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Ron Madden
02-02-2011, 03:48 PM
Here's a Q&A article from St Louis.

http://www.stltoday.com/sports/columns/round-two/article_033834e8-2e2e-11e0-ac0c-00127992bc8b.html

Homer Bailey
02-02-2011, 03:58 PM
That was a very entertaining read. Lots of delusion over in their camp.


The Reds are coming off a 91-win season in which Scott Rolen gave them an MVP-caliber first half, Joey Votto gave them an MVP season and they won a disproportionate number of games late. There is reason that those elements will seek a return to the mean this season.

Um.... what Joe?


The Cincinnati Reds are the next best contenders because of their pitching depth, although their offense appears a bit shy. Then Milwaukee will be next with the Chicago Cubs as an outside shot. .

Yeah, the best offense in the NL that lost.... well.... no one.... yeah their offense does seem a bit shy, right?


I think the Cardinals slight favorites -- they have the best position player and best starting pitcher in the division, with a strong supporting cast behind them

That's clearly debateable.

bucksfan2
02-02-2011, 04:05 PM
That was a very entertaining read. Lots of delusion over in their camp.


The Reds are coming off a 91-win season in which Scott Rolen gave them an MVP-caliber first half, Joey Votto gave them an MVP season and they won a disproportionate number of games late. There is reason that those elements will seek a return to the mean this season.

Um.... what Joe?

There is some truth to this. Does Votto play at a MVP level again? Does Rolen play at an All Star level again? The Reds got very good years out of a lot of players and didn't upgrade substantially at any position. They are counting on their younger players to take a step up. IMO its a valid question.




The Cincinnati Reds are the next best contenders because of their pitching depth, although their offense appears a bit shy. Then Milwaukee will be next with the Chicago Cubs as an outside shot. .


Yeah, the best offense in the NL that lost.... well.... no one.... yeah their offense does seem a bit shy, right?

If you were to ask me if the Reds had the best offense in the NL last year I would have disagreed. To me their offense was missing something, another batter to compliment Votto. Its still a question heading into 2011. So yea I think their offense appears a bit shy. Valid point.





I think the Cardinals slight favorites -- they have the best position player and best starting pitcher in the division, with a strong supporting cast behind them

That's clearly debateable.

I am a huge Votto fan but Pujols is still the best player in the division and probably the game. They both had similar seasons with Votto getting the MVP because the Reds won the division.

I read the article and came away thinking it was a homer job of an article. No one predicted against the Cards. The only think I agree on is that the Pirates and Astros will be bad next season. If I were predicting I would predict:

1. Reds
2. Brewers
3. Cards

Your top dog until someone takes you down. The Reds took the Cards down last season and look to stay at the top. The Brewers made some big moves in the off season and look to be legit contenders. I think they need a fast start in order to stay relevant. If they don't start off fast look for a full out fire sale mid season with both Fielder and Grienke being moved. The Cards remain up here because of two TOR pitchers as well as two MVP caliber position players. I do see more injury concerns on the Cards than any other team in the division. Carpernter is always an injury risk, Wainright was shut down at the end of last season, and Berkman is aging and I doubt he can play a full season.

medford
02-02-2011, 04:16 PM
How long is it going to take the Cards to realize Berkman can't cut out in LF? That team could be really, really bad defensively.

Homer Bailey
02-02-2011, 04:29 PM
There is some truth to this. Does Votto play at a MVP level again? Does Rolen play at an All Star level again? The Reds got very good years out of a lot of players and didn't upgrade substantially at any position. They are counting on their younger players to take a step up. IMO its a valid question.

Votto may not win the MVP again this year, but there is no rational reason to believe he won't be a .950+ OPS hitter. His season wasn't really an outlier compared to his career numbers.

The comments also refuse to acknowledge how young the Reds are, and a lot of their players still have not even reached their peak yet, and if you look at the jumps that Stubbs and Bruce made over the last few months, it's likely the Reds will be an even stronger force next year.




If you were to ask me if the Reds had the best offense in the NL last year I would have disagreed. To me their offense was missing something, another batter to compliment Votto. Its still a question heading into 2011. So yea I think their offense appears a bit shy. Valid point.

The Reds led the NL in runs last year, and scored 54 more runs than the Cardinals. Best offense in the NL.



