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Phhhl
02-18-2011, 04:10 PM
I thought this was a dead issue. But, Billy Hatcher suggests Alonso is making progress as an outfielder. Can he really be so awful that it is a complete write off? The reports have been brutal, but I'm glad if the club is not completely giving up on the idea just yet. Would love to see him get some time there this spring. He is really useless to this team if he can't make some kind of transition. Despite the fact that he can hit, teams aren't going to step up big in a deal for him knowing the Reds are compromised either.

Redsfan320
02-18-2011, 04:12 PM
It would be awesome if he could fit in there. If we're gonna look at this realistically, where does he hit in the batting order? 6th, behind Bruce and Rolen? O/c, if he's in LF, then we're stuck with Stubbsley or BP leading off.

320

Phhhl
02-18-2011, 04:20 PM
In an ideal world, I guess you could envision him in the same slot as Gomes. They would be interchangeable as platoon partners, not only by position by by the place in the order, and one would be available off the bench to pinch hit against match ups late in the game. Of course, that basically ignores every move Walt did this winter to try and address left field, so the probability of it happening even if Alonso improves himself this spring may be remote. But, they have to do something with the kid. Maybe by late season he will be a viable option out there, and then could head into 2012 with a larger role.

_Sir_Charles_
02-18-2011, 04:45 PM
I think we're at the point when we're going to have to make some deals. Not necessarily Alonso, but we've got a LOT of youngsters who are ML ready but are blocked by multiple players.

Yonder is blocked by Joey and the plethora of guys vying for LF.
Frazier is blocked at 3rd by Rolen, 2nd by Phillips, and one of many in LF.
Francisco...Rolen and LF.
Dorn...LF & Bruce
Heisey...LF & Stubbs
Valiaka....Rolen, Phillips (I think people are saying he's not a SS anymore...not sure I agree)
Many others are in the same situation. It's almost like there's not a plan in place for these kids and we're just jerking them around from week to week.

And this isn't even touching the catching situation or the pitching. Basically put, we need to settle some of these guys into stable positions or deal a few in a package to get a higher level prospect who's more focused to fit our needs. This fiddling around with guys at multiple positions is just not working from my perspective. If we want Yonder to learn LF...then stick him over there and let him play it day-in and day-out for the season. Not a few times a week. Same for Todd Frazier. These guys have bats that play at the ML right now IMO, give them some stability in terms of defensive positions and then they can focus on honing those skills.

Benihana
02-18-2011, 05:03 PM
I think we're at the point when we're going to have to make some deals. Not necessarily Alonso, but we've got a LOT of youngsters who are ML ready but are blocked by multiple players.

Yonder is blocked by Joey and the plethora of guys vying for LF.
Frazier is blocked at 3rd by Rolen, 2nd by Phillips, and one of many in LF.
Francisco...Rolen and LF.
Dorn...LF & Bruce
Heisey...LF & Stubbs
Valiaka....Rolen, Phillips (I think people are saying he's not a SS anymore...not sure I agree)
Many others are in the same situation. It's almost like there's not a plan in place for these kids and we're just jerking them around from week to week.

And this isn't even touching the catching situation or the pitching. Basically put, we need to settle some of these guys into stable positions or deal a few in a package to get a higher level prospect who's more focused to fit our needs. This fiddling around with guys at multiple positions is just not working from my perspective. If we want Yonder to learn LF...then stick him over there and let him play it day-in and day-out for the season. Not a few times a week. Same for Todd Frazier. These guys have bats that play at the ML right now IMO, give them some stability in terms of defensive positions and then they can focus on honing those skills.

While I agree in principle, the only guy you mentioned with substantial trade value at this point is Alonso. Heisey and Francisco would be small pieces to add to a deal, while Fraizer needs a serious bounceback year to have any value in a trade. Valaika and Dorn have zero trade value and would if anything be DFA candidates/dealt for PTBNL or cash.

_Sir_Charles_
02-18-2011, 05:08 PM
While I agree in principle, the only guy you mentioned with substantial trade value at this point is Alonso. Heisey and Francisco would be small pieces to add to a deal, while Fraizer needs a serious bounceback year to have any value in a trade. Valaika and Dorn have zero trade value and would if anything be DFA candidates/dealt for PTBNL or cash.

Well, I wasn't thinking about a 1 player for 1 player deal if we were to go the route of trading some of these kids, but rather a package of multiple youngsters. But more realistically, we'd be better served by solidifying positions for them rather than dealing them away. It would obviously depend upon our need and the specific package. But since I'm not in the room that makes those calls I won't get into specific trades...settling positions should be VERY high on the priority list.

And lastly, I disagree about these kids having little to no trade value. 1 for 1, yes...there will be little value. But packaged...these kids can be valuable commodities.

edabbs44
02-18-2011, 05:48 PM
Well, I wasn't thinking about a 1 player for 1 player deal if we were to go the route of trading some of these kids, but rather a package of multiple youngsters. But more realistically, we'd be better served by solidifying positions for them rather than dealing them away. It would obviously depend upon our need and the specific package. But since I'm not in the room that makes those calls I won't get into specific trades...settling positions should be VERY high on the priority list.

And lastly, I disagree about these kids having little to no trade value. 1 for 1, yes...there will be little value. But packaged...these kids can be valuable commodities.

Dorn has next to no value any way you slice it.

The Operator
02-18-2011, 06:05 PM
Can he really be worse defensively than Jonny Gomes or Adam Dunn?

The Reds have pretty much decided that LF isn't a position that they have to have great defense at, so if Yonder is even remotely passable out there, his bat is probably worth giving the idea a chance.

TheNext44
02-18-2011, 06:09 PM
Can he really be worse defensively than Jonny Gomes or Adam Dunn?

