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coachw513
08-01-2008, 02:33 AM
I decided to write you because I've already been told by Bob that losing isn't an option and that we are going to win, so that's about all I needed to hear from him...

I'm also not going to write to Dusty out of fear that at some point in the conversation the words "Corey Patterson", "CF" and "lead-off" will be used in the same sentance..quite honestly my health is not capable of handling such immediate stress...

So it's up to you Walt...see, I have faced increasing scrutiny and sarcasm related to my undaunted love for your Reds...nothing like 1 of my friends noting to me in June "Man, I would have thought you'd have given that team up a long time ago"...or maybe the joy of a family vacation with my wife's "people" only to be told: "I don't know a single Reds fan in the whole world except for you. It's not much fun, is it?"

Well, no it isn't...well documented earlier this week, this decade of futility may not be the worst in team history, but it's pretty darned awful...and when you consider it began with the anticipation of adding baseball's greatest player to a near playoff team, well how exactly did it go wrong???...

Well, I could start with some discussion about the lack of continuity among management, throw in some detailed analysis about draft pick success and the failures at trying to create a quality ML pitching staff...but I'm going to try and stay positive and talk about the chore from here...

I mean, there are days it feels a lot better around here...the young arms Volquez, Cueto, Thompson, Bailey, Burton...Bruce, Votto, Encarnacion, Phillips...it's a nice little core of guys for you to work around, yes???

Well, thanks for asking, I would like to offer some thoughts...

That Adam Dunn guy is really good...you mind getting off your butt and signing him to 4 years/65 million, WHILE ALSO GAINING UNDERSTANDING FROM BOB THAT OVERALL FRANCHISE PAYROLL WILL INCREASE 20 PERCENT PER YEAR THE NEXT 3 YEARS...first the Dunn part...Walt, I don't expect you to understand all the stats out there nowadays...I certainly don't...but I do understand this...if we score more runs (or allow less runs), we'll almost certainly win more games...even if we consider Dunn to be a hack in LF (and I think he's much improved) the guy is a run producing machine in a run-dysfunctional lineup (feel free to explain some of that to Dusty)...but some think that 15 million + to Dunn is too great a cost to our overall payroll...well, then Mr. "We Will Win" needs to trust his good buddy and cut loose a little more coin the next few years...

2. Trade Arroyo for value if possible...at 12 million next year, his greatest asset might well be his vacant contract allowing those 12 million to help in negotiations with CC, Sheets, et al...and signing 1 of those guys (or someone similar) is critical to the development and protection of the young arms of Volquez, Cueto, Bailey and Thompson.

3. What to trade for??...the list is fairly simple...we need a CF or RF that is a high OBP RH stick with a great defensive player...we need a primary catcher, one that would share time with David Ross (but hopefully be better than him)...we need 1 top of rotation starter and 1 more setup man

4.Make good decisions with the "chump change"...we don't need any more 3M for Patterson contracts...but giving the appropriate offer to Hairston JR. is important because he could play a role here long term if the money makes sense...I thnk we need to cut bait with Freel and Weathers, necessitating the need to find a quality young reserve OF who can bring some RH speed and defense to the mix, and 1 more quality established set up man, preferably one with high k%, high k/bb rates and low FB%....find a guy that misses bats, right??...oh and why we are at it, can we go find a realistic big bat off the bench...it really is embarassing (unless he's batter against Greg Maddux) to have Javier Valentin being our big bopper in late game PH situations...we can't pluck anyone out there to be better than that???

5.There would be nothing wrong with Affeldt (read cost-effective above), Lincoln, Bray, Burton and Cordero the essense of the pen...leaving 2 spots for the resurgent Majewski (just seeing if you were paying attention) and for that young guy Roenicke...do you mind getting him up here asap...let's see what he can do because he has the right arm for the job...

6. Speaking of the rest of the year, can you convince your buddy Dusty to put Chris Dickerson in his lineup 3-4 times a week to see what his skill set might bring to this team...we really do need a great defensive outfielder...Stubbs isn't ready yet, but maybe Dickerson can pull off a "garry maddox" look a like...speaking of defense, why not look at Brandon Phillips at SS for the rest of the season??...I think Phillips is GG-capable at both spots, but clearly SS is more important and would have a palpable effect on EE over at 3rd and with Dunn in left...with Griffey gone, Phillips clearly moves up the totem-pole in leadership...ok Brandon, time to show your teammates you are taking charge of your team...make us better!!...it will make Keppinger more suited defensively and additionally makes it easier for our promising prospects who don't project to SS but can be ML infielders..

