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Ltlabner
05-07-2009, 03:43 PM
Given the heated off-season debate over Willy T's potential contributions I thought it interesting to look at his first month (plus 1 week) of performance in a Redlegs uni.



NAME PA EqA OBP SLG OUTR VORP RAR RAP
Willy Taveras 108 .243 .330 .330 0.64815 0.3 1.4 -3.3

His EqA, a measure of total offensive production, (which includes base-running) is well below average (.260). His OBP is hovering at the tolerable versus miserable point. His out rate isn't completely horrible but ultimately, he's not giving you much more than replacement level run production. While he can't help what his teammates do/don't do, as a lead-off "table setter" that's the guy who I want to see crossing home plate a bunch (because he's actually on base). And with Votto's hot start to the year I don't think you can lay all of the blame for the replacement level run production at Willy's teammate's feet.

To his credit, versus right handers, he's not too shabby by the traditional metrics: .288BA, .342OBP and .364SLG. If he could maintain that level of production across the board all season he's done his job. However, against left hander's he's utterly useless at .182BA, .296OBP and .227SLG. Fortunately, he's facing righties far more often than southpaws. (66AB v 22). When a lefty is on the mound, The Dusty really ought to bat him 8th or 9th (ignoring that there is a lot of competition for that spot in the lineup).

So with his bat I would judge him to be merely adequate and barely keeping his head above water. A couple of good games, this early in the season, could turn these numbers around (then again, so could a cold streak). He's not the problem on the team, but he's not actually helping us much either.

By way of comparison, Michael Bourn has spent most of his time leading off, or in the 2-hole. Here's what he's given Houston.


NAME PA EqA OBP SLG OUTR VORP RAR RAP
Michael Bourn 110 .288 .364 .443 0.62727 6.8 6.7 2.2

I'm not pimping Bourn as some great player, and he could fall off a cliff also, but those are the kinds of numbers that a leadoff guy should be giving you, IMO.

So then I looked at Willy's vaunted speed to see how much havoc he was creating on the base-paths. As was mentioned in the SmallBall thread, not much.


SB CS SB% PICKOFF
6 1 85.7% 1

He's currently 7th in the league in stolen bases (Bourn has 8, the league leader 9). The difference isn't huge, a couple of good games and Willy's in the lead. However, coming in 7th out of 16 teams doesn't strike me as someone "creating havoc" at some rate that would impact his ability to acquire additional bases after he avoided an out at the plate.
--------------------------------------------------------------------

So the numbers support what several people have posted in various threads. Willy T is not the problem on the team, and he's not been a flaming disaster thus far. However, he's not really adding much to the team either. He's neither been havoc on the basepaths or bunting machine. This early in the season, his numbers could spike given a hot or cold streak.

So basically the verdict is still out and neither camp, pro or anti Willy has been proven right. Much more importantly, he's not hurting the Reds with his bat/out rate. Now, if he could figure out how to actually help the team.....

TRF
05-07-2009, 04:00 PM
So basically the verdict is still out and neither camp, pro or anti Willy has been proven right. Much more importantly, he's not hurting the Reds with his bat/out rate. Now, if he could figure out how to actually help the team.....

I disagree with part of this. He moved to a from a hitters haven in Denver to a different kind of hitters haven in Cincinnati. And he's SLG worse. His complete lack of power needs to be offset with a very high OBP, .380+ and massive amounts of SB's

He's not doing either so far.

wheels
05-07-2009, 04:19 PM
He's on the fast track to being Patterson - lite.

jojo
05-07-2009, 04:28 PM
I disagree with part of this. He moved to a from a hitters haven in Denver to a different kind of hitters haven in Cincinnati. And he's SLG worse. His complete lack of power needs to be offset with a very high OBP, .380+ and massive amounts of SB's

He's not doing either so far.

He's going to be a below average major league bat-I thinks that's a pretty likely outcome. The question is does his defense and speed-related activities make up for it when everything is added up at the end of the day.

His upside is "yes they do" and as a result he looks something like an average major leaguer.

Taveras is meh to bleh.

TheNext44
05-07-2009, 04:47 PM
He's going to be a below average major league bat-I thinks that's a pretty likely outcome. The question is does his defense and speed-related activities make up for it when everything is added up at the end of the day.

His upside is "yes they do" and as a result he looks something like an average major leaguer.

Taveras is meh to bleh.

That assessment and Ltlabner's solid summery is far better than what I expected out of him. I really saw him as a huge liability, not as horrific as Patterson and his .238 OBP, but definitely as someone who could be even near major league average on offense. And in the leadoff spot, a huge drag on the offense.

I am happily surprised and just hope he can stay as average as he has been, because I really don't think he can be much better than that, but definitely much worse.

TRF
05-07-2009, 04:58 PM
That assessment and Ltlabner's solid summery is far better than what I expected out of him. I really saw him as a huge liability, not as horrific as Patterson and his .238 OBP, but definitely as someone who could be even near major league average on offense. And in the leadoff spot, a huge drag on the offense.

I am happily surprised and just hope he can stay as average as he has been, because I really don't think he can be much better than that, but definitely much worse.

The problem with WT at this point is it's only 25 games. 5 of his 8 BB's came in his first 7 games. For all the talk about raising his OBP, he's right at his career norm.

And I'm sorry, but that won't do. The Reds need him to score 100+ runs this year. ESPN projects him to score 107, but they also project him at 51 BB's, something he's never even sniffed before.

1 week into the season, WT had me in shock.

2 weeks in it wore off.

jojo
05-07-2009, 05:06 PM
That assessment and Ltlabner's solid summery is far better than what I expected out of him. I really saw him as a huge liability, not as horrific as Patterson and his .238 OBP, but definitely as someone who could be even near major league average on offense. And in the leadoff spot, a huge drag on the offense.

I am happily surprised and just hope he can stay as average as he has been, because I really don't think he can be much better than that, but definitely much worse.

As a lead off hitter, he'll be given too many outs to burn for my tastes. He's basically been the offensive player he's been projected to be thus far. Concerning his defense being good enough to cover the sins of his wood, that remains to be seen. He's got to be something like a +10 defender.

Based upon April-May so far, I'd say he's likely to be at least a neutral defender barring injury. Really, his ceiling is that of a 2 win player (i.e. an average major leaguer WAR-wise).

Like Ltlabner said, we'll have to see.

Ltlabner
05-07-2009, 05:08 PM
The problem with WT at this point is it's only 25 games. 5 of his 8 BB's came in his first 7 games.

For me, the walk rate is the key to his success (not just being someone who isn't hurting the team).

The bunting thing is a neat but is a one trick pony. You can't bunt and leg it out every AB. He certainly can't count on his raw power to consistently knock the ball around. He has to be patient and if he doesn't get a good pitch take the walk.

The walk rate started out great. He's drawn one walk in the last 7 games (29 AB's). That's not good. Joey Votto has drawn 9 for comparison. If he abandons the patient approach at he plate (either on his own or under pressure to be more aggressive) he's going to quickly go from simply doing nothing to actively hurting the team.

M2
05-07-2009, 05:10 PM
Taveras is 21 points below a park-adjusted league average for OB and 99 points below a park-adjusted league for SLG. His RARP (runs above replacement player) is 0.3.

Essentially he's a bench player with a starting job. He needs to keep the OB up near the league average in order to justify a regular gig. Judy bats who can run and field are a dime a dozen.

As has been stated here and in other threads, he's not the Reds' biggest problem, but replacing him might at some point be the easiest upgrade.

RichRed
05-07-2009, 05:18 PM
Yep, this isn't the 70s and this lineup isn't strong enough to compensate for an Omar Moreno.

nate
05-07-2009, 05:19 PM
For me, the walk rate is the key to his success (not just being someone who isn't hurting the team).

The bunting thing is a neat but is a one trick pony. You can't bunt and leg it out every AB. He certainly can't count on his raw power to consistently knock the ball around. He has to be patient and if he doesn't get a good pitch take the walk.

The walk rate started out great. He's drawn one walk in the last 7 games (29 AB's). That's not good. Joey Votto has drawn 9 for comparison. If he abandons the patient approach at he plate (either on his own or under pressure to be more aggressive) he's going to quickly go from simply doing nothing to actively hurting the team.

I think it's a double-edged sword for Willy because he has to be hitting in order for pitchers to try and dink him outside. If he's not hitting in the first place, they're just gonna go right after him to get him out.

He did start out gangbusters with the walks though.

jojo
05-07-2009, 05:44 PM
I don't think it's really a matter of Willy changing his approach rather than he just benefited from some early season happy randomness....


I think it's pretty clear that Willy can't sustain his current walk rate because pitchers simply won't let him.

For his career he's taken a little under 53% of all pitches he's seen. This season he's taking 65% of them.

We're probably looking at a small sample size effect where he's just had a run of PAs against guys who weren't throwing strikes to him for whatever reason (remember there are also several others in the lineup with walk rates that are outliers compared to their careers). Even if this was a new approach on Willy's part, it won't take long for pitchers to absolutely pound his strike zone into submission forcing him to swing (or bunt).

TheNext44
05-07-2009, 06:23 PM
Taveras is 21 points below a park-adjusted league average for OB and 99 points below a park-adjusted league for SLG. His RARP (runs above replacement player) is 0.3.

Essentially he's a bench player with a starting job. He needs to keep the OB up near the league average in order to justify a regular gig. Judy bats who can run and field are a dime a dozen.

As has been stated here and in other threads, he's not the Reds' biggest problem, but replacing him might at some point be the easiest upgrade.

If he were to steal at the same rate he has in his career, and plays the same defense he is now, I would guess he would be right around league average for CF, all factors considered.

And it really is not fair to use park adjusted numbers for him, since he does not benefit from the homer friendly GABP in any way.

And as I stated before, I, along with many others, predicted much worse for him this season, so I would be happy, now that he is a sunk cost, with him keeping up this blah-average production. I seriously doubt he can do much better.

We all know that unless he hit the lows of Patterson, Dusty is going to keep him in CF and leading off for the whole season, so we might as well try to make the best of it.

My only hope is that Gomes comes up, knocks the cover off the ball, and Dusty decides to platoon Dickerson and Taveras instead. But I know that has as much chance of happening as Janish coming into pitch and getting two K's. ;)

Mario-Rijo
05-07-2009, 06:37 PM
I don't think it's really a matter of Willy changing his approach rather than he just benefited from some early season happy randomness....

It is definitely his approach that has waned. Earlier in the season he was taking borderline strikes early in the count, now he's swinging at those same pitches. And BP's approach has also faltered, Bruce has been back and forth but mostly back.

Raisor
05-07-2009, 07:30 PM
Here's NL average for leadoff hitters so far

260 .326 .377 .703

and NL CFers

.264 .345 .431 .776

WMR
05-07-2009, 07:46 PM
They are (He is) who we thought they (he) were (is). Except with no steals.

GAC
05-07-2009, 07:46 PM
It just means there is gonna be a lot of Votto and Bruce solo Hrs this season. ;)

jojo
05-07-2009, 08:03 PM
It is definitely his approach that has waned. Earlier in the season he was taking borderline strikes early in the count, now he's swinging at those same pitches. And BP's approach has also faltered, Bruce has been back and forth but mostly back.

Guys typically don't reinvent themselves at age 26 and 27 concerning something as significant as approach. I'm very skeptical that they can turn it on and off.

M2
05-07-2009, 08:39 PM
And it really is not fair to use park adjusted numbers for him, since he does not benefit from the homer friendly GABP in any way.

Looks like it's now fair to park adjust Taveras.

Ltlabner
05-07-2009, 08:41 PM
I will be working on an addendum to my original post. I failed to explore the power aspects of Willy's game. I will be sharing my research on our newest power hitter later this evening after the shock and awe subsides.

Falls City Beer
05-07-2009, 08:41 PM
Looks like it's now fair to park adjust Taveras.

He's going to hit more than one or two in the easiest homer park in baseball.

Mario-Rijo
05-07-2009, 09:01 PM
Guys typically don't reinvent themselves at age 26 and 27 concerning something as significant as approach. I'm very skeptical that they can turn it on and off.

Say what? That's an odd notion. Perhaps we have different views of what approach encompasses.

jojo
05-07-2009, 09:33 PM
Say what? That's an odd notion. Perhaps we have different views of what approach encompasses.

A guy with historically poor plate discipline doesn't suddenly become Keith Hernandez at age 27.

A contact deficient guy doesn't suddenly become Keppinger.

Basically at 27, you're what ya are with perhaps room for some minor tweaks. I'm sure there are historic exceptions but exceptions shouldn't be planned for...

mth123
05-07-2009, 10:00 PM
I'm actually pleasantly surprised.

That isn't to say I like the Taveras signing or that this type of player is my cup of tea. Its just that so far, he isn't nearly as bad as I expected. M2 had it right. He's a bench player with a starting job and his type is a dime a dozen. He's Darnell McDonald or Norris Hopper who gets over-valued in the fantasy baseball era where his stolen bases seem to count for more than they really do when it comes to winning actual baseball games.

I will say this - So far this season, the Reds have had worse problems.

Mario-Rijo
05-07-2009, 10:22 PM
A guy with historically poor plate discipline doesn't suddenly become Keith Hernandez at age 27.

A contact deficient guy doesn't suddenly become Keppinger.

Basically at 27, you're what ya are with perhaps room for some minor tweaks. I'm sure there are historic exceptions but exceptions shouldn't be planned for...

Well I guess I get what you are saying but frankly I still don't believe that completely. Certainly overall that seems to be true but I think that just the simple fact that a player can show it at all proves he is capable of changing, but something has to be said to him or done to make him decide to change it. They may not take a whole lot more walks as a result but being more selective they improve their entire game all around marginally or maybe a little better. Or yes they improve selectivity as they get older it just doesn't show up as a high increase in BB's alone it's spread to improve OPS overall.

However the comment I made was that his approach did change, he was being patient, taking BB's and being more selective overall. And that has changed since early in the season.

TRF
05-07-2009, 10:25 PM
I'm actually pleasantly surprised.

That isn't to say I like the Taveras signing or that this type of player is my cup of tea. Its just that so far, he isn't nearly as bad as I expected. M2 had it right. He's a bench player with a starting job and his type is a dime a dozen. He's Darnell McDonald or Norris Hopper who gets over-valued in the fantasy baseball era where his stolen bases seem to count for more than they really do when it comes to winning actual baseball games.

I will say this - So far this season, the Reds have had worse problems.

Surprised by what? he is exactly what the back of his baseball card says.

And really, that isn't something the Reds should have coveted.

Nice game tonight though.

mth123
05-07-2009, 10:40 PM
Surprised by what? he is exactly what the back of his baseball card says.

And really, that isn't something the Reds should have coveted.

Nice game tonight though.

I expected him to be worse. .300 OBP tops. His OBP isn't great, but he's been on base every game. I envisioned stretches where he'd go an entire week without getting on. I still think we'll see that.

TheNext44
05-07-2009, 10:44 PM
Surprised by what? he is exactly what the back of his baseball card says.

And really, that isn't something the Reds should have coveted.

Nice game tonight though.

Can't speak for anyone else, but I thought that there was no way he could come close to his career numbers. I thought, and still think that two years ago was an anomaly, and last year was closer to representing his talent level.

Guys with SLG as low as his get attacked by the pitcher. Why nibble when the worst that could happen is a single or maybe a speed driven double? This leads to few walks, and a low OBP.

Based on his numbers, he looked like a punch and judy hitter, but even before tonight's homer, he has shown me that he hits the ball with authority. He simply is not big or strong enough to get many homers, but he still hits the ball hard enough that pitchers need to be careful with him, which should drive up his OBP higher than I expected.

His size, combined with an approach to pound the ball into the ground will still leave him with a very low SLG, however.

Don't get me wrong, I wish he was not the CF, leadoff hitter for this team. Completely agree that he isn't something that the Reds should have coveted. I am just surprisingly impressed with what I have seen, now that he is here.

TRF
05-08-2009, 10:07 AM
Can't speak for anyone else, but I thought that there was no way he could come close to his career numbers. I thought, and still think that two years ago was an anomaly, and last year was closer to representing his talent level.

Guys with SLG as low as his get attacked by the pitcher. Why nibble when the worst that could happen is a single or maybe a speed driven double? This leads to few walks, and a low OBP.

Based on his numbers, he looked like a punch and judy hitter, but even before tonight's homer, he has shown me that he hits the ball with authority. He simply is not big or strong enough to get many homers, but he still hits the ball hard enough that pitchers need to be careful with him, which should drive up his OBP higher than I expected.

His size, combined with an approach to pound the ball into the ground will still leave him with a very low SLG, however.

Don't get me wrong, I wish he was not the CF, leadoff hitter for this team. Completely agree that he isn't something that the Reds should have coveted. I am just surprisingly impressed with what I have seen, now that he is here.

Nobody has to be careful with or fearful of a guy with a .358 SLG.

bucksfan2
05-08-2009, 10:49 AM
Nobody has to be careful with or fearful of a guy with a .358 SLG.

He is a leadoff hitter. SLG is one of the last things I would look at in order to determine his value.

BRM
05-08-2009, 11:01 AM
He is a leadoff hitter. SLG is one of the last things I would look at in order to determine his value.

That wasn't his point at all.

Ltlabner
05-08-2009, 11:04 AM
He is a leadoff hitter. SLG is one of the last things I would look at in order to determine his value.

