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Thread: Reds Need Power

  1. #1
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Reds Need Power

    There has been a lot of Discussion lately of options for 2007. Many have called for a lead-off type to play CF, others have said play Denorfia there. Some have said move Phillips to SS others have said leave him at 2B. Iíll say now that I donít think we need a lead-off type. My biggest concern for this team in 2007 is power. This is a little lengthy but Iíll try to lay out the problem and the options as I see them. Iím sure there will be much disagreement.

    1B has been pretty much handed to Hatteberg. This year Hatteberg has slugged .439. The board consensus is that Hatte will drop off in 2007. His pattern suggests good even numbers years and bad odd numbered years. In 2005 Hatte slugged a whopping .343 and in 2003 he slugged .383. I expect Hatteís slugging to drop below .400 in 2007.

    Middle IF has seen a big year out of Rich Aurilia slugging over .500. Richie is a free agent. He probably will get a lot of 2 year offers on the market. I could easily see him get a 2 year $8 Million package with a team option for a 3rd year with a $1 Million buyout. I wouldn't pay that if I were the Reds, but I think some one will. Probably some one with a hole and no immediate help on the way at 3B. I think he'd look good in Philly myself.

    As for Phillips he has slugged a surprising .438 in 2006. In 2005 in AAA he slugged .409. I could see him drop below .400

    Catcher has seen unexpectedly good offense for the second year in a row. Valentin is a spot player and Larue is strictly a number 8 in the order guy. Ross has slugged .581 in 2006. He slugged .380 in 108 AB with PIT in 2005 and .291 in 165 AB for LA in 2004. We can not count on a repeat. A huge drop is likely IMO. Possibly to below .400.

    OF Freel is a top of the order guy who slugged .399 in 2006, .371 in 2005, and .368 in 2004. Denorfia is unproven. He has slugged well in the minors in 2004, 2005 and 2006, but he didn't put those numbers up until Age 24 in A+ ball in 2004. Not sure what we'll see from him, but I expect .375 tops. He may well OPS .750 which has been demonstrated to be average for a CF. The problem is with the other offensive problems the Reds need more than that.

    This leaves us with a line-up that has Dunn, Edwin and Griffey as the only reliable sluggers. Griffey should have his playing time reduced meaning we will see a lesser player more frequently in his place (hopefully in RF). The board seems to think that Freel has shown he is better as a supersub than as an everyday starter at a single position. That means this team needs to bring in at least 1 everyday player. Many have called for a lead-off hitter. I think we need power. This team needs an everyday player be it at 2B, SS or CF who can play plus defense and slug .450 or so. Looking at the Free Agent list, I'm not sure who that is.

    I am starting to agree with the Deno in CF crowd. Per Rotoworld yesterday, the Padres intend to exercise Mike Cameron's option (he was my first choice). I still like Torii Hunter (and his 29 HR in 2006) but feel he'll cost more than he is worth and Minnesota has an option on him. Aaron Rowand may be available. Philly may cut him loose with Victorino taking the job. He would be a consideration, but speculation is he'll go back to the White Sox. I like Deno better than any other option on the list. Unless the Coco Crisp dumping by Boston occurs. I donít see it myself w/o a replacement in place.

    That brings us to the MI. Jeff Kent on a 1 or 2 year deal might not be bad. He could play 1B against lefties and 2B on other days. He'll be expensive, his defense is poor at 2B and he is in a decline. He probably wouldn't play here anyway. I'd explore with him, but I wouldn't go nuts. Ray Durham will cost too much and really isn't a good 2B anymore. So that leaves Julio Lugo, Ronnie Belliard or Adam Kennedy. Lugo is the best SS on the list, but like many others I think Phillips value is maximized at SS and Lugo would probably cost a ton. He doesnít really solve the power outage anyway slugging only .260 with LA in 2006 (but .498 with Tampa Bay). He slugged .403 in 2005. Kennedy is worse from a slugging standpoint .379 in 2006 and .370 in 2005. Belliard has slugged only .353 since the trade to St. Louis and slugged .420 with Cleveland earlier in the year. He did slug .450 in 2005. But mini-Manny has a thick body that could slow down and may become a defensive liability. He was ok in 2005 but has dropped off in 2006. I could live with him for the right price.

