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OnBaseMachine
03-01-2010, 11:37 AM
Alonso trying third base, outfield

Many have wondered what would happen to Joey Votto when Yonder Alonso reaches the big leagues since both are good young hitters and of course, both play first base.

In an effort to see if can be versatile, the Reds have had Alonso working out lately at third base, left field and right field.

"It doesn't matter where I play as long as I play," Alonso said. "As long as I get a shot and prove to the guys I can play there. In my head, I know I can play. I just want to get my shot.

"I'm doing everything, and they're trying everything, so I can go up there."

Right now, it's just a trial run for Alonso. He's still primarily working out at first base.

"We just wanted to expose him to some different positions and see if he feels comfortable," general manager Walt Jocketty said. "We'll see how it goes. If it goes well enough, we'll put him in some games at different positions. It would just make him more valuable to us if he can play other places."

Lots of speculation has involved Votto being moved to left field when Alonso is ready for his promotion. Jocketty dispelled that notion.

"It will take some time to figure it out," he said. "That's why we want to see him at different positions. He's got a great bat and Joey is going to be at first base for a long time. I don't see moving Joey."

More on this later today on MLB.com/Reds.com

http://marksheldon.mlblogs.com/

dunner13
03-01-2010, 11:53 AM
Good, Votto has proven himself to be a future face of this franchise. I think 10 years from now we will be very happy that we kept votto at 1B.

RedLegSuperStar
03-01-2010, 11:53 AM
Alonso is July trade bait...

Homer Bailey
03-01-2010, 11:55 AM
Alonso is July trade bait...

Not to turn it into the Beckham/Alonso debate again, but it really does make you wonder what they were thinking....

dfs
03-01-2010, 11:57 AM
Don't the reds have thirdbaseman that they've committed to for a couple of years?

Jpup
03-01-2010, 11:57 AM
Not to turn it into the Beckham/Alonso debate again, but it really does make you wonder what they were thinking....

Best player available and that is the way it should be.

Sea Ray
03-01-2010, 12:02 PM
Well 3B is a better idea than catcher but...

redsmetz
03-01-2010, 12:04 PM
Best player available and that is the way it should be.

I agree completely. If Alonso proves himself to be a decent ML hitter, it's a good problem to have. I want the Reds to be forced to have to decide where they're going to play three very good young hitters (Votto, Bruce, Alonso) over the next several years. And I would prefer that they all three be on our team.

Kc61
03-01-2010, 12:07 PM
Seems like the Reds aren't very big on commiting prospects to a position. Francisco, Frazier, now Alonso. Playing all over the lot. Hope it works out.

RedEye
03-01-2010, 12:28 PM
I agree that the team should take the best player available... but I'm not sure that Alonso WAS the best player available, especially considering that Beckham is a heavy-hitting middle infielder--not exactly the type that grows on trees, if you know what I mean. Sure, if their estimation was that Yonder was a better overall player at the time, I'm okay with it. That said, given Alonso's defensive liabilities and Beckham's rarity as a good hitter at a weak position, I'd be really interested in knowing what the thought process was for Buckley and the Reds scouts to arrive at that conclusion.

dunner13
03-01-2010, 12:36 PM
There is no doubt that if the reds had beckham playing SS right now instead of Alonso in AAA they would be in better position to win now and in the next few years. My guess is that the reds thought alonsos bat was to much to pass up and they thought beckham could only play 2nd. I would have rather had beckham but hindsight is 20/20.

kaldaniels
03-01-2010, 12:38 PM
Not to turn it into the Beckham/Alonso debate again, but it really does make you wonder what they were thinking....

They did not know at the time how good Votto was going to be. None of us did.

Chip R
03-01-2010, 12:39 PM
Don't the reds have thirdbaseman that they've committed to for a couple of years?


A couple of years. Plus Rolen isn't exactly known for staying healthy. I expect that to worsen as he gets older.

Brutus
03-01-2010, 12:56 PM
There is no doubt that if the reds had beckham playing SS right now instead of Alonso in AAA they would be in better position to win now and in the next few years. My guess is that the reds thought alonsos bat was to much to pass up and they thought beckham could only play 2nd. I would have rather had beckham but hindsight is 20/20.

There's a solid chance Beckham will never play SS. That's the thing. There were questions about his ability to play there defensively, and the Sox have since converted him to third. I don't mind the logic that, even as a third baseman, he was more valuable a prospect than Yonder Alonso. However, if it was based on the premise that he's a great-hitting middle infielder, then that premise seems to be based on somewhat faulty logic if he doesn't in fact have the glove to stay there.

MikeS21
03-01-2010, 12:56 PM
Here's the thing. Votto is a GREAT hitter. But I don't think his defense ought to be dismissed, either. Votto has worked hard on his defense. I think he has worked on his defense so much that he has turned it from a liability into a pretty decent asset.

He may not be a Gold Glover, but I'd say Joey is solid average, and maybe a tick or two better than average. And it wouldn't surprise me if in three or four years, Votto isn't one of the top three defensive 1B's in the NL.

Wasn't he drafted as a catcher? Didn't the Reds experiment with Votto at 3B for part of a season in the low minors?

redsmetz
03-01-2010, 01:12 PM
Here's the thing. Votto is a GREAT hitter. But I don't think his defense ought to be dismissed, either. Votto has worked hard on his defense. I think he has worked on his defense so much that he has turned it from a liability into a pretty decent asset.

He may not be a Gold Glover, but I'd say Joey is solid average, and maybe a tick or two better than average. And it wouldn't surprise me if in three or four years, Votto isn't one of the top three defensive 1B's in the NL.

Wasn't he drafted as a catcher? Didn't the Reds experiment with Votto at 3B for part of a season in the low minors?

He was drafted as a catcher. And his minor stats show that in his first season in the GCL, he played 3 games in LF, 7 at catcher and 19 at 3B. I'll leave others to determine what that record was defensively.

http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=votto-001jos

Caveat Emperor
03-01-2010, 01:58 PM
Alonso is July trade bait...

Yup.

Assuming Joey Votto's personal issues are behind him, I'd be shocked if Alonso ever logs significant time with the Cincinnati Reds.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 02:04 PM
If this isn't just lip service, its pretty dumb. If you ask 100 people who have seen both Votto and Alonso play which one would even have a chance of being a solid left fielder, 100 would say Votto. I get that Votto is established and very good, but this is a move that seems built around making a player happy rather than the team better. The team would absolutely 100% be better if Votto were in LF and Alonso at 1B rather than Alonso in LF and Votto at 1B.

TRF
03-01-2010, 02:08 PM
If this isn't just lip service, its pretty dumb. If you ask 100 people who have seen both Votto and Alonso play which one would even have a chance of being a solid left fielder, 100 would say Votto. I get that Votto is established and very good, but this is a move that seems built around making a player happy rather than the team better. The team would absolutely 100% be better if Votto were in LF and Alonso at 1B rather than Alonso in LF and Votto at 1B.

That sure takes a lot of other players out of the equation.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 02:09 PM
That sure takes a lot of other players out of the equation.

Well of course. But hypothetically if they are sticking with those two at those positions, then what I said makes perfect sense.

TRF
03-01-2010, 02:18 PM
But of course they aren't. Heisey has a shot at LF (should be CF, but that's another argument) Frazier has a shot. Francisco has a shot, longer maybe, but its there. Wlad has a shot.

The best combo isn't necessarily Votto/Alonso. And Alonso's greatest value to the Reds might be as trade bait.

OnBaseMachine
03-01-2010, 02:47 PM
Alonso trying to find a spot
By C. Trent Rosecrans, CNATI.com Posted March 1, 2010 12:14 PM ET

GOODYEAR, Ariz. - Yonder Alonso hears the talk, how could he not? Even without the talk, it makes sense. The Reds have a franchise first baseman who is young and getting better every season in Joey Votto, and Alonso plays the same position.

Picked by the Reds with the seventh overall selection in the 2008 draft, Alonso's bat is nearing big-league ready, but he just needs a place to play. That could come from a change of team or a change of position.

"I don't want to get traded, I really like it here," Alonso said.

Alonso played in Class A Sarasota last season and in Class AA Carolina before missing two months with a broken right hamate bone and then played in the Arizona Fall League. Baseball America rated him the Reds' second-best prospect coming into the 2010 season. Bottom line is, he's got to play. It just doesn't appear it'll be at first base.

So Alonso's trying his hand elsewhere. On his own, he's been working in the outfield. He's also gone back to work on third base, a position he played in college, and he even caught bullpens last season ("I sucked," he notes. "I was terrible.")

"I've got to make sure I prepare, look at all the field, right, left, third, first, anything. I can also catch and just hope for the best," Alonso said.

Reds manager Dusty Baker said he noticed Alonso working in leftfield on his own on Sunday.

"I know he can hit," Baker said.

Alonso will likely get his chance to show that in the exhibition games. He and Votto are the only players who are primarily first basemen in camp, although several others can and have played first. Danny Dorn plays first too, but is listed as an outfield. Baker also said the team would employ a designated hitter for much of spring in order to get more players at-bats.

Regardless, Alonso said he knows he'll get his chance and isn't frustrated at having to find a way around Votto, who is unlikely to move positions now that he has established himself as a good defensive first baseman.

"It's not frustrating, because I look at it as a challenge for me," Alonso said. "I look at (Votto) and try to learn as much as I can. I talk to Scott Rolen about what I can do. I talk to Jay Bruce. You'll see me talking to everyone, trying to learn. So far it's worked out good. I'm getting positive feedback. I'm happy. As long as I hit, I guess."

Because Alonso can hit, the Reds will find a place for him - until then, he'll be saddled with the questions, which is the worst part.

"It comes with it," Alonso said. "We've got an All-Star at first base and you have someone coming up that's young, 22, and it's just part of it. I've got to make sure I'm prepared and do my part, and everyone's going to do their part and win."

Baker noted that it's hardly unprecedented, either.

"I remember coming up as a kid when they had Willie McCovy and Orlando Cepeda on the same team and they ended up moving one to the outfield. You remember when the Cincinnati Reds had Lee May and Tony Perez. They had a similar problem there, right?"

In the end, the Reds traded Lee May to Houston to alleviate that logjam and got a decent second baseman out of the deal.

http://cnati.com/spring-training-2010/alonso-trying-to-find-a-spot-001395/

Spring~Fields
03-01-2010, 02:55 PM
If this isn't just lip service, its pretty dumb. If you ask 100 people who have seen both Votto and Alonso play which one would even have a chance of being a solid left fielder, 100 would say Votto. I get that Votto is established and very good, but this is a move that seems built around making a player happy rather than the team better. The team would absolutely 100% be better if Votto were in LF and Alonso at 1B rather than Alonso in LF and Votto at 1B.

I think you're right Doug on each of your points.
+
Maybe some of it is just conversation now, or lip service as you have said.

OnBaseMachine
03-01-2010, 02:56 PM
You have to love Alonso's attitude. It sounds like he's willing to do anything to to reach the majors with the Reds. I'd love to have his bat in the lineup everyday along with Bruce and Votto, but I'm just not sure if we'll ever see that. I agree with some of the others, I think he may end up being trade bait, a la Matt LaPorta.

westofyou
03-01-2010, 03:01 PM
Seems like the Reds aren't very big on commiting prospects to a position. Francisco, Frazier, now Alonso. Playing all over the lot. Hope it works out.

Deron Johnson, Tony Perez, Tommy Harper, Dan Driessen made it through the changes, maybe these guys can too.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 03:02 PM
If this isn't just lip service, its pretty dumb. If you ask 100 people who have seen both Votto and Alonso play which one would even have a chance of being a solid left fielder, 100 would say Votto. I get that Votto is established and very good, but this is a move that seems built around making a player happy rather than the team better. The team would absolutely 100% be better if Votto were in LF and Alonso at 1B rather than Alonso in LF and Votto at 1B.

Keeping Votto happy would make more sense to me than moving him for the #50something prospect in baseball.

Benihana
03-01-2010, 03:08 PM
Alonso is July trade bait...

Yep. I'll bet a dollar he's in another organization by this time next year.

I just hope we get a good SS, C, or LF in return. I'll settle for a starter if we're in the midst of a playoff run.

Again, not to beat a dead horse, but would you/they do the same thing if we were talking about Justin Smoak?

OnBaseMachine
03-01-2010, 03:30 PM
Jocketty on Alonso
Posted by jfay March 1st, 2010, 2:28 pm

Walt Jocketty said the Reds plan to try Yonder Alonso at other positions.

Well play him at third and in left, Jocketty said. Well see how he plays there. I dont see Joey (Votto) moving.

If Alonso cant make the transition from first base to another position, a trade may be inevitable.

I dont want to speculate on that, Jocketty said. We drafted Alonso for his bat. Were going to try to find a place for him to play.

The Reds also have Juan Francisco and Todd Frazier is the mix for left and third.

We have a lot of good young players, Jocketty said. Its a good problem to have. But these things have there ways of working out.

http://cincinnati.com/blogs/reds/

Caveat Emperor
03-01-2010, 03:32 PM
Keeping Votto happy would make more sense to me than moving him for the #50something prospect in baseball.

Agreed -- why mess with the guy who has made it to the majors and is playing successfully at a high level to clear room for a kid who hasn't been spectacular in the minors and is still in AA ball?

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 03:54 PM
Keeping Votto happy would make more sense to me than moving him for the #50something prospect in baseball.

When Alonso is ready to play in MLB, it is not going to matter what prospect # people have attached to him, what's going to matter is how are the Reds the best team they can be. If Votto has to move to make the Reds better, his and this board's tears will really be pointless much as this board's defensiveness on the issue is meaningless right now. Walt said what he had to say at this point, but that may very well change down the line.

Again, I am amused by the bashers. Alonso is one the 2-3 best hitting prospects the Reds have had in the last 10 years or so and y'all can't even appreciate it. Pretty funny.

Bum

Spring~Fields
03-01-2010, 03:56 PM
Agreed -- why mess with the guy who has made it to the majors and is playing successfully at a high level to clear room for a kid who hasn't been spectacular in the minors and is still in AA ball?

That is what I was stumbling over in this article. It all seems somewhat premature for this discussion due to what you have said "a kid who hasn't been spectacular in the minors and is still in AA ball" It's going to be awhile yet, isn't it?

TRF
03-01-2010, 04:00 PM
Again, I am amused by the bashers. Alonso is one the 2-3 best hitting prospects the Reds have had in the last 10 years or so and y'all can't even appreciate it. Pretty funny.

Bum


Hmm. Dunn, Kearns, Votto, Bruce. Thats four prospects I would have ranked ahead of Alonso. I have Frazier ahead of him too (JMO)

2-3? no. top 10? sure.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 04:03 PM
When Alonso is ready to play in MLB, it is not going to matter what prospect # people have attached to him, what's going to matter is how are the Reds the best team they can be. If Votto has to move to make the Reds better, his and this board's tears will really be pointless much as this board's defensiveness on the issue is meaningless right now. Walt said what he had to say at this point, but that may very well change down the line.

Again, I am amused by the bashers. Alonso is one the 2-3 best hitting prospects the Reds have had in the last 10 years or so and y'all can't even appreciate it. Pretty funny.

Bum

Maybe Alonso is one of the 2-3 best hitting prospects. But Votto is one of the 2-3 best players Cincy has had. That's the difference.

It would be fun to see what would happen if Votto moves and then Alonso bombs. Or Votto turns into Dunn in LF. Or Votto's numbers go down b/c he is bent due to the move. Or if he bolts the first chance he gets b/c he is unhappy with being forced to move for someone who's ceiling is about where Votto was last year.

This isn't MLB The Show. You can't just move them around for the hell of it.

Kc61
03-01-2010, 04:04 PM
That is what I was stumbling over in this article. It all seems somewhat premature for this discussion due to what you have said "a kid who hasn't been spectacular in the minors and is still in AA ball" It's going to be awhile yet, isn't it?

Reds can't keep Alonso on the farm for too long because he signed a major league deal and uses an option every year. So they have to decide on him fairly soon.

This is a big year for him. He needs to stay healthy and hit.

And by the way, I don't see why Alonso can't be a left fielder. Stubbs can cover half his position if necessary.

Spring~Fields
03-01-2010, 04:09 PM
Reds can't keep Alonso on the farm for too long because he signed a major league deal and uses an option every year. So they have to decide on him fairly soon.

This is a big year for him. He needs to stay healthy and hit.

And by the way, I don't see why Alonso can't be a left fielder. Stubbs can cover half his position if necessary.

I think that you are right about all of that. I just don't know the rest of the specifics of his contract or the Reds plans.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 04:12 PM
Maybe Alonso is one of the 2-3 best hitting prospects. But Votto is one of the 2-3 best players Cincy has had. That's the difference.

It would be fun to see what would happen if Votto moves and then Alonso bombs. Or Votto turns into Dunn in LF. Or Votto's numbers go down b/c he is bent due to the move. Or if he bolts the first chance he gets b/c he is unhappy with being forced to move for someone who's ceiling is about where Votto was last year.

This isn't MLB The Show. You can't just move them around for the hell of it.

See, that's the problem, why do you assume he would bomb? Just because he plays the same position as Votto? That's ridiculous. He's a tremendous player and he is being bashed just because he plays the same position as this board's favorite player, right? What if he was a LF, would you say the same things about it being fun to watch him bomb? What would be fun about that?

To others: Kearns was not a better prospect than Alonso (and while Frazier is a fine prospect, he is not the hitting prospect that Alonso is; Frazier's floor and ceiling as a hitter are both below Alonso's) and Gordon Beckham is not a MI at all; he is a CI at this point. Not that Beckham even matters since he is not in the Red's organization but one should understand his capabilities before posting that he's a "hard-hitting MI..."

Bum

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 04:17 PM
See, that's the problem, why do you assume he would bomb? Just because he plays the same position as Votto? That's ridiculous. He's a tremendous player and he is being bashed just because he plays the same position as this board's favorite player, right? What if he was a LF, would you say the same things about it being fun to watch him bomb? What would be fun about that?

