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Raisor
12-21-2008, 09:36 PM
According to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon, the Reds signed veteran lefty reliever Aaron Fultz to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invite. Fultz, 35, didn't pitch much in '08.

Highlifeman21
12-21-2008, 09:38 PM
This has to mean that the Reds don't think that highly of Mr. Bill Bray.

Topcat
12-21-2008, 09:39 PM
According to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon, the Reds signed veteran lefty reliever Aaron Fultz to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invite. Fultz, 35, didn't pitch much in '08.

Raisor is it a dumpster dive or can this guy be last years Lincoln?

reds44
12-21-2008, 09:39 PM
http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20081221&content_id=3725284&vkey=hotstove2008&fext=.jsp



CINCINNATI -- The Reds signed veteran left-handed reliever Aaron Fultz to a Minor League contract this weekend. The deal, according to an industry source, came with an invitation to big league camp at Spring Training.
Fultz did not pitch in the Majors last season after he was released by the Indians in late March. He appeared in six Minor League games combined with the Rockies' Double-A affiliate and the Tigers' Triple-A club.

With Cleveland in 2007, Fultz was 4-3 with a 2.92 ERA in 49 games. An eight-year big league veteran of the Giants, Rangers, Twins, Phillies and Indians, the 35-year-old is 25-15 with a 4.26 ERA in 463 games.

Fultz is the second free agent to be signed to a Minor League deal by the Reds in the past week. Outfielder Laynce Nix was signed on Dec. 14 and invited to big league camp

RedsManRick
12-21-2008, 09:39 PM
From his wikipedia page:



Before the 2008 season, Fultz's club option was picked up by the Indians. Yet on March 24, 2008, it was announced that Fultz would not be making the team after a poor spring. He put up an 11.88 ERA in seven games and gave 14 runs on 16 hits in 8 1/3 innings.[1] The following day, Fultz was designated for assignment and was released on March 28.

On March 29, 2008, Fultz signed a minor league contract with the Detroit Tigers, but asked to be released by the team less then 3 weeks after signing the contract because he wasn't called up to the team.

On May 6, 2008, Fultz signed a minor league contract with the Colorado Rockies but was released in June. He subsequently signed with the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League. On July 20, Fultz made a start for the Patriots against the Bridgeport Bluefish and allowed 5 runs in the 1st inning. He settled down in the following innings allowing just 1 run in the 4th but was saddled with the loss. On September 9, 2008, Fultz's contract was purchased by Uni-President 7-Eleven Lions of Taiwan's CPBL.

This is scary, per fangraphs. He lost 5 mph of a mediocre fastball from 2005-2007 while throwing his slider less and less often.

% Thrown (Avg Velocity)


Season Team FB SL CT CB CH SF KN XX PO
2005 Phillies 41.3% (89.0) 32.2% (81.9) 4.8% (75.6) 21.7% (80.1) 2.3%
2006 Phillies 40.5% (85.9) 28.8% (79.5) 7.8% (74.4) 22.9% (76.9) 4.6%
2007 Indians 52.8% (84.1) 16.4% (78.0) 8.5% (73.0) 22.3% (76.4) 2.6%


Raisor is it a dumpster dive or can this guy be last years Lincoln?

Lincoln was a guy coming back from injury. It looks like Fultz just lost it. Looks like a dumptser dive to me.

Raisor
12-21-2008, 09:41 PM
Raisor is it a dumpster dive or can this guy be last years Lincoln?

Let the winning begin!

Ron Madden
12-21-2008, 09:49 PM
According to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon, the Reds signed veteran lefty reliever Aaron Fultz to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invite. Fultz, 35, didn't pitch much in '08.

The Reds do this kind of stuff every year.

I'ts really a very bad and nasty habit.

Raisor
12-21-2008, 09:51 PM
Fultz~! is Kent Merker without the past success.

Is Jeff Shaw still not available?

