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nemesis
06-21-2010, 03:49 PM
After another excellent start last night and 7 starts in a row where he has went 6 innings twice and 6.2 or more 5 times, it's proof positive he is in a groove.

In those 7 starts his #'s are:

3-2 record / ERA of 1.89 / 47.2 innings / 31 hits / 10 BB's / 47 K's and a WHIP of 0.860...

Dominate.

In his last 41 starts spanning all last season and this one since developing a cutter and taking a couple MPH of his fastball his #'s are...

17-11 record / ERA of 2.34 / 257.2 innings / 199 hits / 75 BB's / 223 K's and a WHIP of 1.06. He has only given up 15 HR's in those same innings even though he is 1 to 1 on FO vs GO. Meaning they aren't getting good wood on the ball even when they do make contact. Keep in mind all these numbers are on a poor infield in Carolina and a poor defensive team in Louisville behind him this season.

In his last 41 starts he has given up 80 runs. Not earned runs. All runs. 80. That's less than 2 per start. He has only given up 67 earned runs in that same time frame. He is giving his team an average of 6.1 innings per start even on a limited pitch count, even with poor defenses running his pitch count up.

If his last name was Chapman these numbers would make him a Top 2 or 3 pitching prospect in all of Baseball and have RZer's in a Fevered Foaming Fury.

That's the rub. That's what I don't get. It's not like Wood hasn't paid his dues. He has pitched at every level in the Reds system from the GCL to AAA. He has had success at every level he has pitched at. Every one. The highest ERA he has posted before getting promoted at any level was 3.66 that was his first full season in the minors and probably battled arm fatigue late in the year. The next highest was 2.70 and the next was 1.82 and the next was 1.21 and the next was 0.75. Dominate. Dominate. Dominate.

He has pedigree. He was a 2nd round draft choice. 2 rounds ahead of Sam LeCure and one behind Bruce. 2nd round draft choices are supposed to be in the majors in 5 years. He is in year 6. He is 23. He has built up his arm strength. He is ready.

He was the last cut in spring training and was thiiiiiis close to making the ODR as the 5th starter. He is a change of pace guy. No he isn't a BIG arm like Cueto, Bailey, Volquez or Chapman. Neither is Leake. Half the board has an unhealthy crush on him though. Wood does have his supporters on here, I am aware of that. He has more than his fair share of ho hummers who think he is all smoke and mirrors. His numbers show, he is a pitcher. A real legitimate pitcher. He could have mentally imploded after his horrible run in AA in 2008. He instead developed a new pitch, change his throwing motion, rehabbed his arm harder and trusted his stuff.

I am not sold on the idea of using him as trade bait. Not to say I wouldn't. But he is a Tom Browning, he is a David Wells type, he could be a Cliff Lee. He has succeeded and excelled at every level. What's to say he wouldn't be a 10 year answer in the rotation here?

It's a nice problem to have I'll admit. The trades the Reds make in the next 6 weeks could go along way towards the continued push towards competitiveness year in and year out vs mortgaging the future for one winning season.

Keep in mind if the Reds do trade for Lee and keep Harang in the deal, the Reds will have 3 starting pitchers who could be FA at seasons end. You demote Bailey to the bullpen which screws with his head, limits his innings, hurting the team next year and who knows if he will even be effective. Volquez will be limited on innings next year, Leake will be limited to around 200 ~ 210, Chapman to around 150 to 180.

So now you've got 4 pitchers on limited innings going into next year.

Volquez ~ 170ish
Cueto ~ 220 (if he becomes more pitch efficient)
Leake ~ 200
Chapman ~ 150 - 180
Bailey ~ 170 to 180 (if you stick him in the Bullpen)

That rotation will eat a bullpen alive without mercy.

So what do you do? Pick up Harang's option? Not likely. Arroyo has a declining K rate and an increasing BB rate. He is trending in a bad bad direction and eventually he will implode... Probably sooner than later. In this scenario your going to need Wood who'll be available for up to 220 innings. There is no one else short of a 27 year old Matt Maloney in the system who can do that next year.

I say stay the course with what you have and continue to build from within... Or make a trade with Bailey (not Cueto) who I think both are going to figure it out eventually for Haren or another top pitcher with PRODUCTIVE years left on his contract...

