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OnBaseMachine
06-14-2009, 04:05 PM
Baker on youth, patience and staying above .500
Posted by JohnFay at 6/14/2009 2:10 PM EDT on Cincinnati.com

Dusty Baker was talking about Willy Taveras but it bled into talk about the team in general:

“Sometimes you want it right now,” Baker said. “But sometimes it takes longer than people want to give it. This is where teaching part comes in.
“Everyone wants in first place by five games,” Baker said. “We said this is going to be an ongoing process. Do we want it now? Oh heck, yeah. We have to realize we’re in process of teaching and making guys better. That’s the whole realization of the organization here. We want to do it for the long run. We’ve got a young team and we’re going to be inconsistent. We said that right in the very beginning.

“You don’t like it, but it’s the situation we’re in. We’re not the Yankees with a whole bunch of veteran guys and a few kids.”

“Quite frankly, some of kids aren’t kids. They’re inexperienced as far as the big leagues. In reality, Jay Bruce and (Johnny) Cueto are the only real kids.”

“You have a bunch 26 to 28 year olds who don’t have much big league experience.”

It was pointed out that the Reds drafted eight players older than Bruce this week.

“Bruce is playing with all upper classmen,” Baker said. “By the time his graduating class gets here, he’ll have four or five years of big league failures and successes. That’s when he’ll really blossom – when they can’t trick him anymore.”

“Patience is hard to sell,” Baker said. “It’s something I need continue to be. Stay with the long-term plan. But we need short-term success to satisfy me and everyone esle.”

Baker know the Reds coudl be buried in the standing rather than 2 1/2 games out.

"If Everyone else wasn't losing . . . We're fortunate to be where we are (in the standings). That's why today’s game is big.” Baker said. “We fought and fought to get to .500. We want to stay above it.”

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OnBaseMachine
06-14-2009, 06:09 PM
After today's loss, the Reds are back to .500 for the first time since they were 10-10 on April 28th. They haven't been below .500 since they were 2-3 on April 12th.

I know I'm probably going to get mocked for this, but why not call up some of the young guys and give them a chance?

Drew Stubbs is arguably the best defensive outfielder in the minor leagues and is hitting .299/.387/.428 - .815 with 20 stolen bases in Triple-A. Bring him up to play some center field.

Drew Sutton is hitting .260/.383/.532 - .915 in Triple-A. He's a switch hitter and he can play all four infield positions.

Todd Frazier is hitting .332/.375/.513 - .887 in Double-A. He's only in AA, so he may need some time in Louisville first. Edit - as stated in another thread, I'd immediately shift him back to third base and being him up in a couple months if he adapts well to 3B.

klw
06-14-2009, 06:13 PM
Af

I know I'm probably going to get mocked for this, but why not call up some of the young guys and give them a chance?
.

I would mock you but you are right.

BCubb2003
06-14-2009, 06:20 PM
That's run-up-the-white-flag firesale sellers in the cellar talk.

SMcGavin
06-14-2009, 06:24 PM
Would you rather have Dickerson or Stubbs in center vs RHP? IMO, they are essentially the same player (they just bat from different sides of the plate). Stubbs could definitely see some time in CF vs LHP, but maybe the Reds would rather him get everyday at-bats in AAA to continue his development. If that's the case I can't really fault them.

I think Sutton would essentially play the same role as Hairston (OK bat and not so good defense at multiple positions).

Frazier needs AAA time and a position.

IMO the only guy in the minors who has definitely earned a call-up is Roenicke, but unfortuantely for him the bullpen has been a strength. So he gets to wait.

Kc61
06-14-2009, 06:39 PM
Would you rather have Dickerson or Stubbs in center vs RHP? IMO, they are essentially the same player (they just bat from different sides of the plate). Stubbs could definitely see some time in CF vs LHP, but maybe the Reds would rather him get everyday at-bats in AAA to continue his development. If that's the case I can't really fault them.

I think Sutton would essentially play the same role as Hairston (OK bat and not so good defense at multiple positions).

Frazier needs AAA time and a position.

IMO the only guy in the minors who has definitely earned a call-up is Roenicke, but unfortuantely for him the bullpen has been a strength. So he gets to wait.

Please accept some congratulations for an excellent post. Ok, I disagree on a couple of small points, but it is a fine post.

The Reds are at .500. They have just played 13 of 16 on the road. They are finally going home for a stretch of games. This isn't the time to turn the ballclub into a tryout camp.

