homer on Dick Pole's inability to work with pitchers. Arroyo, not so sure on him. As for Harang, if he were 12-2 with a 2.30 ERA, yeah, it wouldn't change the fact that using him the way he was used in San Diego and shortly there after in his next start was the worst decision made in baseball this season without question in my mind.

membengal
07-10-2008, 02:10 PM
If I've read anything in this thread thats true, its that statement.

I tend to think if Harang was 12-2 right now with a 2.30 ERA people would still complain about Bakers 'abuse' of him.

Cueto can't locate his slider....Dusty's fault.

Homer getting lit up in AAA....Dusty's fault.

Arroyo giving up 10 runs in Toronto....Dusty's fault.

He should be clairvoyant and know whats going to happen, after all, Sparky was...Pete was...Hutch was.

Let the dead horse rest.

Untrue. Straw man.

Again, I at least, and others in here like Stormy, have praised to varying degrees Dusty's use of Cueto and Volquez this season. I even started a thread re: same. In general, I find he has altered his approach to using them as compared to how he was using Wood, Prior, and Zambrano back in 2003. In that thread, I even did a pitch count comparison.

So, that's good for Dusty, and I acknowledged as much.

That is aside from the malpractice that he engaged in, in this instance. His managing that particular game was negligent in the highest degree, and it was uber-unwise with regard to several key assets for this club, not the least of which being Aaron Harang. It IS possible to acknowledge and discuss that without simply sweeping relevant and salient criticisms of that horrible day into a general Dusty-gonna-draw-haters dismissal. You are better than that.

Cooper
07-10-2008, 02:11 PM
I can see how Dusty got caught up in the moment re: the 18 inning game. I'll even gie him a pass for getting cornered and getting out managed ...it happens.

But to pitch Harang and 2 other pitchers on short rest-that's just silly. He had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Heck, management had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Pitching 3 guys on short rest was the best they could do?

membengal
07-10-2008, 02:13 PM
I can see how Dusty got caught up in the moment re: the 18 inning game. I'll even gie him a pass for getting cornered and getting out managed ...it happens.

But to pitch Harang and 2 other pitchers on short rest-that's just silly. He had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Heck, management had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Pitching 3 guys on short rest was the best they could do?

And, to clarify, that particular blame falls as much or more on Jocketty than it does on Dusty. Damage control following the 18-inning debacle should have been job one for Jocketty. He compounded the problem by doing absolutely nothing and allowing too many pitches to pile up unncessarily.

gm
07-10-2008, 02:20 PM
http://www.checkoutmycards.com/CardImages/Cards/012/527/08F.jpg

"Barber was having his uniform measured, so he would look good in the diathermy machine?" - Jim Bouton, Ball Four

Cooper
07-10-2008, 02:28 PM
Jocketty (who deserves part of the blame) is not used to having to reign in a manager. LaRussa is pretty good at not winging it. Dusty not so much.

Dusty has to have a solid management team around him to educate him on what's being learned about the game of baseball as it relates to research and stats. He's about 10 years behind the times and a good management team could give him parameters within he could work and make decisions. Essentially a good management team could wire around his deficits and flesh out his strengths (relating to players, possibly hitting, etc..).

What's happened instead is a mangement team who have assigned duties without really questioning anyone's decision making skills. I think Wayne K. advocated that kind of approach. From what i understand he was secretive and did not share info within the organization (heck the CEO wanted more info from the guy and he wouldn't give it up). So that creates a kind of workplace where folks do their jobs, but do not communicate outside their duties.

I'm guessing Bob C. may have seen that and is attempting to open up the system to allow better communication to flow within the management team and to create a healthy culture.

Things may have been in disarray because of the changes made at the top. They may have not been able to give Dusty a framework from which to work. So Dusty does what he does best....wing it.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 02:34 PM
Jocketty (who deserves part of the blame) is not used to having to reign in a manager. LaRussa is pretty good at not winging it. Dusty not so much.

Dusty has to have a solid management team around him to educate him on what's being learned about the game of baseball as it relates to research and stats. He's about 10 years behind the times and a good management team could give him parameters within he could work and make decisions. Essentially a good management team could wire around his deficits and flesh out his strengths (relating to players, possibly hitting, etc..).
Well there is the problem. Jocketty was run out of St Louis because he didn't want to move toward stats and join the 21st century. Couple the two together and woohoo, go Reds.

mbgrayson
07-10-2008, 02:39 PM
Will White for the 1879 Reds was 43-31 pitching 680 innings. And you guys are complaining about one relief appearance by Harang.