Go with

Traded Starter
Arroyo
Cueto
Harang
Leake and Volquez (alternate starts)

for the remainder of the season. Let what may happen, happen.

Next year go into it with

Traded starter ~ (no limit)
Volquez ~ 150/170
Cueto ~ 220
Leake ~ 200
Wood ~ 210

Let the rotation mature together and give Chapman an extra month of two in the Minors to make sure he is ready ready. Move Wood to the Pen and then at or near the Deadline move the traded for starter and his contract for needs replace Wood in the Rotation and your set with 5 perfectly slotted arms going into their primes for 2 or 3 years with affordable salaries.

Volquez
Chapman
Leake
Cueto
Wood

GIDP
06-21-2010, 03:54 PM
Pretty long post, didnt read it just yet, but I do agree we should see him up sooner than later. I do have 1 thing to say, do we chance him coming up and not being anything more than a 3 at most or try to trade him at a pretty peak value.

I guess what I'm saying is he a perfect trade piece or is he a perfect keeper?

nemesis
06-21-2010, 04:07 PM
Pretty long post, didnt read it just yet, but I do agree we should see him up sooner than later. I do have 1 thing to say, do we chance him coming up and not being anything more than a 3 at most or try to trade him at a pretty peak value.

I guess what I'm saying is he a perfect trade piece or is he a perfect keeper?

Keeper. The Reds have 3 guys maybe 4 who are legit #1 arm types in Cueto, Volquez, Bailey and Chapman. Leake is a perfect #2 or 3. No one can tell me Wood couldn't fill that 4 or 5 spot with 190+ innings 70 BB's 160 K's and 10 to 12 wins year in and year out. You can't trade those kinds of players for 15 to 18 starts outta of a guy... Not smart baseball. Trade Alonso, Trade Heisey, trade AA or lower pitching. Not AAA ML ready starting pitchers. If a guy is more than a rental then yes, they become much more readily available for trade.

GIDP
06-21-2010, 04:19 PM
Keeper. The Reds have 3 guys maybe 4 who are legit #1 arm types in Cueto, Volquez, Bailey and Chapman. Leake is a perfect #2 or 3. No one can tell me Wood couldn't fill that 4 or 5 spot with 190+ innings 70 BB's 160 K's and 10 to 12 wins year in and year out. You can't trade those kinds of players for 15 to 18 starts outta of a guy... Not smart baseball. Trade Alonso, Trade Heisey, trade AA or lower pitching. Not AAA ML ready starting pitchers. If a guy is more than a rental then yes, they become much more readily available for trade.

Fair enough. Im leaning more towards that hes more the type of guy you deal. Then again I'm always going to keep the TOR guys, and be more willing to deal the BOR safer guys.

HokieRed
06-21-2010, 04:30 PM
I keep Wood and try to get a deal where we help the other team without sending a lot of talent--i.e. by helping them get salary relief, which we can offer because we're not going to renew Harang and Arroyo. That spells Roy Oswalt to me if the Astros can be gotten to do it.
One thing Walt's got to keep an eye on with Wood is that he's already at 90 innings. If he's going to have a significant number of quality innings at the ML level, he's to be brought up pretty soon. My late 2010 rotation: Oswalt, Volquez, Cueto, Wood, Arroyo (Leake not past 140, Homer on DL). 2011: Oswalt, and the best 4 of Volquez, Cueto, Wood, Chapman, Bailey, Leake, LeCure if all those guys can be protected in the trade.

OnBaseMachine
06-21-2010, 04:39 PM
Nice post, nemesis. I agree that it's time to bring Wood up, either as a reliever or let him get some starts in Lecure's spot. He has been very good in Louisville this season. I watched him pitch a couple times on TV during spring training and I came away impressed with his stuff. From what I saw, he's not a junkballer who gets by on fooling people. He's got legit stuff, IMO. I think he's got enough stuff to be a solid major league starter.