To others: Kearns was not a better prospect than Alonso (and while Frazier is a fine prospect, he is not the hitting prospect that Alonso is; Frazier's floor and ceiling as a hitter are both below Alonso's) and Gordon Beckham is not a MI at all; he is a CI at this point. Not that Beckham even matters since he is not in the Red's organization but one should understand his capabilities before posting that he's a "hard-hitting MI..."

Bum

I'm not assuming that Alonso is going to bomb. I just don't see why you move your best player for someone who carries risk.

If Walt went and got Pujols, I'd personally buy Votto a new mitt. If there was a top, top prospect coming through the minors who was tearing up AAA and was a disaster in LF, I would strongly consider my options. But I wouldn't do that for someone like Alonso at this point.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 04:30 PM
"Someone like Alonso..." Comical...just another crappy prospect I guess...not as good as Rosales, Janish or Dorn...haha If the Reds clung to the crap prospects like this board does and overlooked their best one's, us fans could count on another 10 years of losing. I have faith that Jockety is smarter than that.

If it makes the team better, you move him. Pete Rose moved all over the place so that the Reds could win but then he wasn't Joey Votto was he?

By the way, you said it would be FUN to watch Alonso bomb...what would be fun about the Red's top prospect bombing?

TRF
03-01-2010, 04:33 PM
"Someone like Alonso..." Comical...just another crappy prospect I guess...not as good as Rosales, Janish or Dorn...haha If the Reds clung to the crap prospects like this board does and overlooked their best one's, us fans could count on another 10 years of losing. I have faith that Jockety is smarter than that.

If it makes the team better, you move him. Pete Rose moved all over the place so that the Reds could win but then he wasn't Joey Votto was he?

By the way, you said it would be FUN to watch Alonso bomb...what would be fun about the Red's top prospect bombing?

Pete threw a fit the first time he was asked to move, and basically refused to do it.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 04:36 PM
By the way, you said it would be FUN to watch Alonso bomb...what would be fun about the Red's top prospect bombing?

You might want to re-read what I said.

Spring~Fields
03-01-2010, 04:41 PM
You might want to re-read what I said.

I read what both of you said and wrote, I think he was very coherent and accurate in every line of his responses and questions in return.


It would be fun to see what would happen if Votto moves and then Alonso bombs.


By the way, you said it would be FUN to watch Alonso bomb...what would be fun about the Red's top prospect bombing?

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 04:42 PM
Pete threw a fit the first time he was asked to move, and basically refused to do it.

And yet, he moved and the Reds won...

camisadelgolf
03-01-2010, 04:44 PM
2010 will be Yonder Alonso's second option year out of four. He won't be required to be in the big leagues until 2013.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 04:46 PM
Agreed -- why mess with the guy who has made it to the majors and is playing successfully at a high level to clear room for a kid who hasn't been spectacular in the minors and is still in AA ball?

Because moving him for the kid in AAA ball could make the team better than Votto at 1B and someone else in left field?

TRF
03-01-2010, 04:47 PM
And yet, he moved and the Reds won...

Yeah. that's why the Reds won. That one move.

RedsManRick
03-01-2010, 04:55 PM
I don't think Alonso finishes the year in the Reds organization. I think he gets traded as part of a package in the trade deadline, either to acquire a "needed" veteran or to sweeten a package that moves Harang or Arroyo.

RedEye
03-01-2010, 04:55 PM
If this isn't just lip service, its pretty dumb. If you ask 100 people who have seen both Votto and Alonso play which one would even have a chance of being a solid left fielder, 100 would say Votto. I get that Votto is established and very good, but this is a move that seems built around making a player happy rather than the team better. The team would absolutely 100% be better if Votto were in LF and Alonso at 1B rather than Alonso in LF and Votto at 1B.

Well, there is some precedent here for not even trying players at positions they can (apparently) play. See Phillips, Brandon.

westofyou
03-01-2010, 05:02 PM
And yet, he moved and the Reds won...

Not until he moved for the 4th time

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:04 PM
Yeah. that's why the Reds won. That one move.

When Pete moved to 3B it clearly made the Reds a better team. That's all I was saying. If you want to downplay that move to fit whatever it is you are trying to say, feel free to carry on, but I am right in what I am saying.

If Votto needs to move to make the Reds a better team, he will. If he doesn't want to, too bad. A professional will do whatever he has to to make the team better. Alonso is trying to do that; Votto may be asked to do the same in the future regardless of what Jocketty says at this moment.

Bum

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:07 PM
* points up to woy's post.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:08 PM
Not until he moved for the 4th time

Guess I should have been specific about the move I was referring to...:D

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:09 PM
* points up to woy's post.

points up to my last post...carry on...:rolleyes:

Kc61
03-01-2010, 05:09 PM
Because moving him for the kid in AAA ball could make the team better than Votto at 1B and someone else in left field?

As was said today, it's hard for me to see Votto moving his position at this stage.

I don't see why Alonso can't move to left field. He isn't fast, I don't expect a star defender out there, but he's certainly young enough to make the switch. He seems open to it. Reds should certainly try it.

There are some left fielders in baseball who don't have good reputations as defenders. But they have the most important tool for a guy in that position -- they can hit. If Carlos Lee and Manny Ramirez can play left field - occasionally on winning teams - why can't Alonso.

RedEye
03-01-2010, 05:12 PM
There are some pretty awful defensive left fielders in baseball, who have the most important tool for a guy in that position -- they can hit. If Carlos Lee and Manny Ramirez can play left field - occasionally on winning teams - why can't Alonso.

Why the heck would the Reds accept second-rate defense if they can avoid it by shifting some players around? I'm sure people who shoot themselves in the foot can occasionally walk afterwards, but that doesn't mean its a recommended practice...

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 05:13 PM
I read what both of you said and wrote, I think he was very coherent and accurate in every line of his responses and questions in return.

Here's what I said:


It would be fun to see what would happen if Votto moves and then Alonso bombs. Or Votto turns into Dunn in LF. Or Votto's numbers go down b/c he is bent due to the move. Or if he bolts the first chance he gets b/c he is unhappy with being forced to move for someone who's ceiling is about where Votto was last year.

I underlined the parts that didn't make it through the translation.

I was basically saying that it would be interesting to see the reaction if any of those things happened after they forced Votto to move. Like if Alonso threw up a .250/.330/.420 line and then Votto walked b/c he was dissatisfied with management's decision.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:14 PM
Why the heck would the Reds accept second-rate defense if they can avoid it by shifting some players around? I'm sure people who shoot themselves in the foot can occasionally walk afterwards, but that doesn't mean its a recommended practice...

Exactly. There is no doubt that the combo of Votto in LF and Alonso at 1B is the better of the two options solely involving those two players.

Kc61
03-01-2010, 05:15 PM
Why the heck would the Reds accept second-rate defense if they can avoid it by shifting some players around? I'm sure people who shoot themselves in the foot can occasionally walk afterwards, but that doesn't mean its a recommended practice...

I think you're assuming that Votto can be a better left fielder than Alonso. I don't know why you think so.

The vacant position is left. The hitter looking for a spot is Alonso. Why not try him out there?

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:15 PM
I still don't see the fun involved in your scenario...It seems counterproductive to cheering for your team to get better and actually win some games. JMHO of course.

CTA513
03-01-2010, 05:15 PM
"Someone like Alonso..." Comical...just another crappy prospect I guess...not as good as Rosales, Janish or Dorn...haha If the Reds clung to the crap prospects like this board does and overlooked their best one's, us fans could count on another 10 years of losing. I have faith that Jockety is smarter than that.

If it makes the team better, you move him. Pete Rose moved all over the place so that the Reds could win but then he wasn't Joey Votto was he?

By the way, you said it would be FUN to watch Alonso bomb...what would be fun about the Red's top prospect bombing?

Counting on the Reds best prospects to turn the organization around doesn't seem to be working.

icehole3
03-01-2010, 05:18 PM
There are some left fielders in baseball who don't have good reputations as defenders. But they have the most important tool for a guy in that position -- they can hit. If Carlos Lee and Manny Ramirez can play left field - occasionally on winning teams - why can't Alonso.

I agree, you have to at least try Alonso in LF, so what if it fails, it fails at least you tried, if he's Adam Dunn out there then trade him.

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:19 PM
points up to my last post...carry on...:rolleyes:

cute smiley.

My point is Pete Rose didn't move to LF for an unproven rookie at 2B
He didn't move to RF for an unproven rookie in LF.
In '72 he did move for the relatively untested Geronimo, but he moved from RF to LF, a position he played for a few years.
He didn't move to 3B for an unproven rookie in LF.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 05:19 PM
Exactly. There is no doubt that the combo of Votto in LF and Alonso at 1B is the better of the two options solely involving those two players.

There is plenty of doubt in my mind. We have no idea if Votto can play a competent LF. We have no idea how well Alonso can play LF. Heck we have no idea how well Alonso would play 1st in the majors.

The only thing we do know defensively is that Votto is a reasonable 1st baseman. Changing that on the basis of a huge chain of assumptions is very much a risk.

It's also a decision that doesn't have to even be made yet.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:20 PM
I agree, you have to at least try Alonso in LF, so what if it fails, it fails at least you tried, if he's Adam Dunn out there then trade him.

So, Alonso either plays LF or the Reds have to trade him? Why?

Sea Ray
03-01-2010, 05:22 PM
From what I've read, Walt and Co are not going to move Votto. I look forward to more years of discussions on RZ of this thing that'll never happen just like we've all been treated to vis-a-vie Brandon Phillips and his move to SS.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:22 PM
There is plenty of doubt in my mind. We have no idea if Votto can play a competent LF. We have no idea how well Alonso can play LF. Heck we have no idea how well Alonso would play 1st in the majors.

The only thing we do know defensively is that Votto is a reasonable 1st baseman. Changing that on the basis of a huge chain of assumptions is very much a risk.

It's also a decision that doesn't have to even be made yet.

Here is what we know.... Joey Votto has over a third of a season's experience in playing left field. Joey Votto is faster than Yonder Alonso is. Joey Votto has a better arm than Yonder Alonso does. All of those suggests that Joey Votto would make a much better left fielder than Yonder Alonso will. We also know what Yonder Alonso is an average first baseman in the minors and that is likely to transfer forward to the majors.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 05:23 PM
I still don't see the fun involved in your scenario...It seems counterproductive to cheering for your team to get better and actually win some games. JMHO of course.

It would be fun to see the reaction. Like if everyone cheers the move of Votto to LF and then he bails the first chance he gets. Or if Votto moves and both his and Alonso's stats aren't up to par. I am sure the FO would then be lambasted for the move.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 05:24 PM
Here is what we know.... Joey Votto has over a third of a season's experience in playing left field. Joey Votto is faster than Yonder Alonso is. Joey Votto has a better arm than Yonder Alonso does. All of those suggests that Joey Votto would make a much better left fielder than Yonder Alonso will. We also know what Yonder Alonso is an average first baseman in the minors and that is likely to transfer forward to the majors.

I'm not comapring the two as players by any stretch, but would you move Pujols back to LF (assuming Holliday wasn't there and there was a need) for Alonso?

Kc61
03-01-2010, 05:26 PM
From what I've read, Walt and Co are not going to move Votto. I look forward to more years of discussions on RZ of this thing that'll never happen just like we've all been treated to vis-a-vie Brandon Phillips and his move to SS.

I know this will result in a barrage of attacks, but the truth is that some guys learn a position, improve, and it becomes difficult to ask them to move. Votto has improved at first, he's now in his prime. Same with Phillips at second. It becomes difficult to ask them to throw away that accomplishment and start over at a new position.

It's much easier to take a minor leaguer and tell him to try something new. He's still at the learning stage.

Alonso seems willing. Hopefully he's also able and can be a decent left fielder. Then let his bat do the main work.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:27 PM
It would be fun to see the reaction. Like if everyone cheers the move of Votto to LF and then he bails the first chance he gets. Or if Votto moves and both his and Alonso's stats aren't up to par. I am sure the FO would then be lambasted for the move.

And this would be fun? I'm afraid it wouldn't be fun for actual Reds fans. IMHO of course.

Bum

OUReds
03-01-2010, 05:27 PM
Here is what we know.... Joey Votto has over a third of a season's experience in playing left field. Joey Votto is faster than Yonder Alonso is. Joey Votto has a better arm than Yonder Alonso does. All of those suggests that Joey Votto would make a much better left fielder than Yonder Alonso will. We also know what Yonder Alonso is an average first baseman in the minors and that is likely to transfer forward to the majors.

And after that whole 1/3rd of a season in the minors he was switched right back to 1st base. All we really know is that he probably wouldn't spike himself out there. Just because he might be better doesn't mean he would be acceptable.

How well Alonso will play 1st base in the majors at this point is nothing more then educated guesswork.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:31 PM
And after that whole 1/3rd of a season in the minors he was switched right back to 1st base. All we really know is that he probably wouldn't spike himself out there. Just because he might be better doesn't mean he would be acceptable.

How well Alonso will play 1st base in the majors at this point is nothing more then educated guesswork.

So, Alonso plays average 1B defense in the minors and that might not translate to MLB? Can you explain the differences between playing 1B in the minors vs playing 1B in MLB? To me, I think his 1B defense would translate directly from the minors to MLB. I would even think that he might improve in MLB as the seasons go by due to more experience at the position.

Bum

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:33 PM
The problem with doug's scenario, and he admits this, is it exists in a vacuum, ignoring Frazier, Francisco and Heisey. For 2010, Votto will get 550+ AB's barring injury and every inning he plays in the field will be at 1B.

1B isn't a competition, it's a filled position.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 05:34 PM
And this would be fun? I'm afraid it wouldn't be fun for actual Reds fans. IMHO of course.

Bum

Yeah, it would be fun to see the reaction. Because sometimes people treat a roster like a video game and not like a game played by humans. Like that Votto's .900+ OPS will translate exactly to LF if he were to move. And that Alonso, due to his pedigree, is a lock to be a masher at 1B. And that it won't make a difference to Votto if he moves for a guy who doesn't pan out, or that he establishes himself as the center of this team and now is being asked to move across the field for someone who hasn't played an inning above AA and only 29 games over A ball.

The Yankees didn't ask Jeter to move for the best player in baseball, yet we want the Reds to move Votto to make room for a guy who hasn't really proven himself in the pros as of yet.

I could see Cincy sitting down with Votto and talking it through if Alonso was absolutely mashing in AAA and there were no other options, but at this stage Joey shouldn't have to worry about this at all.

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:36 PM
The Yankees didn't ask Jeter to move for the best player in baseball, yet we want the Reds to move Votto to make room for a guy who hasn't really proven himself in the pros as of yet.

quoted for absolute truth.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:36 PM
The problem with doug's scenario, and he admits this, is it exists in a vacuum, ignoring Frazier, Francisco and Heisey. For 2010, Votto will get 550+ AB's barring injury and every inning he plays in the field will be at 1B.

1B isn't a competition, it's a filled position.

While I am sure the Reds aren't on the same page as me, Francisco shouldn't enter the conversation at any position until he gets his bat under control. Frazier has versatility that lets him play all over, so even then it wouldn't block him. Heisey likely would be blocked though.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:37 PM
The Yankees didn't ask Jeter to move for the best player in baseball, yet we want the Reds to move Votto to make room for a guy who hasn't really proven himself in the pros as of yet.


That doesn't mean it was the right call either. It also doesn't really apply since Jeter and Arod could both play other positions, while no one really believes that Alonso can.

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:38 PM
While I am sure the Reds aren't on the same page as me, Francisco shouldn't enter the conversation at any position until he gets his bat under control. Frazier has versatility that lets him play all over, so even then it wouldn't block him. Heisey likely would be blocked though.

He's potentially playing LF at AAA this year. Frazier could slot into any opening except CF and C. Heisey has a shot at CF if things go bad for CD AND Stubbs. He's in the conversation. He may not be the first name brought up, but you can be sure they are listing him on a depth chart for both 3B and LF.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 05:42 PM
So, Alonso plays average 1B defense in the minors and that might not translate to MLB? Can you explain the differences between playing 1B in the minors vs playing 1B in MLB? To me, I think his 1B defense would translate directly from the minors to MLB. I would even think that he might improve in MLB as the seasons go by due to more experience at the position.

Bum

Alonso has less then 80 games in the minor leagues so far. Scouting reports on his tools are the only way anyone could possibly project how well he plays defense at this point.

We have an idea of his defensive potential (and when that defensive potential is "he should be adequate at first base" be very afraid), but that's a far, far cry from knowing that he plays an average 1st base in the minors, let alone how well he will play in the majors.

nate
03-01-2010, 05:43 PM
Not until he moved for the 4th time

See? That proves the famous "fourth time's the charm" adage!

:cool:

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:44 PM
Yeah, it would be fun to see the reaction. Because sometimes people treat a roster like a video game and not like a game played by humans. Like that Votto's .900+ OPS will translate exactly to LF if he were to move. And that Alonso, due to his pedigree, is a lock to be a masher at 1B. And that it won't make a difference to Votto if he moves for a guy who doesn't pan out, or that he establishes himself as the center of this team and now is being asked to move across the field for someone who hasn't played an inning above AA and only 29 games over A ball.

The Yankees didn't ask Jeter to move for the best player in baseball, yet we want the Reds to move Votto to make room for a guy who hasn't really proven himself in the pros as of yet.

I could see Cincy sitting down with Votto and talking it through if Alonso was absolutely mashing in AAA and there were no other options, but at this stage Joey shouldn't have to worry about this at all.

I don't think anyone is talking about Votto switching to LF or even thinking about it right now. I suggested that when Alonso was ready to play everyday in MLB that Jockety may change his tune about moving Votto. Until then it is a mute point which is why I think people are reading too much into Jockety's comments.

