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Thread: Freeing up the glut

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    Freeing up the glut

    With the Reds situation in flux going into the offseason, it got me to thinking. I think its pretty obvious at this point (maybe to everyone except Wayne Krivsky) that Jay Bruce and Joey Votto are ready to play at the major league level. However the problem remains that the Reds have 3 OF's (Dunn, Griffey, Hamilton) and a LH-hitting 1B (Hatteberg) that all are under contract for next year (provided their relatively cheap options get picked up) and have all produced very well this year.

    So what's the solution? Trading Dunn and/or Griffey is the popular answer. Another camp suggests moving one of them to 1B, an idea that would no doubt be very unpopular with the transplanted player. Yet others still suggest trading Votto and/or Hatteberg.

    Jay Bruce must have a spot to play in next year. Josh Hamilton has obviously earned a starting spot as well. That leaves one corner OF spot and 1B in flux. Between Dunn, Jr., Votto and Hatteberg two of them must go in order for the Reds to maximize their talent on the field. Unfortunately Hatteberg probably won't bring much back in an offseason (a deadline deal may be different). Given the current FA market, and the value of pitching on the open market, I honestly believe that payflex (in the short term) is overrated. I am much more concerned with service time at this point. If the Reds are going to lose a player (like Dunn, for instance) to FA it is one thing, but I am not one to advocate trading Dunn to free up money to sign another Kyle Lohse to an overpriced deal.

    My question is this: Given all the variables that are involved (age, contract status, major league production, etc.) which of the following three players do you think could bring the biggest return talent-wise this offseason: Adam Dunn, Ken Griffey Jr., or Joey Votto? Is it even close? My contention is whoever could bring back the most talent in a trade should be the one to go, period. Thoughts?
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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    First, I'm not sure I entirely agree with your premise that it's obvious to everyone that Bruce and Votto are ready for the majors.

    I think Votto may be ready and may well (and probably should) see a September call up and get some playing time. I'll address part of the puzzle; I'd pick up Hatteberg's option and have him available off the bench and to spell Votto some next year.

    Bruce might be ready, but likewise, it's possible he could use some continued seasoning. Even if he doesn't need further seasoning, he's young and starting out in AAA next season won't hurt him and could very likely help him.

    But given the current contract situations with our present three starting outfielders, I don't think it's rocket science as to how to handle this. Back to the present contracts. You pick up Dunn's option, which is reasonable and affordable. I would also work to extend him, but that's a seperate issue. Hamilton you have the rights to for a number of years, so he's here, presently in center field. Griffey is the key. If something comes along during the off-season that gives us the proper return, then we take it and move him. Griffey's contract is done after next year unless we pick up his option. I think that's doubtful. That said, Griffey starts in right field, Bruce to AAA. Then as the season progresses, you move Griffey to a contender (the only move he'll allow with his 10/5 rights, IMO) and Bruce comes up.

    It doesn't strike me as terribly complex, to be honest with you.

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    He has the Evil Eye! flyer85's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    If you want to bring back talent the answer is to trade Votto, Bruce or Hamilton. Hatty, Jr and Dunn have limited trade value, certainly not enough to address the shortcomings on the mound.
    What are you, people? On dope? - Mr Hand

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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by flyer85 View Post
    If you want to bring back talent the answer is to trade Votto, Bruce or Hamilton. Hatty, Jr and Dunn have limited trade value, certainly not enough to address the shortcomings on the mound.
    So you think that Votto will bring back more talent on the mound than Jr. or Dunn?

    If that is indeed the case, I think you have to at least consider dealing him, despite the fact that I think it is generally counterproductive for a team like the Reds to trade a young, inexpensive player like Votto.

    I sincerely doubt they would consider it, but if you could potentially package Votto with Encarnacion (two guys I don't particularly want to give up) for a Matt Garza, I would do it in a second.
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    I think Votto has the most trade value. Dunn less so because of his D and contract. Griffey, due to age, durability concerns and veto power.
    "Bring on Rod Stupid!"

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    He has the Evil Eye! flyer85's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    I sincerely doubt they would consider it, but if you could potentially package Votto with Encarnacion (two guys I don't particularly want to give up) for a Matt Garza, I would do it in a second.
    I would want a 2nd pitcher back. The attrition rate on young pitching is too high to give up that amount of talent to gamble on a single pitcher. You would only make a trade like that if you are sure that Garza would put you over the top.
    What are you, people? On dope? - Mr Hand

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    Vampire Weekend @Bernie's camisadelgolf's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    I think Adam Dunn, by far, would bring in the most talent. He's consistently putting up big numbers (some of which are things you want to see in a baseball player ). Votto is still unproven at a position in which it's not too difficult to find productivity, and I think Ken Griffey is practically untradeable (contract status, veto power, age, etc.).

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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmetz View Post
    First, I'm not sure I entirely agree with your premise that it's obvious to everyone that Bruce and Votto are ready for the majors.


    But given the current contract situations with our present three starting outfielders, I don't think it's rocket science as to how to handle this. Back to the present contracts. You pick up Dunn's option, which is reasonable and affordable. I would also work to extend him, but that's a seperate issue. Hamilton you have the rights to for a number of years, so he's here, presently in center field. Griffey is the key. If something comes along during the off-season that gives us the proper return, then we take it and move him. Griffey's contract is done after next year unless we pick up his option. I think that's doubtful. That said, Griffey starts in right field, Bruce to AAA. Then as the season progresses, you move Griffey to a contender (the only move he'll allow with his 10/5 rights, IMO) and Bruce comes up.