And White supposedly threw 517 innings in 1880, the following year. But in 1881, White was down to only 18 innings in 2 games: presumably due to being injured.

This was supposedly followed by 4 more years of 290-577 innings per year. Then, in 1886, he only threw 26 innings and was done for good, at age 32.

This was a whole different kind of baseball. No gloves were used, flat sided bats were allowed until 1893, spit balls were legal (and common), and scorekeeping was not kept the way it is today, or even close. Did you know that batter strike out stats were not counted until 1910? That foul balls didn't usually count as stikes until 1903? That MRIs had not been invented? That there was no night baseball?

It is ridiculous to compare 1879 stats with 2008.

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 02:46 PM
Will White for the 1879 Reds was 43-31 pitching 680 innings. And you guys are complaining about one relief appearance by Harang.

By the way -- managers don't throw extra innings games by using position players in close, competitive situations. If Baker used a position player in that spot, MLB would have fined and suspended him.

Like how the Mariners used a backup catcher the other night when they had 4 unused pitchers on the bench?

PuffyPig
07-10-2008, 02:47 PM
It is ridiculous to compare 1879 stats with 2008.

No more ridiculous that taking seriously a post so obviosly made in jest....

;)

gm
07-10-2008, 02:56 PM
Yup, and that should have been Fogg's role. Fogg really only serves as being useful in a couple roles, and that game in San Diego was one of them.

Dusty sent Fogg out to hold the lead in the 10th. When Fogg put a couple of runners on, Baker brought in Bray

STOO-PID!

Bray should've started that inning, regardless of matchups. If Bill blows the save and the game is retied, then it's up to Fogg to pitch until the game is decided (which would've been long before 18 innings, no doubt...)

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 02:58 PM
Dusty sent Fogg out to hold the lead in the 10th. When Fogg put a couple of runners on, Baker brought in Bray

STOO-PID!

Bray should've started that inning, regardless of matchups. If Bill blows the save and the game is retied, then it's up to Fogg to pitch until the game is decided (which would've been long before 18 innings, no doubt...)

Yep. I can remember that game thread where many of us were screaming for Bray to start the inning.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 02:59 PM
No more ridiculous that taking seriously a post so obviosly made in jest....

;)


Thanks for understanding. Can't believe the guy threw 680 innings. A good manager would have shut him down after 620.

By the way, I acknowledge that the Mariners used a catcher to pitch in a 1-1 game in the 15th inning the other day and lost. Guy apparently had pitched in the minor leagues, but still. I guess Baker could have done the same, not sure fans are paying to see games essentially forfeited in that way.

edabbs44
07-10-2008, 03:00 PM
Like how the Mariners used a backup catcher the other night when they had 4 unused pitchers on the bench?

Were the Reds 18 or so games out of it at that point in the season?

Stormy
07-10-2008, 03:09 PM
Seriously?

You don't know the difference between how the Yankees might choose to use Clemens at the age of 44 and newly signed for four whole months versus how the Reds should be using Harang in his prime and signed through 2011? That difference escapes you? At this point, you are being deliberatly obtuse.

And, on top of that, the one example you use was 4 inning stint by Clemens, followed by a 1 inning stint, followed by a six inning stint. Not comparable to the crazed use of Harang (four innings, 9 Ks, high stress pitches) in the relief appearance that the Reds did followed by a short rest start for longer innings just after.

My initial point was EXACTLY about Harang as an asset, so YES, his age, value, and contract matter to this inquiry. That New York not surprisingly wouldn't give a flying fig about Clemens' long-term health at age 44 and on a 4-month contract does not make him a remotely good comp for my question. Not even close. Universes apart.

Hard to fathom anyone not grasping the the enormous disparity in these two vastly different situations. Small, traditionally pitching bereft franchise's primary asset, in his prime, potentially under large contract through 2011, versus the world's largest payroll taking it's umpteen millionth flier on a few months of a 44 year old retiree-in-waiting. Clemens could spontaneously implode at that juncture and the Yanks couldn't care, whereas the Reds' only opportunity to compete anytime in the near future completely depends upon the continued health and production of the first proven "ace" they've had since Jose Rijo.

Stormy
07-10-2008, 03:13 PM
I can see how Dusty got caught up in the moment re: the 18 inning game. I'll even gie him a pass for getting cornered and getting out managed ...it happens.

But to pitch Harang and 2 other pitchers on short rest-that's just silly. He had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Heck, management had 2 or 3 days to figure out a game plan. Pitching 3 guys on short rest was the best they could do?

