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Thread: Grade the offseason.

  1. #166
    Member SteelSD's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD
    I agree that Ortiz is somewhat of a wildcard at this point. Was his last season's debacle as a starter the start of a trend, or will he be happy/more relaxed/confident if he knows he has a starting job nailed all season as a Red?
    Well, considering Ortiz' 5.20 ERA from 2003, and it appears that 2004 was the continuation of a trend, not the start of one.

    Cory Lidle improved dramatically in Philly. He was not really an option for us to sign this winter, as apparently Philly wanted him bad (Why would he want to come back to Cincy to be trade bait again?) I don't remember anyone criticizing the Lidle deal at the time. Anyhow, while I know you are trying to compare 2005 and 2004, it seems fair to give Lidle's performance as a Red.
    Those two shutouts he pitched in Philly didn't contribute to the Reds' 2004 W-L, and we really didn't have the option of bringing Lidle back.
    In essense, Milton doesn't replace Lidle of 4.9 ERA. He replaces Lidle of 5.23 ERA or he replaces Claussen (if you're looking at the 2005 pool).
    I think it's a bit wacky to include Milton's ERA from all his starts for Philly, but then just leave off Lidle's starts for Philly. The full season numbers are what Lidle and Milton did against MLB hitters.

    And don't think for a second that I want Lidle back considering that I didn't really want him in a Reds uniform to begin with.
    "The problem with strikeouts isn't that they hurt your team, it's that they hurt your feelings..." --Rob Neyer

    "The single most important thing for a hitter is to get a good pitch to hit. A good hitter can hit a pitch that’s over the plate three times better than a great hitter with a ball in a tough spot.”
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  3. #167
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelSD
    Well, considering Ortiz' 5.20 ERA from 2003, and it appears that 2004 was the continuation of a trend, not the start of one.
    I agree that the people that didn't like the Ortiz signing may be completely right. He might bomb. I like the risk-reward though. It only costs us 4 million and a marginal prospect. No long term commitment, but if he's ok, we can bring him back in 2006. I think he's asking for 4 million in arb (not sure). So, even if he wins his arb case, I see it as paying about 1.2 million more than Lidle cost us last year, but controlling that extra year is nice. Lidle was one year and gone, regardless of how he pitched.

    I see where you are coming from in your comparisons. Too bad we couldn't do the tweak that the Philly coach did that appeared to work on Lidle.

    In any event, I'd rather have an Ortiz (or even Lidle) over an overmatched youngster. Although I acknowledge that Ortiz has some serious downside as well.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

    Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!

  4. #168
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    B

    The Reds are better with Milton than without him.
    The same goes for Randa. And Mercker. And Weathers. And Aurilia (with Machado injured). Maybe Weber as well.

    The market for free agent starting pitchers was thin. Especially concerning left handers. Matt Clement & Kevin Millwood didn't want to join the Reds. So who was actually left for the Reds to make a run at? You know what you will get with Milton and I'm convinced that he can be traded if the need arises without a problem.

  5. #169
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Also, if you're going to do the math on what Milton replaces from the 2004 Reds then you've got to figure in Lidle and the guy who replaced Lidle (Luke Hudson). Together they posted a 4.60 ERA in 197.1 IP.

    Hudson, who may or may not be a mirage, replaces the #5 starters (Claussen/Van Poppel/Haynes).
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

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  6. #170
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by SteelSD
    Or, replaced Cory Lidle (4.90 full season ERA) with Eric Milton (4.75 full season ERA)
    Or, replaced Jose Acevedo (6.64 ERA as a Starter) with Ramon Ortiz (5.47 ERA as as Starter)

    BTW, Reidling won't put up his 5.00+ ERA again. And Weathers stands little chance of putting up a 4.15 ERA again. That's a push, but Dan O' doesn't know it. Lidle/Milton is pretty much a push as well (the Phillies think so too). If Weber's healthy, he'll top Van Poppel to be sure and Mercker will also deal better than Norton, tis true.

    But when you swap SP's in the range of 5.50 and 6.50 that's just the difference between losing ugly and losing uglier-er. And when you give up the number of Runs the Reds' starters project to give up...well, let's just say that they make the pen less of a factor than they should be even if that pen is improved. Tough to make a difference when constantly pitching from behind no matter how good you are.

    There's no obvious "great" improvement there other than a LHP who'll top out at 65 IP.
    Don't you think the possibility exists that Ramon Ortiz' numbers could go up somewhat due to not having to face the DH in the NL? I'm not sure how MUCH that will help him, but it's something to consider.

    Also, on Weathers, I would be very pleased if he put up numbers as good as if not better than last year's numbers:

    2000: 3.07 ERA
    2001: 2.41 ERA
    2002: 2.91 ERA
    2003: 3.08 ERA
    2004: 4.15 ERA

    He has been a much better pitcher overall since converting to pretty much only a reliever.

