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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Johnny Cueto shuts down the Cardinals, lowers ERA to 2.15

Cincinnati is out of contention, but that didn’t stop Johnny Cueto and Aroldis Chapman from combining on a three-hit shutout of St. Louis as the Reds took three of four games from the Cardinals.

Cueto did the heavy lifting with eight shutout innings and then Chapman did his usual thing in the ninth inning, striking out two batters for his 33rd save.

Cueto’s excellence has gotten somewhat overlooked just because Clayton Kershaw has been so ridiculously amazing for the Dodgers, but the Reds ace now has a 2.15 ERA in a league-leading 222 innings this season.

People talk like Kershaw has the Cy Young wrapped up but Cueto could have 40-50 mores innings, more wins, and more strikeouts than Kershaw. I think Kershaw is the slight favorite her but if Cueto finishes strong and Kershaw slips just a bit, I could see Cueto deserving the Cy Young.

Russlan is fond of Dillon Gee Posted: September 11, 2014 at 03:54 PM | 27 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Monday, September 08, 2014

Leake concerned with longevity, not personal win-loss record

Leake, another face of Neolution.

“I’m like Bronson Aroryo always was,” he said. “I don’t really worry about the wins and losses. I’m more impressed with longetivity numbers than the immediate numbers.”

In his five years with the Reds, after coming directly from college to the Reds rotation, he is 52-30. More importantly to him, he pitched 192 innings last season and didn’t miss a starter.

“Making every start and throwing 200 innings is what I’d rather do every year than go out and win 15 or 20 games once or twice. The innings and pitching every start is more appealing to me than winning games.

“Wins and losses are really not an indication of how your season went,” said the 5-foot-10, 190-pound right hander. “You can have a 4.50 ERA and have 16 wins.”

That’s why Leake believes keeping wins and losses for pitchers is meaningless.

“I don’t even think wins and losses should be a pitcher’s stat,” he said. “That really is a team stat. I mean, just the other day Mat Latos doesn’t give up an earned run, all four runs are unearned, and he gets tagged with the loss. That’s difficult for a pitcher.”

Repoz Posted: September 08, 2014 at 05:58 PM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Homer Bailey To Undergo Forearm Surgery

D’OH!

Reds starter Homer Bailey will undergo surgery tomorrow on his right forearm to repair a flexor mass tendon tear, the club announced on Twitter. He is expected to be ready in time for the spring, according to a report from C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer...

Needless to say, this is not how the 28-year-old — and, even less so, his team — hoped to see this season end. Bailey inked a six-year, $105MM extension before the 2014 campaign, a significant investment for a mid-market club that has already locked up several core players and had to choose carefully in making commitments to its best arms…

this particular injury and procedure do not appear to be as momentous as a UCL replacement… Of course, forearm issues can be precursors to more serious injuries to the elbow and shoulder, so Cincinnati will surely handle its high-priced starter with care.

The District Attorney Posted: September 04, 2014 at 04:53 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: homer bailey, injuries, reds

Brisbee: Finding baseball’s most hopeless franchise

The included tweet should guarantee the honor just on principle.

Old teams in large markets with thin farm systems

This is where the Phillies are. This is where the Yankees are. Here be the White Sox… None of these teams will ever qualify for most-screwed status, though… their large-market status will always guarantee that there’s someone in a worse spot.

Older teams in small markets

The Reds might really be screwed… A lot of what makes the Reds a sorta-contender now, though, could still be good in the future… In about a week, the Brewers could be here… A lot of their best players are still 30 or under, though, so I’m not sure if they’re close to an “old” team just yet…

Cursed teams

the Padres… have a respected farm system, for what it’s worth, and they have young talent on the roster. Heck, they’re close to .500 right now because they’ve proven adept at developing pitchers, at least the ones who stay healthy.

They make the list, though, because they’re the Padres…

The Rockies

They get their own category because they win. What are the Rockies? Have you ever seen a team like this, a team so committed to its GM through 90-loss seasons, unless that’s not really the GM? An owner who might be something of a meddler and whose brain might be filled with gestational YouTube comments that he filters through his fingers and shares with fans?

