Originally Posted by REDREAD
Right now the pen is Weathers, Bray, Codero, Burton, Lincoln, Rhodes. Am I forgeting someone?
There's an open spot in the fifth slot in the rotation for a kid. If a bullpen kid really earns a spot in spring training, they can carry 12 pitchers. It's not as if the bench is packed with talent on the position player front. Someone like Rhodes or Lincoln is very tradable at the deadline if the Reds suddenly find themselves with a young bullpen kid knocking down the door.
I guess my point is that there's no reason to rush up Roenicke and the other kids. Another half season of AAA isn't going to kill them, even if they are ready.
If the Reds didn't sign Lincoln (or a vet like him), then they are forced to either go with a kid (ready or not) or they will have to scramble for an arm in spring training, which probably leads to another Josh Fogg.
Very seldom does a team make it through an entire season without someone in the bullpen going on the DL as well.
The point is that the kids really aren't blocked. They aren't going to get a job handed to them, but there's wiggle room to add a kid that is ready. That is a great position to be in. The kids aren't forced to be rushed.
I would be very surprised if the last bullpen spot didn't go to Masset, Owings, or Ramirez. The Reds have limited money, and they need to maximize the cheap assets they have so money is saved to spend elsewhere.
And I'm not just calling for youth for the sake of youth - IMO Roenicke and Herrera are both pretty clearly ready for the bigs. They were dominant in AAA. Heck, Josh Roenicke turns 27 in August. Herrera is 24. I'm not asking for them to be rushed - they are ready. And deploying them correctly could have saved the team a significant amount of cash to use on upgrades elsewhere.