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Thread: Positional Depth 2008

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  1. #1
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Positional Depth 2008

    Here is a rough framework for the Red's positional depth. After yesterday's announced moves the picture clears significantly.

    There are some known issues with the chart but its a starting point:

    1. Its possible I missed someone and some spots are pretty iffy.
    2. Juan Castro won't be the AAA utility IF
    3. Todd Frazier starting out in AA is probably unlikely even if I would do that with him.
    4. Lots of questions about SS and 3B with many players but maybe not all ready for the levels where the openings are.
    5. Some players play multiple positions (Rosales, Griffin, probably FRazier, Soto and Valaika) and are listed at the spot that fits best

    Anyhow, its a start, and feel free to chime in with corrections, ommissions and disagreements.

    Code:
    Pos		Cin		AAA		AA		A+		A-		Rookie+		Rookie
    1B		Votto		A. Phillips	T. Guttierez	Parker		McKennon	Rimes	
    2B		B. Phillips	A. Green	De Jesus	Turner		Kendrick	Baker	
    SS		Gonzalez	Janish		Jo. Castro	Eymann		Cozart		Kuo		Kahaulelio
    3B		Encarnacion	Rosales		Frazier		Francisco	Waring		Soto	
    LF		Dunn		Dorn		Cumberland	Heisey		Menchaca	Pennial		Bastardo
    CF		Bruce		Dickerson	Strait		Stubbs		K. Jones	Reed		Oliveras
    RF		Griffey		Fiorentino	Henry		Holden		Maunus		M. Jones	Brown
    C		Ross		Hanigan		Tatum		Esquer		Long		Mesoraco	Denove
    													
    4OF		Hopper		Gil		Szymanski	Kainer		Phipps		G. Cabrera	R. Crosby
    U		Freel (Multi)	J.Cabrera (Mul)	Griffin (Mul)	Valaika (IF)	Bartles (3B)	Mendez (3B)	Pullen
    U		Hatteberg (1B)	Barker (1B)	Piepkorn (1B)	Meade ( C)	Louwsma (1B)	Feiner (SS)	Wideman ( C)
    IF		Keppinger	Ju. Castro	Anderson	Tordi (SS)	A. Cabrera (SS)	Gauldron	Moreta (SS)
    C		Javy		Colina		Kroski		Rodriguez	Bour		Cech		Waller
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  2. #2
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    I don't know exactly how its going to work out, but I don't think that Soto can start in Rookie ball or that Valaika is a utility guy.

  3. #3
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by dougdirt View Post
    I don't know exactly how its going to work out, but I don't think that Soto can start in Rookie ball or that Valaika is a utility guy.
    Yeah, thats part of what I was referring to with comment about SS and 3B (I guess 2B as well).

    I hope Soto jumps to Dayton, but Cozart probably needs to stay there and both Waring and Bartles will probably be there as well. I guess they could try him at 2B. Since he'll be only 19 in February and played in the GCL last year, a one level promotion to Billings seems reasonable if not ideal.

    Valaika could very well play SS at Sarasota, but since the team seems to be ready to move him to 2B, I listed him at utility because I think he'll play both spots. Turner is ready for A+ as well and he's pretty well slotted at 2B. Unless the Reds want to bust Valaika back down to Dayton there isn't really a 2B job open.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  4. #4
    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    The Reds have stated that the idea is to go younger on Dayton this year than years past and generally guys that hit well as 18 year olds in the GCL for the Reds go to Dayton and not to Billings. Its going to be interesting to see how things play out.... lots of people playing similar positions and all of whom deserve a chance to start. Getting it done should be a fun job for the guys in charge.

  5. #5
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    Here is a rough framework for the Red's positional depth. After yesterday's announced moves the picture clears significantly.

    There are some known issues with the chart but its a starting point:

    1. Its possible I missed someone and some spots are pretty iffy.
    2. Juan Castro won't be the AAA utility IF
    3. Todd Frazier starting out in AA is probably unlikely even if I would do that with him.
    4. Lots of questions about SS and 3B with many players but maybe not all ready for the levels where the openings are.
    5. Some players play multiple positions (Rosales, Griffin, probably FRazier, Soto and Valaika) and are listed at the spot that fits best

    Anyhow, its a start, and feel free to chime in with corrections, ommissions and disagreements.