Hopefully we've learned from guys like Bruce how tough it is to put up good major league numbers. Look at how Rosales has struggled. Teams need to wait until players are ready and there is a proper role for them.

Stubbs should play this year at AAA. Bring him up in September. Hopefully he'll be ready then to make the team next year. Same with Bailey, perhaps August if a trade opens a rotation spot. But don't rush these guys out of frustration because of a tough stretch.

I don't agree that Stubbs and Dickerson are the same player, Stubbs doesn't have the strikeout problem. And I think Hairston is pretty good defensively, but he belongs at second or even short, not at third. But these are quibbles, your basic point is important and I agree with it.

And I also give kudos to Dusty for his mature attitude toward the ballclub. It is developing, it hit a rough patch, now hopefully some guys will return from injury soon and the team will improve.

mth123
06-14-2009, 07:38 PM
Please accept some congratulations for an excellent post. Ok, I disagree on a couple of small points, but it is a fine post.

The Reds are at .500. They have just played 13 of 16 on the road. They are finally going home for a stretch of games. This isn't the time to turn the ballclub into a tryout camp.

Hopefully we've learned from guys like Bruce how tough it is to put up good major league numbers. Look at how Rosales has struggled. Teams need to wait until players are ready and there is a proper role for them.

Stubbs should play this year at AAA. Bring him up in September. Hopefully he'll be ready then to make the team next year. Same with Bailey, perhaps August if a trade opens a rotation spot. But don't rush these guys out of frustration because of a tough stretch.

I don't agree that Stubbs and Dickerson are the same player, Stubbs doesn't have the strikeout problem. And I think Hairston is pretty good defensively, but he belongs at second or even short, not at third. But these are quibbles, your basic point is important and I agree with it.

And I also give kudos to Dusty for his mature attitude toward the ballclub. It is developing, it hit a rough patch, now hopefully some guys will return from injury soon and the team will improve.

Except its pretty much already a tryout camp. With Hairston and Hernandez on the corners, Rosales spotting in, career fringe guys splitting LF and a 29 year old rookie handling most of the catching.

FWIW, I'm not in favor of adding Stubbs, Heisey or Frazier to the 40 man roster at this point. But Drew Sutton is hitting and on the 40 man and Rosales has had his chance. A switch would seem in order about now with a hot hand getting a chance to spark the team at a trouble spot. It happens all the time in Baseball; not sure why its such a major hand wringing decision in Cincy. IMO Rosales has a future as a bench player and going back down to give a another guy who is hot a chance isn't exactly writing the guy off.

GAC
06-14-2009, 09:24 PM
Would you rather have Dickerson or Stubbs in center vs RHP? IMO, they are essentially the same player (they just bat from different sides of the plate). Stubbs could definitely see some time in CF vs LHP, but maybe the Reds would rather him get everyday at-bats in AAA to continue his development. If that's the case I can't really fault them.

I think Sutton would essentially play the same role as Hairston (OK bat and not so good defense at multiple positions).

Frazier needs AAA time and a position.

IMO the only guy in the minors who has definitely earned a call-up is Roenicke, but unfortuantely for him the bullpen has been a strength. So he gets to wait.


Good post, and I agree. Rushing prospects is not the answer to help this '09 team IMO. Especially simply because they have a hot hand at AA or AAA. So did Rosales. ;)

hebroncougar
06-14-2009, 09:45 PM
Wait a minute........isn't this the team Baker wanted? Last year wasn't his team, so it was their fault.......

traderumor
06-14-2009, 10:49 PM
Wait a minute........isn't this the team Baker wanted? Last year wasn't his team, so it was their fault.......I'm missing your point :confused:

Raisor
06-14-2009, 10:50 PM
I'm missing your point :confused:

Baker through WK under the bus last year, saying that that team wasn't Baker's.

hebroncougar
06-14-2009, 10:51 PM
I'm missing your point :confused:

Last year we didn't win, he made a point to say it wasn't his fault because it wasn't "his" team. This year, these are supposed to be his guys, and now they aren't winning for another reason (they are too young). I'm not saying it's his fault, but man.......you can't keep coming up with reasons why you aren't winning. I'd love to see an attitude of "Damn the torpedoes, no more excuses, let's expect to win".

traderumor
06-15-2009, 12:11 AM
Last year we didn't win, he made a point to say it wasn't his fault because it wasn't "his" team. This year, these are supposed to be his guys, and now they aren't winning for another reason (they are too young). I'm not saying it's his fault, but man.......you can't keep coming up with reasons why you aren't winning. I'd love to see an attitude of "Damn the torpedoes, no more excuses, let's expect to win".Sorry, I don't see that as making excuses. I call that an observation and a frustration. BTW, Cast tried that approach with y'all, and he gets just as much grief for "the losing stops now" comment, so I don't buy that attitude would be satisfactory here either. Just a guess.