As for Jeter...I agree with Doug; when A-Rod was acquired Jeter was the second best SS on the Yankees. How long did Jeter pout because A-Rod got so much attention? Best player getting the attention, crazy I say!

In the end, I don't see the fun in watching a Reds prospect fail but to each his own I guess.

Bum

TheNext44
03-01-2010, 05:45 PM
That doesn't mean it was the right call either. It also doesn't really apply since Jeter and Arod could both play other positions, while no one really believes that Alonso can.

Define "play" for me. ;)

Actually, the reason why that move worked, a few years later, was that both of their bats could justify below average defense, no matter where they played. Votto's bat clearly can justify him in LF, even if he is as bad as Manny. We just don't know enough about Alonso, either his offense or defense, to make any judgment.

That's why I agree with you, that given what we know currently, moving Votto to LF makes the most sense. However, it also makes sense to see how Alonso does at other positions, just in case.

Strikes Out Looking
03-01-2010, 05:46 PM
Having Alonso, Heisey, Fransisco, Frazier and the others nipping at the heels of the guys now in the majors is a good problem to have. In fact, I can't remember a time when the Reds have had as many young players and prospects (both pitching and hitting) that were at AAA or in the majors.

Wherever Alonso (and the others play), I'm very excited to see these guys play this year and next.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:47 PM
Alonso has less then 80 games in the minor leagues so far. Scouting reports on his tools are the only way anyone could possibly project how well he plays defense at this point.

We have an idea of his defensive potential (and when that defensive potential is "he should be adequate at first base, be very afraid), but that's a far, far cry from knowing that he plays an average 1st base in the minors, let alone how well he will play in the majors.

He played 1B in college...how is playing 1B any different at MLB than it is in the minors and college? Matter of fact, how hard is it to play 1B anyway? So, you think Alonso may just be a DH? What expert has suggested that?

Bum

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:48 PM
Define "play" for me. ;)

Actually, the reason why that move worked, a few years later, was that both of their bats could justify below average defense, no matter where they played. Votto's bat clearly can justify him in LF, even if he is as bad as Manny. We just don't know enough about Alonso, either his offense or defense, to make any judgment.

That's why I agree with you, that given what we know currently, moving Votto to LF makes the most sense. However, it also makes sense to see how Alonso does at other positions, just in case.

We know, based on scouting, that Alonso is going to be a very bad left fielder because he is very slow. Third base may be an option I guess, but when does he get time to play there? Are they going to split time with Francisco in Louisville? What about Frazier ever getting a start at 3B down there?

reds44
03-01-2010, 05:48 PM
Here is what we know.... Joey Votto has over a third of a season's experience in playing left field. Joey Votto is faster than Yonder Alonso is. Joey Votto has a better arm than Yonder Alonso does. All of those suggests that Joey Votto would make a much better left fielder than Yonder Alonso will. We also know what Yonder Alonso is an average first baseman in the minors and that is likely to transfer forward to the majors.
Joey Votto is also an established, big league 1st baseman. You can play Alonso in LF for the entire minor league season and see what he can do out there. It makes no sense to make your hands down, best player move positions in the majors when you can have your prospect (which is all Alonso) screw around trying new positions in the minor league.

You make Alonso move, you don't make Votto move.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 05:49 PM
He played 1B in college...how is playing 1B any different at MLB than it is in the minors and college? Matter of fact, how hard is it to play 1B anyway? So, you think Alonso may just be a DH? What expert has suggested that?

Bum

I missed the part where I claimed Alonso may just be a DH. I'm saying his defense at 1st base is an unknown at this point. Joey's is not.

reds44
03-01-2010, 05:50 PM
We know, based on scouting, that Alonso is going to be a very bad left fielder because he is very slow. Third base may be an option I guess, but when does he get time to play there? Are they going to split time with Francisco in Louisville? What about Frazier ever getting a start at 3B down there?
No, you don't know. You have no idea what kind of LF or 3rd baseman Alonso would make.

You don't have to have good speed not to be a butcher in LF.

TheNext44
03-01-2010, 05:50 PM
Not until he moved for the 4th time

The Reds won the Pennant in 1970, after Rose moved to RF, and then again in 1972, after he moved to LF. They also started winning the first year that they moved him to the OF. Can't say those moves didn't help the ballclub win.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:51 PM
Joey Votto is also an established, big league 1st baseman. You can play Alonso in LF for the entire minor league season and see what he can do out there. It makes no sense to make your hands down, best player move positions in the majors when you can have your prospect (which is all Alonso) screw around trying new positions in the minor league.

You make Alonso move, you don't make Votto move.
It makes perfect sense to give Votto time out there in spring, when it doesn't matter. So if Alonso bursts onto the scene in July you can make a decision and Votto has some experience there in a recent season (last played LF in 2007). If the Reds are not just giving us lip service on the situation with Alonso, then they really need to take a strong look at Votto to LF because it makes the absolute most sense of any other scenario (Heisey/Frazier/Francisco in LF.... not likely to be as valuable as Votto/Alonso manning LF/1B).

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 05:52 PM
I missed the part where I claimed Alonso may just be a DH. I'm saying his defense at 1st base is an unknown at this point.

If he might not be able to play reasonable defense at 1B then what can he do? I was just trying to be logical in following along with what you were posting. How about answering the questions that I asked? What is different about 1B defense between College/Minor Leagues and MLB?

Bum

TRF
03-01-2010, 05:53 PM
The Reds won the Pennant in 1970, after Rose moved to RF, and then again in 1972, after he moved to LF. They also started winning the first year that they moved him to the OF. Can't say those moves didn't help the ballclub win.

Maybe. How many times did he move for a guy that has played 80ish minor league games in his professional career?

reds44
03-01-2010, 05:53 PM
It makes perfect sense to give Votto time out there in spring, when it doesn't matter. So if Alonso bursts onto the scene in July you can make a decision and Votto has some experience there in a recent season (last played LF in 2007). If the Reds are not just giving us lip service on the situation with Alonso, then they really need to take a strong look at Votto to LF because it makes the absolute most sense of any other scenario (Heisey/Frazier/Francisco in LF.... not likely to be as valuable as Votto/Alonso manning LF/1B).
Or, you play Alonso in LF all season, so he has just as much/more expierence in the OF as Votto does.

And no, it doesn't. If you move Votto to LF you make your defense worse at two positions. If you leave Votto where he is, and move around Alonso, you're not trying to fix a problem that you don't already have.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:55 PM
No, you don't know. You have no idea what kind of LF or 3rd baseman Alonso would make.

You don't have to have good speed not to be a butcher in LF.

Alonso doesn't just not have good speed, he doesn't have average speed or probably even below average speed. He is probably a 30 runner. He is like a 4.6 guy to first base. As a lefty. That is SLOW. Like Sean Casey slow. You better run the most perfect routes to the ball as soon as it leaves the bat to overcome that kind of speed and given that he has never once played the outfield, I doubt that happens. So yeah, I don't know what kind of left fielder Alonso would make, and I don't know what kind of Major League hitter I would make.... but based on what I do know, its a very good chance that Alonso will be a terrible left fielder and that I would be the worst major league hitter of all time. I don't need to have done either to know both of those are extremely likely.

TheNext44
03-01-2010, 05:57 PM
Or, you play Alonso in LF all season, so he has just as much/more expierence in the OF as Votto does.

And no, it doesn't. If you move Votto to LF you make your defense worse at two positions. If you leave Votto where he is, and move around Alonso, you're not trying to fix a problem that you don't already have.

But that's assuming Votto will be below average in LF. Remember he was below average at 1B when he first came up, and now is at least average, getting close to above average.

Seeing how he worked hard to improve his defense at 1B, I see no reason to think that he can't do the same at LF.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:57 PM
Or, you play Alonso in LF all season, so he has just as much/more expierence in the OF as Votto does.

And no, it doesn't. If you move Votto to LF you make your defense worse at two positions. If you leave Votto where he is, and move around Alonso, you're not trying to fix a problem that you don't already have.

It doesn't matter how much experience Alonso gets in left field, he will never be nearly as good as Votto out there because he can't run close to as well. And yes, the defense may get worse at two positions, but the question is this: Is the slight downgrade at 1B and Votto's defense in LF more of a downgrade than Votto at 1B and the absolute worst left fielder in baseball (which is likely what Alonso would be if he played there)? Making two spots worse defensively doesn't mean that its making the teams defense worse overall versus just one spot worse if that one spot is tremendously worse.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 05:57 PM
If he might not be able to play reasonable defense at 1B then what can he do? I was just trying to be logical in following along with what you were posting. How about answering the questions that I asked? What is different about 1B defense between College/Minor Leagues and MLB?

Bum

In one you are facing college hitters, the other you are...not.

In one you are receiving throws from college level pitchers and fielders, making it difficult to evaluate how well you would react to pro level fielders.

Pressure.

Again, I'm not claiming he can't play an acceptable 1st base. I have no earthly clue, which is my point. We just don't know yet.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 05:58 PM
In one you are facing college hitters, the other you are...not.

In one you are receiving throws from college level pitchers and fielders, making it difficult to evaluate how well you would react to pro level fielders.

Pressure.

Again, we I'm not claiming he can't play an acceptable 1st base. I have no earthly clue, which is my point. We just don't know yet.

You don't know yet. The people in power know. Scouts know.

reds44
03-01-2010, 05:59 PM
But that's assuming Votto will be below average in LF. Remember he was below average at 1B when he first came up, and now is at least average, getting close to above average.

Seeing how he worked hard to improve his defense at 1B, I see no reason to think that he can't do the same at LF.
So you're going to reward a guy who worked out to massively improve his defense, but moving his position and making him do it again? That makes sense.

Caveat Emperor
03-01-2010, 05:59 PM
Here is what we know.... Joey Votto has over a third of a season's experience in playing left field. Joey Votto is faster than Yonder Alonso is. Joey Votto has a better arm than Yonder Alonso does. All of those suggests that Joey Votto would make a much better left fielder than Yonder Alonso will. We also know what Yonder Alonso is an average first baseman in the minors and that is likely to transfer forward to the majors.

You continue to ignore the point being articulated by several people on this thread, though: these are real people we're talking about here, not players on a fantasy roster that can play anywhere they qualify at.

What is Joey Votto's reaction to playing left? Does playing out of position impact his performance at the plate? Does playing out of position make him less likely to remain a Cincinnati Red if other teams want to let him move back to the position he's most comfortable at? What happens if the Reds move Votto and Yonder Alonso comes up and bombs as Brandon Larson v. 2.0? Does any of this make Votto unhappy enough to ask for a trade? What would the clubhouse be like if a player being asked to be a leader becomes a malcontent?

Here's what we really know: Joey Votto is an elite hitter playing capable defense at 1st base. Yonder Alonso hasn't seen a pitch above AA ball (and, frankly, hasn't played as well as Joey Votto did when he was the same age and at the same level).

You don't mess with Votto until Alonso is, literally, beating down the door to the majors with both fists at AAA. And, even then, you figure out if Alonso can play someplace else first (since he's in the minors and can tinker with his game without impacting the major league product) before you even consider moving Joey Votto.

Incidentally, this is why you should be careful about drafting players who are so position-limited in the high rounds of the draft.

reds44
03-01-2010, 06:00 PM
You don't know yet. The people in power know. Scouts know.
But "the people in power" also think it's a good idea to move Alonso to LF/3B and leave Votto alone.

So you don't know it's the right move, but they know.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 06:00 PM
You don't know yet. The people in power know. Scouts know.

And all the scouts agree? What happens when the scouts disagree? Which is right? I'm not sure the scout's opinions on Yonder's defensive ability are..homogeneous.

reds44
03-01-2010, 06:00 PM
You continue to ignore the point being articulated by several people on this thread, though: these are real people we're talking about here, not players on a fantasy roster that can play anywhere they qualify at.

What is Joey Votto's reaction to playing left? Does playing out of position impact his performance at the plate? Does playing out of position make him less likely to remain a Cincinnati Red if other teams want to let him move back to the position he's most comfortable at? What happens if the Reds move Votto and Yonder Alonso comes up and bombs as Brandon Larson v. 2.0?

Here's what we really know: Joey Votto is an elite hitter playing capable defense at 1st base. Yonder Alonso hasn't seen a pitch above AA ball (and, frankly, hasn't played as well as Joey Votto did when he was the same age and at the same level).

You don't mess with Votto until Alonso is, literally, beating down the door to the majors with both fists at AAA. And, even then, you figure out if Alonso can play someplace else first (since he's in the minors and can tinker with his game without impacting the major league product) before you even consider moving Joey Votto.

Incidentally, this is why you should be careful about drafting players who are so position-limited in the high rounds of the draft.
Moving Joey Votto to LF, can do no good for Joey Votto. Only bad can come out of it for him.

reds44
03-01-2010, 06:01 PM
And all the scouts agree? What happens when the scouts disagree? Which is right?
They just know.

TRF
03-01-2010, 06:01 PM
I agree with everyone that says Alonso's days in the org are limited. That's why IMO he never steps foot off 1B. He plays every inning at 1B, be it at AA or AAA. You let him be as comfortable as possible in the field and let him rake at the plate, and then you get the most you can for him as you have maximized his value.

And there isn't thing one wrong with that idea.

Bumstead
03-01-2010, 06:03 PM
In one you are facing college hitters, the other you are...not.

In one you are receiving throws from college level pitchers and fielders, making it difficult to evaluate how well you would react to pro level fielders.

Pressure.

Again, I'm not claiming he can't play an acceptable 1st base. I have no earthly clue, which is my point. We just don't know yet.

Well, I'm still confused by what you are saying. In college they use aluminum bats and the balls jumps off the bat a lot faster. In college I am left to assume that the fielders aren't as accurate with their throws as they are in MLB; this also applies to the minors. In college and the minors the fields aren't as well manicured as MLB which would make it tougher to field and catch errant throws...I still don't see how Alonso's 1B defense in the minors/college will not translate to MLB? I think it will and really, I don't remember anyone ever questioning someone's 1B defense translating from the minors/college to MLB.

Bum

Caveat Emperor
03-01-2010, 06:04 PM
Moving Joey Votto to LF, can do no good for Joey Votto. Only bad can come out of it for him.

As far as I'm concerned, if Yonder Alonso is so good that he's worth moving a team's best player to bring up, then the Reds should have no trouble trading him to fill a spot they really need.

Trade from surplus to acquire need. I look at Yonder Alonso and I see a giant, big, heaping help of surplus.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 06:07 PM
Players who get their feelings hurt over being asked to do something for the good of the team need to get over themselves. They get paid to play, not fill out the lineup cards. What is going to happen is going to happen and we aren't going to change that. But if Joey Votto is going to fall apart because someone asks him to play left field then I really hope we just trade him because if something slightly out of the norm happens to him he is going to just crumble.

Big Klu
03-01-2010, 06:08 PM
The Reds won the Pennant in 1970, after Rose moved to RF, and then again in 1972, after he moved to LF. They also started winning the first year that they moved him to the OF. Can't say those moves didn't help the ballclub win.

However, that move also served to remove a borderline defensive butcher (Rose) from 2B, and replace him with an eventual two-time Gold Glove winner at 2B (Tommy Helms). Not the same ballpark, IMO.

Also, Rose threw a fit in 1966 when the Reds moved him from 2B to 3B to make room for Helms--who was the eventual NL Rookie of the Year in '66. The "experiment" lasted only 16 games before Rose was moved back to 2B and Helms to 3B--even though Tommy's bat was too light for the hot corner and his glovework at 2B was lightyears ahead of Pete's.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 06:09 PM
As far as I'm concerned, if Yonder Alonso is so good that he's worth moving a team's best player to bring up, then the Reds should have no trouble trading him to fill a spot they really need.

Trade from surplus to acquire need. I look at Yonder Alonso and I see a giant, big, heaping help of surplus.

And what if you can't get fair value in return because you can't play Alonso at the big league level because Joey will cry and throw a fit about it? If Alonso is indeed that good, then you keep him and move Votto to LF.

lollipopcurve
03-01-2010, 06:11 PM
You don't mess with Votto until Alonso is, literally, beating down the door to the majors with both fists at AAA. And, even then, you figure out if Alonso can play someplace else first (since he's in the minors and can tinker with his game without impacting the major league product) before you even consider moving Joey Votto.

Agree all the way. Alonso's going to have to hit big in AAA before he's of any real value to the Reds. It would be a huge mistake to ask Votto to move until Alonso has proven himself at least that much.

edabbs44
03-01-2010, 06:13 PM
And what if you can't get fair value in return because you can't play Alonso at the big league level because Joey will cry and throw a fit about it? If Alonso is indeed that good, then you keep him and move Votto to LF.

Or maybe Joey mashes in LF and walks in a couple of years b/c he has zero loyalty to the organization.

Big Klu
03-01-2010, 06:14 PM
Alonso doesn't just not have good speed, he doesn't have average speed or probably even below average speed. He is probably a 30 runner. He is like a 4.6 guy to first base. As a lefty. That is SLOW. Like Sean Casey slow. You better run the most perfect routes to the ball as soon as it leaves the bat to overcome that kind of speed and given that he has never once played the outfield, I doubt that happens. So yeah, I don't know what kind of left fielder Alonso would make, and I don't know what kind of Major League hitter I would make.... but based on what I do know, its a very good chance that Alonso will be a terrible left fielder and that I would be the worst major league hitter of all time. I don't need to have done either to know both of those are extremely likely.

If his speed is that poor, and he is that limited in the field, then ship him to the AL ASAP. Sounds like a DH to me.



As far as I'm concerned, if Yonder Alonso is so good that he's worth moving a team's best player to bring up, then the Reds should have no trouble trading him to fill a spot they really need.

Trade from surplus to acquire need. I look at Yonder Alonso and I see a giant, big, heaping help of surplus.

