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View Full Version : The difference between Alonso and Stubbs/Mesoraco



M2
02-04-2009, 05:01 PM
Got to thinking on this as I was perusing the BA Reds top 10 prospects list. There's a common thread running through numbers 1, 2 and 4 (Yonder Alonso, Todd Frazier and Chris Valaika), namely that no one had to teach them how to play baseball after they got drafted. That doesn't mean they were or are finished products, just that they don't represent major development projects. They aren't toolsy kids in search of skills. They don't need to be torn down to the bare metal and rebuilt.

Drew Stubbs and Devin Mesoraco are projects and I think that's been the real objection to them. People have wanted the Reds to draft surer things with first round picks (e.g. pitchers with an arsenal ready-made for MLB success). The complaint isn't so much that they'll never be any good, more that the club doesn't need to be so theoretical in the first round. Maybe Frazier (who's been in the top 10 in OPS in every league he's played in since becoming a pro) and Valaika changed some thinking in the front office, which led to the selection of Alonso.

It will be interesting to see where the Reds go with their first pick in the next draft. If it's another kid who comes in a more ready-to-play package then I'd suggest we may be witnessing a change in organizational philosophy.

Highlifeman21
02-04-2009, 08:45 PM
Interesting POV, M2

Nasty_Boy
02-04-2009, 10:22 PM
Even though Stubbs is still learning, I think that he would have been an improvement over Taveras this season in CF. But that's neither here nor there.

I'm a huge Alonso fan... I just think the guy gets it and he seems cocky/confindent enough that it seems to push him to have a strong will to succeed. Valaika and Frazier just seem to play well no matter the constant questions about their position. They probably won't be stars but I think both will be able to stay on ML rosters into their 30's.

As for Mesoraco... He's got a long ways to go, and I expected that when they drafted a HS catcher from a cold weather state in the 1st round. Hopefully this is the season that shows the skills that made him a 1st round pick.

RedsManRick
02-04-2009, 10:43 PM
I have no problem with drafting great talents and developing their skills. My concern is that the Reds aren't the Braves nor the Twins. We simply don't have any recent history of actually developing talent. I really can't think of any example where we took a guy who was talented but raw and turned him in to something quite useful.

Not that he's a finished product, but I think it's fair to say Bailey represents the latest example.

Nasty_Boy
02-04-2009, 11:43 PM
I have no problem with drafting great talents and developing their skills. My concern is that the Reds aren't the Braves nor the Twins. We simply don't have any recent history of actually developing talent. I really can't think of any example where we took a guy who was talented but raw and turned him in to something quite useful.

Not that he's a finished product, but I think it's fair to say Bailey represents the latest example.

Adam Dunn? Wasn't he pretty raw when they drafted him? Kearns was see as a more polished player, even during their time in the minor IIRC.

Nasty_Boy
02-04-2009, 11:44 PM
Although, 1 guy in the last 10 years isn't getting the job done.

M2
02-05-2009, 01:03 AM
I have no problem with drafting great talents and developing their skills. My concern is that the Reds aren't the Braves nor the Twins. We simply don't have any recent history of actually developing talent. I really can't think of any example where we took a guy who was talented but raw and turned him in to something quite useful.

Not that he's a finished product, but I think it's fair to say Bailey represents the latest example.

To me it goes beyond that. Yes, that is a problem. Yet the Reds have been picking mostly in the top half of the draft. Why draft raw anything when you can have a cooked meal?

And I'm not talking about age here. Jay Bruce was ready to play baseball when he got drafted. Adam Dunn produced from the moment he arrived. They didn't require the kind of retooling being performed on Stubbs and Mesoraco.

I'm wondering if the Reds have decided to acquire players with high picks and hold off on the projects until later.

Screwball
02-05-2009, 02:06 AM
I really can't think of any example where we took a guy who was talented but raw and turned him in to something quite useful.


Cueto?

princeton
02-05-2009, 09:47 AM
I've been posting for a decade about how the Reds can't develop, and really need to draft guys that will require as little development as possible.

that said, I think that the development system has shown signs of great improvement. the current system can at least get toolsy players up to AA successfully, which is a big improvement over the previous system where those guys looked good in Billings but not beyond. Whether they can get a guy up to the majors remains a question, but Dickerson's success had to open some eyes. had we drafted Stubbs in 2000, I think that he'd have had zero chance to be solid in the bigs. these days, he's probably got a chance.

