Here is the Reds Hot Stove League show report for 1-17-07. Marty was the host of another abbreviated show tonight. Marty talked about the Lohse signing and mentioned that Jr. got his cast off yesterday. He also talked about the DDN story about Jr. being receptive to moving to right field. Marty said he would rather hear it from Jr. rather than Narron or Jr.'s agent.
After commercial, Marty pimped season tickets. He talked about the caravan and said the minor league player of the year will be announced at the LaSalle Sports Stag next week. The first caller asked how Vern Ruhle was doing. Marty said he hasn't heard anything but assumes no news is good news. The caller asked if Marty thought the Reds had a prayer to win the division. Marty said that he has been surprised the Reds haven't been very active but still feels the division is up for grabs. Marty said he was concerned about the starting pitching - especially Milton and Lohse. He thinks Homer will be a major key for the team next year and it depends on when he will get the call.
The next caller said that he agreed with Marty on Milton and Lohse and Milton should switch with Homer and take his place in AAA. (What does this guy have against the fine citizens of Louisville?) He said that they should have made more of a push to re-sign Schoeneweis. Marty said that he didn't think Schoeneweis and Aurilia wanted to come back and Schoeneweis wanted to be on a bigger stage and that's why he signed with the Mets. The caller said that he would liked to have seen Aurilia start somewhere on a regular basis. He also said that Carlos Zambrano was asking for $15M a year from the Cubs while Harang will make $5.5M at the most and he bemoaned the disparity. Marty said he thinks the Reds will sign Harang to a multi year deal.
After commercial the next caller asked how long will the twin problems that plagued the Reds lo these many years - the bullpen and leaving runners on base - go on. Marty said those could be major keys to the success or failure of the Reds next year. He said they cannot continue to strike out like they have for the past few years. He also said the closer role will probably be shared by Stanton and Weathers and there are a lot of question marks in a division that is very winnable and every team in the Central has question marks.
The next caller asked about trading Dunn for a pitcher. Marty said that Dunn is still here probably because there wasn't a great market for him. He said if the Reds had interest in trading him, they waited one year too long. He said this has nothing to do with the continuing and ongoing potential that he has. He said it's mind-boggling what he'd be able to do if he made better contact. He said at some point down the road you have to fish or cut bait and we'll see how Brook Jacoby can help him. Marty thinks Dunn is a big time talent and his numbers would be scary if he made better contact. The caller asked if he is a free agent at the end of this year. Marty said he is. (Not to dash Marty's hopes but the Reds hold an option for 2008 on Dunn).
The next caller said he was frustrated by Dunn's defense and his inability to hit with runners in scoring position. Marty said that a lot of people assumed that the Astros would be interested in Dunn but it doesn't look like it now. He said he'd love to see him come to camp lighter cause he thinks he was overweight last year and would love to see him have a breakout year. The caller said he'd like to see him outside the division and thinks he'd make a great DH. Marty said he didn't think there was much interest in him.
The next caller said that the market this season resembles the year when A-Rod and Manny signed their big deals for ridiculous money. He said he was happy the Reds didn't tie anyone up to a ridiculous deal. Marty said the Gonzo deal automatically made the pitching better and Conine will be better than everyone thinks. (I should get a macro for that sentence. It would save me time when Marty says that every freaking week.) He said Conine has a young body. (Oh my. ) Marty doesn't think Homer will be in AAA very long.
Thus endeth the Reds Hot Stove League show report for 1-17-07. So let it be written. So let it be done.