I felt from the moment he was drafted that he would be Cincinnati's version of Matt LaPorta. I have said all along that I would be surprised if he ever plays an inning in a Reds uniform.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 06:17 PM
Agree all the way. Alonso's going to have to hit big in AAA before he's of any real value to the Reds. It would be a huge mistake to ask Votto to move until Alonso has proven himself at least that much.

The problem is, if you wait until July when Alonso is hitting .300/.400/.550 in AAA, then you still don't get a chance to bring up Alonso and you have to make the decision in the offseason again, where if you get Votto some time now you may be able to make that decision in July and help the Reds at that point.

dougdirt
03-01-2010, 06:18 PM
If his speed is that poor, and he is that limited in the field, then ship him to the AL ASAP. Sounds like a DH to me.
You don't need speed to play first base. He doesn't play with a glove made of metal, he just can't run fast.


Or maybe Joey mashes in LF and walks in a couple of years b/c he has zero loyalty to the organization.
He might do that anyways even if you keep him at first base.

Caveat Emperor
03-01-2010, 06:23 PM
And what if you can't get fair value in return because you can't play Alonso at the big league level because Joey will cry and throw a fit about it? If Alonso is indeed that good, then you keep him and move Votto to LF.

If you can't get fair value for Alonso, and he can't play anywhere else but first base, frankly I'm of the mind you take less than fair value or package him with other prospects to get what you need.

But, that's just me. I don't see the sense is tinkering one iota with the best hitter your organization has produced in almost 20 years and the guy you are, allegedly, building your team around. Especially when you'll be asking him to move to a position he's almost a lock to provide below-average defense at.

Take what you can get for Alonso and move on.

lollipopcurve
03-01-2010, 06:24 PM
The problem is, if you wait until July when Alonso is hitting .300/.400/.550 in AAA, then you still don't get a chance to bring up Alonso and you have to make the decision in the offseason again, where if you get Votto some time now you may be able to make that decision in July and help the Reds at that point.

Until Alonso does that, the team should not go about asking Votto to stop trying to make himself a Gold Glove first baseman.

What you fail to see is that there is no guarantee Alonso will perform as well as you predict. What if they ask Votto to start working in LF and Alonso goes .270/.350/.440 in AAA? The organization would have made two blunders in one -- alienating Votto and misevaluating Alonso. That's a disaster, which is a lot worse than "a good problem to have," which is what they'd have if Alonso is as good in 2010 as you think he will be.

TheNext44
03-01-2010, 06:24 PM
If his speed is that poor, and he is that limited in the field, then ship him to the AL ASAP. Sounds like a DH to me.




I felt from the moment he was drafted that he would be Cincinnati's version of Matt LaPorta. I have said all along that I would be surprised if he ever plays an inning in a Reds uniform.

Agree.

If he can help bring a player like CC or Holiday, like Brett Wallace did, he'd be considered a great pick. Not sure he can, but that should be part of the plan imo.

westofyou
03-01-2010, 06:24 PM
The Reds won the Pennant in 1970, after Rose moved to RF, and then again in 1972, after he moved to LF. They also started winning the first year that they moved him to the OF. Can't say those moves didn't help the ballclub win.

Pete was moved to LF in 1967 and then RF in 1968 and they didn't win until 1970, so it wasn't as slam bam as you'd like to believe it was.

OUReds
03-01-2010, 06:30 PM
I still don't see how Alonso's 1B defense in the minors/college will not translate to MLB? I think it will and really, I don't remember anyone ever questioning someone's 1B defense translating from the minors/college to MLB.

Bum

And yet, it happens. Who has been the worst fielding 1st baseman the past few years? Prince Fielder? Richie Sexton? Kevin Millar?

Everyone of them had some scouting reports out of the draft saying he should be "adequate at best" or "should be just fine" at 1st base.

These are the same type of reports we are getting on Alonso. I'd like to actually see him play an adequate first base, or for that matter hit above AA, before we talk about displacing the best player on the team.

TheNext44
03-01-2010, 06:42 PM
Pete was moved to LF in 1967 and then RF in 1968 and they didn't win until 1970, so it wasn't as slam bam as you'd like to believe it was.


However, that move also served to remove a borderline defensive butcher (Rose) from 2B, and replace him with an eventual two-time Gold Glove winner at 2B (Tommy Helms). Not the same ballpark, IMO.

Also, Rose threw a fit in 1966 when the Reds moved him from 2B to 3B to make room for Helms--who was the eventual NL Rookie of the Year in '66. The "experiment" lasted only 16 games before Rose was moved back to 2B and Helms to 3B--even though Tommy's bat was too light for the hot corner and his glovework at 2B was lightyears ahead of Pete's.

Agree there is no real comparison to Rose/Helms/Geronimo/everyone else he moved for and Alonso/Votto. Just pointing out that the move did help the Reds win. Maybe not a World Series, but it helped them win.

_Sir_Charles_
03-01-2010, 06:49 PM
Not to turn it into the Beckham/Alonso debate again, but it really does make you wonder what they were thinking....

To be fair, Votto hadn't turned into "Vottomatic" at the time of that draft. I don't think anybody thought he'd be as good as he is as QUICKLY as he has.

membengal
03-01-2010, 07:37 PM
Having Alonso, Heisey, Fransisco, Frazier and the others nipping at the heels of the guys now in the majors is a good problem to have. In fact, I can't remember a time when the Reds have had as many young players and prospects (both pitching and hitting) that were at AAA or in the majors.

Wherever Alonso (and the others play), I'm very excited to see these guys play this year and next.

1986 - 1989 saw Larkin, Stillwell, Daniels, O'Neill, Jones, Browning, Dibble, Sabo I think. And they had picked up Charlton to boot, and he was coming although not from entirely within the system. Fun times to be a Reds fan with all that young talent kicking around the minors and forcing the issue in Cincy. And just before that time period ED broke in, establishing himself in CF as the other young players kicked the door down to join him.

HokieRed
03-01-2010, 07:44 PM
If Alonso puts up the kind of numbers in AAA that I expect he will, then Votto should be told to move to LF and like it for the good of the team. Given the fact the team will control Alonso's contract for twice as long as Votto's, it will be quite obvious which one to trade if it comes to that.

Eric_the_Red
03-01-2010, 07:48 PM
Perhaps we should pause this thread for 300 days or so, until it will actually matter. I don't see Alonso as a regular member of this team until next year at the earliest. Too much can happen between now and then (injuries, trade, performance issues, etc.).

Benihana
03-01-2010, 08:11 PM
If Alonso puts up the kind of numbers in AAA that I expect he will, then Votto should be told to move to LF and like it for the good of the team. Given the fact the team will control Alonso's contract for twice as long as Votto's, it will be quite obvious which one to trade if it comes to that.

Disagree. Bird in the hand.

Delmon Young was the #1 overall pick in the draft, consensus top prospect, had a career .880 OPS in the minor leagues, and what has he done in the big leagues?

I love prospects, and have probably spent more time worrying about the minor league system in the last decade than I have about the big club. But if you have a 26 year old All-Star with the character of a Votto, you don't trade him to make room for a prospect, period.

Mario-Rijo
03-01-2010, 08:28 PM
Disagree. Bird in the hand.

Delmon Young was the #1 overall pick in the draft, consensus top prospect, had a career .880 OPS in the minor leagues, and what has he done in the big leagues?

I love prospects, and have probably spent more time worrying about the minor league system in the last decade than I have about the big club. But if you have a 26 year old All-Star with the character of a Votto, you don't trade him to make room for a prospect, period.

Absolutely

westofyou
03-01-2010, 08:38 PM
The trick of course is making the choice.

Adcock or Klu?

McCovey or Cepeda?

Lee or Tony?

Mark or Rafael?

It's not a bad spot to be in.

Will M
03-01-2010, 08:38 PM
1986 - 1989 saw Larkin, Stillwell, Daniels, O'Neill, Jones, Browning, Dibble, Sabo I think. And they had picked up Charlton to boot, and he was coming although not from entirely within the system. Fun times to be a Reds fan with all that young talent kicking around the minors and forcing the issue in Cincy. And just before that time period ED broke in, establishing himself in CF as the other young players kicked the door down to join him.

the fun times are a comin back!

i lost interest in the Reds after Marge fired Davey Johnson. The whole time Lindner owned the team i rarely watched. i started being a fan again when Bob C bought the team. the current talent on the big league team combined with the prospects at AA/AAA makes me think we will see another period of the Reds putting a winning team on the field for a while. when the team had its last good run from the mid 80s to the mid 90s they only made the playoffs twice. most of that was before the NL was split into three divisions. i believe if we had the same setup then as now the team would have won the NL central ~5 times.

just dreaming of what the starting pitching of Bailey-Cueto-Volquez-Chapman-Leake-Wood can do has me excited. add Votto, Bruce & the offensive prospects and we are gonna see a lot of winning real soon.

flyer85
03-01-2010, 08:58 PM
Not to turn it into the Beckham/Alonso debate again, but it really does make you wonder what they were thinking....
or maybe they weren't

HokieRed
03-01-2010, 09:07 PM
I think you keep the better player. Period. Who that is remains to be seen. Right now obviously it's Votto. But in a year that may look different. Frank Robinson was once a prospect, so was Willy Mays and Roberto Clemente. I'm sure the Reds, Giants, and Pirates all had incumbents too, but then those guys made it clear you had to organize the team around them. So preferring incumbents over prospects as some kind of unalterable rule looks pretty dubious.

Benihana
03-01-2010, 09:26 PM
I think you keep the better player. Period. Who that is remains to be seen. Right now obviously it's Votto. But in a year that may look different. Frank Robinson was once a prospect, so was Willy Mays and Roberto Clemente. I'm sure the Reds, Giants, and Pirates all had incumbents too, but then those guys made it clear you had to organize the team around them. So preferring incumbents over prospects as some kind of unalterable rule looks pretty dubious.

Huh?

I don't think anyone is arguing for "preferring incumbents over prospects as some kind of unalterable rule." However, when you have an incumbent who just turned 26 and has OPSd .924 in over 1000 MAJOR LEAGUE at-bats, I will take that incumbent over any prospect in the game, let alone a guy like Yonder Alonso. I don't care if Alonso goes all Jay Bruce in AAA, I'm not trading Joey Votto for him. If I can play them both at the same time, I will. Otherwise, unless Votto can fetch an unbelievable king's ransom back, Alonso is trade bait.

The Reds time to contend is the next three years. Joey Votto is a critical piece that fits into that timeline. You don't trade him to make room for a prospect, period.

WebScorpion
03-01-2010, 09:49 PM
Wow! It seemed like such an innocuous quote...
All he said was they're not 'asking' Joey to move and they're trying Alonso in different places to see how he looks there. Standard stuff IMO. Alonso hasn't really proven anything...he's not even knocking ON the door, much less knocking it down. If/When Alonso is raking at AAA, then you can address this issue...for first basemen the answer is usually to trade one of them, they don't normally transfer to other positions well. :dunno:

Now, the real kicker is Votto...he's also the kind of guy who might come to camp next year with an outfielders glove and say "Hey Skip! How's about I try left field for a while?" They may never ask him, but he's the kind of leader that will know what's best for the team.

I really dig that Alonso doesn't want to leave the organization...that says a lot to me. :thumbup: I think he's a smart kid, who knows what it takes to be a Major Leaguer and I think he can see that this team is put together well enough to contend for a ring or two in the future.

gm
03-01-2010, 11:03 PM
The trick of course is making the choice.

Adcock or Klu?

McCovey or Cepeda?

Lee or Tony?

Mark or Rafael?

It's not a bad spot to be in.

Casey or Konerko? I love Sean but...really?

The day "way over" Yonder was drafted I said he was a BPA to be traded when his value was ripe

No reason to change that take. Alonzo is a DH, Cincy is a NL team

Chip R
03-01-2010, 11:18 PM
Players who get their feelings hurt over being asked to do something for the good of the team need to get over themselves. They get paid to play, not fill out the lineup cards. What is going to happen is going to happen and we aren't going to change that. But if Joey Votto is going to fall apart because someone asks him to play left field then I really hope we just trade him because if something slightly out of the norm happens to him he is going to just crumble.

Easier said than done.

HokieRed
03-01-2010, 11:32 PM
Prediction: Alonso will be a better player than Votto, for whatever team he plays for.

westofyou
03-01-2010, 11:46 PM
Easier said than done.

In a Frank Merriwell world everyone knows there is no I in Team.

Benihana
03-01-2010, 11:54 PM
In a Frank Merriwell world everyone knows there is no I in Team.

But as MJ said, there is an I in Win. :p:

Benihana
03-01-2010, 11:58 PM
Prediction: Alonso will be a better player than Votto, for whatever team he plays for.

Maybe, but if I'm playing the odds I'm betting on Votto.

Alonso, age 22 in AA: .829 OPS in 105 ABs.
Votto, age 22 in AA: .955 OPS in 508 ABs.

2009 Alonso: .837 OPS split between A+ and AA
2009 Votto: .981 OPS in the MAJOR LEAGUES.

IF Alonso reaches his potential (a big if), at best he might OPS .980 in the major leagues one day.
Joey Votto just did that, last year, at age 25.

Caveat Emperor
03-02-2010, 12:03 AM
Prediction: Alonso will be a better player than Votto, for whatever team he plays for.

Bold prediction, considering that when Votto was Alonso's age, he already had a full season of dominance at AA under his belt and was on a rocket straight to the bigs.

HokieRed
03-02-2010, 12:07 AM
I'm a big fan of Joey Votto; always have been. I'd like to see him in LF with Yonder Alonso on 1b because I believe that is what gives us the best chance to win a championship. Simple as that.

OnBaseMachine
03-02-2010, 12:42 AM
Reds' Alonso trying other positions
With first base taken by Votto, move might be in order
By Mark Sheldon / MLB.com

03/01/10 6:20 PM EST

GOODYEAR, Ariz. -- Reds first-base prospect Yonder Alonso's supersized hitting ability should pave his express trip to the Major Leagues. It might have by now if there wasn't one very sturdy obstacle blocking the 22-year-old's path.

It's only the best hitter on the team and a fellow first baseman in Joey Votto.

This was a dilemma seen coming from the very moment Alonso was selected seventh overall in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft and signed to a five-year, $4.55 million Major League contract. At the time, Votto was still a rookie but a successful one, but Cincinnati has a Draft policy of taking the best available player and not selecting according to need.

Alonso reached Triple-A last season and his Major League promotion is only a matter of time -- if he can find a place to play. To that end, the Reds have worked him out this spring at third base and both corner-outfield spots. It's dispelled the common speculation that when Alonso was eventually called up, it would be Votto whom would be moved to left field.

"It will take some time to figure it out," Cincinnati general manager Walt Jocketty said. "That's why we want to see [Alonso] at different positions. He's got a great bat and Joey is going to be at first base for a long time. I don't see moving Joey."

Eager and willing to do anything to realize his dream, Alonso is willing to depart the only position he's ever really played. He played some third base, but mostly first base, at the Univ. of Miami. Since joining the Reds organization, he's exclusively played first base.

Alonso heeded an organization request to come to camp in better shape. He added more upper body muscle and says he's become more nimble to get better range. He played third base and left field during winter ball and in the Arizona Fall League.

"It doesn't matter where I play as long as I play," Alonso said. "As long as I get a shot and prove to the guys I can play there. In my head, I know I can play. I just want to get my shot. I'm doing everything, and they're trying everything, so I can [get to the Majors]."

The Reds even kicked around the idea of trying Alonso behind the plate and let him catch in a couple of bullpen sessions.

There were no immediate plans to stick Alonso in the middle of the battle for the vacancy in left field.

"We just wanted to expose him to some different positions and see if he feels comfortable," Jocketty said. "We'll see how it goes. If it goes well enough, we'll put him in some games at different positions. It would just make him more valuable to us if he can play other places. He'll get some playing time at those positions in Triple-A if he shows he can do that."

Lots of friends

Alonso has yet to reach the Majors, but he has no shortage of big leaguers who are a phone call away when he needs advice. Some are even closer.

During offseasons before and after turning pro, Alonso has worked out with friend, fellow Miami resident and Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez. Alonso also spent a couple of weeks this past winter with Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira.

"Imagine the conversations," Alonso said. "I was picking his brain about first base. He gave me a routine and everything. I just got after it."

During winter ball in Puerto Rico, Alonso had a locker between Nationals catcher Ivan Rodriguez and Mets infielder Alex Cora.

Little did Rodriguez and Cora know, they would have an awestruck but diligent kid tagging after them wherever they went.

"They said 'Can you shut up?' because I was always asking questions like, 'How do you do this' and 'What do you think of that?'" Alonso said. "Or it was, 'What's your routine for BP?' At the end of the day, they probably respected me more because I wanted to learn. I wasn't some first-round guy that didn't care or felt it didn't matter. I came out and wanted to learn every single day.

"I know that I've been spoiled. I definitely don't take it for granted. I get to meet all of these guys and play baseball with all of them and just hang out with them. The coolest thing is seeing how they are as a person over a baseball player."

Of all the big leaguers Alonso has befriended and learned from, some of the most valuable advice has come from the one guy who would seem to have the most reason to be worried -- Votto.

Yet instead of being standoffish and secretive in the name of competition or turf warfare, Votto has been the 180-degree opposite.

"He's a great baseball player and probably the best on the team right now. But he's a good person at heart," Alonso said. "He cares about people and he cares about you. It's really tough to find guys like that, especially at the same position. Maybe they might not talk to you as much. But he's always like, 'Come on, let's go.' He opened his arms the first day I was here.

"I'm always trying to learn from him. He's really good about it. I was like, 'Wow, I can't believe he's so open.' He's a great teacher. He's always been like, 'You have to do this,' or 'Get here on time, wear your uniform the right way,' -- all of those things that go a long way."

Why would Votto help the guy seeking his job? For starters, he doesn't view there to be an awkward situation, or even a situation, that should draw attention. He's just one teammate helping another.

