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Thread: The use or misuse of the pen

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    The use or misuse of the pen

    At this point in the season, for me there is one glaring issue for this team. I just don't care for the way the Reds use their bullpen. I have never liked this idea of "a" pitcher only able to get certain type of hitters out. IF you are not good enough to get out any ML hitter, then I really don't want you on my roster. Also if You are going to bring in a lefty to face a lefty lets say in inning 7, then why not agian if another lefty comes up in inning 8 or 9?

    I am baffled at how misused Marshall has been. I see no reason why he is unable to pitch to just lefties, I don't believe his numbers are that bad vs. righties. To see him come in pitch to one batter and leave drives me up the wall. Also, why must Broxton and Chapman be the 8/9 inning guys? IF your top hitters you are going to face are say hitting in the 8th, then why not bring chapman in then? We have a strong bullpen, I just am concerned we are not using it to it's fullest potential.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    What you're saying is all bullpens are misused. Every ML manager saves his closer for the 9th. Most managers designate a LOOGY. Most have set assignments they vary only they need a night off. I agree with everything you say but actually Dusty is managing the pen pretty much by the current "book". I can't wait til some manager has great success matching pitchers to situations rather than set roles. Then others will follow suit and a new "book" will be written that managers will slavishly follow.

    Dusty has a full pen of quality arms...luxury most teams don't have...and starters go deep...so at this point the pen actually suffers too little work but come August that fact will be a huge advantage as other teams pens burn out from the workload.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by RedlegJake View Post
    What you're saying is all bullpens are misused. Every ML manager saves his closer for the 9th. Most managers designate a LOOGY. Most have set assignments they vary only they need a night off. I agree with everything you say but actually Dusty is managing the pen pretty much by the current "book". I can't wait til some manager has great success matching pitchers to situations rather than set roles. Then others will follow suit and a new "book" will be written that managers will slavishly follow.
    Yes, I think it shows a complete lack of imagination and a lot of CYA by today's managers.

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    Beltway (05-22-2013)

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    I agree with everything stated....but I have also been saying this for about 10 years now and I have screamed it from every roof top.....not that the Reds or any other team is listening to me......but it all makes sense in what you said.

    another feather in the teams caps would be pitchers like Chapman will not get 30-40 saves a year and not be worth the multi year multi million dollar contract he will sign once he bides his time with the Reds....but thats also a knock against said team because agents will tell their star pen pitchers not to sign with that team because they wont add value to the pitchers resume......

    nothing will happen until one team decides to do and has great success with it....and I am not talking about winning 1 title...they will need to win multiple world series titles and then and only then will other teams look at trying it....there is nothing I hate more than losing the lead in the 7th or 8th innings when the meat of the opposing order is up and runners are on base with no outs.....thats when you bring in your studs.....

    now of course the downside is bringing in Chapman in the 8th inning and he gets us out of a jam and then Broxton blows a save in the 9th....people will eat Dusty up for that so I am not real sure there is a good answer but I would love to see some manager try it....I think it would not only work but i think it would work great

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by lidspinner View Post
    I agree with everything stated....but I have also been saying this for about 10 years now and I have screamed it from every roof top.....not that the Reds or any other team is listening to me......but it all makes sense in what you said.

    another feather in the teams caps would be pitchers like Chapman will not get 30-40 saves a year and not be worth the multi year multi million dollar contract he will sign once he bides his time with the Reds....but thats also a knock against said team because agents will tell their star pen pitchers not to sign with that team because they wont add value to the pitchers resume......

    nothing will happen until one team decides to do and has great success with it....and I am not talking about winning 1 title...they will need to win multiple world series titles and then and only then will other teams look at trying it....there is nothing I hate more than losing the lead in the 7th or 8th innings when the meat of the opposing order is up and runners are on base with no outs.....thats when you bring in your studs.....

    now of course the downside is bringing in Chapman in the 8th inning and he gets us out of a jam and then Broxton blows a save in the 9th....people will eat Dusty up for that so I am not real sure there is a good answer but I would love to see some manager try it....I think it would not only work but i think it would work great
    I am not a Broxton fan at all. I doubt there is anyone in baseball who pitches slower then he does, when he comes in, I change the channel I can't stand watching him pitch. I think overall not one of Walt's better moves. I would never ever consider Broxton for anything but mid inning mop up. Right now I would go with either Hoover or Sam to come in say in the 9th after chappy got the tough outs in the 8th.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by Goose View Post
    Yes, I think it shows a complete lack of imagination and a lot of CYA by today's managers.
    Agreed, the current "formula" is what is expected of managers, despite its wastefulness, and anyone who deviates from that formula leaves himself open to criticism. It's really just a mindless adherence to tradition.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    I wonder if any of this has to do with the power that is wielded by some of the big time agents. They like to go into contract negotiations with "x had 54 saves last year" and use that as a bargaining tool. If their guy is pitching in the 8th, they don't have the luxury. Also, if Chappy throws in the 8th, do you think his agent won't be on the phone with the Reds Brass screaming and yelling? The Reds have every right to hang up on him, but I still sometimes wonder.

    The NFL is probably the most popular spectator sport, but MLB players are still the best paid and have guaranteed contracts.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    As long as Dusty is the manager, this topic will pop up an infinite amount of times during the season.

