Game 58: vs. COL

Mark has the series against Colorado off, so I’ll be handling the blog and everything else for a few days. My name is Jeremy Warnemuende, and I’m the associate reporter here in Cincinnati for the season. I’ve got the lineup for today’s game below. As expected, Brandon Phillips is out. Cesar Izturis is starting in his place for the second day in a row, but Dusty Baker said today that Jack Hannahan could see some time at second or shortstop with Phillips out.

Reds lineup vs. Rockies

Choo 8
Cozart 6
Votto 3
Bruce 9
Frazier 5
Paul 7
Hanigan 2
Izturis 4
Arroyo 1


Interesting challenge over the next 3 days…
Let’s see the matchup:

Category…Reds versus Rockies
R… 8th versus 5th
BA…15th versus 5th
OBP…3rd versus 5th
SLG…16th versus 5th

Advantage: Colorado

Category…Reds versus Rockies
ERA…3rd versus 15th
QS…4th versus 24th
WHIP…1st versus 19th
BAA…2nd versus 25th

Advantage: Reds

Guess it’s true what they say; “good pitching shuts down good hitting”.

Welcome aboard Jeremy.

Since I don’t see any other comments on this I think that I will chime in with my 2 cents, ” Reds look to stockpile pitching The Reds will likely have their focus on building organizational pitching and finding inexpensive college talent during the upcoming Draft. More »”

I have been a Reds fan my entire life. My grand father was a janitor for the University of Cincinnati when The Reds used to train and work out there. I got to meet the greats Johnny, Pete, Joe, George, Dan, Cesar, Pedro, Davey, Sparky, Tony, and all the rest. There was a time when the numbers of economics favored Cincinnait quite well. Free Agency has never been a friend to this organization and many baseball professionals still feel that the Red’s organization was the first team to be torn apart and that it was a conspiracy by the North East market to establish a system to prevent organizations like Cincinnati from competing on an even playing ground. There has never been a team like the one that the Reds put together from 73 till 77 and those days are gone and we’ll never see them come back to us.

When I see a headline like I opened up with it makes me realize that the Reds just might be the smallest market team out there. Despite the quality of players they have in their organization, The all star cast that they are now fielding, good management, and quite possibly the best GM in the game this article points out that the Reds future is bleak when they mention “inexpensive college talent” for their criteria for drafting players. In other words folks we won’t have an infusion of top tier draft picks for some time to come. We all know what happens when you go cheap on your future. Every franchise knows that. I fear the Reds are one or two years away from a Miami style fire sale, and if that is the case we are in for another 20 years of darkness without light thanks to the rebuilding with “inexpensive college talent” which is apparently all we can afford to pursue. Dark days around the corner, hope we win this year as this is going to be our best chance for the near future.

My thoughts exactly.

They are one of the smallest markets, but not the smallest. True, they will never be able, year in and year out, to compete with the big boys given the present economic arrangements of the game. And the present run won’t last as long as it might in bigger markets. I think most of us know that! But there is a present run, clearly. And going after college-seasoned pitching talent is NOT an indication of any darkness approaching. That is a time-honored strategy for most organizations once you get beyond the first several rounds, where picks, and, yes, position player picks, are taken based on the best player still out there, no matter the playing background or the cost, which is pretty well set and fairly determined among the teams. It simply indicates that the lower rounds will not be wasted on position players likely to never rise to the bigs. Rather, the chance is taken on a pitching prospect being the proverbial “diamond in the rough” or a good enough all-round athlete that they can be converted to a position player, which happens frequently.

Dale, you said this season was over before the season already started. Dark days, ha. Please.

I forgot Curt that you were a financial investor in the Reds. Show me in any sport were investment in the inexpensive ever leads to success on the field. Last I checked the Reds wouldn’t even make the playoff if the season ended. They are in third place behind the Pirates.

How many wild cards are their this year and last year? The Reds and Pirates lead the 2 wild card spots by many many games right now.

The A’s have won by doing this. Or does that not count? And you didn’t forget that I was a financial investor, because I never was.

You need to check the standings a little more frequently…

Gentlemen (and Ladies, if any are present), I present the Chicago Cubs. Lots and lots of money, perennially bad baseball team. G (and L), I offer up the LA Dodgers. Lots and lots of other teams’ expensive stars, experiencing their own ‘Dark Days.’ I will grant you this much: small market teams have to be smarter and luckier, and their turns in the limelight come in cycles with rebuilding years usually outnumbering the playoff runs (excepting the Cardinals, who have clearly sold their collective souls to the devil). However, high draft picks and high signing bonuses and big ticket free agents guarantee nothing. Yes, the Reds are in that arc at the top, like the weightlessness flights, which will last as long as it lasts but not very long. We knew that before Phillips and Joey signed. We’ll know it again when all the pitching comes up for re-signing. However, there’s no reason for the downward arc to last as long as it has for the Pirates, the Royals or the Padres. We can be like the Cardinals, if we’re smarter and luckier than the other clubs. And right now, we have reason to hope we will be.