Their franchise players are chronically hurt, and they have a long track record of breaking young pitchers, both in body and spirit. Everything about them is a mess right now, from the top down. That’s all before you get to the worst part: They already start with the biggest disadvantage in baseball, the thin air of Coors Field… It’s one of the Hilbert problems of baseball, except it’s been the same mathematicians working on the problem for the last 15 years, and most of the available evidence suggests they’re using a watch calculator with the “7” key missing.

The District Attorney Posted: September 04, 2014 at 04:27 PM | 38 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, mets, padres, phillies, reds, rockies, white sox, yankees

An interview with the ‘Hit King,’ Pete Rose

Don’t let the fear of making outs hold you back!

Mark: You’ve also got the record for the most at bats.

Pete: And I’ve got the record for the most games and I’ve got the record for the most wins.

Mark: The most outs too? Comment on that.

Pete: That’s okay, I mean, that’s okay. The guy second now is pretty good, his name is Carl Yastrzemski. I batted fourteen thousand and some times. I got four thousand and some hits. It was fun making the outs and having the opportunity to try to get base hits. You know, longevity is part of being a good person, whether you’re in business or whether you’re in sports and I played twenty-four years. I was pretty much injury free over most of my career and I was always surrounded with great players. You know I played with ten Hall of Famers. The first one being Frank Robinson and the last one being Barry Larkin. You throw in Bench, Morgan and Perez and you throw in Carlton and Mike Schmidt and you go up to Montreal and you throw in Gary Carter and Andre Dawson. You come back home as player/manager and you throw in Barry Larkin. I played for Sparky Anderson, Hall of Fame Manager. I played against a lot of Hall of Famers. Hit off of nineteen Hall of Fame pitchers. I don’t know how many Hall of Famers I played against. Pretty darn many I think.

...Mark: Well, you’ve traveled throughout the United States, now what makes this region of Cincinnati (Clermont County) so special to you?

Pete: Well, obviously one thing I was born here. Two, I was always a Cincinnati Reds fan growing up. Every boy wanted to be a Cincinnati Red. I’m no different than anybody else. I just happened to live the dream and be able to accomplish what I did in this town. I mean, there are a lot of good things going on in this town.

You know most of the things that I like about Cincinnati are involved in baseball. You know I’m not the type of guy that goes to plays, the Phantom of the Opera, although it’s great, I’m too macho to do that kind of stuff.

 

Repoz Posted: September 04, 2014 at 07:48 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: history, reds

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Doc Daugherty: Aroldis Chapman not necessary for Reds

Hell, even Doc Sportello is right once in a while (Fabian Fazzo).

Not that I dislike Aroldis Chapman. I like a good strikeout as much as the next guy. I think it’s great every time he throws a pitch 100 mph, every broadcaster has to tell us about it. It’s cool when he runs in from the bullpen and the GASP crowd cheers. His role in feeding pizza to the masses cannot not be underestimated.

But the fact is, Chapman is useful here, not necessary.

Should we list the reasons again, kids?

Let’s start with the fact that 14 pitchers in MLB have more saves than his 29. Including Addison Reed (Diamondbacks, 57-80) and Glen Perkins (Minnesota, 60-77). Yep, I know Chappy started the year on the DL. But the larger point remains, a great closer on a mediocre-at-best team is like a diamond ring on a chimp’s finger.

Again: Closers are beholden to situations. Specific situations. Somewhere in the Manager’s Manual For Running Games is this edict:

A manager may not use his “closer’’ unless his team is ahead by at least one run, but no more than 3; the game is not in the final inning, preferably the start of the final inning. Managers who employ a “closer’’ in other situations risk being booted from The Order of The Book and subjected to a lifetime of second guessing.

If BPrice had truly wanted to break the mold and burn The Book, he’d have used his best reliever in the most important situations. Hint: They ain’t always the start of the 9th, with the bases clean.

That would have ensured Chappy was used more, and just might have made his presence worth the circus atmosphere surrounding his entrance. As it is, Price hasn’t much strayed from The Book.

Beyond that, Chapman should have been put into the starting rotation, oh, three years ago, where he’d have been assured to work every fifth day, and could have been dominant for 7 innings, not one. That’s why the Reds signed him in the first place.

