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Thread: Platoon in LF for 2014?

  1. #16
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by RedlegJake View Post
    ac084c is right on the salary issue. Ladeda, you're right that it should not be an issue but we are talking about real management, owners and money. Maybe for us, sitting here having a BB discussion it shouldn't be an issue and is a sunk cost but across baseball, how many guys making Ludwick's money are platooned or sit regularly? There are a few but darn few. When a guy making that much ends up on the bench it almost always prefaces a trade. Owners want to see their bigger investments out on the diamond. As mth123 points out, Lud is rested already on a frequent basis, even when healthy so there is an opportunity for a guy who can hit RH pitching to get some ABs. It doesn't rise to the level of a platoon, though.

    We are just going to have to agree to disagree on this topic. My answer is probably going to be incredibly long.

    First, I have to agree that yes-- all things equal, owners probably want to see the guys making the bigger money playing on a regular basis. Add yes, if he's benched- then they would prefer to trade him. (See Ethier or Kemp)

    Can we agree that the Reds have close to zero money available to spend this offseason?

    Can we agree that Ludwick's contract is excessive for someone of his production?

    Can we agree that Ludwick is 35 years old and will turn 36 in July? And his best days are most likely behind him?

    Can we agree that LF is an option the Reds should consider upgrading with a short term solution until hopefully Ervin is ready in 18 months to 24 months?


    If the Reds can find a better option than Ludwick @ LF that doesn't break the bank, it's something the Reds need to seriously need to look at. If that means finding someone who replaces him or platoons with him- it's something to look @.

    Part of the job of the manager is to put the best players on the team on the field @ the same time regardless of players salaries. Can we kind of agree on this point? Sort of? (Heck, it's not like Ludwick is a Star like Votto or Bruce-- he's just an expensive average player)

    Unfortunately for the Reds, they are full of 4th OF's for the LF spot. (Heisey, Schumacher etc.) The Reds currently do not have a LF on the roster who is better than Ludwick. I think we can all agree to this point. Ludwick is currently the best option the Reds have in LF.

    Cheap Reds options in the farm system are 2 years away. Winker and Ervin should be starting in AA next year. Lutz in AAA, and it's not like his AA #'s were that great. He's not a future starting OF anyway IMO.

    If the Reds want an upgrade in LF, they will have to find one currently not on their roster or in their farm system.

    Going back to the question of players who make alot of money who are benched. For example, what happens next year in LA, when Crawford, Kemp, Ethier and Puig are all healthy? Puig isn't getting benched, so that means 1 of Ethier, Crawford and Kemp are starting the season on the bench. Right now, possibly Ethier and his his $17mm contract. all 3 of those guys have massive contracts.

    Would there be a revolt in LA if Ethier started over Puig? Yes there would. It's not a perfect example for the Reds, because the Reds don't have a Puig that would slot into LF to replace Ludwick. So salary doesn't necessarily equate to starting if you have a viable backup. In this case, Puig for the Dodgers.

    Yes, the Dodgers would like to trade Ethier (or Kemp) but their contracts are massive. $71mm over 4 years left for Ethier-- and Kemp-- $128mm through 6 years and he has shoulder and ankle issues.

    The Dodgers are finding it hard to trade Ethier who is younger and better than Ludwick. You right-- expensive players on the bench are usually prime candidates to get traded.

    Which gets me back to one of my previous statements that Ludwick's contract is untradeable. I think the Reds know he is overpaid, but they really can't move him even though they would LOVE to. I don't know who would pay that much money for that little production and trade a player for it.


    I have no idea where I'm really going with this, since it's late and I need to sleep.

    I haven't sufficiently articulated my point, that just because Ludwick is making alot of money doesn't mean that the Reds shouldn't look @ that position as a possible position to try and upgrade. They really should-- even Ludwick's best years weren't that good. He's likely to be piss poor this season. (Watch him bat .260 and hit 30 HR's now) OK, piss poor is harsh, but lets say he is somewhere between .5 and 1.1 WaR. That's not that great. If I can find a $3mm option or less who will hit better than him- i'm taking it every day of the freaking week.