    Dusty has no clue how to manage a bullpen.
    "I can't take this homerism anymore." - 10xWSChamps, August 11, 2010. A Cardinals fan having a problem with all the homerism on Redszone. Classic.

    "Man do I miss the days where were didn't need a calculator and an encyclopedia of baseball metrics to enjoy a baseball game ... - MikeS21" - 8/2/12 game thread

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    The Baker bashing is so weird, guys with zero baseball IQ telling a manager with the 17th most wins in baseball HISTORY how to run his team. This blasting is beyond belief, hilarious stuff. Is this a real website or the Onion?

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    Don Cameron (05-23-2013)

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by EMAW View Post
    The Baker bashing is so weird, guys with zero baseball IQ telling a manager with the 17th most wins in baseball HISTORY how to run his team. This blasting is beyond belief, hilarious stuff. Is this a real website or the Onion?
    And most interestingly 0 world series victories. I don't profess to know more about baseball than dusty. The dude has lived the game but some of his decisions leave others that have as well as myself stretching my head. Overall analysis. Great regular season manager. Can rack to the wins. Poor plsyoff manager and tactician.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Maybe it's a bit off topic here but I don't understand the line of thinking on RZ that bullpen pitchers namely the closer are not important. It seems that everything based on the closer argument is that so and so can get as many saves, when in the articles that people point to the save is shown as the flawed stat. How you you use a flawed stat to prove one player equal to another? I also don't get the line of thinking that since we aren't getting maximum value from chapman because he isn't a starter, which in itself is a major assumption, that we should trade him. Does anyone consider that maybe be has a greater value to this team as the closer than the player they'd bring in? Losing him would, IMO, ruin the back of the bullpen especially with dusty managing. Do we want ondrusek and Simon deciding games or chapman and broxton?

    I know the broxton contract was a bit of an overpay but you know what it playoffizes our BP from the word go. We have a shut down 7th 8th and 9th inning in a tight game. Given the quality of our starters a playoff game could be over after we score a run. That's huge. I think RZ completely underrated relievers. Average relievers are easy to replace, but great ones can be a deciding factor.
    Last edited by Old school 1983; 05-22-2013 at 11:14 PM.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by EMAW View Post
    The Baker bashing is so weird, guys with zero baseball IQ telling a manager with the 17th most wins in baseball HISTORY how to run his team. This blasting is beyond belief, hilarious stuff. Is this a real website or the Onion?
    It depends on what aspect of baseball you're claiming Dusty knows more about.

    Clearly any fan has more strategical knowledge than Dusty. As long as Cozart and Izturis continue to bat second, Dusty's knowledge of the game deserves to be questioned.
    "I can't take this homerism anymore." - 10xWSChamps, August 11, 2010. A Cardinals fan having a problem with all the homerism on Redszone. Classic.

    "Man do I miss the days where were didn't need a calculator and an encyclopedia of baseball metrics to enjoy a baseball game ... - MikeS21" - 8/2/12 game thread

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Dusty is a player's manager--and the player's have clear and defined roles and jobs. There is no confusion in what is expected from them.

    Dusty is comfortable with his position in baseball history, and I would dare say is loved and respected in his clubhouse and former clubhouses.

    He believes in his players, and sometimes to a fault. But in a game of failure--you need a manager like Baker.

    Don Cameron
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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    To the bullpen question. The aggregate bullpen is a huge factor. You have to have a good group of guys. The closer is overvalued because of the way they are handled. If the bedt was used in highly leveraged spots instead of only with a lead of 3 or less and only in the 9th...then they would have more value. Most good relievers can match the league's save percentage average. Except in years like Gagne once had almost all closers save games at near the average. Chapman is not better than that percentage wise. The odds of a team scoring in any single inning is not high. Any good reliever should be able to get the last 3 outs. Bullpens themselves are important but individual relievers are not. Its a weird dichotomy.

    I agree Baker is weakest as a manager in single games or series. But if players perform as expected that can limit the strategic role of the manager.

    I disagree defense is not good enough to be a good playoff team. As good or better defenders are available for defensive switches at most positions and even Choo and Frazier are not defensive liabilities. Frazier needs to pick up his hitting but he is an average 3b compared to the league. I'd call 3b neither a strength particularly nor a liability. Choo is playing better in CF as the season goes on.

    Winning the playoffs and series is NOT who is best but who gets hot at the right time. Let Walt work. Right now any trade for a solid RH bat is going to cost a lot more than deadline deal because almost every team still has a shot. The really bad teams have so many needs any good player they trade at this point will cost a King's ransom. Near the deadline they'll be more reasonable.

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    Re: The use or misuse of the pen

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Cameron View Post
    Dusty is a player's manager--and the player's have clear and defined roles and jobs. There is no confusion in what is expected from them.

    Dusty is comfortable with his position in baseball history, and I would dare say is loved and respected in his clubhouse and former clubhouses.

    He believes in his players, and sometimes to a fault. But in a game of failure--you need a manager like Baker.

    Don Cameron
    Quite simply, the world's sexiest man
    My issue with Baker is he is managing like this was the 70/80's. He can't think out of the box at all and try different things. Marshall is the lefty specialist and that is all. Chapman only pitches the 9th inning and if it's a save situation. To me with all the tools he has down in the pen, there is zero excuse for the pen to ever blow a game. There is way to much talent there for that to happen. Sure pitchers have bad games, but we have options that shouldn't be tied into set rules.


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