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Thread: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

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    I'm gettin paper Homer Bailey's Avatar
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    Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...riches-problem

    Still, Baker can change, and solving the lineup problem would be a great place to start. It's easy to point to the Reds' record and declare that everything's working. But it's also worth considering the possibility that they're winning in spite of the configuration of their starting nine, not because of it. In baseball, trusting a bad process to keep delivering good results has a way of biting you in the ass.
    This article is incredibly spot on, and a great read.

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    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    This isn't about a stat-head vendetta against Baker either. Throughout his managerial career, he's built a reputation for overusing starting pitchers and favoring veterans over young players. He's also got Chapman pitching 80 innings a year of short relief when he could be throwing 200 as a starter. But Baker's gotten better about pitch counts and common sense for starters.
    So no vendetta?

    Sure sounds like a vendetta. The article would've been much better if it stuck to the original scope.. Stubbs/Cozart's low OBP and what to do with Frasier.
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Which means it's imperative that your best hitters bat as high in the order as possible.
    "Since I've been with the Reds in 1989, we've never had a farm system this loaded," Bowden said. "If we were the New York Yankees and had unlimited dollars, we could have traded for Colon, (Jeff) Weaver, Rolen, (Cliff) Floyd, (Kenny) Rogers and Finley and gotten them all -- and still held onto our top five prospects. That's an amazing statement."

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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Good find - I, too, think that's spot on.

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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Quote Originally Posted by REDREAD View Post
    So no vendetta?

    Sure sounds like a vendetta. The article would've been much better if it stuck to the original scope.. Stubbs/Cozart's low OBP and what to do with Frasier.
    I don't see a vendetta at all. I see a plea to improve. At a minimum, it is a plea to be just a little more open minded.
    How do we know he's not Mel Torme?

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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    The article wrongly assumes that Frazier will be benched when Votto comes back.

    It suggests that Frazier play a super utility role, filling in once or twice week for Rolen, Ludwick and Stubbs, which is the plan the Baker said will happen. So basically, it calls out Baker for doing what it suggests Baker should do.
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Which means it's imperative that your best hitters bat as high in the order as possible.
    So imperative that not doing so might lead to something as horrible as the best record in baseball
    "Man, the pitch looks fast, even in slow motion." Thom Brennaman on Chapman's fastball.

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    Raaaaaaaandy guttle11's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    I think it's a bit of a reach to say Frazier will be a bench player. Rolen won't play more than 3 of 5 games. Same can be said for Ludwick. Votto is likely to get a few games off as well. With Stubbs struggling, I can see Heisey getting some time in center, meaning Frazier is likely to play LF when Ludwick sits.

    Frazier won't play the same position every day, but between 3B, LF, and 1B, I think he will be playing 3 of ever 5 games the rest of the season. That's not really a bench player when at least two other perceived "starters" will be doing the same. I think "super utility" is even a bit off, too. Utility players are that way because of defense, and typically can't hit a lick. Frazier will play multiple positions simply to keep his bat in the lineup as often as possible.
    Last edited by guttle11; 08-30-2012 at 12:20 PM.
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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    And again with the Chapman in relief instead of starting, Dusty's doing of course. It's the old cry around here that ignores the extraordinary chain of events that delayed Chapman's move to the rotation. Not to mention, he's on track to have a near historic season in this role.

    And the age old canards that Dusty overworks pitchers, favors vets, etc. etc. etc. - none of which has proven true during his tenure as the Reds manager.

    And it carries forward the lie, as others have already noted, that Todd Frazier's going to be benched. And, again as others have noted, the writer suggests a solution identical to what Baker's already saying. Some rocket scientist there.

    I'll keep saying it, they detest Dusty because he doesn't genuflect when sabermetrics is mentioned.

    The best record in baseball speaks for itself, even with the woeful OBP of the first two batters. Had this article been about the plethora of good players we've got and the dilemma we're facing in finding playing time for all of them (not to mention those coming up in subsequent years), I might have found it a new take. But it's just the "same old same old" bellyaching over a successful season. Let him go cry somewhere else.

    He concludes, "Let the kid play, Dusty. You'll be better for it." - shame he wasn't paying attention when it was discussed.
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    What I'd give for this lineup in September & October:

    Phillips, 2B
    Frazier, RF
    Votto, 1B
    Ludwick, LF
    Bruce, CF
    Rolen, 3B
    Hanigan, C
    Cozart, SS

    Flip Ludwick and Frazier if you want. Use Frazier as a sub for Rolen/Votto when needed, giving Stubbs his starts in those circumstances.
    Last edited by RedsManRick; 08-30-2012 at 12:32 PM.
    Games are won on run differential -- scoring more than your opponent. Runs are runs, scored or prevented they all count the same. Worry about scoring more and allowing fewer, not which positions contribute to which side of the equation or how "consistent" you are at your current level of performance.

