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Thread: The Offense

  1. #1
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    The Offense

    Is it the problem?

    First things first. We're at the halfway point in the season for all intents and purposes. I've heard a lot of people say offense is down and that this is the year of the pitcher. I'm not sure if that will hold with the summer heat, we may start to see these offensive numbers go up further.

    Let's compare this year to 2010, when the Reds made the playoffs. This Reds offense is on pace for about 25 wins above replacement in 2012. To give some perspective, the 2010 team was worth 40 wins above replacement, tops in all of baseball. The Cardinals and Rangers, who are the top offensive teams in the league are on pace for 36 wins as a team as of now. In 2010, the Brewers had the 2nd highest team offensive WAR with 33.2. So maybe the 2010 Reds offense was an anomaly. No matter what you think, this offense is in bad shape, when compared to the 2010 Reds offense or the 2012 Cardinals.

    The pitching has been better so far. In 2010, the Reds pitching staff was worth 15 wins above replacement. This year, the staff is on pace for about 18 wins above replacement. That's a 3 win improvement. That's obviously a positive. However, can the staff maintain this pace into the summer with warmer temperatures? And with half the games in GAB no less?

    The problem is, if all things were to stay equal, the Reds have gained 3 wins in the pitching column and are on pace to lose 15 games on the offensive side. That's a net loss of -12 from 2010 and that team only won 91 games. If there is any silver lining, it's that I think the offense will improve some, even if no changes are to be made to the current team. With that said, I see zero chance that the offense will make up the 12 wins difference that they had in 2010. I don't even think trades could help make up 12 wins, unless we suddenly land David Wright from the Mets.

    To take a closer look at the offense, I think it can mostly be explained by the fact that Rolen had a great year (or at least great 1st half) and Bruce/Stubbs had career years in 2010. Stubbs was a 4 win player that year and Bruce was 5.5. Stubbs is on pace for 1 win this year and Bruce is on pace for 3 wins. Frazier is on pace for about 3 wins this year. If you compare that to Rolen's 2010, he's 2 wins less. That's a 7.5 wins above replacement difference alone.

    In addition, Hernandez's production was much better than Mez' has been thus far. Hanigan is on pace for a similar number of wins himself compared to 2010, but since he's likely to get more PAs this year, there is decline there too. Mez is likely to improve, but it's not likely to be worth multiple wins more, given his playing time.

    Phillips is on a similar pace to 2010, but a little better this year. LF with Ludwick, despite his slow start, has been an improvement over what Gomes was. Cozart is a decent improvement over Cabrera from 2010. Votto is probably the only player that is having a significantly better 2012 than his 2010 (we're talking about 2.5 wins above replacement difference compared to 2010). But that alone won't make up the difference from the 2010 season.

    There are other smaller factors to account for, like bench players, but those are minimal differences from the 2010 team. Basically, the Reds offense is in rough shape, whether you compare it to the winning team in 2010 or with the Cardinals in 2012. The good news is that the Cardinals pitching has been much worse this year. The Pirates are a bit of an enigma because both their pitching and offense have been somewhat middle of the road in terms of wins above replacement, but they're actually not too far behind the Reds in pitching or offense. Even though they have been red hot, they are likely to regress some.

    Am I going wrong here?
    Last edited by fearofpopvol1; 07-05-2012 at 12:02 AM.

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  3. #2
    Viva la Rolen kaldaniels's Avatar
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    Re: The Offense

    It's all about relativity to me.

    The Reds are 3rd in the NL in pitchers WAR, and 6th in position players WAR. All in all, a good place to be.

    Are you worried about the Pirates, cause they are 11th and 14th in those respective categories.

    And we are only halfway home...I would argue that the WAR rankings will look somewhat different at the end of the season.

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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by kaldaniels View Post
    It's all about relativity to me.

    The Reds are 3rd in the NL in pitchers WAR, and 6th in position players WAR. All in all, a good place to be.

    Are you worried about the Pirates, cause they are 11th and 14th in those respective categories.