Falls City Beer
12-21-2008, 09:54 PM
The Reds do this kind of stuff every year.

I'ts really a very bad and nasty habit.

Minor league deals? Every team does them. All the time.

Raisor
12-21-2008, 09:56 PM
Minor league deals? Every team does them. All the time.

Reds minor league deals tend to turn into major league disasters.

Falls City Beer
12-21-2008, 09:59 PM
Reds minor league deals tend to turn into major league disasters.

Yeah, but remember, this pitching staff is *stacked!*

But seriously, he'll have to be excellent to nail down a spot. Most of the spots are already accounted for, for better or worse. Though I wouldn't be surprised at all if Fultz puts up better numbers next season than Bray.

Ron Madden
12-21-2008, 10:02 PM
Minor league deals? Every team does them. All the time.


Yeh, every team signs crap as minor league filler.

The problem I have is the crap the Reds sign always finds a way to float into the Reds bullpen.


;)

M2
12-21-2008, 10:07 PM
I hope he makes the team just so we can use the phrase Fultz Metal Jacket.

membengal
12-21-2008, 10:08 PM
This has to mean that the Reds don't think that highly of Mr. Bill Bray.

Man, I sure don't read it that way at all, highlife.

Who is the second left-hander in the pen behind Bray? I would surmise that Fulz may be a flyer to give them another option at the tail end of the staff. At most.

pahster
12-21-2008, 10:09 PM
Who is the second left-hander in the pen behind Bray?

Arthur Rhodes.

Highlifeman21
12-21-2008, 10:14 PM
Man, I sure don't read it that way at all, highlife.

Who is the second left-hander in the pen behind Bray? I would surmise that Fulz may be a flyer to give them another option at the tail end of the staff. At most.

...like pahster said, Arthur Rhodes.

TTBOMK, Rhodes and Bray are the only Reds making guaranteed MLB money for 2009.

membengal
12-21-2008, 10:17 PM
Yeesh, forgot all about Rhodes.

So, yeah, Rhodes and Bray are your lefties. Fulz looks like spring training flier to give them a potential third option. At best.

Highlifeman21
12-21-2008, 10:18 PM
Yeesh, forgot all about Rhodes.

So, yeah, Rhodes and Bray are your lefties. Fulz looks like spring training flier to give them a potential third option. At best.

I really hope Herrera doesn't make the team.

membengal
12-21-2008, 10:20 PM
See, I like Herrera, and think he would a be a really nice option at the back of the staff.

westofyou
12-21-2008, 10:23 PM
This has to mean that the Reds don't think that highly of Mr. Bill Bray.

Not really, this team has been collecting Left pen guys for 4 seasons now, expect it to neutralize the LH power the park gives up for the rest of your life.

HokieRed
12-21-2008, 10:25 PM
Bray had a 1.57 WHIP last year; he had a .779 OPS against. Both numbers are pretty much in line with what he's done in his other years as well. I think it's a mistake to count on him too seriously. I'm hopeful about him, but I'd certainly call Arthur Rhodes the first lefty out of the pen and I wouldn't be at all surprised if Bray blows up significantly this year. Fultz looks like a no-risk, all upside deal to me.

Kc61
12-21-2008, 10:40 PM
Maybe Bray is in the Jermaine Dye trade.

Highlifeman21
12-21-2008, 10:51 PM
Not really, this team has been collecting Left pen guys for 4 seasons now, expect it to neutralize the LH power the park gives up for the rest of your life.

They've been collecting crappy LHP guys for the pen the last few years.

I'm waiting for them to pick up a solid LHP guy for the pen anyday now.

OnBaseMachine
12-21-2008, 11:09 PM
This has to mean that the Reds don't think that highly of Mr. Bill Bray.

I think you are reading WAY too much into a minor league signing.

OnBaseMachine
12-21-2008, 11:11 PM
I'm waiting for them to pick up a solid LHP guy for the pen anyday now.

Jeremy Affeldt in 2008? Arthur Rhodes?

