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View Full Version : Has Dusty cost us this season?



Redlegs
07-31-2011, 11:15 AM
Listening to Kevin Goldstein from Baseball Perspectives on Ken Broo's show this morning talk about how Dusty really does not like starting rookies or one year guys over veteran players.

Just wondering if this line of thinking has ultimately cost the Reds their season. Yonder Alonso continues to sit the bench which makes me wonder why in the world he was brought up from Louisville. It took them forever to call up Cozart when it looks like he's clearly the best option at the shortstop position. If Mesoraco is ready, why not get him up here and put him behind the dish?

I usually don't doubt the manager. I know Dusty Baker knows more about the game than I ever will. Just can't help but wonder why our young talent is not afforded the opportunity to play sooner than what they are.

Redlegs
07-31-2011, 11:37 AM
Maybe I should have titled this thread, "Has Walt cost us this season?". After all, he pulls the trigger on the roster moves. And he's the one who would ultimately allow Dusty's stubborness and reluctance to play the young guys eventually rule the day.

Always Red
07-31-2011, 11:41 AM
FWIW, Broo had Erardi on before Goldstein, and Erardi wondered aloud if Dusty and Walt are on the same page.

Ken Broo has the finest radio sports show in this city, hands down. He does a great job, and is far better on radio than he is on TV, where he is limited to the usual sounds bites.

BuckeyeRedleg
07-31-2011, 11:42 AM
While the NYM series was possibly the final nail in the coffin for 2011, I have to think the Milwaukee series (before the break) was devastating.

Cordero and Baker's decision to continually send him out there killed this team going forward.

Griffey012
07-31-2011, 11:51 AM
Listening to Kevin Goldstein from Baseball Perspectives on Ken Broo's show this morning talk about how Dusty really does not like starting rookies or one year guys over veteran players.

Just wondering if this line of thinking has ultimately cost the Reds their season. Yonder Alonso continues to sit the bench which makes me wonder why in the world he was brought up from Louisville. It took them forever to call up Cozart when it looks like he's clearly the best option at the shortstop position. If Mesoraco is ready, why not get him up here and put him behind the dish?

I usually don't doubt the manager. I know Dusty Baker knows more about the game than I ever will. Just can't help but wonder why our young talent is not afforded the opportunity to play sooner than what they are.

Well nearly everyone around here has been clamoring for Heisey to start in LF. It is finally happening. Not trying to call you out or anything but I just find it funny that Dusty is finally starting Heisey after he got ripped for quite a while for not starting Heisey, and now he is getting knocked on for starting Heisey and not starting Yonder.

Dusty can't play the guys if they are in the minors. And calling guys up are not his decisions. I am sure he has some say in them, but ultimately that comes down to Walt.

PuffyPig
07-31-2011, 11:55 AM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.

edabbs44
07-31-2011, 11:56 AM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.

Couldn't agree more.

Redlegs
07-31-2011, 11:57 AM
Well nearly everyone around here has been clamoring for Heisey to start in LF. It is finally happening. Not trying to call you out or anything but I just find it funny that Dusty is finally starting Heisey after he got ripped for quite a while for not starting Heisey, and now he is getting knocked on for starting Heisey and not starting Yonder.

Dusty can't play the guys if they are in the minors. And calling guys up are not his decisions. I am sure he has some say in them, but ultimately that comes down to Walt.I know where you're coming from, but Fred Lewis is also playing quite a bit. Alonso's a number one draft pick. I've seen him bat twice and both times he's ripped the ball. He's also made a nice play in LF. Time to trot him out there.

Ghosts of 1990
07-31-2011, 12:02 PM
Heard this from a long-standing ESPN employee back in 2008 who is close with Dusty. He said verbatim what you just said you heard on the podcast; that Dusty had more or less admitted he had his reasons for it.

That said, I do not just blame Dusty; although I think it's been one of his worst managerial jobs of his career. I blame a lot of the players. It's never been just one thing, it's always some aspect of the game that has been lacking and kept us from playing consistent baseball and Dusty has not been able to get them to respond. I also want to hear Walt's reasoning for not throwing this team some type of life-raft. Anything, something. I mean, how has he earned his paycheck?

westofyou
07-31-2011, 12:07 PM
I know where you're coming from, but Fred Lewis is also playing quite a bit. Alonso's a number one draft pick. I've seen him bat twice and both times he's ripped the ball. He's also made a nice play in LF. Time to trot him out there.

You mean the Fred Lewis with this line since the AS game?

.261/.414/.435/.849

He (much like Dusty) is not the blame for any of the Reds major maladies.

The reason for the Reds failings stand on the bump in the middle of the infield, where 10 guys have started a game for the team and 7 of them have an era above 4.68.

In short they stink, not the manager.

OldXOhio
07-31-2011, 12:08 PM
I know where you're coming from, but Fred Lewis is also playing quite a bit. Alonso's a number one draft pick. I've seen him bat twice and both times he's ripped the ball. He's also made a nice play in LF. Time to trot him out there.

Didn't Walt reason that YA was brought up bc he earned the promotion and it was time to see what he could do? Perhaps that time is post deadline.

BuckeyeRedleg
07-31-2011, 12:11 PM
If it's the GM's fault for lack of talent on the roster and the player's fault if there is talent and they under perform, when is it the manager's fault?

Never?

And if so, why are managers ever fired?

kaldaniels
07-31-2011, 12:12 PM
If it's the GM's fault for lack of talent on the roster and the player's fault if there is talent and they under perform, when is it the manager's fault?

Never?

And if so, why are managers ever fired?

Cause they are figureheads. Too much credit for the wins, too much blame for the losses.

OldXOhio
07-31-2011, 12:15 PM
You mean the Fred Lewis with this line since the AS game?

