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Thread: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

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    Member Spring~Fields's Avatar
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    Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Reds By The Numbers
    Numbers say Dunn, Griffey should go
    BY JOHN ERARDI

    Seven straight losing seasons and a bad start have made Ken Griffey Jr. and Adam Dunn lightning rods with Reds fans, most of whom want them gone - regardless of what can be had in return. The numbers so far are with the fans.

    Here is how the Reds position players rank in OPS (on base percentage plus slugging percentage) among the position players of the 16 teams in the National League:

    C - 6th (Paul Bako will revert to the back of his bubblegum card soon enough; for now, he's Ernie Lombardi).


    1B - 6th (Lower than we'd have thought, but Albert Pujols, Lance Berkman and Derrek Lee are a tough crowd).

    2B - 6th (Brandon Phillips still isn't good at getting on base, but he can really slug it).

    SS - 5th (Oh, are the Reds ever going to miss Jeff Keppinger ).

    3B - 6th (Edwin Encarnacion still has the most upside of any Reds hitter).

    LF - 9th (Earlier this week, Dunn got some talk-show points for hitting a sacrifice-fly on a pitch outside the zone, but it's going to take a lot more than that).

    CF - 8th (Thanks to Ryan Freel ).

    RF - 14th (Ken Griffey Jr. figures to move up in the rankings - he always "comes around" - but FIRST let him get hot, THEN move him into the 3-hole).

    Pinch-hitters - 12th.

    Not just cattle need range: Last year, Griffey Jr. got to nine FEWER fly-ball outs than the average major league right-fielder based on his chances. This year, he's already about five below average (second-worst among all MLB right fielders) and there's still three-fourths of the season to go.

    Dunn's range is improving, 1.5 fewer fly-ball outs; making him 20th of 28 left fielders with more than 150 innings; last year, he got to 15 fewer fly balls than his fellow left fielders.

    SO, WHAT TO DO

    The Reds should be entertaining all offers for Griffey - even before he hits his 600th home run. With Jay Bruce tearing up Triple-A, the Reds have plenty of firepower to replace Griffey. It will be bittersweet to see him hit "600" elsewhere, but turning around this franchise will take some tough decisions from management. What better time to start making them than now?

    CALLING BRANCH RICKEY

    Reds management lacks the requisite ruthlessness to deal aging veterans to make room for younger players. Take a page from former Reds general manager Bob Howsam who was all for putting fans in the seats, but knew the best way to draw is through winning - and traded Tony Perez, 36, after the Reds title in 1976 to make room for Dan Driessen.

    DUNN OR PHILLIPS?

    With men on base, Dunn has 22 fewer plate appearances than Phillips, is hitting 86 points lower, slugging 52 points lower, and has the same number of HRs (3) - yet has 1 more RBI in those situations ... Is Dunn a witch?

    SPEAKING OF BRUCE

    Jay Bruce still isn't close to the on-base average of plus-65 points over batting average the Reds want ... but he's edging up.

    With his .366 batting average, .398 on-base average and .662 slugging percentage, Bruce will be here within a few weeks, when he won't trigger an early arbitration date and cost the Reds millions more.

    Still, there there isn't a "Bruce" alive or dead - not Lenny, not Willis and not Hornsby (unless it's Rogers) - who can put this moribund Reds offense over the top. The Reds are 12th in the NL in runs scored.

    PUT PHILLIPS AT SS

    The numbers don't support concerns that the Reds would be weakened at shortstop AND second base by moving Phillips. In the minors he played 356 games at SS (.950 fielding percentage), compared to Jerry Hairston's 34 (.921) - and Hairston doesn't have a shortstop's arm. Going into this season, Phillips had played five big league games at SS, Hairston six. Why are the Reds using a lesser fielder at arguably the most important defensive position?

    The average 2B who moves to SS makes about six fewer plays per year than the average SS. But Phillips made about 15 MORE plays last year than the average 2B (among the NL's best), so at worst he figures to be average at SS. The Reds need the offense with Phillips at SS and Freel at 2B, when he's not in the outfield.