Agreed. The inability to adapt their strategy prior to the next start based to the facts on the ground, is perhaps more egregious and troubling than the inexplicable relief outings themselves. It's a bad omen for the protection of our most precious and sparse commodities moving forward, as well.

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 03:21 PM
Hard to fathom anyone not grasping the the enormous disparity in these two vastly different situations. Small, traditionally pitching bereft franchise's primary asset, in his prime, potentially under large contract through 2011, versus the world's largest payroll taking it's umpteen millionth flier on a few months of a 44 year old retiree-in-waiting. Clemens could spontaneously implode at that juncture and the Yanks couldn't care, whereas the Reds' only opportunity to compete anytime in the near future completely depends upon the continued health and production of the first proven "ace" they've had since Jose Rijo.

:thumbup:

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 03:21 PM
Were the Reds 18 or so games out of it at that point in the season?

You pretend like the Reds had a chance at winning something on May 25th. We were 7.5 out of first place in MAY before that game started.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 03:35 PM
You pretend like the Reds had a chance at winning something on May 25th. We were 7.5 out of first place in MAY before that game started.

So Dusty should have put David Ross on the mound and told the fans in his press conference -- "Look, I didn't want to use a starting pitcher there. We're no good anyway. We're 7.5 games out, it's May, we're done. So this is a meaningless game and we decided to roll the dice with David. For fans who watched or listened to the game, sorry, but we just decided it wasn't important enough to really try after all those extra innings."

I agree with the poster who said that bringing Harang back on three days' rest after that outing was a poor decision. The entire organization knew of that decision for several days, surprising nobody nixed it.

membengal
07-10-2008, 03:37 PM
Yes.

If Dusty shoots it straight and says he did what he did to protect Harang and Volquez in bringing in, say, Ross in your hypo, that is what I expect from my favorite team's manager.

ETA: And, if he bites the bullet and admits he mismanaged in his handling of Fogg and Bray, costing them Fogg for long relief, but that he would not compound his error be emperiling Harang and Volquez, respect would grow exponentially.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 03:41 PM
So Dusty should have put David Ross on the mound and told the fans in his press conference -- "Look, I didn't want to use a starting pitcher there. We're no good anyway. We're 7.5 games out, it's May, we're done. So this is a meaningless game and we decided to roll the dice with David. For fans who watched or listened to the game, sorry, but we just decided it wasn't important enough to really try after all those extra innings."

I agree with the poster who said that bringing Harang back on three days' rest after that outing was a poor decision. The entire organization knew of that decision for several days, surprising nobody nixed it.

David Ross, no.... he was the only catcher left on the team. Corey Patterson? Absolutely. I would have expected him to justify it by saying 'Rather than risk injuring Harang or Volquez and risk injury that causes them to be out for a prolonged period of time, we felt it was a better choice to roll the dice on Patterson keeping the ball inside this huge ballpark'.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 03:46 PM
The absence of any word so far today isn't a good sign, IMO. Hope I'm wrong.

Stormy
07-10-2008, 03:49 PM
So Dusty should have put David Ross on the mound and told the fans in his press conference -- "Look, I didn't want to use a starting pitcher there. We're no good anyway. We're 7.5 games out, it's May, we're done. So this is a meaningless game and we decided to roll the dice with David. For fans who watched or listened to the game, sorry, but we just decided it wasn't important enough to really try after all those extra innings."

Better than telling the fanbase, "Sorry that the cornerstone of the franchise is shelved, and his future performance uncertain, but he sure did give us a fine 4 innings of relief in that season-deciding loss back in May." ;)

Seriously, he wouldn't have had to say either. You save your long man for such a situation, and if you violate that cardinal rule, you bite the bullet and let some fodder finish the game. In order to compete over the course of a 162 game season, you need 30+ good starts from your #1, which is a hell of a lot more important than the results of a 4 inning relief stint in May. It would be like a coach advising his marathon runner to suddenly go into a full sprint 2 miles into the race: Any temporary lead he builds before flaming out, is more than deleted by the after effect of never making it to the finish line.

As a good manager you learn to live to fight another day, not offer up your Ace go out on his shield in a relief effort, followed by further short rest in May. I don't understand why this is so hard to grasp. Yes, you try to win EVERY game, EVERY day, but you don't cannibalize yourself in the process, nor to you disregard the pace of the season in an all-or-nothing desperation ploy in May for the sake of 1/162 of a year.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 03:52 PM
As a good manager you learn to live to fight another day, not offer up your Ace go out on his shield in a relief effort, followed by further short rest in May. I don't understand why this is so hard to grasp. Yes, you try to win EVERY game, EVERY day, but you don't cannibalize yourself in the process, nor to you disregard the pace of the season in an all-or-nothing desperation ploy in May.