.261/.414/.435/.849



That's the one. Same guy who was hitting well before the YA call up as well. Why not give him the LF job against RH in the leadoff spot? And why bring up Alonso in light of Lewis' play and considering he would probably ride the pine?

I do blame Dusty for his handling of LF this year. It's been a continual revolving door.

CySeymour
07-31-2011, 12:19 PM
I know where you're coming from, but Fred Lewis is also playing quite a bit. Alonso's a number one draft pick. I've seen him bat twice and both times he's ripped the ball. He's also made a nice play in LF. Time to trot him out there.

I agree. Actually, giving Heisey playing time is defensible, so it's hard to knock him too hard for this. But no way Lewis should be getting playing time over Yonder. Look at it this way, Lewis is NOT going to get better. He is more likely to decline. Yonder is a rookie and a player the team as invested a lot of money in, so time to let him start seeing major league pitching.

oneupper
07-31-2011, 12:28 PM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.

I'd have to agree. But Dusty has not been helpful, IMHO. His "reality be damned" confidence-building style, which was probably a part (although I'm not convinced) of the 2010 success, has also been a part (of this I am more convinced) of this year's downfall.

So many tight losses means to me that managing the odds better could have led to a slightly better W-L at this point. But probably not enough to put the team in serious contention.

The players are who we thought they were. BUT not who we hoped they would be. The GM has to make that call, so that part is on Walt. In his defense, he did not have a lot to work with (money, flexibility and manager).

corkedbat
07-31-2011, 12:50 PM
This team has had pretty much the same holes since the start of the 2010 season and the resources to address them, but has remained stagnant.

There should have been several moves made over the winter to take a team that finally made the playoffs last year, improve it and build on the momentum. I saw little, if any indication during the offseason that the club saw the holes, much less felt any need to do so - they're now paying for that complacency. Scott Rolen's season 2011 was esily foreseeable and should ave been addressed - both interms of having better replacement optionsat 3B and - more improtantly - in the cleanup spot in the lineup.

I'd put it mostly on Walt. I'm not the biggest Dusty fan, but don't think he's the main reason. Dusty can't make trades and doesn't have final say on player movement. The mian problem with Dusty as things currently stand is - well, Dusty. When things started to uravel and it was apparent that there was something missing, Dusty's laidback personality and management style was not what the Doctor ordered.

Dusty is great with a team that is going well, has solid vets leading the way and just needs positive reinforcement, He's a real "player's manager." When things go all pear-shaped though, he's not quick enough to 1) recognize there is a problem and 2) move to address it. Pats on the back are nice, but sometimes a kick in the butt is required - not Dusty's strong suit.

I think that an earlier thread hit on the main issue when it was said somethng along the lines of this team hadn't really quit as much as gotten lost. A major casue of the loss of direction was Dusty's ability to steer the ship the way it was needed.

Dusty wasn't that instrumental in causing the problems - only exacerbating them.

nate
07-31-2011, 01:32 PM
I'm somewhat fascinated by the need to have a scapegoat.

I think the majority of parallel universe 2011 Reds teams are having a much better season than this one.

IslandRed
07-31-2011, 01:35 PM
FWIW, Broo had Erardi on before Goldstein, and Erardi wondered aloud if Dusty and Walt are on the same page.

I wonder about that myself sometimes. Something like: Jocketty is Castellini's guy... Baker is Castellini's guy... Baker is not Jocketty's guy.

If that's in fact a problem, it's obvious whose job it is to fix it.

corkedbat
07-31-2011, 01:48 PM
I'm somewhat fascinated by the need to have a scapegoat.

I think the majority of parallel universe 2011 Reds teams are having a much better season than this one.

Wonder if those anti-Reds had a crappy year last year? And if they were ever to meet their counterparts and shake hands, would they instantaneously annihilate each other? :D

Somebody call Michio!

GADawg
07-31-2011, 02:09 PM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.

no more callers please...we have a winner

mth123
07-31-2011, 02:40 PM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.

SO, besides Bruce and Arroyo, who did you expect more from and why? I think most guys are doing exactly as expected with Cueto, Hernandez, Cordero, Cairo and Leake preforming better than expected.

Its on Walt IMO.

Scrap Irony
07-31-2011, 02:41 PM
I'd have to agree. But Dusty has not been helpful, IMHO. His "reality be damned" confidence-building style, which was probably a part (although I'm not convinced) of the 2010 success, has also been a part (of this I am more convinced) of this year's downfall.

So many tight losses means to me that managing the odds better could have led to a slightly better W-L at this point. But probably not enough to put the team in serious contention.

The players are who we thought they were. BUT not who we hoped they would be. The GM has to make that call, so that part is on Walt. In his defense, he did not have a lot to work with (money, flexibility and manager).

I'd agree with most of this wholeheartedly. However, we have to also add in injuries/ ill health to key players (Bailey, Cueto, Rolen, Arroyo) as major components of the disappointing season thus far.

I don't know of many teams that could "lose" their top three starters for 50% of the season. Arroyo's loss of velocity for the entire year, Bailey's shoulder woes for three months, and Cueto's problems with getting loose for a month meant the sixth, seventh, and eighth starters were getting innings. It also burnt out relievers Ondrusek, Masset, and others a bit, meaning more problems with close games.

Add in static seasons from Stubbs, the catchers, Phillips, and LF, and the Reds still could have been in the mix if Bruce had become Votto and Votto had continued as the MVP. Instead, Votto dropped off and Bruce has done his best 2010 Jonny Gomes' impersonation.

Baker hasn't done as well this year in making moves either. His use of the pitching staff has been particular, IMO, damaging. (Arroyo, Leake, Wood, and Willis are all five or six-inning pitchers. They need someone warming up so that they're ready as soon as the aforementioned quartet get in trouble.)

Add it all up and the season's been a disappointment, certainly.

Scrap Irony
07-31-2011, 03:03 PM
SO, besides Bruce and Arroyo, who did you expect more from and why?