The Reds have pretty much decided that LF isn't a position that they have to have great defense at, so if Yonder is even remotely passable out there, his bat is probably worth giving the idea a chance.

Yes he absolutely can be worse. I have no idea if Alonso would be, but David Ortiz, Ryan Howard, Jim Thome, Vlad and others would be much worse defensively in left than Gomes or Dunn.

Redsfan320
02-18-2011, 06:25 PM
Another point, although the big league team comes first, is if Yonder's in LF, then who plays 1B for Lou? I'm sure one of our minor-league savvy guys can answer.

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corkedbat
02-18-2011, 06:39 PM
While I won't complain about anyone being dealt for the right return, I'd kind of like to hang onto Frazier. I don't see him being an all-star starter at any spot, but I think his value as a utility guy who has some punch of the bench and can fill in at several spots in a pinch is more than you will get in return for him in a deal. I'd make him a bench fixture for three or four years while he's cheap unless someone knocks Walt over with an offer.

Scrap Irony
02-18-2011, 06:49 PM
Another point, although the big league team comes first, is if Yonder's in LF, then who plays 1B for Lou? I'm sure one of our minor-league savvy guys can answer.

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Dorn

Brutus
02-18-2011, 06:55 PM
Dorn

I don't understand how that can be. He was exposed to the Rule 5 draft. Surely there was no way he didn't get selected!

Redsfan320
02-18-2011, 07:00 PM
Dorn

With him at 1st, and Balentin and Burke both gone, who's in the OF?

Of course, there's also the carousel: If Alonso is in LF, where's Frazier. If he goes back to 3rd, where's Francisco?

320

membengal
02-18-2011, 07:03 PM
I see no reason to be reflexively bad mouthing Alonso's continued efforts to learn left. In fact, I think this is fantastic news. I would love for them to let him play out there a ton in AAA this year and see if he can get even a little comfortable out there. And it sounds like he has plenty of "want to", which is great.

Gomes/Lewis for this year in LF is fine, but I would be thrilled if Alonso can get competent enough to potentially be an option out there next year. At any rate, I love that he is trying. Great sign.

Scrap Irony
02-18-2011, 07:56 PM
With him at 1st, and Balentin and Burke both gone, who's in the OF?

Of course, there's also the carousel: If Alonso is in LF, where's Frazier. If he goes back to 3rd, where's Francisco?

320

Sappelt, Heisey, Frazier, Hermida, and Barton are all among the AAA OF candidates. (Heisey if Alonso makes the Reds, as Lewis can back up all three OF spots)

RED VAN HOT
02-18-2011, 08:41 PM
I think the trade value of the talented AAA players will come into play at the trade deadline in July.

edabbs44
02-18-2011, 08:41 PM
Yes he absolutely can be worse. I have no idea if Alonso would be, but David Ortiz, Ryan Howard, Jim Thome, Vlad and others would be much worse defensively in left than Gomes or Dunn.

According to UZR, there are a few guys who are consistently worse than Gomes. And, in fact, some who are a lot worse.

TRF
02-18-2011, 09:29 PM
Just like to point out, injured hamate aside, Alonso has yet to put up numbers as good as Dorn at any level.

Cedric
02-18-2011, 09:33 PM
Just like to point out, injured hamate aside, Alonso has yet to put up numbers as good as Dorn at any level.

Talent can be projected. Plenty of people would have been reasonable in arguing if Drew Stubbs had a true shot at being a Major leaguer. That would be based on his minor league numbers before last year.

High draft guys like Alonso and Stubbs are going to get way more leeway on the projection part of their game.

edabbs44
02-18-2011, 09:42 PM
Talent can be projected. Plenty of people would have been reasonable in arguing if Drew Stubbs had a true shot at being a Major leaguer. That would be based on his minor league numbers before last year.

High draft guys like Alonso and Stubbs are going to get way more leeway on the projection part of their game.

Alonso, as a 23 year old, had better numbers in AAA than Dorn did as a 24 year old.

And Votto, as a 23 year old in AAA, had slightly better numbers than Alonso did at the same stage.

It isn't always apples to apples.

hebroncougar
02-18-2011, 10:22 PM
Man, if he could play LF, and provide average defense, that's a huge, huge boost.

MartyFan
02-18-2011, 10:55 PM
I think we're at the point when we're going to have to make some deals. Not necessarily Alonso, but we've got a LOT of youngsters who are ML ready but are blocked by multiple players.

Yonder is blocked by Joey and the plethora of guys vying for LF.
Frazier is blocked at 3rd by Rolen, 2nd by Phillips, and one of many in LF.
Francisco...Rolen and LF.
Dorn...LF & Bruce
Heisey...LF & Stubbs
Valiaka....Rolen, Phillips (I think people are saying he's not a SS anymore...not sure I agree)
Many others are in the same situation. It's almost like there's not a plan in place for these kids and we're just jerking them around from week to week.

And this isn't even touching the catching situation or the pitching. Basically put, we need to settle some of these guys into stable positions or deal a few in a package to get a higher level prospect who's more focused to fit our needs. This fiddling around with guys at multiple positions is just not working from my perspective. If we want Yonder to learn LF...then stick him over there and let him play it day-in and day-out for the season. Not a few times a week. Same for Todd Frazier. These guys have bats that play at the ML right now IMO, give them some stability in terms of defensive positions and then they can focus on honing those skills.

I don't think Rolen or Phillips either one are going to be a block on this team much longer...Rolen will be better served reducing his playing time this year and thereafter by becoming more of a mentor and example for the kids.

In my gut, I don't see Phillips here after this year either...depending on how the season goes, he could be traded this year.

