Re: Dexter Fowler
The more I think about it, the more I lean towards doing this trade. Fowler immediately fixes lead-off for us, and assuming Billy Hamilton is what we hope he is, I think he'll also excel as a #2 hitter in 2014 and 2015. [He's just reaching his peak years, and has a big frame that might develop a bit more power. He could/should put up 15-20 HR in GABP. Hitting directly in front of Votto will only help him to see better pitches than he ever has in the past, too.]
Giving up Bailey is basically an "all-in" bet on Chapman moving into the rotation without any complications, and doing it while retaining electric/top-of-rotation stuff. In my mind, somehow there's a lot more need for Chapman to be uber-productive if he's replacing Bailey than if he were replacing Leake. It's probably just all in my head, and a matter of flawed perception... but this really is the stumbling block for me when it comes to moving Homer.
I think Fowler brings enough to the table for me to overcome that mental block. I roll it around in my brain, and basically here's what I figure: we sign Ludwick for 2-3 years, and we still have Stubbs. Taking everybody's splits into account, it's Ludwick in LF and Fowler in CF against RHP, and Fowler in LF and Stubbs in CF against LHP. This has the added benefit of keepign Ludwick fresh by sitting him once or twice a week (he did seem to wear down from time to time last year). If we sign Rolen on the cheap, and he gets a start or two per week, that frees up Frazier to make a spot start or two in the OF (maybe giving Bruce a night off against LHP, or providing more rest for Ludwick). And then you consider who's on the bench on any given night, and suddenly, Miguel F. Cairo isn't your #1 option as a pinch hitter, since you'll always have at least one genuinely dangerous option (Rolen, Stubbs, Ludwick) available at all times.
Once/if Hamilton arrives as an everyday CF, Stubbs is expendable, and Ludwick probably becomes a professional pinch hitter and our no-brainer DH in interleague situations, and that's not an entirely bad thing, either.
So yeah, I can definitely talk myself into doing Homer-for-Fowler, straight up....
EDIT TO ADD: Another thing worth considering is how much fun it would be to have a different "The Trade" to argue about for years. Assessing who won and who lost the trade would be a roller coaster ride of wackiness, with little to no agreement. I mean, for starters, all Fowler has to do is not be Stubbs, and many may consider that a victory in and of itself... on the other hand, if Homer tanks at Coors, others may point to park effects and opine that he would have stayed a very good pitcher if the Reds hadn't traded him. Smell the fun!!!
Last edited by FlightRick; 12-02-2012 at 09:11 PM.