Pitching Staff
Volquez-- Has TOR stuff, but cannot throw strikes at the major league level. I expected a MOR season with some struggles but some gems. I got a AAA hurler.
Wood-- Last season, he was a MOR starter. This season he's a full run worse where almost everyone in baseball is pitching really well.
Masset-- I expected him to get better. His weird struggles for weeks at a time make me think all he'll ever be is good.
Bailey-- A TOR starter at best, a MOR guy most likely, he's been okay. When healthy. His health-- or lack thereof-- has really hurt the team.
Arroyo-- I know you mentioned him, but I don't know if you can understand how poor his season is. In a season where almost everyone in baseball has imoroved, he's been horrid. Eric Milton bad. Snd he's pitched every fifth day. His season alone is worth five game, IMO.

Hitters
Hanigan-- I really thought he'd be a 750-800 OPS guy. He's struggled to hit 700.
Rolen-- I'd be okay with a 750 OPS. I'd be okay with 2/3 of the season's games played. He's hit neither modest goal. As a cleanup hitter, his poor season has really killed the consistency of the lineup.
Stubbs-- I assumed he'd be smarter offensively. Instead, he's a throwback to the Lost Decade offense-- mashes bad pitches, K's when pitchers don't make mistakes. I don't think he'll ever be better than he was last season. Or this.
Bruce-- Again, I don't think you can judge just how poor his season has been. He's Gomes, circa 2010 without the internet bandwith and a better glove. He has to improve for this team to be good. It's that simple.

Ron Madden
07-31-2011, 03:11 PM
Let's wait until the end of the 2011 season to compare Bruce's 2011 to Gomes' 2010 season.

corkedbat
07-31-2011, 03:27 PM
Pitching Staff
Volquez-- Has TOR stuff, but cannot throw strikes at the major league level. I expected a MOR season with some struggles but some gems. I got a AAA hurler.
Wood-- Last season, he was a MOR starter. This season he's a full run worse where almost everyone in baseball is pitching really well.
Masset-- I expected him to get better. His weird struggles for weeks at a time make me think all he'll ever be is good.
Bailey-- A TOR starter at best, a MOR guy most likely, he's been okay. When healthy. His health-- or lack thereof-- has really hurt the team.
Arroyo-- I know you mentioned him, but I don't know if you can understand how poor his season is. In a season where almost everyone in baseball has imoroved, he's been horrid. Eric Milton bad. Snd he's pitched every fifth day. His season alone is worth five game, IMO. Hitters
Hanigan-- I really thought he'd be a 750-800 OPS guy. He's struggled to hit 700.
Rolen-- I'd be okay with a 750 OPS. I'd be okay with 2/3 of the season's games played. He's hit neither modest goal. As a cleanup hitter, his poor season has really killed the consistency of the lineup.
Stubbs-- I assumed he'd be smarter offensively. Instead, he's a throwback to the Lost Decade offense-- mashes bad pitches, K's when pitchers don't make mistakes. I don't think he'll ever be better than he was last season. Or this.
Bruce-- Again, I don't think you can judge just how poor his season has been. He's Gomes, circa 2010 without the internet bandwith and a better glove. He has to improve for this team to be good. It's that simple.

* Arroyo has been bad and may well have just "lost it," but I believe it was a huge mistake on the Reds part, by leaving Arizona with BA on the active roster. I gotta believe that 2 or 3 weeks of rest to rebuild his strength might have made a huge impact on his season. I still believe they should shelve him for a while now too.

* I have no problem with Rolen going into the season as a Red, but to go into the season counting on him for middle of the order production is nothing but inexcusable.

These two alone are on nobody's head but Jocketty's

Scrap Irony
07-31-2011, 03:47 PM
Arroyo's mono is Jocketty's fault? Who was going to replace Arroyo at the beginning of the year? Remember that both Cueto and Bailey were out indefinitely. Too, IIRC, Maloney had just gotten hurt as well, and Willis was a true unknown who also had problems with his hamstrong (again, IIRC). Arroyo had to pitch, as there was literally no one else to do it.

And, if you hadn't noticed, Miguel Cairo has done a phenomenal job spelling Rolen at third base. That's the very definition of hedgingyour team's bets (though hardly anyone on this board liked the deal at the time).

The guy Jocketty was counting on to make the offense better was Bruce. So far, he's been horrid, outstanding, and horrid again. That, IMO, is what you can lay at Jocketty's feet, if anything. (Well, that and the shortstop problem.)

mth123
07-31-2011, 04:07 PM
Pitching Staff
Volquez-- Has TOR stuff, but cannot throw strikes at the major league level. I expected a MOR season with some struggles but some gems. I got a AAA hurler.
Wood-- Last season, he was a MOR starter. This season he's a full run worse where almost everyone in baseball is pitching really well.
Masset-- I expected him to get better. His weird struggles for weeks at a time make me think all he'll ever be is good.
Bailey-- A TOR starter at best, a MOR guy most likely, he's been okay. When healthy. His health-- or lack thereof-- has really hurt the team.
Arroyo-- I know you mentioned him, but I don't know if you can understand how poor his season is. In a season where almost everyone in baseball has imoroved, he's been horrid. Eric Milton bad. Snd he's pitched every fifth day. His season alone is worth five game, IMO.

Hitters
Hanigan-- I really thought he'd be a 750-800 OPS guy. He's struggled to hit 700.
Rolen-- I'd be okay with a 750 OPS. I'd be okay with 2/3 of the season's games played. He's hit neither modest goal. As a cleanup hitter, his poor season has really killed the consistency of the lineup.
Stubbs-- I assumed he'd be smarter offensively. Instead, he's a throwback to the Lost Decade offense-- mashes bad pitches, K's when pitchers don't make mistakes. I don't think he'll ever be better than he was last season. Or this.
Bruce-- Again, I don't think you can judge just how poor his season has been. He's Gomes, circa 2010 without the internet bandwith and a better glove. He has to improve for this team to be good. It's that simple.