    The Manager wants to win-- if he doesn't win, he's getting canned. If Ludwick is batting .212 with 4 hr's @ the end of May, don't you think the manager will be looking for a replacement? salary be damned. Skip really isn't a good option in LF for a handful of games because he really isn't that much better vs RHP compared to LHP and he has no pop.

    My original point of looking @ Schierholtz is because he's an upgrade over Ludwick vs RHP. He will make about $4mm next year which is about all the Reds can afford if even that.

    He had 409 AB's vs RHP last year, and hit 20 HR's. He slugged .499 and he's an ok right fielder defensively. Ludwick was -6.8 UZR/150 in 2012, and -23.5 in 2013.

    Schierholtz UZR/150 was 2.5 and -1.1 in 2012 and 2013. Schierholtz is better defensively than Ludwick and can also play RF. (For the few rare games when maybe Bruce gets moved to CF when BHam needs a day off)

    I know Ludwick is making money, but if the Reds can add someone who will hit better than him vs RHP and also play better Defense while not costing an arm and a leg, shouldn't it be something the Reds are looking @?

    I'm sure there are probably better, cheaper options than Schierholtz. Just someone who is a monster vs RHP and isn't stonehenge in LF defensively.

    We will have to agree to disagree-- but I firmly feel if the Reds can't find a solid fulltime LF to replace Ludwick (which they can't because they are broke and Winker/ERvin are not ready) Then the Reds need to look into finding a LH batter with extreme splits favoring his production vs RHP and who is also cheap- the Reds should look into it as a means to upgrade their hitting for 2014.


    Heck, when the Reds have zero money to spend, you need to get creative trying to improve production on the field. If it means taking advantage of matchups, do it to it.

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  4. #17
    Grouch ac084c's Avatar
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Didn't the Reds (along with every other MLB team) just get 25MM in TV Money? Did they spend that on Choo? Did they spend that on any significant FA?

    They have money to spend still. Is their top priority LF - where they're already paying a guy 10MM in hopes he'll be healthy again?

    For your arguments sake, let's say they are. It would be irresponsible for them, should they sign an OF to displace Ludwick for them not to trade Ludwick as well.

  5. #18
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by ac084c View Post
    Didn't the Reds (along with every other MLB team) just get 25MM in TV Money? Did they spend that on Choo? Did they spend that on any significant FA?

    They have money to spend still. Is their top priority LF - where they're already paying a guy 10MM in hopes he'll be healthy again?

    For your arguments sake, let's say they are. It would be irresponsible for them, should they sign an OF to displace Ludwick for them not to trade Ludwick as well.
    They spent it last year when they increased the payroll by 20 Million from 2012. They borrowed from it by backloading raises and buy-outs for Ludwick, Hannahan, Broxton and Latos. I'd guess the Reds could add $5 to$10 Million, but nothing like signing Drew or Cruz or dealing for Kemp or Ethier can happen unless some payroll is unloaded. These scenarios that increase the payroll by 30% from 2013 are more unrealistic than saying they'll ride Zach Cozart's .950 OPS to the title.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  6. #19
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by ac084c View Post
    Didn't the Reds (along with every other MLB team) just get 25MM in TV Money? Did they spend that on Choo? Did they spend that on any significant FA?

    They have money to spend still. Is their top priority LF - where they're already paying a guy 10MM in hopes he'll be healthy again?

    For your arguments sake, let's say they are. It would be irresponsible for them, should they sign an OF to displace Ludwick for them not to trade Ludwick as well.
    I'm pretty sure that $25 million was just the average. Some teams got more (larger markets) and some got less. I haven't seen how much the Reds received, or anyone else.

  7. #20
    Grouch ac084c's Avatar
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by LewGra View Post
    I'm pretty sure that $25 million was just the average. Some teams got more (larger markets) and some got less. I haven't seen how much the Reds received, or anyone else.
    Where the previous contract paid teams an average of $25.53 million each per year, next year’s contract will pay teams an average of $51.67 million per year. Having an additional $26 million on hand seems useful.