I am a huge Votto fan but Pujols is still the best player in the division and probably the game. They both had similar seasons with Votto getting the MVP because the Reds won the division.

These statements are opinions disguised as facts, much like the statements made in the article.

RedsManRick
02-02-2011, 04:33 PM
It never ceases to amaze me how hard it is for people to get away from their own biases -- even when they know they have them. Wheeler seems like the only truly objective guy in the bunch. I'm sure the Reds' hometown guys would be no better -- they be suggesting that the division is close but that the Reds are the "slight favorites".

Just funny to me how transparent the evaluation process is. Step 1) Arrive at conclusion based on intuition (which is highly colored by bias). Step 2) Find evidence that supports your conclusion and ignore/omit that which does not.

But it's really the simplistic statements that drive me nuts. Rick Hummel does absolutely nothing to support his apparent assertion that it is your 2 best position players and pitchers which determine the quality of the team. Goold only talks about the rotations and argues that the Cards' is the best in part because it has "five starters in place". Borowsky argues that the Cards have a strong support cast, when they may very well have the weakest middle infield in baseball.

I understand the nature of an article like that. You don't win any friends by talking down the home team. But still, it's like eating bit-o-honey candies. Not only are they not good for you, but they don't really taste that good either. But hey, at least it's candy, right?

kaldaniels
02-02-2011, 04:41 PM
To bucksfan, best offense in the NL does not mean it is the perfect offense, just that they were better than all the other teams in the NL...which they were. Who was better than the Reds in 2010?

westofyou
02-02-2011, 04:47 PM
I understand the nature of an article like that. You don't win any friends by talking down the home team. But still, it's like eating bit-o-honey candies. Not only are they not good for you, but they don't really taste that good either. But hey, at least it's candy, right?

I like Bit-O-Honey's I think they taste good.

Not everyone spends their baseball time "evaluating" some just ingest the candy that the paper feeds them, after all once it's read it's used to line the birdcage, it's not exactly baseball grad school if it's in the paper.

kaldaniels
02-02-2011, 04:47 PM
I know Vegas is not the know all end all, and some of their odds are skewed to how the general public is betting, so they are not necessarily the actual odds.

But today the odds on sportsbook.com for the NL Central for 2011 are

STL even
CIN +300
MIL +350

So I can't say it is crazy for someone to predict the Cards winning it.

Homer Bailey
02-02-2011, 04:51 PM
I know Vegas is not the know all end all, and some of their odds are skewed to how the general public is betting, so they are not necessarily the actual odds.

But today the odds on sportsbook.com for the NL Central for 2011 are

STL even
CIN +300
MIL +350

So I can't say it is crazy for someone to predict the Cards winning it.

Those odds surprise the heck out of me. I see TONS of value in the Reds there.

And I'm not suggesting it's crazy for someone to predict the Cards to win it. I'm not even criticizing the STL writers for picking the Cardinals. It's very realistic that they win the division. But a lot of their comments to support their "analysis" are just either plain wrong, or just biased, unsupported opinions.

kaldaniels
02-02-2011, 04:54 PM
Those odds surprise the heck out of me. I see TONS of value in the Reds there.

And I'm not suggesting it's crazy for someone to predict the Cards to win it. I'm not even criticizing the STL writers for picking the Cardinals. It's very realistic that they win the division. But a lot of their comments to support their "analysis" are just either plain wrong, or just biased, unsupported opinions.

Well go get you some of them sweet odds my friend. :thumbup:

Oh, and if anyone wants some action on the Pirates at +10000, just PM me and I'll set up (pocket the money) the transaction for you. :D

But Homer, I do agree...the analysis was totally unsupported.

bucksfan2
02-02-2011, 05:00 PM
To bucksfan, best offense in the NL does not mean it is the perfect offense, just that they were better than all the other teams in the NL...which they were. Who was better than the Reds in 2010?

To me it just seemed as if the Reds were bolstered by a higher share of outlier games than other teams. To me it just seemed at times as if they struggled mightily to score runs and then would go and play the Astros and score 15 and 12 runs in back to back games.

If I were taking teams over the Reds based upon my perception of offense I would take the Phillies, Rockies, and Brewers offense over the Reds. IMO they have the potential to be a top 5 offense in the NL.