Repoz Posted: September 02, 2014 at 10:22 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: reds, sabermetrics

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Brewers Acquire Jonathan Broxton

I always thought Broxton was pretty Turnbow-y. But he does lead the Reds in games pitched and has a 1.86 ERA, so maybe I’m wrong. (3.52 FIP)

The Reds have traded right-hander Jonathan Broxton to the Brewers, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link).

The District Attorney Posted: August 31, 2014 at 01:36 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, jonathan broxton, reds, trades, transactions

Sherman: How Reds react to second-half swoon will be major factor in offseason

Leitch is scared of the Cubs also! Hop on the el train, choo choo!

the club that faces the most daunting hurdles [this offseason] is the Reds because: 1) Four-fifths of their rotation will enter their walk year to free agency in 2015. 2) They have huge investments in a right side of the infield, with Brandon Phillips and Joey Votto, that has significant indicators of diminishing returns. 3) They play in arguably the majors’ toughest division, with the Brewers, Cardinals and Pirates all still vying for the playoffs, and the scariest element for every team in the NL Central the behemoth growing at Wrigley…

“We still have a small window,” Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said by phone. “This year is disappointing because of the injuries. From the very beginning, we had 11 DL guys and eight were key. … I feel we still have a small window if the guys come back healthy.”

That could be true. But I think Cincinnati has to be proactive and shop Johnny Cueto and Mat Latos, and maybe [Jay] Bruce, too. Even at full health, the Reds would not be the favorites to win the NL Central next year — maybe not even be picked for second or third… Phillips and Homer Bailey have big contracts that can’t be moved or only can be moved by eating large sums and/or taking back equally bad pacts. Having those contracts means the Reds do not seem positioned to sign their ace, Cueto, and maybe not even Latos, at a time when that duo plus Mike Leake and Alfredo Simon are all free agents after the 2015 campaign. And to make bad worse, Cincinnati is viewed as having a bottom-tier farm system at a time when the Cardinals, Pirates and Cubs have among the best…

“We are certainly aware of the strength of our division and the emerging strength of the Cubs,” Jocketty said. “We have obviously kicked [what to do moving forward] around some, but once the season is over we will sit down and really focus on it. I don’t know that we could sign everybody. That would be tough to do. We will do the best we can to retain the pitching we have and make the right choices.”

The District Attorney Posted: August 31, 2014 at 11:03 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Thursday, August 28, 2014

McCoy: Bryan Price sees throwback style in current state of baseball

You haven’t lived…until you live through a Sonny Ruberto Era.

Price then became philosophic about the way the game is being played these days—much less offense, fewer home runs, fewer runs scored.

“It’s interesting in that the game seems to be trending back towards what we saw in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. We no longer have these grandiose offensive numbers. When I was in Seattle for my second year (as pitching coach) we were second in the league in earned run average with a 4.50. What is there, one team in the National League that has an ERA that high (Colorado 4.95)?”

Price didn’t mention that the Steroids Era is over, although many experts believe the steroids and PEDs helped pitchers as much as the hitters.

“What’s happening is phenomenal,” he said, after somebody mentioned that Arizona’s Paul Goldschmidt led the league with 37 home runs last season and 37 home runs in 2000 would have tied him for 15th.

“It will be interesting to see if the game keeps moving its way back to the sacrifice bunt, the hit-and-run, the things that kind of fallen by the wayside. You can no longer count on copious numbers of runs to be scored. You can no longer say, ‘Just hold on guys, we’ll have a four or five-run inning somewhere along he way and put this game away. It is something to see.”

But the strikeouts continue to pile up. It is no longer like 1941 when Joe DiMaggio put together his 56-game hitting streak and only struck out 13 times in 622 plate appearances. And that same year Ted Williams hit .406 and struck out 27 times in 606 plate appearances.

“The strikeout has become an acceptable part of the game, even with players who are not home run hitters,” said Price. “That’s the part to me that is really dangerous these days, all the empty at-bats.

When told of what DiMaggio and Williams did, Price shook his head and said, “That’s unbelievable, really unbelievable. It really is. It’s phenomenal.”

Repoz Posted: August 28, 2014 at 04:40 PM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: history, reds

Friday, August 22, 2014

Pete Rose’s Reckless Gamble

I have taught a variety of sports law courses in the past seven years. Every semester, when my lecture turns to sports gambling, I get some form of this question:

“But what about Pete Rose? He only bet on his team to win. What’s wrong with that?”