    And we are only halfway home...I would argue that the WAR rankings will look somewhat different at the end of the season.
    I wasn't worried about the Pirates offense until recently. Just a week ago, their pythag was negative. Now, they're +18. They're obviously not as good as the Reds (as of now), but they've made tremendous headway as of late.

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    Member paulrichjr's Avatar
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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by fearofpopvol1 View Post
    I wasn't worried about the Pirates offense until recently. Just a week ago, their pythag was negative. Now, they're +18. They're obviously not as good as the Reds (as of now), but they've made tremendous headway as of late.
    But they are also playing the Astros which should help their pythag. It seems like we have been playing a lot of good teams lately while they have not....besides the Cardinals.
    Tim McCarver: Baseball Quotes
    I remember one time going out to the mound to talk with Bob Gibson. He told me to get back behind the batter, that the only thing I knew about pitching was that it was hard to hit.

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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by paulrichjr View Post
    But they are also playing the Astros which should help their pythag. It seems like we have been playing a lot of good teams lately while they have not....besides the Cardinals.
    The game on Monday against the Astros helped their pythag, but last night and tonight, the games were very close. Don't forget, the Pirates pummeled the Cards 14-5 during 1 of their games.

  7. #6
    "So Fla Red"
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    Re: The Offense

    ... is now 11th in the NL in OPS vs. RHP and 11th in the NL in road OPS. Simply a below average offense and that's with a superstar.

    I'd shudder to think what the Reds OPS is against RHP on the road.

  8. #7
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    Re: The Offense

    I'm not really seeing a playoff team here right now as currently constructed. I certainly don't see a division winner, even with the improved pitching.

    I know I keep making comparisons to 2010, but every game the Reds played, no matter who it was, I always felt like they had a good chance to win. No matter how large or small the lead was. They had lots of comeback wins, they played well in 1-run games and they had offensive firepower. The offense fired on all cylinders. This year, not much at all outside of Votto and Phillips (whose not even a true cleanup hitter).

    The Reds teased us with that 6 game winning streak, but as of late, they've had trouble winning anything. In fact, since the 6 game winning streak, the Reds have lost or split every series except for the against the Brewers.

    I just don't feel the magic in the air that was around in 2010.

  9. #8
    "So Fla Red"
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    Re: The Offense

    Reds led the NL against RHP OPS in 2010 at .772. This year they are 11th at .710.

    Overall pitching is much better in 2012. I'd take this staff hands down over the 2010 edition.

    With a few offensive moves in July this team is better than the 2010 edition on paper.

    Baseball is funny. We had all the mojo until the Mistake on the Lake series. Now they'd be lucky to split with a AAA team. Which we'll get to see first hand the next four days.

  10. #9
    Flash the leather! _Sir_Charles_'s Avatar
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    Re: The Offense

    If you're referring to the Padres as the AAA club, you might want to note that they've won 5 in a row now and are playing VERY good ball now that Grandal has come up. Already with 4 taters in just 6 games.
    2014 predictions:
    99-63 WS champs (Cards take 2nd WC, Mil 3rd, Pit 4th, Chi 5th)
    Bruce/Votto neck and neck MVP race (neither takes it)
    Bailey CYA winner
    Hamilton ROY & GG

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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by fearofpopvol1 View Post
    I just don't feel the magic in the air that was around in 2010.
    Ups and downs of the season. Don't forget, the Reds are playing against other major league clubs who are at about the same level of skill. It's difficult to win every game.
    Sabermetrics is this: A batter's goal is to extend the inning. Extend enough innings and you're going to score runs. Extend more innings than your opponent and you're going to score more runs than him.

    Forget the rain. It's never an official game until the Reds piss away a run between third base and home plate. - Bluegrass Redleg

  12. #11
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    Re: The Offense

    Let me say this about the offense. The offense as currently constructed, or the way it currently is run, is conducive to winning games against teams that play in big parks, or pitching that doesn't give up a lot of home runs. This is definitely a team that plays for the long ball. And that's great in GAB, but they don't tailor the offense to play small ball, run more, steal more bases, etc, in bigger parks. They still try to out-slug everyone. And so you get what you got in LA and SF this week.

