Since many think the season is over and others like me are bored waiting for the game on a Holiday. I thought I would try to get some opinions on next year's team. I have categorized the players based on how I see it. Obviously, the guys in the Back for Sure and Others I keep categories are "touchable" in the right deal (but can't really predict deals). The Trade Bait guys are guys who should be shopped or used as sweetener in deals involving others. Just trying to spur some discussion.
Back For Sure (14)
Adam Dunn, Edwin Encarnacion, Aaron Harang, Brandon Phillips (at SS), Ryan Freel (as a Roving 80% of the time player), Bronson Arroyo, Scott Hatteberg (Just signed), Eric Milton (Stuck with him), Ken Griffey Jr (Stuck with him but in RF
), Javier Valentin (Just signed), Bill Bray (Trade Justification), Gary Majewski (Trade Justification), Rheal Cormier (probably Stuck), Todd Coffey
Others I'd Keep (5)
Rich Aurilia (at a reasonable price as a roving 80% of the time player), Kyle Lohse (at 80% of current pay), David Weathers (on a deal same as this year), Brendon Harris, Brian Shackelford (cheap loogy)
David Ross (sell High), Jason Larue (Payflex), Matt Belisle, Jason Standridge, Elizardo Ramirez, Chris Denorfia (blasphemy I know), William Bergolla
Kent Mercker, Juan Castro, Royce Clayton, Todd Hollandsworth, Scott Schoenweiss ( I like him but we are stuck with lots of lefties and can use the money elsewhere), Ryan Franklin, Paul Wilson, Chris Michalek, Joe Mays, Eddie Guardado
Injury Comebacks to Gamble With
Grant Balfour, Brandon Claussen
Contributers from the Minors
Rey Olmedo (In Castro's role), Homer Bailey (at mid-season), Joey Votto (at Mid-season), Probably one or more of several relievers that I don't know enough about (Shafer, Coutlangus, Medlock, etc).
I see a need at Starting Pitcher, Closer, CF (who has power, range and plays good defense) and maybe catcher but probably either Larue or Ross will be back. Although both Milton and Griffey are on bad contracts, I wouldn't just give them away for payflex (I would Larue). Even with the flaws they have, it would cost a lot to replace Griffey and even Milton.
Hatteberg and Aurilia are keepers while in contention and if they are playing well. Otherwise they move to the bench or could be traded with their roles going to Votto and Harris.
With the money going out and the new TV deal, there should be some money available to add some impact players. CF and Closer are probably more realistic than a starter who is an improvement and who will be worth the money.