7. So to try to summarize:
Sign Dunn...trade Arroyo (and other fungible parts-a Keppinger type or minor league positional prospects) for catching help or OF/leadoff help AND TO HELP in the payroll flexibility to go sign a franchise #1 starting pitcher...use trades and FA to find your leadoff hitter/defender, catcher, 2B (since Phillips is now our SS), and 1-2 more "miss bats" quality relievers...

Anyways, I just want to wear my Reds jerseys down here in Florida without folks laughing or smirking...I just want to turn on my Direct TV and get fired up about an actual pennant chase with a good baseball team...and I need it to be you to get it done, Walt...is this too much to ask???

Well, stay in touch and I'll be watching while my wife simply rolls her eyes:rolleyes: and reminds me we go through this angst every year...I guess I'm hopeful we can change that...

Right Walt??

BuckeyeRedleg
08-01-2008, 11:38 AM
:beerme:

Great job as always, coach!

I hope you did, indeed, send this to Walt.

note: I agree with every single thing except Hairston. I don't believe he should be in future plans unless that future is a one year contract as a utility/bench player, paying him no more than $2M.

REDREAD
08-01-2008, 11:58 AM
We need to realize that Dunn probably doesn't want to come back. Just like Jr welcomed the chance to leave, I bet Dunn will too.

We can tell Walt to just sign Dunn to a 3 or 4 year deal, but why would Dunn do that when he can get 6-7 years on the open market? Dunn saw what happened to Jr when Jr gave this team a hometown discount. Why would Dunn want to come back for a 3 year tour of getting crap dumped on him? Now that Jr is going, he's going to have to bear the full brunt of all of it.

Likewise, if you are going to trade Arroyo for prospects, the white flag is up anyhow. You might as well let Dunn walk too. The same reasons for shedding Arroyo apply to Dunn too.

Ltlabner
08-01-2008, 12:02 PM
Dear Walt,

Please ignore BCasts desires to just win with the current team because the fans really woln't be juiced to see an 80 win team instead of a 76 win team. We all understand the "psycological" importance of being a .500 team, but 81-81 or 82-80 reallk isn't going to put fannies in the seats. I appreicate BCasts desire for "winning baseball" but I'd rather have winning baseball that results in playoff appearances, not winning baseball that mearly meets a technical definition.

We've endured a long string of horrable seasons. Another one isn't going to destroy the franchise. Do what you have to do, .500 be dammed, so that next year is actually better. Where's the "victory" of being .500 this year, if it results in being .500 next year? Why not be .475 this year, if it results in moves that get us into "real" contention next year?

While Bill Cunningham isn't an authority on baseball in any universe, he told Phill Cast "win ball-games" as a marketing promotion back on opening day. All of the $1 dog nights, and family sections are nice, but "win ball-games" is a surefire way of putting more people through the gates at GABP. Bill might be nutty, but he's right.

Thanks for the time,

Section 220 fan

BCubb2003
08-01-2008, 12:11 PM
Dear Walt:

Disregard the letters from all those other knuckleheads at RedsZone. Here's what you've got to do...

Red in Chicago
08-01-2008, 12:15 PM
Dear Walt,
Tell Bob to sell the team to Mark Cuban. I hear he's interested in owning a ball-club, and I'm sure he'd open up his wallet and get us a winner. Thanks.

BRM
08-01-2008, 12:26 PM
Ltlabner needs to get with the program. It's .500 or bust for 2008!!

OnBaseMachine
08-01-2008, 12:58 PM
We need to realize that Dunn probably doesn't want to come back. Just like Jr welcomed the chance to leave, I bet Dunn will too.


Yet he says over and over that he wants to.

BCubb2003
08-01-2008, 02:01 PM
Yet he says over and over that he wants to.

Can you imagine what we'd do to him if he said otherwise?

PuffyPig
08-01-2008, 02:09 PM
..... What to trade for??...the list is fairly simple...we need a CF or RF that is a high OBP RH stick with a great defensive ......and 1 more quality established set up man, preferably one with high k%, high k/bb rates and low FB%....find a guy that misses bats, right?