Putting a position player on the mound in a tied extra inning game is not trying to win every day. It's capitulation in a supposed competitive sports event which people paid money to watch. That shouldn't be hard to grasp.

dougdirt
07-10-2008, 03:55 PM
Putting a position player on the mound in a tied extra inning game is not trying to win every day. It's capitulation in a supposed competitive sports event which people paid money to watch. That shouldn't be hard to grasp.

Yeah, and now all of those people who paid to watch Harang pitch all year might be SOL because of it. Firstly, it was a road game. No more than 50 Reds fans were at that game probably. Do you honestly think that anyone cares about May 25th's game if it means risking the arm of Aaron Harang? I would rather the Reds go out there and intentionally walk 4 guys in a row than have any starter on my team pitch on short rest in a relief appearance.

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 04:07 PM
The absence of any word so far today isn't a good sign, IMO. Hope I'm wrong.

During the radio interviews during the game they were esitmating around 5pm for an announcement.

Cooper
07-10-2008, 04:08 PM
KC61: not to snark, but i'm guessing there weren't too many folks even left in that park by the time that thing was over and it would surely be the case if the game had gone 18 innings in GABP. There might be 1000 folks left in the stands by the time that thing gets over.

Dusty and the management team gets paid to figure out what kinds of risk they want/need to make and when to make it. That's freakin 100% of what management is all about. That's management's job- that's why organizations create management teams so they can manage risk and create growth (stability). I have the feeling it wasn't even talked about and that makes me sick. What the heck do you have a management team for if you don't talk about those type of things (managing your #3 asset in the company). I would never leave that decision in the hands of 1 person. If you do: then everyone else might as well go home.

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 04:10 PM
Were the Reds 18 or so games out of it at that point in the season?

Was it May, or October?

hebroncougar
07-10-2008, 04:13 PM
Putting a position player on the mound in a tied extra inning game is not trying to win every day. It's capitulation in a supposed competitive sports event which people paid money to watch. That shouldn't be hard to grasp.

So should Baker be fined when the Reds throw their flavor of the week out their for their 5th starter for "not being competitive"? It's one thing to put a position player out there when you haven't exhausted your bullpen, it's another thing to do it when your only options are your #1 and #2 staters who just finished pitching two days ago.

BRM
07-10-2008, 05:04 PM
From Jayson Stark:



The Yankees, on the other hand, don't seem interested in Bedard. And it's dubious Toronto would even talk to them about Burnett. While they've checked out Aaron Harang, he might be untradeable now that his forearm has a date with an MRI machine. Can Melky Cabrera net them a decent arm? Clubs that have spoken with the Yankees say he's the player they're most willing to dangle. One thing the Yankees can't do, even if they fall apart, is sell. Virtually every veteran player on the roster has a no-trade clause.

Gainesville Red
07-10-2008, 05:47 PM
Fay:



Aaron Harang's MRI was normal. He has a right forearm strain. He'll be re-evaluated this weekend. That's the news the Reds wanted to hear.

nate
07-10-2008, 05:50 PM
Fay:

Excellent!

Joseph
07-10-2008, 05:52 PM
DL or no?

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 05:55 PM
Fay: Aaron Harang's MRI was normal. He has a right forearm strain. He'll be re-evaluated this weekend. That's the news the Reds wanted to hear.

Finally, the Reds catch a major break from potential disaster. :clap:

Degenerate39
07-10-2008, 05:55 PM
DL or no?

I doubt it. They'll skip his next start and probably try to give him a few days off after the All Star break.

Big Klu
07-10-2008, 05:56 PM
DL or no?

I would say yes. It wouldn't hurt to shut him down for a couple of weeks, and somebody has to go to make room for Homer on Sunday.

RedsManRick
07-10-2008, 05:56 PM
I'd still love to see the Reds DL him. There's no reason to mess around with this thing. Get him healthy.

Kc61
07-10-2008, 05:57 PM
Too bad Harang wasn't available today, Reds could have used him in relief.

Good news.

Now he needs to straighten out his pitching.

membengal
07-10-2008, 05:58 PM
I sure do hope they DL him and shut him down for several weeks. No reason to do anything other than treat him with delicate kid gloves.

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 06:04 PM
I'd still love to see the Reds DL him. There's no reason to mess around with this thing. Get him healthy.

Very sound and wise judgment, especially to protect themselves and Harang.