The point, that Nate originally brought up, is that with such a low slugging percentage pitchers aren't going to nibble around the plate (which tends to lead to more walks with a patient hitter). They are going to attack him and throw strikes.

bucksfan2
05-08-2009, 11:08 AM
The point, that Nate originally brought up, is that with such a low slugging percentage pitchers aren't going to nibble around the plate (which tends to lead to more walks with a patient hitter). They are going to attack him and throw strikes.

But if they attack him that means he will get more pitches to hit. So far Taveras has been pretty paitent at the plate not swinging at many bad pitches. The key for him is how often he gets on base. Even if pitchers pound the strikezone because he doesn't have HR power, he still will see more good pitches to hit. If Taveras gets on base he has the ability to turn a bunt single into a triple. To be quite honest I don't know why he hasn't run much so far this year but I expect to see more of it as the season progresses.

M2
05-08-2009, 11:19 AM
But if they attack him that means he will get more pitches to hit.

That would be great if he were a .320 hitter, but he's not. Pitchers are not playing into his strength by doing this.

You say what you care about with Taveras is his OB, yet pitchers pounding him with the hard stuff is what makes his OB go down.

jojo
05-08-2009, 11:19 AM
But if they attack him that means he will get more pitches to hit. So far Taveras has been pretty paitent at the plate not swinging at many bad pitches. The key for him is how often he gets on base. Even if pitchers pound the strikezone because he doesn't have HR power, he still will see more good pitches to hit. If Taveras gets on base he has the ability to turn a bunt single into a triple. To be quite honest I don't know why he hasn't run much so far this year but I expect to see more of it as the season progresses.

Looking at it from a pitcher's point of view, the ideal hitter is another pitcher. The second most ideal hitter is a power-deficient guy whose OBP is singles driven. Unless the guy is Ichiro (i.e. a freak who still manages an above average wOBA), such a hitter generally is a great risk from a making contact standpoint.

I think that's the context for what several have alluded to in this thread concerning WT's issues with getting on base and hitting for power.

jojo
05-08-2009, 11:20 AM
That would be great if he were a .320 hitter, but he's not.

You say what you care about with Taveras is his OB, yet pitchers pounding him with the hard stuff is what makes his OB go down.

Exactly.

westofyou
05-08-2009, 11:23 AM
That would be great if he were a .320 hitter, but he's not. Pitchers are not playing into his strength by doing this.

You say what you care about with Taveras is his OB, yet pitchers pounding him with the hard stuff is what makes his OB go down.

Best RC/27 for a FT player with a slugging percentage below .360 in the past 20 years is Chuck Knoblauch (1992)with a tad over a run better than the league average. he hit .297 and had a .384 ob% But he could take a walk.

RichRed
05-08-2009, 12:35 PM
To be quite honest I don't know why he hasn't run much so far this year but I expect to see more of it as the season progresses.

I'm not sure I do. In the three seasons before '08, he attempted 45, 42 and 42 steals (granted he only played 97 games in '07). So far this season, he's on pace for 43 attempts, which is right in line with those numbers.

Now maybe we'll get the '08 version of Taveras when he ran like his hair was on fire (75 attempts) - and I hope we do - but he's really going to have to take it up a notch for that to happen.

TheNext44
05-08-2009, 01:41 PM
Nobody has to be careful with or fearful of a guy with a .358 SLG.

I agree, generally. In fact I had a post in the SunDeck stating that Taveras' biggest problem is not his low OBP, but his low SLG, for the very reason you just stated.

However...

My point in this last post was that I was surprised at how hard Taveras hits the ball. He does not swing like a punch and judy hitter, he really crushes the ball when he makes solid contact. The reason his SLG is so low is because of his approach, which is to pound the ball into the ground and his size.

I don't think that pitchers look at a hitter's SLG when they are on the mound. Sure, the pre-game meeting points this out, but when a pitcher faces Taveras, and sees his swing, they probably are more fearful of him than his SLG would dictate, and are more likely to be careful with him than they would be with most guys with his SLG.

That's all I'm saying.

RichRed
05-08-2009, 01:55 PM
Well, except that Taveras has a career LD% of 14% and only 12% this year. By comparison, Votto is at 26%, Bruce is at 21% and Edwin is at 21% (all career numbers).

If I'm a pitcher, I'm going right after Willy.

TheNext44
05-08-2009, 02:17 PM
Well, except that Taveras has a career LD% of 14% and only 12% this year. By comparison, Votto is at 26%, Bruce is at 21% and Edwin is at 21% (all career numbers).

If I'm a pitcher, I'm going right after Willy.

LD% is very subjective. It does not include hard hit grounders, which is Taveras' style. It should be low for him, you want him hitting grounders with his speed. And we have seen this year, that when he can get one of those grounders past the infield, they can get to wall real fast. You can crush the ball, and still have a low LD rate.

Anyway, my point is that Taveras appears to hit the ball harder than his numbers indicate. I am not saying that he has "hidden" power, just that pitchers, while they should go right at him, might be a bit fearful based on how hard he swings. Not a very compelling argument I know.

kpresidente
05-08-2009, 02:29 PM
Has he done anything Norris Hopper couldn't have done?

jojo
05-08-2009, 02:31 PM
One would expect a lightning-fast GB hitter to have a sustainably higher than average BABIP. For all of Taveras' lightning fast, hard-hittingness, his BABIP, isn't that impressively higher than average.

I'm not really buying the "he doesn't hit for power but pitchers fear his ability to hit the ball hard" argument.

He's a singles hitter. He may hit grounders harder than normal but it doesn't seem to translate.

RichRed
05-08-2009, 02:39 PM
One would expect a lightning-fast GB hitter to have a sustainably higher than average BABIP. For all of Taveras' lightning fast, hard-hittingness, his BABIP, isn't that impressively higher than average.

I'm not really buying the "he doesn't hit for power but pitchers fear his ability to hit the ball hard" argument.

He's a singles hitter. He may hit grounders harder than normal but it doesn't seem to translate.

I agree. What I might buy is the "pitchers fear his ability to drive them batty on the basepaths" argument...but only if he starts running like he did last year.

Chip R
05-08-2009, 02:40 PM
Has he done anything Norris Hopper couldn't have done?


Play defense better.

TheNext44
05-08-2009, 02:45 PM
Play defense better.

Faster, and works the count better too.

Still not a huge upgrade over Hopper overall.

M2 put it best when he said that players like Taveras are very common and easy to acquire.

WMR
05-08-2009, 03:28 PM
Placing Dickerson in CF and finding a legitimate bat to play LF would have made this such a better roster. Taveras was just a horrible target for acquisition.

Raisor
05-08-2009, 04:17 PM
He is a leadoff hitter. SLG is one of the last things I would look at in order to determine his value.

Problem is that other teams seem to look for SLG from their leadoff hitter. At least more then the Reds do, which is a problem since the Reds have little power anyway.

In 08 the average NL leadoff hitter had a AVG/OBP/SLG/OPS line of .274 .342 .424 .766

Now, this year it's down so far (.388 SLG), but from the previous five seasons the NL avg for leadoff hitters has been .414.

Kc61
05-08-2009, 10:51 PM
Placing Dickerson in CF and finding a legitimate bat to play LF would have made this such a better roster. Taveras was just a horrible target for acquisition.



Dickerson has fanned 22 times in 62 official at bats. That's more than one-third of his non-walk at bats.

And Taveras' slugging PCT was .358 before tonight. Dickerson's? .311.

Defensively, since he arrived last year, the Reds haven't played Dickerson in CF. They seem to want him in LF. Have to wonder why.

Dickerson may yet succeed, he's a terrific athlete and I'd love to see him do well. But the old refrain around here that Dickerson should be in CF over Taveras doesn't work IMO.

I kind of like Taveras. He needs to run more and his OBP needs to pick up a bit, but he plays his position well and makes contact at the plate. Whenever a player has no power he is missing a big feature, but some guys can still be effective. I think he'll start to run more soon and will be more of a factor then.

TheNext44
05-09-2009, 03:11 PM
I'm not really buying the "he doesn't hit for power but pitchers fear his ability to hit the ball hard" argument.



Yeah, it's a stretch, I know. But as I mentioned before, I'm a sucker for defending the tough cases.

Let me try another angle.

Most of the Saber numbers that we are using to judge Taveras, work best evaluating a player who is part of more "natural" offense, one that is based on just letting hitters hit away and assuming that the odds will work themselves out in the long run.

I believe that that is the best way to run an offense, however, that is not the offense that the Reds are running. They are running one that is based more on manufacturing runs ("small ball", but I hate that phrase). This is centered around not how many runs you score, but when you score them. It is centered around making the best use of the few runs that you do score. Again, I am not a fan of this method, just pointing out that it is the one that the Reds are using.

Because of this, the best way to evaluate a player within that type of offense, is to judge how well he plays his role within that offense. Within this type of offense, putting up big numbers is less important than doing the things that are needed of you on a day to day basis. Within this type of offense, the leadoff hitter is needed to get on base, run the bases well, and score often.

I think it is fair to say that Taveras has gotten on base at a decent but not exceptional rate, .348 as of today. He has run the bases well, 6 steals in 7 attempts and he has gone from first to third better than anyone we have seen in awhile. And he has scored a team high 19 runs, which would project to 114 over the course of the season.

Granted he only has 4 RBI's which is terrible. But that really is not his role on the team, within this offense. And to be fair, he has only had 28 PA's with man on base so far, due to the horrid start of the bottom of the lineup. However, he has done well in those PA's. .333 .391 .389 with 5 SH and 2 SF. He might not have driven in those men on base, but he is not making a lot of outs, and is doing his part in advancing them.

Combine in the fact that Taveras has reached base or driven in a run in 24 of the 27 games he has played in, and I think it is fair and rational to conclude that Taveras has been a productive part of this team's offense so far this season.

OnBaseMachine
05-11-2009, 12:39 PM
After watching Taveras play defense for the first time in person, I gotta say, I'm not very impressed with his defense. He does a decent job at going back on balls but he's horrible at coming in on flyballs. Take yesterday for example. Schumaker hit a flyball to shallow CF. Taveras got a horrible jump on the ball and it fell in for a double. That ball should have been caught for the second out and nobody on base. Instead, it fell in and led to a three run inning. He has great speed in CF but that doesn't help much when you have trouble judging flyballs.

traderumor
05-11-2009, 01:15 PM
After watching Taveras play defense for the first time in person, I gotta say, I'm not very impressed with his defense. He does a decent job at going back on balls but he's horrible at coming in on flyballs. Take yesterday for example. Schumaker hit a flyball to shallow CF. Taveras got a horrible jump on the ball and it fell in for a double. That ball should have been caught for the second out and nobody on base. Instead, it fell in and led to a three run inning. He has great speed in CF but that doesn't help much when you have trouble judging flyballs.

I'm not sure why, but he was obviously having a hard time judging fly balls yesterday. I haven't seen him that jittery out there the rest of the season.

Chip R
05-11-2009, 01:25 PM
I'm not sure why, but he was obviously having a hard time judging fly balls yesterday. I haven't seen him that jittery out there the rest of the season.

I agree. I noticed him having problems with that too.

dfs
05-11-2009, 01:52 PM
I agree. I noticed him having problems with that too.
His initial break seems to be the wrong direction at least 30% of the time.

wheels
05-11-2009, 02:01 PM
After watching Taveras play defense for the first time in person, I gotta say, I'm not very impressed with his defense. He does a decent job at going back on balls but he's horrible at coming in on flyballs. Take yesterday for example. Schumaker hit a flyball to shallow CF. Taveras got a horrible jump on the ball and it fell in for a double. That ball should have been caught for the second out and nobody on base. Instead, it fell in and led to a three run inning. He has great speed in CF but that doesn't help much when you have trouble judging flyballs.


Are you talking about that hit later in the game (6th inning or so)?

If that's the one that he barely cut off before it reached the gap, I remember letting out a groan, thinking that it shouldn't have dropped in the first place. It was a terrible read.

In all fairness, I expected MUCH worse from him from an offensive standpoint. It's likely we will still see him revert to being an ineffective offensive player, but the Reds have dodged a major bullet with him so far.

Let's hope Willy continues to have a freakshow type of season. The Reds can't afford a black hole from the leadoff slot. Not this year, with this club.

OnBaseMachine
05-11-2009, 02:13 PM
Are you talking about that hit later in the game (6th inning or so)?

If that's the one that he barely cut off before it reached the gap, I remember letting out a groan, thinking that it shouldn't have dropped in the first place. It was a terrible read.


Nah, it was in the third inning. The game was tied 1-1 and Wainwright led off the inning by striking out. Schumaker then lifted a flyball to CF. Taveras got a horrible jump and by the time he recovered it was too late. He dove for the ball and came up empty. Schumaker made it to second for a gift double. That misplay led to a three run inning. I remember that play you're talking about. Willy should have been charged with an error there, IMO.

Sea Ray
05-11-2009, 02:18 PM
I just saw a report on ESPN today where the "analyst" was saying what a good addition Willy has been for the Reds and how many teams are looking for speedy leadoff hitters like him. He went on to mention his contract and that Jocketty had found a bargain.

kaldaniels
05-11-2009, 02:19 PM
Nah, it was in the third inning. The game was tied 1-1 and Wainwright led off the inning by striking out. Schumaker then lifted a flyball to CF. Taveras got a horrible jump and by the time he recovered it was too late. He dove for the ball and came up empty. Schumaker made it to second for a gift double. That misplay led to a three run inning. I remember that play you're talking about. Willy should have been charged with an error there, IMO.

Misplayed? No argument here.

Not an official scorer in MLB would rule that an error however. It is what it is, a misplayed ball that resulted in a double.

OnBaseMachine
05-11-2009, 02:21 PM
Misplayed? No argument here.

Not an official scorer in MLB would rule that an error however. It is what it is, a misplayed ball that resulted in a double.

I'm referring to the play where Taveras cut off a ball in the gap and then dropped the ball. It happened in the same inning that Taveras misplayed that flyball.

kaldaniels
05-11-2009, 02:24 PM
I'm referring to the play where Taveras cut off a ball in the gap and then dropped the ball. It happened in the same inning that Taveras misplayed that flyball.

OK...I was referring to the play where Willy dove for the ball, "caught" it, then it popped out around the time he hit the ground.

BRM
05-11-2009, 03:16 PM
I just saw a report on ESPN today where the "analyst" was saying what a good addition Willy has been for the Reds and how many teams are looking for speedy leadoff hitters like him. He went on to mention his contract and that Jocketty had found a bargain.

I can understand ESPN saying that. He's getting on base at a decent clip and he's relatively inexpensive. Reports on his defense so far haven't been all that great but I doubt the "analyst" even discussed that part of his game.

flyer85
05-11-2009, 03:32 PM
that Jocketty had found a bargain.time to sell ... somebody needs a bridge.

REDREAD
05-11-2009, 04:05 PM
Basically at 27, you're what ya are with perhaps room for some minor tweaks. I'm sure there are historic exceptions but exceptions shouldn't be planned for...

I wonder why people don't take this attitude with Dickerson though?

Dickerson is the same age as Tavares and has been downright putrid this season (so far). I hope he gets better, but I am extremely thankful Walt signed Tavares and did not hand Dickerson the CF job, as most of the board wanted (and some continue to want).

With Tavares speed/defense factored in, he's approximately average.. Maybe slightly below average. At 6 million for 2 years, I'll take that. In contrast, EdE is 26 years old, making 7.6 million for 2 years, playing a less demanding defensive position and has an OPS of .476 .. where are all the torches and pitchforks for EdE?

Brandon Phillips is 27, and has a career line of OBP 309 SLG .425 OPS .734.
He has a huge contract. While he's definitely a plus defender, where are all the posts comparing his OBP to the "average" and complaining. Think about that, Wily T's career OBP is 332.

The point is that there's a lot worse roster inefficiencies on this team than Taveras.



Here's NL average for leadoff hitters so far

260 .326 .377 .703

and NL CFers

.264 .345 .431 .776



Taveras is OBP 355 and OPSing 733 so far, so he's just slightly below average. Still a bargain at the price he is paid.
Milwaukee is paying Cameron about 10 million.. that's the going rate for an average CF on the FA market.

BRM
05-11-2009, 04:08 PM
With Tavares speed/defense factored in, he's approximately average.. Maybe slightly below average. At 6 million for 2 years, I'll take that. In contrast, EdE is 26 years old, making 7.6 million for 2 years, playing a less demanding defensive position and has an OPS of .476 .. where are all the torches and pitchforks for EdE?

Brandon Phillips is 27, and has a career line of OBP 309 SLG .425 OPS .734.
He has a huge contract. While he's definitely a plus defender, where are all the posts comparing his OBP to the "average" and complaining. Think about that, Wily T's career OBP is 332.


Seriously? I've read quite a few on here who want EE to hit the road immediately. There are also tons of posts complaining about Brandon's OBP. Plenty of torches and pitchforks for both of those players. Plenty.

Ltlabner
05-11-2009, 04:11 PM
Was at the Saturday and Sunday games and got my first live look at Willy T. Ironically, my impressions of him, based on a whopping two games, were exactly opposite of what I was expecting: his defense left me cold and his bat wasn't as turd like as I expected.

He looked utterly lost in the field. Poujols launched one Saturday (IIRC) that he ran in on at first, and then had to rapidly back-peddle and leap up to catch. Several times he appeared to get bad and late reads on the ball. His wheels and the small OF helped his cause. While I wasn't expecting a gold-glove performance, he didn't even look "acceptable". He looked flat out horrible.