"He's trying to do his job and I'm trying to do mine," Votto said. "There are 30 teams and tons of first basemen. Obviously, I want to play for the Reds and he wants to play for the Reds. We've got time. He's not in the Major Leagues yet. Hopefully he will get there. When he does, that's when we'll figure it out. Right now, I treat everybody the exact same way. Nobody gets different treatment."

Getting comfortable

Because he signed late in the summer of 2008, Alonso was limited to six games at Class A Sarasota that season. His first full professional year came last season, and it was an advanced learning experience.

Alonso started at high Class A again and reached Double-A Carolina, hitting a combined .300 with nine home runs, 52 RBIs, a .374 on-base percentage and a .464 slugging percentage. In June, he missed two months on Carolina's disabled list after breaking the hamate bone in his right hand, which required surgery to fix.

The lost at-bats were made up at the end of the year. Alonso played five games in the playoffs for Triple-A Louisville and then moved on to the Arizona Fall League before going to winter ball.

"I definitely feel a lot better than last year," Alonso said. "Last year, everything was new. It was frustrating even with the guys or on the field and how they play. It was hard. Maybe last year I didn't take as many risks. This year, I'll be like, 'Let's go for it,' like I did in college."

Inside the Reds' clubhouse last spring, Alonso largely kept to himself and tried very hard not to make much noise. He was guarded during media interviews and careful not to be controversial.

The difference is obvious to any Alonso observers during this camp. He's seems more comfortable in his own skin, more willing to talk and very easygoing. Friendships have been formed throughout the room, especially within the large Latin, Spanish-speaking contingent. When there is a group gathered talking and laughing, Alonso is often right in the middle of it.

"Last year, I was probably at my locker 95 percent of the time," Alonso said. "This year, I'm hanging out with the guys more. The guys call me and we hang out, especially the Latin guys. My mom is in town and she'll make Latin food and they'll say, 'Hey, bring me some.' It's a good conversation starter. You just get in there and talk about food. We talk about other things, and before you know it, we're talking about baseball. I'm getting to know the guys and learning from the guys. It's good."

How will this turn out?

If Alonso is more at ease with himself, it's not a leap to believe he could be even more comfortable in the batter's box. That could make life harder on opposing pitchers, which in turn could make a decision harder for the Reds' front office about what to do with this gifted hitter -- especially if Votto isn't being relocated to another spot.

Coming into this season, Alonso was ranked the organization's No. 2 prospect by Baseball America and No. 30 in the game overall by MLB.com. The Reds have only two true first basemen in camp -- Votto and Alonso. It's likely that Alonso will see time as the designated hitter during spring games.

"I remember coming up as a kid when [the Giants] had Willie McCovey and Orlando Cepeda on the same team," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "Both of them are in the Hall of Fame. They ended up moving one of them to the outfield."

True, but after several years, Cepeda was traded by San Francisco. There was a time in the early 1970s when the Reds had two good young first basemen in Tony Perez and Lee May on the roster. Eventually, May was traded to the Astros in the deal that brought Joe Morgan.

"That's what happens. You hope not," Baker said. "The options are pretty good if and when that time comes."

One way or another, Alonso's time in the Majors is right around the corner.

http://cincinnati.reds.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100301&content_id=8640032&vkey=news_cin&fext=.jsp&c_id=cin

kaldaniels
03-02-2010, 01:29 AM
In response to the Sheldon article OBM posted...am I wrong or did YA not reach AAA last year? Someone posted a week or so ago and was giving Sheldon a hard time and I defended Marc...but enough is enough.

Plus Plus
03-02-2010, 02:12 AM
Alonso was called up very briefly for the AAA playoff series against Durham. He appeared in 4 games and had an OPS of .916 across a whopping 16 AB's (17 PA's).

TheNext44
03-02-2010, 02:32 AM
Prediction: Alonso will be a better player than Votto, for whatever team he plays for.

Well, Alonso is currently considered a better prospect than when Votto was at the same stage. If I remember correctly, in the 2007, before he was called up in Sept. and went on a rampage, many had doubts that he'd be even an average MLB 1B.

Ron Madden
03-02-2010, 04:57 AM
You continue to ignore the point being articulated by several people on this thread, though: these are real people we're talking about here, not players on a fantasy roster that can play anywhere they qualify at.

What is Joey Votto's reaction to playing left? Does playing out of position impact his performance at the plate? Does playing out of position make him less likely to remain a Cincinnati Red if other teams want to let him move back to the position he's most comfortable at? What happens if the Reds move Votto and Yonder Alonso comes up and bombs as Brandon Larson v. 2.0? Does any of this make Votto unhappy enough to ask for a trade? What would the clubhouse be like if a player being asked to be a leader becomes a malcontent?

Here's what we really know: Joey Votto is an elite hitter playing capable defense at 1st base. Yonder Alonso hasn't seen a pitch above AA ball (and, frankly, hasn't played as well as Joey Votto did when he was the same age and at the same level).

You don't mess with Votto until Alonso is, literally, beating down the door to the majors with both fists at AAA. And, even then, you figure out if Alonso can play someplace else first (since he's in the minors and can tinker with his game without impacting the major league product) before you even consider moving Joey Votto.

Incidentally, this is why you should be careful about drafting players who are so position-limited in the high rounds of the draft.

Very well said. :thumbup:

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 09:24 AM
I'm a big fan of Joey Votto; always have been. I'd like to see him in LF with Yonder Alonso on 1b because I believe that is what gives us the best chance to win a championship. Simple as that.

You'd install Alonso as the 1B right now and move Votto right now?

bucksfan2
03-02-2010, 09:50 AM
Joey Votto was 3rd in the league in OPS last season. The only 2 players who were better were Pujols and Fielder. I don't see either of those players moving off their position any time soon. And FWIW if Alonso puts up a line of .322/.414/.567 in the minors next year I think most of us will be going bonkers over him. The reality is Votto put up that line this year in the majors.

Right now Alonso looks like a player who is blocked. He either switches position or is used as trade bait. The main criticism I had of him when he was drafted was his inability to play another position. That may come to fruition and I think he is used as trade bait, especially if the Reds are in contention.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 10:00 AM
Right now Alonso looks like a player who is blocked. He either switches position or is used as trade bait. The main criticism I had of him when he was drafted was his inability to play another position. That may come to fruition and I think he is used as trade bait, especially if the Reds are in contention.

If I were the Reds I'd be scouting the Yankees system very closely in 2010. They've got a slew of highly rated catching prospects -- Jesus Montero (who likely doesn't end up a catcher, but it's not decided yet) JR Murphy, Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez -- and that's currently a weakness in the Reds system. Maybe Alonso is a nice fit as a young DH for the Yanks, where he can pal around some more with that 3B....

RedEye
03-02-2010, 10:10 AM
Wasn't there some discussion of moving Alonso to catcher at some point?

HokieRed
03-02-2010, 10:29 AM
You'd install Alonso as the 1B right now and move Votto right now?


No, of course not. I'd try to get this done when Alonso has shown he's the key to putting three tremendous left-handed hitters in the lineup at one time--Votto, Bruce, Alonso. I think that will be sooner rather than later but it's certainly not now. If Alonso's really healthy, it may be as soon as this July or August. But all the discussion's premature as far as I'm concerned. I'm trusting Votto to see that what's best for the team will, at some point, include his moving to LF--unless that is, Alonso can play it adequately. But one thing I do insist on: if this team is to win a World Series (which is all that really matters), it's best chance will come with Votto, Bruce, and Alonso in the lineup at the same time. Mth123 has well argued this team's weakness against right-handers; I say that's the cure--Votto, Bruce, and Alonso.

Kc61
03-02-2010, 10:38 AM
Well, Alonso is currently considered a better prospect than when Votto was at the same stage. If I remember correctly, in the 2007, before he was called up in Sept. and went on a rampage, many had doubts that he'd be even an average MLB 1B.



Your memory is correct. There was even talk that Votto was trade bait, that he was viewed as a AAAA prospect. All this has proven woefully wrong. Votto is just a top notch young hitter.

In comparing the two, it will be a challenge for Alonso to exceed Votto's performance, at least his performance so far.

Votto hits both lefties and righties. In the minors, there was talk he couldn't hit lefties, which has proven incorrect.
Will Alonso hit both lefties and righties?

The other question is power. Alonso could exceed Votto if he shows great power, like a classic stud first baseman. But so far, he hasn't. It's early, though.

When the Reds drafted Alonso, the jury was still out on Votto. But now, with Votto showing all-star caliber play, one has to wonder whether Yonder will end up at a different position or on a different club.

While the odds may be against it, I'm hopeful that Alonso proves to be an adequate left fielder. Or that some other team loves him and will trade a top young shortstop or pitcher for him.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 10:44 AM
No, of course not. I'd try to get this done when Alonso has shown he's the key to putting three tremendous left-handed hitters in the lineup at one time--Votto, Bruce, Alonso. I think that will be sooner rather than later but it's certainly not now. If Alonso's really healthy, it may be as soon as this July or August. But all the discussion's premature as far as I'm concerned. I'm trusting Votto to see that what's best for the team will, at some point, include his moving to LF--unless that is, Alonso can play it adequately. But one thing I do insist on: if this team is to win a World Series (which is all that really matters), it's best chance will come with Votto, Bruce, and Alonso in the lineup at the same time. Mth123 has well argued this team's weakness against right-handers; I say that's the cure--Votto, Bruce, and Alonso.

You may be right. But for now the thing to do is see if Alonso can fit in LF (or at 3B), not Votto. They've got Francisco doing the same thing. Something will work out, it's just too soon to get a good read on what.

bucksfan2
03-02-2010, 10:59 AM
If I were the Reds I'd be scouting the Yankees system very closely in 2010. They've got a slew of highly rated catching prospects -- Jesus Montero (who likely doesn't end up a catcher, but it's not decided yet) JR Murphy, Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez -- and that's currently a weakness in the Reds system. Maybe Alonso is a nice fit as a young DH for the Yanks, where he can pal around some more with that 3B....

You may be right, but I don't see the Yankees installing an unproven rookie as their DH. Usually DH's are players who have proven themselves as good hitters but are a liability in the field.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 11:12 AM
You may be right, but I don't see the Yankees installing an unproven rookie as their DH. Usually DH's are players who have proven themselves as good hitters but are a liability in the field.

Yes, far more likely they'd go with a vet. Since trades are so rarely top prospect for top prospect, you'd have to think that Alonso would be packaged with a veteran like Harang, Arroyo or Phillips (the 3 most likely Reds to get shipped, IMO).

jmcclain19
03-02-2010, 12:32 PM
Rob Neyer's take this morning on Alonso & Votto


Reds' Alonso no match for Votto
Rob Neyer Mar 2, 2010 4:47 AM - Show original item

Ah, spring. When every talented prospect with a few weeks of Double-A experience is knocking on the door of the majors. And I'm afraid I'm assigned the unfortunate duty of knocking these tyros down a notch or two, until the Almighty (read: me) decides they're actually ready to play at the game's absolute highest level (or maybe the National League). Case in point:

Reds first-base prospect Yonder Alonso's supersized hitting ability should pave his express trip to the Major Leagues. It might have by now if there wasn't one very sturdy obstacle blocking the 22-year-old's path.

It's only the best hitter on the team and a fellow first baseman in Joey Votto.

This was a dilemma seen coming from the very moment Alonso was selected seventh overall in the 2008 First-Year Player Draft and signed to a five-year, $4.55 million Major League contract. At the time, Votto was still a rookie but a successful one, but Cincinnati has a Draft policy of taking the best available player and not selecting according to need.

Alonso reached Triple-A last season and his Major League promotion is only a matter of time -- if he can find a place to play. To that end, the Reds have worked him out this spring at third base and both corner-outfield spots. It's dispelled the common speculation that when Alonso was eventually called up, it would be Votto whom would be moved to left field.

"It will take some time to figure it out," Cincinnati general manager Walt Jocketty said. "That's why we want to see [Alonso] at different positions. He's got a great bat and Joey is going to be at first base for a long time. I don't see moving Joey."
Drafting the best player is a perfectly reasonable policy. As near as I can figure, the only flaw is that if you wind up having to trade the kid -- say, because his only position is played by someone better -- you might get slightly less than full value because your prospective trading partners know you have to trade him. That's a small (and perhaps nonexistent) thing, though.

For the moment, let's dispense with the notion that Alonso is ready for the majors. He's played only 29 games above Class A, and wasn't outstanding in those 29 games. As John Sickels points out in his new book (which you should buy), as a professional Alonso's got a .211/.326/.296 line against left-handed pitchers ... and was little better while starring for Miami.

There's also little reason to think he would last long in left field, or at third base. Almost 23, Alonso is a big fellow and will only get bigger and slower. He's just not someone the Reds can play right now, and probably won't be at any point this year.

Alonso's future? Well, that's up to the front office. If the Reds are willing to entertain the notion of trading Votto a year or so from now, they should groom Alonso as their First Baseman of the Future (which would include getting him a ton of at-bats against Triple-A pitchers, along with extra BP against left-handers with good breaking balls). If they're not willing to trade Votto, then Alonso should be placed wherever he's most likely to succeed, with the aim of driving his trade value as high as possible.

HokieRed
03-02-2010, 12:49 PM
"I don't see moving Joey" doesn't preclude Joey's volunteering to move once it becomes apparent that move is in the best interest of the team.

Eric_the_Red
03-02-2010, 12:51 PM
"I don't see moving Joey" doesn't preclude Joey's volunteering to move once it becomes apparent that move is in the best interest of the team.

Or "if it".

Caveat Emperor
03-02-2010, 01:42 PM
"I don't see moving Joey" doesn't preclude Joey's volunteering to move once it becomes apparent that move is in the best interest of the team.

The best interest of the team according to who?

As far as I'm concerned, keeping Votto at first base and shipping Alonso out for catching help or SS help once his trade value reaches maximum is in the best interests of the team.

Mario-Rijo
03-02-2010, 01:55 PM
The best interest of the team according to who?

As far as I'm concerned, keeping Votto at first base and shipping Alonso out for catching help or SS help once his trade value reaches maximum is in the best interests of the team.

Very true and/or pitching. I still think Tampa Bay might have some interest in an Alonso for Wade Davis deal. They also have Brignac at SS and Desmond Jennings in the OF who although they may prefer to keep over an Upton or Crawford due to dollars that is also a deal that would make some sense for both teams as Jennings is that rare guy who can bat lead off. The Rays only have Carlos Pena for the rest of this season and then he is a FA. I can see where they would rather trade Jennings for a 1B and keep Crawford (who will also be a FA) over Pena. This is a team whom I think makes sense to contact for Alonso, also keeping in mind he should help attendance a bit with having starred in Miami.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 02:11 PM
If I were the Reds I'd be scouting the Yankees system very closely in 2010. They've got a slew of highly rated catching prospects -- Jesus Montero (who likely doesn't end up a catcher, but it's not decided yet) JR Murphy, Austin Romine, Gary Sanchez -- and that's currently a weakness in the Reds system. Maybe Alonso is a nice fit as a young DH for the Yanks, where he can pal around some more with that 3B....

The Yankees have the best hitting prospect in baseball who can't catch and his only option is first base in Jesus Montero. That means Montero is going to DH and the Yankees are going to hope Romine works out behind the plate (I am a believer). They will have no interest in Alonso as both the DH and 1B spots are filled for them through 2016.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 02:22 PM
The Yankees have the best hitting prospect in baseball who can't catch and his only option is first base in Jesus Montero. That means Montero is going to DH and the Yankees are going to hope Romine works out behind the plate (I am a believer). They will have no interest in Alonso as both the DH and 1B spots are filled for them through 2016.

He's still catching. And you know they'd trade him in the right deal. You're right that Montero looks more like a DH than anything right now, but that doesn't mean he's a lock to be in NY. And if he goes, there's no significant prospect bat in that system.

Whether Alonso fits into the equation or not, without a top-flight catching prospect in the system the Reds should be scouting the Yanks -- they seem to have the most glaring surplus of those players.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 02:44 PM
He's still catching. And you know they'd trade him in the right deal. You're right that Montero looks more like a DH than anything right now, but that doesn't mean he's a lock to be in NY. And if he goes, there's no significant prospect bat in that system.

Whether Alonso fits into the equation or not, without a top-flight catching prospect in the system the Reds should be scouting the Yanks -- they seem to have the most glaring surplus of those players.

He is still catching, but he isn't viewed as a guy who will stick at catcher by anyone I have ever talked to or read. Alonso simply isn't a fit for the Yankees. Trade them Frazier or Heisey and you might be able to swap out Romine, but Montero is going nowhere and they would have zero interest in Alonso.

KronoRed
03-02-2010, 04:44 PM
Well, Alonso is currently considered a better prospect than when Votto was at the same stage. If I remember correctly, in the 2007, before he was called up in Sept. and went on a rampage, many had doubts that he'd be even an average MLB 1B.

The only people I recall thinking Votto was going to be bad were Scott Hatteberg fans.

It's silly for the Reds to even worry about moving Alonso now to a different spot, let him prove it's a problem first.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 04:48 PM
The only people I recall thinking Votto was going to be bad were Scott Hatteberg fans.

It's silly for the Reds to even worry about moving Alonso now to a different spot, let him prove it's a problem first.

I don't think people thought he was going to be bad, but the Reds themselves brought back Hatteberg to split time with Votto in 2008. Votto just kept clobbering the ball though.

The main issue with not worrying now is that it postpones help later if he does prove it. Wouldn't you rather be prepared somewhat if Alonso does indeed beat the door down by July rather than then be unprepared in July if Alonso is just ripping AAA apart and postponing him helping until 2011 because you couldn't get Votto 20-30 innings in left field during spring training or have him take fly balls in the outfield once a week during the season pre game? If you don't ever have to make the move, fine. But if you do, its much smarter to have prepared for it in advance when there was an idea out there that you knew of that it could be a possibility and somewhat soon.