    Code:
    Pos		Cin		AAA		AA		A+		A-		Rookie+		Rookie
    1B		Votto		A. Phillips	T. Guttierez	Parker		McKennon	Rimes	
    2B		B. Phillips	A. Green	De Jesus	Turner		Kendrick	Baker	
    SS		Gonzalez	Janish		Jo. Castro	Eymann		Cozart		Kuo		Kahaulelio
    3B		Encarnacion	Rosales		Frazier		Francisco	Waring		Soto	
    LF		Dunn		Dorn		Cumberland	Heisey		Menchaca	Pennial		Bastardo
    CF		Bruce		Dickerson	Strait		Stubbs		K. Jones	Reed		Oliveras
    RF		Griffey		Fiorentino	Henry		Holden		Maunus		M. Jones	Brown
    C		Ross		Hanigan		Tatum		Esquer		Long		Mesoraco	Denove
    													
    4OF		Hopper		Gil		Szymanski	Kainer		Phipps		G. Cabrera	R. Crosby
    U		Freel (Multi)	J.Cabrera (Mul)	Griffin (Mul)	Valaika (IF)	Bartles (3B)	Mendez (3B)	Pullen
    U		Hatteberg (1B)	Barker (1B)	Piepkorn (1B)	Meade ( C)	Louwsma (1B)	Feiner (SS)	Wideman ( C)
    IF		Keppinger	Ju. Castro	Anderson	Tordi (SS)	A. Cabrera (SS)	Gauldron	Moreta (SS)
    C		Javy		Colina		Kroski		Rodriguez	Bour		Cech		Waller
    Pretty decent list. Glad to see recognition for Dorn, whom I think might make an even larger jump than last season. One thing that is really glaring to me, is somehow, someway, Bartles and Waring need to be out from each others' shadow So we can see what we got. Any ideas?

  6. #6
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Nice list. A few quibbles:
    I doubt Justin Reed spends another year in rookie ball. I also think Soto starts in Dayton, and it's a little early for Frazier in Chattanooga. Sarasota maybe, but AA is too big of a jump for a second year player IMO. Although this has also been debated to death, I would like to see Mesoraco spend the year in Dayton. However if he does start in Billings, he better tear it up.
    Last edited by Benihana; 01-05-2008 at 02:26 PM.
    Go BLUE!!!

  7. #7
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by Benihana View Post
    Good list, although I doubt Justin Reed spends another year in rookie ball. I also think Soto starts in Dayton, and it's a little early for Frazier in Chattanooga. Sarasota maybe, but AA is too big of a jump for a second year player IMO. Although this has also been debated to death, I would like to see Mesoraco spend the year in Dayton. However if he does start in Billings, he better tear it up.
    You're probably right on all counts but the Reds need to clear some spots to make these things happen. Reed wasn't that impressive at Billings and even though its rookie ball, Billings is a clear step up from the GCL. He's still only 20 next year and many Billings level players are 21 year olds coming out of college. Same can be said of Mesoraco and the GCL. Jake Long needs to play.

    As for Frazier, the SS spot at Sarasota is filled by a non-prospect on this list, and either Frazier or Valaika could play there. I listed them with the idea that they'll be moving and the Reds pretty much indicated so with Valaika by him playing 2B in Hawaii. I'd like to see the Reds cash in on Francisco's big year by including him in a deal for pitching and open 3B for Frazier in A+.
    Last edited by mth123; 01-05-2008 at 02:42 PM.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  8. #8
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    I would think Turner could win the 2B position in AA out of ST. If he is in AA, they could let Valaika play 2B in Sarasota.