At the plate, OTOH, I was expecting him to look outclassed and he actually handled himself rather well. I don't know what his final count was over the two games, but just from appearance and memory he didn't look like a complete idiot. He seemed confident at the plate and every time I figured he'd ground out he either walked or got a solid hit.

Now, he may have had a couple of bad days in the field, and he was seeing the ball very well, so I'm not rushing to any conclusions at all based on two days. But for the two games I saw in person, I was surprised by what transpired.

REDREAD
05-11-2009, 04:15 PM
Faster, and works the count better too.

Still not a huge upgrade over Hopper overall.

M2 put it best when he said that players like Taveras are very common and easy to acquire.

Except they aren't very common and easy to acquire.
Hopper and Dickerson are clearly a few steps below Taveres.

There's a reason why guys like Gary Matthews, Andrew Jones, and Goodwin got huge contracts. Decent CF are a rare commodity. Yes, it was poor judgement to hand out those contracts, but it shows the supply/demand curve.

If guys like this are so easy to acquire, who was available on the FA list last winter? Who was on the trading block? Why was Milwaukee so willing to pay a premium for Cameron? Why are young good CF almost never traded, and when they are, they fetch a premium.. Look at the Cameron/Konerko deal.. if Cameron hadn't had an off year, he wouldn't have been available. Look at the Hamilton/Volquez deal.

Good (or even) average SS and CF are difficult to find.

Scrap Irony
05-11-2009, 04:16 PM
According to the defensive metrics, Taveras had a good week. Perhaps the eyes are correct; most likely, people see what they want to see.

REDREAD
05-11-2009, 04:17 PM
Placing Dickerson in CF and finding a legitimate bat to play LF would have made this such a better roster. Taveras was just a horrible target for acquisition.

Dickerson has been a huge disaster. He's only 6 months younger than Taveras and is just now getting a taste of the majors. Now the league knows how to pitch him, and he's performing poorly.

Thank God Dickerson was not handed the CF job. If he doesn't pick up his performance, he's not even worth keeping as a 5th OF. He has done absolutely nothing well this year. I hope he turns things around, but I am not optimistic.

Ltlabner
05-11-2009, 04:18 PM
According to the defensive metrics, Taveras had a good week. Perhaps the eyes are correct; most likely, people see what they want to see.

That was the part where I said, "his wheels and a small outfield helped his cause". He was able to get to a lot of the balls he got late starts and/or bad reads on. Doesn't change that he looked lost.

Also doesn't change that he's relying on a small outfield and his speed to compensate for a lack of natural instincts.

REDREAD
05-11-2009, 04:24 PM
Seriously? I've read quite a few on here who want EE to hit the road immediately. There are also tons of posts complaining about Brandon's OBP. Plenty of torches and pitchforks for both of those players. Plenty.


I have not seen dedicated threads or the amount of emotion attacking those 2 guys. Yeah, it gets mentioned in passing.

According to the stat page I pulled, Wily was posting about a 350 OBP.. I think a lot of people said they would be happy if he did that.. Yet we still get posts of people saying we should've just handed the job to Dickerson, who is much worse.

We still get people saying players like Taveras at 3 million/year are a dime a dozen, which isn't true.

Taveras is average or slightly below average, at a good price. He's on pace to score over 100 runs. That's a bargain. I'm sure other teams have better leadoff hitters, because other teams often put one of their best hitters there.
I'm not concerned with comping Wily to the "average leadoff hitter", I'm more interested in comping him to his peer CF -- he comes out well there, considering his salary and the fact the Reds didn't have to give up talent in a trade to get him.

jojo
05-11-2009, 04:25 PM
Also doesn't change that he's relying on a small outfield and his speed to compensate for a lack of natural instincts.

I think that's Taveras in a nutshell. I've seen Taveras a lot and I would characterize his defense this way.... he's fast and he has an above average arm.

REDREAD
05-11-2009, 04:27 PM
That was the part where I said, "his wheels and a small outfield helped his cause". He was able to get to a lot of the balls he got late starts and/or bad reads on. Doesn't change that he looked lost.

Also doesn't change that he's relying on a small outfield and his speed to compensate for a lack of natural instincts.

If he catches the ball, does it really matter?

I agree that Wily is not an elete defender, but he's better than what we've had in CF for a long time. If he looks ugly making the play, but still makes it, that's ok. I just want the out recorded.

By the time Wily loses his wheels, he's not going to be a Red anymore. I'm not worried if he uses his speed to compensate for poor reads off the bat.

jojo
05-11-2009, 04:27 PM
Taveras is OBP 355 and OPSing 733 so far, so he's just slightly below average.

Given where his performance last week pushed his overall numbers (now a wOBA=.340), if the season ended today, his production would be above average for his playing time both for his leather and lumber.

BRM
05-11-2009, 04:29 PM
I have not seen dedicated threads or the amount of emotion attacking those 2 guys. Yeah, it gets mentioned in passing.

According to the stat page I pulled, Wily was posting about a 350 OBP.. I think a lot of people said they would be happy if he did that.. Yet we still get posts of people saying we should've just handed the job to Dickerson, who is much worse.

We still get people saying players like Taveras at 3 million/year are a dime a dozen, which isn't true.

Taveras is average or slightly below average, at a good price. He's on pace to score over 100 runs. That's a bargain. I'm sure other teams have better leadoff hitters, because other teams often put one of their best hitters there.
I'm not concerned with comping Wily to the "average leadoff hitter", I'm more interested in comping him to his peer CF -- he comes out well there, considering his salary and the fact the Reds didn't have to give up talent in a trade to get him.

The reason people are claiming that is due to the upgrade that would have been gained in LF. The argument can easily be made that Dickerson in CF and Monster Bat in LF would be an upgrade from Willy in CF and Dickerson/Hairston in LF. Right now the Reds are getting horrible production from LF and below average offense from CF. The potential upgrade from a power bat in LF would most likely offset the losses in CF. That's the gist of the "Willy was a poor target" arguments.

I'd say a .350 OBP is the bare minimum required for Willy to be passable given his extreme lack of slugging and average defense. So far, I'm content with what he's provided. That said, I'd still rather have seen a big bat acquired for LF.

BRM
05-11-2009, 04:30 PM
I agree that Wily is not an elete defender, but he's better than what we've had in CF for a long time.


You mean last season. ;)

Scrap Irony
05-11-2009, 04:31 PM
That was the part where I said, "his wheels and a small outfield helped his cause". He was able to get to a lot of the balls he got late starts and/or bad reads on. Doesn't change that he looked lost.

Also doesn't change that he's relying on a small outfield and his speed to compensate for a lack of natural instincts.


I get that he looks lost. I agree for the most part. But he's doing the job, according to the numbers. That's all that matters, right?

Ltlabner
05-11-2009, 04:38 PM
But he's doing the job, according to the numbers. That's all that matters, right?

Sure.

Until he looses a step or is just having an off day running wise.

Until he plays a stadium that has a larger outfield.

Until he plays a stadium with a funky outfield layout.

Until he plays a stadium with weirdo air currents.

He's getting the job done yes, but relying on your speed to compensate for mistakes does expose you to the risk of more errors down the road.

jojo
05-11-2009, 04:43 PM
I get that he looks lost. I agree for the most part. But he's doing the job, according to the numbers. That's all that matters, right?

I think the criticism stems from the premise that given enough time, a player's true skill level will emerge from the noise of randomness. So it's better to view a player through a prism of the best estimate of this true skill rather than through short swathes of playing time.

In other words, April is important but what really matters is April through October.

wheels
05-11-2009, 04:56 PM
While I'm happy with his production on the 11th of May, I'm stilll wondering what those numbers will look like come September.

It could be a freakshow, or precipitous drop.

We shall see.

Scrap Irony
05-11-2009, 04:59 PM
Got it. But, throughout his career, Taveras is an average to slightly above/below average CF. In a smaller home park, in fact, he's been an outstanding defensive OF. In his two Houston years, Taveras' UZR was 9.8 and 18.0 respectively. That's more than likely what he's going to do in Cincinnati, right?

In short, the home park dimensions and the player fit each other well.

This is one of those things Jocketty got no credit for, even from those that argued Taveras a decent OF option. Taveras looks to be a solid (to outstanding) defender in Cincinnati and a slightly below average in larger parks. That equals out to above average with the leather.

I'm guessing Taveras drops back down to earth with the bat and again forgets to take a walk. The Reds will be lucky, IMO, if Taveras OPSes 650, let alone 740. I'm also guessing he steals only around 40 bases this year.

But, when Jocketty signed him, I thought he'd be that bad all year. So what do I know? Less than Jocketty, for sure.

M2
05-11-2009, 05:07 PM
Except they aren't very common and easy to acquire.

I've got a Nyjer Morgan and Jeremy Reed that says otherwise.

TRF
05-11-2009, 05:09 PM
Taveras is going to play 60+ more games on the road, and some of those in some big, strange parks. I watched every game against the Astros this year (rare that I get to see the Reds on TV) and he looks pretty bad in CF in regards to fly balls. I agree with the poster that says he breaks in the wrong direction 30% of the time. The smaller GABP helps him there, but I can see why he wasn't an elite defender, even with his speed, in Denver.

Offensively, his SLG has been as low as .306. When pitchers realize he can't hurt them with the bat, they can challenge him more. And he can't bunt every time out.

OnBaseMachine
05-11-2009, 05:21 PM
I get that he looks lost. I agree for the most part. But he's doing the job, according to the numbers. That's all that matters, right?

Well, except for yesterday when he misplayed a flyball into a double, which led to a three run inning.

I will say this. I've been impressed with his patience (3.98 P/PA) so far. Hopefully he can keep it up.

kaldaniels
05-11-2009, 05:31 PM
I've got a Nyjer Morgan and Jeremy Reed that says otherwise.

Without looking at Reed, Morgan has been in the Pirates system since 2002. They didn't acquire him overnight in the offseason.

M2
05-11-2009, 05:33 PM
Without looking at Reed, Morgan has been in the Pirates system since 2002. They didn't acquire him overnight in the offseason.

But you could have had him for some bellybutton lint that looked like Willie Stargell.

Roy Tucker
05-11-2009, 05:44 PM
I've been a little surprised by his lack of agression in stealing a base. There have been many times where another base would help immensely and he doesn't seem to be looking for it.

Granted my memory isn't what it used to be, but I thought when we saw him in his stints with Houston and Colorado, he actively used his speed as a weapon. He just seems to be another guy on the Reds.

kaldaniels
05-11-2009, 05:50 PM
But you could have had him for some bellybutton lint that looked like Willie Stargell.

Are you saying he was availible cheaply this past offseason? I'm not sure I'm reading you right.

nate
05-11-2009, 06:09 PM
I've got a Nyjer Morgan and Jeremy Reed that says otherwise.

Dave Cameron had an interesting article (http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/the-cf-wave) stating that there's been a tremendous surge in CF talent.




Baseball is a highly cyclical environment. Over time, we see shifts in strengths between positions due to seemingly random patterns. In the mid-90s, MLB saw an influx of offensive talent at shortstop that surpassed any that had been seen before - Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter, Nomar Garciaparra, and Miguel Tejada pushed the SS position into new offensive territory.

Then, it shifted, and third base seemed to be the spot where talent was flowing. Adrian Beltre, Aramis Ramirez, Eric Chavez, Troy Glaus, Hank Blalock, and Mark Teixeira all arrived within a few years of one another.

Thereís another one of these talent surges in process right now, and itís taking place in center field. The amount of talent currently playing center field in major league baseball is just astounding. Hereís the list of CFs, aged 26 and younger, who have gotten playing time in the majors during the first month of the 2009 season.

Grady Sizemore, Cleveland, 26
Franklin Gutierrez, Seattle, 26
Michael Bourn, Houston, 26
Jacoby Ellsbury, Boston, 25
Chris Young, Arizona, 25
Denard Span, Minnesota, 25
Elijah Dukes, Washington, 25
Brett Gardner, New York, 25
B.J. Upton, Tampa Bay, 24
Matt Kemp, Los Angeles, 24
Melky Cabrera, New York, 24
Ryan Sweeney, Oakland, 24
Adam Jones, Baltimore, 23
Dexter Fowler, Colorado, 23
Carlos Gomez, Minnesota, 23
Colby Rasmus, St. Louis, 22
Cameron Maybin, Florida, 22
Jordan Schafer, Atlanta, 22

Thatís 18 young center fielders headed towards the prime of their careers. Obviously, guys like Sizemore, Upton, Jones, and Kemp are on another level compared toBourn, Gardner, and Sweeney, but itís still fairly easy to pick 10 or so of the guys off that list and call them future all-stars. Or, in a couple of cases, current all-stars.

This is just a ridiculous amount of talent all coming into age at the same time. Even moreso than the SS/3B waves mentioned earlier, this one contains both elite talents and a lot of depth. Half of the teams in major league baseball are in possession of a young, talented center fielder. Some of them will flame out while others will move to the corner OF spots, but overall, weíre looking at CF becoming a very strong position going forward for the next 5 to 10 years.

TheNext44
05-11-2009, 06:13 PM
But you could have had him for some bellybutton lint that looked like Willie Stargell.

Which is more then the Reds gave up for Taveras. Cost the Reds $6M over two years to sign him, which he justifies if he produces 1.5-2 wins for them over those two years.

You can argue that there was no need to sign him, or that it would have been smarter to move Dickerson to CF and spend the money on say Abreu, but you can't argue that the Reds aren't currently getting back what they invested in him.

He should have been easy and cheap to acquire, and he was.

M2
05-11-2009, 06:20 PM
Are you saying he was availible cheaply this past offseason? I'm not sure I'm reading you right.

Yes, that's what I'm saying.


Which is more then the Reds gave up for Taveras. Cost the Reds $6M over two years to sign him, which he justifies if he produces 1.5-2 wins for them over those two years.

He's got a contract that will get him regular playing time and if that's the case, he needs to be a quality player. You won't find anyone else in the universe who cares less than me about your 1.5-2 theoretical wins. He sure as hell wasn't worth that last season or in 2006.

It all comes down to his OB. If it's above .350, he's doing enough of his job to keep it. If it's below .325 then the Reds could have found his level of speed and defense for the major league minimum.

WebScorpion
05-12-2009, 04:00 AM
5-for-5 tonight and scored 4 runs. He's beginning to make Walt look really smart... :) I'm pretty happy with a .381 OBP and 8 stolen bases in 9 tries out of our leadoff spot.

mth123
05-12-2009, 04:53 AM
5-for-5 tonight and scored 4 runs. He's beginning to make Walt look really smart... :) I'm pretty happy with a .381 OBP and 8 stolen bases in 9 tries out of our leadoff spot.

Kudos to Taveras. I've been one of his biggest critics and he is doing really well right now as a lead-off guy. If it continues the Reds will be in the thick of it all year.

nate
05-12-2009, 08:42 AM
Willy's locked in at the plate right now and that's great to see! I hope he keeps it up; it will make for a lot of early leads!

BuckeyeRedleg
05-12-2009, 08:46 AM
I wasn't a fan of the Taveras signing, but he's having a really good year to this point and I'm hoping he can maintain his current pace.

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 09:24 AM
Walt can sniff career peaks like some guys just know when to buy and sell; there is a place for some intuition in this game.

TheNext44
05-12-2009, 09:32 AM
From Fay's Blog:

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%3a080974c4-0f7c-4045-b569-acc345934971&plckCommentSortOrder=TimeStampAscending&sid=sitelife.cincinnati.com


The Willy Taveras signing was seen as a mistake in a lot of circles. The guy had a .309 on-base percentage last year, after all, not what you want from your leadoff man.

But Walt Jocketty was pretty adamant about wanting to add Taveras. He called Taveras' agent the minute Colorado non-tendered him. The Reds signed Taveras because they thought he was better than he showed last year in Colorado.

So far, it looks like a pretty good move. Taveras went 5-for-5, equaling a career-high, scored four runs and drove in two. He’s hit in 12 straight games, hitting .408 over that stretch. He's up to .315 overall with a .381 on-base percentage.

“He’s been huge,” Jerry Hairston Jr. said. “Over the last seven or eight games, he’s had an impact.
Anytime a leadoff hitter scores four runs . . .”


Taveras is hitting the ball with authority. He has eight extra-base hits in 111 at-bats. He had 18 in 479 at-bats last year.

"He's been working on it," Dusty Baker said. "(Brook Jacoby's) been working on it with him tirelessly, changing his stroke little by little, getting some timing and rhythm. You see he's been driving the ball. It's not in the air as much. It's line drives and ground balls. If he keeps working, he's going to hit a lot."

I was definitely in one of those "circles" when he signed.

I liked what he was doing at the beginning of the season, but still thought he would end up being either a meaningless signing, or a regrettable one by the end of the season.

Count me as officially out of the "circle."

This is a rare case where a hitter actually got better, significantly better after turning 27. Got to hand it Jacoby, and to Willy himself. And it's not just the #'s and his current streak that has converted me. Just compare his AB's to Janish's. Janish is currently OPS'ing .843, but watching him bat, it's hard to imagine him continuing this pace. Kinda like Bako at the beginning of last year.

But Willy is really crushing the ball and having strong PA's nearly every time. And even if he does hit a slump, I can see him bunting more to keep his OBP high.