Jpup
03-02-2010, 05:00 PM
Jocketty has now stated that Votto is not going to be moved. Some folks need to finally give it up and realize that he is not going to left field. Move on and hope that Alonso either works out at 3rd, Left, or is traded for a stud catcher, shortstop, or another great hitter than can play the outfield.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 05:04 PM
Jocketty has now stated that Votto is not going to be moved. Some folks need to finally give it up and realize that he is not going to left field. Move on and hope that Alonso either works out at 3rd, Left, or is traded for a stud catcher, shortstop, or another great hitter than can play the outfield.

As long as they hold true to Votto not being moved, then sure. But I still question the decision of not at least exploring it as I believe you should explore every option to improve your baseball team. I would ask Albert Pujols to go back to playing 3B if I could somehow swing a trade that lands me Prince Fielder. Sure, Pujols is the better player and has been in St Louis since the start, but Pujols is also the one of the two who has a chance to actually be able to play another position.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 05:33 PM
But I still question the decision of not at least exploring it as I believe you should explore every option to improve your baseball team.

Let Alonso prove he'd improve the team, then worry about it. Trying to force anything on Votto now based on the assumption that Alonso could eventually challenge for first base would be a terrible move. What the organization can give Votto right now is respect -- he's earned it. You have to remember that Alonso may have already earned more $$$ than Votto. Votto's still looking for that payday, even if right now he's done stuff in the majors Alonso can only dream about. So -- the organization has to be careful. They can't pay Votto yet, it seems -- but if they want any chance of getting a friendly deal out of him down the road they have to do right by him now.

These are people, not gamecards. You have to calculate the human equation correctly.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 05:47 PM
Let Alonso prove he'd improve the team, then worry about it. Trying to force anything on Votto now based on the assumption that Alonso could eventually challenge for first base would be a terrible move. What the organization can give Votto right now is respect -- he's earned it. You have to remember that Alonso may have already earned more $$$ than Votto. Votto's still looking for that payday, even if right now he's done stuff in the majors Alonso can only dream about. So -- the organization has to be careful. They can't pay Votto yet, it seems -- but if they want any chance of getting a friendly deal out of him down the road they have to do right by him now.

These are people, not gamecards. You have to calculate the human equation correctly.

The point is though that if you wait for Alonso to 'prove' it, you then have set yourself back however long it takes for you to be comfortable to play Votto in left long enough to be comfortable with him there to actually do it in a game. That sets your team back further. Where as just getting Votto 20-30 innings in left field in spring training to see how he does and if its not any worse than Jonny Gomes having Votto take 1 day out of the week to shag balls in the outfield during the season is going to set you back absolutely nothing. I would rather be prepared to make a move even if it never gets to that point than not be prepared for it and set things back even further and hurt the team because I couldn't see it coming despite the fact that I did indeed see it coming and the Reds most certainly see it coming.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 05:52 PM
Basically it comes down to this:

You can have Joey Votto try some left field in 10 games during the spring and see how it goes. If its decent enough, have him get one day a week in the outfield practice in the majors. It hurts nothing at all.

Or you can not do anything at all right now.

Then Alonso goes on a tear and hits .315/.400/.550 in April and May down in AAA and left field isn't working out as you hoped. If you went with option A, on June 1st you can call up Alonso and plug him at 1B and put Votto in LF. If you went with option B, you continue to have a crappy left field situation, keep Votto at 1B and get him some slight work in the outfield during practice and Alonso continues killing the ball in Louisville while not helping the Reds and maybe come August Votto now has enough time in left field to be comfortable again and you get Alonso's help then. But you have now wasted away two full months of Alonso at the MLB level because you couldn't ask Votto to try a little bit of left field in spring training.

Or there is the chance you take option A and Alonso doesn't break down the door in Louisville this season. You still lose absolutely nothing. It just doesn't make sense to not make it happen now, while you can, if you indeed see this problem coming at you and the Reds do.

Caveat Emperor
03-02-2010, 06:04 PM
Basically it comes down to this:

You can have Joey Votto try some left field in 10 games during the spring and see how it goes. If its decent enough, have him get one day a week in the outfield practice in the majors. It hurts nothing at all.

Or you can not do anything at all right now.

Then Alonso goes on a tear and hits .315/.400/.550 in April and May down in AAA and left field isn't working out as you hoped. If you went with option A, on June 1st you can call up Alonso and plug him at 1B and put Votto in LF. If you went with option B, you continue to have a crappy left field situation, keep Votto at 1B and get him some slight work in the outfield during practice and Alonso continues killing the ball in Louisville while not helping the Reds and maybe come August Votto now has enough time in left field to be comfortable again and you get Alonso's help then. But you have now wasted away two full months of Alonso at the MLB level because you couldn't ask Votto to try a little bit of left field in spring training.

Or there is the chance you take option A and Alonso doesn't break down the door in Louisville this season. You still lose absolutely nothing. It just doesn't make sense to not make it happen now, while you can, if you indeed see this problem coming at you and the Reds do.

Or you choose Option C:

You continue to let Joey Votto be the best hitter on the team and continue to work on becoming a top-flight first baseman defensively.

If Alonso goes on his supposed tear at Louisiville, you trade him (possibly packaged with other prospects) to the team willing to offer the best return value that includes a SS, a C, or a strong arm. You trust that one of your other farmhands (Frazier, Francisco, Heisey, et. al.) can provide the solution you are looking for at LF in 2010 and beyond.

As far as I'm concerned, you don't mess with Votto and Alonso is gone to the first team that offers a competitive return when (if?) he gets hot and starts tearing up AAA.

It's not like we're talking about a sacred cow or the #1 prospect in all of baseball here. He's a good prospect, but he's never been spoken of in reverent "untouchable" terms at any point in his career. He's a very advanced hitter who projects to be an above-average bat (possibly reaching All Star level) at first base, but he ain't Babe Ruth.

If you can mine value at a more important position out of that, go ahead and do it -- because finding an adequate LF should be beyond easy if you aren't terribly worried about defense (which you would be conceding as true the minute you stuck Votto out there).

TRF
03-02-2010, 06:13 PM
The point is though that if you wait for Alonso to 'prove' it, you then have set yourself back however long it takes for you to be comfortable to play Votto in left long enough to be comfortable with him there to actually do it in a game. That sets your team back further. Where as just getting Votto 20-30 innings in left field in spring training to see how he does and if its not any worse than Jonny Gomes having Votto take 1 day out of the week to shag balls in the outfield during the season is going to set you back absolutely nothing. I would rather be prepared to make a move even if it never gets to that point than not be prepared for it and set things back even further and hurt the team because I couldn't see it coming despite the fact that I did indeed see it coming and the Reds most certainly see it coming.

Again, this is sitting in a vacuum, minus Frazier, Heisey and Francisco. Heck, you could even throw Dorn into the mix. Moving Votto isn't a priority as the team has depth in the system at corner OF. And since Votto in LF and Alonso at 1B isn't significantly better than say Votto at 1B and Frazier in LF, why do it?

Will M
03-02-2010, 06:13 PM
forgive me if this has been already mentioned:

Votto goes to LF and makes a few bad plays.
He gets mildly stressed about this and it affects his hitting.
Or he gets really stressed out over this and his anxiety/depression issues flare up.

Keeping Joey at 1B lets him relax. Since he seems to be a 'take the world on his shoulders and get stressed out' kind of a guy, then maybe keeping him in his comfort zone is important. After all he is the only star player we have.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 06:14 PM
The point is though that if you wait for Alonso to 'prove' it, you then have set yourself back however long it takes for you to be comfortable to play Votto in left long enough to be comfortable with him there to actually do it in a game. That sets your team back further. Where as just getting Votto 20-30 innings in left field in spring training to see how he does and if its not any worse than Jonny Gomes having Votto take 1 day out of the week to shag balls in the outfield during the season is going to set you back absolutely nothing. I would rather be prepared to make a move even if it never gets to that point than not be prepared for it and set things back even further and hurt the team because I couldn't see it coming despite the fact that I did indeed see it coming and the Reds most certainly see it coming.

You can't worry about "setting the team back" until Alonso proves something. It's that simple. Unless you want an unhappy team, you do not favor high-round draft picks over core players on your major league club. Basic -- and I mean basic -- tenet of managing professional ballplayers.

But let's examine your fantasy on its own terms a little...

When they threw Votto out in LF in 07 -- and he looked fair -- how much prep do you think he'd had? Not much.

Even in the optimistic scenario you describe -- Alonso blowing up in AAA -- nothing happens until midseason. By then Goodyear is 4-5 months in the rearview mirror. The affront to Votto is what would linger, not the LF skills, so for now you leave the guy alone and let him devote himself to getting ready to be the best he can be for April 2010. That's how you avoid setting the team back. Because going into the season the Reds need Votto doing what Votto does more than they need a strategy for bringing any rookie to the majors down the road. The latter deserves zero consideration right now, as it pertains to Joey Votto.

Kc61
03-02-2010, 06:16 PM
It's not like we're talking about a sacred cow or the #1 prospect in all of baseball here. He's a good prospect, but he's never been spoken of in reverent "untouchable" terms at any point in his career. He's a very advanced hitter who projects to be an above-average bat (possibly reaching All Star level) at first base, but he ain't Babe Ruth.

If you can mine value at a more important position out of that, go ahead and do it -- because finding an adequate LF should be beyond easy if you aren't terribly worried about defense (which you would be conceding as true the minute you stuck Votto out there).

While I favor keeping JV at first, I'm confident he will get some OF time this spring. All kinds of things are tried out in spring training and Votto should play some innings out there just to enhance his flexibility in case of emergency.

Don't disgregard the possibility that this all comes down to economics.

If YA pans out offensively, the Reds could approach Votto for a long-term extension. Buy out his arb years, lock him up for 5-6 years at a fair price. If he says no, we can't ignore the possibility that he is deemed too expensive and traded.

Keep in mind that Harang and Arroyo may be gone next year, the Reds will need some pitchers. Jocketty doesn't strike me as the type to rely on Leake and Wood and other prospects. He will want one or two good experienced starters.

So there will likely be a scenario for Alonso or, less likely, Votto to bring back an important player in a trade.

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 06:22 PM
Basically it comes down to this:

You can have Joey Votto try some left field in 10 games during the spring and see how it goes. If its decent enough, have him get one day a week in the outfield practice in the majors. It hurts nothing at all.

Or you can not do anything at all right now.

Then Alonso goes on a tear and hits .315/.400/.550 in April and May down in AAA and left field isn't working out as you hoped. If you went with option A, on June 1st you can call up Alonso and plug him at 1B and put Votto in LF. If you went with option B, you continue to have a crappy left field situation, keep Votto at 1B and get him some slight work in the outfield during practice and Alonso continues killing the ball in Louisville while not helping the Reds and maybe come August Votto now has enough time in left field to be comfortable again and you get Alonso's help then. But you have now wasted away two full months of Alonso at the MLB level because you couldn't ask Votto to try a little bit of left field in spring training.

Or there is the chance you take option A and Alonso doesn't break down the door in Louisville this season. You still lose absolutely nothing. It just doesn't make sense to not make it happen now, while you can, if you indeed see this problem coming at you and the Reds do.

It seems to me you have no grasp for the human variables in this situation.

Are you intentionally ignoring them, or do you think they don't exist?

lollipopcurve
03-02-2010, 06:25 PM
While I favor keeping JV at first, I'm confident he will get some OF time this spring. All kinds of things are tried out in spring training and Votto should play some innings out there just to enhance his flexibility in case of emergency.

They've got bodies galore for LF, including Alonso. I'd be shocked if Votto sees an inning out there.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 06:27 PM
Or you choose Option C:

You continue to let Joey Votto be the best hitter on the team and continue to work on becoming a top-flight first baseman defensively.

If Alonso goes on his supposed tear at Louisiville, you trade him (possibly packaged with other prospects) to the team willing to offer the best return value that includes a SS, a C, or a strong arm. You trust that one of your other farmhands (Frazier, Francisco, Heisey, et. al.) can provide the solution you are looking for at LF in 2010 and beyond.

As far as I'm concerned, you don't mess with Votto and Alonso is gone to the first team that offers a competitive return when (if?) he gets hot and starts tearing up AAA.

It's not like we're talking about a sacred cow or the #1 prospect in all of baseball here. He's a good prospect, but he's never been spoken of in reverent "untouchable" terms at any point in his career. He's a very advanced hitter who projects to be an above-average bat (possibly reaching All Star level) at first base, but he ain't Babe Ruth.

If you can mine value at a more important position out of that, go ahead and do it -- because finding an adequate LF should be beyond easy if you aren't terribly worried about defense (which you would be conceding as true the minute you stuck Votto out there).
Well option C is only if the Reds are just giving lip service, which I stated at the start of all of the proposed ideas is not being applied here if what they are saying is to be believed. If it is just lip service, then sure. Just trade Alonso. But if its not and the Reds are looking at legit ways to put Alonso in a Reds uniform, then options A and B are the ones you need to look at. Option C isn't an option in that equation.

As for Alonso's prospects ranking.... pre injury when he was beating up on the FSL, he was rated as the #15 prospect in all of baseball. Sure, its not #1, but that is among the absolute elite prospects in baseball.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 06:29 PM
It seems to me you have no grasp for the human variables in this situation.

Are you intentionally ignoring them, or do you think they don't exist?

If someone is going to throw a fit and act like they are 10 and their dad is the coach because I offer something that could improve the team, then I don't want that guy on my team anyways. Sure, players like that exist but I would tell them that they do what I fill out on the lineup card until they are no longer on my team. If the player is more about him than the team, well I can simply solve my problem by trading that guy.

edabbs44
03-02-2010, 06:30 PM
Philly had a similar problem with Howard/Thome. The only difference, I guess, was that Thome wasn't going anywhere else on the field.

I'd let Alonso play first in AAA for the season and let Votto play all season at first in Cincy. Then, this offseason, I'd have to make a decision. If Alonso mauls AAA pitching all year, Votto would not be untouchable. I would look to trade one of them and see what helps the team the most. Alonso and the haul from a Votto trade or vice versa.

reds44
03-02-2010, 06:30 PM
If someone is going to throw a fit and act like they are 10 and their dad is the coach because I offer something that could improve the team, then I don't want that guy on my team anyways. Sure, players like that exist but I would tell them that they do what I fill out on the lineup card until they are no longer on my team. If the player is more about him than the team, well I can simply solve my problem by trading that guy.
So now we're going to trade our best player to make room for a prospect with barely any minor league expierence?

westofyou
03-02-2010, 07:27 PM
If someone is going to throw a fit and act like they are 10 and their dad is the coach because I offer something that could improve the team, then I don't want that guy on my team anyways. Sure, players like that exist but I would tell them that they do what I fill out on the lineup card until they are no longer on my team. If the player is more about him than the team, well I can simply solve my problem by trading that guy.

Deal with many people and their needs much?

Baseball is a reflection of life, people act that way everywhere and sometimes they can't be traded, i suggest someone "manage" their behavior.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 08:32 PM
So now we're going to trade our best player to make room for a prospect with barely any minor league expierence?

Not this second, no. But if Alonso shows that he is going to have a very high likelihood of being a legit bat and I approach Votto and he says absolutely no way am I even trying to play LF.... then you bet your bottom dollar I will trade him. You are part of a team. You aren't the team. If you would rather have your way at the expense of the other 24 players on the team, then well, I am going to move you for someone else.

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 08:34 PM
Deal with many people and their needs much?

Baseball is a reflection of life, people act that way everywhere and sometimes they can't be traded, i suggest someone "manage" their behavior.

When people I know act like spoiled babies when they don't get their way, I call them out on it. If they still want to be like that, then I just stop associating with them. If it were to come to that with Votto, he could be traded for a big return I am sure and I could let someone else deal with his ego. All hypothetical situations of course, but if that's how it went down when asked, that is exactly how I would respond.

HokieRed
03-02-2010, 09:02 PM
I'm hoping we won't have to face some of the scenarios being suggested here because I'm hoping Votto will see, sometime between July and the beginning of 2011, that the best way for this team to contend is to have him, Jay Bruce, and Alonso in the lineup at the same time. As for trading Alonso, I'm not interested in anybody I've seen mentioned here, which is simply to say I think he's a lot--a lot--better prospect than he's given credit for here.

Mario-Rijo
03-02-2010, 09:48 PM
When people I know act like spoiled babies when they don't get their way, I call them out on it. If they still want to be like that, then I just stop associating with them. If it were to come to that with Votto, he could be traded for a big return I am sure and I could let someone else deal with his ego. All hypothetical situations of course, but if that's how it went down when asked, that is exactly how I would respond.

I don't think you can characterize somebody that way just because they would rather not do something that isn't even in their best interest. Votto has been asked to move already in his career and did so and has made the most of it. What happens next you ask him to move yet again when you the f.o. make another foolish transaction? It shouldn't come to asking Votto to do anything IMO he has earned the right to stay at 1st base, what is next we ask Cueto or Bailey to move to closer just because they can do it? Moving Alonso to another team if done properly can help just as well maybe more, and if not put him in LF and live with it.

15fan
03-02-2010, 09:57 PM
Casey or Konerko? I love Sean but...really?

The day "way over" Yonder was drafted I said he was a BPA to be traded when his value was ripe

No reason to change that take. Alonzo is a DH, Cincy is a NL team

Bravo, good sir. You're the only person in the thread to draw the parallel between 2010 and a dozen years ago.

Though you do lose a couple of points because you left Dmitri Young out of the equation. Remember when Da Meat Hook was shifted to the hot corner? :eek: He made Willie Greene look like Brooks Robinson.

Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it.

Raisor
03-02-2010, 10:12 PM
Time for a SAT Question:
Joey Votto is Canadian. Canada won the Gold Medal in Hockey. Therefore Joey Votto should be the 1B for the Reds for the next 15 years.