  9. #9
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by BigRed07 View Post
    I would think Turner could win the 2B position in AA out of ST. If he is in AA, they could let Valaika play 2B in Sarasota.
    I looked at that. He was a 4 year college guy who turned 23 in November, so its possible. He only had 20 ABs at Sarasota.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  10. #10
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    I looked at the stats and based my opinion on them.Turner has a good chance to be in AA competing with Anderson for the 2B job. I think Frazier will be in Sarasota splitting time at SS (w/Valaika) and 3B (w/Francisco). This will also allow Valaika to log plenty of innings at 2B. Soto should be in Dayton and split time with Cozart. Cozart was moved to 2B last year in Dayton when Frazier was moved up. It should be very competitive in ST this year. We just have to wait and see where everyone ends up when the dust settles.


    Code:
    DeJesus
    
    Team	League	AVG	G	AB	R	H	2B	3B	HR	RBI	TB	BB	SO	SB	CS	OBP	SLG	OPS
    SAR	FSL	.261	113	417	76	109	12	2	4	29	137	78	52	4	6	.380	.329	.709
    Minors		.261	113	417	76	109	12	2	4	29	137	78	52	4	6	.380	.329	.709
    
    Turner
    
    Team	League	AVG	G	AB	R	H	2B	3B	HR	RBI	TB	BB	SO	SB	CS	OBP	SLG	OPS
    DAY	MID	.311	117	466	70	145	25	4	10	59	208	39	72	12	8	.374	.446	.820
    SAR	FSL	.200	6	20	2	4	0	0	0	0	4	1	2	0	0	.238	.200	.438
    Minors		.307	123	486	72	149	25	4	10	59	212	40	74	12	8	.369	.436	.805

  11. #11
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Excellent breakout, thanks mth.

    At first glance, I'd tweak a little like this...

    No way Josh Holden starts over Kainer, or Maunus over Phipps. Frazier won't be at AA. Juan Castro won't be riding pine in Louisville (I think Drew Anderson will be a utility guy there, or starting at 2B). I'm guessing Bruce starts at AAA and Dorn at AA. I don't think Tony Brown repeats the GCL.
    "Baseball is a very, very complex business. It's more of a people business than most businesses." - Bob Castellini

  12. #12
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Some thoughts on ideas put forth in the last few posts:

    Valaika in AA. Valaika tanked bad in Sarasota to the tune of .253/.310/.332/.642 in 236 PA. He followed that with .269/.319/.398/.717 in 115 PA in the Hawaiin Winter League. No way he goes to AA after that. He's more likely to go back down to Dayton to get straightened out IMO.

    The OF in both A and A+ isn't especially exciting. Kainer and Holden are both non-prospects IMO though at second glance I agree that Kainer should be in front of Holden. Holden will be 27 next season and is still struggling in the low minors. Looks like we've found the guy to move out to make room. Kyle Maunus (.809 OPS in 209 PA at Billings) looks more promising than Denis Phipps (.651 OPS in 500+ PA at Dayton). This leads to a realization that the 3B crowd of Frazier, Francisco, Waring, Soto and Bartles probably needs to have a guy or two land in the OF. I've resisted that notion in the chart because these go from exciting bats as IF to ho-hum bats as Corner OF. But it would solve the problems of where to play all these guys and they may have enough pop to get by even in a corner OF slot. I'm not sure, but I wonder if a guy like Soto could even handle center eventually. As far as Frazier to AA being too big a jump, I agree mostly, but good hitters who spent 3 years crushing NCAA pitching like Frazier did at Rutgers sometimes debut at AA. I really don't think its that much of a reach. The Reds probably won't jump him that far though. Bowden might have, but Krivsky probably not.

    Danny Dorn only had 108 PAs at AA and the suggestion that he start back there is probably accurate. I'm generally a "challenge thy hitters" type and there seems to be an opening in the AAA OF unless Bruce stays there. I think the Hamilton deal is an indication that Bruce starts in CF in Cincy unless he completely tanks in Spring.

    I think its a toss-up between Brown and Pennial at Billings and the GCL. Pennial went straight to Billings and Brown will probably be with him with a draftee playing in the GCL.