Caveat Emperor
12-21-2008, 11:20 PM
Meh, I find it hard to get worked up over a guy that's on a minor league deal. If he pitches great, it's a great sign. If he doesn't, all he wasted was a few Grapefruit League innings.

Jay Bruce
12-21-2008, 11:21 PM
Bray had a 1.57 WHIP last year; he had a .779 OPS against. Both numbers are pretty much in line with what he's done in his other years as well. I think it's a mistake to count on him too seriously. I'm hopeful about him, but I'd certainly call Arthur Rhodes the first lefty out of the pen and I wouldn't be at all surprised if Bray blows up significantly this year.

Bill Bray is sometimes under appreciated. His 3.77 xFIP last season was the second lowest among Reds relievers, behind only Jeremy Affeldt. While his 4.6 BB/9 is a admittedly high, his 10.34 K/9 more than makes up for it. In addition, his neutral groundball/flyball tendencies make him a fine fit for GABP. Right now, I would feel comfortable relying on Bray to be our 7th inning setup man, rather than condemning him to the roster bubble.

Tom Servo
12-22-2008, 12:15 AM
Reds minor league deals tend to turn into major league disasters.
Sometimes, but not usually with pitchers at the end of their rope. Remembr Brian Meadows, Kerry Lightenberg, Dustin Hermanson, Scott Sauerbeck? I'm not too concerned about this at all.

lollipopcurve
12-22-2008, 07:15 AM
Though I wouldn't be surprised at all if Fultz puts up better numbers next season than Bray.

I would.

marcshoe
12-22-2008, 07:21 AM
I was wondering why the Indians cut Fultz after a good '07, and I found this, from last spring:


WINTER HAVEN, Fla. -- Aaron Fultz has pitched himself off the Indians' roster.
The Indians informed Fultz on Monday morning that he will not be a member of their club this year, despite the fact that they exercised his $1.5 million option for 2008. Craig Breslow, another left-handed reliever plucked off outright waivers by the Indians on Sunday, will get the first crack at taking his spot in the bullpen.

Fultz, 34, had a rough spring, putting up an 11.88 ERA in seven Grapefruit League outings. He gave up 14 runs, 11 earned, on 16 hits with three walks and seven strikeouts in 8 1/3 innings. He was also dinged for four runs in two innings of a Minor League intrasquad game against Double-A Akron last week.

General manager Mark Shapiro said the Indians don't ordinarily make major decisions off Spring Training performance. But Fultz's outings and the relatively low value of his contract made Shapiro comfortable with this move.

"It's never a decision you want to take lightly in this market," Shapiro said, "but the value of his option certainly factored into the decision."

The Indians picked up Fultz's option after he went 4-3 with a 2.92 ERA in 49 appearances last season. He missed about five weeks midseason with a strained rib cage muscle. He allowed 14 of 45 inherited runners (31 percent) to score.

"He was a guy who, prior to the injury, pitched effectively for us," Shapiro said. "He never really got back to that form after [the injury]. I'm sure he's a guy who can still help someone in the big leagues, but our desire was to take that spot in the bullpen and use that spot as an area where we try to get better."

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080324&content_id=2454682&vkey=spt2008news&fext=.jsp&c_id=cle

redsmetz
12-22-2008, 08:05 AM
I was wondering why the Indians cut Fultz after a good '07, and I found this, from last spring

Tixe, thanks for that find. It sounds like this is a decent, no risk signing. I suspect (but don't recall) that there was this sort of angsts last winter when the Reds gave a minor league deal to Lincoln. You look under every stone, IMO. And he might not be a bad arm to have down in Louisville in case one is needed.

REDREAD
12-22-2008, 10:03 AM
Minor league deals? Every team does them. All the time.

Exactly. I don't have a problem with it at all. Consider it like the past Ricky Stone signings. The guy will be put in the minors in the event we have several pitching injuries.

