Originally Posted by RosieRed
A lot of people seem to view Kearns as the odd man out on this team and propose trading him and keeping Dunn and Pena. For whatever reason, I've never been able to get on board with the Pena part. I get that Pena has all the power in the world, but that's all I see from him right now. I don't know, maybe I'm missing something. So many people think Pena has unlimited potential ... and maybe he does, and I'm totally wrong. I tend to think he has limited potential, and I think he is a liability in the field. I know Kearns has struggled, but I think he has much more of a chance of being a true complete player (cliche as it is) than Pena does.
I think just as many have advocated getting rid of Dunn or Pena. And still others have wanted to get rid of Jr. or Casey.
I think you're right about Pena. I also think what we see is what we're going to get from Pena. Ungodly power, great speed, a howitzer for an arm that is pretty accurate. However, his defense is atrocious. He can make the big play every once in a while though but his instincts are bad. It hasn't helped that the Reds didn't have a full time OF instructor on staff for the last year and a half. I just don't think he's really going to get that much better defensively. I don't think he's ever going to hit for a high average and he's going to strike out a bunch. If you accept him for that, you shouldn't have any problems with Pena.
A lot of Reds fans see Kearns as he was when he first came up and what he did 2 years ago before Ray King sat on him. Truly a 5 tool player with great plate discipline as well. Of course injuries have set him back. I don't think he's ever been a workout freak though. I remember listening to him on the radio during RedsFest after his first year and they asked him what he did during the offseason. He said that he basically played PlayStation. That isn't a big deal in and of itself but lately you have to wonder if that is all he does during the winter. He has gained weight the last couple of years. I would think some of it is muscle but some could be fat. Even if it is all muscle, is it necessary for him to be that big? He had power before he gained that weight. Then there are the attitude questions. Even before DanO got here he didn't react well to being sent down to the minors. Perhaps DanO hasn't exactly been his biggest backer but what has Kearns done since DanO has been here. To his credit, Kearns did give the 3rd base transition a go. That gives him major points attitude wise in my book. But he still hasn't produced this season. Even some of his biggest supporters has said he's out of shape and isn't the defensive player he once was. When he got regular playing time this year he hasn't produced. He didn't pull anything with power. That could be the aftereffects of the shoulder injury as Casey had a similar injury and he didn't pull anything with power till last season. He seems to have taken his latest demotion as well as could be expected and is hitting well in LOU.
I don't think it's necesarily a choice between Pena and Kearns. I think it's a judgement whether Kearns will once again be the player he was pre-Ray King or if he's going to be what he is now. That is a decision that a GM is paid well to make and it's a decision that his reputation is going to either be made or broken on.