  7. #171
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by CincyRedsFan30
    Don't you think the possibility exists that Ramon Ortiz' numbers could go up somewhat due to not having to face the DH in the NL? I'm not sure how MUCH that will help him, but it's something to consider.

    Also, on Weathers, I would be very pleased if he put up numbers as good as if not better than last year's numbers:

    2000: 3.07 ERA
    2001: 2.41 ERA
    2002: 2.91 ERA
    2003: 3.08 ERA
    2004: 4.15 ERA

    He has been a much better pitcher overall since converting to pretty much only a reliever.
    I think that there's a possibility that ANYONE'S numbers can go up or down. It's the probability of improvement that I worry about (ie. low probability).

    The reason I worry about Weathers is that he's 35 and thus, projects to be more performance-volatile than I'd like. That 4.15 ERA last year was a product of a HR rate that was over twice that of 2003 and 2002. And that wasn't due to playing in Houston.

    Now, is is possible that Weathers goes all Todd Jones for the Reds in 2005? Sure, it's possible. But it's possible that Weathers blows up as well. Considering that a 4.15 ERA in the pen isn't such great shakes anyway- particularly if he's trying to hold games rather than relieve early, I'm left worrying about the guy.
    "The problem with strikeouts isn't that they hurt your team, it's that they hurt your feelings..." --Rob Neyer

    "The single most important thing for a hitter is to get a good pitch to hit. A good hitter can hit a pitch that’s over the plate three times better than a great hitter with a ball in a tough spot.”
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  8. #172
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Oh, I understand your point, and it certainly is a cause for a little concern, but I just wanted to point those numbers out. Personally, I think he'll be pretty effective for us overall, but I guess we'll soon find out, won't we?

  9. #173
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    If, as you say,

    Or, replaced Cory Lidle (4.90 full season ERA) with Eric Milton (4.75 full season ERA)
    AND if, as you again say,

    Weber's healthy, he'll top Van Poppel to be sure and Mercker will also deal better than Norton, tis true.
    AND Randa is indeed that much of an improvement,

    THEN

    the Reds improved.

    ___________________________________

    Too,

    BTW, Reidling won't put up his 5.00+ ERA again. And Weathers stands little chance of putting up a 4.15 ERA again. That's a push, but Dan O' doesn't know it. Lidle/Milton is pretty much a push as well (the Phillies think so too).
    I crave statistics now. You've converted me. I know Voras McCracken isn't a utility infielder with a penchant for striking out in the clutch. I've learned that K's matter little to nothing in the overall scheme of all things Dunnian. Bill James should be canonized into Annie Savoy's Church of Baseball. While my Pythagorean may still only be A+B+C, I'm looking to square everything away.

    And, oh yeah, I, like the Outlay Josey Wales, am from Missouri.

    Show me.
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  10. #174
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by letsgojunior
    D

    They overspent on mediocre talent, potentially precluding LTC's for Dunn and Kearns, and allowing almost no future payroll flexibility with the expensive, underproductive tandem of Graves-Griffey-Casey (not as bad as the others)-Milton.
    I agree 100%.

    And by "D," I think they might have been better off doing nothing. I think they're record will be very similar to last year, and they'll be stuck with bad LTCs making the signing of Dunn very difficult.
    ". . . acquiring J. Blanton from Oakland for, apparently, Bailey/Cueto, Votto and a lesser prospect. I do it in a second . . . The Reds' equation this year is simple: Make Matt Belisle your #3 starter . . . trade for Blanton, win 85 or more, be in the mix all summer." - Paul Daugherty, Feb. 8, 2008

  11. #175
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Eric Milton is tradeable. There is always a market for a left handed starting pitcher. If we were out of it at the deadline we could easily spin him for a couple prospects to a team like the Sox or Yankees. He will pitch 200 innings and win 10+ games for us. I'll take that because it not only improves the rotation, it takes stress off the bullpen which in turn makes them better.

    Ramon Ortiz could be the biggest addition of them all or he could be the worst. He got what he wanted.....a fresh start and a promised spot in the rotation. I could easily see him pitching very well this season. He is another one that could pitch 200 innings and win 10+ and take the pressure off of the pen. If he flops, we're only on the hook for one year then he's gone. If he pitches well then we got an absolute steal and can bring him back in 2006.

    Joe Randa is an upgrade over anything we've ran out there at third in a year and a half. The knock on him his he hits an "empty" .287. He doesn't walk or hit for power. In our lineup, we've got some pretty good on base guys in Junior, Casey, Dunn and Jiminez. We've obviously got enough power to make up for his "empty" 15 or so career average in homeruns. He will hit 15 homeruns and drive in 70 in a lineup that was already stacked without him. He will play very solid defense. There is not one 3B in the organization who can do that right now. We got him cheap and he provides a very good one year bridge to Edwin Encarnacion. If the Reds fall out of the race and Edwin is ready to go, then you spin Randa for a prospect.