Reds drafted Dan Wilson as 7th pick about 18 years ago, and Stubbs was fairly similar: strong defensively, with questions about whether either would hit enough. Wilson progressed quickly; Stubbs is taking a longer time. That's not a great sign, but he's already gone farther than I suspected he might so I no longer count him out.

Mesoraco might be more of a Brandon Larson story. both drafted in hopes that their offensive tools would look good at their position, but both showed quickly that they have no position.

princeton
02-05-2009, 09:51 AM
I really can't think of any example where we took a guy who was talented but raw and turned him in to something quite useful.

Votto, of course.

EdE.

it took a while, but Dickerson looks mighty useful.

lollipopcurve
02-05-2009, 10:24 AM
It will be interesting to see where the Reds go with their first pick in the next draft. If it's another kid who comes in a more ready-to-play package then I'd suggest we may be witnessing a change in organizational philosophy.

You have to put a pick in the context of the year in which it takes place. I would say that if they do go with a "safe" pick this year, then yes, there has been a shift, because this year the profile of the top 10 seems to favor a bunch of pitching staring the Reds in the face at #8. It is no coincidence that the "safe" guys you mention -- Frazier, Valaika, Alonso -- Bruce, too, though to a lesser extent, I'd say -- are all hitters. College hitters, in particular, have been shown to bring the most reliable return in the first round. As we look at this year's prospective top 10 -- and it's still a little early -- it's a little light on college bats.

Pitching is always a little riskier, given the catastrophic nature of common injuries and the propensity of HS and college coaches to overwork their best arms. I think pro clubs are adapting better to this reality and are doing more to protect their draftees well in that first year, but pitching will always be more difficult to develop than hitting, given that the pitchers generally need more retooling. I am assuming we're talking about starting pitching here. Relievers are a different breed -- and I don't think any of us expects the Reds to spend a top ten pick on a relief prospect.

That said, there are a couple of high-ceiling HS lefthanders -- Tyler Matzek and Matt Purke -- currently sitting in the top 10, and I have heard Buckley refer to lefthanders as "a real commodity." It also happens to be an organizational weakness for the Reds right now. Meanwhile, top college hitters Grant Green and Dustin Ackley are likely to be gone. Maybe the team looks at Kentrail Davis, a LH-hitting OF from Tennessee. Or the SS from Miami -- Kyle Jackson? -- who's supposed to be an excellent glove.

My guess is that if they do go with someone "safe" like Davis or Jackson, they'll be criticized for leaving some nice LH arms on the board.

M2
02-05-2009, 11:10 AM
It is no coincidence that the "safe" guys you mention -- Frazier, Valaika, Alonso -- Bruce, too, though to a lesser extent, I'd say -- are all hitters.

True, though I'd suggest Tim Lincecum would have been a safe pick too. And the upcoming draft looks deep in college arms, so it may be a pitcher the Reds should target - e.g. Mike Minor, Kendall Volz, Kyle Gibson. Another kid to keep an eye on is HS OF Donovan Tate.

Also, in 2007 the safest pick the Reds could have made at #15, in baseball terms, was probably Rick Porcello. While he was a high school arm and that's comes with built-in volatility, the club didn't have to teach him anything for him to succeed in A ball. He's worth a lot right now, offering an immediate return on investment, even if the club is nervous about where he progresses from here.

lollipopcurve
02-05-2009, 11:17 AM
True, though I'd suggest Tim Lincecum would have been a safe pick too. And the upcoming draft looks deep in college arms, so it may be a pitcher the Reds should target.

Also, in 2007 the safest pick the Reds could have made at #15, in baseball terms, was probably Rick Porcello. While he was a high school arm and that's comes with built-in volatility, the club didn't have to teach him anything for him to succeed in A ball. He's worth a lot right now, offering an immediate return on investment, even if the club is nervous about where he progresses from here.