While I doubt that he will be OPS'ing close to .800 at the end of the year, I can see him OPS'ing above .730 with an OBP of over .340, which with his speed and defense, would make him in my mind as at least a league average CF. That is something I never thought he was close to being.

thatcoolguy_22
05-12-2009, 09:35 AM
Walt can sniff career peaks like some guys just know when to buy and sell; there is a place for some intuition in this game.

Coming from a guy who was against the Wily signing just as much, if not more than everyone else... I concur completely.

WJ has proven it over and over. I once thought it was all Duncan and Pinella getting the most out of the players but maybe Walt's intuition played a larger role than I previously thought.

jojo
05-12-2009, 10:21 AM
This is a rare case where a hitter actually got better, significantly better after turning 27. Got to hand it Jacoby, and to Willy himself.

I think it's a little early to move the Taveras experiment into a Phase two clinical trial....

Puffy
05-12-2009, 10:39 AM
I was not one of those people who hated the signing - but I think he needs to go after the end of this year. Tavares is an odd year/even year type player (Bret Saberhagan was the king of this for a long stretch in the 80s). The Reds picked him up in time for his good year. Now they need to be smart and use the good year and then cut ties.

Its all science ;)

SMcGavin
05-12-2009, 12:04 PM
It's still really early. But I will say this, right now Willy Taveras is making me look stupid, and I love every minute of it.

NJReds
05-12-2009, 12:51 PM
I was not one of those people who hated the signing - but I think he needs to go after the end of this year. Tavares is an odd year/even year type player (Bret Saberhagan was the king of this for a long stretch in the 80s). The Reds picked him up in time for his good year. Now they need to be smart and use the good year and then cut ties.

Its all science ;)

So you're saying that you are not onboard for a 3 year-$20 contract extension? ;)

REDREAD
05-12-2009, 02:55 PM
I've got a Nyjer Morgan and Jeremy Reed that says otherwise.

Morgan was drafted by the Pirates and is still in their organization. He's just entering his third year. We would've had to give up something to trade to get him. I must admit, I don't know a whole lot about him, but he's only been in 45 games in CF for his entire career (and about the same on the corners)

Jeremy Reed is a step down from Taveras, but in all fairness, he is a cheaper player. I guess I will concede that one as a possible option, but he's not exactly an upgrade.. cheaper perhaps, but certainly a lower floor if he was given playing time too.

I think a lot of people forget that Walt commented that Wily needed to change his approach and up his OBP when he was signed and that Walt and Quirk thought it was fixable. So far, Wily is doing a great job. Maybe they looked at Reed and others and decided they had no upside that could be fixed.

I mean, it's like Schrourek is a better bet to be fixable than Jimmy Anderson.
A smart GM tries to place educated bets instead of just throwing random players against the wall and hoping they will stick. So far, Walt has been right, and I think the criitcisim needs to be reserved at this point.

REDREAD
05-12-2009, 02:59 PM
But you could have had him for some bellybutton lint that looked like Willie Stargell.

Not so sure about that. Why would the Pirates give him away, considering he is still so cheap? You are making the case that he's comparable to Taveras. If that's the case, the Pirates are getting a 3 million dollar/year player for almost minimum salary. They aren't going to give that away for lint.

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 03:04 PM
Morgan was drafted by the Pirates and is still in their organization. He's just entering his third year. We would've had to give up something to trade to get him. I must admit, I don't know a whole lot about him, but he's only been in 45 games in CF for his entire career (and about the same on the corners)

Jeremy Reed is a step down from Taveras, but in all fairness, he is a cheaper player. I guess I will concede that one as a possible option, but he's not exactly an upgrade.. cheaper perhaps, but certainly a lower floor if he was given playing time too.

I think a lot of people forget that Walt commented that Wily needed to change his approach and up his OBP when he was signed and that Walt and Quirk thought it was fixable. So far, Wily is doing a great job. Maybe they looked at Reed and others and decided they had no upside that could be fixed.

I mean, it's like Schrourek is a better bet to be fixable than Jimmy Anderson.
A smart GM tries to place educated bets instead of just throwing random players against the wall and hoping they will stick. So far, Walt has been right, and I think the criitcisim needs to be reserved at this point.

Neither Morgan nor Reed has ever been a fulltime player either. It's an apple and trucks comparison.

Walt has so far been right about Nix, Hernandez, Taveras, Masset, Rhodes.

The guy's made a career out of stomping other teams' guts at the margins of his rosters. While other teams get 50 innings of Majewski, Jocketty's teams get 70 innings of Masset; while some teams get 350 ABs of Juan Castro, Jocketty's teams get the same number of ABs from guys like Nix or Placido Palanco. Status quo for him. I'm not feelin' the Walt-hate either.

REDREAD
05-12-2009, 03:05 PM
It all comes down to his OB. If it's above .350, he's doing enough of his job to keep it. If it's below .325 then the Reds could have found his level of speed and defense for the major league minimum.

so, over 500 plate appearances, that's just a difference of 12.5 walks/singles.

12.5 walks is the difference between a 3 million dollar player and a 350k player? Seems like noise to me over 162 games.

IMO, it's more complicated than OBP to dictate whether Tavares is earning his money or not. The guy is on pace to score over 100 runs. Even though that is a counting stat and not good for comparing him vs his peers, if he scores 100 runs for this offensive challenged team, he's a bargain. Phillips and Dunn were the only two Reds to score 100 or more runs last year.

remdog
05-12-2009, 03:06 PM
I really respect Walt Jocketty and his abilities but annointing Willy Tavaras as 'great' in mid-May is sheer silliness.

Let's talk in October.

Rem

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 03:10 PM
I really respect Walt Jocketty and his abilities but annointing Willy Tavaras as 'great' in mid-May is sheer silliness.

Let's talk in October.

Rem


I may have missed it, but I don't see anyone calling Taveras "great." He doesn't have to be for 2 mill a season.

Ltlabner
05-12-2009, 03:12 PM
This is a rare case where a hitter actually got better, significantly better after turning 27*.

* for the first 5 weeks of the season.

We probably ought to wait until at least the end of the season, or preferably until the end of the 2010 season before declaring that he's found himself and defied the odds.

remdog
05-12-2009, 03:15 PM
I may have missed it, but I don't see anyone calling Taveras "great." He doesn't have to be for 2 mill a season.

Context.

Rem

Scrap Irony
05-12-2009, 03:20 PM
I really respect Walt Jocketty and his abilities but annointing Willy Tavaras as 'great' in mid-May is sheer silliness.

Let's talk in October.

Rem


Like the Jocketty Grading Poll?

REDREAD
05-12-2009, 03:20 PM
Neither Morgan nor Reed has ever been a fulltime player either. It's an apple and trucks comparison.

Walt has so far been right about Nix, Hernandez, Taveras, Masset, Rhodes.

The guy's made a career out of stomping other teams' guts at the margins of his rosters. Status quo for him. I'm not feelin' the Walt-hate either.

I'm really surprised about Masset. I was not impressed with the guy last season, but it looks like Walt proved me wrong. Getting Masset for 1/2 of season of Jr might turn out to be a huge win for the Reds.

Heck, getting Owens for 6 weeks of Dunn looks pretty huge too.

Really, the only Walt move that looks bad to this point has been Lincoln, but I think Lincoln will improve. Still might not be a great move though.

Yes, we can discuss Walt's non-moves, but I feel we have made progress under Walt. This is the first time I've been optimistic about the Reds in a long time.

remdog
05-12-2009, 03:33 PM
Like the Jocketty Grading Poll?

Yep. I gave Walt a C because he didn't bring in a big (RH) bat but maybe he got his budget cut.

I'll wait and see how the season plays out. It's not like we haven't seen this scenario before.

Rem

remdog
05-12-2009, 03:38 PM
I'm really surprised about Masset. I was not impressed with the guy last season, but it looks like Walt proved me wrong. Getting Masset for 1/2 of season of Jr might turn out to be a huge win for the Reds.

Heck, getting Owens for 6 weeks of Dunn looks pretty huge too.

Really, the only Walt move that looks bad to this point has been Lincoln, but I think Lincoln will improve. Still might not be a great move though.

Yes, we can discuss Walt's non-moves, but I feel we have made progress under Walt. This is the first time I've been optimistic about the Reds in a long time.

Execept for liking Massett's stuff when he came over last summer, I agree with all of that.

I thought Massett had a chance to be good---but not this good---so I expect a bit of regression there.

I actually backed resigning Lincoln (but I would have liked a one year contract) because I felt that he had a chance to get stronger another year down the road from arm surgery. Yet, I acknowledge it was a risk.

Rem

LvJ
05-12-2009, 03:42 PM
I didn't like the signing, but so far so good. :)

dougdirt
05-12-2009, 03:46 PM
Willy Taveras is striking out much less than he has in the past and walking slightly more than he has in the past. The progress he has made isn't anything that I don't think he can't sustain for the most part.

Rojo
05-12-2009, 03:56 PM
This is a rare case where a hitter actually got better, significantly better after turning 27.

Players don't usually change spots at that age -- e.g. a judy doesn't suddenly discover power -- but 27-32 is when most players paint their ceiling.

membengal
05-12-2009, 03:58 PM
Taveras' career SLG: .341

Taveras' SLG to date in 2009: .414

His signing made me itchy because of his extreme lack of pop (putting a ton of pressure on OBP to make up for it), but he has been driving the ball with far more authority and hitting far more line drives so far this year than his career would suggest. The note somewhere upstream (post #96 by Next44 from Fay's blog) that Taveras has been working Jacoby on more consistent contact with power is noteworthy to me.

So far, very much pleasantly surprised and delighted.

Scrap Irony
05-12-2009, 04:03 PM
Could Coors have had a negative impact on his slugging? Restated: could a smaller OF actually help Taveras hitting as well?

Or is it all luck, prime, and Jacoby?

Ltlabner
05-12-2009, 04:09 PM
Could Coors have had a negative impact on his slugging? Restated: could a smaller OF actually help Taveras hitting as well?

Or is it all luck, prime, and Jacoby?

Or that it's only 5 weeks of performance?

TheNext44
05-12-2009, 04:22 PM
I think it's a little early to move the Taveras experiment into a Phase two clinical trial....


* for the first 5 weeks of the season.

We probably ought to wait until at least the end of the season, or preferably until the end of the 2010 season before declaring that he's found himself and defied the odds.

Completely agree. No definite conclusions until the end of the season at the earliest.

However...

From watching him, I can really see that he is not the hitter that his career stats says he is. As Doug pointed out, he does not have an alarming LD % or BAPIP, or Bunt %, in fact, those are around or even a bit lower than his career numbers. He basically is making more contact and seeing more pitches than usual. And even those are not at an unsustainable level.

This could be just from random variance due to the sample size, but it very well could be due to a changed approach. Watching him hit, my opinion is that it is the later. Well see...

wheels
05-12-2009, 04:33 PM
Once again.....

It's May.

The are NO forgone conclusions in May.

I'm happy with the way things are going, but at this point, there is more evidence pointing towards flukiness than greatness.

A career vs. five weeks.

I want to be wrong in the worst possible way, but I ain't no Kool Aid drinker, either.

Let's give it some more time, fellas.

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 04:36 PM
I'll wait and see how the season plays out. It's not like we haven't seen this scenario before.

Rem

I don't disagree that this team could go in the tank, but I don't think that will be because of Walt's additions (with the possible exception of Owings).

One might argue that he "didn't do enough," and that's a fair argument, but this thread is about Taveras (and tangentially, who Walt "did" acquire); I'd say he's done an exceptional job with his acquisitions (especially when considering bang for buck value).

TheNext44
05-12-2009, 04:48 PM
Walt has so far been right about Nix, Hernandez, Taveras, Masset, Rhodes.

The guy's made a career out of stomping other teams' guts at the margins of his rosters. While other teams get 50 innings of Majewski, Jocketty's teams get 70 innings of Masset; while some teams get 350 ABs of Juan Castro, Jocketty's teams get the same number of ABs from guys like Nix or Placido Palanco. Status quo for him. I'm not feelin' the Walt-hate either.

I think this is right on the money.

We all talk about outliers and brush them off, saying since they don't fit the norm, we can't count on them. But isn't that what separates a good GM from a great GM? The ability to find guys who are outliers? Players who will break away from their projections and provide better production than expected?

Every GM can use stats to make the easy calls. The ones that win championships are the ones that can consistently find and get the players before they break through. Guys like Schurholtz, Epstein, Beane, and Jocketty do it too often, over too many years for it to be good luck. And guys like Bowden, Malone, Bavasi, and Wade fail at it too often for theirs to be bad luck.

jojo
05-12-2009, 04:49 PM
Completely agree. No definite conclusions until the end of the season at the earliest.

However...

From watching him, I can really see that he is not the hitter that his career stats says he is. As Doug pointed out, he does not have an alarming LD % or BAPIP, or Bunt %, in fact, those are around or even a bit lower than his career numbers. He basically is making more contact and seeing more pitches than usual. And even those are not at an unsustainable level.

This could be just from random variance due to the sample size, but it very well could be due to a changed approach. Watching him hit, my opinion is that it is the later. Well see...

Here's a list of things that are significantly better/different for Taveras in '09 than his career numbers:

XBH% and ISO
BB rate
K rate
contact rate
swinging significantly less
BB/K
GB% sig. lower
prowess with the leather


If this is sustainable, he's becoming a red dragon before our very eyes.... :cool:

remdog
05-12-2009, 04:54 PM
I don't disagree that this team could go in the tank, but I don't think that will be because of Walt's additions (with the possible exception of Owings).

One might argue that he "didn't do enough," and that's a fair argument, but this thread is about Taveras (and tangentially, who Walt "did" acquire); I'd say he's done an exceptional job with his acquisitions (especially when considering bang for buck value).

Ironically, I liked the Owings acqusition. Yeah, it ment that we gave up Dunn but he was obviously not going to be in the Reds plans anyway.

I'm giving thought to dropping into Petco this Sunday to watch the Reds and Pads do battle. The one negative for me is that Arroyo is scheduled to start. I'd much rather watch any other Reds starter than Bronson. Ugg.

Rem

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 04:57 PM
Ironically, I liked the Owings acqusition. Yeah, it ment that we gave up Dunn but he was obviously not going to be in the Reds plans anyway.

I'm giving thought to dropping into Petco this Sunday to watch the Reds and Pads do battle. The one negative for me is that Arroyo is scheduled to start. I'd much rather watch any other Reds starter than Bronson. Ugg.

Rem

It's probably a bit early to completely jettison Owings, but the early returns are pretty ugly, IMO.

And you're right, Bronson's untenable and I highly doubt there's going to be a major correction for him; I'd be stunned if the guy's ERA or FIP drops below 5.5 for the season.

fearofpopvol1
05-12-2009, 04:58 PM
Neither Morgan nor Reed has ever been a fulltime player either. It's an apple and trucks comparison.

Walt has so far been right about Nix, Hernandez, Taveras, Masset, Rhodes.

The guy's made a career out of stomping other teams' guts at the margins of his rosters. While other teams get 50 innings of Majewski, Jocketty's teams get 70 innings of Masset; while some teams get 350 ABs of Juan Castro, Jocketty's teams get the same number of ABs from guys like Nix or Placido Palanco. Status quo for him. I'm not feelin' the Walt-hate either.

He has been right SO FAR about those players. I personally thought the Lincoln signing was awful, but I guess you can't always be right.

Falls City Beer
05-12-2009, 05:00 PM
He has been right SO FAR about those players. I personally thought the Lincoln signing was awful, but I guess you can't always be right.

What's good about him being right SO FAR is that none of them are signed for nine years--or even three. So they'll not destroy the team's future if they go south next season.

Blitz Dorsey
05-12-2009, 05:00 PM
Time will tell about Willy's OBP and everything else offensively (and I am very encouraged). But I will say one thing about him that doesn't change: he seems like a good guy and his teammates like him. When interviewed, he is all about the team and winning. I just like the guy's attitude.

Add in the fact that he is more than getting it done offensively and I'm glad a lot of us were wrong about this one (at least so far). I definitely wouldn't want Dickerson as the everyday CF of the team over Taveras and coming into the season I remember thinking I would prefer Dickerson.

remdog
05-12-2009, 05:03 PM
It's probably a bit early to completely jettison Owings, but the early returns are pretty ugly, IMO.


As ugly as Josh Fogg!?! And, you've gotta' admit, his bat brings something to the table and gives the Reds flexibility that other teams don't have.

Micah has been the victum of some shoddy play behind him. I'm willing to give him another 4-8 starts and see how he progresses. The alternative seems to be to bring up Homer and I'm guessing that you're not a big fan of that move. :)

Rem

TheNext44
05-12-2009, 05:04 PM
Here's a list of things that are significantly better/different for Taveras in '09 than his career numbers:

XBH% and ISO
BB rate
K rate
contact rate
swinging significantly less
BB/K
GB% sig. lower
prowess with the leather


If this is sustainable, he's becoming a red dragon before our very eyes.... :cool:

The bold stuff is all the same stuff. Making better contact and seeing more pitches. That is sustainable and if it is sustained, will lead to a higher OBP.

The more power (SLG, ISOP, GB%), I agree, will revert back to norm for Taveras most likely.