    Rich Aurillia is another one that could be a huge pickup. Not long ago he was an MVP candidate. He has had steady declines in his numbers and was hurt much of last season. We picked him up on a minor league deal for very cheap. If he rebounds to the Aurillia of a couple years ago he is our starting shortstop. If not, you are not on the hook for much of anything at all as it's a minor league contract.

    Kent Merkcer is one of the best lefthanded relievers in baseball. I don't think anyone could argue that he is not a solid addition to the weakest part of our team last season.

    Ben Weber is yet another one who could sneak up on people. Before he came down with Carpel Tunnle last season he was one of the best relievers in the game for a number of years. All indications are he's over that and is ready to go and there's really no reason to believe he won't get back to where he was before the injury. If not, then we release him and let one of our talented kids have a shot.

    Jack McKeon was not happy to lose David Weathers. He is someone who can give you solid numbers out of the bullpen and give you a spot start now and then and pitch well. He has pleanty of experience and is not scared of anything. He will take the ball in any situation. I'll take a bulldog mentality with good numbers anyday of the week.

    You may not like the pickups. You may have prefered someone else. But I just don't see how anyone could possibly say they were better off doing nothing.
    "Strickland Propane... Taste the meat, not the heat." - Hank Hill

  12. #176
    You know his story Redsland's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    No one is saying that the Reds haven't improved by replacing rotting, stinking garbage with mere refuse.

    What people are saying is that incremental improvement, particularly at a time when cash apparently pours torrentially from the skies, is a waste of resources that could have been much better utilized if the goal is to get us into the post season anytime soon.
    Makes all the routine posts.

  13. #177
    Member SteelSD's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Show me.
    Ok.

    157 Runs. That's the Run Differential improvement the Reds need to have a legit shot at a .500 W/L record in 2005.

    They need an improvement of well over 200 Runs between the offense and defense just to sniff the playoffs. A 250 Run swing might make it in. That was Dan O'Brien's job this offseason- to find those Runs. Instead, he spent a whole lotta change to leave the Reds nowhere near the first benchmark.

    Here's the problem...I can't show you where those Runs are because I don't know where they're hiding. They're certainly not in the back pockets of Milton, Weber, Weathers, and Randa.

    Do you know where they are?
    "The problem with strikeouts isn't that they hurt your team, it's that they hurt your feelings..." --Rob Neyer

    "The single most important thing for a hitter is to get a good pitch to hit. A good hitter can hit a pitch that’s over the plate three times better than a great hitter with a ball in a tough spot.”
    --Ted Williams

  14. #178
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Spend the money better? Like getting Matt Clement who wasn't intested in coming here? Like getting Odalis Perez who wasn't interested in coming here? Like signing Dunn to a long term deal who wasn't interested in signing for more than one season this year?

    I have no inside knowledge, but I could almost promise you that these moves in no way shape or form will hinder us from giving Dunn a long term deal. In fact they may actually help us in that situation. The moves we made this winter may speak volumes to Dunn in the fact that we finally opened the purse to make an effort to improve the team. He probably didn't want to sign a long term deal because this team has never shown an interest in paying market value for it's talent. They also have not shown in quite some time that they are serious about making improvement geared towards winning. They did both this winter and that has to look good to Adam Dunn right about now.
    "Strickland Propane... Taste the meat, not the heat." - Hank Hill

  15. #179
    You know his story Redsland's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by redsfan30
    I have no inside knowledge, but I could almost promise you that…


    You mean you can guess. So can I. I've heard Allen cry poor for eight years. I'm not going to assume that year's spending frenzy is anything more than an aberration until he shows me otherwise.

    And I never mentioned Dunn. You did.

    Quote Originally Posted by redsfan30
    Spend the money better? Like getting Matt Clement who wasn't intested in coming here? Like getting Odalis Perez who wasn't interested in coming here? Like signing Dunn to a long term deal who wasn't interested in signing for more than one season this year?
    Or putting it in his pocket until the trading deadline. Or saving it for the draft. Or printing up ticket vouchers to prop up attendance. Or throwing it into the deal that gets Danny Graves out of here. Or sticking it in the bank for a rainy day.

    He didn't have to give to 4.76, or 4.60, or 4.46, or even 4.19. But he did.
    Makes all the routine posts.

  16. #180
    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: Grade the offseason.

    Quote Originally Posted by redsfan30
    Spend the money better? Like getting Matt Clement who wasn't intested in coming here? Like getting Odalis Perez who wasn't interested in coming here? Like signing Dunn to a long term deal who wasn't interested in signing for more than one season this year?
    What you've done here is create a scenario that takes any responsibility away from the general manager. You're saying there's was nothing he could do to get the team where they needed to be. If that's the case, then there really isn't any need for a GM in the first place.

    And if none of these players are interested in coming here right now, that in istelf is an indictment on the front office. If that's the case, then the Reds need to get guys in the FO who will make these guys want to come here.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David


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