Yeah, Porcello more than Lincecum, I'd say, going back to the time each was drafted. There are a lot of arms out there this year, and the high-ceiling guys left for the Reds are more likely to be high schoolers than college guys. Unless one considers Aaron Crow a TOR guy. I'm guessing the only high schooler who may reach Porcello status by June is Matzek. The Reds may have chosen Kershaw instead of Stubbs had the Dodgers not taken him, and this year may be their chance to get that high-ceiling lefty, whether it be Matzek or Purke. I will say this -- I don't think Chris Buckley has ever been comfortable taking a pitcher in the first round. Should be interesting.

bucksfan2
02-06-2009, 09:17 AM
Its an interesting point but you can also make this argument. Especially with pitchers if they don't go to college they have less stress and less time to pick up bad mechanics. You get a HS pitcher in your organization you don't have to worry about a college coach abusing them. You also have more say so with their mechanics. A guy like Crow is an interesting point. He was drafted in the top 10? and has some pretty scary mechanics. Had he been drafted out of HS he would have had 3-4 years to work on improving his mechanics.

What I see developing in the draft is the first rounders are expected to make a much bigger impact. Scouting and well as public knowledge has gotten to the point where 1st round picks are followed much more closely. Hitters are more refined at the college level but you have more of an idea as to what they will become. Alonso may become a very good player but I don't think anyone will argue that a guy like Neftali Soto has a higher ceiling. Alonso cost much much more but has a quicker track to the bigs. Soto is a much higher risk but also is much cheaper and you have more hands on approach to his development.

I ask you this question. Would you rather have a college coach make the decisions on how much a player plays or pitches or your minor league coaches?

princeton
02-06-2009, 09:35 AM
Would you rather have a college coach make the decisions on how much a player plays or pitches or your minor league coaches?

it's a silly question, IMO. the pitcher isn't yours until after you draft him, so "your" pitcher isn't being abused by anyone. if you don't like how a kid was coached, then don't draft him.

another thing to think about: Reds development has been so bad that by drafting collegians, they actually reap the benefit of the better development that occurs at quite a few colleges.

what's nice about drafting college pitchers is that you learn so much about a pitcher when he's 19, 20, and 21: who's going to get hurt? who's going to get distracted by other things (alcohol, women, etc)? it's a great way to avoid problems.

redsof72
02-06-2009, 09:51 AM
I have heard scouting directors talk about taking high school players because he feels they can do a better job of developing the player in their system than the player would get in college. Not sure if that's always true. It all depends on your coaches and your roving instructors. There are some ridiculously lazy, worthless coaches and rovers out there who amaze me at how they somehow stay employed while contributing almost nothing to justify their pay check. There is a huge difference from organization to organization.

I always feel like you are better off taking a college player that is three years older, simply because you have a better idea of what you are getting. But you can always shoot down that argument by pointing out that the best young players the Reds have, Bruce and Votto, were high school picks.

bucksfan2
02-06-2009, 01:55 PM
it's a silly question, IMO. the pitcher isn't yours until after you draft him, so "your" pitcher isn't being abused by anyone. if you don't like how a kid was coached, then don't draft him.

Why is it a silly question? You have a choice when it comes to drafts. You have players who are HS players and college players. The HS players you will have more say in their development while the college players will have gone thought 3 years of advanced development by a college coach.

IMO too often College coaches ride their pitcher too hard and too long. Especially when it comes to College WS time. They don't have to worry about the lasting effects of pitching a pitcher on short rest in order to win. IIRC Dallas Buck was screwed up pretty good by his college coach. College coaches jobs depend on how well they succeed during a college season. However MLB front offices are often much more cautious with younger ball players.

cincyinco
02-06-2009, 02:05 PM
I see both sides honestly..

If you're an organization like the braves, go ahead and draft the HS kid... The braves seemingly have a developmental system that is proven to produce.

The reds are not this team.. So it would seem wise to go the route princeton advocates. The reds might think the have the system in place to develope these guys, and I believe they have made strides... But they still have a ways to go, and still have only produced a cueto from the pitching side..

dougdirt
02-06-2009, 02:11 PM
The reds are not this team.. So it would seem wise to go the route princeton advocates. The reds might think the have the system in place to develope these guys, and I believe they have made strides... But they still have a ways to go, and still have only produced a cueto from the pitching side..