One by one:

Volquez was way less than 2 years removed from TJ at the start of the season. Its usually 24 to 30 months before they start to get effectiveness back. He should have been viewed as a question mark instead the Reds made him the opening day starter and had him figured as the de facto number 1. Big organizational error. That is not underperforming as much as unrealistic expectations in the GM chair IMO.

Wood was pretty good for 100 major league innings in 2010 and I had high hopes myself, but high hopes and counting on him as a piece for the middle of the rotation are two different things.

Bailey spent nearly 90 days on the DL in 2010 with shoulder injuries. My expectations were more shoulder problems (and still are BTW). I do think he's a decent arm when he's healthy.

In general, the approach to the rotation was foolish on the Reds part. They had 4 question marks (Leake is the other) to fill 3 spots. Expecting positive answers from 3 out of 4 was crazy. The Reds needed to deal off one of these guys in a package for more certainty, if not TOR help.

Masset is 29 and is a decent arm for the pen. I don't get expecting him to improve much. I expected him to be about the same and he has been.

Agree on Arroyo. No way to see the Mono or back issues coming, but we should have expected some drop in performance.

Hanigan I might agree, but he's been offset by better than to be expected production from Hernandez. Overall, the catcher spot hasn't fallen off that much.

Rolen has a degenerative shoulder condition that he himself has said robs him of his power and his days as a big power producer are gone. I agree that I didn't see a drop to sub .700, but I did see a drop coming and the need to get a lefty hitting alternative to give him more rest, keep the pain down and the swing more effective. The approach to 3B was a huge failing IMO.

Stubbs I had figured for about the same as 2010. He's had a power drop, but the Reds had him figured as the lead-off guy and his Batting Average and OBP are about the same as 2010. He has had a power drop, so I'd say he's underperfromed a little.

Bruce. I agree, he has not been the .900 OPS monster that the team needed. IMO the team put too much pressure on him by not bringing in more help. He's pressing a lot of the time and I wonder if he would if another mid-order bat was in the line-up. I'm guessing we would see better from Bruce if another offensive player was in the line-up.

Most of these failings were foreseeable. It was poor planning by the team not to bring in more production elsewhere. It was obvious that the team needed at least one starter who offered more certainty, another bat for the middle of the order and a plan for Rolen to rest a lot in between DL stints. Its all on the GM IMO.

corkedbat
07-31-2011, 04:13 PM
Arroyo's mono is Jocketty's fault? Who was going to replace Arroyo at the beginning of the year? Remember that both Cueto and Bailey were out indefinitely. Too, IIRC, Maloney had just gotten hurt as well, and Willis was a true unknown who also had problems with his hamstrong (again, IIRC). Arroyo had to pitch, as there was literally no one else to do it.

And, if you hadn't noticed, Miguel Cairo has done a phenomenal job spelling Rolen at third base. That's the very definition of hedgingyour team's bets (though hardly anyone on this board liked the deal at the time).

The guy Jocketty was counting on to make the offense better was Bruce. So far, he's been horrid, outstanding, and horrid again. That, IMO, is what you can lay at Jocketty's feet, if anything. (Well, that and the shortstop problem.)

* It's Walt's fault that Arroyo wasn't DL'd. I don't care if you start Matt Klinker for two or three starts. And even if he rolled the dice at the start of the seaon, once he saw how BA was going it shoulda done. Maybe two weeks rest would not help him regain his strength and work things out, but it shoulda been tried.
* And while we're on wha'ts Walt's fault - he is most definitely responsible for Arroyo's extension which was stupid for a team like the Reds - not only in terms of money, but throwing a roadblock in the way of a roadblock for better pitchers
* I said I had no problem with Rolen still being around. Love Miguel, he's done a greatjob, but that is nowhere near the point here. The Reds should have in no way come into this season penciling Rolen into the cleanup spot or expecting cleanup type production. A bonafide LF who could produce runs should have been acquired to hit between Votto and Bruce. Then if you somehow get cleanup-like production from Rolen (or even Cairo) from the sixth or seventh hole - Great the Reds would really be sitting pretty!

Jay Bruce's spottiness at times is unfortunate
Scott Rolen's struggles at the plate and especially physically - was blatantly obvious.

I repeat. Penciling Rolen in as your cleanup hitter and doing nothing to try and address the situation was inexcusable - malpractice on Walt's part.

MikeS21
07-31-2011, 04:18 PM
I'd blame the players, they are the ones who have generally underperformed.

You could have re-arranged the deck chairs on the Titantic, but most people still got wet.

For whatever reason, lots of players haven't performed to their expected level. Add in a healthy does of bad luck, and you have our season.
Right here is what cost the season.

Folks want to blame the FO for not bringing in Cozart. Of course many of the same folks were wondering last year why Janish never got a start. And for all the folks wanting Heisey to play, I remember last year a stretch where we wanted to see him DFA because he couldn't hit. Who knew Arryo was going to report to spring training with mono? Who knew that Volquez's control problems would crash? Who knew Jay Bruce would forget to show up except during the month of May? Who knew Vott's SLG would dip so far below his career norm?

And blame Dusty for Cordero? Up until that Brewers series, Cordero had been lights out all year. He has been pretty much lights out since.

None of this is on Dusty ... or Walt.

dfs
07-31-2011, 04:32 PM
Just wondering if this line of thinking has ultimately cost the Reds their season. Yonder Alonso continues to sit the bench which makes me wonder why in the world he was brought up from Louisville. It took them forever to call up Cozart when it looks like he's clearly the best option at the shortstop position. If Mesoraco is ready, why not get him up here and put him behind the dish?

Do you really think those decisions have "cost the reds the season?" or are you just looking for a scapegoat?