So no red dragon, but maybe a mean German Shepherd, which is better than the cute kitten I was expecting. :cool:

Blitz Dorsey
05-12-2009, 05:06 PM
I agree Rem on Owings. Nothing wrong with keeping him in there a while so we know exactly what we've got in him. He isn't killing us or anything. In fact, when you factor in his bat, he's actually been an asset overall. Obviously the Reds need him to pitch better, but I don't think he's that far off (and is a much better No. 5 than we've had in years past... Fogg, Dave Williams, etc).

And considering he's the best bat on our bench, it makes it a no-brainer to keep him as the No. 5 starter unless he starts to kill the Reds as a pitcher.

Ltlabner
05-12-2009, 05:08 PM
So no red dragon, but maybe a mean German Shepherd, which is better than the cute kitten I was expecting.

You were expecting a cute kitten? Here's the cat I was expecting.

http://www.plumb-biz.com/images/fun_orig/mangy_cat_among_pipes2.jpg

fearofpopvol1
05-12-2009, 05:09 PM
What's good about him being right SO FAR is that none of them are signed for nine years--or even three. So they'll not destroy the team's future if they go south next season.

Hard to argue that.

On a seperate note, I think Arroyo will finish with an ERA in the 4s somewhere...which isn't great, but not horrible either.

wheels
05-12-2009, 06:06 PM
I think this is right on the money.

We all talk about outliers and brush them off, saying since they don't fit the norm, we can't count on them. But isn't that what separates a great GM from a great GM? The ability to find guys who are outliers? Players who will break away from their projections and provide better production than expected?

Every GM can use stats to make the easy calls. The ones that win championships are the ones that can consistently find and get the players before they break through. Guys like Schurholtz, Epstein, Beane, and Jocketty do it too often, over too many years for it to be good luck. And guys like Bowden, Malone, Bavasi, and Wade fail at it too often for theirs to be bad luck.

That's a very good point.

I'm not sold on Taveras, but if they can hang around long enough, I think I'm more confident in Jocketty finding a bat than I have been almost any Reds GM in recent history.

He's been there, done that.

Keep your fingers crossed.

REDREAD
05-13-2009, 05:03 PM
As ugly as Josh Fogg!?! And, you've gotta' admit, his bat brings something to the table and gives the Reds flexibility that other teams don't have.

Micah has been the victum of some shoddy play behind him. I'm willing to give him another 4-8 starts and see how he progresses. The alternative seems to be to bring up Homer and I'm guessing that you're not a big fan of that move. :)

Rem


Looking at Ownings' early returns, he is 3-3 with a 4.33 ERA. He's had two great starts (vs ARI and ATL) 2 bad starts, and 2 ok starts. I will take that from my #5 starter who is only making 420k.. His bat is a bonus.

He's shown me enough to make me believe that he might get better as the season goes on.

Chip R
05-13-2009, 08:37 PM
Looking at Ownings' early returns, he is 3-3 with a 4.33 ERA. He's had two great starts (vs ARI and ATL) 2 bad starts, and 2 ok starts. I will take that from my #5 starter who is only making 420k.. His bat is a bonus.

Yep. Our 5th starters from the past several years should have been as bad as Owings. Hell, our 4th and 3rd starters should have been that bad.

Falls City Beer
05-13-2009, 08:44 PM
Yep. Our 5th starters from the past several years should have been as bad as Owings. Hell, our 4th and 3rd starters should have been that bad.

Trouble is, the Reds true #5 is sittin' pretty with a 7.00 ERA.

cincrazy
05-13-2009, 08:51 PM
Yep. Our 5th starters from the past several years should have been as bad as Owings. Hell, our 4th and 3rd starters should have been that bad.

During the Elmer Dessens era, Micah Owings would have been our ace. 'Nuff said.

TheNext44
05-13-2009, 08:52 PM
During the Elmer Dessens era, Micah Owings would have been our ace. 'Nuff said.

The fact that it is called the "Elmer Dessens" era, says it all.

Chip R
05-13-2009, 09:00 PM
Trouble is, the Reds true #5 is sittin' pretty with a 7.00 ERA.


Well, you don't like any of our starters so I'll consider the source.

cincrazy
05-13-2009, 09:02 PM
Trouble is, the Reds true #5 is sittin' pretty with a 7.00 ERA.

If Bronson Arroyo is your #5 starter, that's one hell of a rotation, if I must say so myself.

Falls City Beer
05-13-2009, 09:04 PM
If Bronson Arroyo is your #5 starter, that's one hell of a rotation, if I must say so myself.

6.47 FIP--I'd call that garden variety #5 production.

traderumor
05-13-2009, 09:09 PM
6.47 FIP--I'd call that garden variety #5 production.Of course, Arroyo has no history that might tell us his numbers will improve and are currently skewed by one ridiculous outing. :rolleyes:

Handofdeath
05-13-2009, 09:36 PM
Taveras has not had an OBP of less than .329 all season and is in the middle of a 13 game hitting streak. His OBP in the minors was .368. Why change what is working and why can't it work over a full season?

edabbs44
05-13-2009, 10:51 PM
Taveras has not had an OBP of less than .329 all season and is in the middle of a 13 game hitting streak. His OBP in the minors was .368. Why change what is working and why can't it work over a full season?

It very well might work.

fearofpopvol1
05-13-2009, 10:55 PM
6.47 FIP--I'd call that garden variety #5 production.

I'd say as a Red...he's easily been the Reds 2nd best starter over the last 3 years. And you're also the person that was against trading him to Atlanta (when they showed interest in the past).

Sure, he's not been so good so far this year. But you're basing it off of 6 weeks of play. It's a long season.

RedsManRick
05-13-2009, 11:10 PM
6.47 FIP--I'd call that garden variety #5 production.

Let's see where we're at come the end of the season. Otherwise, we better also be talking about the fact that we have two starters with FIPs under 3.50.

As for Arroyo, let's be real. He's had 2 excellent games, 1 good one, 1 poor, 1 very poor, and 1 horrific. That's the kind of pitcher he is. ERA is a misleading stat. Allow 6 runs or 11 and your team isn't gonna win. Again, let's see what the balance is at the end of the season.

I don't think there's any doubt that this is the deepest our pitching staff has been in nearly 20 years. Compared to most teams, Owings is a solid to good #5 starter whose bat makes him equivalent to a #4.

Sea Ray
05-13-2009, 11:11 PM
Bronson has won us five games. Granted he must be close to the top of the league in terms of run support but he's also in the league leaders in wins as well.

thatcoolguy_22
05-13-2009, 11:19 PM
Bronson has won us five games. Granted he must be close to the top of the league in terms of run support but he's also in the league leaders in wins as well.

But a pitcher's win/loss record says almost nothing about a pitcher's performance. I present you Johan Santana... ERA+ 559 ERA 0.78 WHIP 0.97 W/L........4-2. Arroyo 5-2 go figure :dunno:

Arroyo will gradually trend towards the norm. By then of the year be somewhere between a 95 and 110 ERA+. He is a solid #3 pitcher and continues to be an asset to this team.

nate
05-14-2009, 09:19 AM
Bronson has won us five games. Granted he must be close to the top of the league in terms of run support but he's also in the league leaders in wins as well.

Well, the Reds have won five games that Bronson has pitched in. I wouldn't say he's "won" all of them other than statistically.

WRT run support, he's gotten about 5.7/9 runs a game from the offense. Compared to his ERA, it would seem something is afoot. I think his "real" record so far is something like 3-4 or 4-3.

Jpup
05-14-2009, 09:24 AM
I really am starting to like that Willy T signing after all. I hope he keeps it up. He's playing great.

REDREAD
05-14-2009, 09:54 AM
But a pitcher's win/loss record says almost nothing about a pitcher's performance. I present you Johan Santana... ERA+ 559 ERA 0.78 WHIP 0.97 W/L........4-2. Arroyo 5-2 go figure :dunno:
.

W-L isn't a good tool for comparing Bronson to Santana.. however it is a good tool for telling the value of Bronson to the Reds team.

For example, if a pitcher is leading 10-0, they are not going to worry about their ERA. They aren't going to care if they give up a few solo HR, they are just going to avoid walks and pitch to contact. Most really don't care if they win the game 10-2 or 10-5.. the goal is to get the win.

Bronson's 5 wins have been valuable. Sure, the offense has helped, but he did his job on those days. Some days, a pitcher's job is easier than others.

Falls City Beer
05-14-2009, 11:29 AM
I'd say as a Red...he's easily been the Reds 2nd best starter over the last 3 years. And you're also the person that was against trading him to Atlanta (when they showed interest in the past).

Sure, he's not been so good so far this year. But you're basing it off of 6 weeks of play. It's a long season.

I think I've made it abundantly clear that I regard Arroyo's production in 2006-2007 as valuable.

His numbers last season revealed him to be helpful only about half the time, but the other half giving the team very little chance to win. His walks went up, and his Ks went down. The same thing is happening this season. But if he's going to turn it around to "average," he's got a lot of work to do. And with his stuff (flatter, less bite), I don't see it happening. Minus a miracle.

SMcGavin
05-14-2009, 11:54 AM
I think I've made it abundantly clear that I regard Arroyo's production in 2006-2007 as valuable.

His numbers last season revealed him to be helpful only about half the time, but the other half giving the team very little chance to win. His walks went up, and his Ks went down. The same thing is happening this season. But if he's going to turn it around to "average," he's got a lot of work to do. And with his stuff (flatter, less bite), I don't see it happening. Minus a miracle.

In 2008 Arroyo had the highest K/9 of his career.

Sea Ray
05-14-2009, 12:17 PM
But a pitcher's win/loss record says almost nothing about a pitcher's performance. I present you Johan Santana... ERA+ 559 ERA 0.78 WHIP 0.97 W/L........4-2. Arroyo 5-2 go figure :dunno:

Arroyo will gradually trend towards the norm. By then of the year be somewhere between a 95 and 110 ERA+. He is a solid #3 pitcher and continues to be an asset to this team.

Oh he's been lucky to be sure but remember the saying "I'd rather be lucky than good."

Simply put I don't care how poorly he pitches so long as it doesn't hurt the team in the win column

CTA513
05-14-2009, 12:19 PM
But a pitcher's win/loss record says almost nothing about a pitcher's performance. I present you Johan Santana... ERA+ 559 ERA 0.78 WHIP 0.97 W/L........4-2. Arroyo 5-2 go figure :dunno:

Arroyo will gradually trend towards the norm. By then of the year be somewhere between a 95 and 110 ERA+. He is a solid #3 pitcher and continues to be an asset to this team.

Santanas 2 loses also came in games in which he didn't give up an earned run.

Falls City Beer
05-14-2009, 12:51 PM
In 2008 Arroyo had the highest K/9 of his career.

You're right. I had mistakenly included 2009's stats with his 2008's from an earlier post. But, however instructive it may or may not be, since the start of 2008, his Ks are down from his 2006-07 numbers, and his walks are definitely up. He could do the same thing he did last season and make a massive correction, but at age 32, I wouldn't consider it money in the bank.

Cedric
05-14-2009, 12:53 PM
Getting back to Willy...

Is anyone not thrilled to see the way this guy is playing? Different and fun style of baseball around here.

Falls City Beer
05-14-2009, 12:54 PM
Getting back to Willy...

Is anyone not thrilled to see the way this guy is playing? Different and fun style of baseball around here.

Yeah, it's a nice change I agree. I like guys that go 1st to 3rd and home from first on a double. Breath of fresh air from the stone tablets that moved around the bases last year.

Can't say I didn't see it coming, though. :)

jojo
05-14-2009, 01:14 PM
Yeah, it's a nice change I agree. I like guys that go 1st to 3rd and home from first on a double. Breath of fresh air from the stone tablets that moved around the bases last year.
Can't say I didn't see it coming, though. :)

Don't pat yourself too hard since you've already called the season.... :cool:


Last night's game will be remembered as the game this season where the Reds were winnowed out of the contention cluster which includes Chicago and St. Louis and temporarily Milwaukee. Tonight's game will be putting the corpse on ice. I'll say Milwaukee 10-4.

Concerning Arroyo, he was projected to be something like league average. While I think you're way too down on him at this point, I do agree that his first 7 starts necessitate downgrading the expected "mean" he'll regress to over the course of the rest of the season (i.e. his next 24 starts are probably going to be something less than league average).

fearofpopvol1
05-14-2009, 01:16 PM
I think I've made it abundantly clear that I regard Arroyo's production in 2006-2007 as valuable.

His numbers last season revealed him to be helpful only about half the time, but the other half giving the team very little chance to win. His walks went up, and his Ks went down. The same thing is happening this season. But if he's going to turn it around to "average," he's got a lot of work to do. And with his stuff (flatter, less bite), I don't see it happening. Minus a miracle.

I'd say it's way too early to jump to such conclusions. Arroyo has historically had bad slumps here and there and has then turned it around and been great. It's not like he's 37. I think he deserves the benefit of the doubt until he proves otherwise.

Falls City Beer
05-14-2009, 01:35 PM
Don't pat yourself too hard since you've already called the season.... :cool:



Concerning Arroyo, he was projected to be something like league average. While I think you're way too down on him at this point, I do agree that his first 7 starts necessitate downgrading the expected "mean" he'll regress to over the course of the rest of the season (i.e. his next 24 starts are probably going to be something less than league average).

I still think all three of those teams will finish ahead of the Reds; my "calling the season" is nothing different from what I've predicted since the prediction thread: 82-80.

AmarilloRed
05-14-2009, 01:49 PM
Anyone else think Taveras' OBP is largely driven by his BA: His BA sits at .322, and he has only 11 walks on the season. I fully expect his OBP will drop considerably when he returns to earth.

Chip R
05-14-2009, 01:52 PM
Anyone else think Taveras' OBP is largely driven by his BA: His BA sits at .328, and he has only 11 walks on the season. I fully expect his OBP will drop considerably when he returns to earth.


That's the big question, though. Can he keep his batting average up? If he can, it's all good. If he can't, then there may be some problems.

I'll bet there are people on this board who didn't think he'd get 11 walks for the season.

nate
05-14-2009, 02:04 PM
I still think all three of those teams will finish ahead of the Reds; my "calling the season" is nothing different from what I've predicted since the prediction thread: 82-80.

I can't believe you predicted one MORE win than I did!

Is that a "Price is Right" strategy?

:cool:

Handofdeath
05-14-2009, 05:59 PM
Anyone else think Taveras' OBP is largely driven by his BA: His BA sits at .322, and he has only 11 walks on the season. I fully expect his OBP will drop considerably when he returns to earth.


Right now his OBP is 60 points higher than his BA. If his BA drops back down to his career number of .285, his OBP would still be .345 which is very respectable. He's also on pace for 55 or so BB's which would put him in the Top 50 in the NL last season. I say enjoy what we're seeing out of WT. He's at his prime age for a baseball player and he might have just put it together.

Ron Madden
05-18-2009, 02:47 AM
Once again.....

It's May.

The are NO forgone conclusions in May.

I'm happy with the way things are going, but at this point, there is more evidence pointing towards flukiness than greatness.

A career vs. five weeks.

I want to be wrong in the worst possible way, but I ain't no Kool Aid drinker, either.

Let's give it some more time, fellas.


Exactly the way I feel. :beerme:

GAC
05-18-2009, 06:13 AM
Anyone else think Taveras' OBP is largely driven by his BA: His BA sits at .322, and he has only 11 walks on the season. I fully expect his OBP will drop considerably when he returns to earth.

His BA is now .293. Still 10 pts above his career avg. What I have seen so far from the guy has been welcomed. But by season's end I still expect the guy to level out at his career averages of ....

.283 BA .332 OB% .340 SLG% and a sub-700 OPS.

I don' think that is what most want to see out of a CFer. And for a leadoff to never once crest the 40 BB/season plateau, that also is not good.

Raisor
05-18-2009, 08:52 AM
As of the morning of 5/18

NL Average Leadoff hitter:
.267 .331 .393 .724

NL Average CF
.265 .343 .425 .768

Willy Taveras
.293 .351 .376 .727

Reds Leadoff hitters
281 .333 .386 .719

Reds CFers
.287 .341 .373 .715

Scrap Irony
05-18-2009, 09:31 AM
How do these numbers compare to last year's stats at the same time? That might set up yet another comparison that will spark more discussion.

nate
05-18-2009, 09:40 AM
How do these numbers compare to last year's stats at the same time? That might set up yet another comparison that will spark more discussion.

.241/.313/.293/.606

Homer Bailey
05-18-2009, 11:24 AM
How do these numbers compare to last year's stats at the same time? That might set up yet another comparison that will spark more discussion.


.241/.313/.293/.606

Haha. Comparing to Corey Patterson isn't really fair.

I'm happy with what I've seen from Taveras so far.

nate
05-18-2009, 11:29 AM
Haha. Comparing to Corey Patterson isn't really fair.

I'm happy with what I've seen from Taveras so far.

I didn't!

Unless I'm missing a joke...wouldn't be the first time!

Scrap Irony
05-18-2009, 02:06 PM
Are those 2008 Red CF numbers or Taveras' 2008 CF numbers? I wasn't clear, but wanted to see 08 Red CFers. If those are Red numbers, that's a huge advantage so far this season for Cincinnati and at least one reason the offense isn't quite as horrid as it was supposed to be.

Homer Bailey
05-18-2009, 02:12 PM
I didn't!

Unless I'm missing a joke...wouldn't be the first time!