Big Klu
07-10-2008, 06:05 PM
I doubt it. They'll skip his next start and probably try to give him a few days off after the All Star break.

Putting Harang on the DL would have the same effect, and it would make room for Homer on Sunday.

7/8 @ CHI: Harang (his last start)
7/9 @ CHI: Cueto
7/10 @ CHI: Arroyo
7/11 @ MIL: Fogg
7/12 @ MIL: Volquez
7/13 @ MIL: Bailey
7/14 ***All-Star Break***
7/15 ***All-Star Break***
7/16 ***All-Star Break***
7/17 v. NY: Cueto
7/18 v. NY: Arroyo
7/19 v. NY: Fogg
7/20 v. NY: Volquez (gets a couple of extra days after All-Star appearance)
7/21 v. SD: Bailey
7/22 v. SD: Cueto
7/23 v. SD: Arroyo
7/24 --OFF-- (Harang would be eligible to come off DL)
7/25 v. COL: Volquez
7/26 v. COL: TBA (Could be Harang, if he's ready)

LvJ
07-10-2008, 06:09 PM
Good news. Put him on the DL and go by the schedule listed above.

Stormy
07-10-2008, 06:18 PM
Fay: Aaron Harang's MRI was normal. He has a right forearm strain. He'll be re-evaluated this weekend. That's the news the Reds wanted to hear

Best news of the season, by far. If the Reds are going to build and progress from their current standing over the course of the next several years, it is absolutely imperative that they begin with a pitching foundation of a healthy and productive Harang, Volquez and Cueto.

I agree with the schedule Big Klu, and others posted above: Place him on the DL, let his comfort level determine his return after the AS Break, and then don't overburden him immediately upon his return. When healthy, he's the top proven asset on this team, so treat him as such from this point forward.

BuckeyeRedleg
07-10-2008, 06:20 PM
Best news of the season, by far. If the Reds are going to build and progress from their current standing over the course of the next several years, it is absolutely imperative that they begin with a pitching foundation of a healthy and productive Harang, Volquez and Cueto.

I agree with the schedule Big Klu, and others posted above: Place him on the DL, let his comfort level determine his return after the AS Break, and then don't overburden him immediately upon his return. When healthy, he's the top proven asset on this team, so treat him as such from this point forward.

Amen.

WVRedsFan
07-10-2008, 06:21 PM
This was a needed scare for the Reds. It just proves you cannot overwork a pitcher no matter how much faith you have in everyone else. His last outing was a prime example. He had nothing, couldn't find the plate, and was hurting (whether he says he wasn't or not), and still Dusty kept him in there. Silly stuff.

jojo
07-10-2008, 06:27 PM
I'd still love to see the Reds DL him. There's no reason to mess around with this thing. Get him healthy.

Yes-especially with the ASB eating some of the DL time.

Benihana
07-10-2008, 07:07 PM
Good news. Put him on the DL and go by the schedule listed above.

Yep.

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 07:54 PM
Excellent news. That made my day. I'd still give him a couple weeks of rest.

GAC
07-10-2008, 07:55 PM
C'mon, we put Fogg on the DL because of his ERA, why can't we DL Harang over his record?

Fogg was put on the DL AFTER being diagnosed with a sore lower back. ;)

OnBaseMachine
07-10-2008, 08:02 PM
Strain for Harang, off to DL

By Hal McCoy | Thursday, July 10, 2008, 05:38 PM

They held the news until the last pitch of Thursday’s game, but at least it was semi-good news.

The MRI on Aaron Harang’s sore right forearm came back negative and was diagnosed as a strain. He will be re-evaluated next week.

But he also will be placed on the disabled list, said general manager Walt Jocketty, who was pleased with the diagnosis.

If he recovers, he can come off the DL, which means he would miss one turn after the All-Star break.

“The MRI was negative, classified as just a strain of the forearm,” said Jocketty. “So that’s good. We’ll shut him down, put him on the disabled list, let him rest. He was told not to throw for a week, but we’re confident he’ll get right back into it.”

Said manager Dusty Baker, “That’s great news on Aaron. This is what the doctor thought. Just a strained muscle. That’s huge news. He was instructed not to pick up a ball for a week. Rest it. Treat it. Work out. Train. And come back smoking.”

http://www.daytondailynews.com/o/content/shared-gen/blogs/dayton/cincinnatireds/

klw
07-10-2008, 08:03 PM
Just to be safe Dr. K performed surgery on Harang's labrum anyway.