Alonso was brought up as a left handed bat off the bench and as a spot starter in the outfield, because he was the outfielder left on the 40 man roster who could fill that role.

Cozart was brought up after it was apparent to EVERYBODY that Paul Janish was not going to be an everyday major league shortstop. After last years success I think we all hoped to see Paul succeed. He had 270 plate appearances to sink or swim this year and he sank. I don't think this decision was made in a hasty way.

You bring up Mesaroco...who sits? Your veteran latin catcher that is OPS+ing 135 or the 30 year old you just signed to a long term contract who frankly seems to be a joy to pitch to?

You want to blame Dusty for sticking with his starters too long? or leaving Cordero in too long? Ok....I'll buy those. The mismanagement of the pitching staff is no where near as criminal as it was under Jerry Narron, but that's a real complaint.

You can blame Dusty for farting around with too many lineups and such, but given the talent that he has, I think that's a reasonable approach.

In all seriousness, no, I don't think you can blame Dusty Baker for this year's tailspin.

Look at the starting pitching. That was supposed to be such a strength of this team coming into the year. Mike Leake, he seems to be the big winner. Leake and Cueto are the only two starting pitchers that I really think have taken a step forward this year. Volquez has imploded. Arroyo and Wood have not gotten it done. Homer....I swear you can see Homer start to pitch scared. Someday he may go 18-6 for somebody, but it seems a ways off.

None of that's on Baker. Honestly, that's not on the defense. That's just starting pitching.

Redlegs
07-31-2011, 09:49 PM
Do you really think those decisions have "cost the reds the season?" or are you just looking for a scapegoat?
I think changes could have been made earlier to allow the Reds to be in a better position than they are today. It remains to be seen if it has cost us the season or not. Certain things are not in his control such as Volquez underperforming. Other things most certainly can be. Not looking for a scapegoat. Just pondering.


Alonso was brought up as a left handed bat off the bench and as a spot starter in the outfield, because he was the outfielder left on the 40 man roster who could fill that role. No reason for Alonso not to have a start thus far. He has far more potential to help this team now and in the future than a journeyman like Fred Lewis. Lewis' current numbers not withstanding.


Cozart was brought up after it was apparent to EVERYBODY that Paul Janish was not going to be an everyday major league shortstop. After last years success I think we all hoped to see Paul succeed. He had 270 plate appearances to sink or swim this year and he sank. I don't think this decision was made in a hasty way. Definately not in a hasty way. In fact, Cozart was called up about a month later than he should have been, IMO. The kid gives the Reds half a chance at the plate. I was pulling for Janish too. But he proved once again he's not an everyday ss in the big leagues. Not to mention his defense started to slip. He couldn't afford that to happen. The Reds stuck with him too long.


You bring up Mesaroco...who sits? Your veteran latin catcher that is OPS+ing 135 or the 30 year old you just signed to a long term contract who frankly seems to be a joy to pitch to?I think Hernandez has plenty of trade value right now. If the Reds think Mesoraco is ready, they should have moved Hernandez and made room for Devin.


You want to blame Dusty for sticking with his starters too long? or leaving Cordero in too long? Ok....I'll buy those. The mismanagement of the pitching staff is no where near as criminal as it was under Jerry Narron, but that's a real complaint.

You can blame Dusty for farting around with too many lineups and such, but given the talent that he has, I think that's a reasonable approach.

In all seriousness, no, I don't think you can blame Dusty Baker for this year's tailspin.

Look at the starting pitching. That was supposed to be such a strength of this team coming into the year. Mike Leake, he seems to be the big winner. Leake and Cueto are the only two starting pitchers that I really think have taken a step forward this year. Volquez has imploded. Arroyo and Wood have not gotten it done. Homer....I swear you can see Homer start to pitch scared. Someday he may go 18-6 for somebody, but it seems a ways off.

None of that's on Baker. Honestly, that's not on the defense. That's just starting pitching.Points taken. And again, I know Dusty's knows more baseball than me. Sometimes he just frustrates the hell out of me with his loyalty to veterans. It's admirable to a point. But he goes overboard sometimes. Not looking for a scapegoat, as you say. There's no one reason for a baseball season falling short of expectations. Hell, they may even still win the thing. One thing's for sure; I'll keep watching and keep cheering them on.

AtomicDumpling
07-31-2011, 10:05 PM
In the end the blame for a disappointing season lies with both Dusty and Jocketty. They received lots of credit when the team overachieved last year. It works both ways. Those two guys are responsible for assembling a good team and getting the most out of it. They failed this year.

nate
07-31-2011, 10:09 PM
Wonder if those anti-Reds had a crappy year last year? And if they were ever to meet their counterparts and shake hands, would they instantaneously annihilate each other? :D

Somebody call Michio!

Well if one believe in infinite parallel universes, the answer is always "yes."

There's even probably one or two parallel universes where Dusty doesn't bat the SS second!

Maybe...

:cool:

AtomicDumpling
07-31-2011, 10:12 PM
Well if one believe in infinite parallel universes, the answer is always "yes."

There's even probably one or two parallel universes where Dusty doesn't bat the SS second!

Maybe...

:cool:

That is outside the realm of possibility even in Bizarro world.

nate
07-31-2011, 10:13 PM
That is outside the realm of possibility even in Bizarro world.

I can live with 1/~.

Orenda
07-31-2011, 10:28 PM
Players haven't performed so I wouldn't put all the blame on him but the guy still drives me crazy. I mean is it really that hard to manage a baseball team? We debate if players are overpaid all the time yet we don't talk about the money they give Dusty. I don't think the reds really need to be throwing millions of dollars at a manager when there are plenty of guys who would be thrilled to manage for a lot less.

