Aggressive Reds GM
Cincinnati Reds general manager Wayne Krivsky took a moment in mid-December to look at the team’s 40-man roster and even he was surprised to see the number of new names.
Twenty of the players listed were not in the organization when the team’s new owner, Bob Castellini, hired Krivsky on Feb. 8 to alter the direction of the franchise.
Looking back, Krivsky can scarcely remember the first weeks on the job.
"It’s kind of unusual to get a job that late," he said. "I had a week before the start of spring training, and Adam Dunn’s arbitration hearing was coming up. I had a lot on my plate. I don’t expect that kind of turnover this year with a full year on the job."
Still, a whirlwind of change has followed his arrival with 45 players coming through the door. Some deals have drawn universal praise —think pitcher Bronson Arroyo and second baseman Brandon Phillips.
Others haven’t — the trade of shortstop Felipe Lopez and right fielder Austin Kearns to the Washington Nationals in July continues to raise hackles.
"I knew it was going to be a controversial trade," Krivsky said. "The state of our bullpen needed to be addressed or we were going to be in trouble. And something that is overlooked is that the trade opened a spot (in right field) for Ryan Freel to play. Where else was he going to play? "
The Reds filed a grievance with Major League Baseball because pitcher Gary Majewski arrived from the Nationals with a sore right shoulder. That remains in limbo. But he is healthy now, Krivsky said, and expected to be an integral part of the ’07 bullpen.
The organizational overhaul is ongoing, with youngsters such as pitcher Homer Bailey and outfielders Jay Bruce and Drew Stubbs rising through the minor-league system.
"It takes time," Krivsky said. "The goal is to have a couple of guys ready to help the major-league club every year. You want to start a steady stream of guys. The Minnesota Twins, where I came from, are the model for that.
"We want to get a little younger at every level. You don’t want older guys impeding the progress of younger players. We want to be considered the kind of organization that contends every year."
— Jim Massie