PuffyPig
02-02-2011, 07:10 PM
To me it just seemed as if the Reds were bolstered by a higher share of outlier games than other teams. To me it just seemed at times as if they struggled mightily to score runs and then would go and play the Astros and score 15 and 12 runs in back to back games.

If I were taking teams over the Reds based upon my perception of offense I would take the Phillies, Rockies, and Brewers offense over the Reds. IMO they have the potential to be a top 5 offense in the NL.

If it was true that the Reds were bolstered by a higher share of outlier games, their expected W-L record based on run differential wouldn't have been one win more than they actually got.

mdccclxix
02-02-2011, 07:39 PM
Can anyone else see the Brewers in 1st in August? If not, why not? They've got two aces, a strong 3rd, and an offense to go nuts with. They're a "darkhorse", but should be picked 1st as often or more than any other team. Perhaps a weak bullpen will do them in?

Screwball
02-02-2011, 07:59 PM
To me it just seemed as if the Reds were bolstered by a higher share of outlier games than other teams. To me it just seemed at times as if they struggled mightily to score runs and then would go and play the Astros and score 15 and 12 runs in back to back games.


Yeah, all those runs they scored those few games don't really count. You can only factor in the games where they didn't score a bunch, because those games where they scored a lot makes them rank higher than where I think they should be.

kaldaniels
02-02-2011, 08:13 PM
Can anyone else see the Brewers in 1st in August? If not, why not? They've got two aces, a strong 3rd, and an offense to go nuts with. They're a "darkhorse", but should be picked 1st as often or more than any other team. Perhaps a weak bullpen will do them in?

I agree. It is gonna be a dogfight all year if you ask me. Each team has obvious pros and cons, and personally right now, I'd give MIL,STL,and CIN each about 33% chance of winning the division. I have a very hard time (and as of yet can't) convince myself that odds are that the Reds win the Central this year. They have 2 forminable opponents.

Screwball
02-02-2011, 09:08 PM
Can anyone else see the Brewers in 1st in August? If not, why not? They've got two aces, a strong 3rd, and an offense to go nuts with. They're a "darkhorse", but should be picked 1st as often or more than any other team. Perhaps a weak bullpen will do them in?

Not to mention a shoddy defense. But yeah, that's gonna be a tough team to beat this year. We'll find out just how tough right out of the gate too. The Reds and Brewers lock up for the opening series, which means Greinke, Gallardo, and Marcum square off against our top three.

Tommyjohn25
02-02-2011, 11:18 PM
I see the achilles heel of the Brewers being their bullpen. Axford looks good I guess, b ut I'll take the Reds bully 1,000 times over MIL.

Hoosier Red
02-03-2011, 10:29 AM
Those odds surprise the heck out of me. I see TONS of value in the Reds there.

And I'm not suggesting it's crazy for someone to predict the Cards to win it. I'm not even criticizing the STL writers for picking the Cardinals. It's very realistic that they win the division. But a lot of their comments to support their "analysis" are just either plain wrong, or just biased, unsupported opinions.

Okay I've never understood the betting lines in terms of +300. Does that mean if you bet $100 and win you would win $300, where as if you bet $100 on the Cardinals, you would win $200?($100+$100 back?)

Hoosier Red
02-03-2011, 10:32 AM
To me it just seemed as if the Reds were bolstered by a higher share of outlier games than other teams. To me it just seemed at times as if they struggled mightily to score runs and then would go and play the Astros and score 15 and 12 runs in back to back games.

If I were taking teams over the Reds based upon my perception of offense I would take the Phillies, Rockies, and Brewers offense over the Reds. IMO they have the potential to be a top 5 offense in the NL.

I think what you're missing Bucksfan is that this happens to every team. That's why they keep the Astros and the Pirates in the league :)

A team can't pick what nights it's offense will explode, and in reality, if the Cardinals did it against the Giants(which would be impressive) but failed to do it against the Pirates(which would show they are less impressive) then it all evens out.