Chip R
03-02-2010, 10:18 PM
Though you do lose a couple of points because you left Dmitri Young out of the equation. Remember when Da Meat Hook was shifted to the hot corner? :eek: He made Willie Greene look like Brooks Robinson.


God bless Dimitri, he really tried out there. Some guys wouldn't play because they had cramps or something like that so they had to put Dimitri at 3rd.

westofyou
03-02-2010, 10:25 PM
When people I know act like spoiled babies when they don't get their way, I call them out on it. If they still want to be like that, then I just stop associating with them. If it were to come to that with Votto, he could be traded for a big return I am sure and I could let someone else deal with his ego. All hypothetical situations of course, but if that's how it went down when asked, that is exactly how I would respond.

In the world of pro baseball an asset is an asset, if the first part of the word "asset" applies to a player then the rest of the word must be weighed accordingly.

Mario-Rijo
03-02-2010, 11:14 PM
When people I know act like spoiled babies when they don't get their way, I call them out on it. If they still want to be like that, then I just stop associating with them. If it were to come to that with Votto, he could be traded for a big return I am sure and I could let someone else deal with his ego. All hypothetical situations of course, but if that's how it went down when asked, that is exactly how I would respond.

Just another thought here. How long do you think you would keep your job if Pujols didn't want to move to 3rd for Fielder, because according to you he would be gone?!

dougdirt
03-02-2010, 11:17 PM
Just another thought here. How long do you think you would keep your job if Pujols didn't want to move to 3rd for Fielder, because according to you he would be gone?!

Not all that sure. But I wouldn't let the players tell me what is best for the team.

IslandRed
03-02-2010, 11:21 PM
When people I know act like spoiled babies when they don't get their way, I call them out on it. If they still want to be like that, then I just stop associating with them. If it were to come to that with Votto, he could be traded for a big return I am sure and I could let someone else deal with his ego. All hypothetical situations of course, but if that's how it went down when asked, that is exactly how I would respond.

I'll point out that you can be the guy who fills out lineup cards or you can be the guy who makes trades, but you aren't going to be both guys. And if you're a manager in a tiff with a star player over a position-change ultimatum, it bears remembering that you're a lot easier to replace. It doesn't mean you have to give in, but the reasoning had better be airtight and the GM had better have your back. Hypothetically speaking, of course.

Mario-Rijo
03-02-2010, 11:41 PM
Not all that sure. But I wouldn't let the players tell me what is best for the team.

JMO and I know where you are coming from but I'm not so sure that what you are promoting is what is best for the team. Not only would Votto likely have an issue with it whether he said anything or not I think many others on the team would as well. Would it be best for the team or the individuals?

Caveat Emperor
03-03-2010, 01:11 AM
Not this second, no. But if Alonso shows that he is going to have a very high likelihood of being a legit bat and I approach Votto and he says absolutely no way am I even trying to play LF.... then you bet your bottom dollar I will trade him. You are part of a team. You aren't the team. If you would rather have your way at the expense of the other 24 players on the team, then well, I am going to move you for someone else.

So you trade a near-1.000 OPS bat to make a point about team unity and open a spot for a kid who's never hit a big league fastball?

I'll be kind and just say that I respectfully disagree.

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 03:32 AM
So you trade a near-1.000 OPS bat to make a point about team unity and open a spot for a kid who's never hit a big league fastball?

I'll be kind and just say that I respectfully disagree.

I don't expect Votto to continue to be a near 1.000 OPS bat moving forward, .900 yes, but not 1.000. And I would certainly consider doing just that if the situation played out where Alonso were absolutely killing it and Votto said 'No way, no how am I ever moving because I am more important than the team'.

Ron Madden
03-03-2010, 05:34 AM
Just another thought here. How long do you think you would keep your job if Pujols didn't want to move to 3rd for Fielder, because according to you he would be gone?!

Pujols and Fielder don't count.

They were not drafted by the Reds since Doug became a Fan.. ;)




just needeling you a bit Doug, all in fun no malice intended. :)

lollipopcurve
03-03-2010, 09:36 AM
Let's not forget that moving Votto to LF this season -- based, per Doug, on the theoretical hot two months Alonso is going to have in AAA -- blows up playing time for Gomes, Dickerson, and possibly Heisey, Frazier and Balentien, all of whom have to this point shown more on the field than Alonso, and all of whom, with the possible exception of Gomes, are better (in some cases, much better) defenders than Votto would be.

It's such a bad idea right now. Doesn't mean things won't be different in the future, of course, but at this point it's ludicrous for a handful of reasons.

bucksfan2
03-03-2010, 10:44 AM
This situation kind of reminds me of the Cleveland Indians in the mid 90's. They had Jim Thome at 1b with guys like Richie Sexson and Sean Casey coming up in the pipeline. Both Sexson and Casey were dealt to add missing pieces to the Indians.

To me minor leaguers are pawns. Some you protect and some you sacrifice. If Alonso goes gang busters in AAA this season that only increases his trade value. If he does I sit down with Votto and discuss the situation. I work out a contract extension with him at the same time but also talk about his thoughts on a move to LF. If he is against it, then I trade Alonso, if he is for it then I see how it goes.

Caveat Emperor
03-03-2010, 12:37 PM
To me minor leaguers are pawns. Some you protect and some you sacrifice.

Yup.

I feel that sometimes people become so attached to Reds prospects as they come up through the system that they often forget that these guys are just assets that need to be cultivated, shuffled, and cultivated again until the end result is a 25 man roster that can win major league games.

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 01:17 PM
Let's not forget that moving Votto to LF this season -- based, per Doug, on the theoretical hot two months Alonso is going to have in AAA -- blows up playing time for Gomes, Dickerson, and possibly Heisey, Frazier and Balentien, all of whom have to this point shown more on the field than Alonso, and all of whom, with the possible exception of Gomes, are better (in some cases, much better) defenders than Votto would be.

It's such a bad idea right now. Doesn't mean things won't be different in the future, of course, but at this point it's ludicrous for a handful of reasons.

Yeah...it would be horrible to have lesser players get less playing time...ha I agree that right now is not the time to worry about it, but to say 100% that Votto won't have to move to LF is just being naive when looking at Alonso's abilities. I know everyone is a big fan of Joey, and I am as well, but if putting Alonso at 1B and Votto in LF in 2011 is what gives the Reds the best chance to win then so be it. If you think that can't change based on what Jockety said the other day then again you are naive. Trading Alonso or Votto may not be what makes the Reds the best they can be; keeping them both may be what gives the Reds their best chance to win. And yeah, there is a small chance that Alonso doesn't develop, but to downplay his talent or call him a DH is a bit silly at this point; of course there is also about the same chance that Votto gets hurt or goes the other direction in his hitting. I just don't believe that Votto would refuse to move, but we will find out when/if the time comes.

Bum

lollipopcurve
03-03-2010, 01:56 PM
Yeah...it would be horrible to have lesser players get less playing time...ha I agree that right now is not the time to worry about it, but to say 100% that Votto won't have to move to LF is just being naive when looking at Alonso's abilities. I know everyone is a big fan of Joey, and I am as well, but if putting Alonso at 1B and Votto in LF in 2011 is what gives the Reds the best chance to win then so be it. If you think that can't change based on what Jockety said the other day then again you are naive. Trading Alonso or Votto may not be what makes the Reds the best they can be; keeping them both may be what gives the Reds their best chance to win. And yeah, there is a small chance that Alonso doesn't develop, but to downplay his talent or call him a DH is a bit silly at this point; of course there is also about the same chance that Votto gets hurt or goes the other direction in his hitting. I just don't believe that Votto would refuse to move, but we will find out when/if the time comes.

The debate is not about 2011. It's about asking Votto to play LF against his wishes and in this spring training. You're assigning arguments to people who aren't making them.

GoReds
03-03-2010, 02:01 PM
Votto was originally a catcher, correct? When he moved to first, his defense was considered below average, but he's put in the work and is now above average.

I can see Rolen being here for this year and next. Wonder if Joey would consider third base a challenge?

Degenerate39
03-03-2010, 02:22 PM
Votto was originally a catcher, correct? When he moved to first, his defense was considered below average, but he's put in the work and is now above average.

I can see Rolen being here for this year and next. Wonder if Joey would consider third base a challenge?

I'm sure Joey would play where ever they asked him too. But I'd rather see Frazier be at 3rd base. If they can get Alonso to do even half way decent defensively at left field I'd say put him there. His bat will probably be good enough to carry him any where he plays

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 02:28 PM
The debate is not about 2011. It's about asking Votto to play LF against his wishes and in this spring training. You're assigning arguments to people who aren't making them.

I wasn't referring to you Lollipop...I only referred to one sentence of your post. Sorry about that. I could name the posters on here making the exact argument that I stated but they know who they are.

Funny, I have not heard Joey say that he would not move to LF. Of course, I don't care either but, I haven't heard it either.

redsmetz
03-03-2010, 02:40 PM
I wasn't referring to you Lollipop...I only referred to one sentence of your post. Sorry about that. I could name the posters on here making the exact argument that I stated but they know who they are.

Funny, I have not heard Joey say that he would not move to LF. Of course, I don't care either but, I haven't heard it either.

I can't recall ever actually seeing a quote from Votto refusing to play LF or even stating a desire not to. It's always struck me as more "urban legend" that keeps getting bandied about. His character doesn't seem like the type to make such a stand.

edabbs44
03-03-2010, 03:36 PM
I can't recall ever actually seeing a quote from Votto refusing to play LF or even stating a desire not to. It's always struck me as more "urban legend" that keeps getting bandied about. His character doesn't seem like the type to make such a stand.

I think there was an article last spring, IIRC.

Mario-Rijo
03-03-2010, 03:46 PM
I can't recall ever actually seeing a quote from Votto refusing to play LF or even stating a desire not to. It's always struck me as more "urban legend" that keeps getting bandied about. His character doesn't seem like the type to make such a stand.

So if he said he'd prefer to play 1st base than to move to another position then that is some kind of stand? And FWIW he's never been asked to and thusly never refused to, but he has said that he would prefer to stay where he is at, but took no stand. I did read it on RZ i'm fairly sure but not positive where.

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 03:50 PM
So if he said he'd prefer to play 1st base than to move to another position then that is some kind of stand? And FWIW he's never been asked to and thusly never refused to, but he has said that he would prefer to stay where he is at, but took no stand. I did read it on RZ i'm fairly sure but not positive where.

I believe this is correct. I have not seen anywhere that Votto has flat out said no to moving. I have seen where he said he would rather stay and I have seen where the team said they aren't asking him.

redsmetz
03-03-2010, 04:22 PM
I believe this is correct. I have not seen anywhere that Votto has flat out said no to moving. I have seen where he said he would rather stay and I have seen where the team said they aren't asking him.

There is a big distinction there. Often it's bandied about here that Votto has refused. I think it's a non-issue because the club has not asked that he move and he has not refused.

Eric_the_Red
03-03-2010, 04:23 PM
So, Votto has never stated that he would not change positions, Votto hasn't been asked to change positions, and Alonso isn't ready to take Votto's position now anyway.

....

Why does this thread have 14 pages?

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 04:35 PM
Why does this thread have 14 pages?

Uh...cause people read more into Jockety's quote than was actually there? Cause people have used Jockety's quote to say that that is the end of the debate? Cause some people believe that Jockety can't change his mind 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, etc. from now? Cause both players are super talented and people are taking one player or another instead of appreciating both players? I think those could be a few reasons...:D

MikeS21
03-03-2010, 04:40 PM
It's probably the same thing as no one asking Dunn to move to 1B ... or Junior to move out of CF ... :D

Honestly, I don't care if Alonso OPS's 1.200 this year at AAA. He doesn't have that many AB's in minor leagues. Give him the WHOLE year to make his case against some semi-advanced pitching who have adjusted after seeing him 2-3 times over the course of a season. Then we can have this discussion in October/November. And who knows, if Joey needs to go on the extended DL, Alonso may get a few major league AB's.

I doubt Votto needs more than three or four games to shake off any cobwebs in LF, and he can do that in July if Alonso suddenly rediscovers his HR stroke. Right now, Alonso hasn't proved that he's anything more than a Sean Casey - Part 2.

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 04:45 PM
So, Votto has never stated that he would not change positions, Votto hasn't been asked to change positions, and Alonso isn't ready to take Votto's position now anyway.

....

Why does this thread have 14 pages?

Because the discussion went into Votto shouldn't move at all and Votto should be asked to move if it makes the team better.

TRF
03-03-2010, 04:59 PM
And because the only person the Reds have to play LF is Votto apparently

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 05:04 PM
And because the only person the Reds have to play LF is Votto apparently

Could it just be the desire to keep 2 great players on the same team? May take some flexibility?

TRF
03-03-2010, 05:13 PM
Could it just be the desire to keep 2 great players on the same team? May take some flexibility?

Because baseball isn't a vacuum with only Votto and Alonso. Frazier might just be every bit the hitter Alonso is. Heisey less so, but with defense far better in the OF that either Votto or Alonso can provide.

Sometimes flexibility is willing to part with a prospect, no matter how good you think he will be. The Red Sox traded Hanley Ramirez. I bet they make that trade 10 times out of 10 too.

HokieRed
03-03-2010, 05:16 PM
Could it just be the desire to keep 2 great players on the same team? May take some flexibility?


Agree 100%, as I think my posts have made clear. This is also, by the way, a reason not to trade Alonso, as it will allow us to keep--perhaps and obviously assuming, as I do, that Alonso becomes a terrific player--2 great players for longer--i.e. 2 of the 3 we will have, Votto, Bruce, Alonso. I do not believe this organization will be able to keep both Bruce and Votto when they reach free agency. Keeping Alonso means we will have at least two of these three (assuming we can sign one of Bruce and Votto) through the whole period of Chapman's contract, for instance. Walt's said he's trying to build perennial strength not just strength for a year or two. IMO, keeping Alonso and Votto best suits that plan. It's not irrelevant that Alonso's under control of the org. for several years longer than Votto.

edabbs44
03-03-2010, 05:17 PM
Could it just be the desire to keep 2 great players on the same team? May take some flexibility?

Who's the second great player?

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 05:18 PM
Because baseball isn't a vacuum with only Votto and Alonso. Frazier might just be every bit the hitter Alonso is. Heisey less so, but with defense far better in the OF that either Votto or Alonso can provide.

Sometimes flexibility is willing to part with a prospect, no matter how good you think he will be. The Red Sox traded Hanley Ramirez. I bet they make that trade 10 times out of 10 too.

And yet, trading Alonso is not the only option. It is obviously the only option you are willing to acknowledge, and it is an option, but it's not the only option. Alonso still has to prove he can do it, but his ceiling and floor are both higher than Frazier's are.

TRF
03-03-2010, 05:21 PM
And yet, trading Alonso is not the only option. It is obviously the only option you are willing to acknowledge, and it is an option, but it's not the only option. Alonso still has to prove he can do it, but his ceiling and floor are both higher than Frazier's are.

Opinion, not fact, as Frazier is the higher rated prospect on more than a few lists. I'd say offensively, Alonso MAY have a bit more upside, defensively, its Frazier, hands down.

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 05:21 PM
Who's the second great player?

oh ye of little faith...:p: Just watch Votto this year and you will see a great player I am sure...kidding

I admit Alonso needs to prove he can do it, but make sure you aren't discounting Alonso just because of your admiration of Votto. Alonso is a tremendous prospect and decisions will have to be made in the next year I would imagine. It's a nice problem to have; y'all make it seem like it is terrible and somehow insulting to Votto; it's great for the Reds!

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 05:24 PM
Opinion, not fact, as Frazier is the higher rated prospect on more than a few lists. I'd say offensively, Alonso MAY have a bit more upside, defensively, its Frazier, hands down.

Frazier is better defensively, Janish is better defensively than Frazier...who cares? Alonso will be a much better hitter than Frazier and he plays 1B which won't require better defense, right?

Mario-Rijo
03-03-2010, 05:31 PM
Because the discussion went into Votto shouldn't move at all and Votto should be asked to move if it makes the team better.

I don't think it's that simple. As a matter of fact I personally don't have a problem with the team asking him (not that my opinion matters to them) to do that and I understand the rationale behind it. But I just don't think it's fair to expect him to just go ahead and jump to doing it. Or hold it against him for not wanting to. I should add it would be different IMO if he wasn't handling his current position well.

TRF
03-03-2010, 05:53 PM
And Votto is better than Alonso defensively and offensively. at 1B.

You don't move the better player to a position he is weaker at in favor of a lesser hitter. Its certainly no lock that Alonso is better than Frazier offensively as Frazier has been better than Alonso at every level.

Bumstead
03-03-2010, 05:58 PM
And Votto is better than Alonso defensively and offensively. at 1B. You don't move the better player to a position he is weaker at in favor of a lesser hitter.

Right now, I agree that Votto is better. As a matter of fact, I agree that righat now you do nothing (other than experiment with Alonso at other positions). But, you do move Votto if it makes the team better. If you can't even fathom such a thing, then it is time to move on cause this is just turning into g-nip, g-nop if you remember that game...

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 05:59 PM
And Votto is better than Alonso defensively and offensively. at 1B.

You don't move the better player to a position he is weaker at in favor of a lesser hitter. Its certainly no lock that Alonso is better than Frazier offensively as Frazier has been better than Alonso at every level.

Alonso OPS'd .880 in Sarasota. Frazier was at .808. Thats a bit of a difference. Frazier was not even better at AA, where Alonso OPS'd .829 while Frazier was at .831. Frazier was also older and not dealing with a wrist injury. Of course SSS applies as well in Alonso's case.

But to get to the first part of your post, why do you not make that move if the combo of Votto to LF and Alonso at 1B is better than keeping Votto at 1B and someone else in LF? The fact that Votto may be better than Alonso at 1B means nothing if the move makes the Reds better.