GOYA
06-21-2010, 04:47 PM
IMO, Wood isn't quite ready. There's still something very shaky about him. He does get stronger in later innings which tells me that he may not put up similiar numbers as a reliever. He's not as good as he was last year. He gives up flyballs quite a bit. I just don't see him contributing any more than LeCure right now. But I WOULD like to see how LeCure could do out of the pen.

nemesis
06-21-2010, 04:52 PM
IMO, Wood isn't quite ready. There's still something very shaky about him. He does get stronger in later innings which tells me that he may not put up similiar numbers as a reliever. He's not as good as he was last year. He gives up flyballs quite a bit. I just don't see him contributing any more than LeCure right now. But I WOULD like to see how LeCure could do out of the pen.

Goya, you would know better than most of us probably seeing him in person the most. But I ask, if his peripherals are solid as they seem to be especially over his last 7 starts, is his shakiness because he feels he has to be perfect because the offense down there is so terrible or he is worried about the defense behind him?

Just different kinds of shaky....

lollipopcurve
06-21-2010, 04:54 PM
Hard to say for me, since I haven't seen Wood except for a short spring training outing.

But I will say I have been pleasantly surprised by Lecure. He's got a solid array of pitches that he commands quite well. Savvy pitcher who should get better with experience around the league. BOR, sure, but cheap, healthy, competent BOR is nothing to sneeze at. This makes me feel that if a deal is out there for an ace, Wood could be sacrificed as part of a package without real pain. Doesn't mean that I want Wood dealt, just that there's more depth to deal from than I anticipated at the beginning of the year. I'd rather see Lecure dealt, but I doubt he draws the interest that Wood does.

kaldaniels
06-21-2010, 04:55 PM
Why we are fiddling around with LeCure when we have Wood makes no sense to me.

mdccclxix
06-21-2010, 04:59 PM
I've kind of flip-flopped on Wood. I had him as my #1 prospect after last season, yet from what I've witnessed, I've come away unimpressed with his control.

I just wonder how he'll do against top level hitters, even the 7th and 8th hitters in MLB lineups. If he lets too many on base via BB, it could get ugly.

If it was out of hand this year, I'd say sure, let's let him get his lumps, but not right now with a good record. He's a September call up, for sure, and perhaps sooner if there's another injury. Next year, he's back to battling for the 5th spot.

nemesis
06-21-2010, 05:06 PM
I've kind of flip-flopped on Wood. I had him as my #1 prospect after last season, yet from what I've witnessed, I've come away unimpressed with his control.

I just wonder how he'll do against top level hitters, even the 7th and 8th hitters in MLB lineups. If he lets too many on base via BB, it could get ugly.

If it was out of hand this year, I'd say sure, let's let him get his lumps, but not right now with a good record. He's a September call up, for sure, and perhaps sooner if there's another injury. Next year, he's back to battling for the 5th spot.

But that's the thing he has a better walk ratio than any starting pitcher on the Reds current starting staff. He is at like 2 walks per 9 innings...1.5 walks per start... I don't understand how people get that he walks the house. In his last 10 starts he has walked more than 2 people twice. 4 on May 13th and 3 May 23rd and only gave up 4 hits and 1 Run in that start. 6 times in his last 10 he has walked ZERO or 1 batters.

fearofpopvol1
06-21-2010, 05:13 PM
I think Wood could do as well if not better than Lecure at the MLB level. I think he should be given a shot at the bare minimum.

mdccclxix
06-21-2010, 05:51 PM
But that's the thing he has a better walk ratio than any starting pitcher on the Reds current starting staff. He is at like 2 walks per 9 innings...1.5 walks per start... I don't understand how people get that he walks the house. In his last 2 starts he has walked more than 2 people twice. 4 on May 13th and 3 May 23rd and only gave up 4 hits and 1 Run in that start. 6 times in his last 10 he has walked ZERO or 1 batters.


Perhaps I didn't see the best of Wood, but what I did see was him against big league hitters and it wasn't the best. Maybe he didn't have his best stuff that day.

In general, I agree with you that he's a) paid his dues b) ready to be tested c) dominant in AAA.

If, since 2009, his declining FB% and rising GB% is indicative of his future, then perhaps he is that #3 starter. But since those improved #'s coincide with the addition of his cutter, and since that cutter wasn't fooling anyone when I watched, I'm still a bit open to possibly selling high on Wood.