    I don't agree that Adam Rosales will play at 1B or stay at AA. Rosales bat becomes a real plus at 3B as opposed to somewhat pedestrian at 1B. He started out as a SS and can probably handle 3B defensively. He was only biding time at 1B to take stress off of an injured arm that required the 2007 season to heal. Finally, if the Reds intend for Rosales to play 1B in 2008, they sure don't act like it. Rosales was playing other spots in Arizona and since the end of the year the Reds re-signed Tonys Guttierrez who looks slotted for AA 1B and Jeremiah Piepkorn looks like he may be ready to jump to AA as well. At AAA the Reds signed Andy Phillips and Kevin Barker both 1B. It's possible that Rosales plays 3B in AA I guess since we probably agree that it won't be Frazier. But, Rosales is 25 in May, and went .278/.377/.549/.926 in 297 AA PA in 2007. That looks like a guy ready to move up to me and there really isn't anyone to play 3B at AAA as currently situated unless Jerry Gil plays there. I like Rosales quite a bit as a prospect and think he could be a plus player in a Freel type role.

    Good discussion.
    Last edited by mth123; 01-05-2008 at 10:06 PM.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS

  13. #13
    BobC, get a legit F.O.! Mario-Rijo's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    ..........




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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    I don't agree that Adam Rosales will play at 1B or stay at AA. Rosales bat becomes a real plus at 3B as opposed to somewhat pedestrian at 1B. He started out as a SS and can probably handle 3B defensively. He was only biding time at 1B to take stress off of an injured arm that required the 2007 season to heal. Finally, if the Reds intend for Rosales to play 1B in 2008, they sure don't act like it. Rosales was playing other spots in Arizona and since the end of the year the Reds re-signed Tonys Guttierrez who looks slotted for AA 1B and Jeremiah Piepkorn looks like he may be ready to jump to AA as well. At AAA the Reds signed Andy Phillips and Kevin Barker both 1B. It's possible that Rosales plays 3B in AA I guess since we probably agree that it won't be Frazier. But, Rosales is 25 in May, and went .278/.377/.549/.926 in 297 AA PA in 2007. That looks like a guy ready to move up to me and there really isn't anyone to play 3B at AAA as currently situated unless Jerry Gil plays there. I like Rosales quite a bit as a prospect and think he could be a plus player in a Freel type role.

    Good discussion.
    After reading your informed take on Rosales' time at 1B, I have changed my perception of Rosales' position switch to 1b being a somewhat permanent one.
    The Reds organization does need more viable 1B prospects - after Votto, who is there?
    Rosales would project well as a utilityman.

    Your chart was thoughtfully put together and obviously interesting to read and think about. I appreciate the time you put into it.

  15. #15
    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Positional Depth 2008

    Quote Originally Posted by Betterread View Post
    After reading your informed take on Rosales' time at 1B, I have changed my perception of Rosales' position switch to 1b being a somewhat permanent one.
    The Reds organization does need more viable 1B prospects - after Votto, who is there?
    Rosales would project well as a utilityman.

    Your chart was thoughtfully put together and obviously interesting to read and think about. I appreciate the time you put into it.
    Thanks. I just do it for kicks and there are lots of ways things could shake out. In all probabilty the Reds will sign another journeyman or two to fill some upper level thin spots and force more competition for spots at lower levels. Some guys on this chart (I vote Szymanksi , Holden and maybe Strait and Janish) may be gone before the season starts and the lower levels will probably be filled in by some yet undrafted draftees or unsigned international players. A trade for a major league pitcher may rob some depth and change the picture as well.

    I agree that 1B and also the OF look kind of weak at lower levels. I'm guessing the whole Waring, Bartles, Frazier, Francicso and Soto logjam may address those issues. It just concerns me that they'll take a value hit in those positions. Michael McKennon (.833 OPS with a .503 Slug &#37 may be a guy to watch at 1B. A good year at Dayton will at least put him in the conversation. He looks to have some pop and just needs to refine his plate discipline to raise that OBP.

    I'm kind of hoping for an Aaron Boone type value out of Rosales. He won't be a star but could be a solid contributor while he's cheap.
    Last edited by mth123; 01-06-2008 at 10:53 AM.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

    Having better players makes "the right time" or "the big hit" happen a lot more often. PLUS PLUS


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