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Thread: Minor League Rotation Jenga

  1. #1
    Member Bourgeois Zee's Avatar
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    Minor League Rotation Jenga

    The Reds are in transition right now, and it shows in minor league pitching rotations. I've got the following in Louisville to start the season (assuming health):
    - Justin Dunn/ Connor Overton
    - Brandon Williamson
    - Levi Stoudt
    - Ben Lively/ Casey Legumina
    - Kevin Herget/ Carson Spiers

    Now, that's some depth, some upside, a couple real prospects, a couple failed major leaguers-- the typical AAA rotation, honestly. After that, though, is where things get... complicated.

    There are 10 guys who could well claim a spot in the Chattanooga rotation, and I have no idea how the Reds will manage their stockpile of starting pitchers. It's past time to make decisions on some of these guys, but here we are. They all have warts, but there's also enough real talent to see what happens too. Were it me, I'd pull out the old piggyback starter plan again or, failing that, fast-track at least three (and as many as five) would-be starters as relievers so that they might make their major league debut this season.

    Piggybacking has its advantages. It shortens games, for sure, and provides a rather unique way to develop guys to their fullest. Too, it should be effective for Chattanooga. There's not a guy in the would-be 10-deep rotation who's shown a propensity to pitch to contact, conserve pitches, and go deep into games. Piggybacking a five-inning guy with a four-inning guy allows both to go relatively deep, use more than a couple of pitches, and pitch through lineups a third time (or fourth). Too, while Boyle, Abbott, Roa, and Phillips are probably a head better than any of the other guys, every one of these pitchers needs the challenge of AA.

    That, however, doesn't seem to the plan. I expect Krall and company might keep Bonnin, Richardson, and Farr in Dayton for half a season of healthy innings before making decisions. Each has reasons for repeating the level-- the two former for injury and the latter for ineffectiveness. They'd be slumming it in Dayton, but it's close to the major league squad and the Reds could send out medical personnel to check on them.

    This is not to say that some guys won't be moved to the pen. I expect Eduardo Salazar is pen-bound (and might be something). Benschoter, too, is old, and his stuff plays up as a RP (or at least it did in the AFL).

    There's also Rule V acquisition Kyle Glogoski, whose numbers are exceptional. He's likely to play a part... somewhere. We're going to ignore him for now because I literally have no clue. (As is typical, you might argue.)

    That, then, leaves the Chattanooga rotation as:
    - Joe Boyle
    - Andrew Abbott
    - Connor Phillips
    - Jake Wong OR Kyle Glogoski
    - Christian Roa

    with Benschoter and Salazar as relievers (along with Gayman, Benoit, Kravetz, Michael Byrne, Vin Tampanelli, and Broxton Roby?)

    That leaves the following candidates for Dayton:
    - Bryce Bonnin
    - Chase Petty
    - Steve Hajjar
    - Lyon Richardson
    - Thomas Farr
    - Javi Rivera
    - Julian Aguiar
    - Tanner Cooper
    - Hunter Parks
    - Jose Franco
    - Ryan Cardona

    Now, that looks like it might result in a piggyback rotation. (Plus one. I guess we can assume one injury?) Adding Luis Mey, Dennis Boatman, and Rule V guy Brooks Crawford could work-- if you're ignoring the previous season's minor league relief arms that showed a bit of promise. That seems unlikely, honestly.

    We do know that Jose Acuna, Bryce Hubbart, and Reynardo Cruz are ticketed to Daytona. Chris McElwain almost assuredly has a spot there too. Abel, if he's in Cincinnati's plans, belongs there as well. (As does Jabob Heatherley, if he's healthy.)

    How do you put the various rotations together? Are you piggybacking? If so, would that be in AA or Dayton? (Or, failing that, Daytona?) If you're moving SP to the pen, which ones?


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  3. #2
    Member mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    A lot depends on who is in the Reds rotation and who is in the pen. My shot at it (not necessarily my preference):

    MLB: Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft, Cessa, Weaver with a pen of Diaz, Antone, Sims, Santillan, Farmer, SanMartin, Overton and Alex Young (NRI Lefty). Ian Gibaut out of options is removed from roster to make room.
    AAA: Lively, Herget, Williamson, Stoudt, Spiers
    AA: Abbott, Boyle, Phillips, Benschoter, Roa
    A+ Petty, Farr, Bonin, Aguiar, Hajjar
    A Acuna, Cooper, Rivera, Parks, Cardona

    Others who will get starts when openings occur. Proctor, Franco, Hubbert, Rudd, Cruz
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

  4. #3
    Member Bourgeois Zee's Avatar
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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    Quote Originally Posted by mth123 View Post
    A lot depends on who is in the Reds rotation and who is in the pen. My shot at it (not necessarily my preference):

    MLB: Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft, Cessa, Weaver with a pen of Diaz, Antone, Sims, Santillan, Farmer, SanMartin, Overton and Alex Young (NRI Lefty). Ian Gibaut out of options is removed from roster to make room.
    AAA: Lively, Herget, Williamson, Stoudt, Spiers
    AA: Abbott, Boyle, Phillips, Benschoter, Roa
    A+ Petty, Farr, Bonin, Aguiar, Hajjar
    A Acuna, Cooper, Rivera, Parks, Cardona

    Others who will get starts when openings occur. Proctor, Franco, Hubbert, Rudd, Cruz
    You completely left out acquisitions Jake Wong (trade), Casey Legumina (trade), and Kyle Glogoski (Rule V). Typically, if a team acquires a guy via either of those avenues, they're given a chance. I'd guess at least two of those have starting berths nearly sewn up.

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    Member mth123's Avatar
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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    Quote Originally Posted by Bourgeois Zee View Post
    You completely left out acquisitions Jake Wong (trade), Casey Legumina (trade), and Kyle Glogoski (Rule V). Typically, if a team acquires a guy via either of those avenues, they're given a chance. I'd guess at least two of those have starting berths nearly sewn up.
    I think Legumima will be in the AAA pen and a AAA shuttle option.

    I do like Glogoski for the Dayton rotation. That would move Farr into an alternate role or Bonin to the pen as a fast track guy.

    Wong is hard to predict. He missed 2020 and 2021. He did get 17 starts last yar and wasn't bad in A+. At his age, I'm thinking bullpen.

    The other guy I left off is Lyon Richardson. I wonder if he becomes a hard throwing reliever.
    "All I can tell them is pick a good one and sock it." --BABE RUTH

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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    There's also a host of pitchers taken in last year's draft that saw under 7 innings of work in the ACL. The Reds must have some idea which ones are starters. The shared starter roles for the low minors sounds like a good strategy.

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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    Franco is injured. Will probably miss the season.

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    mth123 (01-22-2023)

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    Re: Minor League Rotation Jenga

    Louisville
    Brandon Williamson
    Andrew Abbott
    Levi Stoudt
    Graham Overton
    Carson Spiers
    Ben Lively - could see him released


    Chattanooga
    Connor Phillips
    Joe Boyle
    Christian Roa
    Bryce Bonnin
    Sam Benschoter
    Thomas Farr - probably a reliever and f everyone is healthy

    Dayton
    Chase Petty
    Javi Rivera
    Julian Aguiar
    Steve Hajjar
    Lyon Richardson
    Tanner Cooper- probably piggybacking some

    Daytona
    Bryce Hubbart
    Ryan Cardinia
    Jose Acuna
    Hunter Parks
    Kenya Huggins

    I think the guys they added this past offseason will be relievers.


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