    It doesn't strike me as terribly complex, to be honest with you.

    I agree with this. Dunn stays, for several years if possible. Hamilton stays. Griffey's spot goes to Jay Bruce at some point fairly soon.

    My instinct is that Votto will be either be traded or will take over for Hatte as a platoon first baseman. It's common on RedsZone to say lefty/righty doesn't matter, but I think it's very important to have lefty/righty balance. Votto at first, with a lefty outfield, doesn't provide that balance.

    I know Votto is young and controlled by the Reds so it is arguable he should stay. I think this contract situation also improves his trade value. If he stays, I think he platoons with Cantu or another righty bat going forward.
    Last edited by Kc61; 08-28-2007 at 12:18 PM.

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    Pitching is the thing WVRedsFan's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    It may be just me, but I've had this feeling since they acquired Cantu (I can't spell it and I'm too lazy to look it up). They might be going to shop Votto for pitching. Just a hunch and I hope it isn't true. Why else so you acquire a 1st baseman when you've got your own heir apparent on the farm?

    Something else to ponder, I guess.

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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    The guy to trade first and foremost is Jay Bruce, if a top of the rotation pitcher is the expected return.

    With Dunn, Griffey and Hamilton in the outfield for the next year or two (hopefully, they resign Dunn), Bruce is an extra LH bat without a place to play. Bruce is killing the ball this year and, while I'd love to see him in a Reds uni for the next ten years, I'd rather see a #1 pitcher on the hill for the Reds. In order to do that, Bruce has to be part of a package to get that.

    Votto will not net that type of return, but he could be an addition to another package the Reds could use to either land a quality RH bat or another 3/4 pitcher.

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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRedsFan View Post
    Why else so you acquire a 1st baseman when you've got your own heir apparent on the farm?
    Bench depth and a right-handed batter.
    "Bring on Rod Stupid!"

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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Well I think the consensus seems to be that trading Votto would be the right move, based off of the assumptions that Votto would bring more talent in return than Jr or Dunn, and the Reds pick up the options on Hatteberg and Dunn.

    I agree that it appears Cantu was acquired to provide a right-handed compliment to the Hat, and I loved that move at the time. And as stated above, as much as I hate to see the Reds trade away young inexpensive talent, it is hard to find a place for Votto in the lefty-heavy lineup that will be around next year and apparently for years to come. If traded he will be a victim of circumstances, and if he can fetch a nice young pitcher (Kevin Slowey or Scott Baker?) to compliment Homer Bailey, I won't go into mourning over his loss.
    Last edited by Benihana; 08-28-2007 at 02:21 PM.
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by WVRedsFan View Post
    It may be just me, but I've had this feeling since they acquired Cantu (I can't spell it and I'm too lazy to look it up). They might be going to shop Votto for pitching. Just a hunch and I hope it isn't true. Why else so you acquire a 1st baseman when you've got your own heir apparent on the farm?

    Something else to ponder, I guess.
    Insurance in the event that Votto struggles hard? Platoon partner with Votto? Taking a low risk shot on a right hand bat?

    Just some different explinations that make sense (in addition to a planned trading of Votto).
    Last edited by Ltlabner; 08-28-2007 at 04:07 PM.
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by Ltlabner View Post
    Insurance in the event that Votto struggles hard? Platoon partner with Votto? Taking a low risk shot on a right hand bat?
    Exactly. The reason I love the Cantu acquisition is because its pretty much the same as the Phillips (and Hamilton) acquisition(s). Very low risk, very high reward flyer on a young guy that showed huge potential, and probably just needs a change of scenery. Also, if you remember, at the time the Reds acquired BP, they had a glut at 2B (Aurillia, Womack, FeLo) similar to the one they now have at 1B with Hatteberg and Votto. The same was true with Hamilton, with Dunn, Jr. Freel, and Denorfia all ahead of him in the OF. If Cantu turns out to be half the player either of these guys has, it was yet another unbelievable steal by Krivsky.
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    Pitching is the thing WVRedsFan's Avatar
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    Re: Freeing up the glut

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    Well I think the consensus seems to be that trading Votto would be the right move, based off of the assumptions that Votto would bring more talent in return than Jr or Dunn, and the Reds pick up the options on Hatteberg and Dunn.

    I agree that it appears Cantu was acquired to provide a right-handed compliment to the Hat, and I loved that move at the time. And as stated above, as much as I hate to see the Reds trade away young inexpensive talent, it is hard to find a place for Votto in the lefty-heavy lineup that will be around next year and apparently for years to come. If traded he will be a victim of circumstances, and if he can fetch a nice young pitcher (Kevin Slowey or Scott Baker?) to compliment Homer Bailey, I won't go into mourning over his loss.
    Of course, the more choice you have...

    I do think keeping Hatteberg is a big risk considering his age, and I hate a platoon anywhere. In my mind, Krivsky and the Reds must think Cantu is the real deal and that would make a risky Votto dispendable. I don't like that and hope I'm wrong.


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