This is nonsense about the Cubs; they have won three division titles in the past decade and once got a notorious four outs from the World Series.. By anyone’s account, that outdistances the Reds, who haven’t even sniffed a World Series in that same decade, going all the way back to 1995, though that great Brave team then didn’t allow them to breathe in deeply for very long! And while since ’08 the Cubs have been a pretty bad club, they are rebuilding nicely and steadily around starting pitching and some talented, young players in the field that will have them back in the contention hunt soon. Money does prevail, but, as you say, it has to be spent smartly. Many do so; you mention the Dodgers and I would add the Jays and Angels and, sporadically, even the Marlins to that list of failures. But just as many do manage to translate money into consistent contention: The Yanks, Red Sox, Phils mostly, and the Cards, though on a lesser level. Don’t be misled by the annual salary figures, where the Reds have definitely been on the move, upward. A much better measure is the long term commitments possible, and there the Cards are clearly a mid-market while the Reds remain in the lower tier. So even if we proved as smart and as lucky, as you put it, as the Cards, we would still lag behind. The fan base is so much larger. Just go sometime to their typical MLB threads. The responses are often three or four times as large as their Cincinnati counterpart, even, as now, when both teams are winning. This support plays out in the long run.
One final tangential point: The Cards are not lucky. They have had a built-in edge dating from the 1920s and borne of the genius and innovation of a younger Branch Rickey, two decades before his Jackie Robinson days.

D-R-O, it’s not nonsense about the Cubs. Historically, they’ve been less significant in the annals of championship babseball than the Washington Senators! The law of averages indicate every team ought to snag a World Series, if only by accident, in 100 years. But let’s let that go for a moment. What the Reds and perhaps the Pirates, are showing is that they don’t have to be AAA+ teams for the deep pocket squads. And that is a huge accomplishment for Jockety and his two predecessors. I’d about given up hope, and I’m sure Pirate fans ***had*** surrendered to despair. Now, the leagues have to find a economic formula that allows the small market teams to keep their stars. I’m sure no TV network wants to pay millions (billions?) for a World Series between Milwaukee and KC, but the fans of those teams deserve realistic hope.

Yes, it must be great to have Branch Rickey karma, but this year’s Cardinals will surely lose two in a row sometime, won’t they?

All World Series wins, especially in the age of divisions and wild cards, are pretty much a crap shoot. And don’t forget the first decade of the Twentieth Century. Just there alone, the Cubs outshone all the incarnations of the Washington Senators/Nationals put together. The Cards may NOT have been lucky, but the Cubs have surely been snake bitten.

The Cards are a remarkable team…this season they have pitching and they have some serious clutch hitting. These characters have made only missed the playoffs in 4 of the last 13 season (one time they missed two years in a row!). They are very well run and their fans are rated #1 not only in MLB, but rated against all sporting teams (Reds’ fans are rated #10). They can rely on their income year after year without much fluctuation, and their team salary isn’t all that bad; $113m this year, versus our new plateau of $101m (rarified air). There is absolutely no doubt that the disparity in MLB is due to the NEW YORKS/DODGERS all the way down to HOUSTON, and everyone else in between. MLB tries to get It more equal, but we, the Reds, will always be behind the eight ball when it comes to ‘ability to pay’. The two major sources of income for a team are TV/Cable rights and attendance; the Cards remain consistent in those two categories. The good news is that the Reds are entering into some major consideration of local TV monies; without them moving forward the Reds could not have signed Votto, Bruce and Phillips to such major extended contracts, as well as what faces them moving forward in order to sign other players. The further good news is that “it’s our time” because we have raised our team salary to somewhere around $105m (depending on site you look at) and that is a huge increase from last year of around $83m. Now, let’s we need to get’r done; while increasing attendance…something that isn’t happening as much as we would like this season. We need at least 2.5m+ this season versus 2.35m last season.

You can’t squeeze juice out of a shriveled, pulpy piece of fruit!

I am NOT a Cradinals fan but I do rely on their players for fantasy baseball purposes and I have noticed one thing about their home grown offensive players, they are COACHED and TAUGHT in the minors on situational hitting, even with two strikes. As for the Reds, not so much.

Well said. The Cardinals also knew exactly when to not go head over heels for Puhols. Reds invest in the wrongs things when you compare them to other teams that win year in and year out. I think right now the Cardinals are the premiere baseball team, I am a bit jealous how they invest in their future and in assuring their fans of a team that can compete year in and year out. The Reds are just…. a farm system for everyone else sad to say.

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