It can't be that hard, lets see if I got this right:
weak slap hitters hit 2nd so that they can make productive outs in front of the middle of the order guys.

speaking of middle of the order, never put two left handed hitters back to back, it's better to have an inefficient lineup for 6 or 7 innings than it is to be made look silly late in the game. Also, don't worry about right handed hitters, if there is a tough righty on the mound, you can go righty 12 lefty 3 righty 4 lefty 5 and then righty 6789, then back to 12, that's 6 righties in a row and nobody thinks twice about how illogical it all is.

Platoon's are over-rated, it's better to be loyal to players than it is to put a good lineup out there.

Lastly and most important, always fear the unknown and if all else fails go with the guy that has been here the longest.

oneupper
07-31-2011, 10:47 PM
Players haven't performed so I wouldn't put all the blame on him but the guy still drives me crazy. I mean is it really that hard to manage a baseball team? We debate if players are overpaid all the time yet we don't talk about the money they give Dusty. I don't think the reds really need to be throwing millions of dollars at a manager when there are plenty of guys who would be thrilled to manage for a lot less.

It can't be that hard, lets see if I got this right:
weak slap hitters hit 2nd so that they can make productive outs in front of the middle of the order guys.

speaking of middle of the order, never put two left handed hitters back to back, it's better to have an inefficient lineup for 6 or 7 innings than it is to be made look silly late in the game. Also, don't worry about right handed hitters, if there is a tough righty on the mound, you can go righty 12 lefty 3 righty 4 lefty 5 and then righty 6789, then back to 12, that's 6 righties in a row and nobody thinks twice about how illogical it all is.

Platoon's are over-rated, it's better to be loyal to players than it is to put a good lineup out there.

Lastly and most important, always fear the unknown and if all else fails go with the guy that has been here the longest.

It's a lot harder than that...big time. You only referred to the lineup.
There's the pitching:

You forgot:

Your bullpen consists of
1. Closer. Can only use in save situations or if he hasn't worked in a week.
If a non-save situation becomes a save situation, use immediately.

2. Set-up man. Eighth inning, if ahead.

3. Loogy. Pitches only to left-handed batters and only to one.

4. Everyday man. Use in all other situations until arm falls off.

5-7 Everyone else. Use when 1-4 aren't enough or have no arms.

Starting pitchers:

1. All SP must complete 7 innings, if ahead, unless they lose the lead in the seventh, in which case they might be pulled. If they are pitching a shutout, make it nine or until the shutout is no longer.

2. All SP must go to bat even in critical game situations, unless condition one is completed. They may be relieved shortly after.

3. All pitching changes should be accompanied by double switches, regardless of how it affects the team on the field.

4. All SP's must bunt when men are on base, even if they are good hitters and the sacrifice does little or nothing to improve the chances of scoring.


I'm out. Someone want to continue with the running game?

dman
07-31-2011, 11:58 PM
I'm going to chime in and say yes to Dusty costing the Reds this season. It's just one small sampling, but has been indicative of him the whole season, but I'll point to the game with Atlanta on the night of 7/22. The Reds had fought and scrapped hard all evening long, and IMO, could've had that game in the bag. I was at that game, and thought for sure that after Fred Lewis and Drew Stubbs went back to back, I'd see a pinch hitter for Bronson Arroyo. That would be a big negative on that happening, as we all know what happened. Bronson comes out and ATL ties it up. Then, Dusty takes Chapman out too early in that same game, IMO, and brings in Masset and he gave up that bomb to Dan Uggla, and that game was history.

Combine that with the countless times that he's either brought Cordero in to pitch when there other options available, or left Cordero in way beyond the point of no return, only to take him out when it's way too late.

Yes, Dusty bears a good 90-95% of the burden, IMO for how this season has turned out because of his inept managerial moves and decisions. The rest can be attributed to player slumps/under-performance.

edabbs44
08-01-2011, 08:03 AM
I'm going to chime in and say yes to Dusty costing the Reds this season. It's just one small sampling, but has been indicative of him the whole season, but I'll point to the game with Atlanta on the night of 7/22. The Reds had fought and scrapped hard all evening long, and IMO, could've had that game in the bag. I was at that game, and thought for sure that after Fred Lewis and Drew Stubbs went back to back, I'd see a pinch hitter for Bronson Arroyo. That would be a big negative on that happening, as we all know what happened. Bronson comes out and ATL ties it up. Then, Dusty takes Chapman out too early in that same game, IMO, and brings in Masset and he gave up that bomb to Dan Uggla, and that game was history.

Combine that with the countless times that he's either brought Cordero in to pitch when there other options available, or left Cordero in way beyond the point of no return, only to take him out when it's way too late.

Yes, Dusty bears a good 90-95% of the burden, IMO for how this season has turned out because of his inept managerial moves and decisions. The rest can be attributed to player slumps/under-performance.

I havent disagreed with a post this much in along time.

puca
08-01-2011, 08:54 AM
Frankly a lot of things broke right for the Reds last year. They won more than their fair share of late-and-close games, and they did it with a young team. A team that most (even around here) thought if kept in tact would only improve. Key young players did not improve, Rolen got hurt, Arroyo contracted mono and the late game heroics have been less frequent. If there is blame to be assessed for the miscalculation, it is on Walt not Dusty.

I don't like how Dusty uses Coco. He rides him too hard when the Reds are winning and it is always sink or swim - there is no backup plan. But, that is how ALL managers use their closers these days, especially ones that are as 'established' as Coco. Dusty could be a maverick and go against the grain, but it's hard to fault Dusty for behaving like the rest of his ilk.

Cozart should have been promoted earlier, but that wasn't (or shouldn't have been) Dusty's call. Walt is the GM. He is the one that sets the roster. On the plus-side he did consistently choose Janish over Renteria until soft-J proved he couldn't hit major league pitching. Most on RZ were on board with that.