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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Jonah writes an incredible amount of words every week, he covers all of the game and yet he too can miss the mark time to time. He also at this point of the season is sounding like Vin Scully does in the 4th game of a series. He is repeating the exact same things as he said about the team in May.

    1. Lineup
    2. Chapman not starting
    3. Dusty's past

    It's a constant throughout his pieces, he's just going to the well again.

    The fact is no one knows why it's all working when there are so many things that should not have worked out as well. It reminds me a lot of 2005 when the White Sox won despite all year having BP spend zeros and ones calling for their immediate demise from the result of going against everything BP had declared THE BOOK.

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    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Quote Originally Posted by wolfboy View Post
    I don't see a vendetta at all. I see a plea to improve. At a minimum, it is a plea to be just a little more open minded.
    So we have the oft-repeated "OBP on the top of the order", which is a valid point..

    No real solution for the Frasier problem. Bruce will not play CF .. sure, it's fun to discuss on message boards, but it will never happen.

    That stuff I quoted.. he's implying that Baker misused Chapman this year? I don't see how that could be argued.. Then he's repeating the same allegations about Baker loving inferior vets and ruining arms with no evidence at all.. just a jab.. Had he removed the part I quoted, it would've been a decent article.

    As it stands, it's just another of many "I'm smarter than Dusty Baker" articles, which have long been annoying.
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    Rally Onion! Chip R's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Quote Originally Posted by redsmetz View Post
    And again with the Chapman in relief instead of starting, Dusty's doing of course. It's the old cry around here that ignores the extraordinary chain of events that delayed Chapman's move to the rotation. Not to mention, he's on track to have a near historic season in this role.

    And the age old canards that Dusty overworks pitchers, favors vets, etc. etc. etc. - none of which has proven true during his tenure as the Reds manager.

    And it carries forward the lie, as others have already noted, that Todd Frazier's going to be benched. And, again as others have noted, the writer suggests a solution identical to what Baker's already saying. Some rocket scientist there.

    I'll keep saying it, they detest Dusty because he doesn't genuflect when sabermetrics is mentioned.

    The best record in baseball speaks for itself, even with the woeful OBP of the first two batters. Had this article been about the plethora of good players we've got and the dilemma we're facing in finding playing time for all of them (not to mention those coming up in subsequent years), I might have found it a new take. But it's just the "same old same old" bellyaching over a successful season. Let him go cry somewhere else.

    He concludes, "Let the kid play, Dusty. You'll be better for it." - shame he wasn't paying attention when it was discussed.
    What I find ironic is that the same people who criticize "old school" baseball people for not embracing changes in stats and the introduction of new metrics, won't change their opinions when it comes to people like Dusty. I admit I wasn't happy with Dusty's hire. But I was able to see that he doesn't hate OBP, he doesn't ruin starting pitchers, he doesn't hate young players and he doesn't sacrifice bunt every time a runner reaches 1st. I've also seen that he doesn't seem to be the "Us against the world" type of manager that he was in CHI. He's not the best manager who ever lived but he's certainly as good, if not better than a lot of guys who people believe are great managers.
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    Where's my chair? REDREAD's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R View Post
    What I find ironic is that the same people who criticize "old school" baseball people for not embracing changes in stats and the introduction of new metrics, won't change their opinions when it comes to people like Dusty.
    Yep, some baseball writers that preach stats are also some of the most closed minded people. They will criticize Dusty for something, yet refuse to even consider the possiblity that their own analysis might be flawed.

    Not all stat people are this way. But some are.
    Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2010-2014!

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    Redsmetz redsmetz's Avatar
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    Re: Jonah Keri on "The Reds' Embarrassment of Riches Problem"

    Quote Originally Posted by Chip R View Post
    What I find ironic is that the same people who criticize "old school" baseball people for not embracing changes in stats and the introduction of new metrics, won't change their opinions when it comes to people like Dusty. I admit I wasn't happy with Dusty's hire. But I was able to see that he doesn't hate OBP, he doesn't ruin starting pitchers, he doesn't hate young players and he doesn't sacrifice bunt every time a runner reaches 1st. I've also seen that he doesn't seem to be the "Us against the world" type of manager that he was in CHI. He's not the best manager who ever lived but he's certainly as good, if not better than a lot of guys who people believe are great managers.
    While I am a Baker apologist, I know full well that he's far from perfect (again, what manager is?). And yes, we would be better served having Stubbs elsewhere in the order. And yet, I won't fault Baker for standing behind him despite his continuing failure, particularly since the club is doing so well. And I would agree that Stubbs' defense has to be factored in. Preventing runs from being scored is essential to winning too.

    I would guess that if Stubbs finishes out the season as he has played thus far, the team will be looking for a different centerfielder. He won't be traded for the proverbial "bag of balls" as the recent thread left as the only trade option (sorry, I'm not giving him away), he can be part of a package to improve the team in other places. But for now, he's here and I expect a manager to show faith in his players if for no other reason then regularly denigrating them is a road to failure.

    And ultimately, maybe a change of scenery will do Drew Stubbs a world of good.
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