The gist of my response: A lot is wrong with that.

 


Votto appears. . .and speaks | The Real McCoy | Cincinnati Reds baseball news

Doesn’t Joey Votto know it’s only a flesh wound!!

Jim Furtado Posted: August 22, 2014 at 11:41 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: joey votto, reds

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Best Beer in Baseball

Several years ago, craft beer started taking off at Cincinnati’s Great American Ballpark. From 2011-2012, sales went up by 20 percent. From 2012-2013, they were up 47 percent.

So when it came time to create a new hangout in a highly trafficked spot on the third-base concourse, the ballpark went all-in on craft-style beers. The new Reds Brewery District – an 84-foot-long bar with more than 50 taps – included more than 20 craft offerings when it opened this spring. There were local beers from Cincinnati brewers like Christian Moerlein, MadTree, Blank Slate, Fifty West, Rhinegeist, Mt. Carmel, and Rivertown. There were national options from well-regarded breweries like Founders, Bell’s, West Sixth and Great Lakes.

And the market exploded. Counting single-day offerings, the Cincinnati Reds’ selection of distinct beers went from 42 to more than 130 – the most in Major League Baseball, according to a Washington Post analysis….

While teams like the Reds are just discovering the craft-beer market, the Seattle Mariners have long reveled in it. Located in the hops-mad Pacific Northwest – one of the bastions of craft brewing – the Mariners have a beer program that would make many specialty bars jealous.

About 70 percent of Safeco Field’s 700 beer handles are devoted to “good, quality craft beer,” according to Steve Dominguez, the general manager of Centerplate’s operations at Safeco Field.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 11, 2014 at 03:01 PM | 75 comment(s)
  Beats: beer, mariners, reds, stadium fare

Friday, August 08, 2014

Did The Enquirer Take Down a Castellini Arrest Story?

Robert S. Castellini, the 46-year-old son of Reds owner Bob Castellini, and his wife Deanna were arrested and charged with domestic violence for fighting in front of their children.

Crime reporter Kimball Perry was all over the story, as he has a long history of detailing the crayist of the cray in Hamilton County courtrooms, reporting on Monday that both Robert and Deanna went in front of a judge that morning and how court documents described “visible scratch marks around the neck of Ms. Castellini” and Robert having “visible scratches around his neck and shoulder.

Despite such drama and intrigue — three Castellinis work in the Reds front office and Robert’s lawyer is Hamilton County GOP chairman Alex Triantafilou — The Enquirer appears to have pulled the story from its website as of Tuesday afternoon.


Thursday, August 07, 2014

McCoy: Reds HOF inductee Oester about more than numbers

Plenty of Oestertag jazz.

Oester was more known in his playing and coaching days for things he did behind the scenes, his leadership in the clubhouse and for his ability to do things on the field to win games that didn’t relate to personal numbers.

...There was a day in the mid-1980s when outfielder and teammate Cesar Cedeon spent considerable time on the disabled list and was still on the disabled list when the Reds were playing the Houston Astros. Oster, known for playing hurt, was not in the lineup that day against Astros ace Mike Scott.

Cedeno accused Oester of having ‘Scott-itis,’ meaning he was ducking Scott. The words were barely out of Cedeno’s mouth when he was ducking punches from Oester and found himself on the floor with Oester on top of him.

During Oester’s coaching days with the Reds, fellow coach Tim Foli, an outspoken guy, said something disparaging about the team in the cramped quarters of the coaches office. Oester was on top of Foli in a flash and had him down on the floor when Foli bit Oester on the leg.

Oester took no guff.

...Oester became a Reds coach after his playing career and worked for manager Tony Perez in 1994. When Perez was fired only 44 games into his managing career, Oester was incensed and with a show of his immense loyalty he quit on the spot, something Perez never forgot and said, “Oester supported me, showed his loyalty to me.”

Oester returned as a coach for manager Jack McKeon and was the favorite to replace McKeon when he left after the 2000 season. Oester was offered the job and asked general manager Jim Bowden if he could sleep on it. While Oester slept, Bowden offered the job to Bob Boone and Boone accepted immediately without informing Oester.