    EASY DOES IT, BIG FELLA

    Phillips THINKS he can hit anything, but the numbers say no. He swings at 33 percent of the pitches he sees that are out of the strike zone. That's the 13th highest rate in the bigs.

    Swinging at pitches out of the zone isn't all bad. But No. 1 bad-baller Vlad Guerrero makes contact on 66 percent of those pitches; Phillips makes contact on 47.

    Even a bad-ball hitter has to be realistic about just how bad a ball he can put a crushing on.

    FLY INTO THE DANGER ZONE

    Johnny Cueto is getting killed on pitches up in the zone - hitters have a .667 slugging percentage against him there (compared to a .394 slugging percentage down). We agree with Dusty Baker that Cueto should let the catcher call the game and focus on putting his stuff where not even the best big leaguers can hit it.

    KEEP HOPE ALIVE

    Did you know that even though Bronson Arroyo 's ERA is 6.08, his strikeout rate (8 K's per nine innings) is well above his career norms (6.2/9)? His ground ball rate is almost exactly where it was last year. His walk rate is up a bit this year, but not enough to explain his struggles.

    So what gives? This year, batters have a .342 adjusted batting average against Arroyo on balls in play, compared to a .285 average the previous three years. And why are hitters batting 57 points higher? Probably just bad luck. Pitchers have very little control over batting average on balls in play. Hang with Arroyo; he'll turn it around.

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  3. #2
    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Thanks for posting. Once again, Erardi does a great job.

    I just have to wonder how much better this team would be if Bruce was playing RF all year long instead of JR. Or, how much better they'd be if JR was batting 6th where he belongs right now. Would they be over .500 with either?
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

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    Member Spring~Fields's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by Redhook View Post
    Thanks for posting. Once again, Erardi does a great job.

    I just have to wonder how much better this team would be if Bruce was playing RF all year long instead of JR. Or, how much better they'd be if JR was batting 6th where he belongs right now. Would they be over .500 with either?
    I wonder the same things or similiar type ponderings. I do think that Bruce could have helped the team by playing center offensively and defensively, and by taking up some playing time in left and right during players days off etc. until management makes their Griffey decisions. I don't think that Bruce would have caused much damage in CF and that he would have gained valuable experience that would pay dividends next year. I am all for Griffey sitting against left handed pitching, batting down in the order over hitting in the three or two slot and having additional days off to rest at his age, it would not be good if he were to suffer another injury at this stage in his career from stressing his body too much or a mishap in the outfield.

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    Start the Reactor! *BaseClogger*'s Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    At this point, Bruce is three to five wins better than Griffey IMO...
    "On-base percentage is great if you can score runs and do something with that on-base percentage," Baker said. "Clogging up the bases isn't that great to me."

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    Miami Redhawks Redhook's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Additionally, how much of a draw is JR anymore? Does the average fan still want to pay money to see him? I'm guessing many do, but it has to be fading fast. And by looking at the Reds attendance figures the Reds need something shiny and new to draw some interest. Personally, I wouldn't pay to watch JR anymore, but as soon as Bruce gets called up I'll be going straight down to the ballpark. I can't wait to him in a Reds uni.
    "....the two players I liked watching the most were Barry Larkin and Eric Davis. I was suitably entertained by their effortless skill that I didn't need them crashing into walls like a squirrel on a coke binge." - dsmith421

    www.kylevoska.com - Golfer? Check out my blog for golf tips.

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    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by *BaseClogger* View Post
    At this point, Bruce is three to five wins better than Griffey IMO...
    Plus the indirect effect that he'll have on the entire staff not being overworked by the automatic single playing RF.
    "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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    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by SpringfieldFan View Post
    With men on base, Dunn has 22 fewer plate appearances than Phillips, is hitting 86 points lower, slugging 52 points lower, and has the same number of HRs (3) - yet has 1 more RBI in those situations ... Is Dunn a witch?
    That's got to be a misprint. there's just no way that could ever happen.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David

  9. #8
    Haunted by walks
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    So why are the Reds going all SABR on Jay Bruce, even with a stat like OBP/BA, when they haven't shown an inclination to do so before?