Then again, if he stays and sits in AAA until September, I'm fine with it. He's not likely going to be better than a developing #5 starter for the next 2-3 years, IMO, so no need to rush. He could / should be a # 3 by the time he's 25-26 if his velocity stays around 92.

He is a decent bullpen option now, although like GOYA said, he struggles early sometimes.

Overall, after Lecure's showing, I'm really anxious to see what Wood and Maloney can do.

nemesis
06-21-2010, 05:57 PM
That's the thing that gets me. Everybody on this board knows LeCure is not in this teams plans as a future starter. There is slim to none chance he is in the running for a starters job in the Spring. Wood was in the mix til the last hour. Why not bring up the guy you almost took vs someone most people view as a non hitting Micah Owings? If Bailey is going to miss significant time why run out your 4th horse in AAA vs your #2?

GOYA
06-21-2010, 06:04 PM
Goya, you would know better than most of us probably seeing him in person the most. But I ask, if his peripherals are solid as they seem to be especially over his last 7 starts, is his shakiness because he feels he has to be perfect because the offense down there is so terrible or he is worried about the defense behind him?

Just different kinds of shaky....

I would start with saying his peripherals are not as solid as they seem. It's true he doesn't give up walks much but when his control is lacking, he tends to throw something over the middle, and we all know what happens to those pitches. Against Durham, he gave up 8 hits and 2 walks in 6.2 innings. Durham is a strong lineup offensively, but not as strong as an average MLB team.

Wood is a strikeout pitcher. When he's on his game, the defense doesn't matter much.

I don't think he feels like he has to be perfect, it just that he's not missing bats like he used to. He has lapses in control. That's the shakiness.

But I must say, he has improved a LOT since the beginning of the season. He seems to be getting his confidence back along with better control. It's just not all there yet.

mdccclxix
06-21-2010, 06:04 PM
That's the thing that gets me. Everybody on this board knows LeCure is not in this teams plans as a future starter. There is slim to none chance he is in the running for a starters job in the Spring. Wood was in the mix til the last hour. Why not bring up the guy you almost took vs someone most people view as a non hitting Micah Owings? If Bailey is going to miss significant time why run out your 4th horse in AAA vs your #2?

I don't have an answer for that. It's a great question.

GOYA
06-21-2010, 06:13 PM
Wood was in the mix til the last hour. Why not bring up the guy you almost took vs someone most people view as a non hitting Micah Owings? If Bailey is going to miss significant time why run out your 4th horse in AAA vs your #2?

I think the answer is very simple. Performance. What have you done for me lately?

And LeCure was the #1 starter in Louisville from opening day. For whatever that is worth.

Will M
06-21-2010, 06:17 PM
I've seen enough of Lecure as a starter. He has "replacement level" stamped on his forehead. Moving him to the pen is fine with me but I am all for Wood (or Maloney) replacing him in the rotation right now.

IMO if the team wants to play in the postseason another SP is a must. Back the truck up for Haren would be my plan if i ran the team.

2010:
Haren (or other #3 or better starter via trade)
Leake/Volquez (Leake to the pen in the 2nd half)
Cueto
Arroyo
Bailey when healthy, Wood or Maloney
----------------------------------
Cordero
Rhodes
2nd acquisition (even just an average guy who can put up a 4.50 ERA)
Leake after July 7th
Harang (long relief)
last 2 spots: Bray, Burton, Lecure, DRH, Owings, Masset, etc. Hopefully a couple of the endless guys we have tried in the pen can be solid in the 2nd half.

in 2011 the rotation would be Haren, Volquez, Leake, Cueto, Bailey, Chapman, Wood (thats seven deep). Haren would be a massive upgrade both for 2010 & 2011. With Haren & a hopefully healthy Volquez heading the rotation it lets guys like Wood & Chapman develop without putting too much pressure on them.

mth123
06-21-2010, 08:17 PM
My take:

The Reds have a bunch of young guys who aren't really established already there in Cueto, Leake, soon Volquez, eventually Chapman and hopefully Bailey. The team doesn't need another young guy with back end potential. It has enough young guys with better potential.

