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Thread: Offseason Grade

  1. #1
    Member Wishbone C's Avatar
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    Offseason Grade

    Well now that what many of us thought would happen actually did happen (Bailey extension) time to take a look at what Walt did this offseason and give him a grade.

    The pertinent info:

    - We lost Choo and we will without question miss his OBP. But the contract he got from Texas would have proven to be more of an overall detriment than his OBP skills could have offset over the long haul. I believe the call to let him walk in order to extend Bailey (& I also believe Latos eventually) was an overall plus.

    - The Skip deal strikes me as solid if unspectacular. It has the air of being one of those moves you look back on at the end of the season and say "that was a key under the radar type move."

    - The Brayan deal also seems like one of those moves that lacks in the WOW department but could be key as well. He's insurance in case Meso struggles against RHP. That's not insignificant.

    - We got good value back for Hannigan. I do believe it was time to move him and let Meso have his shot. So the timing of the move was..well...timely.

    - Locking up Bailey to a long term deal that is favorable is key. We now have him under club control to use for the full length of the contract or to trade for other assets in the future if need be. Either way the important part is he isn't going to walk with nothing to show for it but a comp pick. That's huge.

    With all that said I give Walt a rock solid B+.

    What say you?

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  3. #2
    Member Wishbone C's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    BTW the logical question becomes: What would it have taken for Walt to get an A+?

    In my mind, to find a way to retain Choo under terms that wouldn't be a long term detriment to the club (admittedly next to impossible in the free agent market). And bring a big middle of the order bat, corner outfielder type under favorable terms (think Cory Hart). As well as extend Bailey, trade Hannigan for good value etc.

    A tall order if not impossible no doubt. But we're talking about an A+ so I feel the requirements should be demanding.
    Last edited by Wishbone C; 02-19-2014 at 03:26 PM.

  4. #3
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    I think you have to break the grade down into two parts.....

    Off season grade based on 2014 Season

    Off season grade based on 2014 and into the future

    When broken out, I think Walt gets a C maybe C- on a grade based solely on the 2014 Season. When you look into the future the grade gets much better. Getting Bailey at what I consider a "Fair" rate, and not being tempted to pay Choo more than he likely will produce is a huge win for Walt. The Hanigan trade extracted good value I believe as well. I think Holmberg closes the gap on our bottom heavy farm system a bit. Walt has extended the window for the Reds with these deals. I'd give Walt a B, B+ when considering how this offseason has set up the Reds going into the future.

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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Its tough to put a letter grade to this offseason, as most of the issues with it are a lack of activity. Had the Reds been able to bring in a better backup plan to Hamilton and a platoon player for Ludwick I would give it an A. Walt tried in Sizemore but was unable to seal the deal.

    As far as what I like though...
    -The Homer Bailey deal. Gives the Reds a good rotation past this season, and creates flexibility in terms of signing the guys whos contracts are up after 2015. Also creates the possibility of dealing a SP to fill a void in the lineup.
    -The Hanigan trade. We got a solid pitching prospect, plus it was time to see what Mesoraco can do with everyday at bats.
    -SP depth. They didn't bring in any big names, but they are much better equipped to deal with injuries in the rotation than they were a season ago. A combination of young guys with upside and vets who may be on their last legs, but still could fill in for a short time.
    -Im also happy we didn't see a big move just for the sake of a big move. I thought for sure BP would be gone, but the Reds didn't get value for him so I give them credit for not moving him...or anyone else for that matter.

  6. #5
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    D-.
    "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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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Solid B. Locking Bailey up was big.

    I've mentioned this before, but I almost feel like we don't know where the biggest hole is yet. Can Frazier have a bounce back year or has the league figured him out? Does Ludwick have anything left in the tank? Is Billy ready for the bigs? Can Mesoraco be a solid #6 or 7 hitter with the comfort of being the every day C?

    Once Walt gets the answers to these questions, he can hopefully go out and get the right bat at the right position sometime before the AS break.

    My gut feeling is that Hamilton, Mesoraco and Cozart hit a bit more than people are expecting but that Ludwick struggles and we have to look for an everyday LF.

