Games 130-131: Braves at Reds

I’m taking Saturday and Sunday off. Back on Tuesday.

28 Comments

Braves at Reds; 7:10PM ET…

1. Billy Hamilton (S) CF

2. Skip Schumaker (L) LF

3. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B

4. Todd Frazier (R) 3B

5. Brayan Pena (S) C

6. Chris Heisey (R) RF

7. Jack Hannahan (L) 1B

8. Zack Cozart (R) SS

9. Mike Leake (R) P

Negron is making his own chance to play. His positives are that he can play 2B, SS and/or 3B. However, like any other rookie coming up through the ranks, he will be played as a “filler” rather than a regular or regular filler. And, his recent batting hasn’t been all that; since 8/17 played in 7 GM, 16 AB/4 H for a .250 BA. Will he do better in a full time role; do we really think we will find out this season?

Don’t think so. Hopefully next year he’ll come out of spring training with a positionthat’s his, to keep or lose. If he loses it I still see him as an asset.

I don’t blame Mark for taking some time off! After Thursday game I sat through, I would have been off yesterday.

Last time Mark took a few days off his post took on a life of its own. Let’s do it again this time. I know we have a lot of things to talk about concerning the past, present, and future of our team. Like Ken Rosenthal saying Jocketty will be back next year. I for one would like to see a whole new direction for the Reds, a fresh start as much as possible.

Why not, the Reds have taken several weeks off!

Article by Tyler Grote on Bleacher Report talked about solving the LF issue from within. No mention of Jesse Winker, but had Jason Bourgeois, Felix Perez, and Devin Mesaraco. According to John Fay the Reds are going to move Mesaraco around in spring training. Fay also said Mesaraco was willing to give it a try if asked.

The Reds’ will screw it up ! I can’t believe you put an all-star catcher in left field permanently ! But then again , it is the Reds!

It seems like the Reds don’t really beleive in Mes as their catcher of the future. Last year it was Hannigan and this year it’s the personal catcher issue and going into next year it’s “moving him around”. If you take a big bat from catcher and put in left field, how does that solve your need for another big bat?

If it wasn’t for Leake – would’ve been no run scored.

I was miffed that Price had Leake bunt with 2 strikes in his previous AB. Since AS Leake was .308/.357.615. 2 runs in 30 innings against the Braves. So sad.

Nice to see BP getting back to his playing groove.

Sunday’s lineup; Braves @ Reds…1:10PM ET

1. Billy Hamilton (S) CF

2. Todd Frazier (R) 3B

3. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B

4. Devin Mesoraco (R) C

5. Jay Bruce (L) RF

6. Ryan Ludwick (R) LF

7. Brayan Pena (S) 1B

8. Zack Cozart (R) SS

9. Alfredo Simon (R) P

I’m sure I sound like a broken record, but I would like to see Negron at SS. Cozart for the year .220/.270.293; since AS .183/.226/.257; last 7 .125/.222/.167. Great defense only goes so far, at least to me.

Simon pitched a very good game; I think the last two games he pitched have turned
around his minor problems. Cozart 3 for 4, 2 RBI. All around great game by Reds, even with another decline in the bull pen late.

Good team effort. Glad to see Cozart hit the ball hard multiple times in same game. Hope it continues. Bullpen was scary and Mes continues to struggle. A good day for Reds.

Good to hear that JJ Hoover was sent down to work on his pitches; thus far this season he has thrown the following:
66.0% Fast ball (93 mph)
21.3% Curve
10.4% Slider
2.3% Change
There was a time that he was nearly unhittable; hopefully he’ll find his stride.

Was surprised to see Corcino called up. Thought he was having a bad year. Must have gotten it together. He was a top prospect at one time. On the bright side Diaz looks like the real deal.

Price hopes Cozart’s defense isn’t overlooked
Excerpt: “Zack Cozart led all shortstops in Defensive Runs Saved (+21) and Ultimate Zone Rating (11.5) entering Sunday, according to Fangraphs.com. Price, who watches Cozart every day, has no subjective reason to disagree that Cozart has been the best defensive shortstop in baseball this season.”

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20140824&content_id=91190144&notebook_id=91190516&vkey=notebook_cin&c_id=cin

Reds: Offense cold since All-Star break
Much has changed for Cincinnati since the last time they met Chicago in July. The Reds won four of five games against the Cubs then, which pulled them within 2 1/2 games of the National League Central lead.

But they’re 14-25 since that series and are now 9 1/2 games out of first in the division.

Cincinnati’s struggles can be traced back to poor second-half hitting. Reds batters ranked last in the Majors in on-base percentage (.272) and 29th in runs (113) and batting average (.219) since the All-Star break before breaking out for 10 hits and five runs on Sunday.

“I don’t think there’s any quit in this team,” manager Bryan Price said. “We can play a lot better than we have.”