BCubb2003
06-15-2009, 01:09 AM
I kind of like Dusty these days. He's not going to reinvent the game, I know. He's not the worst manager ever, either. He's dealing with a banged up team that had a lot of holes to begin with. They're at .500, although I don't know how long that's going to last. Still, I kind of like the job he's been doing this year. Except for the rain delays.

fearofpopvol1
06-15-2009, 01:39 AM
It should be stated again...we should all be thanking our lucky stars that all the other teams in the Central have stunk as of late too. True, it would be a great time for the Reds to get to the top of the division...but at least they haven't really lost any ground despite all this losing.

Let's pray Votto, EdE and Volquez get back ASAP.

Caveat Emperor
06-15-2009, 02:54 AM
That's run-up-the-white-flag firesale sellers in the cellar talk.

And it wouldn't necessarily be a bad idea to start actively shopping Harang and Arroyo for prospects.

This team can't score runs consistently enough to compete, and they're not deep enough to survive long stretches with key players not performing or on the DL.

Screwball
06-15-2009, 03:41 AM
And it wouldn't necessarily be a bad idea to start actively shopping Harang and Arroyo for prospects.


I see this tossed around a lot and I don't really get it. I mean I guess I could see dealing Arroyo for prospects that can fill holes, but the Reds are going to need Harang if they want to challenge for a pennant next (this?) year. Nobody in the minors is going to replace what Harang gives us every 5th day, and I think we all know the Reds aren't going to get the top tier FA pitcher it would require to fill the void left by his departure.

traderumor
06-15-2009, 02:06 PM
I see this tossed around a lot and I don't really get it. I mean I guess I could see dealing Arroyo for prospects that can fill holes, but the Reds are going to need Harang if they want to challenge for a pennant next (this?) year. Nobody in the minors is going to replace what Harang gives us every 5th day, and I think we all know the Reds aren't going to get the top tier FA pitcher it would require to fill the void left by his departure.I would deal one for the right return, not both.

Kc61
06-15-2009, 02:14 PM
Here are some guys I could see the Reds trading this year.

Arroyo, Chris Heisey, Weathers, Maloney, Gonzalez (if a shortstop comes back).

Arroyo, Weathers, Gonzalez all are paid real money and should have value. Gonzo hasn't hit much but if somebody needs a SS down the stretch he could have value.

Heisey is hitting off the charts and probably would be a candidate for "sell high."

Maloney probably has more value to a team playing in a pitchers' park. Not a great fit for GABP since he gives up long fly balls.

I don't see the Reds trading Alonso or Bailey this year. I could see them trading an Arroyo and replacing him with Bailey.

I don't know Ramon Hernandez' contract situation. If he is a free agent after this year (that's what I remember, but could be wrong), I could see the Reds trading him at the deadline and starting Hanigan the rest of the year.

I could see them trading Harang in a blockbuster, but I'm convinced by others around here that it's unlikely.

redsmetz
06-15-2009, 02:43 PM
I don't know Ramon Hernandez' contract situation. If he is a free agent after this year (that's what I remember, but could be wrong), I could see the Reds trading him at the deadline and starting Hanigan the rest of the year.

Ramon has a club option for 2010 at $8.5M with a $1M buyout - we received $2M from Baltimore to offset some of his contract, which I'm guessing was applied against the $8M he's making this year.

HokieRed
06-15-2009, 02:44 PM
I see this tossed around a lot and I don't really get it. I mean I guess I could see dealing Arroyo for prospects that can fill holes, but the Reds are going to need Harang if they want to challenge for a pennant next (this?) year. Nobody in the minors is going to replace what Harang gives us every 5th day, and I think we all know the Reds aren't going to get the top tier FA pitcher it would require to fill the void left by his departure.