I put the Reds offense up against the Brewers offense to illustrate the point.
REDS


# of Total % %
Games Runs of of
Scored games runs
10 + 17 188 10% 24%
9 6 54 4% 7%
8 6 48 4% 6%
7 16 112 10% 14%
6 16 96 10% 12%
5 21 105 13% 13%
4 16 64 10% 8%
3 29 87 18% 11%
2 13 26 8% 3%
1 10 10 6% 1%
0 13 0 8% 0%

BREW CREW


# of # of Total % of % of
Runs Games Runs Games Runs
10+ 12 163 7% 22%
9 3 27 2% 4%
8 14 112 9% 15%
7 10 70 6% 9%
6 14 84 9% 11%
5 13 65 8% 9%
4 26 104 16% 14%
3 25 75 15% 10%
2 19 38 12% 5%
1 12 12 7% 2%
0 14 0 9% 0%

Homer Bailey
02-03-2011, 11:22 AM
Okay I've never understood the betting lines in terms of +300. Does that mean if you bet $100 and win you would win $300, where as if you bet $100 on the Cardinals, you would win $200?($100+$100 back?)

If the Reds are +300, if you bet 100 on the Reds, you get your 100 back, plus $300 in profit. The Cards are even money, so if you bet them, you get your $100 back, and $100 in Profit.

+300 is a way of saying the Reds have 3/1 odds, while the Cards have 1/1 odds.

Chip R
02-03-2011, 12:02 PM
How long is it going to take the Cards to realize Berkman can't cut out in LF? That team could be really, really bad defensively.


IIRC, he's going to be playing RF which is worse.

It's not exactly a stretch to believe they could win the NL Central. Those 3 top guys in their rotation can shut you down. They still have Pujols and Holliday. If LaRussa and Rasmus can kiss and make up and Rasmus doesn't weigh 120 lbs. by August running for all those balls Berkman can't get to in RF and Freese can come back and play at the level he played at before he got hurt, they could win the division.

If they don't get this Pujols situation straightened out (and this goes for MIL too re: Fielder) it could be a huge distraction. While he plays - and plays well - through a lot of injuries, Pujols isn't the most durable guy around and he's not getting younger. The back end of their rotation's a mess and - except for Franklin - their bullpen's nothing to write home about.

Dan
02-03-2011, 12:06 PM
To me, the Reds offense holds steady. The only downturn I see is Rolen, because of his back issues. (The Rolen contract is something we're all going to be railing about come this time next year.) If Fransisco can adequately handle himself at third, it won't be a killer. Gomes could also take a step back, and I'm not totally sold on Lewis. That said, the steps forward by Stubbs and especially Bruce should make up for that. I also think Renteria is going to give a solid performance at SS.

What they're lacking is a TOR hammer. I think Cueto can be that guy, but it's going to take him another step or two to get there. Not an easy thing, but he's got the talent and ability.

However, I think the Reds will win a lot of games at the back of the rotation to make up for the lack of that hammer. This is where the Cardinals will lack, as will the Brewers and Cubs. Neither team can go 7 deep (or more...LeClure, Maloney, Thompson, even Willis could all give you a solid game or two in a pinch) with ML quality starters the way the Reds can. When you've got 3 possible #2-3 starters going against 2 journeymen and one AAAA starter, you're going to win more games over the long haul.

Hoosier Red
02-03-2011, 12:53 PM
If the Reds are +300, if you bet 100 on the Reds, you get your 100 back, plus $300 in profit. The Cards are even money, so if you bet them, you get your $100 back, and $100 in Profit.

+300 is a way of saying the Reds have 3/1 odds, while the Cards have 1/1 odds.

That's insane. Why would anyone bet even money odds on the Cardinals?
I would expect each of them to be about 3.33/1 odds.

My biggest fear is that this reflects the rest of the world knows something we (fans) don't. I'm a big fan of the wisdom of crowds.

Homer Bailey
02-03-2011, 01:00 PM
That's insane. Why would anyone bet even money odds on the Cardinals?
I would expect each of them to be about 3.33/1 odds.

My biggest fear is that this reflects the rest of the world knows something we (fans) don't. I'm a big fan of the wisdom of crowds.

I don't see it that way. I see it as most betters are what's known as "squares", meaning they bet with what public perception is. The Reds had something like a 3 game lead in August of last year, and the Cardinals were still the betting favorite to win the division. "The public" probably sees the Reds as a one time fluke, and they see the Berkman/Theriot acquisitions as huge boosts to the Cardinals, when in actuality its debateable whether or not they are improvements at all.

Same line of thinking will go with the AL East this year. I'm sure the Yanks will be heavily favored over the Rays just based on public perception, but the value would be the Rays finishing ahead of the Yankees (although I think the Red Sox win the East easily next year).