Again, not saying it does. But completely ignoring the fact that it could happen seems to be going on an awful lot in the thread.

paulrichjr
03-03-2010, 06:25 PM
Yup.

I feel that sometimes people become so attached to Reds prospects as they come up through the system that they often forget that these guys are just assets that need to be cultivated, shuffled, and cultivated again until the end result is a 25 man roster that can win major league games.

Do you realize how long it has been since we have had any real prospects that we want to keep? We are grasping at any glimmer of hope.

Scrap Irony
03-03-2010, 06:30 PM
Do you realize how long it has been since we have had any real prospects that we want to keep? We are grasping at any glimmer of hope.

I'd argue that the Reds have enjoyed one of the most successful farm systems over the past three years of any in baseball. Top five, at least. Real prospects are all over the field at the major league level right now and in AAA and AA.

The farm is thriving and has done so for awhile now.

TRF
03-03-2010, 06:35 PM
Frazier is better defensively, Janish is better defensively than Frazier...who cares? Alonso will be a much better hitter than Frazier and he plays 1B which won't require better defense, right?


Alonso OPS'd .880 in Sarasota. Frazier was at .808. Thats a bit of a difference. Frazier was not even better at AA, where Alonso OPS'd .829 while Frazier was at .831. Frazier was also older and not dealing with a wrist injury. Of course SSS applies as well in Alonso's case.

But to get to the first part of your post, why do you not make that move if the combo of Votto to LF and Alonso at 1B is better than keeping Votto at 1B and someone else in LF? The fact that Votto may be better than Alonso at 1B means nothing if the move makes the Reds better.

Again, not saying it does. But completely ignoring the fact that it could happen seems to be going on an awful lot in the thread.

No, what seems to be going on in this thread is treating that move like a must happen without taking into consideration the 5 or so other players on the cusp of making it to the Reds vying for that LF job. I don't believe that Alonso's offense will be so much greater then Frazier's. I think Frazier's LF defense will be MUCH better than Votto's LF defense. I don't think Alonso's offense or defense will ever be better than Votto's and I don't think many in the Reds think it will either.

But you want the Reds' best player to move from his best position to make room for a guy that hasn't played a full season injury free, and by your words will either be tearing up AAA by july or might be fully healed by july. ok.

I'm not afraid to see a player move to another position. BP should have moved in 2007 to SS. Maybe if the Reds had a decent 3B in the pipeline, EE would be playing LF (I really always thought he might get it together at 3B though... ah well). But to move a guy off position when others are better suited to it AND on the verge of coming up sends a very BAD signal to those players.

Alonso is trade bait. You should probably get used to that.

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 06:41 PM
But you want the Reds' best player to move from his best position to make room for a guy that hasn't played a full season injury free, and by your words will either be tearing up AAA by july or might be fully healed by july. ok.


You clearly have missed everything I have written. I am suggesting that IF Alonso pushes the issue, that there is a good chance that Alonso to 1B and Votto to LF is the best situation for the Reds. I am also suggesting there is a chance that it could happen as soon as June or July of this year. I am suggesting that it would be smart for the Reds to start making slight preparations for that scenario if they don't view Alonso as pure and simple trade bait because that guy isn't playing another position no matter how much we wish he can. It hurts nothing to be prepared for the situation, if it doesn't arrive, then it never has to take place. But if it does arrive and you didn't prepare at all, it hurts your team for however long it takes you to get Votto the time in LF during practice until he is game ready to make the move to bring Alonso up. I just don't see why you don't at least prepare for the situation that could present itself if the Reds truly don't see Alonso as pure trade material.

TRF
03-03-2010, 07:02 PM
You clearly have missed everything I have written. I am suggesting that IF Alonso pushes the issue, that there is a good chance that Alonso to 1B and Votto to LF is the best situation for the Reds. I am also suggesting there is a chance that it could happen as soon as June or July of this year. I am suggesting that it would be smart for the Reds to start making slight preparations for that scenario if they don't view Alonso as pure and simple trade bait because that guy isn't playing another position no matter how much we wish he can. It hurts nothing to be prepared for the situation, if it doesn't arrive, then it never has to take place. But if it does arrive and you didn't prepare at all, it hurts your team for however long it takes you to get Votto the time in LF during practice until he is game ready to make the move to bring Alonso up. I just don't see why you don't at least prepare for the situation that could present itself if the Reds truly don't see Alonso as pure trade material.

because what if Frazier is the AAA LF, plays above league average defense, and OPS's around .875+? What if at the same time Dorn does something similar in RF? (yeah, he can't hit LH's, but neither can Alonso and he murders RH's) And what if Francisco has a light come on, but butchers 3B? And say all this happens and Alonso, who by your own words won't be healthy until July just is average. Or maybe he OPS's .875.

Why on god's earth would you move Votto to LF with three bats potentially posting an .850+ OPS and all are potential LF's? For the outside chance that ONE scenario MIGHT play out?

No.

You maximize his potential value to the Reds. You start Alonso everyday at 1B, and maybe you show him to have versatility by playing a few games at 3B and LF. And you shop him quietly while publicly getting him some press. Especially if he has a good stretc of games offensively while out of position.

Mario-Rijo
03-03-2010, 07:09 PM
You clearly have missed everything I have written. I am suggesting that IF Alonso pushes the issue, that there is a good chance that Alonso to 1B and Votto to LF is the best situation for the Reds. I am also suggesting there is a chance that it could happen as soon as June or July of this year. I am suggesting that it would be smart for the Reds to start making slight preparations for that scenario if they don't view Alonso as pure and simple trade bait because that guy isn't playing another position no matter how much we wish he can. It hurts nothing to be prepared for the situation, if it doesn't arrive, then it never has to take place. But if it does arrive and you didn't prepare at all, it hurts your team for however long it takes you to get Votto the time in LF during practice until he is game ready to make the move to bring Alonso up. I just don't see why you don't at least prepare for the situation that could present itself if the Reds truly don't see Alonso as pure trade material.

They aren't going to prepare for something they obviously don't plan to do. The way I read it is they don't foresee Alonso doing something so special to make them eat their words. And if he does well they will be happy to re-consider.

dougdirt
03-03-2010, 07:09 PM
because what if Frazier is the AAA LF, plays above league average defense, and OPS's around .875+? What if at the same time Dorn does something similar in RF? (yeah, he can't hit LH's, but neither can Alonso and he murders RH's) And what if Francisco has a light come on, but butchers 3B? And say all this happens and Alonso, who by your own words won't be healthy until July just is average. Or maybe he OPS's .875.

Why on god's earth would you move Votto to LF with three bats potentially posting an .850+ OPS and all are potential LF's? For the outside chance that ONE scenario MIGHT play out?
You don't move Votto yet. You wait for the other situations to play out, but you prepare Votto today so you don't have to do so in the future when it will take longer IF you decide that is the best route for the team to take. You don't move Votto until you decide what to do with Alonso (and he needs to push the gas pedal hard and heavy before making a move), but if you decide you want both Votto and Alonso on the same team Votto to LF is the only option that makes any real sense. Be prepared for the situation and if it never presents itself then it doesn't matter. But if it does present itself, you can take action quicker, thus maximizing the best solution for the Reds quicker.

TRF
03-03-2010, 11:13 PM
You don't move Votto yet. You wait for the other situations to play out, but you prepare Votto today so you don't have to do so in the future when it will take longer IF you decide that is the best route for the team to take. You don't move Votto until you decide what to do with Alonso (and he needs to push the gas pedal hard and heavy before making a move), but if you decide you want both Votto and Alonso on the same team Votto to LF is the only option that makes any real sense. Be prepared for the situation and if it never presents itself then it doesn't matter. But if it does present itself, you can take action quicker, thus maximizing the best solution for the Reds quicker.

I just disagree with this completely. It'd be one thing if he was moving for defensive reasons and you wanted his bat in the lineup (BP to SS springs to mind), but this move is nonsensical. Even preparing him to move sends the wrong message to Francisco Heisey and Frazier. It says to them, don't bother, we only value Votto and really Alonso. And Alonso hasn't proven squat.

1B is a non issue. It's Joey Votto's until he can't play there, his bat fades or is traded. LF is the open position and Alonso is the odd man out. I doubt we ever see Alonso and Votto on the field together in a regular season game. One or the other, maybe.

mth123
03-03-2010, 11:21 PM
This situation kind of reminds me of the Cleveland Indians in the mid 90's. They had Jim Thome at 1b with guys like Richie Sexson and Sean Casey coming up in the pipeline. Both Sexson and Casey were dealt to add missing pieces to the Indians.

To me minor leaguers are pawns. Some you protect and some you sacrifice. If Alonso goes gang busters in AAA this season that only increases his trade value. If he does I sit down with Votto and discuss the situation. I work out a contract extension with him at the same time but also talk about his thoughts on a move to LF. If he is against it, then I trade Alonso, if he is for it then I see how it goes.

If Alonso ends up becoming Dave Burba, it will be kind of a downer IMO.

Ron Madden
03-04-2010, 04:12 AM
Yup.

I feel that sometimes people become so attached to Reds prospects as they come up through the system that they often forget that these guys are just assets that need to be cultivated, shuffled, and cultivated again until the end result is a 25 man roster that can win major league games.

BINGO!

dougdirt
03-04-2010, 04:15 AM
1B is a non issue. It's Joey Votto's until he can't play there, his bat fades or is traded. LF is the open position and Alonso is the odd man out. I doubt we ever see Alonso and Votto on the field together in a regular season game. One or the other, maybe.

So if a scenario presents itself that makes the team better to move Joey Votto to LF you aren't going to do it? You would rather have a worse team than move Votto to LF?

MikeS21
03-04-2010, 08:09 AM
So if a scenario presents itself that makes the team better to move Joey Votto to LF you aren't going to do it? You would rather have a worse team than move Votto to LF?
No, I think what we are saying is that we believe that there is no conceivable scenario that will ever present itself where this team is made better by moving Votto to LF just so Alonso can play 1B.

In fact, it probably would be a BETTER scenario to move Todd Frazier to LF. Fraizer is lights out better defense than either Votto or Alonso in LF right now. And Fraizer's offense is MUCH better right now as well. Or platooning Dorn with Gomes could be a greater improvement.

Alonso needs to first prove he even belongs in the majors.

Nasty_Boy
03-04-2010, 09:33 AM
Wow, I'm with Doug on this one... I can't believe that you guys think there is no way that Alonso becomes the kind of bat the Reds want/need in the lineup with Votto. Doug is 100% correct that you make whatever move is best for the success of the team, and I believe that Alonso will be very much like Votto at the plate. They need more guys like him and less guys like, say a Francisco. Nobody expect Votto to hit at the level he hit at last season. Most expect him to be a .850ish first baseman... Well I think its a very real possibility that Yonder Alonso turns into a .900+ OPS guy at the big league level. And quite honestly, I don't think that all of Joey's demons are behind him. So as Doug said, let things play out and let the chips fall where they may but I would be in no hurry to trade Alonso.

lollipopcurve
03-04-2010, 09:37 AM
So as Doug said, let things play out and let the chips fall where they may

That's exactly not what doug is saying. Doug is saying make Votto take a spring training tutorial in LF -- even though Votto has expressed a preference not to play LF.

Because Alonso might do well in Louisville.

That's not letting things play out.

bucksfan2
03-04-2010, 09:42 AM
I think TRF brings up some very valid points. This Alonso Votto discussion isn't made in a vacuum, other players come into the mix when looking at this situation. The likes of Frazier, Heisey, Francisco, etc. also play into this discussion. Is Votto at 1b, Frazier in LF, + prospect from Alonso > Votto in LF + Alonso at 1b? Its really a question you have to ask and consider. The answer isn't really clear and changing positions isn't exactly as easy as it sounds.

Nasty_Boy
03-04-2010, 09:45 AM
You don't move Votto yet. You wait for the other situations to play out, but you prepare Votto today so you don't have to do so in the future when it will take longer IF you decide that is the best route for the team to take. You don't move Votto until you decide what to do with Alonso (and he needs to push the gas pedal hard and heavy before making a move), but if you decide you want both Votto and Alonso on the same team Votto to LF is the only option that makes any real sense.

I read that as planning ahead because you have faith in your drafting, evaluation, and projections of Alonso. And I wouldn't let Joey tell me what position he's playing or where he wants to play. You tell him he's playing the position that makes the team better, and right now that's 1st base but it may not be a year from now. Doug isn't saying that Votto is going to be moved unless a couple of things happen, but he's saying your prepare for them incase they do. And having Joey do a little OF work isn't going to hurt a thing... And if he's so fragile mentally that he can't take some flyballs, just in case or for the good of the team, do we want to move forward with that guy as the center of our lineup? Don't get me wrong, I love me some Joey Votto but the front office can't make decisions based on whose feelings they may hurt.

Nasty_Boy
03-04-2010, 09:48 AM
What if Rolen gets hurt, because he does get hurt, or starts to decline a more rapid pace? Then aren't you better with Alonso at 1st, Votto in LF, and Frazier at 3rd? This decision doesn't have to be made right away, and I'm not against moving Alonso but this situation isn't cut and dry.

lollipopcurve
03-04-2010, 10:08 AM
And if he's so fragile mentally that he can't take some flyballs, just in case or for the good of the team, do we want to move forward with that guy as the center of our lineup?

Larkin didn't want to move to 2B to make room for Stillwell. Nor did he want to hit leadoff. Does that mean he was fragile mentally?

Votto has moved all around the diamond in his professional career. Started at catcher, went to 3B, played a little OF. Now he's at first -- I figure he's allowed to say where he's most comfortable.

It's really incredibly simple -- make Alonso prove something before you make Votto do something he is not comfortable doing.

Why mess with the way your best player is getting ready for the season -- who's currently working his tail off to be the best defender he can be at the position he has earned -- because there's a minor leaguer who might hit well in AAA? It makes no sense whatsoever.

TRF
03-04-2010, 10:18 AM
Moving Votto based on the premise that a guy with 80+ minor league games MIGHT explode by July, A guy that had a broken hamate bone, which according to doug will sap his power for about a year meaning he likely WON't explode until after July seems premature. At best.

so, doug, what if Heisey doesn't make the club out of ST and has this line at the ASB: .280 .375 .470? and he plays plus defense? And at the same time Alonso puts up similar numbers? And both do this at AAA. Are you saying you'd still move Votto to LF for Alonso?

IslandRed
03-04-2010, 10:23 AM
Why mess with the way your best player is getting ready for the season -- who's currently working his tail off to be the best defender he can be at the position he has earned -- because there's a minor leaguer who might hit well in AAA? It makes no sense whatsoever.

That's where I am. Don't force an issue before the situation calls for it.

I understand that the scenario might come to pass where Alonso is raking but it turns out he can't play the outfield acceptably, and they figure the Alonso 1B/Votto LF alignment is the push the club needs. But that won't happen for a few months at least, and by then, any outfield refresher course Votto might have taken this spring would have worn off. But he's played it before, he won't be a complete beginner. If they decide that's how it has to be, throw him an outfielder's glove, send him out to shag some balls and write it on the lineup card. Until then, don't get in his head about it.

camisadelgolf
03-04-2010, 10:24 AM
I'm just guessing, but I think Doug wants in the lineup whoever makes the best team, whether that means having Votto at 1B, LF, C, or anywhere else.

Nasty_Boy
03-04-2010, 10:30 AM
Nothing has been said except Alonso projects to be a certain type of hitter, but I can't believe you guys all think there isn't a situation where Alonso doesn't become a better hitter and fielder at 1st than Votto.

But I'm trusting that I scouted, drafted, and developed a guy that is a middle of the order bat... A guy that has put up darn good numbers in a short amount of time in pro ball. And IMO, the odds of Chris Heisey out producing Votto and Alonso at the ML level is very unlikely although I do think he can be a solid big leaguer... but even with plus defense in LF, give me the bats at 1st and LF and I'll take the chance they won't hurt me on defense.

It just comes across that you guys are dismissing Alonso. I realize he hasn't earned the right to be the 1st baseman in Cincy, and that he's a one position player... But have bat will play... And I believe that Alonso and Votto will post very similar numbers at the big league level. And if the Reds think that is a possibility then they need to have a plan B.

Nasty_Boy
03-04-2010, 10:33 AM
I'm just guessing, but I think Doug wants in the lineup whoever makes the best team, whether that means having Votto at 1B, LF, C, or anywhere else.

Same thing with Alonso... If he could play LF, that's the easy solution but Votto can play a better LF than Alonso. It would be great if Alonso could catch, but a guy on the 40 man roster learning to catch (probably in the low minors) is a much bigger crapshoot than moving an athletic 1st baseman with LF experience back to the OF. And of course, this is only after Alonso hits in the minors. WE GET THAT! lol

bucksfan2
03-04-2010, 10:46 AM
Nothing has been said except Alonso projects to be a certain type of hitter, but I can't believe you guys all think there isn't a situation where Alonso doesn't become a better hitter and fielder at 1st than Votto.

But I'm trusting that I scouted, drafted, and developed a guy that is a middle of the order bat... A guy that has put up darn good numbers in a short amount of time in pro ball. And IMO, the odds of Chris Heisey out producing Votto and Alonso at the ML level is very unlikely although I do think he can be a solid big leaguer... but even with plus defense in LF, give me the bats at 1st and LF and I'll take the chance they won't hurt me on defense.

It just comes across that you guys are dismissing Alonso. I realize he hasn't earned the right to be the 1st baseman in Cincy, and that he's a one position player... But have bat will play... And I believe that Alonso and Votto will post very similar numbers at the big league level. And if the Reds think that is a possibility then they need to have a plan B.

I take issue with these two statements. I think some have sold the production Votto has put together in his first couple of years. Last season he was 3 in the NL in OPS, with only Pujols and Fielder putting up a better season. Votto also doesn't slump against either handed pitcher. He truly is a good all around bat.

Alonso may very well be a good bat, but I just don't know if he can put the type of numbers that Votto did last season.