    So what is the conclusion. With the news on Cameron, there is no best answer unless Hunter becomes available and comes much more cheaply than anticipated. The problem may solve itself if Phillips or Ross can repeat or Deno can approach his AAA stats. The problem becomes less urgent if Votto arrives in 2007 and adds the power needed to the line-up. So knowing help is on the way I wouldnít overpay multiple years for anyone when this is likely to be a one year problem. Iíd probably stick Deno in CF (I still have huge concerns about a bust here) and try to sign Belliard. Freel becomes a super-sub and insurance for Deno. Some one had the idea to play Freel in RF and Griffey at 1B against LHP. I like that one if KGJr will go for it. I hurry Votto along as much as possible.

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  3. #2
    Brett William Moore Will M's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    I agree we need power. If we trade Dunn and move Griffey to LF then we are REALLY hurting for power. Especially in GABP.


    MY PLAN -----

    Dunn to Tigers for Bonderman ( or to the Angels for E Santana ) with Griffey moving to left.

    C: platooning Valentin & Ross will produce above average offense

    1B: 1B may not be handed to Hatteberg. If Votto has a great spring he could win the 1B job relegating Hatteberg to bench duty. That would be good for the Reds. I would like the Reds to resign Aurillia to play 1B vs LHP and play ~80 games at 2B. I would prefer Aurillia to Kent ( he will come cheaper and will play better defense at 2b ).

    2B: Freel and Aurillia ( Freel also fills in at all 3 OF positions )

    SS: Phillips

    3B: EE

    LF: Griifey for ~120 games and Denorfia for ~40

    CF: ?

    RF: ?

    SP: Arroyo Harang Bonderman Milton Bailey/EZ

    RP: Bray Cormier Coffey Majik Belisle Weathers

    OPTIONS FOR RF/CF:

    Craig Wilson
    Aubrey Huff
    Jose Valentin ( at 2b with Freel moving to of )
    Alfonso Soriano!
    Pedro Feliz
    Raul Ibanez!
    Jim Edmonds (Team Option)
    Mike Cameron (Team Option)
    Kenny Lofton
    Gary Matthews Jr.
    Jay Payton
    Torii Hunter (Team Option)
    Milton Bradley???
    Aaron Rowand (Player + Team Options)(arb.)
    Dave Roberts
    Gary Sheffield! (Team Option)
    Jay Gibbons
    Trot Nixon
    J.D. Drew (Player Void Option)
    Jose Guillen???
    There are several power hitter amongst these free agents.

    Thoughts:

    1. Since Freel can't play everyday we may need a leadoff type hitter from RF or CF.

    2. I would rather trade Dunn for Ervin Santana or Bonderman and sign a free agent RF than move Griffey to RF and sign someone like Ted Lilly or Toma Ohka.

    3. I big factor for the Reds success in 2007 will be if Votto is ready and can provide power.

  4. #3
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by Will M View Post
    1. Since Freel can't play everyday we may need a leadoff type hitter from RF or CF.

    2. I would rather trade Dunn for Ervin Santana or Bonderman and sign a free agent RF than move Griffey to RF and sign someone like Ted Lilly or Toma Ohka.

    3. I big factor for the Reds success in 2007 will be if Votto is ready and can provide power.
    I think Deno and Freel handle lead-off.

    The Angels won't trade a pitcher. They will have Lackey, Santana and Jered Weaver as a top 3. Escobar is a free agent so they need to either resign him or add a pitcher with his money. Not convinced that Colon can be counted on and Saunders will be a number 5. The Angels have Adam Kennedy, Darin Erstad, Tim Salmon and Jeff weaver coming off the books. That is plenty of payflex to sign a Soriano or Sheffield to go with Vlad and fix the offense. The young guys take the spots of the guys leaving. They are not traded for a Dunn or some one like that.

    I hope you're right about Votto. He would make it look better IMO.

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    Stat geek...and proud
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by Will M View Post
    Dunn to the Tigers for Bonderman.
    Yeah, that'll happen.

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    Member blumj's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    Escobar is a free agent
    Are you sure? I thought he had another year on his contract, and I haven't seen him on any free agent lists.
    "Reality tells us there are no guarantees. Except that some day Jon Lester will be on that list of 100-game winners." - Peter Gammons

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    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by blumj View Post
    Are you sure? I thought he had another year on his contract, and I haven't seen him on any free agent lists.
    Got it from a thread here on Redslive. I'm not savy enough to post a link. Its titled 2007 free Agents.