He never forgot it. When the Reds played their last game in Cinergy Field in 2002, the team brought back players from the old stadium’s past and they lined up on the first-base line. Oester was included. Bowden walked the line, shaking hands with the players. When he got to Oester, Oester turned his back and stared at the outfield, refusing Bowden’s offered hand.

Repoz Posted: August 07, 2014 at 07:08 PM | 52 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Must C: Ball gets loose on field

Will someone please explain why the umpires didn’t have the discretion to rule this play dead and permit Murphy to return to third base? After all, the ball came from the Reds bullpen, which is gated (i.e., not Wrigley)....

JE (Jason) Posted: August 06, 2014 at 09:43 AM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: indians, reds, umpires, umpiring

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Reds lethargic effort leaves Price perplexed

As Specs Rigveda once said: “Lethargy can prove fatal for baseball life.”

The Reds lost the opener of their four-game, home-and-home series with Cleveland, 7-1, at Progressive Field. How they lost was what had Price incensed as he sat in the manager’s office after the game.

“We’re a .500 team after 112 games; we’re 56-and-56,” said Price. “What was disappointing and unacceptable tonight was the fact that we didn’t have our head in the game at all, especially those first five innings.”

In those first five innings, Price said two players forgot how many outs there were. Starting pitcher Alfredo Simon didn’t cover first base on a ground ball to first baseman Brayan Pena. And despite putting pressure on Cleveland starter and ace Corey Kluber with five base runners in the first three innings, Price said a three-run homer by Indians third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall that made the score 4-0 in the fourth inning all but ended the game.

“There was feeling that the game was over,” said Price. “We did rally a bit and come to life in the last couple of innings with a little bit of energy in the dugout but it was unacceptable. We haven’t done that much this year but what happened tonight was unacceptable from an effort and a mental perspective. That’s not the way we play. That’s not the way we’ll play again. We need a lot better than that.”

...“Any team will have games like that, and hopefully it’s very few over the course of a year,” said Price. “We haven’t had many. Even when we had the big lead against Toronto and they scored 14 runs on us, they just hit and hit and hit and we couldn’t stop it. It wasn’t from a lack of effort or quit. Today there just wasn’t any energy. I don’t know what it was.

“It’s unlike our club and that’s why I think it will be an anomaly in the season. It won’t be something we’ll see as a recurring issue. Or we’ll have a big problem here, and I don’t anticipate that.”

Repoz Posted: August 05, 2014 at 08:42 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

2015 Competitive Balance Lottery Results

The Competitive Balance Lottery for the 2015 MLB Draft took place this afternoon. Twelve competitive balance picks are awarded, with the first six taking place after the first round’s conclusion and the next six taking place following conclusion of the second round. Here are the results, per MLB.com (Twitter links)...

Competitive Balance Round A

  Marlins
  Rockies
  Cardinals
  Brewers
  Padres
  Indians

Competitive Balance Round B

  Reds
  Athletics
  Mariners
  Twins
  Orioles
  Diamondbacks

As MLB.com’s Jim Callis explained earlier in the week, teams that have one of the 10 smallest markets or one of the 10 smallest revenue pools are eligible to receive a compensatory pick between the first and second rounds (Round A) or between the second and third rounds (Round B).

Its about time the Cardinals got some help to become more competitive.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Daugherty: Reds, not Selig, should have final say on Pete Rose

I was going to name my next band Władziu Ziu Peddles…but Liberace’s Ghost is go!

If I were Bob Castellini and the Reds organization – and I most assuredly am not – this is what I would say to Bud Selig, right now, about Peter Edward and the 2015 All Star Game:

“It’s our game. If we want Pete Rose to deliver the game ball on a rolling stage with showgirls, slot machines and Liberace’s ghost, that’s what we’re going to do.

“We have groveled as you have tossed us crumbs. We have been thankful and deferential and bowed deeply from the waist. But now, you’re outta here, and we will do with The Hit King what we damned well please.’‘

What is Baseball going to do about it? Deny Cincinnati an all-star game for another 27 years?

...But fair is fair and enough is enough. A lifetime ban has morphed into a lifetime grudge. This is in the “best interests of baseball?’‘

I don’t want to list reasons why Rose should be released from purgatory, or suggest his crimes against the game were any less egregious than those perpetrated – allegedly—by juicers whose names are still on the Hall of Fame ballot.