Will M
07-10-2008, 08:19 PM
Wonderful news. IMO one of the strengths of the current Reds team is the 1-2-3 punch of SP and the 1-2 punch in the pen. Losing Harang would have been awful.

Spring~Fields
07-10-2008, 08:26 PM
Fogg was put on the DL AFTER being diagnosed with a sore lower back. ;)

Well certainly, of course. ;)

Chip R
07-10-2008, 09:17 PM
This was a needed scare for the Reds. It just proves you cannot overwork a pitcher no matter how much faith you have in everyone else.


Hopefully. Harang put in a lot of innings even before Dusty was hired. Of course the Reds could see this and feel that since it wasn't anything serious, then he wasn't really overworked in the first place.

mbgrayson
07-10-2008, 09:40 PM
Harang to the DL per John Fay (http://news.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?category=blog07&plckController=Blog&plckScript=blogScript&plckElementId=blogDest&plckBlogPage=BlogViewPost&plckPostId=Blog%3ae57bcc87-152a-4f72-96fb-cc08b1f396efPost%3a40613bb6-9b23-4fcb-a9e1-d24b51935c91&sid=sitelife.cincinnati.com)tonight.

Aaron Harang will go on the DL. Walt Jocketty expects him to be ready at the end of the two weeks. Harang has been order not to pick up a baseball for a week.

oregonred
07-10-2008, 10:54 PM
Best news of the season, by far. If the Reds are going to build and progress from their current standing over the course of the next several years, it is absolutely imperative that they begin with a pitching foundation of a healthy and productive Harang, Volquez and Cueto.



What he said, best news of the year for the Reds

For 2009/2010 to be competitive, the equation starts with a healthy Harang (or at least a return on assets that Harang would bring in the marketplace).

1-2-3 Harang, Volquez, Cueto and 1-2-3 Cordero, Burton, Bray. That's solid. I love what Cueto's been doing the last couple of months (shoddy defense nonwithstanding that cost him 3ER last night -- grrrr)

Tony Cloninger
07-10-2008, 11:49 PM
Also glad to hear.......and I was one who did not think the relief outing was a terrible thing...,but the last outing vs Chicago was. He did not have it at all.....should have been very clear.

I know he has been worked hard before Dusty....and since he has not had any major problems before.....why wouldn't Dusty think he was a horse in the Livan hernandez mold? He looked to be ....a throwback...a rare throwback...but one who could go 230 innings a year...for at least the next 5-7 years. You need this type of pitcher on your staff. Now we know.....he needs to be reined in a little but please do not turn him into a 6 inning...barely 100 pitch pitcher. If monitored correctly...he can still be a 7 inning...100-110 pitches..type of pitcher.

Cyclone792
07-11-2008, 12:00 AM
Excellent news from the Harang camp. Put him on the DL and give him extra time. Absolutely do not rush him back. Be cautious, and give him more than enough rest. This season isn't worth rushing Harang back for one or two extra starts. The Reds need him healthy for 2009 and beyond.

As others have stated, the Reds need to count their blessing and let this be a notice that they need to take better care of the pitching staff.

AmarilloRed
07-11-2008, 01:05 AM
I was hoping we would get good news from the MRI, and that seems to have happened. Still, the Reds should be more careful how they use Harang in the future. We will need a healthy Harang for any future playoff run.

puca
07-11-2008, 06:44 AM
This is still the Reds medical staff we are talking about right?

I hope their diagnosis is spot on this time.

RichRed
07-11-2008, 07:33 AM
Just to be safe Dr. K performed surgery on Harang's labrum anyway.

And took out his appendix "since we're already here."

Seriously, this is great news and I'm glad to see the Reds place Harang on the DL to get some rest for that arm.

Roy Tucker
07-11-2008, 08:38 AM
This is still the Reds medical staff we are talking about right?

I hope their diagnosis is spot on this time.

Maybe they MRI'ed his left arm.

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 02:52 PM
This just isn't true. A smart manager always leaves himself an out just in case. Unless he has no other choice, he doesn't leave the possibility of putting his most valuable players at risk. .

I disagree. No manager in the game with a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 11th would plan for the game possibly going 18 innings. None would.

Think about it.. you'd need a 15 man pitching staff to be able to cover the contingency that any given game could go 18 innings, because your options out of the bullpen become very limited otherwise.

Big Klu
07-11-2008, 02:54 PM
I disagree. No manager in the game with a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 11th would plan for the game possibly going 18 innings. None would.

Think about it.. you'd need a 15 man pitching staff to be able to cover the contingency that any given game could go 18 innings, because your options out of the bullpen become very limited otherwise.