I thought your post was referring to the Reds leadoff hitters at this point last year, but after re-reading, I'm assuming you were referring to Willy's numbers that this point last year?

nate
05-18-2009, 02:16 PM
Are those 2008 Red CF numbers or Taveras' 2008 CF numbers? I wasn't clear, but wanted to see 08 Red CFers. If those are Red numbers, that's a huge advantage so far this season for Cincinnati and at least one reason the offense isn't quite as horrid as it was supposed to be.

The numbers I posted are what Willy did through May 17, 2008.

I don't have the Reds CF through May 17, 2008 but here's what they did in ALL of 2008: .249/.299/.401/.700

Homer Bailey
05-18-2009, 02:17 PM
The numbers I posted are what Willy did through May 17, 2008.

I don't have the Reds CF through May 17, 2008 but here's what they did in ALL of 2008: .249/.299/.401/.700

So nooooow I'll say, hey, comparing Willy to Corey isn't exactly fair :D

Raisor
05-18-2009, 02:24 PM
2008 Reds CF
76.79 RC per 700 PA's

2009 Reds CF
89.8 RC per 700 PA's.

jojo
05-18-2009, 02:32 PM
2008 Reds CF
76.79 RC per 700 PA's

2009 Reds CF
89.8 RC per 700 PA's.

So Taveras is roughly a win better than production driven by a historically bad season by a centerfielder? :cool:

Sea Ray
05-18-2009, 02:51 PM
2008 Reds CF
76.79 RC per 700 PA's

2009 Reds CF
89.8 RC per 700 PA's.

Does RC take into consideration his SBs? Either way he's a big improvement over last year. I think Willy was a good pickup for this year. The gamble on Walt's part was giving him that 2nd year with a raise to boot.

Raisor
05-18-2009, 02:55 PM
Does RC take into consideration his SBs? .

yes

TheNext44
05-18-2009, 03:10 PM
So Taveras is roughly a win better than production driven by a historically bad season by a centerfielder? :cool:

Those 2008 numbers include 154 PA's by Bruce:

.342 .432 .566 .998

80 PA's by Freel:

.293 .338 .347 .684

66 PA's by Hairston:

.362 .409 .569 .978

28 PA's by Dickerson:

.391 .481 .652 1.134


That accounts for nearly half of the PA's Reds CF's had last year.

Patterson has a dismal year last year, but Reds CF's had a decent one on the whole. 76 Runs Created is not a dismal number for a team's CF. Not good, not what you want, but nothing like the number that Patterson would have put up if he played the whole season there by himself.

And I bet 89 Runs Created would be in the top half of CF's league wide. Could be wrong, but that is a perfectly acceptable number from a CF that provides league average defense or better.

TheNext44
05-18-2009, 03:20 PM
Does RC take into consideration his SBs? Either way he's a big improvement over last year. I think Willy was a good pickup for this year. The gamble on Walt's part was giving him that 2nd year with a raise to boot.

That I will never understand. There is no way that he has such a great year this year that he would get much more than $4M arbitration next year, and the risk was too good that he would have a bad year and deserve a lot less, or even get cut.

It might work out a little bit, but at the time, it was not a wise decision.

jojo
05-18-2009, 03:37 PM
Those 2008 numbers include 154 PA's by Bruce:

.342 .432 .566 .998

80 PA's by Freel:

.293 .338 .347 .684

66 PA's by Hairston:

.362 .409 .569 .978

28 PA's by Dickerson:

.391 .481 .652 1.134


That accounts for nearly half of the PA's Reds CF's had last year.

Patterson has a dismal year last year, but Reds CF's had a decent one on the whole. 76 Runs Created is not a dismal number for a team's CF. Not good, not what you want, but nothing like the number that Patterson would have put up if he played the whole season there by himself.

And I bet 89 Runs Created would be in the top half of CF's league wide. Could be wrong, but that is a perfectly acceptable number from a CF that provides league average defense or better.

I think my point got missed a bit. Let me rephrase, it took over half of the '08 centerfield production to come from a guy who had a historically bad season for Taveras' current production to be a win upgrade assuming he manages to maintain his current significantly-better-than-projected production over 700 PAs.

This :cool: really should've been this :eek: in my original post.... :cool:

I think if the Reds really wanted to make a splash this season, they should've toughed it out with Bruce in center for a season or two while focusing on some corner outfielders.

Scrap Irony
05-18-2009, 03:53 PM
See, I see it as three guys had to overperform at HOF standards to offset one historically poor CF and allow the CF position to be one of decent production. That Taveras is outperforming that is pretty darn cool, so far.

I do realize it's early, etc., and I also think Taveras is likely to turn into a pumpkin at some point. I also think his pumpkin isn't nearly the size of Patterson's last season, but that discussion's been discussed, as it were, and doesn't need new legs.

TRF
05-18-2009, 03:56 PM
oh, he's turning alright. Not impressed with his defense either. scares the crap out of me every time he breaks back then sprints forward at full speed.

the series against the Padres didn't help. woeful performance at the plate.

SMcGavin
05-18-2009, 04:59 PM
2008 Reds CF
76.79 RC per 700 PA's

2009 Reds CF
89.8 RC per 700 PA's.

2009 Willy Taveras: 95.5 RC per 700 PAs (or 5.4 RC/G)
2009 NL average: 5.1 RC/G

I didn't like the signing either but it is working so far.

TheNext44
05-18-2009, 05:01 PM
oh, he's turning alright. Not impressed with his defense either. scares the crap out of me every time he breaks back then sprints forward at full speed.

the series against the Padres didn't help. woeful performance at the plate.

It will be interesting how he responds to his woeful performance in SD. It seemed like he started to believe his own press clippings, and instead of being a patient hitter, he was swinging at everything. That was Patterson's problem, and if Taveras keeps this up, it could get ugly.

mth123
05-18-2009, 09:56 PM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010). By next week at this time, The Memorial Day checkpoint, Dickerson may still have outperformed Willy.

Ron Madden
05-19-2009, 02:59 AM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010).

That's been my whole argument all along.

I hope Taveras proves me wrong but I wouldn't bet on it.

Falls City Beer
05-19-2009, 08:03 AM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010). By next week at this time, The Memorial Day checkpoint, Dickerson may still have outperformed Willy.

Speaking for myself, I don't think Dickerson's been awful. I've liked his patience so far and have been anticipating some luck to turn for the guy. I don't think he's a good option defensively in CF, nor is he an everyday starting LF, but he's very handy guy to have around, and I'd be angry if the Reds sent him down.

Not sure how that changes the fact that Taveras has so far been worth his contract.

edabbs44
05-19-2009, 08:08 AM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010). By next week at this time, The Memorial Day checkpoint, Dickerson may still have outperformed Willy.

Probably because the sample sizes are still small and numbers are prone to wild swings.

On May 11, Taveras' OPS sat at .795 and Dickerson's was .604. One week ago, those statements were pretty accurate.

SMcGavin
05-19-2009, 08:54 AM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010). By next week at this time, The Memorial Day checkpoint, Dickerson may still have outperformed Willy.

It's really hard to make the case that a CF who is above the league average in Runs Created has been "awful". Trying to evalute Taveras with OPS is completely missing the picture. Re: Willy vs Dickerson, batting average isn't the greatest stat in the world but when the OBP is identical, the guy with 60 points higher BA is obviously playing better. Then consider Taveras at 10 SB, 1 CS and Dickerson at 0 SB, 2 CS and you see why Willy is about a full run higher in RC/G.

REDREAD
05-19-2009, 11:42 PM
That I will never understand. There is no way that he has such a great year this year that he would get much more than $4M arbitration next year, and the risk was too good that he would have a bad year and deserve a lot less, or even get cut.

It might work out a little bit, but at the time, it was not a wise decision.

If the Reds didn't give Wily two years, he probably signs elsewhere.

Walt really didn't have time to wait Wily out. He knew the Reds desperately needed a CF and Wily was the only FA CF in our price range.

Even with Wily's recent slump, his contract is still a good one, even with 2 years.

But let's say we gave Wily a one year, 3 million dollar deal instead of 2 years at 6.. then we go to arb with him. Wily might hit .280, score 100 runs, play good defense and steal 60+ bases. That's reasonable. Those are pretty good numbers to take to arb. After this season, I think Wily has enough service time to compare himself with all players as peers. Given some of the really bad CF contracts out there recently, I think Wily may have won more in arb.. It would make me uncomfortable to go to arb with him.

REDREAD
05-19-2009, 11:51 PM
As of now:

Taveras: .293/.351/.376/.727
Dickerson: .230/.356/.365/.721

OBP and OPS nearly identical. Everyone says Taveras has been good and Dickerson has been awful. I think they've both been awful. Its just that Willy has surpassed expectations while Dickerson has fallen short of expectations (but the Reds aren't on the hook for $4 Million to Dickerson in 2010). By next week at this time, The Memorial Day checkpoint, Dickerson may still have outperformed Willy.


63 points of batting average is significant. Taveras has almost double the ABs138 ABs, Dickerson only 74. (which means Dickerson could be better or worse).

Dickerson's OBP and OBP is just floating by 15 walks. Not to mention Dickerson's defense has been putrid.

Ron Madden
05-20-2009, 03:08 AM
63 points of batting average is significant. Taveras has almost double the ABs138 ABs, Dickerson only 74. (which means Dickerson could be better or worse).

Dickerson's OBP and OBP is just floating by 15 walks. Not to mention Dickerson's defense has been putrid.

Look at the differece in what WT and CD are being paid.

This is nothing more than an honest question, Is WT that much better?

.

mth123
05-20-2009, 04:18 AM
Probably because the sample sizes are still small and numbers are prone to wild swings.

On May 11, Taveras' OPS sat at .795 and Dickerson's was .604. One week ago, those statements were pretty accurate.

I agree about the small sample sizes. It was the entire point really. Judging a guy on a hot or cold streak by his numbers this early in the season seems nutty. I still think Willy is who we all thought he was and that was a guy not worth signing.

Ltlabner
05-20-2009, 07:00 AM
Wily might hit .280, score 100 runs, play good defense and steal 60+ bases. That's reasonable.

Except that it isn't.

He's hit .280+ two years out of four.

He's never exceeded 85 runs

He's stolen 60+ bases once out of four years.

He's exceeded .350 OBP once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

His EqA has been league average (.260) once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

So no, your scenario isn't "reasonable".

nate
05-20-2009, 09:24 AM
Interestingly, before Willy's current 0-17 streak, he'd gotten a hit in 14 straight games.

TRF
05-20-2009, 09:56 AM
If the Reds didn't give Wily two years, he probably signs elsewhere.

Walt really didn't have time to wait Wily out. He knew the Reds desperately needed a CF and Wily was the only FA CF in our price range.

Even with Wily's recent slump, his contract is still a good one, even with 2 years.

But let's say we gave Wily a one year, 3 million dollar deal instead of 2 years at 6.. then we go to arb with him. Wily might hit .280, score 100 runs, play good defense and steal 60+ bases. That's reasonable. Those are pretty good numbers to take to arb. After this season, I think Wily has enough service time to compare himself with all players as peers. Given some of the really bad CF contracts out there recently, I think Wily may have won more in arb.. It would make me uncomfortable to go to arb with him.

Aside from the fact that your "reasonable scenario" has already been refuted, what makes you think the Reds would offer him arbitration? And if so, why would he accept?

Say he indeed does all that you say, that's an immensely valuable commodity, but for the Reds, one that could be replaced in house. At this point, Stubbs (yeah, never been a fan, but never doubted his "D") is tearing up AAA. Since you presented a "scenario", I'll counter with Stubbs AND Heisey continue to dominate as hitters, with Heisey being promoted to AAA in June, and continues his torrid start there. That gives the Reds two in-house options making the league minimum.

Now if the Reds were to offer arb, it would more likely be with the understanding that WT refuse. If he did what you suggest, something he's never come close to in his MLB career, he'd be at the top of every team's list looking for a leadoff hitter. He'd get a minimum of 3 years/15 mil. MINIMUM. That's more than the Reds would/should offer him.

REDREAD, I've been with you far more than against, but you are dead wrong about Taveras, his upside, and especially his value to this team.

At least in my opinion.

REDREAD
05-20-2009, 09:59 AM
Look at the differece in what WT and CD are being paid.

This is nothing more than an honest question, Is WT that much better?

.


Yes, it's worth it.

In the offseason, the only OF spot the team was comfortable with was RF.
Redszone was comfortable with Dickerson, and Walt wasn't (for good reason).

Tavares has been an above average CF so far. Even if Dickerson OPSed 1.000 this season, it would still be a great move, because that fills both LF and CF.

Someone had a good point on this thread. Although Dickerson has been disappointing, he's a useful reserve player. It's not as if he's been buried in AAA. Depth is a good thing to have. Tavares is definitely earning his 3 million.

Now if Taveres was making 10 million/year, I could see people agonizing over his salary.. But we have guys like Phillips, Cordero and Arroyo that are making a lot more money.. their salaries are seldom brought up. Occasionally, yes..
but not nearly to the extent of Tavares. Heck, Tavares is making less than Weathers. 3 million/year for a FA average CF is a great deal.

REDREAD
05-20-2009, 10:07 AM
Except that it isn't.

He's hit .280+ two years out of four.

He's never exceeded 85 runs

He's stolen 60+ bases once out of four years.

He's exceeded .350 OBP once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

His EqA has been league average (.260) once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

So no, your scenario isn't "reasonable".

We are talking about arbitration though. It doesn't necessarly follow the same logic we do.

Remember Sean Casey's arb hearing a few years ago. His agent said something like Casey was the only player to hit .300 with more than 20 HR other than Arod. That was a key argument (at least according to the press).

The arbitrators are not stat gurus. A .280 BA, 60-80 steals and 100 runs scored can be painted to make Wily an elite CF. That's the whole reason why the Rockies DFAed him. They did not want to go to arbitration with Wily.

By the same reaosn, if Wily continues to play at that level, I would not want the Reds to go to arb with him. He can compare himself to all CF this offseason. He can bring up the big contracts that Goodwin, Andruw Jones, Gary Matthews, Tori Hunter, etc have gotten. He's a lock to win over 4 million in arb.. That is the point. I'm glad the Reds have him locked in for 4 million, vs going to arb with him.

TRF
05-20-2009, 10:20 AM
We are talking about arbitration though. It doesn't necessarly follow the same logic we do.

Remember Sean Casey's arb hearing a few years ago. His agent said something like Casey was the only player to hit .300 with more than 20 HR other than Arod. That was a key argument (at least according to the press).

The arbitrators are not stat gurus. A .280 BA, 60-80 steals and 100 runs scored can be painted to make Wily an elite CF. That's the whole reason why the Rockies DFAed him. They did not want to go to arbitration with Wily.

By the same reaosn, if Wily continues to play at that level, I would not want the Reds to go to arb with him. He can compare himself to all CF this offseason. He can bring up the big contracts that Goodwin, Andruw Jones, Gary Matthews, Tori Hunter, etc have gotten. He's a lock to win over 4 million in arb.. That is the point. I'm glad the Reds have him locked in for 4 million, vs going to arb with him.

He... has... never... done... this.

Why do magically think he will now?

BRM
05-20-2009, 10:54 AM
You mean the Rockies didn't DFA him because of this? .251/.308/.296

That was his line in his final season there.

nate
05-20-2009, 11:22 AM
A .280 BA, 60-80 steals and 100 runs scored can be painted to make Wily an elite CF.

If Willy does that, he will have eclipsed his career averages by 10 in the counting stats and maintained his BA. Because the counting stats would be so high, it's likely that he actually played a good 150 games (which would be above his career average number). If he does that, great!

But let him do it first.

Whether that makes him an "elite" CF, I don't know. Probably not. Would he and his agent make that case in arbitration? Probably.

westofyou
05-20-2009, 11:25 AM
But let him do it first.

Whether that makes him an "elite" CF, I don't know. Probably not. Would he and his agent make that case in arbitration? Probably.

Of course IF he does do it then he'll only be the 5th guy to have done it... but the 2nd Red.


SEASON
MODERN (1900-)
RUNS >= 100
STOLEN BASES BETWEEN 60 AND 80
AVERAGE BETWEEN .270 AND .280

OPS YEAR OPS R SB AVG
1 Rickey Henderson 1989 .810 113 77 .274
2 Bob Bescher 1911 .753 106 80 .275
3 Juan Samuel 1984 .749 105 72 .272
4 Tony Womack 1999 .702 111 72 .277

M2
05-20-2009, 11:26 AM
The Rockies DFAed Taveras because of this:

http://www.jlauthentics.com/Dexter%20Fowler.jpg

nate
05-20-2009, 11:27 AM
Of course IF he does do it then he'll only be the 5th guy to have done it... but the 2nd Red.


SEASON
MODERN (1900-)
RUNS >= 100
STOLEN BASES BETWEEN 60 AND 80
AVERAGE BETWEEN .270 AND .280

OPS YEAR OPS R SB AVG
1 Rickey Henderson 1989 .810 113 77 .274
2 Bob Bescher 1911 .753 106 80 .275
3 Juan Samuel 1984 .749 105 72 .272
4 Tony Womack 1999 .702 111 72 .277


So you're saying him and his agent wouldn't have needed a paintbrush at the arbitration hearing?

Big Klu
05-20-2009, 05:10 PM
Of course IF he does do it then he'll only be the 5th guy to have done it... but the 2nd Red.