Everyone knows all that already. Anywhere else but Cincinnati, it’s not a major concern. But this is Cincinnati, and we are next in line for the all-star bash. And we should decide what role our flawed favorite son plays in our party, not a commissioner who will have been retired seven months.

More than that, though. . .

It’s time. Pete Rose is 73 years old, and out of the game for the last 25 years. Selig should come down from on high, leave the crumbs for the pigeons and do the benevolent thing. While he still can.

Repoz Posted: July 16, 2014 at 04:53 PM | 44 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Monday, July 14, 2014

Knobler: Inside MLB’s Cuban Pipeline: It’s High-Risk, High-Reward

Mr. Burns, I think we can trust the President of Cuba.

Eventually, the players who leave the island establish residency in another country and are declared free agents. Workouts are scheduled, sometimes attracting 200 scouts and executives if the player is a big enough star.

Sometimes, a player may work out for a specific team, as Abreu did for the Reds when they wanted to see if he could play third base or left field (he couldn’t, at least not to their satisfaction, and with Joey Votto set at first base, they reluctantly dropped out of the bidding).

Eventually, a player signs pending a physical exam, which can be something of an adventure in itself. The Dodgers had to have someone drive Puig 1.5 hours across Mexico City to find an MRI machine. When the Reds recently signed pitcher Raisel Iglesias, scheduling the physical was almost a bigger obstacle than negotiating the contract.

“We were working on a tight deadline, and the kid couldn’t get a visa yet to come to the Dominican Republic or the U.S.,” Reds general manager Walt Jocketty explained. “We finally brought a doctor from the Dominican, and a Spanish-speaking doctor we work with in Cincinnati, to see the kid in Haiti. But then they had to find an MRI machine in Haiti.”

It all got done, and now the Reds will hope Iglesias does as well for them as Chapman has. He was nearly as expensive, costing the Reds $27 million for a seven-year contract, even though he wasn’t as highly touted as Chapman (who got $30.25 million for six years in January 2010).

The prices keep going up, which only makes the decisions tougher.

“The gut feel has to be there,” said Don Welke, a top Rangers scout who has been to many Cuban showcases and was involved in the signing of outfielder Leonys Martin. “It’s huge risk, huge reward. As it’s turned out recently, whoever has taken the risk has gotten the reward.

“But some scout had to stick his neck out for every one of these guys. And you’d better darn well be right, because your owner is asking you why you want to spend so much on a guy you only saw in two workouts.”


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Aroldis sets MLB record with K in 40th straight game

His streak began on Aug. 21, 2013.

Chapman surpassed Bruce Sutter, who did so in 39 straight games from June 1-Oct. 2, 1977.

Given the current environment, I would have guessed that this record was like five minutes old.  But 1977…that impressive.  I guess.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Oz: Thumb injuries to Yadier Molina, Brandon Phillips shake up NL Central

I hereby confer upon you the honorary degree of ThD. That’s Doctor of Thumbology.

The news wasn’t good for the St. Louis Cardinals and their cornerstone catcher Yadier Molina. Molina has a torn ligament in his thumb and will miss 8-12 weeks after surgery, according to Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak.

Nor was it good for the division rival Cincinnati Reds, who confirmed Thursday that their star second baseman Brandon Phillips also needs thumb surgery to repair a ligament. The Reds say he’ll miss six weeks…

Both injuries figure to shake up the NL Central, where the Cards and Reds had both been making a charge at the first-place Milwaukee Brewers. Heading into Thursday’s action, the Brewers were up two games on the Cardinals and two and a half on the Reds…

Unless the Cardinals make a move — A.J. Pierzynski and his smartphone are available — Tony Cruz figures to takeover the everyday catching duties. He’s played in 21 games this season and is hitting .255 in 51 at-bats. He’s been with the Cardinals since 2011 but has never played more than 51 games in a season.

The Reds have utilityman Skip Schumaker listed as their No. 2 second baseman, but back-up shortstop Ramon Santiago played there Thursday against the Cubs….

With the Cardinals and Reds hurting, the Brewers have to feel better about their chances of holding on to their division lead. Meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Pirates, four and a half back and in fourth place, have to sense a great opportunity in front of them.