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    Member blumj's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    Got it from a thread here on Redslive. I'm not savy enough to post a link. Its titled 2007 free Agents.
    I just checked, he would have been, but he signed a 3 year extension already during the season.
    "Reality tells us there are no guarantees. Except that some day Jon Lester will be on that list of 100-game winners." - Peter Gammons

  9. #8
    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Nice, well thought out post.

    That's too bad the Padres are going to exercise Cameron's option. Oh well, we would've probably been outbid for him anyhow. But that was a fantasy of mine as well.

    I think what this post shows is how difficult it is to get power in an up the middle position. Those guys make big money (particularly if they field well like Cameron).

    I agree we need power. I'd like the Reds to focus on upgrading 1b or possibly RF. Yes, that leaves Jr in CF, but I don't think the offense can absorb playing Deno (or Freel) every day. I'm just going to assume the middle infielder we add to replace Rich isn't going to be a big bat. I HOPE he can field well and I also hope Juan isn't penciled in to start at a MI slot.
    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!

  10. #9
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by blumj View Post
    Are you sure? I thought he had another year on his contract, and I haven't seen him on any free agent lists.
    Thanks. I missed that. Should have known to check instead of relying on an outdated thread. Surprised they signed Escobar with all his injury issues. That just means that the pitching is set and has a little depth in case of injury or "sophmore jinx." They still have a lot of money coming off the books to sign a bat and doesn't really alter the point that they won't make a big prospects for a bat deal. Only if they can't sign some one does that occur.

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    I think the assumption that 1st base has been handed to Hatteberg is not seeing the larger picture. I'm guessing that Hatteberg's signing is a "caretaker" one. I expect that sometime next year, Joey Votto may well be called up and Scott will move to the position originally stated when he was signed. Just MO.

  12. #11
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD View Post
    Nice, well thought out post.

    That's too bad the Padres are going to exercise Cameron's option. Oh well, we would've probably been outbid for him anyhow. But that was a fantasy of mine as well.

    I think what this post shows is how difficult it is to get power in an up the middle position. Those guys make big money (particularly if they field well like Cameron).

    I agree we need power. I'd like the Reds to focus on upgrading 1b or possibly RF. Yes, that leaves Jr in CF, but I don't think the offense can absorb playing Deno (or Freel) every day. I'm just going to assume the middle infielder we add to replace Rich isn't going to be a big bat. I HOPE he can field well and I also hope Juan isn't penciled in to start at a MI slot.
    If Juan is a starter at 2B or SS, then this team won't win 70 games in 2007 unless everything else changes for the better. I don't like any plan that leaves Griffey in CF. I think the lack of slugging at 1B is what really leads to this problem because, as you say, its hard to find power in an up the middle position. Can't really make a big move for a 1B type because that would block Votto. I think Votto may be the most likely source for added power. I just don't know when he'll be ready or if the vet loving team will let him play when he is. I like Hatte, but unless he goes on the Balco late career plan (he did spend a few years in the bay area ), the team is really hamstrung with him at 1B. Going into 2006 the Reds had power in some other areas that made the need for power at 1B less urgent. Now they don't.

    One possibility is to sign a big 1B bat and trade Votto for pitching. Not sure I like that though. I don't think you can get a top of the rotation talent for a minor league 1B. A young 1B who has hit in the majors maybe, but not a minor league one. 1B that can hit aren't that hard to find (or create by moving from another spot) and I doubt anyone would trade a top starter for one with no major league track record.

  13. #12
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmetz View Post
    I think the assumption that 1st base has been handed to Hatteberg is not seeing the larger picture. I'm guessing that Hatteberg's signing is a "caretaker" one. I expect that sometime next year, Joey Votto may well be called up and Scott will move to the position originally stated when he was signed. Just MO.
    I agree he is a caretaker. Its just in the short term it leaves the team short on power. The sooner Votto is ready the better. Didn't see your post before I posted above, but it sounds like we agree here.

  14. #13
    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Reds Need Power

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    I agree he is a caretaker. Its just in the short term it leaves the team short on power. The sooner Votto is ready the better. Didn't see your post before I posted above, but it sounds like we agree here.
    I think sometimes we're in the "not seeing the forest for the trees" mode around here. While I think (and you agree) that Hatt's a caretaker, I'm can't say how much of the season that will be (nor project how Votto will do at AAA - remember I think WK is very big on "step by step" on development - I think our days of seeing kids jumping levels will be rare in his tenure, so we'll have to see how Votto performs at the next level). Likewise the signing of Castro and Valentin. I see those two as building (and solidifying) the bench. The Reds will address one of the middle infield positions in the offseason. I doubt seriously that the signing of Castro to an extension is for regular playing. Much in the same way as I've said Clayton was never a longterm solution. I think he's here because Washington didn't need him, the proverbial throw-in.