SEASON
MODERN (1900-)
RUNS >= 100
STOLEN BASES BETWEEN 60 AND 80
AVERAGE BETWEEN .270 AND .280

OPS YEAR OPS R SB AVG
1 Rickey Henderson 1989 .810 113 77 .274
2 Bob Bescher 1911 .753 106 80 .275
3 Juan Samuel 1984 .749 105 72 .272
4 Tony Womack 1999 .702 111 72 .277


Three of the four played for the Reds at some point in their careers, though.

Ltlabner
05-20-2009, 06:31 PM
We are talking about arbitration though. It doesn't necessarly follow the same logic we do.

That's dandy but it has nothing to do with your assertion that Willy T' producing those numbers as being "reasonable".

It clearly is not, so any discussion regarding what might happen in arbitration that starts at your definition of "reasonable" is pretty much useless. Might as well say, "If Willy Taveras wins American Idol, swims the Pacific Ocean, gives up baseball for the priesthood and becomes a light skinned white woman this year, that's reasonable. So in arbitration........"

Sea Ray
05-20-2009, 07:58 PM
Of course IF he does do it then he'll only be the 5th guy to have done it... but the 2nd Red.


SEASON
MODERN (1900-)
RUNS >= 100
STOLEN BASES BETWEEN 60 AND 80
AVERAGE BETWEEN .270 AND .280

OPS YEAR OPS R SB AVG
1 Rickey Henderson 1989 .810 113 77 .274
2 Bob Bescher 1911 .753 106 80 .275
3 Juan Samuel 1984 .749 105 72 .272
4 Tony Womack 1999 .702 111 72 .277



Yes, but the way you sorted it makes it look awfully rare. My guess is if you sorted the BA and stolen bases to infinity like you did the runs scored the list would be much higher. Capping the avg at .280 and stolen bases at 80 makes for a very sparsely populated list.

edabbs44
05-20-2009, 09:46 PM
Except that it isn't.

He's hit .280+ two years out of four.

He's never exceeded 85 runs

He's stolen 60+ bases once out of four years.

He's exceeded .350 OBP once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

His EqA has been league average (.260) once in four years (due to smaller sample size)

So no, your scenario isn't "reasonable".

This is pretty unfair.

He has hit .280 in 50% of his seasons.

He also stole 60 bases in his most recent season. He is on pace for 46 this year while ramping up the SBs this month, so it would be fair to say that he could reach 60 this year if the trend continues.

Runs are very team dependent, so while 85 is his career high he could also (with a little bit of luck) score 100. He is on pace for 110 right now. If Votto can get back on the field then this has a better shot at happening.

Maybe it isn't probable, but it is definitely "not excessive or extreme", which does fit the definition of reasonable.

Ltlabner
05-20-2009, 11:43 PM
This is pretty unfair.

He has hit .280 in 50% of his seasons.

He also stole 60 bases in his most recent season. He is on pace for 46 this year while ramping up the SBs this month, so it would be fair to say that he could reach 60 this year if the trend continues.

Runs are very team dependent, so while 85 is his career high he could also (with a little bit of luck) score 100. He is on pace for 110 right now. If Votto can get back on the field then this has a better shot at happening.

Maybe it isn't probable, but it is definitely "not excessive or extreme", which does fit the definition of reasonable.

Your version of what is "possible" is why Las Vegas drains all the suckers of the kids college funds and the mortgage payment and send them home to the little lady and bank auditors.

Redread was trying to make the case that it was reasonable to believe Willy T would suddenly be able to do something he's never done before. Ever. He's never done what Redread suggested was reasonable in the same season. The history clearly shows that this is not "reasonable" at all. Willy would have produce in ways he never has and there's no evidence to suggest he'll be doing that at all.

By the way he was never able to score over 85 runs (83 is carer high) as the lead off hitter on two world series contending teams. I'm going to suggest that it's going to take more than "luck" for him to reach 100 at the front of this powerhouse lineup.

TheNext44
05-21-2009, 12:31 AM
Your version of what is "possible" is why Las Vegas drains all the suckers of the kids college funds and the mortgage payment and send them home to the little lady and bank auditors.

Redread was trying to make the case that it was reasonable to believe Willy T would suddenly be able to do something he's never done before. Ever. He's never done what Redread suggested was reasonable in the same season. The history clearly shows that this is not "reasonable" at all. Willy would have produce in ways he never has and there's no evidence to suggest he'll be doing that at all.

By the way he was never able to score over 85 runs (83 is carer high) as the lead off hitter on two world series contending teams. I'm going to suggest that it's going to take more than "luck" for him to reach 100 at the front of this powerhouse lineup.

Personally, I think that Taveras will finish 09 with numbers close to his career numbers, maybe a tad better, which is nothing to get excited about. I agree with you on your assessment of what he probably will accomplish.

However, the very fact that he has not hit .280, stolen 60+ bases and scored 100 runs in one season, logically, is why it is reasonable to think that he might this season.

He most likely will hit near .280, as he has hit at least .278 three out his four years in the majors. I have no idea if he will steal 60 bases, I'm guessing most likely closer to 35, but if he were to steal 60+ bases and hit .280, he will most likely score close to 100 runs.

He scored 82 and 83 runs in his first two seasons, when he hit .280, had an OBP of around .325 and stole around 35 bases. If he were to keep his his average and this his OBP at .280 and add 25 more stolen bases, it is logical to assume that he will score around 8-12 more runs, or around 90-95.

Again, I don't think he will do that, since I really don't see him stealing 60 bases this season, but if he were to do the first two in one season, he would logically do the third, or very close to it.

kaldaniels
05-21-2009, 12:43 AM
Look at the differece in what WT and CD are being paid.

This is nothing more than an honest question, Is WT that much better?

.

With WT, he has a track record, and as with any post-arb player, you have a decent idea of what you are going to get.

No one, and I repeat no one, can be for certain what numbers CD would put up over a 162 game season. Could be a lot better than Willy, yet they could be terrible once the book is out on CD.

So sure, Willy T is being paid a premium compared to CD. However, anyone with a non-jaded view on the big picture should see that this is the least of the Reds worrys at this point. It seems the argument is being made that CD is equal to WT (and again, that is not a proven thing right now)...but in the big picture is 2-3 million all that meaningful?

Bigger fish to fry folks.

Kc61
05-21-2009, 01:21 AM
If Wily T can be more selective and avoid too many popups caused by uppercutting, I think he can substantially improve his BA and OBP numbers. I don't think his power numbers will improve at this point, they could get better later in his career if he fills out more.

I've never believed that a player is limited by his career stats. Sometimes coaching, maturation, avoiding injuries, and working on particular tendencies can make a lot of difference.

If career stats were determinative, Hairston could never have had the kind of year in 2008 that he did have. We'll see if it was a fluke, but even if it was - it happened and he contributed to the ballclub.

I'm not predicting Taveras' numbers for this year. But I don't know how anyone can say what his BA or OBP will be unless they have an intense knowledge of the player and of the Reds' program for him. IMO the Reds thought he could improve when they acquired Wily T and he probably can.

And by the way, the Reds were right when they said WT is a plus on defense. The various defensive measures show him as a high echelon CF, at least so far this year. They may be right about his offensive potential as well.

Ron Madden
05-21-2009, 03:27 AM
Yes, it's worth it.

In the offseason, the only OF spot the team was comfortable with was RF.
Redszone was comfortable with Dickerson, and Walt wasn't (for good reason).

Tavares has been an above average CF so far. Even if Dickerson OPSed 1.000 this season, it would still be a great move, because that fills both LF and CF.



Someone had a good point on this thread. Although Dickerson has been disappointing, he's a useful reserve player. It's not as if he's been buried in AAA. Depth is a good thing to have. Tavares is definitely earning his 3 million

Now if Taveres was making 10 million/year, I could see people agonizing over his salary.. But we have guys like Phillips, Cordero and Arroyo that are making a lot more money.. their salaries are seldom brought up. Occasionally, yes..
but not nearly to the extent of Tavares. Heck, Tavares is making less than Weathers. 3 million/year for a FA average CF is a great deal.

This offseason the Reds needed to aquire a power bat to play LF and to improve their options at SS.

I believe it's too early to say Dickerson has been a disappointment. Dickerson, Bruce or Hairston can play CF as well as Taveras can.

What bothers me is the money spent on Taveras, Weathers and Lincoln could have went towards a power bat to play LF and a better option at SS.

Ron Madden
05-21-2009, 04:00 AM
With WT, he has a track record, and as with any post-arb player, you have a decent idea of what you are going to get.

No one, and I repeat no one, can be for certain what numbers CD would put up over a 162 game season. Could be a lot better than Willy, yet they could be terrible once the book is out on CD.

So sure, Willy T is being paid a premium compared to CD. However, anyone with a non-jaded view on the big picture should see that this is the least of the Reds worrys at this point. It seems the argument is being made that CD is equal to WT (and again, that is not a proven thing right now)...but in the big picture is 2-3 million all that meaningful?

Bigger fish to fry folks.

Yes, Willie Taveras has a track record and that's what scares me.

Nobody knows anything for certain.

We can see what Taveras has done in the past and pretty much expect more of the same in the future.

I'm not some evil hermit sitting here sticking pins in a Willie Taveras voodoo doll. I want him to do well as much as you do.

.

redsmetz
05-21-2009, 05:27 AM
Yes, Willie Taveras has a track record and that's what scares me.

Nobody knows anything for certain.

We can see what Taveras has done in the past and pretty much expect more of the same in the future.

I'm not some evil hermit sitting here sticking pins in a Willie Taveras voodoo doll. I want him to do well as much as you do.

.

While prior statistics MAY indicate what will happen in the future, a player is NEVER locked into that. Statistics are not a predetermination of what will actually happen. That is the basic flaw, IMO, of statements such as your's. It's just not true. It could well be that we're witnessing the oft mentioned "career year" (which can never be fully recognized in the midst of said career). It also could be that we're seeing a player who finally "gets it." Or, it could be that he will revert to what his career norms have been thus far. But we can't unequivocally "pretty much expect more of the same."

jojo
05-21-2009, 07:41 AM
While prior statistics MAY indicate what will happen in the future, a player is NEVER locked into that. Statistics are not a predetermination of what will actually happen. That is the basic flaw, IMO, of statements such as your's. It's just not true. It could well be that we're witnessing the oft mentioned "career year" (which can never be fully recognized in the midst of said career). It also could be that we're seeing a player who finally "gets it." Or, it could be that he will revert to what his career norms have been thus far. But we can't unequivocally "pretty much expect more of the same."

Expectations for a player's performance should be colored by a reasonable estimate of the player's true skill level. A BA of .280 seems not only possible but reasonable. The stolen bases and runs scored are much bigger hurdles IMHO.

redsmetz
05-21-2009, 07:55 AM
Expectations for a player's performance should be colored by a reasonable estimate of the player's true skill level. A BA of .280 seems not only possible but reasonable. The stolen bases and runs scored are much bigger hurdles IMHO.

I don't disagree with that at all. That leaves room for the fact that something may click and cause improvement, while recognizing the limitations the players previous stats indicate.

As for stolen bases, I got to the game late, so I didn't see Taveras' first time on base, but I gather from a comment behind me that Taveras was picked off, but a balk was called. I did see him get picked off and thrown out stealing later in the game. I wonder if he has previously just gotten by on his speed alone and if it wouldn't do him wonders to work with someone like a someone who was a stealing whiz to help him get better leads and better reads on pitchers. Just a thought.

edabbs44
05-21-2009, 08:03 AM
Your version of what is "possible" is why Las Vegas drains all the suckers of the kids college funds and the mortgage payment and send them home to the little lady and bank auditors.

Not at all. Those things (minus the runs scored) have happened in the past. There is no reason why he wouldn't be able to do them all in one season. None whatsoever. Just because he hasn't done them all in one season doesn't mean it isn't possible. If that is so, then that means Edwin will never hit over 16 HRs and over .251 in the same season for the rest of his career.

Do you think that the statement above is accurate?


Redread was trying to make the case that it was reasonable to believe Willy T would suddenly be able to do something he's never done before. Ever. He's never done what Redread suggested was reasonable in the same season. The history clearly shows that this is not "reasonable" at all. Willy would have produce in ways he never has and there's no evidence to suggest he'll be doing that at all.

Again, Willy has done the things that Redread has suggested (minus runs scored), just not in one year. Why wouldn't he be able to do all of these things in one season? If your answer is b/c he has never done them all in one season, then that is a bogus response.


By the way he was never able to score over 85 runs (83 is carer high) as the lead off hitter on two world series contending teams. I'm going to suggest that it's going to take more than "luck" for him to reach 100 at the front of this powerhouse lineup.

The fact that "runs scored" is a team dependent stat has been beaten into all of us around here. It is more than possible for him to improve in that category. Why can't he score 100 runs this year?

If this is so, then someone better tell the stat keepers that Jhonny Peralta couldn't have scored 104 runs last season since it never happened before.


Your WT bias is showing.

Falls City Beer
05-21-2009, 08:07 AM
I don't understand why it's such a big deal to just say that so far Taveras has been an asset to the team. And not a terribly expensive one. They're paying Arroyo 10 mill to post 6 + ERA and FIP. But Taveras is the target?

Sea Ray
05-21-2009, 08:21 AM
I don't disagree with that at all. That leaves room for the fact that something may click and cause improvement, while recognizing the limitations the players previous stats indicate.

As for stolen bases, I got to the game late, so I didn't see Taveras' first time on base, but I gather from a comment behind me that Taveras was picked off, but a balk was called. I did see him get picked off and thrown out stealing later in the game. I wonder if he has previously just gotten by on his speed alone and if it wouldn't do him wonders to work with someone like a someone who was a stealing whiz to help him get better leads and better reads on pitchers. Just a thought.

The pickoff was a bad call by the 2nd base umpire. He was in before the tag.

In Spring training Chris Welsh was raving about what a student Willy is at the art of stealing bases. He was very impressed with how much study he put into his craft of base stealing

Ltlabner
05-21-2009, 08:38 AM
While prior statistics MAY indicate what will happen in the future, a player is NEVER locked into that.

Of course not, but past performance is also a road-map to the probability of a players future performance. That's all we're talking about here...the probability that WT does all the things RR suggested in a single season.

The probability is so high that I don't think it's "reasonable" to assume WT can do those things.


The fact that "runs scored" is a team dependent stat has been beaten into all of us around here. It is more than possible for him to improve in that category. Why can't he score 100 runs this year?

I know it's confusing, but runs being team dependent is exactly the point I was making. If you can't score 100 in-front of the offenses of two WS teams the chances of it happening in front of this one are much lower.


Your WT bias is showing.

No, I'm talking about probability and how reasonable it is for WT to do the things RR suggested were reasonable.

Has he done some of those things (.280BA and 60SB) before? Yes. Has he done all three? No (100 runs). Is the 100 runs something in his control? As you were so excited to point out, no. Scoring 100 runs depends on his teammates meaning the probability of it happening goes down. Has he ever done all three in a single season? No. Has he at least done the .280BA and 60SB regularly enough to assume he can produce at those levels again with ease? No. 50% of the time he hasn't hit .280 and 75% of the time he hasn't stolen 60 baes. Thus, based on all of these data points, it's reasonable to conclude that the probability of WT doing a .280/60/100 is low enough to be considered "unreasonable" to assume he can do it this year.

All we're talking about here is probability. Can WT have a carer year and do a .280/60/100. Sure. Of course. Doesn't mean it's "reasonable", "probable" or "likely" as was originally proposed.

edabbs44
05-21-2009, 08:55 AM
I know it's confusing, but runs being team dependent is exactly the point I was making. If you can't score 100 in-front of the offenses of two WS teams the chances of it happening in front of this one are much lower.

Not confusing, but thanks for being so condescending.

You can make a general statement like that and ignore the facts that actually matter in this thread, like how this Reds team is on pace to score more than the 2005 Astros. That's your prerogative.


Has he done some of those things (.280BA and 60SB) before? Yes. Has he done all three? No (100 runs). Is the 100 runs something in his control? As you were so excited to point out, no. Scoring 100 runs depends on his teammates meaning the probability of it happening goes down. Has he ever done all three in a single season? No. Thus, it is reasonable to conclude the probability of it happening is lower than if he had done it once (preferably several times) previously in his carer.

Agreed on the SBs and avg, but the runs part doesn't really matter. If he remains at the top of the order and continues doing what he is doing, then he will get in the neighborhood of 100 runs. As you state, that number is based on his teammates as well and since you think that Taveras is the worst, that fact should then up the probability and not lessen it.


All we're talking about here is probability. Can WT have a carer year and do a .280/60/100. Sure. Of course. Doesn't mean it's "reasonable", "probable" or "likely" as was originally proposed.

We may have a different definition of the word. Reasonable does not mean "likely" or "probable". It means "not extreme or excessive". Huge difference.

Ltlabner
05-21-2009, 09:14 AM
You can make a general statement like that and ignore the facts that actually matter in this thread, like how this Reds team is on pace to score more than the 2005 Astros. That's your prerogative.

You realize that the "pace" you're talking about is based on 6 or so whole entire weeks of data so it's not a real accurate prediction right?

And that 6 weeks of data includes a monster start by Joey Votto right? So that tends to skew things a bit.

And that Joey Votto is (1) not guaranteed to continue to produce like that and (2) is not playing right now?

When they are "on pace" to do something in mid-August, then I'll be interested. Otherwise, the guy who goes 4 for 4 on opening day is "on pace" to hit 1.000 for the season.