At the same time, they haven't produced a college pitcher either. I personally don't care whether its a HS kid or a college kid taken as a pitcher. Both have a big uphill fight to be anything of substance in the majors and flop around the same rate over the past 10 years. I just want them to take the guy they feel has the best shot.

princeton
02-06-2009, 02:27 PM
Why is it a silly question? You have a choice when it comes to drafts. You have players who are HS players and college players. The HS players you will have more say in their development while the college players will have gone thought 3 years of advanced development by a college coach.

IMO too often College coaches ride their pitcher too hard and too long. Especially when it comes to College WS time. They don't have to worry about the lasting effects of pitching a pitcher on short rest in order to win. IIRC Dallas Buck was screwed up pretty good by his college coach. College coaches jobs depend on how well they succeed during a college season. However MLB front offices are often much more cautious with younger ball players.

it's silly because you're acting like Dallas Buck was our player when he was in college, and that we needed to protect him. he wasn't ours; if we didn't like how he was treated, then let Arizona draft him.

on another note, I happen to think that HS coaches, legion coaches, travel coaches, and especially daddyball coaches abuse 17 year old arms more than college coaches abuse 20 year old arms.

bucksfan2
02-06-2009, 02:29 PM
it's silly because you're acting like Dallas Buck was our player when he was in college, and that we needed to protect him. he wasn't ours; if we didn't like how he was treated, then let Arizona draft him.

on another note, I happen to think that HS coaches, legion coaches, travel coaches, and especially daddyball coaches abuse 17 year old arms more than college coaches abuse 20 year old arms.

Im not acting like he is ours. When it comes to a draft you get a choice. You get to chose whether you want to mold and develop a player or whether you want to chose another player who has been molded and developed by someone else.

princeton
02-06-2009, 02:33 PM
I always feel like you are better off taking a college player that is three years older, simply because you have a better idea of what you are getting. But you can always shoot down that argument by pointing out that the best young players the Reds have, Bruce and Votto, were high school picks.

I've always preferred high school hitters with good strike zone judgement. Proably what I really want is maximum ceiling, and 18 year olds that know the strike zone have the best chance at becoming players capable of setting up major league pitchers

I'm not sure why such a bad development organization has had better luck with HS hitters than collegians. Seems counterintuitive, but it's been that way for a long while. Maybe we just can't successfully dissect the collegians with high ceilings from those with lower ones. At the HS level, that might be easier to see. For the love of Juan Duran, I hope so.

the highest ceiling hitters also tend to forego college

gonelong
02-06-2009, 02:47 PM
Im not acting like he is ours. When it comes to a draft you get a choice. You get to chose whether you want to mold and develop a player or whether you want to chose another player who has been molded and developed by someone else.

You listed two choices, there are three (or more).

1. Choose the HS kid and mold him your way.
2. Choose the college kid that you don't like how he has been molded.
3. Choose the college kid whom you can either live with how he has been molded or appreciate how he has been molded.

If you don't like how a kid has been handled to date and that's a significant worry for you, don't draft him. Avoid 2 and concentrate on the kids in category 1 & 3.

GL

princeton
02-06-2009, 02:51 PM
Im not acting like he is ours. When it comes to a draft you get a choice. You get to chose whether you want to mold and develop a player or whether you want to chose another player who has been molded and developed by someone else.

I've seen our mold.

better to get the older player. Maybe one of those college coaches knows what he's doing, unlike our people.

Nugget
02-06-2009, 05:20 PM
The other issue which has not been addressed in the Alonso/Valaika/Frazier v Stubbs/Merascoro issues is that the Alonso's etc of this world do one thing very well - that is hit the ball. They are given some slack for being found wanting in other areas or at least play a position where being wanting in the area is not such a big issue getting to the Show. Stubbs/Merascoro have to do a number of things well but nothing great. These guys need more time. Its not an issue of knowing how to play the game its just that what they are being asked to do is not as simple as bashing the ball.