    Even the conglomeration of pitchers we've collected doesn't mean many will be on next year's roster. And the biggest plus, IMO, is that we did it without giving up alot (Washington trade aside - we'll see what history says on that one).

  15. #14
    Brett William Moore Will M's Avatar
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    OK then what about?

    If we can't get E Santana or Bonderman for Dunn then:

    Dunn to Tigers for F Rodney & Miner/Maroth with Griffey moving to left.
    Coffey or Majik to Braves for Marcus Giles ( this is mentioned in another thread ).

    Then we have:

    C: platooning Valentin & Ross will produce above average offense

    1B: 1B may not be handed to Hatteberg. If Votto has a great spring he could win the 1B job relegating Hatteberg to bench duty. That would be good for the Reds. I would like the Reds to resign Aurillia to play 1B vs LHP and play some at 2B/3B.

    2B: M Giles +- Aurillia

    SS: Phillips

    3B: EE

    LF: Griifey for ~120 games and Denorfia/Freel for ~40

    CF: Gary Matthews Jr

    RF: Milton Bradley

    Supersub: Freel

    SP: Arroyo, Harang, Miner/Maroth, Milton, Bailey/EZ

    RP: F Rodney Bray Cormier Coffey ( or Majik ) Belisle Weathers

    Thoughts:

    EVERY position could give us 20+ home runs

    Defense is vastly improved. Matthews is near gold glove in CF. Bradley has CF range & a good arm.

    The team has excellent depth.

    The pitching staff has 2 very good starters and a very deep bullpen.

  16. #15
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    Re: OK then what about?

    Quote Originally Posted by Will M View Post
    If we can't get E Santana or Bonderman for Dunn then:

    Dunn to Tigers for F Rodney & Miner/Maroth with Griffey moving to left.
    Coffey or Majik to Braves for Marcus Giles ( this is mentioned in another thread ).

    Then we have:

    C: platooning Valentin & Ross will produce above average offense

    1B: 1B may not be handed to Hatteberg. If Votto has a great spring he could win the 1B job relegating Hatteberg to bench duty. That would be good for the Reds. I would like the Reds to resign Aurillia to play 1B vs LHP and play some at 2B/3B.

    2B: M Giles +- Aurillia

    SS: Phillips

    3B: EE

    LF: Griifey for ~120 games and Denorfia/Freel for ~40

    CF: Gary Matthews Jr

    RF: Milton Bradley

    Supersub: Freel

    SP: Arroyo, Harang, Miner/Maroth, Milton, Bailey/EZ

    RP: F Rodney Bray Cormier Coffey ( or Majik ) Belisle Weathers

    Thoughts:

    EVERY position could give us 20+ home runs

    Defense is vastly improved. Matthews is near gold glove in CF. Bradley has CF range & a good arm.

    The team has excellent depth.

    The pitching staff has 2 very good starters and a very deep bullpen.

    Love the optomism but its just not logical to overhaul the team like that.

    To the main point of this thread, I think that power is over-rated. Power is streaky. Streaks are exactly how the Reds fell out of contention. If you rely on offense to win you games, you are going to end up exactly like the Reds have in the past. People forget that the Reds have had some absolutely frieghtening offensive clubs in the past. The problem, pitching plain and simple. Defense also hasn't helped out.

    I think that the days of homerun oriented clubs are coming to an end here in Cincinnati. Pitching, defense, and situational hitting. That will be the emphasis. That is the throw back type of baseball that is cheaper as far as offense, and frees money for pitching. More of an equalizing effect will occur and instead of getting 10 runs in one game and 1 in the next, we will see more games with 3 or 4 runs, but the Reds will give up far less. On run games mean the same in the end as 5 run games. If all things go as planned for Krivsky, that is what is in our future. I must say, I would be happy with that. Theres a long way to go for that though. Its a project. Don't hold out hope of being able to turn this team into a Championship caliber team next year. That is just not plausible. Lets be honest, this team was a wreck when B. Cast took over.


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