Springfield's White finally gets to pitch for Reds
Veteran reliever fulfills goal, signs one-year deal
By Hal McCoy
Dayton Daily News
| In all his travels through eight major-league cities in the past 12 years, relief pitcher Rick White always wanted to do one thing before he quit picking up rosin bags — pitch for the Cincinnati Reds, the team he loved as a child.
White, 37, gets that chance this year. The Springfield native agreed to a one-year $600,000 contract Monday with the Reds, with $300,000 more available in performance incentives.
In each of the past two seasons, when he was a free agent, White made himself available to the Reds, but they weren't interested. So, he signed with Cleveland in 2004 and with Pittsburgh in 2005.
White is a 1987 graduate of Kenton Ridge, a high school that also produced major-league pitchers Dave Burba and Dustin Hermanson.
He grew up a Reds fan, going often to games at Riverfront Stadium, and he said as late as last year, "I've always dreamed of pitching for the Reds. They were my team growing up, and I'd like to pitch for them before I retire."
He was 4-7 with a 3.72 ERA in 75 appearances for the Pirates last year. In his 10 seasons pitching for Pittsburgh (twice), Tampa Bay, the New York Mets, Colorado, St. Louis, the Chicago White Sox, Houston and Cleveland, White is 37-52 with a 4.24 ERA in 520 appearances, all in relief.
Arbitration dates have been set for shortstop Felipe Lopez and first baseman Adam Dunn to determine how much richer the two Cincinnati Reds players will be. Even if they lose at their hearings, they win, because they'll receive large raises.
Lopez, who hit .291 with 23 homers and 85 RBIs and was the Reds' only All-Star last season, is scheduled to meet with a three-person arbitration board Feb. 8 at the Vinoy Hotel in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Lopez is asking for $3 million, and the Reds are offering $2.15 million.
Dunn, who hit .247 with 40 homers and 101 RBIs while playing 160 of the team's 162 games, is scheduled at the Vinoy for Feb.17. Dunn is asking for $8.95 million, and the team is offering $7.1 million.
Lopez, Dunn and the team can come to compromise figures between now and the hearings. But once the hearings are held, arbitrators must declare a winner, with no compromises on the numbers.
The Reds' arbitration team consists of interim general manager Brad Kullman, assistant general manager Dean Taylor, special assistant Dick Williams, coordinator of major league scouting Nick Krall and club attorneys Mark Rosenthal and Alex Tamin.
No new candidates
On the general manager front, there are no additional candidates to be interviewed on the immediate horizon. The team is concentrating this week on interviewing seven candidates: Minnesota's Wayne Krivsky, Philadelphia's Mike Arbuckle, St. Louis' John Mozeliak and in-house candidates Brad Kullman, Johnny Almaraz, Leland Maddox and Jim Beattie.