Blitz Dorsey
02-19-2011, 12:54 AM
There sure is no downside here. I still think (and hope) Yonder will start the season at Louisville and will be very successful down there for a couple months. He'll get the majority of his starts at 1B but will probably get a few starts in LF as well. Then even if Votto is healthy, the Reds can call up Alonso in June or so as kind of the ultimate bat off the bench. It would be the best of both worlds: He would get a bunch of at-bats for two straight months in triple-A ... and then he could help the Reds as a super sub the rest of the way. He could get an occasional start at 1B if Votto needs a rest (much better option than starting Cairo at 1B even though he played well last year ... can't expect that to continue with Cairo though) and could even get the occasional start in LF if things work out with this "experiment." And then the games when he doesn't start, Dusty would always use him as a pitch-hitter at some point in the game.

Phhhl
02-19-2011, 02:14 AM
Another point, although the big league team comes first, is if Yonder's in LF, then who plays 1B for Lou? I'm sure one of our minor-league savvy guys can answer.

320

Is that really a concern? We have relatives in Louisville, and I can tell you that noone down there gives a d*** about the Reds. They are all big sports fans, but it's all about U of L. When it comes to baseball, there are as many New York Yankee fans and Red Sox fans as Reds fans. It's a lost cause for now. That franchise serves one purpose, and that it is to deliver what the Reds needs it to do to get players ready to play in Cincinnati. I don't care who plays first base for the Bats. Their sole purpose is to get players ready to help the Cincinnati Reds win Major League Championships.

mth123
02-19-2011, 05:27 AM
If Alonso would somehow go north with the Reds as a part of the LF mix, I'd hope that Francisco would play 1B at AAA so that Todd Frazier could get a crack at 3B every day.

Scrap Irony
02-19-2011, 07:06 AM
Is that really a concern? We have relatives in Louisville, and I can tell you that noone down there gives a d*** about the Reds. They are all big sports fans, but it's all about U of L. When it comes to baseball, there are as many New York Yankee fans and Red Sox fans as Reds fans. It's a lost cause for now. That franchise serves one purpose, and that it is to deliver what the Reds needs it to do to get players ready to play in Cincinnati. I don't care who plays first base for the Bats. Their sole purpose is to get players ready to help the Cincinnati Reds win Major League Championships.

Cincinnati has a very large following in and around Louisville. There are pockets of Cardinal fans (as the Redbirds were the Louisville affiliate for a decade) and the Red Sox (old school Boston affiliate years ago) and Yankees (becayse they're everywhere). However, by and large, Louisville is a Red town.

It is true that Cincinnati shouldn't care about Louisville's roster, when trying to improve their own. If Alonso can play a passable LF and provide more value than Fred Lewis (that's who he'll be replacing) in a platoon with Gomes (don't assume Gomes is going back to the bench, as Baker and the team love Gomes' attitude) offensively and defensively.

membengal
02-19-2011, 07:12 AM
I still don't see the downside nor the reason to be anything but pleased with Alonso's attitude and effort to learn LF. If there is any way at all he can get passable enough out there to get his bat onto this team in as the left fielder in 2012, well, that would be tremendously exciting news.

mth123
02-19-2011, 07:31 AM
I still don't see the downside nor the reason to be anything but pleased with Alonso's attitude and effort to learn LF. If there is any way at all he can get passable enough out there to get his bat onto this team in as the left fielder in 2012, well, that would be tremendously exciting news.

Agreed. I hope we don't have to wait that long, but we probably will.



From Sheldon's article
Baker was not able to promise that Alonso would get time in left field during spring games, especially with Jonny Gomes, Fred Lewis, Jeremy Hermida and others likely to get action in the outfield. Alonso will continue to play first base behind Votto as well and try to earn a place on the Reds' bench out of camp.



Looks pretty doubtful that Alonso could impress enough this spring to move up in line. I'd guess in 2011 Lewis, Gomes, Heisey, Hermida, Tom, Dick and Harry will all get a look before Alonso does. Hopefully Lewis-Gomes works out ok and makes it a non-issue. I'd like to see the Reds take a chance an making a huge improvement by giving Alonso a real shot to kick down the door instead of just treading water by going with mediocre vets.

Redsfan320
02-19-2011, 08:25 AM
Is that really a concern? We have relatives in Louisville, and I can tell you that noone down there gives a d*** about the Reds. They are all big sports fans, but it's all about U of L. When it comes to baseball, there are as many New York Yankee fans and Red Sox fans as Reds fans. It's a lost cause for now. That franchise serves one purpose, and that it is to deliver what the Reds needs it to do to get players ready to play in Cincinnati. I don't care who plays first base for the Bats. Their sole purpose is to get players ready to help the Cincinnati Reds win Major League Championships.


Sure. I was just asking, somebody has to play there, the org. is then at 1st, so who would it be? I don't care who. I don't care if they're crap there. I was just curious as to who it would be. It seems the answer is Dorn.

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HokieRed
02-19-2011, 08:46 AM
If Alonso would somehow go north with the Reds as a part of the LF mix, I'd hope that Francisco would play 1B at AAA so that Todd Frazier could get a crack at 3B every day.

Agree. I think this is the first thing that's got to be answered conclusively, one way or the other, about Frazier, because I don't believe he's got enough bat to be a corner outfielder.

membengal
02-19-2011, 09:53 AM
I don't see any need to rush the LF process for Alonso, mth. For better or worse, they've cast their die with Gomes/Lewis/Heisey in LF this year. That will be league average, if I had to make a guess.

