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Thread: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

  1. #1
    Making sense of it all Matt700wlw's Avatar
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    Jan 2004

    CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    Weekend Buzz: Meet the new Red Machine
    April 30, 2006
    By Scott Miller
    CBS SportsLine.com Senior Writer
    Tell Scott your opinion!

    Here's the Weekend Buzz, while you were raising a glass to toast at the Boss Man's wedding ...

    Cincinnati Red Hots: As far as honeymoon periods go, new Cincinnati general manager Wayne Krivsky is finding this sure beats 10 days in Hawaii.

    The game's hottest team as April turns into May, the new Red Machine is surprisingly balanced, surprisingly efficient and, thanks to perfectly placed pieces such as Bronson Arroyo, Brandon Phillips, David Ross and Scott Hatteberg, not prepared to drop the "surprising" tag anytime soon.

    The past three Fridays, the Reds have tamed aces Roy Oswalt (Houston), Ben Sheets (Milwaukee) and Chris Carpenter (St. Louis, the 2005 NL Cy Young winner). Also in that span -- though not on a Friday -- they roughed up Florida's Dontrelle Willis.

    "I was hoping we could stay under the radar," Krivsky was saying the other night over the telephone after the Reds moved into first place in the NL Central. "But I think our cover's blown."

    Past Reds teams were one-dimensional bangers that employed the same philosophy as your rec league softball team: Outscore the other guys. The difference so far this season: Their lineup is much more balanced and the Reds are finally getting some pitching. Not that all of their pitching woes are solved, but Arroyo (4-0) has been a huge acquisition and opening-day starter Aaron Harang (4-1) has roared to life in winning four consecutive decisions.

    Cincinnati has been able to rest its bullpen when Arroyo pitches -- he's worked into the seventh inning or deeper in four of five starts -- silencing critics who chafed when Krivsky grabbed him from Boston for slugger Wily Mo Pena. Besides, critics, take note: Until Pena hit his third home run Sunday, he and Arroyo were tied with two apiece.

    Leadoff man Ryan Freel and No. 2 hitter Felipe Lopez already have a combined 17 steals (Lopez has nine, Freel eight). But perhaps the best example of the New Reds is the smart work of Phillips, who is taking consistently good at-bats, hitting to all fields and navigating the bases as if in possession of a personal GPS device.

    In Saturday's win over Houston, he swiped third with Freel at the plate, then alertly scored on a wild pitch that didn't even bounce all the way to the backstop.

    The night before, Phillips stole second base, snatched third on a routine ground ball to shortstop -- "A lot of guys wouldn't have even tried that," Krivsky says -- and was in position to score on a squibber to second baseman Craig Biggio. There wasn't even a play at the plate.

    And last week in Milwaukee, Phillips scored from second base on an infield hit, never even hesitating while rounding third.

    Then there's Ross, who according to Krivsky "doesn't get enough pub. He's done a hell of a job as Arroyo's catcher. I'm very pleased. He's handling the pitching staff, calling games, receiving the ball very well."

    The youngest player on the team, 23-year-old Edwin Encarnacion, leads the team with 24 RBI -- in no small part because he is working counts much better than he did last year. After fanning 60 times against only 20 walks in 69 games 2005, he's struck out 13 times and walked 12 in 21 games in '06. Just as encouraging, under the tutelage of Bucky Dent, the Reds already have seen improvements in both Encarnacion's footwork and glovework at third base.

    Where the difference between the old Reds and the new Reds is most notable, though, is upstairs, where new owner Bob Castellini has made it clear he is as interested in winning as he is in the bottom line. Following the Marge Schott and Carl Lindner eras, it was no small thing for the Reds to designate infielder Tony Womack for assignment last week -- and risk eating roughly $900,000 of his contract.

    "I think the players have a lot of faith in ownership now," Krivsky acknowledges. "I think they know Bob Castellini is in this to win."

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  3. #2
    Member GAC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Bellefontaine, Ohio

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    New BRM?

    Verdict still out there by a lonnng shot.

    But this team, with it's speed (been missing for the last fews years) is definitely fun to watch.
    "In my day you had musicians who experimented with drugs. Now it's druggies experimenting with music" - Alfred G Clark (circa 1972)

  4. #3
    Moderator RedlegJake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Saint Joseph, Mo

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    I'm beginning to believe that in a year or two people will talk about competitive small market franchises and mention Cincy in the same breath with Oakland and Minnesota - Krivsky impresses me that much.

  5. #4
    Ripsnort wheels's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Columbus, Ohio

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    They're giving us everything so far.

    There's no possible way this season could begin any better.

    Let's hope they can weather the downswings enough to keep in it.
    "Baseball players are smarter than football players. How often do you see a baseball team penalized for too many men on the field?" ~ Jim Bouton

  6. #5
    The Lineups stink. KronoRed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    West N. Carolina

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    New Red machine?

    Lets look back in 10 years.
    Go Gators!

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Hilliard, OH

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    "Cincinnati has been able to rest its bullpen when Arroyo pitches -- he's worked into the seventh inning or deeper in four of five starts"
    I heard a stat today that the starters have gone the fourth longest in innings pitched in the NL. Last year, they were 11th, so that's a huge improvement.
    Reds record while I was in attendance in 2006: 7-2
    Reds record while I was in attendance in 2007: 2-0
    Reds record while I'm in attendance in 2008: 0-1
    "I wish the stadium was filled up every night." - Bronson Arroyo, Cincinnati Enquirer - February 9, 2007

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Cincinnati, Ohio

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    I think Chris Chambliss should get a lot of credit. I've been very frustrated in recent years seeing our hitters swinging for the fences and playing HR derby. This team knows how to work a count, get on base and move runners along. And it hasn't cost them the ability to hit the HR. This is much more fun to watch as a fan and the results are there too (setting a team record for runs scored in April). In recent years I'd cringe everytime men were on base as the count would work its way to 2 strikes...I could just see that strike out happening. But this year, I'm confident that they'll get that runner in somehow.

  9. #8
    Member Topcat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    Krivsky's given the Red's Fans hope way faster than they ever could have hoped for. Phillips is young, Arroyo's in a 3 year deal and David Ross has earned his right to be on this team. I am just a little afraid of What Cody Ross may do for the reds. My reasoning is that if he ends up contributing like the above mentioned players. I will feel like Our team has made a deal with the devil, lol.

    Do I truly believe he is done yet? Nope. This team is not on a 4 yr rebuild but a fast track to contend within 2 years !

  10. #9
    Mon chou Choo vaticanplum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    I so love seeing this in the standings:

    There is no such thing as a pitching prospect.

  11. #10
    Member Jpup's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Southern KY

    Re: CBS Sportline: The New Red Machine

    This is the best Reds team in 10 years, at least. Trade for another "good" pitcher and the Reds are in the playoffs, IMO.

    sorry, the game got to me tonight.
    "My mission is to be the ray of hope, the guy who stands out there on that beautiful field and owns up to his mistakes and lets people know it's never completely hopeless, no matter how bad it seems at the time. I have a platform and a message, and now I go to bed at night, sober and happy, praying I can be a good messenger." -Josh Hamilton

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