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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    I just wanted to point out one reason, not just the walks, that Bruce's OBP is closer to his AVG..... Marty Brennamen is excited, Bruce had 5 sac flies this year. Those aren't at bats, but are plate appearances, so it draws his two numbers closer. Without them, it puts his numbers 12 points further apart.

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    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by BCubb2003 View Post
    So why are the Reds going all SABR on Jay Bruce, even with a stat like OBP/BA, when they haven't shown an inclination to do so before?
    Have to make up excuses for bowing to#600 and Dusty's buddy in CF. Its convenient when it fits the agenda. Maybe the Reds brass post at Redszone.
    "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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    Member Crosley68's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Pure and simple....Reds are avoiding early arbitration for Bruce. Sad but true.
    Let's play two!!!

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    The Boss dougdirt's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by Crosley68 View Post
    Pure and simple....Reds are avoiding early arbitration for Bruce. Sad but true.
    They have avoided arbitration already, they are trying to avoid him becoming a Super 2.

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    Moderator RedlegJake's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Dunn in left, Patterson in CF and Bruce in right, Votto at first, Freel at 2nd, Phillips at SS, EE at third and Bako catching. Hairston IF/OF sub and Janish IF sub, Andy Phillips 1B sub, Hopper OF sub, Ross C sub. Junior, Valentin and Hatteberg gone.

    Dunn in left, Bruce in CF, Junior in RF, Votto at first, Freel at 2nd, Phillips at SS, EE at third and Bako catching. Hairston IF/OF sub and Janish IF sub, Andy Phillips 1B sub, Patterson OF sub, Ross C sub. Hopper, Valentin and Hatteberg gone.

    Either way OBP improves, Power improves, defense improves, speed improves, bench improves. In the second case Junior can sit more often and Bruce can take RF with CP in CF. Either way Hairston can sub out Freel at 2B every few games, Janish can slide into SS late and Phillips move back to 2nd and Phillips gives you a RH bat to sub w/Votto against tough lefties or to PH.

    The one thing that is certain is that this team can be improved immediately if the FO wants to make some tough decisions. They can get Bruce up with plenty of playing time. They can get a RH bat for the bench from Louisville in Phillips. Even if they can't move Junior they can still make moves that get better fitting players on the team.

    If ruthlessness is what you want to call it then it's ruthless but if Cast sincerely wants to win Valentin and Hatteberg go away - PTBNL or DFA. Jay Bruce in the OF and Andy Phillips on the bench improve this team -and I think by a fairly large measure.

    Then carry the same thinking to pitching and move Fogg, slot Belisle to the pen as long reliever and spot starter, and bring up Bailey for the 5 spot. Or Lehr if you really want Bailey at AAA for awhile longer.

    DFA Mike Lincoln and see if Maj has turned it around. I'm tempted to say Roenicke but I don't think he's really ready yet. Ruthless? Heck yes, I'd go through Fogg, Belisle, Adkins, Lincoln, Majewski, Coffey, and others and trade or cut the ones that don't fit/aren't improving/aren't part of tomorrow's team and find an appropriate role for the ones remaining.

    I'm not talking trades or deals here, at least any that bring substantial return, just things that can be done now, right now, that would improve this team from the players it has right now. THEN, with the deadwood cleared away they begin looking outside the organization for trades and moves to really improve.

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    Quote Originally Posted by SpringfieldFan View Post
    Is Dunn a witch?

    One way to find out is to see if he floats.
    The Rally Onion wants 150 fans before Opening Day.

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/Rally-...24872650873160

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    Member membengal's Avatar
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    Re: Reds By The Numbers -JOHN ERARDI

    John Erardi is a light summer morning breeze as you sit out on your porch and contemplate a day of doing nothing.

    Very refreshing.


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