As for Alonso, I really hope the Reds have the courage to stick him in LF every day (or close to it) down in AAA. If there is any chance at all he can make that transition and get that bat to the club starting next year, it would do two things. One, it would fill the LF hole nicely (and cost-effectively). Two, it would keep his bat in the organization as a hedge in case they really can't re-sign Votto for 2014 and beyond. The above assumes that his power returns this year and he hits like he was projected to...

I don't see a lot of downside to them trying, and they have the luxury of a season to give it a shot. I like that Hatcher is reporting that Alonso is working hard and I like that Alonso worked in the off-season at it. Both positives from where I sit.

Worth a shot, anyway.

mth123
02-19-2011, 09:58 AM
I don't see any need to rush the LF process for Alonso, mth. For better or worse, they've cast their die with Gomes/Lewis/Heisey in LF this year. That will be league average, if I had to make a guess.

As for Alonso, I really hope the Reds have the courage to stick him in LF every day (or close to it) down in AAA. If there is any chance at all he can make that transition and get that bat to the club starting next year, it would do two things. One, it would fill the LF hole nicely (and cost-effectively). Two, it would keep his bat in the organization as a hedge in case they really can't re-sign Votto for 2014 and beyond. The above assumes that his power returns this year and he hits like he was projected to...

I don't see a lot of downside to them trying, and they have the luxury of a season to give it a shot. I like that Hatcher is reporting that Alonso is working hard and I like that Alonso worked in the off-season at it. Both positives from where I sit.

Worth a shot, anyway.

I still think the Reds are a bat short. Alonso could solve that problem. Those other guys not so much.

membengal
02-19-2011, 10:06 AM
In theory, mth, but I don't see any reason to think he would be remotely ready. So it will have to be AAA for a year, if they will even commit to it at all, I would guess.

As for a bat short...eh, don't know that I agree, but then again, I am higher on adding Lewis as a platoon guy to LF than most. I think they will score plenty of runs again this year. Their ability to match or exceed last season's win total will hinge on pitching improvement from my point of view.

jmcclain19
02-19-2011, 05:54 PM
Alonso should probably worry more about being a good hitter first than fooling around with playing left.

The guy's got a razor thin margin for making the team and his one tool that could force the Reds hand is still distinctly average. Not what you pay for when you draft #7 overall.

Two of the next three guys picked behind Alonso already have 1300 Major League PAs between them and he's pretty much responded with his bat at every level with a whimper rather than a triumphant bugle.

Everyone's been making excuses going on a couple of seasons now - 2011 is going to be a make or break year for Alonso's career IMO.

Before signing Gomes walking papers I think its still very much up to Alonso to prove if he could even come close to mimic'ing Gomes career.

kpresidente
02-20-2011, 07:38 PM
If Alonso would somehow go north with the Reds as a part of the LF mix, I'd hope that Francisco would play 1B at AAA so that Todd Frazier could get a crack at 3B every day.

But Frazier's the more established 3B, no? Francisco's the one that needs work. Maybe Frazier to 2B since we're going all experimental anyway. Dorn plays 1st.

Far East
02-20-2011, 08:40 PM
Here are two BIG "ifs."

If Alonzo had had one or two great minor league seasons already and if Votto hadn't already become an All Star first baseman, it might be Joey who was out there learning LF with Hatcher -- ala the Big Red Machine days, when veteran Rose returned to the infield to make room for slugger George Foster in left.

mth123
02-20-2011, 08:44 PM
But Frazier's the more established 3B, no? Francisco's the one that needs work. Maybe Frazier to 2B since we're going all experimental anyway. Dorn plays 1st.

How is Frazier more established? Francisco has been a 3B his whole career. He's probably not going to get any better by this point. Frazier has played a total of 53 games at 3B. I don't think you can really tell how a guy is going to perform at a position every day until he plays it every day.Spot play is different. If Frazier has a future as an every day player, 3B is the spot that would seem to match his offensive and defensive skillset the best. He needs to play it every day to see if its a valid option. I think the Reds already know that the MI isn't an option for more than a game here and there.

RedsManRick
02-20-2011, 11:09 PM
Alonso should probably worry more about being a good hitter first than fooling around with playing left.

The guy's got a razor thin margin for making the team and his one tool that could force the Reds hand is still distinctly average. Not what you pay for when you draft #7 overall.

If he's stuck on first base, no amount of hitting would force their hand. His only chance of making the Reds is if he can play somewhere else.

traderumor
02-21-2011, 07:58 AM
Alonso should probably worry more about being a good hitter first than fooling around with playing left.

The guy's got a razor thin margin for making the team and his one tool that could force the Reds hand is still distinctly average. Not what you pay for when you draft #7 overall.

Two of the next three guys picked behind Alonso already have 1300 Major League PAs between them and he's pretty much responded with his bat at every level with a whimper rather than a triumphant bugle.

Everyone's been making excuses going on a couple of seasons now - 2011 is going to be a make or break year for Alonso's career IMO.

Before signing Gomes walking papers I think its still very much up to Alonso to prove if he could even come close to mimic'ing Gomes career.I think a busted up hand is a valid excuse, though, and something that was beyond his control. A hitter loses more than the time they can't play at all with that injury, it often takes away from performance for awhile after coming back.

Redlegs
02-21-2011, 08:26 AM
Not sure how it'll work out for Yonder in left field. The Reds tried a similar experiment with Hal Morris and he was a complete hack in the outifield. I hope Yonder can play out there. It'd be great for the team. I think someone will have to really "WOW" the Reds before they let Alonzo go. Can't count on Votto being here past the three years.

The best part of the things I've read is the fact Yonder Alonzo has made it clear that he wants to be in Cincinnati. The Reds brass has done an outstanding job at turning things around in a short amount of time.

Roy Tucker
02-21-2011, 08:29 AM
What hasn't been said yet is that this appears to have put an absolute end to any talk of Votto in LF. Joey is now The Man.