    If you are going to knock Walt, I think you have to look back at his moves prior to last season with Broxton, Phillips and Ludwick. Those deserve a D or F and those are what put us in a financial bind now. Not anything he did this offseason.

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    Wishbone C (02-22-2014)

  9. #7
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Quote Originally Posted by Drugs Delaney View Post
    Solid B. Locking Bailey up was big.

    I've mentioned this before, but I almost feel like we don't know where the biggest hole is yet. Can Frazier have a bounce back year or has the league figured him out? Does Ludwick have anything left in the tank? Is Billy ready for the bigs? Can Mesoraco be a solid #6 or 7 hitter with the comfort of being the every day C?

    Once Walt gets the answers to these questions, he can hopefully go out and get the right bat at the right position sometime before the AS break.

    My gut feeling is that Hamilton, Mesoraco and Cozart hit a bit more than people are expecting but that Ludwick struggles and we have to look for an everyday LF.

    If you are going to knock Walt, I think you have to look back at his moves prior to last season with Broxton, Phillips and Ludwick. Those deserve a D or F and those are what put us in a financial bind now. Not anything he did this offseason.
    He gets a D- precisely for going into the season without knowing so many answers. You get a good grade by answering questions. A poor grade stems from leaving them unanswered and hoping. They seem locked in with Phillips, Frazier and Ludwick (all huge questions IMO), that means they should have pursued more certainty behind the plate, CF and SS. Forcing more uncertainty seems the exact opposite of the right plan IMO.
    "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

  10. #8
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    C-.

    Locking up Bailey is what any decent GM would have done.

    The Hannigan trade was a good one.

    Skip was a good pick up.

    I like giving Billy a chance, but left field wasn't addressed yet again. We have 3 guys we can depend on in Votto, Bruce, and Phillips. The other 5 everyday players we have no idea about. We just speculate and hope the pitching carries us.
    ...and this one belongs to the Reds.

  11. #9
    Member RedsBrick's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    I thought Walt deserved an A+ for the Choo pick up last year, but it didn't really pan out.

    Tough to say on these kinds of things until they play the games.

    Part of my point surrounds Hamilton. What if he competes for Rookie of the Year? Then Walt should be given an A+ for not finding someone in the off-season to start instead of him. On the other hand, what if he totally tanks? Then I guess the opposite applies.

    IMO, Walt deserves a B or higher for changing managers.

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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    He gets a D- precisely for going into the season without knowing so many answers. You get a good grade by answering questions. A poor grade stems from leaving them unanswered and hoping. They seem locked in with Phillips, Frazier and Ludwick (all huge questions IMO), that means they should have pursued more certainty behind the plate, CF and SS. Forcing more uncertainty seems the exact opposite of the right plan IMO.
    I can't disagree with your logic here, but I do struggle with holding that against Walt. As a team a year ago that was second tier we were all waiting for the big change to push the Reds into that first tier. Without that move it is tough to call the offseason a success.

    As much as I would have loved to see an 800 OPS bat added to the lineup, where do you find one? And if you do does that mean no Homer Bailey signing? Trade Robert Stephenson? Give up a draft pick for another wild card in Nelson Cruz? Without me having a good answer to that I cannot hold it against Walt. If anything I am happy he did not overspend on a marginal 3B/LF upgrade that leaves the team hurting money wise.

    Now if you want to look at some of walts moves from past years I give him a worse grade. The Broxton deal, Phillips deal, etc. did handicap the Reds a bit this offseason, and that is on Walt. Judging just by November until now I think he has done a good job of getting some under the radar guys in here who can help the team. And if the Reds feel that this lineup can improve with what they have, and put the money toward pitching I'm ok with that. Time will tell if its the correct decision.

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    Drugs Delaney (02-23-2014)

  14. #11
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    I'd say Walt deserves a grade in the C+ to B- range.

    Losing Choo was inevitable. Seeing the Reds pop up in possible trades with the Yankees for Gardner and a shot-in-the dark signing of Sizemore added an element of intrigue, but I never really saw either as a real possibility. It seems rumors like this happen all the time, so I don't see a reason to get too optimistic when they inevitably come up.