If Fultz got a guaranteed deal, I could see the angst. But every team brings a few guys like this in every spring.

ochre
12-22-2008, 11:38 AM
Is Jeff Shaw still not available?
I hear he'll sign for a home town discount.

edabbs44
12-22-2008, 01:19 PM
Meh, I find it hard to get worked up over a guy that's on a minor league deal. If he pitches great, it's a great sign. If he doesn't, all he wasted was a few Grapefruit League innings.

The problem is that these types of guys are able to put up great ST numbers, get the call, and then flop when they get to the games that count.

Think Victor Santos.

Caveat Emperor
12-22-2008, 02:18 PM
The problem is that these types of guys are able to put up great ST numbers, get the call, and then flop when they get to the games that count.

Think Victor Santos.

Or they have a pretty decent season.

Think Mike Lincoln.

Door swings both ways on this one. I trust Jocketty and his staff will make the proper evaluations. This is his first spring training in charge, so I'll give him the benefit of the doubt when it comes to sifting between diamonds in the rough and dung in the pile.

*BaseClogger*
12-22-2008, 06:58 PM
The problem is that these types of guys are able to put up great ST numbers, get the call, and then flop when they get to the games that count.

Think Victor Santos.

In this situation, I would be much more concerned about his spring scouting report (i.e. fastball mph) than any numbers he might produce...

RedsManRick
12-22-2008, 08:25 PM
Or they have a pretty decent season.

Think Mike Lincoln.

Door swings both ways on this one. I trust Jocketty and his staff will make the proper evaluations. This is his first spring training in charge, so I'll give him the benefit of the doubt when it comes to sifting between diamonds in the rough and dung in the pile.

Unfortunately you have to go 15-20 innings before you can tell which is which -- by then they can already have cost you a game or two. My rule of thumb is that if a guy has to do something in spring training to make the team, chances are he doesn't belong on the team.

Mario-Rijo
12-22-2008, 09:36 PM
Unfortunately you have to go 15-20 innings before you can tell which is which -- by then they can already have cost you a game or two. My rule of thumb is that if a guy has to do something in spring training to make the team, chances are he doesn't belong on the team.

Maybe the thing he has to prove in S/T is that he has his velocity back. The loss of which could have come because of the injury he had. If he proves that maybe he gets an extended look. If the velocity's not there the production isn't likely to be there either.

Caveat Emperor
12-23-2008, 12:12 AM
My rule of thumb is that if a guy has to do something in spring training to make the team, chances are he doesn't belong on the team.

So you'd admit that following your rule of thumb would've never brought the Josh Hamilton story to Cincinnati? ;)

I agree, in theory, it's always best to have your active roster set well before you get to spring training. However, having said that, I don't see anything wrong with giving out a few golden tickets on the cheap and seeing if you can't catch lightening in a bottle every so often. Especially when budget is a concern, which it always will be in Cincinnati.

RedsManRick
12-23-2008, 12:18 AM
So you'd admit that following your rule of thumb would've never brought the Josh Hamilton story to Cincinnati? ;)

I agree, in theory, it's always best to have your active roster set well before you get to spring training. However, having said that, I don't see anything wrong with giving out a few golden tickets on the cheap and seeing if you can't catch lightening in a bottle every so often. Especially when budget is a concern, which it always will be in Cincinnati.

I'm fine about using spring training as an extended scouting opportunity. But when a guy shows up doing what he's always done and gets different results due to luck/variance, and gets rewarded for it with a roster spot, that's when I have a problem.

If Fultz shows up throwing 90 again, sure. But if Fultz was throwing 90 again, he would've been putting on shows for scouts and angling for a major league contract somewhere.

It's the slop throwing reliever who puts up a 0.74 ERA or the slap hitting middle IF who hits .417 with 3 HR and finds a way on the roster ahead of a deserving young guy that bugs me. Sure, keep the jar open in case some lightning jumps in. Just don't get confused if it's only a lightning bug.