M2
02-06-2009, 07:47 PM
on another note, I happen to think that HS coaches, legion coaches, travel coaches, and especially daddyball coaches abuse 17 year old arms more than college coaches abuse 20 year old arms.

Ain't that the truth. A lot of preps kids are walking around with arms straight out of a George Romero movie.

Kingspoint
02-08-2009, 10:38 PM
Got to thinking on this as I was perusing the BA Reds top 10 prospects list. There's a common thread running through numbers 1, 2 and 4 (Yonder Alonso, Todd Frazier and Chris Valaika), namely that no one had to teach them how to play baseball after they got drafted. That doesn't mean they were or are finished products, just that they don't represent major development projects. They aren't toolsy kids in search of skills. They don't need to be torn down to the bare metal and rebuilt.

Drew Stubbs and Devin Mesoraco are projects and I think that's been the real objection to them. People have wanted the Reds to draft surer things with first round picks (e.g. pitchers with an arsenal ready-made for MLB success). The complaint isn't so much that they'll never be any good, more that the club doesn't need to be so theoretical in the first round. Maybe Frazier (who's been in the top 10 in OPS in every league he's played in since becoming a pro) and Valaika changed some thinking in the front office, which led to the selection of Alonso.

It will be interesting to see where the Reds go with their first pick in the next draft. If it's another kid who comes in a more ready-to-play package then I'd suggest we may be witnessing a change in organizational philosophy.

Since this is an organizational question, who's making these decisions? There has been 2 owners, 4 G.M.'s in the last 7 years. Even though coaches have changed dramatically over the last 3 G.M.'s, they only carry out what they're told from the top.

John Allen stepped down as COO in November of 2007 (last winter), after taking over for Marge Schott after she was forced from the League by the other all-male owners. I think John Allen had a lot to do with a lot of screwy things regarding the draft, and his being gone for the first time in many years, in my humble opinion, had the biggest impact on the draft in 2008. I've never liked John Allen and am very glad he's gone.

dougdirt
02-09-2009, 12:07 AM
Since this is an organizational question, who's making these decisions? There has been 2 owners, 4 G.M.'s in the last 7 years. Even though coaches have changed dramatically over the last 3 G.M.'s, they only carry out what they're told from the top.

John Allen stepped down as COO in November of 2007 (last winter), after taking over for Marge Schott after she was forced from the League by the other all-male owners. I think John Allen had a lot to do with a lot of screwy things regarding the draft, and his being gone for the first time in many years, in my humble opinion, had the biggest impact on the draft in 2008. I've never liked John Allen and am very glad he's gone.

I think you are pretty offbase with John Allen and the draft, at least since Lindner stepped down. The Reds haven't made signability picks.

princeton
02-09-2009, 10:54 AM
I actually think that the Reds have lately done a decent job of getting raw hitters to flash more bat. Chris Dickerson made the majors. I figured that Stubbs/Cozart would die upon advancement, and that the holes in the swings of Soto/Francisco/Justin Reed would already destroy them. still might happen. However, in the past, Reds would have already dropped most of this type of player. Instead, all have improved, and I'm actually interested in finding out what happens next with those guys, rather than dreading it.

ironically, I suspect that Mesoraco was drafted more for what the Reds thought was an advanced bat, rather than a project bat. He just didn't actually have what they thought that he had.

M2
02-09-2009, 12:35 PM
I actually think that the Reds have lately done a decent job of getting raw hitters to flash more bat. Chris Dickerson made the majors. I figured that Stubbs/Cozart would die upon advancement, and that the holes in the swings of Soto/Francisco/Justin Reed would already destroy them. still might happen. However, in the past, Reds would have already dropped most of this type of player. Instead, all have improved, and I'm actually interested in finding out what happens next with those guys, rather than dreading it.

ironically, I suspect that Mesoraco was drafted more for what the Reds thought was an advanced bat, rather than a project bat. He just didn't actually have what they thought that he had.

Excellent points.

Kingspoint
02-10-2009, 07:27 PM
I think you are pretty offbase with John Allen and the draft, at least since Lindner stepped down. The Reds haven't made signability picks.