I agree with much of what you say, but I think it is very simplistic on accasion.

A CF with a high OBA and a great defensive player? Juan Pierre is none of those things and got a 5 year contract for $50M.

An established set up guy who strikes out plenty, walks few and gives up few HR's? You are talking about elite pitchers here.

To get these few players, along with a good defensive catcher who can hit (there's about 6 in the majors who fit that description right now), who do you propose we trade?

You certainly won't get three premium players at the most premium positions with trading "stuff".

M2
08-01-2008, 02:13 PM
Can you imagine what we'd do to him if he said otherwise?

That's my thinking too.

If I were Dunn's agent, I'd be urging him to entertain thoughts of life in another locale. He really does owe it to himself to see if there's a better fit with a different team.

OnBaseMachine
08-01-2008, 02:29 PM
Can you imagine what we'd do to him if he said otherwise?

I understand that, but it's quotes like this one below that has me convinced Dunn wants to stay in Cincy:


FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal reports Cincinnati Reds OF Adam Dunn wants to stay in Cincinnati. "If you would have asked me last year, I probably would have said no," Dunn said. "But this is the first time since I've been here that we've actually had guys come up through the organization and make a significant impact, not just be role players. And I know we've got a couple of pitchers down in Triple-A right now who will help even more. The young talent is finally good here. I definitely see a future - definitely."

Dunn has been here through all the hard times and finally sees some direction with this club and wants to be here for the good times now. This is the most talent this team has had since Dunn has been here, and there's more in the minors. Dunner seems to realize this and probably feels this team can win in another year with the right moves.

Homer Bailey
08-01-2008, 03:07 PM
What can we do to get Dunn resigned? You think if we made some kind of petition to at least let Walt and Bob know that we want Dunn resigned? Let him know that the TRUE fans know his value? I'm dead serious. I know it seems kind of lame but I'm going to be devestated if he's not a Red next season.

REDREAD
08-01-2008, 03:24 PM
Can you imagine what we'd do to him if he said otherwise?

My point exactly.

Dunn also said the Reds have not approached him with an offer. Is that not very telling?

Think about how many times this story has played out (with all clubs).. "We will wait until the offseason to negotiate with our potential FA".. how many times has the guy come back? Not many. A pretty low win expectancy..

Walt is a class guy. He's not going to blab to the press that Dunn wants to leave. (if that was the case)

reds44
08-01-2008, 03:26 PM
We need to realize that Dunn probably doesn't want to come back. Just like Jr welcomed the chance to leave, I bet Dunn will too.

I don't think the two situations have anything to do with each other. Griffey saw an opprotunity for what may be his last chance for a ring, and took it. Nobody can blame him for that. Dunn is entering the prime of his career and Cincinnati is the only team he has ever played for.

OnBaseMachine
08-01-2008, 03:28 PM
My point exactly.

Dunn also said the Reds have not approached him with an offer. Is that not very telling?


Dunn can't force the Reds to make him an offer. Read the post above you. I believe what Dunn says right there. Last year he says he would have said no to a LTC, now that the Reds have called up Bruce and Cueto, and acquired another stud youngster in Volquez he sees things are turning for the better in Cincy and wants to stay. Plus someone mentioned his wife is from Kentucky which is probably another reason he'd like to stay here.

coachw513
08-01-2008, 03:44 PM
I agree with much of what you say, but I think it is very simplistic on accasion.

A CF with a high OBA and a great defensive player? Juan Pierre is none of those things and got a 5 year contract for $50M.

An established set up guy who strikes out plenty, walks few and gives up few HR's? You are talking about elite pitchers here.

To get these few players, along with a good defensive catcher who can hit (there's about 6 in the majors who fit that description right now), who do you propose we trade?

You certainly won't get three premium players at the most premium positions with trading "stuff".

You are correct, I doubt that trading our dreck would accomplish those things...

IMHO the Reds must increase payroll along with exploring the trade market...the Reds payroll is less than everyone in the division except the Pirates(with all the purging of good players, do the Pirates even count??)...money might not be able to buy you love, but a 15 million bump in payroll certainly could buy Ben Sheets or CC Sabathia, especially since the core of the talented Reds are under relative financial control for the next couple of years...