Excellent post. Harang and Arroyo always get mentioned as if they're the same or in the same category. But they're very different: Harang is enormously more valuable than Arroyo. I agree we have no chance to contend either this year (when contention is actually preposterous, IMHO, anyway) or next year, when it might be a real possibility, without Harang. The rotation I hope for in 2010 is Harang, Cueto, Volquez, Bailey, and Owings or Maloney as the 5th--unless the team decides to really do something aggressive and out of the box to address a major need like SS by going after the best prospect it can identify in all of baseball and offering Volquez. Arroyo, on the other hand, is unlikely, IMO, to bring any prospects at all because of his contract. Anybody on the other end of a trade involving Arroyo is going to argue, quite rightly, that they're giving the Reds plenty just in getting them off the hook for Arroyo's money. And Walt will have to take it, knowing they're right. Fans will scream at him b/c we'll seem to get nothing in return. But that's what it means to be a GM.

redsmetz
06-15-2009, 02:56 PM
Arroyo, on the other hand, is unlikely, IMO, to bring any prospects at all because of his contract. Anybody on the other end of a trade involving Arroyo is going to argue, quite rightly, that they're giving the Reds plenty just in getting them off the hook for Arroyo's money. And Walt will have to take it, knowing they're right. Fans will scream at him b/c we'll seem to get nothing in return. But that's what it means to be a GM.

I'm not sure I can say that. He's owed $11M for sure next year and a club option at the same amount, with a $2M buyout (option can increase to $13M with IP's, does not state the number of innings). That's not an exorbitant salary and there are clubs that will take that amount on without doing the Reds any favors, IMO. Now I think Arroyo's value will be higher as a late season trade for a club looking to get some pitching for a pennant run. I think his value probably will be less during the off-season when there are free agent pitchers on the market. I could be completely wrong, but I think we tend to underestimate the value of our stable of players around here.

Caveat Emperor
06-15-2009, 04:29 PM
Excellent post. Harang and Arroyo always get mentioned as if they're the same or in the same category. But they're very different: Harang is enormously more valuable than Arroyo. I agree we have no chance to contend either this year (when contention is actually preposterous, IMHO, anyway) or next year, when it might be a real possibility, without Harang.

Moving Harang would free cash to acquire pitching in the offseason, if the team elects to go the free agent route. It would also free cash to acquire a bat to help the lineup and the remaining young pitchers under team control: Cueto, Volquez, Owings, Maloney, Bailey. It would also, potentially, bring prospects into the organization in areas of desperate need -- such as SS.

If the Reds are out of it, Harang makes zero sense for this team. His numbers are declining -- he isn't the same pitcher this year that he was 2 years ago, and age-decline tells us that he likely won't be the same pitcher next year either. Get value while you can, clear dollars off the ledger, and figure out how to reload next year.

*BaseClogger*
06-15-2009, 05:26 PM
I don't agree that Stubbs and Dickerson are the same player, Stubbs doesn't have the strikeout problem. And I think Hairston is pretty good defensively, but he belongs at second or even short, not at third. But these are quibbles, your basic point is important and I agree with it.

This was a nice post, but I have some issues with these two points.

First of all, Stubbs does have a strikeout problem; for his minor league career he strikes out once every 3.7 ABs, while Dickerson struck out once every 3.2 ABs.

Second, I have to question your opinion of Jerry Hairston's defense. You think he is "pretty good defensively" at shortstop? Are you delirious from our lack of defense at that position the last few years? He is simply not a major league caliber shortstop...

Kc61
06-15-2009, 05:33 PM
This was a nice post, but I have some issues with these two points.

First of all, Stubbs does have a strikeout problem; for his minor league career he strikes out once every 3.7 ABs, while Dickerson struck out once every 3.2 ABs.

Second, I have to question your opinion of Jerry Hairston's defense. You think he is "pretty good defensively" at shortstop? Are you delirious from our lack of defense at that position the last few years? He is simply not a major league caliber shortstop...

Not delirious. Saw Hairston play shortstop. He has very good range. i didn't see him mess up a lot of plays either.

He does not throw well enough to be a full time third baseman or shortstop. From short, he nevertheless made good throws. From third, he has more trouble throwing accurately, for whatever reason.

Just what I observed. Sorry I didn't agree with your view.

As for Stubbs, his strikeout numbers have improved dramatically since he became more of a singles/doubles hitter and stopped swinging for the fences. This year he has 40 Ks in about 220 plate appearances and 191 official at bats. That's a pretty good number. About one K every 4.7 official at bats.