We may have a different definition of the word. Reasonable does not mean "likely" or "probable". It means "not extreme or excessive". Huge difference.

If you want to argue over the details between the differences between being extreme, being excessive, being likely, being probable and being reasonable you'll have to find a new dance partner. I'm not in the mood to be sucked into a vortex today.

edabbs44
05-21-2009, 10:03 AM
You realize that the "pace" you're talking about is based on 6 or so whole entire weeks of data so it's not a real accurate prediction right?

And that 6 weeks of data includes a monster start by Joey Votto right? So that tends to skew things a bit.

And that Joey Votto is (1) not guaranteed to continue to produce like that and (2) is not playing right now?

When they are "on pace" to do something in mid-August, then I'll be interested. Otherwise, the guy who goes 4 for 4 on opening day is "on pace" to hit 1.000 for the season.

The pace is also based on Phillips (for most of the period) and Encarnacion playing like trash. Bottom line is that we are talking about runs being scored and you are talking about WS teams. The two, while somewhat related, aren't exactly the same.


If you want to argue over the details between the differences between being extreme, being excessive, being likely, being probable and being reasonable you'll have to find a new dance partner. I'm not in the mood to be sucked into a vortex today.

I know it is somewhat confusing, but responding to a post when you have the wrong impression of what a key word in that post means can be an issue.

Scrap Irony
05-21-2009, 10:21 AM
So then, if this is true, by your reasoning:
EdE is a 789 OPS hitter with a 953 fielding percentage
Brandon Phillips is due for a .262/ .310/ .428/ .738 line
Jay Bruce's line will be .249/.312/.470/.782 for his career

Probability is not only defined by past numbers, but by ceiling. I know we argued ceiling last time we talked about Taveras, but it still holds true. Taveras-- like Phillips, Encarnacion, and Bruce-- has shown either a propensity for season-long success in certain areas or minor league numbers that show he could "get it" in his age-prime seasons.

Is it likely he will?

I doubt it.

Is it reasonable? Depends on how you define reasonable. It's certainly reasonable that he hit .280+. He's done it half the time he's been in the league.

Same thing with SB's. Basestealers can take a few years to really hit their peak. (Look at Lou Brock, Omar Moreno, and Maury Wills for examples, of many.) As he matures, he can steal 60. In the minors, he hit mid 50's despite averaging 101 games a season.

The runs are almost entirely team dependent.


I'm not saying he's good. I'm not saying I like the acquisition, but it is reasonable to expect improvement enough in batting average and stolen bases to a 280/60 level over the next two seasons. The runs, OTOH, shouldn't count.

Edit: Hey, you answered most of my post responding to Edabbs, so, um, nevermind... I see that the 100 runs thing is what you're hanging improbable or "unreasonable" on and I agree. So I'll leave it alone.

TRF
05-21-2009, 10:35 AM
In regards to SB's, the season to look at is not 2008, but rather 2007. 33 SB's, in line with his career norms, but in only 97 games. I'm no fan of WT's, but something clicked in 2007 for him in his approach to stealing. just pointing this out for fairness.

IMO THE ONLY way WT can be successful is by bunting as often as possible, at least once a game. He has to put that in the defenders minds, drawing them in. It's the only way to maintain a high enough BA to offset his lack of BB's

100 SB's? he can forget that prediction. 60? ESPN has him projected for 48 with 9 CS. I don't think that offsets his weak SLG enough.

bucksfan2
05-21-2009, 10:51 AM
In regards to SB's, the season to look at is not 2008, but rather 2007. 33 SB's, in line with his career norms, but in only 97 games. I'm no fan of WT's, but something clicked in 2007 for him in his approach to stealing. just pointing this out for fairness.

IMO THE ONLY way WT can be successful is by bunting as often as possible, at least once a game. He has to put that in the defenders minds, drawing them in. It's the only way to maintain a high enough BA to offset his lack of BB's

100 SB's? he can forget that prediction. 60? ESPN has him projected for 48 with 9 CS. I don't think that offsets his weak SLG enough.

WT's value to the team is how often he gets on base. It has been pretty evident over the past 10 games that when WT gets on base, the Reds win, when he doesn't get on base the Reds struggle. To be quite honest, I don't give a damn about SLG with Taveras. He isn't going to put up a big SLG average. That isn't his game and to expect anything else is just off base.

It is fairly evident that when WT gets on base he is one heck of a base runner. He knows what he is doing. Its fun watching someone on first base who knows what he is doing. WT gets a big enough lead to make the pitcher think twice. Every lead is big enough in order to dive back to the outside corner of the bag in time safely. After each pick off throw he extends his lead and gets into the pitchers head. Even though his SB numbers are down I believe that he is a big distraction for pitchers when he is on base.

As for run scored numbers it is a team stat, but you also have to give some credit to WT. His abilities on the the base path can be a huge asset to the Reds. The key question was, and will continue to be how often he gets on base.

TRF
05-21-2009, 10:54 AM
As I stated, he needs a high BA to offset his lack of BB's. the value of his SB's has been debated ad nauseum. 85% and he's an asset, especially with the quantity of SB's he COULD rack up. under that and he's running into outs and hurting the team regardless of the quantity.

REDREAD
05-21-2009, 03:37 PM
That's dandy but it has nothing to do with your assertion that Willy T' producing those numbers as being "reasonable".

......"

Which do you think Wily will fail to do:
Hit 280
Steal 60+ bases
Score 100 runs

I think he's got a reasonable shot to hit all those goals, which one do you think is not reasonable? I agree, he may miss all of them, but he's got a decent chance of meeting those goals.

REDREAD
05-21-2009, 03:42 PM
Your version of what is "possible" is why Las Vegas drains all the suckers of the kids college funds and the mortgage payment and send them home to the little lady and bank auditors.

Redread was trying to make the case that it was reasonable to believe Willy T would suddenly be able to do something he's never done before. Ever. He's never done what Redread suggested was reasonable in the same season. .

And this is why Walt is the GM, and you aren't.

Walt was somehow able to figure out that Wily could actually get better this season. Maybe he won't hit the milestones I mentioned, but he's clearly improved (so far, at least). Maybe he'll crash down to earth.. If he does, I'm sure you'll be around to gloat about it.

REDREAD
05-21-2009, 03:47 PM
This offseason the Reds needed to aquire a power bat to play LF and to improve their options at SS.

I believe it's too early to say Dickerson has been a disappointment. Dickerson, Bruce or Hairston can play CF as well as Taveras can.

What bothers me is the money spent on Taveras, Weathers and Lincoln could have went towards a power bat to play LF and a better option at SS.

The problem is there weren't any FA LF or SS that were good and in the Reds price range.

Abreu probably wasn't going to come here for less than 10 million.. Ok, you pay him that for one year, and he's gone the next. Not really sure that is progress, considering you'd be stuck with Dickerson/McDonald in CF and a thin bullpen.

I really don't remember a lot of cries about Lincoln's contract when he was resigned. It was about on par with the Rhodes contract, a little bit of concern, but not too much. It's easy in hindsight to pick the right relievers, but at the time, Rhodes seemed about as risky as Lincoln.

jojo
05-21-2009, 03:55 PM
And this is why Walt is the GM, and you aren't.

Walt was somehow able to figure out that Wily could actually get better this season. Maybe he won't hit the milestones I mentioned, but he's clearly improved (so far, at least). Maybe he'll crash down to earth.. If he does, I'm sure you'll be around to gloat about it.

This is NOT intended to be taken personally but I'm sorry, this post misses the mark on several levels.

The gloating comment just isn't needed IMHO.

But the real issue concerns the notions that a) Taveras has clearly taken a step forward concerning his true skill level, and b) Walt signed Taveras anticipating just that.

This just isn't good analysis-141 AB aren't enough to inform any meaningful change in offensive skill. It just isn't.

M2
05-21-2009, 04:21 PM
Walt was somehow able to figure out that Wily could actually get better this season.

Frankly, I'm not seeing where he's gotten any better this season. He's pretty close to his career averages. Some days he's ahead of them, other days he's behind them. He hasn't been awful, but no one should accuse him of being particularly good either. He's got an OPS+ of 80 on a team with an OPS+ of 86.

Falls City Beer
05-21-2009, 04:37 PM
I think Taveras has played up to his contract just fine. And for a team who had no other viable answers to CF (and weren't going to spend more than 3 mill a season on any incoming player), they did okay. He's on pace to score 90-95 runs on a pretty SLG-weak club. He's been a fairly reliably healthy player (barring one season); I think that will do the trick.

It's been slow-going, but what I said at the beginning of the season is happening: the offense is trending towards NL-average; the problem is, so is the pitching. They could hang in with an average offense and excellent pitching; maybe they could hang in with average pitching and an excellent offense, but that's a much longer shot.

Ltlabner
05-21-2009, 04:50 PM
Which do you think Wily will fail to do:
Hit 280
Steal 60+ bases
Score 100 runs

I think he's got a reasonable shot to hit all those goals, which one do you think is not reasonable? I agree, he may miss all of them, but he's got a decent chance of meeting those goals.

Scoring 100 runs is going to the the toughie with this offense. A 20% jump is a tall order.

60 bases I'm a little doubtful of based on his slow start and what I've seen thus far. But of the three goals its the one he's most likely to get, I guess.

The BA's not a walk in the park either. Of the two year's he's exceeded .280 one was because he only had 372 AB's in 92 games. It will depend on two things (1) him staying patient at the plate (2) finding the right mix of bunts/swinging hits

Had you said ".275BA, 40 SB and 90 runs" I'd be far more willing to go along with what you thought was "reasonable".


Walt was somehow able to figure out that Wily could actually get better this season.

Talk to me after 162 games before declaring that Willy's "figured it out". Hopefully he has. I doubt it, but hopefully he has.

TheNext44
05-21-2009, 05:47 PM
Frankly, I'm not seeing where he's gotten any better this season. He's pretty close to his career averages. Some days he's ahead of them, other days he's behind them. He hasn't been awful, but no one should accuse him of being particularly good either. He's got an OPS+ of 80 on a team with an OPS+ of 86.

OPS and OPS+ are not the best judges of a speedy players production for obvious reasons. When you factor in SB's, his RC is, and has been right around league average for most of the season. He is averaging .01 runs created above league average right now. That is a big improvement over his career numbers, which have been around 12 runs below league average each year.

Judging from his PA's this last week, where is is taking less pitches, swing at more pitches outside the zone, making less contact, and hitting more balls in the air, I do see him ending the season with close to his career numbers. But as of right now, his production is better than it has been throughout his career.

TRF
05-21-2009, 06:59 PM
And this is why Walt is the GM, and you aren't.

Walt was somehow able to figure out that Wily could actually get better this season. Maybe he won't hit the milestones I mentioned, but he's clearly improved (so far, at least). Maybe he'll crash down to earth.. If he does, I'm sure you'll be around to gloat about it.


Yeah like you with John Allen.... ad nauseum.

Boss-Hog
05-21-2009, 07:09 PM
If we can't debate topics without them getting personal, the threads will be closed and the offenders removed from the board for a few days.

Topcat
05-22-2009, 02:01 AM
Willy T brings out emotions Boss, but I agree this is a fan based board and should not become a personal attack forum. But ummmmmmmmmmm maybe we should have a personal attack section on the board? :cool:

Ron Madden
05-22-2009, 03:38 AM
While prior statistics MAY indicate what will happen in the future, a player is NEVER locked into that. Statistics are not a predetermination of what will actually happen. That is the basic flaw, IMO, of statements such as your's. It's just not true. It could well be that we're witnessing the oft mentioned "career year" (which can never be fully recognized in the midst of said career). It also could be that we're seeing a player who finally "gets it." Or, it could be that he will revert to what his career norms have been thus far. But we can't unequivocally "pretty much expect more of the same."

Please, go back and read my post again. I said "Nothing is ever certain".

If Marty or The Cowboy were to tell you that most players play to the back of their baseball cards, you would accept it as fact.

I made an honest observation along those same lines.

Everyone of us here at RedsZone are Reds Fans. We all have our opinions. It's all well and good that you are an Optimistic Reds Fan.

Seems to me that most Optimistic Fans like yourself feel the need to seperate and lable other Fans as being Positive, Negative, Old School, or Stat Geek. I just ask that you would please read each post with an open mind.

:beerme:

Ron Madden
05-22-2009, 04:02 AM
The problem is there weren't any FA LF or SS that were good and in the Reds price range.

Abreu probably wasn't going to come here for less than 10 million.. Ok, you pay him that for one year, and he's gone the next. Not really sure that is progress, considering you'd be stuck with Dickerson/McDonald in CF and a thin bullpen.

I really don't remember a lot of cries about Lincoln's contract when he was resigned. It was about on par with the Rhodes contract, a little bit of concern, but not too much. It's easy in hindsight to pick the right relievers, but at the time, Rhodes seemed about as risky as Lincoln.


The Reds are supposed to be a Major League Organization. If they would stop spending so much money on nonproductive players they would be able to acquire or keep productive players.

I never actually cried when the Reds resigned Lincoln, Weathers or signed Rhodes. But I'm on record for disagreeing with those moves when they happend.

We don't really know how Dickerson would have done as the everyday CF/leadoff hitter. If he got everyday playing time his numbers could be worse than Taveras' or they could be better.

;)

REDREAD
05-22-2009, 10:18 AM
This just isn't good analysis-141 AB aren't enough to inform any meaningful change in offensive skill. It just isn't.


yes, I agree. Tavares first 141 AB might just be an illusion.
He might not reach the milestones which I said were reasonable.
The point of listing those milestones were not to predict Wily this season.
The point was, if he did reach those milestones (which is possible, but not a given), he'd get a huge arbitration award.

Therefore, if you think a guy like Wily has the upside to improve, signing him to a 2 year/6 million dollar deal is probably a better idea than a 1 year 3 million dollar deal and going to arb with him in 2010.

Now, it's different for a guy like Nix, Gomes, etc.. Walt obviously didn't see the upside or the need for them as much as Tavares.. thus they get a one year deal.

Note, I agree, it's possible Taveras might come crashing down. There's no guarantees by any means.

[removed comment that might be interpreted as possibly inflamatory]

if Volquez was on pace to pitch 200 innings or EdE was on pace to hit 30 HR, and I said it was reasonable they might reach those milestones and get a big payoff in arbitration (if EdE was going to arb next year, I know he's not).. then I doubt the word "reasonable" would be challenged.. I doubt there's be people claiming those two players had never met the milestone so it was unlikely, etc.

Let's at least wait until Wily crashes before piling on him so much. For now, the signing looks like one of the best moves made by a small market team in the offseason in terms of meeting a need and getting good bang for the buck. Maybe it won't last.. I realize that.

jojo
05-22-2009, 10:24 AM
Plain and simple, there's a lot of Wily hate on this board. Let's at least wait until he crashes before piling on him so much.

I think it's more fear of Willy than hatred for him.

Cincy fans come from a long line of people who have experienced the other shoe dropping. :cool:

We've come to be guarded with our hearts....

REDREAD
05-22-2009, 10:24 AM
Frankly, I'm not seeing where he's gotten any better this season. He's pretty close to his career averages. Some days he's ahead of them, other days he's behind them. He hasn't been awful, but no one should accuse him of being particularly good either. He's got an OPS+ of 80 on a team with an OPS+ of 86.

If you use slugging to judge him, you'll never like him.

Was there a better FA option for CF at 3 million/year avaiable to the Reds?

Sure, I'd like Grady Sizemore better too, but he was not available.

I am extremely thankful Dickerson is not out there in CF every day.

It's much like the catching upgrade. Hernandez and Hannigan aren't all stars, but there's much better than the crap we ran out last year.

It's forward progress.. Hopefully in 2011, we'll have someone better than Wily.

In the meantime, I hope he continues to score runs and get on base at a decent pace. As of today, his OBP is 346.. If I recall correctly, that's pretty darn close to the "average" leadoff hitter and average CF OBP that Raisor posted.

If the Reds could somehow did up an average LF and SS for 3 million/year, they'd be a contender this year.. look at it that way. Taveras has been average or pretty close to average this year. That's a huge upgrade from Dickerson and every CF we've had for years (outside of the partial year of Hamilton).

REDREAD
05-22-2009, 10:29 AM
Scoring 100 runs is going to the the toughie with this offense. A 20% jump is a tall order.

60 bases I'm a little doubtful of based on his slow start and what I've seen thus far. But of the three goals its the one he's most likely to get, I guess.

The BA's not a walk in the park either. Of the two year's he's exceeded .280 one was because he only had 372 AB's in 92 games. It will depend on two things (1) him staying patient at the plate (2) finding the right mix of bunts/swinging hits

Had you said ".275BA, 40 SB and 90 runs" I'd be far more willing to go along with what you thought was "reasonable".
.


I agree that he's not running as much. The steals will be tough.
I guess it depends on the definition of reasonable.. Again, those were just thrown out to illustrate that Wily could get a big arb payday if the Reds had to go to arb with him next year (obviously they don't).

I don't know.. if he is a 275 hitter that scores 90 runs.. Then 280/100 runs is reassonable IMO -- meaning that it's attainable.

The 60 steals is attainable if the Reds decide to cut him loose.. although I agree that he should not run recklessly just for the sake of racking up steals. He should only steal when he feels he's got an exceptional chance of succeeding (which he's been doing so far, IMO).