I believe that the 15-man pitching staff is a very real possibility in the not-too-distant future.

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 02:58 PM
Seriously?

You don't know the difference between how the Yankees might choose to use Clemens at the age of 44 and newly signed for four whole months versus how the Reds should be using Harang in his prime and signed through 2011? That difference escapes you? At this point, you are being deliberatly obtuse.
.


No, I'm not being obtuse. I thought you wanted an example of a starter in relief. But I guess if you are convinced that relief outing ruined Harang's career, then we have a fundamental disagreement on the amount of risk taken by Dusty..

I'm sure if I looked long enough I could find a guy in his prime that was newly signed and used in relief, but since this is a difficult thing to search for (and it isn't going o change anyone's mind), we'll leave it at that.

Does the clean MRI change anyone's mind? What's it going to take to convince people that the relief appearance did not irrecovably damage Harang? In all seriousness, if Harang gets hurt in 3 years, I suspect people will bring this up again..

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 03:00 PM
Larussa doesn't burn through his pen so quickly that he'd have to go to his starters in the 13th. I'd be stunned if that has ever happened.


It hasn't happened because games seldom go to the 13 inning..
With a 2 run lead in the bottom of the 11th, you don't expect the game to go another 7 innings.

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 03:03 PM
Like how the Mariners used a backup catcher the other night when they had 4 unused pitchers on the bench?

What was the game situation that caused them to do that? Was the game tied?

nate
07-11-2008, 03:07 PM
Does the clean MRI change anyone's mind? What's it going to take to convince people that the relief appearance did not irrecovably damage Harang? In all seriousness, if Harang gets hurt in 3 years, I suspect people will bring this up again..

Does the clean MRI mean that there's nothing physically wrong?

Does the clean MRI mean that the relief appearance was a good idea?

Does the clean MRI mean that if he gets hurt in 3 years, the relief appearance and workload doesn't have anything to do with it?

Serious questions! Not being snarky at all!

Honestly!

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 03:11 PM
Hard to fathom anyone not grasping the the enormous disparity in these two vastly different situations. Small, traditionally pitching bereft franchise's primary asset, in his prime, potentially under large contract through 2011, versus the world's largest payroll taking it's umpteen millionth flier on a few months of a 44 year old retiree-in-waiting. Clemens could spontaneously implode at that juncture and the Yanks couldn't care, whereas the Reds' only opportunity to compete anytime in the near future completely depends upon the continued health and production of the first proven "ace" they've had since Jose Rijo.

No, Clemens was a key pickup for the Yanks. Why do you think they paid over 20 million for a partial season of him (or thereabouts?) You act as if he was a Fogg-type signing for them and they could care less if he blew up.
The Yanks were trying to win a championship that year. Based on what they paid Clemens, they considered him a valuable asset -- certainly one they would not abuse -- certainly one they hoped that would start playoff games.

If Harang was older and on a one year 20 million dollar contract, I doubt anyone would give Dusty a free pass for using him in relief. The howls would be just as loud or louder (especially if we were in the pennant race)

Look at the pitcher abuse points and heavy workload that Harang has had under Miley and Narron. Maybe you complained about that (I don't remember).. That's more risky than what Dusty has done to him.

Harang said he was fine prior to his last outing. What are Dusty and Pole supposed to do? Use mindreading techniques? Force him to have an MRI before every start?

Harang can only blame himself for continuing to pitch when he had soreness.

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 03:13 PM
David Ross, no.... he was the only catcher left on the team. Corey Patterson? Absolutely. I would have expected him to justify it by saying 'Rather than risk injuring Harang or Volquez and risk injury that causes them to be out for a prolonged period of time, we felt it was a better choice to roll the dice on Patterson keeping the ball inside this huge ballpark'.

I don't think Patterson was left on the bench, hadn't he already been double switched in the game at that point? Do you send Harang out to play CF then? I forget when it happened, but at one point the Reds only had Ross left.

REDREAD
07-11-2008, 03:20 PM
Does the clean MRI mean that there's nothing physically wrong?

With Doc Hollywood, you never know. He's underestimated a lot of injuries, perhaps from pressure from the Reds.




Does the clean MRI mean that the relief appearance was a good idea?


It doesn't mean anything. No real causation can be tied to that relief outing either way.. IMO, the relief outing wasn't abusive. I know 90% of the thread disagrees with me and thought Dusty should've just thrown the game. The reality though is that sometimes you can't limit every starting pitcher to 90 or 100 pitches every 5 days and pamper them their entire career.