    I really wonder if obtaining BOTH a player with pop who can hit cleanup and play LF in those games where we can out-slug the other team, as well as a player who can play LF and bat leadoff or 2nd in those games the Reds play in bigger parks and against tougher pitchers that don't give up the long-ball.

    But this is reliant on the manager being flexible with his personnel, and changing strategies based on opposition conditions. And I really wonder if that's a possibility.
    Sabermetrics is this: A batter's goal is to extend the inning. Extend enough innings and you're going to score runs. Extend more innings than your opponent and you're going to score more runs than him.

    Forget the rain. It's never an official game until the Reds piss away a run between third base and home plate. - Bluegrass Redleg

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    Re: The Offense

    this is just my opinion so dont beat me up....but I think when you start getting into wins and losses as a TEAM, not individual stuff, but as a TEAM, its just so hard to use stats to back up a argument and hold water....Sure you can use a stat to tell how a batter or pitcher is doing against other players but when you are talking about a team as a whole, to many other factors are involved where numbers just cannot be used.....

    I know its a good stepping stone and a good start to compare all these teams to each other using certain stats and numbers like WAR and the pythag but I have tried to many times to make sense of how a team is doing by using these same categories and it never amounts to squat.....Like you said, just last week the Pirates were negative, now they are a game in first by themselves.....I like to use the numbers at seasons end and see how they compare.....

    again, its just a opinion and I, like many of you, will continue to crunch numbers every night to find a comparison to why we are winning or losing, I probably will never stop using stats to gauge my opinion on whether or not I like a certain team. I like to gamble so stats help me make my choices each night, but they rarely ever help me pick a true winner on a positive basis. Just a thought

  14. #13
    Member jhu1321's Avatar
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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan View Post
    Let me say this about the offense. The offense as currently constructed, or the way it currently is run, is conducive to winning games against teams that play in big parks, or pitching that doesn't give up a lot of home runs. This is definitely a team that plays for the long ball. And that's great in GAB, but they don't tailor the offense to play small ball, run more, steal more bases, etc, in bigger parks. They still try to out-slug everyone. And so you get what you got in LA and SF this week.

    I really wonder if obtaining BOTH a player with pop who can hit cleanup and play LF in those games where we can out-slug the other team, as well as a player who can play LF and bat leadoff or 2nd in those games the Reds play in bigger parks and against tougher pitchers that don't give up the long-ball.

    But this is reliant on the manager being flexible with his personnel, and changing strategies based on opposition conditions. And I really wonder if that's a possibility.
    This is spot on. For the most part, we can't manufacture a run for anything. I almost cringe when we get a baserunner with nobody out (unless Votto happens to be up next........ which doesn't happen bc Stubbs hasn't been on base for 28 PA's). It's almost certain that the runner will get stranded as we whiff away for the next three batters. We have consistent pop throughout the lineup but that doesn't do much good on the West Coast.

    I don't see us being able to obtain a slugging LF and a high OBP guy at the deadline. We simply don't have the prospects or payroll space to accommodate. Possible trade candidates on the major league roster:

    Stubbs or Heisey
    Frazier (please no)
    A bullpen arm (assuming Masset is actually coming back)
    Uhh.....


    .... couple that with very few high level prospects and I think you're stuck with what you've got.

  15. #14
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    Re: The Offense

    We could get one hitter....from Chicago on the northside....and they'd pay his salary. Wheeeew. But don;t think Walt isn't thinking on it....

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    Re: The Offense

    Quote Originally Posted by RedlegJake View Post
    We could get one hitter....from Chicago on the northside....and they'd pay his salary. Wheeeew. But don;t think Walt isn't thinking on it....
    Three run homer for Aldolpho Soriano!
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