So in my little world the Reds could use Arroyo's ballooning 12 m contract ALONG with expanded payroll (we want to compete, right Bob??)...to better restate, the offseason should be all about these 3 big things: resign Dunn, get Sheets or Sabathia and get the right OF replacement...

I think the bullpen is in good order...I'd let Weathers walk (the guys been a great soldier) and I'd try to resign Affeldt on the cheap unless he priced himself out...my point in my earlier point was to stress continuing to find "miss bats" arms...one of the keys will be a last 50 games analysis of Maj, Lincoln and Bray...they've been extremely in their 2nd tier relief roles...can this continue??

I'm higher than most on Ross as a platoon catcher...let Bako and Valentin go and find a solid defensive, LH hitting backstop to go with him...the black hole of this spot in the lineup is acceptable if you solve the OF dilemma...

Because I believe that Votto, Bruce and even EE will continue to have their OPS greatly improve next year, it's the great need to have a legit table setter at the top of the order and YES, I'd spend good money/assets (prospects) to get it...once again, since in my world I've resigned Dunn and gotten 1 starting pitcher, this is the remaining HUGE NEED...

I have to defer to those smarter than me here that contend that Hairston is NOT the long term answer, but if we could bottle up this year's performance, that's what we need at the top of the order...

Oh, I'd also really appreciate it if Walt might speak to Dusty and convince him that the earth will not cease to spin on its axis if LH hitters are bunched up in the lineup, especially against RH pitching...

Player X (with Hairston's 2008 impact)
Bruce
Votto
Dunn
Encarnacion
Phillips
Keppinger/Gonzalez
Ross/LH platoon
Sheets/Harang/Volquez/Cueto/Bailey

Randomly:
1. I'd really explore Phillips at SS...I'd also let him "enjoy" hitting 3rd against LH and 6th or 7th against RH...
2. I don't mind Keppinger at leadoff at all...as long as the OF newcomer is capable of being an above average defender with OB% strengths
3. I believe in Homer Bailey...there, I said it...solid 5th starter next year, absolutely...
4. In another thread, the name Abreu was brought up...he intrigues me, I don't know why...

But unfortunately I agree with you that these improvements can't occur simply making trades...the payroll must become in line with that of our rivals...heck, even with payroll 7-10 M in excess of ours, the Brewers apparently can't resign Sheets and/or Sabathia...

And I'm not really believing the Reds plan on doing that...if they did, resigning Dunn wouldn't be causing the organization so much angst...

RedlegJake
08-01-2008, 03:47 PM
I don't think the two situations have anything to do with each other. Griffey saw an opprotunity for what may be his last chance for a ring, and took it. Nobody can blame him for that. Dunn is entering the prime of his career and Cincinnati is the only team he has ever played for.

I think Adam is smart enough to see that the Reds have a proven GM now, a core of young players unlike anything he's seen in Cincy to date, more talent on the way, and a chance to be a huge part of a turnaround. It's just my opinion but I think he'd be willing to negotiate IF the Reds are willing to be in the neighborhood marketwise. What he and his agent think that neighborhood is may be the issue.

Ltlabner
08-01-2008, 03:47 PM
Dunn also said the Reds have not approached him with an offer. Is that not very telling?

Yes, it tells me they actually know how to negotiate, or at least better than an internet-GM.

The conversations Walt had with other GM's at the trade deadline gives him fodder in negotiations with Dunn on a LTC. It gives him ammo to make the case that the best course of action is to stay a Red (because all those other mean GM's hate you). He can use things the other GM's said talking about a trade as leverage in a LTC negotiation. Also, he can guage the market in terms of deciding a starting point for sallary discussions.

Why would they slavishly aproach Dunn in May when he can simply say, "I want to wait till the offseason". Part of negotiating is *pretending* you are willing to walk away, when in reality you aren't. If the Reds turn on a "full-court press" too early they give away leverage.

There have been plenty of signals that the Reds are casually building the case up to a full-blown LTC negotiation. BCast meeting with Dunn personally is one such signal.

They may not have said, "hey, lets talk long term deal" and sat down with the agent, but I'm thinking they've been laying the groundwork for a while now. Now that the trade deadline is past, I'm betting a deal is discussed in earnest.

Negotiations are about expectations and timing. Pressing too hard, too soon can do more harm than good.