He's always been this question mark in the organization to me. How much influence he's had on the organization from year to year seems to vary, but it always seemed to be impactual.

bucksfan2
02-11-2009, 08:54 AM
He's always been this question mark in the organization to me. How much influence he's had on the organization from year to year seems to vary, but it always seemed to be impactual.

I don't want to turn this into a John Allen thread but he was the huge wart on the Reds organization for quite a while. Its like a disgraced CEO hanging around the company in some capacity for a couple of years. Its scary to think about his overall impact in the draft. Not just the Sowers punt but the inability to pay over slot. Draft and persuade college signees to play in the minors instead of college. It is also scary to think of his impact in Latin America. How many times did his scouts come to him with a guy but Allen bulked at the price?

IMO the Reds drafts have improved drastically since Allen was taken out of baseball operations. I don't know if that was Allen so much or Bowden being canned. But oh what could have been had Allen not considered $.5M wasteful spending instead of $.5M investing in your team.

redsmetz
02-11-2009, 10:47 AM
I don't want to turn this into a John Allen thread but he was the huge wart on the Reds organization for quite a while. Its like a disgraced CEO hanging around the company in some capacity for a couple of years. Its scary to think about his overall impact in the draft. Not just the Sowers punt but the inability to pay over slot. Draft and persuade college signees to play in the minors instead of college. It is also scary to think of his impact in Latin America. How many times did his scouts come to him with a guy but Allen bulked at the price?

IMO the Reds drafts have improved drastically since Allen was taken out of baseball operations. I don't know if that was Allen so much or Bowden being canned. But oh what could have been had Allen not considered $.5M wasteful spending instead of $.5M investing in your team.

I don't recall the organizational history on the Sowers pick, but if it had Allen's hand written on it, it doesn't make much sense. Allen is perceived as the beancounting lackey who kept a tight purse string. Why would he have the club pick a high school player who made it absolutely clear he intended to go to college? That would strike me as a type of pick which is intrinsically going to force your price up because you have to knock the player over with an overwhelming offer. That's got Jim Bowden written all over it.

Allen certainly had his faults working under two dramatically different owners, Marge Schott and Carl Lindner. Both had huge impacts on how the club was run, not to mention the goofball antics of Jim Bowden (as evidenced, IMO, in the Sowers pick). Allen, though, is made the fall guy because he worked for Schott and Lindner.

princeton
02-11-2009, 11:07 AM
I suspect that if Allen had re-classified deferred money (e.g. deferred Jr salary, and deferred bonuses to Espinosa and Sardinha), the Reds would have had enough cash for a real draft pick instead of Sowers.

instead, Allen was extremely conservative, preferring to classify future obligations as now money.

"Mister Allen was a man like Herbert Hoover again"

redsof72
02-11-2009, 01:31 PM
You might recall, the Reds had been "borrowing" from the next season's draft budget for a couple of years and to get Espinosa signed in 2000, they used the 2001 money. When '01 rolled around, they selected Sowers without any intent whatsoever of signing him. Reportedly, they never even made a serious offer. That was the way the organization was being run in those days, and it showed in scouting and player development. And the team paid dearly for its failures to operate in a professional manner.

Hard to say unless you were inside the family, but bottomline, it has to trace to ownership. The owner was the one approving the budgets and setting the guidelines for the budgets. That's not to let Bowden off the hook because he certainly deserved plenty of blame for the way he was implementing what cash he had to work with.

Cooper
02-12-2009, 10:23 AM
Allen didn't have any real power-nor did he make any real decisions --he followed to the letter what ownership wanted. It's silly to blame him for any of the bad that happened cause he was following orders. At most his biggest fault was a lack of creativity in solving problems, but compliant types rarely have a creativity gene. If they did they wouldn't be the compliant type that they are.

Allen was told what the parameters were- what the rules were...and followed them to the letter. He was there to take some of the heat and to implement ownership strategy. The minute the organiation wants someone who can solve problems and think creatively -that's the minute Allen is no longer needed.

Blaming him instead of ownership is silly -the man did what he was told and my guess is he did it within the parameters that were given. A low level asst. could have done the same thing and implemented it just as effectively.

princeton
02-12-2009, 11:15 AM
Allen didn't have any real power-nor did he make any real decisions --he followed to the letter what ownership wanted.