Redlegs
02-21-2011, 08:31 AM
What hasn't been said yet is that this appears to have put an absolute end to any talk of Votto in LF. Joey is now The Man.I think three letters took care of that; MVP. :beerme:

kpresidente
02-21-2011, 08:37 AM
How is Frazier more established? Francisco has been a 3B his whole career. He's probably not going to get any better by this point. Frazier has played a total of 53 games at 3B. I don't think you can really tell how a guy is going to perform at a position every day until he plays it every day.Spot play is different. If Frazier has a future as an every day player, 3B is the spot that would seem to match his offensive and defensive skillset the best. He needs to play it every day to see if its a valid option. I think the Reds already know that the MI isn't an option for more than a game here and there.

Established was a bad word. I guess I just figured they'd seen enough of him there and were satisfied, and that's why they moved him to LF. You're right, though, 53 games isn't really a lot.

My only thing with Francisco to 1B is that it's basically giving up on his future with the Reds. If you're going to do that, you might as well just trade him, and if other teams think we've given up on him as a 3B, it's probably not going to help his value.

Maybe they should just split time. My hope is that the Reds see the two of them as a future platoon, since both guys have wide splits, and are fringy as full-time starters. But together, they could put up some big numbers. But really that depends on whether Francisco can even stick at 3B. I hadn't really questioned Frazer there so much, and I figure if you move him to 2B, even though he doesn't have a future there, at least he's playing the infield. And who knows, maybe he can handle it. It doesn't take as much range as SS, which was his problem there.

mth123
02-21-2011, 06:36 PM
Established was a bad word. I guess I just figured they'd seen enough of him there and were satisfied, and that's why they moved him to LF. You're right, though, 53 games isn't really a lot.

My only thing with Francisco to 1B is that it's basically giving up on his future with the Reds. If you're going to do that, you might as well just trade him, and if other teams think we've given up on him as a 3B, it's probably not going to help his value.

Maybe they should just split time. My hope is that the Reds see the two of them as a future platoon, since both guys have wide splits, and are fringy as full-time starters. But together, they could put up some big numbers. But really that depends on whether Francisco can even stick at 3B. I hadn't really questioned Frazer there so much, and I figure if you move him to 2B, even though he doesn't have a future there, at least he's playing the infield. And who knows, maybe he can handle it. It doesn't take as much range as SS, which was his problem there.

Don't disagree about Frazier and Francisco being a potential platoon, but Juan's value will go up with some 1B under his belt but it doesn't preclude him from playing 3B again in the future, and Frazier really needs to play 3B every day for a season. Stick Alonso in LF and a whole lot of questions about the near future get sorted out in 2011. The Reds already have a hole in LF and a real chance of having a problem at 3B soon with Rolen's health always a question mark. There realy isn't an answer to any of these problems beyond the group in AAA for quite a while. Time to find out IMO.

jmcclain19
02-21-2011, 11:17 PM
What hasn't been said yet is that this appears to have put an absolute end to any talk of Votto in LF. Joey is now The Man.

Exactly. Take a look at the 2010 threads at the silly discussions over people wanting to shift Votto to LF over a guy still in AA.

Amazing what an MVP award does.

jmcclain19
02-21-2011, 11:19 PM
If he's stuck on first base, no amount of hitting would force their hand. His only chance of making the Reds is if he can play somewhere else.

Seems to me any scouting report pretty much shoots down that notion right away. Reminds me of the Wily Mo/Kearns to play 3B stuff from a few years ago.

That's the danger in drafting a College 1B - he'd better hit like no tomorrow or he isn't really worth much of anything.

dougdirt
02-22-2011, 01:29 AM
Exactly. Take a look at the 2010 threads at the silly discussions over people wanting to shift Votto to LF over a guy still in AA.

Amazing what an MVP award does.

I still say move Votto to LF if its what is best for the team. I don't care what hardware he has at home, I care about those pennant like things that say World Series Champsions on them.

reds44
02-22-2011, 01:33 AM
Lets be hones there, Alonso's move to left has very little to do with how he plays in the field and a lot to do with how well he hits. If he bashes the ball, all of a sudden you will hear how his defense is better.

Morale of the story: the Reds will find a place for his bat if his bat is good.

jmcclain19
02-22-2011, 02:38 AM
I still say move Votto to LF if its what is best for the team. I don't care what hardware he has at home, I care about those pennant like things that say World Series Champsions on them.

If you are signing Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder or Adrian Gonzalez, sure.

But you don't move him for a guy whose been middling thru the minor league system.

The absolute best scenario left with Alonso, is they plop him in Louisville, he rakes all season, and at the deadline they are able to throw him in a deal with say someone like Volquez for a bigger piece.

edabbs44
02-22-2011, 09:25 AM
If you are signing Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder or Adrian Gonzalez, sure.

But you don't move him for a guy whose been middling thru the minor league system.

The absolute best scenario left with Alonso, is they plop him in Louisville, he rakes all season, and at the deadline they are able to throw him in a deal with say someone like Volquez for a bigger piece.

Have to agree...it's one thing if Alonso is mashing AAA and completely beating down the door. Same with if Votto wasn't the reigning MVP.

You force this move this spring and I'm sure that moves Joey one or two steps closer to the door come FA time.

lollipopcurve
02-22-2011, 09:31 AM
I still say move Votto to LF if its what is best for the team.

It wouldn't be best for the team.

What kind of message do you think it sends to guys on the major league roster that the team is going to move your best player against his wishes in order to take a chance on an unproven player?

It's the kind of move that might look good to someone with a pencil and piece of paper. But it's also the kind of move that fractures an organization.