Does the clean MRI mean that if he gets hurt in 3 years, the relief appearance and workload doesn't have anything to do with it?
!

Well, it seems reasonable that an injury three years from now probably wasn't caused by that relief appearance.

Big Klu
07-11-2008, 04:24 PM
I don't think Patterson was left on the bench, hadn't he already been double switched in the game at that point? Do you send Harang out to play CF then? I forget when it happened, but at one point the Reds only had Ross left.

Ross started and caught all 18 innings. Bako was the only position player left on the bench when Harang entered the game in the 13th (he eventually pinch-hit for Harang). And the only other pitchers left were Volquez and Cueto. (Cueto was the only player who did not play in that game.)

GAC
07-11-2008, 07:22 PM
What evidence is set forth that Harang has been overworked (or abused) by Baker?

The last two season's he averaged 230+ IP/year. He's projected to throw 210 this year.

And in comparison to the last 2-3 years there is no great disparity in #P/PA, #P/IP, or #P/Game.

My personal belief is that Harang's current injury (strain) came more from him feeling the emotional (mental) pressure of such a slow start, frustration from not getting any run support in the early stages, and Aaron trying to make mechanical adjustments that not only compounded the situation, but contributed to the current situation.

I think Aaron will be alright. Give him a couple weeks off where all he does is watch baseball.

IslandRed
07-11-2008, 08:15 PM
Ross started and caught all 18 innings. Bako was the only position player left on the bench when Harang entered the game in the 13th (he eventually pinch-hit for Harang). And the only other pitchers left were Volquez and Cueto. (Cueto was the only player who did not play in that game.)

Most of us, if air-dropped into the dugout in the 13th inning with the game state as it was, would have made the same choice to go to Harang.

I am not convinced that using a starter in relief is automatically terrible. These guys pitch between starts anyway, it's just on the side instead of facing actual hitters. 63 pitches is probably an overly long throw day, though.

HOWEVER... while granting REDREAD's point that a manager doesn't plan on a game going 18 innings, if he's used his bullpen such that he has no choice but to grab a starting pitcher when the game goes to the 13th, at least one wrong decision was made along the way.

Big Klu
07-11-2008, 10:21 PM
Most of us, if air-dropped into the dugout in the 13th inning with the game state as it was, would have made the same choice to go to Harang.

I am not convinced that using a starter in relief is automatically terrible. These guys pitch between starts anyway, it's just on the side instead of facing actual hitters. 63 pitchers is probably an overly long throw day, though.

HOWEVER... while granting REDREAD's point that a manager doesn't plan on a game going 18 innings, if he's used his bullpen such that he has no choice but to grab a starting pitcher when the game goes to the 13th, at least one wrong decision was made along the way.

I agree with everything you just said.

Always Red
07-12-2008, 08:13 PM
This was a needed scare for the Reds. It just proves you cannot overwork a pitcher no matter how much faith you have in everyone else. His last outing was a prime example. He had nothing, couldn't find the plate, and was hurting (whether he says he wasn't or not), and still Dusty kept him in there. Silly stuff.

Really?

Yes, he walked 7 batters- no question that he couldn't find the plate. That doesn't mean that he is hurt, that might mean that he can't find the plate!

I watched the game on TV, and Jeff Brantley said that Harang had absolutely great stuff that day (Pole confirmed that his pre-game bullpen session was "great") - in fact Brantley said that he'd never seen his ball move that much!

Hurting? 1st I've heard that he was obviously hurting- I watch and read all the time, and what was said was that his forearm was stiff the next day.

SMcGavin
07-12-2008, 08:54 PM
Wait Harang doesn't need Tommy John surgery? I thought it was a lock because of that one time Ryan Dempster had forearm tightness and he needed TJ surgery. I'm so confused.

Chip R
07-13-2008, 12:00 AM
HOWEVER... while granting REDREAD's point that a manager doesn't plan on a game going 18 innings, if he's used his bullpen such that he has no choice but to grab a starting pitcher when the game goes to the 13th, at least one wrong decision was made along the way.


That's correct. You don't plan on a game going 18 innings but once you've used your short guys out of the pen and it's after the 10th inning, you kind of want to start thinking that this game may go on a few more innings. Maybe not 18 but 14 or 15. That's where the long man comes into play. The Reds didn't have to use their long man during regulation so he was all ready to go in case it went extras. Dusty used him like a LOOGY and he got burnt. But in Dusty's defense, the bullpen blew about 3 saves that day and if just one of them had been converted, Harang's, Volquez' and Fogg's usage would have been moot points.