Allen had a lot of power, beginning from the time that he ran the team during Marge's dark days. after that, because of his former position and the team's relative success during that time period, he retained a lot more influence than your run of the mill beancounter.

I'm sure that he lost his share of fights (e.g., Jr's contract) but he won his share as well. I suspect that the stadium is almost all his.

I actually think that he had some sensible ideas at the baseball level, including several to stymie Bowden in the late '90's as well as his opposition to Jr's contract. But the stadium looms as his big albatross. Wrong stadium for this market; it hamstrings the Reds, possibly for decades.

Chip R
02-12-2009, 12:55 PM
But the stadium looms as his big albatross. Wrong stadium for this market; it hamstrings the Reds, possibly for decades.


Why do you say that?

Caveat Emperor
02-12-2009, 02:02 PM
Why do you say that?

Because he presided over the construction of a bandbox ballpark that caters to a type of game and type of player that the fans in this town don't like to watch.

Plus, the small dimensions make having premium pitching a must -- which a team like Cincinnati can't afford to go out and buy. It's almost always cheaper to buy a guy who can muscle the ball out of a big park than it is to buy a guy who can keep the ball inside a small park.

RED VAN HOT
02-15-2009, 11:12 PM
Plus, the small dimensions make having premium pitching a must -- which a team like Cincinnati can't afford to go out and buy. It's almost always cheaper to buy a guy who can muscle the ball out of a big park than it is to buy a guy who can keep the ball inside a small park.

Excellent point. A large park can be part of a winning strategy for a small market team. Oakland has had some fine pitchers, but they have appeared to be even better because of the large park and extensive foul area. It improves the marketability of your pitchers and helps in attracting middle of the rotation free agents at more reasonable prices.

Cooper
02-16-2009, 07:46 AM
The stadium and the team are a reflection of the owner. I still contend that Allen had no real power. He is a reflection of the owner's want/need to be conservative and without creativity...the OWNERS wanted a man who could operate the team and build the stadium within a narrow frame work. If that's what you want: John Allen is your man.

I think there is an assumption that because he carried out some things that he had power and influence. He did not -not any more power or influence than say Marvin Lewis. They both were the face of the franchise-they both carried out policy and operations.....neither had a speck of real power. They took their orders from very conservative owners and they were told to operate within very defined parameters.

Chip R
02-20-2009, 12:46 PM
The stadium and the team are a reflection of the owner. I still contend that Allen had no real power. He is a reflection of the owner's want/need to be conservative and without creativity...the OWNERS wanted a man who could operate the team and build the stadium within a narrow frame work. If that's what you want: John Allen is your man.

I think there is an assumption that because he carried out some things that he had power and influence. He did not -not any more power or influence than say Marvin Lewis. They both were the face of the franchise-they both carried out policy and operations.....neither had a speck of real power. They took their orders from very conservative owners and they were told to operate within very defined parameters.


You're probably right, Coop. But a lot of executives fit this bill. The difference between them and a guy like John Allen is the others will see a need and do their best to sell their boss on it even if it goes over budget. That's what JimBo did when he traded for Jr. It didn't turn out like everyone hoped but he wasn't willing to sit back and not do a deal like that because it would put the Reds over budget. Allen seemed like the type of guy who wouldn't go over budget even if it could help the team out.

Getting back to the pitching, good pitchers can win anywhere. I've said this before but I watched Aaron Harang and C.C. Sabathia throw goose eggs for over 9 innings one afternoon. There were no hurricane force winds blowing in or 25 degree temperatures to keep balls in the park.

I've seen plenty of other opposition pitchers and a few Reds pitchers throw gems in GAB. So it can be done. The organization just has to sell future pitchers on that. Challenge them. Everyone's got an ego and usually think they are better than what they really are. You tell a guy, "You think you're in the same class as Oswalt or Webb or Sabathia? Well, you shouldn't have any problems pitching here. If they can do it, so can you." Tell them they can go to San Diego and pitch in that place and be succesful but there will always be that little doubt in the back of their minds that it may not have been their ability but the park they pitch in. If you can pitch well in GAB, all doubt will be removed.