IslandRed
02-22-2011, 10:53 AM
Amazing what an MVP award does.

Yep. It was a reasonable discussion to have when Votto was viewed as merely very good, not great. But after last season? There are no minor-league numbers Alonso could realistically put up that would make me say, on that basis, it's worth honking off our best player to make room for him. It's not like Votto is all that and a bag of Doritos in left field either.

If it's that important to get a bat in left field and Alonso can't play it at a minimally acceptable level, then that's what trades are for.

medford
02-22-2011, 11:43 AM
I believe most of the Votto to LF, Alonso to 1b chat, centered around the idea that many thought/believe Votto would be better equiped to play adequate defense in LF, while Alonso was pigeoned into a 1b or DH role.

Personally, if the team thought Alonso's bat could help them right now, but his defense would offset those pluses in left field, while being league average at 1b, and they thought Votto could handle LF, I'd be in favor of attempting the move. I think its stupid that somebody's feelings would be hurt if they had to move from one non premium defensive position to another non premium defensive position. I realize it doesn't really work that way, for whatever reasons, but if I was Votto, just put my name in the lineup and tell me where to play defense. I have no doubt that Votto would work hard to be as solid a LF as he has become at 1b.

Any move that is good for the team, while essentially non determental to the individual player, so be gladly accepted by said player. Sadly its not. Of course, I'm not sure that having Alonso in the lineup at any spot is better than the Votto @ 1b, & Gomes/Heisey/Lewis in LF arrangement. Get Alonso 120 games in LF down in Louisville, bring him up in September, then make the determination if you can go w/ him in LF next year, or if a position switch of Votto or a trade of Alonso needs to be made.

kaldaniels
02-23-2011, 05:00 PM
It wouldn't be best for the team.

What kind of message do you think it sends to guys on the major league roster that the team is going to move your best player against his wishes in order to take a chance on an unproven player?

It's the kind of move that might look good to someone with a pencil and piece of paper. But it's also the kind of move that fractures an organization.

It all comes down to Votto's opinion on any move (do we know what this is at this point?). Sorry Doug, but you just can't forcibly bump your non-declining MVP off first base because of an unproven, non-elite prospect (Alonso is solid, but elite is a stretch) rookie. Ramifications would be felt for years.

Now, if Joey was willing to give it a shot with a smile on his face, go for it. Absolutely.

RedsManRick
02-23-2011, 06:34 PM
It all comes down to Votto's opinion on any move (do we know what this is at this point?). Sorry Doug, but you just can't forcibly bump your non-declining MVP off first base because of an unproven, non-elite prospect (Alonso is solid, but elite is a stretch) rookie. Ramifications would be felt for years.

Now, if Joey was willing to give it a shot with a smile on his face, go for it. Absolutely.

To play devil's advocate:

- I don't think anybody is suggesting Votto move prior to Alonso forcing the Reds' hand
- Being an MVP doesn't preclude a team from asking/telling a player he's switching positions. Just ask A-Rod or Robin Yount.
- Alonso was just rated #73 overall by Baseball America, which is actually a step back for him. Now, sure, he's not Dom Brown or Eric Hosmer. But that suggests he's the 3rd best prospect in an average to good system. Definitions of elite may vary, but it's not like we're talking about a Chris Heisey type here either.

If Alonso hits .300/.400/.550 in AAA this year while struggling in LF and the Reds approach Votto about a move after the season, I think there's a strong likelihood we'd see Votto in LF with a smile on his face. Particularly if Joey is looking ahead towards FA, being able to play either LF or 1B only increases his value further.

Big Klu
02-24-2011, 01:17 AM
To play devil's advocate:

- I don't think anybody is suggesting Votto move prior to Alonso forcing the Reds' hand
- Being an MVP doesn't preclude a team from asking/telling a player he's switching positions. Just ask A-Rod or Robin Yount.
- Alonso was just rated #73 overall by Baseball America, which is actually a step back for him. Now, sure, he's not Dom Brown or Eric Hosmer. But that suggests he's the 3rd best prospect in an average to good system. Definitions of elite may vary, but it's not like we're talking about a Chris Heisey type here either.

If Alonso hits .300/.400/.550 in AAA this year while struggling in LF and the Reds approach Votto about a move after the season, I think there's a strong likelihood we'd see Votto in LF with a smile on his face. Particularly if Joey is looking ahead towards FA, being able to play either LF or 1B only increases his value further.

Both Alex Rodriguez and Robin Yount moved from a more difficult position to an easier one. (And in Yount's case, he voluntarily moved to CF at age 29 after spending 11 years as the Brewers' starting SS.)

I have noticed that there seems to be a trend on RedsZone to ask some of the Reds' best players to move against the current on the defensive spectrum--Votto from 1B to LF, and Phillips from 2B to SS. I don't see too many star players in other organizations making those kinds of position changes.

RedsManRick
02-24-2011, 02:10 AM
Both Alex Rodriguez and Robin Yount moved from a more difficult position to an easier one. (And in Yount's case, he voluntarily moved to CF at age 29 after spending 11 years as the Brewers' starting SS.)

I have noticed that there seems to be a trend on RedsZone to ask some of the Reds' best players to move against the current on the defensive spectrum--Votto from 1B to LF, and Phillips from 2B to SS. I don't see too many star players in other organizations making those kinds of position changes.

Fair points, but I think it cuts both ways. Sure, asking the guy to move up the spectrum may put him as risk of being worse and thus being embarrassed. But it also gives him financial leverage.

kpresidente
02-24-2011, 09:42 AM
Both Alex Rodriguez and Robin Yount moved from a more difficult position to an easier one. (And in Yount's case, he voluntarily moved to CF at age 29 after spending 11 years as the Brewers' starting SS.)