I do however agree that Wood seems ready to make that next step to MLB. Its why he's the perfect guy to deal for an ace. An Ace is what this team needs, not another question mark trying to make the jump and establish himself. The team would appear to have plenty of depth with Chapman at the high end and Lecure and Maloney for the back end. Wood seems like the most likely guy to go for that ace. I do agree that I'd like to see a guy who will be here for more than a couple months. Its why I want Oswalt and not Lee. Harang, Wood, Alonso/Heisey, Fisher and Sulbaran for Oswalt and Lindstrom. Oswalt will be the Ace in 2010 and 2011. Dealing Harang makes the money work, Dealing Wood, Fisher and Sulbaran gets Oswalt and Lindstrom. Dealing Alonso or Heisey gives them an guy for taking Harang's Salary.

nemesis
06-21-2010, 08:25 PM
I've seen enough of Lecure as a starter. He has "replacement level" stamped on his forehead. Moving him to the pen is fine with me but I am all for Wood (or Maloney) replacing him in the rotation right now.

IMO if the team wants to play in the postseason another SP is a must. Back the truck up for Haren would be my plan if i ran the team.

2010:
Haren (or other #3 or better starter via trade)
Leake/Volquez (Leake to the pen in the 2nd half)
Cueto
Arroyo
Bailey when healthy, Wood or Maloney
----------------------------------
Cordero
Rhodes
2nd acquisition (even just an average guy who can put up a 4.50 ERA)
Leake after July 7th
Harang (long relief)
last 2 spots: Bray, Burton, Lecure, DRH, Owings, Masset, etc. Hopefully a couple of the endless guys we have tried in the pen can be solid in the 2nd half.

in 2011 the rotation would be Haren, Volquez, Leake, Cueto, Bailey, Chapman, Wood (thats seven deep). Haren would be a massive upgrade both for 2010 & 2011. With Haren & a hopefully healthy Volquez heading the rotation it lets guys like Wood & Chapman develop without putting too much pressure on them.

Co-sign. But to get Haren your gonna have to give up Bailey, Alonso and a bullpen type arm... I'd do it. Would you?

Redsfan320
06-21-2010, 08:53 PM
That's the thing that gets me. Everybody on this board knows LeCure is not in this teams plans as a future starter. There is slim to none chance he is in the running for a starters job in the Spring. Wood was in the mix til the last hour. Why not bring up the guy you almost took vs someone most people view as a non hitting Micah Owings? If Bailey is going to miss significant time why run out your 4th horse in AAA vs your #2?

You don't think LeCure will even be in the race for 5th starter next year? He's certainly held his own. Don't get me wrong, he's done nothing great, but he's at least worthy of being in the 5th starter race next year, IMO.

320

lidspinner
06-21-2010, 08:57 PM
Co-sign. But to get Haren your gonna have to give up Bailey, Alonso and a bullpen type arm... I'd do it. Would you?


Heck yeah I do that deal.....but I dont think it will take Bailey, I see it taking Maloney and Lecure/Wood....I dont think they will want Homer....call me crazy but Homer just does not seem like the type that teams are gonna fight over...Zona is going to want someone who they can groom and I am not sure Homer fits that type..maybe I am wrong....But here is my take

Go get Haren...give up Yonder and some fluff and grab our #1. Then later in the year bring up Wood and Chapman to give spot starts for Leake and Volquez...Edinson is probably going to need a rest from time to time. Then at years end dump AH and BO....so our rotation looks like this in 2011

Dan Haren
Edinson V
JCueto
Leake/chapman/wood(someone has to go to pen)
Homer

that screams of a darn fine rotation and screams of dominance.

OK, we should still have some cash in there as I see no reason why we dont up payroll a little next year....and with no Aaron or Bronson we have more loot to boot. So our pitching looks good with Maloney and Lecure in AAA, not to mention the others that are showing promise....so then we need to go get a hitter, a true bonafide SS that hits....I am not sure who that is, but the money should be there..............Then sign Votto to a LTC.