While I cringe everytime Dusty sends his starting pitchers out for the 7th inning because none of our pitchers seem comfortable pitching that late into the game. On the other hand a pitching staff will not hold up if none of the starters consistently do. Again if there is blame to be handed out it has to go to Walt for not getting a horse or two for this rotation.

Could they do better than Dusty for game day managing? Certainly. Is Dusty the main reason this team has failed this year? Hardly.

Always Red
08-01-2011, 09:01 AM
Has Dusty been pitching for the Reds this year?

If so, then yes, this season is his fault.

MikeS21
08-01-2011, 10:56 AM
Has Dusty been pitching for the Reds this year?

If so, then yes, this season is his fault.
Has Dusty been hitting for the Reds this year? If so, then this season is REALLY his fault.

dfs
08-01-2011, 11:33 AM
I know Dusty's knows more baseball than me. Sometimes he just frustrates the hell out of me with his loyalty to veterans. It's admirable to a point. But he goes overboard sometimes. Not looking for a scapegoat, as you say. There's no one reason for a baseball season falling short of expectations. Hell, they may even still win the thing. One thing's for sure; I'll keep watching and keep cheering them on.

I'll be right there beside you watching and cheering.

You know the story when Baker came on board was that he wouldn't play young players and he would kill any arms that we had as starting pitchers. He hasn't butchered arms (at least yet) and lets take a look at the loyalty to veterans.....

Zach Cozart sat and waited.....for Paul Janish to play his way out of a job. Nobody thinks Janish is or was an established player. From a "win this season" point of view, we can scream that Baker stuck with Janish too long, but from an organizational point of view...it was just right. Nobody thinks that Paul Janish is going to be a regular major league shortstop. That question is answered.

Which of the multi-headed beasts in left field is considered the veteran? Probably Gomes and after the first couple of months, I don't think anybody would argue that Gomes was being used too much. (You could argue that he didn't belong on the roster, but that's not really Dusty's call)

You can't really argue that Miguel Cairo has received too much playing time. Francisco just got hurt at the wrong time and Cairo has played well.

As good as he looks when he's on, Drew Stubbs can look absolutely horrible at times, but Dusty is letting Stubbs figure things out.

I suppose you could go out on a limb and say that Ramon is playing too much and Hannigan should be getting more playing time, but the response is that Ramon is hitting and splitting time at catcher just makes sense.

As opposed to conventional wisdom I think Dusty should be getting praised for using the young players as much as he has.

When he left Chicago, that team had pretty much spiraled out of control and Baker didn't do anything to reign the team in. He just rode it as they fell out of the sky and into the ground. I think that's the danger with Baker, that through inaction he'll lose the team. I don't see that yet. I didn't even see that last week when they got swept by the mets.

Always Red
08-01-2011, 11:47 AM
Has Dusty been hitting for the Reds this year? If so, then this season is REALLY his fault.

Dusty probably could still hit better than some of the LF'ers he has run out there this year.

2nd in the NL in runs scored, 11th in the NL in runs given up. That's why this team is so very average.

signalhome
08-01-2011, 01:52 PM
Dusty probably could still hit better than some of the LF'ers he has run out there this year.

2nd in the NL in runs scored, 11th in the NL in runs given up. That's why this team is so very average.

The Reds have actually gotten really good production out of LF this year. Reds LFs are 10th in the ML in wOBA and 9th in WAR. I've got my fair share of problems with Dusty, and though it feels like LF has been a black hole of offensive production, that simply isn't the case, so it's hard to put much fault on Dusty there. You could make the argument that the production out of LF would be even better had he platooned Lewis and Gomes to start the year -- and you'd probably be right -- but if we're looking for reasons as to why the Reds have under-performed so far, LF isn't the place we should be talking about.

Always Red
08-01-2011, 02:00 PM
The Reds have actually gotten really good production out of LF this year. Reds LFs are 10th in the ML in wOBA and 9th in WAR. I've got my fair share of problems with Dusty, and though it feels like LF has been a black hole of offensive production, that simply isn't the case, so it's hard to put much fault on Dusty there. You could make the argument that the production out of LF would be even better had he platooned Lewis and Gomes to start the year -- and you'd probably be right -- but if we're looking for reasons as to why the Reds have under-performed so far, LF isn't the place we should be talking about.

I'm not blaming LF, or any of the offense.

I am blaming the pitching. please see above.

Lewis has started to hit well, Heisey runs hot and cold (cold now), and Gomes was heating up before he got traded. Like others, I'd love to see what Alonso could do, and if he really is that bad in the OF. While Dusty is still trying to win the division, I think he'll continue to play the vet Lewis over Alonso.

I was being a bit facetious by stating that Dusty could probably still hit better than all of them. Except maybe Alonso! BTW, I know Lewis' defensive stats look OK, but to my own eye (and I'm just a fan) Jonny Gomes looked better out there than Lewis does. Though Fred did make a nice throw to the plate the other night.

Strikes Out Looking
08-01-2011, 02:06 PM
I am blaming the fact that the Reds have been shut down by a journey man pitcher named Charlie Morton 3 times thus far this year. If they had won those three games they are at the very least in second or third place -- 3 1/2 games back. The fact that they couldn't hit that guy is the crux of the season, IMO.

fearofpopvol1
08-01-2011, 02:15 PM
You mean the Fred Lewis with this line since the AS game?

.261/.414/.435/.849

He (much like Dusty) is not the blame for any of the Reds major maladies.

The reason for the Reds failings stand on the bump in the middle of the infield, where 10 guys have started a game for the team and 7 of them have an era above 4.68.

In short they stink, not the manager.

The manager always gets the blame when things go wrong. That's how it's always been.

I don't think Dusty is the reason for the woes of this team, but I do think his stubbornness sometimes gets the best of him and this team.

jmcclain19
08-01-2011, 05:00 PM
When he left Chicago, that team had pretty much spiraled out of contention and Baker didn't do anything to reign the team in. He just rode it as they fell out of the sky and into the ground. I think that's the danger with Baker, that through inaction he'll lose the team. I don't see that yet. I didn't even see that last week when they got swept by the mets.

