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Thread: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

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    Member Spring~Fields's Avatar
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    John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Another winter or two away
    Reds insider
    By John Fay

    Right now would be the perfect time for the Reds to ask for patience. You know, the we're-going-to-get-this-right-but-it's-going-to-take-time speech.

    General manager Walt Jocketty didn't take that tack Saturday. When asked if what ails the Reds could be corrected in one offseason, Jocketty said: "I hope so. I don't think we're that far away. ... We thought we had a chance to finish strong."

    A strong finish doesn't look remotely possible given the way the Reds are playing right now. Going into Saturday's game, they had lost 12 of 14.

    So though it would seem like a good time to sit back and take the long view, the Reds have made it pretty clear since Bob Castellini took over that the club was going to go for the quick fix. The Reds have tried to do this while infusing young talent at the same time.

    A lot of fans would like to see the Reds go all the way with the youth movement. That works as a concept, but the Reds don't have the talent in Triple-A to do that.

    But Jocketty will certainly have the chance to reshape the roster this offseason. One thing Jocketty has in common with Wayne Krivsky is he doesn't tip his hand as to what he's going to do.

    So far, Jocketty's been remarkably patient. The one thing we know is he didn't want Ken Griffey Jr. back at $16 million for next year, so he traded Griffey.

    That's the only significant move he's made.

    The offseason - and the rest of this season - won't be as quiet.
    The Reds have 12 potential free agents on the roster.

    Jocketty said Saturday that the club has not spoken to agents for any of those players about coming back.

    The guess here is only a handful will be back. Mike Lincoln and Jerry Hairston Jr. probably. David Weathers maybe. Jeremy Affeldt possibly.

    As for Adam Dunn, Jocketty remains noncommittal.
    "No decision's been made," he said.
    My guess is Dunn won't be back.

    But that leads to the question about Dunn specifically and the free agents in general: Who do you replace them with?

    "The big thing is who's available," Jocketty said. "The free agent class is not real strong. You've got to look at what you can do with trades."
    One thing Jocketty won't do, he said, is trade young players.
    "That kind of defeats the purpose of what we're trying to do," he said.

    Here's what I see as the glaring needs of the team this offseason:
    A frontline catcher: All three Reds catchers are free agents. The club has an option on David Ross. Ryan Hanigan had a very good year in Triple-A. He'll probably be the No. 2 guy next year. "Catching is extremely hard to obtain," Jocketty said.

    Center field/leadoff: Hairston has been very good in that role. But he has trouble staying healthy. Ryan Freel is also under contract, so the Reds may hope that between Freel and Hairston they'll have the spot covered.

    Shortstop: Alex Gonzalez is Plan A. But Jocketty admits you've got to have a Plan B, given Gonzalez's injury. "The medical reports are good," Jocketty said. "But you've got to play both ways. You can't count on him and then be stuck if he's not ready." Jeff Keppinger's a good backup plan. But if he's going to be your everyday guy, doesn't it make sense to put Brandon Phillips there?

    A corner outfielder/big bat: This is assuming Dunn won't be back. Replacing Dunn's production won't be easy. Take 40 home runs, 100 RBI, 100 runs and 100 walks out of this lineup, and it's average, at best. As Jocketty mentioned, the free agent market is underwhelming.

    There are other needs as well, of course. If the bullpen loses Weathers and Affeldt to free agency, they'll have to be replaced. The young starters - Edinson Volquez, Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey and Daryl Thompson - have to continue to develop. The same can be said of outfielder Jay Bruce and first baseman Joey Votto.

    A lot has to go right for this team to win in 2009.

    Jocketty's record says he knows how to build a winner. He's watched this team on this abysmal streak. Still, he's convinced it can be fixed in one offseason. At the very least, you've got to credit him for optimism.

    http://news.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs...808100436/1071

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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Planning to have Jerry Hairston Jr and Ryan Freel as our CF scares me in a big way.

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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by Rounding Third View Post
    Planning to have Jerry Hairston Jr and Ryan Freel as our CF scares me in a big way.
    Just keep the bench warm for when they're both on the DL.
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    Greatness In The Making RedLegSuperStar's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    A lot does have to go right for this team to be competitive next year. Especially if Dunn isn't in the picture. Can Harang go back to form? Which Bronson will we see; pre All-Star or post? Can Encarnacion and Votto cut down on their errors? Who plays Center Field, Catcher, and if Dunn isn't back; then LF? Is Homer Bailey truley a future star; or bust? Does Dusty produce the winner or is it his players?
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    Greatness In The Making RedLegSuperStar's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by Rounding Third View Post
    Planning to have Jerry Hairston Jr and Ryan Freel as our CF scares me in a big way.
    Yeah, but no mention of Chris Dickerson who will be 27 next year and has been a career minor leaguer. I think he deserves an oppertunity over Patterson this season and over Hopper, Freel, and Hairston next season.
    "I could watch video of Griffey swinging all day. It's like baseball porn." - C. Trent Rosecrans


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    Baseball card addict MrCinatit's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by Rounding Third View Post
    Planning to have Jerry Hairston Jr and Ryan Freel as our CF scares me in a big way.
    Same here. Both will be 33 and this year, they have played a combined 36 games in center.
    Only a couple of years away. Hm. Yeah. Heard that before. The Reds are starting to remind me a bit of Van Halen - the lead singer keeps changing, but the tunes are still the same. But instead of Eddie on lead guitar, we have Reggie (Baker) from The Archies.

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    Box of Frogs edabbs44's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    I had a lot of hope for Jocketty.

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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    The Hairston/Freel in CF suggestion was Fay's, not Jocketty's. I don't think Walt will be content with that duo.
    "The players make the manager, it's never the other way." - Sparky Anderson

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    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    This team has been a winter or two away for the past 10 years.
    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

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    High five! nate's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    I thought by the title it meant that John Fay was another winter or two away from busting out of his writing slump.
    "Bring on Rod Stupid!"

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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    General manager Walt Jocketty didn't take that tack Saturday. When asked if what ails the Reds could be corrected in one offseason, Jocketty said: "I hope so. I don't think we're that far away. The free agent class is not real strong. You've got to look at what you can do with trades."
    One thing Jocketty won't do, he said, is trade young players.
    "That kind of defeats the purpose of what we're trying to do," he said.


    I agree with all of that.

    1.don't trade the young current major leaguers.
    2. I don't think we're that far away.
    3. focus on trades

    number 3's the big unknown. What's out there? does anyone like what we've got to trade?

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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by nate View Post
    I thought by the title it meant that John Fay was another winter or two away from busting out of his writing slump.

    You actually have to be good first in order to be in a slump. It's like saying Juan Castro's slumping.
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    I don't think we will recognize this team next year, except for the unis. No matter what Walt says, I expect a heavy makeover. Young guys from AAA and new guys in trades.

    The Griffey trade and Ross DFA are just the start.

    This off season could be much more exciting than the actual season has been, although that doesn't say very much.

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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by edabbs44 View Post
    I had a lot of hope for Jocketty.
    Actions speak louder than words. Let's see what moves he makes before annointing him a lost cause.

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    The Big Dog mth123's Avatar
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    Re: John Fay, Another Winter Or Two Away

    Quote Originally Posted by Austin Kearns View Post
    Actions speak louder than words. Let's see what moves he makes before annointing him a lost cause.
    He made a good one today.
    "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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