Happy holidays

Greetings everyone. I hope you all enjoy some peace, love, family and friendship during the holidays this week.

*Not a ton of Reds news happened during my time off last week. No big shock that Shin-Soo Choo signed elsewhere and once Jacoby Ellsbury signed his deal, it wasn’t a stunner that Choo got seven years and $130 million from the Rangers.

The Reds were never going to approach that zip code of salary, nor should they have tried. The team in the Reds market size could not afford to be hamstrung for that much money. In the one year he was with Cincinnati, I thought Choo was not only an impressive player to watch, but an impressive person. He was very concerned about pulling his weight for his team and teammates. He was always courteous to the media and just professional all around.

*Billy Hamilton is now the guy to leadoff and play center field. The good news is Hamilton doesn’t have to have a .423 on-base percentage like Choo to be successful. But he’ll have to get on base enough to use his weapon of speed.

*Saw this on Twitter yesterday:

Last week, Sportsnet.ca in Canada did a real moving story on Freel’s final days and hours. It’s not easy to read. We never really know the players away from the clubhouse but you could tell there were swings when Freel was really up and also times he was really down. He was always good to me and I appreciated that. I wish his family well during the holidays.

*I would expect the Reds make some more moves in January but maybe not the big splash everyone expected the past month. I don’t know if they can pull off the big trade at this point. That window seems to be closing. There could be some cheaper options slipping in price on the free agent market that could boost the team offensively.

That’s it for now. Again, please enjoy the holidays.

19 Comments

Hi Mark. Happy Holidays to you and your family! I’m just curious, what kind of options are out there that you think might fit for the Reds in the free agent world that could improve the club?

Merry Christmas to you and your family, As far as The Reds go,If they can’t sign other quality players or keep their own free agents, then please fold up the tent’s and sell the team!!! I am so tired of the small market excuse, and seeing all the comments about how the Reds should trade this pitcher or that because we can’t afford them, If the importance to the Reds and their fan base is to just be competitive and watch other teams win Championships, then maybe it’s time for me to give up as a loyal fan for over 40 years, and save my money that I would normally spend on Reds merchandise or Mlb baseball package with Directtv!! sincerely a very tired and frustrated Reds fan!!! Aargh!!!!

What you label an “excuse” is not one at all; it is reality that I’m surprised a fan of forty years, as you claim yourself to be, hasn’t previously noticed. What, in the end, you are really saying is that you need to switch allegiances to a bigger market club that experiences more success, like the Yanks, Giants, Cards, or Red Sox, not to mention the others that have billion dollar television contracts like the Dodgers and Angels. Go ahead. It’ll be like rooting for General Motors back in their heyday!

If there were a “like” button Denny, I’d have clicked it.

Well said.

Dave, I’m 68 and have been following the Reds since I was 12, all be here in Los Angeles. We have a competitive team. Last year we just didn’t have enough fire power but we were a feared team. Don’t know what 2014 will bring, but I will tell you I enjoy following our Reds. Who will have a breakout year, or who will take it to the next level? Don’t know but am looking forward to finding out. In my opinion, you are not wasting you money, I get to see the the Reds here in L A and sometimes in S D or S F. If I were to ask you, how much fun have you had at Riverfront and Great American over the years, what would be your answer?

Stop the whining please. The Reds, a small market team does more with what they can afford than just about all the small markets. This is the best ownership they’ve ever had! Remember Marge and OMG, Carl Lindler? And when our aces were Jimmy Haynes and Elmer Dessens?! Aaahhh!!! The Reds payroll was $116 mil last year. They try to put a winner on the field. They address their needs.They even replaced Dusty and are paying him to stay home! They’ve made the playoffs 3 of 4 years. It’s up to the players now to get it done.

Thanks for all you do for us fans. Thanks so much for the link to the article about Ryan Freel. Really tough read, but helpful in understanding why he did what he did. A troubled soul. Thanks again.

I agree. The small market problem is a reality. I believe in Bob Castilini and his team to do the best he can for us fans. It is frustrated at times but it’s a fact of life. Go REDS !

Sign Arroyo, trade Bailey mid-season if he doesn’t want to sign a long term deal, and hopefully move Stephenson to the starting rotation (midseason). Stephenson, the Reds’ first-round pick in the 2011 draft, was 7-7 with a 2.99 ERA at three different levels in 2013, starting the season with low-Class A Dayton and finishing the season at Double-A Pensacola. Stephenson struck out 136 batters in 114.1 innings while walking 35.

Reds have to dump BP’s contract, that thing is an anchor. Then they have to lock up Latos and Bailey. During all of this, the Reds offense is going to stink. Its hard to imagine with every team getting 25 million extra this year the Reds are going to put such a crappy offense on the field.

I would love to see a chapman/Phillips trade to New York Yankees in exchange for Gardner, Kelly Johnson, campos, and nuno. Gives the yanks the heir to Rivera for years to come and that 2nd baseman they need, along with the personality needed for New York. Gives the reds an outfielder they need, a 2nd baseman, and two pitchers.

Other than going all out for Giancarlo Stanton, which I would offer chapman, lutz and corcino.

The Rays are excited about the defensive play that new catcher Ryan Hanigan will bring, writes Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times. Tampa Bay acquired the backstop from the Reds earlier this month in a three-team deal and promptly gave him a contract extension.
………………………………

Good for him…it will be interesting to see what happens when Hamilton is on first and Hanigan is behind the plate!?*

Are the Reds even slated to meet Tampa Bay this coming season?

April 11-13th. In Cincinnati.

The Reds’ window for making a big trade “may be closing,” MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon writes. The team should make a few moves in January, however, and could add a free agent bat if a discount price can be found.
……………………………….
If the Reds are through dealing, there is little chance that they can compete with the likes of the Dodgers, Nationals and, I hate to say it, the Cards. And, those are just the teams that appear superior in the NL; there are a few monsters in the AL as well.

Shame we don’t have wallets the size of the empire state building.

Poll: Which Team Will Sign Nelson Cruz?
By Charlie Wilmoth [December 29 at 4:45pm CST]
2013 is about to become 2014, and free agent slugger Nelson Cruz still hasn’t found a home. Today, Rangers GM Jon Daniels said he does not expect Cruz to return to his club. Cruz’s reported desire for a $75MM contract could be an impediment for many teams. With that in mind, let’s look at Cruz’s market.
(excerpt about the Reds)
Reds. The Reds tried to trade Brandon Phillips for Brett Gardner, and they showed interest in Carlos Beltran, indicating that they aren’t completely satisfied with their outfield in the wake of Choo’s departure. That they never appeared to be serious players for Choo and that they’ve tried, unsuccessfully, to clear Phillips’ salary might indicate that they won’t be able and/or willing to spend on Cruz, however.

Thanks for the great blog. I’ve been very disappointed/discouraged with the lack of effort the Reds have made to improve the team. We might very well drop out of play off contention this year.

We’re holding off on tickets!

Holding off on going to games solely because you think they “might” drop out of playoff contention? C’mon Red Rob, support them regardless of their off-season moves and the place in the standings.

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