HokieRed
06-15-2009, 05:47 PM
Moving Harang would free cash to acquire pitching in the offseason, if the team elects to go the free agent route. It would also free cash to acquire a bat to help the lineup and the remaining young pitchers under team control: Cueto, Volquez, Owings, Maloney, Bailey. It would also, potentially, bring prospects into the organization in areas of desperate need -- such as SS.

If the Reds are out of it, Harang makes zero sense for this team. His numbers are declining -- he isn't the same pitcher this year that he was 2 years ago, and age-decline tells us that he likely won't be the same pitcher next year either. Get value while you can, clear dollars off the ledger, and figure out how to reload next year.

A couple of simple questions. How many free agent starters equal to Harang were in the free agent market this season? How often has Cinti. succeeded in bringing a pitcher of Harang's status in, either through free agency or otherwise?

*BaseClogger*
06-15-2009, 05:47 PM
Not delirious. Saw Hairston play shortstop. He has very good range. i didn't see him mess up a lot of plays either.

He does not throw well enough to be a full time third baseman or shortstop. From short, he nevertheless made good throws. From third, he has more trouble throwing accurately, for whatever reason.

Just what I observed. Sorry I didn't agree with your view.

That's fine, as you are entitled to your opinion. I just think you are in the VAST minority with that opinion.


As for Stubbs, his strikeout numbers have improved dramatically since he became more of a singles/doubles hitter and stopped swinging for the fences. This year he has 40 Ks in about 220 plate appearances and 191 official at bats. That's a pretty good number. About one K every 4.7 official at bats.

I guess I just don't see strikeouts as being a major way to differentiate Stubbs and Dickerson. Dickerson has only struckout once every 3.3 ABs with the Reds. I'm inclined to guess that Stubbs strikeout rate would increase at the major league level, and I doubt it would be much of a factor when choosing between the two players.

For now, I would keep Stubbs at AAA to get full-time ABs and let Dickerson play just about everyday with the Reds so we can figure out what we got...

Kc61
06-15-2009, 06:06 PM
.



I guess I just don't see strikeouts as being a major way to differentiate Stubbs and Dickerson. Dickerson has only struckout once every 3.3 ABs with the Reds.
...

If your number is right, Dickerson strikes out slightly less often than one/third of his official at bats. There is no "only" in that. It is a very high strikeout rate. Even most power hitters strike out less frequently than that.

My calculation is once every 3.6 at bats. Even that is quite a high rate. Stubbs' current rate at AAA is much, much better.

Screwball
06-15-2009, 06:08 PM
A couple of simple questions. How many free agent starters equal to Harang were in the free agent market this season? How often has Cinti. succeeded in bringing a pitcher of Harang's status in, either through free agency or otherwise?

Right. That and the money it would take to bring in a pitcher of Harang's quality would probably cost substantially more than what Harang himself would cost, both in dollars and in years.

*BaseClogger*
06-15-2009, 06:14 PM
If your number is right, Dickerson strikes out slightly less often than one/third of his official at bats. There is no "only" in that. It is a very high strikeout rate. Even most power hitters strike out less frequently than that.

My calculation is once every 3.6 at bats. Even that is quite a high rate. Stubbs' current rate at AAA is much, much better.

I agree it is a much better rate. But remember this:


Hopefully we've learned from guys like Bruce how tough it is to put up good major league numbers. Look at how Rosales has struggled.

I'm comparing a AAA rate with a major league rate. The two would have comparable strikeout rates in the majors IMO...

Kc61
06-15-2009, 06:49 PM
I agree it is a much better rate. But remember this:



I'm comparing a AAA rate with a major league rate. The two would have comparable strikeout rates in the majors IMO...


Dickerson is a good young player, he can take a walk and is terrific defensively in CF. But his strikeout numbers are high, were high in his stint last year, and during his minor league career. I doubt that Stubbs will approach those K rates in the major leagues.

This is not to say that I favor bringing Stubbs up now. I don't. I would let him play out the year at AAA and bring him up, hopefully for good, in August or September. He found minor league success reasonably recently, and I'd let him have a great season at AAA, then bring him up.

Reds may feel differently since there are so few good hitters at AAA.

Raisor
06-15-2009, 07:39 PM
Dickerson is a good young player, he can take a walk and is terrific defensively in CF. But his strikeout numbers are high, were high in his stint last year, and during his minor league career. I doubt that Stubbs will approach those K rates in the major leagues.

.

If Dickerson has a good OBP and playing "terrific"ly in CF, I could give two hoots if he K's alot.