The District Attorney Posted: July 10, 2014 at 08:17 PM | 36 comment(s)
  Beats: brewers, cardinals, injuries, pirates, reds

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Doc Daugherty: Joey Votto DL - Adam Dunn ?

Wrong for Each Other! Doc Pompous strikes again!

As The Club preps for a doubleheader that could set longevity records, The Morning Man says J. Votto will go on the DL today. The wonder is how much he will be missed.

The last time I suggested, “Not as much as you’d think,’’ I took the predictable bashing from the OBP crowd and the Walk Freaks. So be it. The fact is, losing Votto is not the blow it used to be, because Votto isn’t the hitter he used to be. That likely owes to the chronic quadriceps pain that keeps him from driving off his back leg.

He could be gone this time until late August. The Reds will have to find a first baseman. Period. They have no one in their weak-hitting farm system. They have no one on the 25-man who can play there every day.

Which brings us to today’s Essential Question:

Who?

A name that has popped up is Adam Dunn. TML has one thing to say about that:

No.

Noooooooo.

You might see Dunn’s name and recall long home runs. I see it and recall Dunn in the clubhouse every afternoon, splayed on a leather couch, reading car magazines.

You might see serious longball potential for a Club that could use some, and a nice fixture at cleanup. I see a player who has never won anywhere. Who is too cool for school. Whose “work habits’’ here were not exactly a shining example for young players.

I wrote a column once, in the declining days of the Junior-Dunn Era, suggesting the Reds would be better instantly, if only they’d take the couches out of the clubhouse. Dunn ridiculed me, naturally. Then he got traded. Seems someone important agreed with me. Is it coincidence The Club started winning once Dunner and Griff left the building? Perhaps.

The couches are still in the clubhouse. They’re not used very much.

Repoz Posted: July 08, 2014 at 10:21 AM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: reds

Friday, July 04, 2014

Erardi: Billy Hamilton plays like greats he doesn’t remember

Where have you gone…Lefty Gomez?

Over the years, the same has been true with all the great center fielders, from Willie Mays to Jim Edmonds and Andruw Jones and the Reds’ Eric Davis.

But it goes back even farther than that.

I related an anecdote to Hamilton that dates back to 1937.

New York Yankees pitching great Lefty Gomez was talking to rookie center fielder Joe DiMaggio one day after a game the Yankees had lost on a deep drive that one-hopped the center field wall at Yankee Stadium.

Gomez: “How come you were playing so shallow on that one, Joe?”

DiMaggio: “I’m gonna make ‘em forget Tris Speaker.”

Gomez: “You keep playing there, you’re gonna make ‘em forget Lefty Gomez.”

News flash to Lefty: They’ve already forgotten you—or at least Hamilton has; he didn’t seem to recognize the name, and I’m not sure he even recognized the name of DiMaggio, either—but he laughed at the story, because he got the point.

Almost four score years later, the Gomez-DiMaggio story still resonates.

Hamilton has gone to most of the Reds pitchers and told them that he’d like to play shallow.

“They’ve all said, ‘Do it,’” recalled Hamilton. “Cueto and Homer (Bailey) have told me point blank, ‘If they hit it over your head, it’s my fault.’ That gives me the confidence to play shallow. The pitchers hate the cheapies. They’d rather give up something hit hard than a broken-bat blooper.”

Repoz Posted: July 04, 2014 at 06:11 AM | 94 comment(s)
  Beats: history, reds

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Career minor-leaguer Jumbo Diaz called up after losing 69 pounds in offseason

The nickname came because at one point he was in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization and they had two players named Jose Diaz. To make it easier, the hefty pitcher became “Jumbo.” But knowing that his weight was part of the reason he wasn’t getting called up — despite a 1.66 ERA in 2013 and good stuff, including a 96-97 mph fastball — Diaz decided to make a change last winter.

What happened to calling guys like this ‘tiny’ or ‘slim’?  Where have you gone ironic nicknames?

And I’m not sure I’m buying that teams are turning away guys with sub two ERAs who can throw 96 for aesthetic reasons.

Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: June 22, 2014 at 03:50 AM | 19 comment(s)
  Beats: nicknames, reds

Thursday, June 19, 2014


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