Guys, what we have here is a future. I see a future that can go in so many different directions and its so fun to sit and think about all the different ways the front office can go...we have not had this kind of options in a loooonnnggg time. We have what appears to be the makings of a 5 year run of great teams. If we can somehow find a way to keep building from within, man we could go on a decade long run. And that my friends is what we all have been waiting on for so long.

Nemesis..great post. I like reading long thought out posts like that. Keep em comming pal.

nemesis
06-21-2010, 09:31 PM
Thank you greatly lidspinner.

I really think it would take Bailey though. Their Farm System is void at the upper Minors. They traded Buckner for Willis and who knows if he implodes in a week or a year, Lopez is probably a one year stop gap. Webb's status is up in the air... They really made out with Ian Kennedy and Jackson for Scherzer in effect, So really if they deal Haren their most valuable piece and anchor of the rotation they are going to need a long term piece to be behind Kennedy and bring in at least a 1B and a bullpen arm or two. I'd be open to sending Harang, Herrera, Bailey, Alonso, Maloney, Fisher and some cash for Heilman and Haren. Team is 10 wins better on the season from that move alone... Move Up Bray to replace Herrera, Volquez for Bailey, Haren for Harang. Bam. Done. Arizona gets a workhorse to finish out the season, Bailey to compliment Kennedy Alonso to build around at 1B and some arms for a bullpen that makes ours look down right All Star.

Win Win.

Superdude
06-21-2010, 11:04 PM
I don't think he feels like he has to be perfect, it just that he's not missing bats like he used to. He has lapses in control. That's the shakiness.

He's not missing bats like he used to? Wood's struck out 88 batters in 90 innings this year. He only struck out around 7 per nine last year, and that number was much lower when he moved to Louisville.

kaldaniels
06-22-2010, 01:08 AM
You don't think LeCure will even be in the race for 5th starter next year? He's certainly held his own. Don't get me wrong, he's done nothing great, but he's at least worthy of being in the 5th starter race next year, IMO.

320

I don't want LeCure anywhere near the 5th starter spot.

GOYA
06-22-2010, 01:38 AM
He's not missing bats like he used to? Wood's struck out 88 batters in 90 innings this year. He only struck out around 7 per nine last year, and that number was much lower when he moved to Louisville.

OK, make it missing the fat part of the bats. He's getting hit much harder. He's still doing well and it may just be that AAA hitters have seen him enough to start getting better swings on him

Will M
06-22-2010, 02:32 AM
Co-sign. But to get Haren your gonna have to give up Bailey, Alonso and a bullpen type arm... I'd do it. Would you?

i'd do it yesterday.

GIDP
06-22-2010, 02:36 AM
Co-sign. But to get Haren your gonna have to give up Bailey, Alonso and a bullpen type arm... I'd do it. Would you?

I would probably not like it at the time, but if Haren pitches like Haren of the last few years Id be ok in the long run probably.

GOYA
06-22-2010, 03:07 AM
Why worry about picking up another starter when the bullpen is such an obvious weakness?

lidspinner
06-22-2010, 06:50 AM
Why worry about picking up another starter when the bullpen is such an obvious weakness?


I am just guessing here...but maybe the Reds think they have members of the bullpen already on roster...who knows, maybe they are thinking Lecure can go there...maybe Travis Wood. We already know they are grooming Chapman to be a starter...so unless they dump Harang and Bronson, then someone is going to pen if not traded. Here is what our starters very well could look like next year minus BO and AH..I am going off readiness to pitch at the MLB level.

Homer
Edinson
Cueto
Wood
Lecure
Chapman
Maloney
Leake

These guys are almost sure fire starters for some team next year....so mayeb the Reds are planning on adding a few of them to the pen..who knows, but it sure is fun to think about.

GIDP
06-22-2010, 08:39 AM
Why worry about picking up another starter when the bullpen is such an obvious weakness?

The bullpen has talent in it, that just a year ago was pretty lights out. That being said, less you have to see the bullpen the better. A starting pitcher is going to improve the team more than any reliever ever will.

nemesis
06-22-2010, 01:18 PM
Why worry about picking up another starter when the bullpen is such an obvious weakness?

If you can get a top shelf starter that can go 7, 8 ~ 9 innings a start that's one less game you have to see the bullpen every 5 days. Makes the bullpen better by absence.