I strongly agree with this point and it's one of my biggest issues with Baker. As the boat is sinking, instead of plugging the leaks, he is walking around shaking hands telling the men what a pleasure it has been to serve with them.

westofyou
08-01-2011, 06:08 PM
The manager always gets the blame when things go wrong. That's how it's always been.

I don't think Dusty is the reason for the woes of this team, but I do think his stubbornness sometimes gets the best of him and this team.

They are hired to be fired, that is the truth.

Actually the genesis of a club usually goes through several stages when it comes to managers.

Dusty is a motivator and a guy with a soft touch, one that lends comfort to most situations. Despite his rep he's a good guy for young guys and a good guy for vets, in short he's a steady hand

Guys like that are generally brought in to guide a younger team, often they lack the "chops" to be known as big game string pullers, and that can bite them in the arse.

IF the squad is not full of guys that need a screamer to take them to the next level then the steady hand guy usually gives way eventually to a strategy guy, one who is supposed to take the coddled (but taught!!) guys over the hill. Dusty is not known as a dugout wizard, and thus any prolonged journey that continues to fall short will ensure that aspect of his managerial style will be exploited in an attempt find the string puller that gives the team that advantage. the key is to find a guy who also can stroke some egos and coddle some talent at the same time. Dusty might deserve some of the heat for this team, but the guys throwing the balls are more to blame in the grand scheme of things.

Kc61
08-02-2011, 12:48 AM
Some odd decisions tonight in loss to Astros.

Rested pen, he turns to Ondrusek who has struggled lately.

Gives up the game in the tenth.

Lots of bunts too, too many I think.

Guacarock
08-02-2011, 01:32 AM
Reds now sporting a 6-12 record this season in Monday night games. The team batting average on Monday nights is a collective .230, the OBP .299, the OPS .652. This compares with slashes of .274/.359/.773 on Saturdays and .284/.355/.835 on Sundays.

Seems like the batters gear up on weekends, then routinely collapse come Monday. There's also a Monday letdown by the pitchers, although not as pronounced as the positional players.

Statistical noise? Perhaps. Although it is odd that so many guys can't crack the Mendoza line on Mondays, among them, Rolen, Cairo, Hernandez and Hanigan. One wonders if there's an underlying cause -- fatigue or poor conditioning, perhaps a little too much weekend revelry, trouble rebounding after flights, lineup experimentation, laid-back coaching, whatever.

I don't profess to know the answer, but severe splits of this nature bear closer analysis in trying to figure out what's wrong with a team that performs as erratically as the 2011 Reds. There's a lot of talent on this team, but it's not a team seemingly destined to achieve up to its potential. Before next season, we need to sort out whether the dysfunction lies with inconsistent management or with players who just aren't capable of delivering on an everyday basis.

paulrichjr
08-02-2011, 01:42 AM
Reds now sporting a 6-12 record this season in Monday night games. The team batting average on Monday nights is a collective .230, the OBP .299, the OPS .652. This compares with slashes of .274/.359/.773 on Saturdays and .284/.355/.835 on Sundays.

Seems like the batters gear up on weekends, then routinely collapse come Monday. There's also a Monday letdown by the pitchers, although not as pronounced as the positional players.

Statistical noise? Perhaps. Although it is odd that so many guys can't crack the Mendoza line on Mondays, among them, Rolen, Cairo, Hernandez and Hanigan. One wonders if there's an underlying cause -- fatigue or poor conditioning, perhaps a little too much weekend revelry, trouble rebounding after flights, lineup experimentation, laid-back coaching, whatever.

I don't profess to know the answer, but severe splits of this nature bear closer analysis in trying to figure out what's wrong with a team that performs as erratically as the 2011 Reds. There's a lot of talent on this team, but it's not a team seemingly destined to achieve up to its potential. Before next season, we need to sort out whether the dysfunction lies with inconsistent management or with players who just aren't capable of delivering on an everyday basis.

Without looking. I would say it's because Arroyo starts every Monday. :D

WVRedsFan
08-02-2011, 01:54 AM
WOY's post was classic and so true. If we had won 10 or even 6 more games, he would be a genius, but the team is at fault, not the manager. His decision to bring in Ondrusek is criminal, but so was Logan's performance. When you play on hunches, you are either a hero or a goat.

Guacarock
08-02-2011, 02:48 AM
They are hired to be fired, that is the truth.

Actually the genesis of a club usually goes through several stages when it comes to managers.

Dusty is a motivator and a guy with a soft touch, one that lends comfort to most situations. Despite his rep he's a good guy for young guys and a good guy for vets, in short he's a steady hand

Guys like that are generally brought in to guide a younger team, often they lack the "chops" to be known as big game string pullers, and that can bite them in the arse.

IF the squad is not full of guys that need a screamer to take them to the next level then the steady hand guy usually gives way eventually to a strategy guy, one who is supposed to take the coddled (but taught!!) guys over the hill. Dusty is not known as a dugout wizard, and thus any prolonged journey that continues to fall short will ensure that aspect of his managerial style will be exploited in an attempt find the string puller that gives the team that advantage. the key is to find a guy who also can stroke some egos and coddle some talent at the same time. Dusty might deserve some of the heat for this team, but the guys throwing the balls are more to blame in the grand scheme of things.

Fair analysis, but for $3 million plus a season, Dusty needs to conjure up a little more dugout wizardry to go along with his soft touch. I'm not sure we need a screamer to take us to the next level, but Dusty's been around long enough now that he doesn't need to approach the job like he's auditioning to be Sally Field's understudy. A better role model for him to emulate might be Sparky Anderson, who knew a thing or two about baseball strategy and team-building, including how to weave young players into a winning mix.