SS is more difficult than the hot corner? Not in my book. Catcher is the hardest position to play, 3B is next. You don't want to confuse "difficult" with "important". In the case of Votto, I'd say LF is easier than 1B, as long as you're not slow. No digging balls in the dirt, no screamers from the lefties.

Redsfan320
02-24-2011, 09:45 AM
SS is more difficult than the hot corner? Not in my book. Catcher is the hardest position to play, 3B is next. You don't want to confuse "difficult" with "important". In the case of Votto, I'd say LF is easier than 1B, as long as you're not slow. No digging balls in the dirt, no screamers from the lefties.

Well, I can attest that 1B is a pain (but I love it). However, regarding the SS-3B thing, I'm really not seeing how 3B is the harder one. I've never played either one though, so I'm certainly open to explanation.

320

kpresidente
02-24-2011, 09:55 AM
Well, I can attest that 1B is a pain (but I love it). However, regarding the SS-3B thing, I'm really not seeing how 3B is the harder one. I've never played either one though, so I'm certainly open to explanation.

320

3B plays closer to the batter, the balls get hit harder there, and you have a longer throw, plus you have to handle bunts. All of that means you have to make a lot of difficult plays. SS gets a lot of easy, routine grounders. Right handers trying to pull an outside pitch and such. I've played every infield position except 1B and including catcher. My order of difficulty goes like this: CA, 3B, SS, 2B.

RedsManRick
02-24-2011, 10:34 AM
3B plays closer to the batter, the balls get hit harder there, and you have a longer throw, plus you have to handle bunts. All of that means you have to make a lot of difficult plays. SS gets a lot of easy, routine grounders. Right handers trying to pull an outside pitch and such. I've played every infield position except 1B and including catcher. My order of difficulty goes like this: CA, 3B, SS, 2B.

Let's not confuse skill with athleticism. 3B may require more skill, but SS requires more athleticism. And looking around baseball,there are more guys who have the skill to play 3B adequately than guys who have the athleticism to play SS adequately.

11larkin11
02-24-2011, 10:37 AM
Let's not confuse skill with athleticism. 3B may require more skill, but SS requires more athleticism. And looking around baseball,there are more guys who have the skill to play 3B adequately than guys who have the athleticism to play SS adequately.

Having played both, I'd definitely say 3B is the hardest as you move up the ladder. You play deep, you open up the bunt. You play in, you get screaming one hoppers that you usually don't even see. SS obviously requires more athleticism, but 3B definitely takes more skill and is overall a harder position, IMO.

Big Klu
02-24-2011, 02:46 PM
SS is more difficult than the hot corner? Not in my book. Catcher is the hardest position to play, 3B is next. You don't want to confuse "difficult" with "important". In the case of Votto, I'd say LF is easier than 1B, as long as you're not slow. No digging balls in the dirt, no screamers from the lefties.

That may be your opinion, but the sabermetric view based on the defensive spectrum (created by Bill James in the 1980's) is as follows (from easiest to most difficult):

DH--1B--LF--RF--3B--CF--2B--SS

Pitcher and catcher are often considered "specialty" positions, due to their unique skillsets.

Players gradually move to the left along the spectrum as their defensive skills decline. They rarely "go against the current" and move to the right.

bucksfan2
02-24-2011, 02:55 PM
That may be your opinion, but the sabermetric view based on the defensive spectrum (created by Bill James in the 1980's) is as follows (from easiest to most difficult):

DH--1B--LF--RF--3B--CF--2B--SS

Pitcher and catcher are often considered "specialty" positions, due to their unique skillsets.

Players gradually move to the left along the spectrum as their defensive skills decline. They rarely "go against the current" and move to the right.

I don't think that is saber at all. IMO its more reality based upon years and years of evidence. Every once in a while you have someone with a unique skill set to go C-2B-CF.

Big Klu
02-24-2011, 03:00 PM
I don't think that is saber at all. IMO its more reality based upon years and years of evidence. Every once in a while you have someone with a unique skill set to go C-2B-CF.

The sites I checked listed it as a sabermetric idea (primarily, I suspect, because Bill James devised it).

remdog
02-24-2011, 03:12 PM
I've said this before (and I played 3B, SS and 2nd) and 3B is a reflex position. If you don't have quick hands (and feet) the ball will eat you up. At SS and 2nd you need quick hands a little less but more speed and range.

JMO.

Rem

bucksfan2
02-24-2011, 03:15 PM
The sites I checked listed it as a sabermetric idea (primarily, I suspect, because Bill James devised it).

I thought it was a Bill James idea, but didn't really think it took into consideration advanced saber type stats. Not big deal, just one of those thing when you try and think about makes a whole lot of sense. To be honest its very difficult to think of someone who went left to right on that list.

OnBaseMachine
02-24-2011, 03:32 PM
Speaking of Yonder, he switched agents according to Jerry Crasnick.

Yonder Alonso, #reds top pick in 2008, is now a Dan Lozano client. He said he switched from Legacy Sports "about a month ago.''

http://twitter.com/jcrasnick

Big Klu
02-24-2011, 03:48 PM
I thought it was a Bill James idea, but didn't really think it took into consideration advanced saber type stats. Not big deal, just one of those thing when you try and think about makes a whole lot of sense. To be honest its very difficult to think of someone who went left to right on that list.

I would think the most likely left-to-right move would be LF to RF, and that would most likely involve someone who had the skill to play RF from the beginning, but was just playing alongside an even better RF.

Big Klu
02-24-2011, 04:03 PM
I don't think that is saber at all. IMO its more reality based upon years and years of evidence. Every once in a while you have someone with a unique skill set to go C-2B-CF.