    I like the Hanigan trade (Holmberg is a very solid depth/future signing). I thought giving Price the manager job was a good decision. Schumaker will add a much needed element off the bench. Signing Bailey to an extension when almost NOBODY thought it to be possible is what saves the offseason for me.

    In the end, I hold the view that the offseason could have been much worse.

  15. #12
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    B+

    (I knew there was no chance we were keeping Choo and I was pessimistic about a LTC for Bailey ... which helps raise my grade considerably.)

  16. #13
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Quote Originally Posted by No pants Mcgee View Post
    I can't disagree with your logic here, but I do struggle with holding that against Walt. As a team a year ago that was second tier we were all waiting for the big change to push the Reds into that first tier. Without that move it is tough to call the offseason a success.

    As much as I would have loved to see an 800 OPS bat added to the lineup, where do you find one? And if you do does that mean no Homer Bailey signing? Trade Robert Stephenson? Give up a draft pick for another wild card in Nelson Cruz? Without me having a good answer to that I cannot hold it against Walt. If anything I am happy he did not overspend on a marginal 3B/LF upgrade that leaves the team hurting money wise.

    Now if you want to look at some of walts moves from past years I give him a worse grade. The Broxton deal, Phillips deal, etc. did handicap the Reds a bit this offseason, and that is on Walt. Judging just by November until now I think he has done a good job of getting some under the radar guys in here who can help the team. And if the Reds feel that this lineup can improve with what they have, and put the money toward pitching I'm ok with that. Time will tell if its the correct decision.
    A better platoon partner for Mesoraco would have made that position an offensive force (Salty, AJ, even Navarro affordable and available). Mes is toast against RHP so far. Just about any LH bat that is a decent part time hitter against RHP who could have platooned with Ludwick or Frazier would have made experimenting with Billy more acceptable. Eric Chavez and Kelly Johnson were two that come to mind. No bank breakers needed, but solidifying moves. Instead we get a guy who should be insurance at AAA as the second catcher and Skippy who serves as a UI but can't play SS or 3B.

    I'd raise the grade a half a letter if they have the guts to jettison Hannahan at the end of spring.
    "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

  17. #14
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    If Walt doesn't get an F or a D for this off-season, then there is no such thing as a D or F in grading.

    The Reds got worse, got older, got more expensive.

    Their best move was locking up a talented .500 career pitcher to a huge contract that could hamper a mid-market franchise. Not exactly something to get excited about.

    They lost Choo, one of the only two hitters they could count on to do the most important thing in baseball - not make outs at the plate. His replacement won't be close. He could steal 140 bases and he wouldn't replicate Choo's production.

    I'd give Walt a D+ with the possibility of moving to a C+ if the Bailey contract works out and the possibility of moving to an F- if the Bailey contract doesn't.

    On that note - Walt needs to learn how to lock up players before their 5th and 6th seasons.

    The Reds are paying two players Votto and Bailey more than double what they should, because Walt has no clue what he is doing.

  18. #15
    There's no Walt only Zuul villain612's Avatar
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    Re: Offseason Grade

    Quote Originally Posted by Kilgore_Trout View Post
    I'd say Walt deserves a grade in the C+ to B- range.

    Losing Choo was inevitable. Seeing the Reds pop up in possible trades with the Yankees for Gardner and a shot-in-the dark signing of Sizemore added an element of intrigue, but I never really saw either as a real possibility. It seems rumors like this happen all the time, so I don't see a reason to get too optimistic when they inevitably come up.

    I like the Hanigan trade (Holmberg is a very solid depth/future signing). I thought giving Price the manager job was a good decision. Schumaker will add a much needed element off the bench. Signing Bailey to an extension when almost NOBODY thought it to be possible is what saves the offseason for me.

    In the end, I hold the view that the offseason could have been much worse.


    This.

    I honestly don't see what deals were out there that Walt could have pulled off without getting hosed. Should we have traded Bailey for Gardner? No.

    I too was disappointed by the lack of moves but at the end of the day, I think Walt played his cards smartly and didn't do a bad deal just for the sake of doing a deal.

    Signing Homer Bailey longterm > Signing Choo longterm (at that price)
    "The key to winning baseball games is pitching, fundamentals, and three run homers."


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