I would take the rest of the year off If I were you were…LOL

If the Reds lose a few more games we’ll be a lock for a top ten draft pick. Time to start playing Bakersfield players and let the “pros” practice their tooth pick twirling, dip spitting, crotch grabbing, girl watching techniques for the last 30 games or so.

Power Rankings of NL Central…as of 8/25…
#21 Cubs
#19 Reds
……………………………………..
Last Week: 2-5
It was another rough week for the Cincinnati Reds, who are now 12-24 since the All-Star break, slipping to 9.5 games back in the NL Central and six back for a wild-card spot in the process.
A dismal offensive attack is almost entirely to blame, as their .604 team OPS is worst in the majors in the second half, and they have averaged just 3.28 runs per game during that span.
First baseman Joey Votto is eligible to come off the disabled list a week from Thursday, but he has yet to begin baseball activities, and it remains to be seen if he will return at all this year.
“I wish I was on the field doing my part helping the team out,” he told C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer (via USA Today). “Unfortunately I’m not able to and I’m trying to get to a point where I can come back and help out and play like everyone’s used to me playing. I’m not there yet.”
Silver Slugger of the Week
3B Todd Frazier (7-for-25, 2 HR, 3 RBI, 4 R)
Top Pitcher of the Week
SP Mike Leake (2 GS, W, 13.2 IP, 10 H, 4 ER, 4 BB, 11 K)
…………………………………….
Pirates #15
Cards #10
Brewers #6

Depressing article, at least to me, by Mark on Reds website. Philips reaches 5-10 status today. Untradeable. Also, concerns the hole the Reds have dug for themselves with the long term, high $ contracts. Who gives a 10 year contract that goes into effect when the player is 30. In addition we have Philips until 2017 now regardless. Add Bailey and Bruce and you get a mess that has the potential to be the Reds undoing for a long time to come. I wonder if the Reds have insurance policies on these players that kicks when injuries keep them from playing. I hope so, because I beleive under the players agreement, that contract is still binding on the organization. I sure hope the self proclaimed “heart and sole” of the Reds performs to the standard upon which his contract was based.

Mr. C is a successful businessman. I seriously doubt that he would make unwise financial decisions regarding the Reds. I have a strong feeling that the ownership has thought of the many scenarios that could happen when they offered these contracts.

Here is Philips contract provisions…
6 years/$72.5M (2012-17) •signed extension with Cincinnati 4/10/12, replacing option year of previous deal
•12:$12.5M, 13:$10M, 14:$11M, 15:$12M, 16:$13M, 17:$14M
•award bonuses, including $75,000 for All-Star selection
•limited no-trade protection (may block deals to 10 clubs)
On the date the 10 year MLB/5 year Reds provision kicks in, Phillips has the right to
veto any attempted trade.
If a team would retain his contract and Phillips did not veto the trade, the trade would take place. Phillips clearly has worth, although his trade value is iffy right now, but when a team has a 2B player that goes down abruptly and they are in playoff contention, the idea that a trade could take place escalates. However, with that said, any team that would take Phillips contract has to be a financially sound and profitable team. Then, of course, Phillips would have to agree to the trade. Is a trade impossible? No, not at all. Will it happen? Who knows.

Sorry, said that wrong…Once again, Is a trade of Phillips possible? Yes, of course.
Depends on how it all plays out; needs, wants and team situations.

One other point about Phillips I gleaned over…Mark told the story of Phillip’s numbers over the course of the last several years, as follows:
“The years since the contract was signed haven’t been nearly as robust, as Phillips has been a .270/.314/.406 hitter from 2012-14. Last season, he notched a career-high 103 RBIs, but he had the good fortune of batting behind the league’s two leading hitters in on-base percentage, Joey Votto and Shin-Soo Choo. Phillips also played with a left forearm contusion after being hit by a pitch on June 1 of that season.

This season, Phillips is batting .269/.308/.383 with seven homers and 41 RBIs, and he returned last week after missing 33 games with a torn ligament in his left thumb. The injury, which required surgery, happened during a diving-catch attempt on July 9. The bad luck aside, he’s continued to be a dynamic fielder who is able to make some dazzling plays.

Looking at his advanced offensive statistics, Phillips had a 5.6 wins above replacement (WAR) figure and a 122 weighted runs created plus (wRC+ is an attempt to quantify a player’s total offensive value and measure it by runs) during his 2011 season, according to Fangraphs.com. His WAR and wRC+ have dipped each season since, to 2.6 and 91 last season and a 1.3 WAR with a 91 wRC+ this season.”
……………………………..

It appears to be a tough trade, and I think Jocketty would entertain any trades for Phillips as early as May or so this season, however with that said I don’t think I would not agree that the potential trade is impossible or improbable. After all, he is one of the finest 2B gloves in all of MLB; some say, magical. And, with a healthy body, he doesn’t hit all that bad either. As always, we’ll find out between now and opening season 2015.

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