Also (and maybe this is the saber part of it), James says that as a player moves to the left on the spectrum (and therefore becomes less valuable defensively), he need to step up offensively to maintain his overall value.

bucksfan2
02-24-2011, 04:06 PM
Also (and maybe this is the saber part of it), James says that as a player moves to the left on the spectrum (and therefore becomes less valuable defensively), he need to step up offensively to maintain his overall value.

There's the saber.

You made a going point earlier about a LF-RF swap. I would imagine this spectrum has to do with overall skill set than anything else. You often see CF type players who move to LF or RF because there is a better defensive CF currently in place. Even looking back to Pokie Reese with the Reds. He was a SS but was moved off it to 2b because he wasn't going to move Larkin off SS.

IslandRed
02-24-2011, 05:17 PM
Players gradually move to the left along the spectrum as their defensive skills decline. They rarely "go against the current" and move to the right.

Right. It's not that third base is easier in absolute terms, but it's a little easier to fill. Most shortstops can slide over and play an acceptable third base; the reverse is not necessarily true.

Third base is demanding defensively, though. But guys are still expected to hit there. It might explain why third-sackers are relatively under-represented in the Hall of Fame.

Brutus
02-24-2011, 05:20 PM
Well, I can attest that 1B is a pain (but I love it). However, regarding the SS-3B thing, I'm really not seeing how 3B is the harder one. I've never played either one though, so I'm certainly open to explanation.

320

Glad to see you're a fellow 1B :)

kpresidente
02-24-2011, 08:40 PM
That may be your opinion, but the sabermetric view based on the defensive spectrum (created by Bill James in the 1980's) is as follows (from easiest to most difficult):

DH--1B--LF--RF--3B--CF--2B--SS

Pitcher and catcher are often considered "specialty" positions, due to their unique skillsets.

Players gradually move to the left along the spectrum as their defensive skills decline. They rarely "go against the current" and move to the right.


All that's expressing is a decline in athleticism, which is different than "ease" in the sense that it's being discussed here. SS takes a lot of speed and quickness, when you get old, your body simply can't do it any more, even if the spirit is willing. It's a physical thing. We're talking more about how demanding a position is. About how much a player might "want" to play a position. That assumes that he's athletically "capable" in the first place.

IslandRed
02-25-2011, 12:19 PM
All that's expressing is a decline in athleticism, which is different than "ease" in the sense that it's being discussed here. SS takes a lot of speed and quickness, when you get old, your body simply can't do it any more, even if the spirit is willing. It's a physical thing. We're talking more about how demanding a position is. About how much a player might "want" to play a position. That assumes that he's athletically "capable" in the first place.

Which might be true, but it's also not that relevant. The defensive spectrum is not an academic argument about the difficulty of various positions. It's a pragmatic recognition of the size of the pool of available players at various positions (which affects the amount of offense that can be reasonably expected), and the history-of-baseball-long path of transitioning from a more difficult position to a less difficult one. Argue the difficulty of third base all you want -- and I agree, it is quite difficult to play well -- but over baseball history, lots of major-leaguers have moved from shortstop to third base, permanently or temporarily; they hardly ever move from third base to shortstop. The "why" isn't important in context, it just is.

Roy Tucker
02-25-2011, 01:07 PM
I just think that SS calls upon a wider range of skills and abilities.

Yes, they may have more routine plays than 3B, but they also have more difficult plays to make where they have to go in the hole and make a hard throw, range over to 2B and make a quick chuck, sprint back for pop-ups ranging from foul territory to CF, charge slow hoppers, make the pivot or make the toss in double plays in the teeth of a baserunner, cover on steals, and oh yeah, be the leader of the infield defense and make the calls.

I do appreciate the difficulties of the plays at 3B though. It ain't a picnic there.

kpresidente
02-25-2011, 01:08 PM
IslandRed,

I'm sorry but you're wrong. If we're discussing what "difficulty" means to a player that's young and athletically capable of both positions, then data that expresses the result of athletic decline is what's not relevant.

IslandRed
02-25-2011, 01:17 PM
IslandRed,

I'm sorry but you're wrong. If we're discussing what "difficulty" means to a player that's young and athletically capable of both positions, then data that expresses the result of athletic decline is what's not relevant.

It might be what you're discussing, but it's not what the defensive spectrum discusses. My apologies if we're not talking about the same thing.

kpresidente
02-25-2011, 01:28 PM
Yeah, we're talking past each other. If you look at my original post, you can see I'm talking more about baseball skills and assuming the athleticism is there.


SS is more difficult than the hot corner? Not in my book. Catcher is the hardest position to play, 3B is next. You don't want to confuse "difficult" with "important". In the case of Votto, I'd say LF is easier than 1B, as long as you're not slow. No digging balls in the dirt, no screamers from the lefties.

Big Klu
02-25-2011, 04:46 PM
Which might be true, but it's also not that relevant. The defensive spectrum is not an academic argument about the difficulty of various positions. It's a pragmatic recognition of the size of the pool of available players at various positions (which affects the amount of offense that can be reasonably expected), and the history-of-baseball-long path of transitioning from a more difficult position to a less difficult one. Argue the difficulty of third base all you want -- and I agree, it is quite difficult to play well -- but over baseball history, lots of major-leaguers have moved from shortstop to third base, permanently or temporarily; they hardly ever move from third base to shortstop. The "why" isn't important in context, it just is.

The only ones I can think of off the top of my head are Cal Ripken and Hubie Brooks, and Ripken was only 21 at the time. (Brooks was a case of Les Expos jamming a square peg in a round hole--they wanted Brooks' bat in the lineup, but he couldn't displace Tim Wallach at 3B.)