    MLB’s collective bargaining agreement, however, stipulates that teams share 34% of their local TV money. The shared pool is then split evenly among all thirty teams.


    http://www.awfulannouncing.com/2013/...v-dollars.html

  8. #21
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Since the Reds have talked to Grady Sizemore, what do you guys think of a Platoon in LF with Ludwick and Sizemore? It could be something to try out. As long as we get Sizemore at a low price I'm all for signing him.

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  10. #22
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    If healthy and ready, G Sizemore would be a great addition to the Reds. He could split time in LF and CF. Hamilton could learn from him. A bench of:

    Heisey
    B Pena
    Hannahan
    Schumaker
    G Sizemore

    would look pretty good. Hamilton or Hannahan could play SS on the days Cozart needed off.

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  12. #23
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    If Sizemore hits enough, then fine. I have no interest in a defensive type platooning in LF for this team. LF isn't hard to play, especially here, and our offense needs all the hitters it can get.

  13. #24
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Good thread. I like a lot of the suggestions made here. This is now the teams most pressing need. Betting on Ludwick to do anything above average would be a grand mistake. Minimize his at bats vs. righties, keep him fresh with a solid platoon lefty hitter and this outfield looks much, much improved. Problem is, who's available?

    I like the Sizemore idea but he's more of a wildcard than I would prefer - I could see him going to a team like LAA who is set at all three OF positions but could use a lefty 5th outfielder later in the season. Joyce projects to get plenty of time between the OF and DH in Tampa - that is unless they trade Price for another young outfielder. Then he could become available. Venable looks even less attainable from a Padres team that could make a sleeper WC run - factor in his flexibility at all three OF positions and 2 years of control and you'd think they would want something to help their big league team, which the Reds don't have unless you want to start talking Bailey or Leake. Shierholtz is a nice idea but once you crunch the numbers he'd be a minor upgrade, at best, over Heisey.

    Joyce and Venable are two good targets; one would cost a solid B+ prospect, the other much more. But this teams needs another OF guy, preferable one with pop vs. RHP, and not just for this year. Keep at it, Walt.

  14. #25
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Would anyone take a flier on Tyler Colvin? He played pretty well his rookie year for the cubs, but has been out with a string of injuries. A minor league deal and invite to ST wouldnt hurt. And what happened with James McDonald with the Pirates? A few years ago he was thought pretty highly of within their organization as far as potential to be in the top of the rotation. Neither will make or break a team, but both were thought pretty highly of just 2-3 years ago

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  16. #26
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Seattle just DFAd Carlos Peguero. He's a LH bat with lots of power who can't hit against LHP, but does well against RHP. Big dude who can run OK and play corner OF. Better use of a roster spot than Logan Ondrusek or Nick Christiani. Power is hard to find these days and a move from Seattle to GABP may be a revelation. If the Reds could pawn off Ondrusek in the process of acquiring him, it could be a double win for the team.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

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  18. #27
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    How would Lucas Duda work in that spot. .342 career on base, got some power, asked for 1.9 mil in arbitration. Still just 27 years old.

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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hollcat View Post
    How would Lucas Duda work in that spot. .342 career on base, got some power, asked for 1.9 mil in arbitration. Still just 27 years old.
    Pretty well. Very good numbers against RHP last season. Good to the point where the Mets will probably be wanting a pretty good player in return, and that is what could be the problem.

    But who knows, if he doesn't win a job in ST he might be available.

  20. #29
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Walt just said on radio today we are out on Grady Sizemore...so on to the next option.

  21. #30
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    Re: Platoon in LF for 2014?

    Quote Originally Posted by Redsville View Post
    Walt just said on radio today we are out on Grady Sizemore...so on to the next option.
    Disappointing. I wonder if he has a better offer, or isn't as healthy as walt first thought? Either way I guess I'm happy walt is exercising on the side of caution with Sizemore. No need to sign him just to make a move.


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