Much nothing was done yesterday on the first day of the Winter Meetings
Walt Jocketty says they haven't discussed Zack Greinke with the Royals. That's kind of a pipe dream anyway, as Greinke is due $27 mil over the next 2 seasons and all indications are the Reds only have a few million to spend this winter. Still, one would hope Banana Bob would okay stretching the payroll a bit for a game-changer like Greinke.
But if we were to speculate (and who the hell doesn't like to do that?), the Brewers deal to get Shaun Marcum could be a decent indicator to what kind of deal it would take to get Greinke. The Brewers sent top prospect Brett Lawrie to the Blue Jays as compensation. Marcum is obviously no Greinke, but they are both two years away from free agency. If two years of Shaun Marcum is worth one top-25 prospect, one can begin to fill in the blanks of what two years of Zack Greinke would be worth.
I would say that Aroldis Chapman and Devin Mesoraco are both easily top-25, maybe even top-15 prospects, and Yonder Alonso may be more of a top-40 guy (/Rick Dees'd). Trouble is, the Royals system is stacked, like Gemma Atkinson stacked. They have a logjam at 1B/DH with guys like Billy Butler, Kila Kaiaaaaooooggggaaaa, and big deal Eric Hosmer. They have Wil Myers at catcher, who may be the one catching prospect in baseball who is more highly-regarded right now than Meso. And Aroldis Chapman isn't going anywhere for anyone, not even Zack Greinke. So a deal for Greinke would most likely have to be built around our young major-league pitching. That likely means parting with two of Travis Wood, Mike Leake, and Homer Bailey, plus a third prospect. I'm not saying I wouldn't do it, but boy oh boy, that would be a head-scratcher.
Buried in this post is the news that the Reds have offered Miguel Cairo a major-league deal. The Pharaoh was a key bench player on last year's division-winning squad (cue guitar solo), but if it's anything more than a million bucks it's probably not a good idea. I just don't see him repeating a career year. Plus, my buddy Joe Inglett is available and he would make a terrific addition to the bench.
Dusty talks Chappy
"He has No. 1 starter stuff. But he has, like I said, No. 1 bullpen stuff, too," Baker said to laughter. "We have seen guys go back and forth, but we wanted to keep him hopefully in one area versus, you know, back and forth. Because with a guy throwing that hard, I mean, is he more valuable to us every fifth day or, you know, every other day so to speak? Plus a lot of that had to do with the fact that we are deep in starters now. Either way, he's a tough situation. Because it was like when I had Billy Swift. He could be our best reliever and our best starter at the same time. So you've got to choose one or the other."
What. In. The. Holy. Hell. I swear to gumbo, if Aroldis Chapman is a reliever for the 2012 Reds, I will totally lose it. I will lose it so hard you won't find it for weeks. Starters are just far more valuable than relievers. If Dusty messes this up it will be an unforgivable sin. Which sucks, because he has come a long way in gaining my confidence. I was one of the most vocal detractors when he was hired, but he has made me a believer (division titles make people say the craziest things).
Redleg Nation writes an open letter to Walt Jocketty
imploring our beloved leader to bring us home a new left fielder for Christmas. Yesterday's Reposter Poll asked you what the #1 priority is this off season, and you voted "new LF" at #2 behind long-term deals for Joey Votto and Jay Bruce. I don't know who out there (aside from Carl Crawford) best fits our team's needs (Jacoby Ellsbury? Matt Kemp?), but I think it's fairly evident that Jonny Gomes just ain't gonna cut it. So I guess we'll see if the Christmas Spirit embiggins our souls this Yuletide.
Dontrelle Willis was worth 15.2 fWAR from '03-'06
I guess that's pretty cool. But he's been awful since then. Like, so awful that the Secretary of Transportation declared that Dontrelle should no longer be called "D-Train" because it was adversely affecting ridership on Amtrak. But he's only 27. Yeah, Twenty-Seven. Like, the same age as Joey Votto. So it doesn't take much to understand how psychological issues could be at the root of his downfall. He may never be a 3-WAR starter ever again, but first thing's first and he's gonna try to be a decent middle-reliever.
P-Doc has a great piece on the future of Drew Stubbs
Should he be leading off or hitting lower in the order? It's a great read so go check it out, but here are a few quotes that had me noddin' my head like "yeah": "Says Jay Bruce, "He’s not a top-of-the-order guy. When he cuts down on strikeouts (168, sixth in the NL), which he will, he’s Jayson Werth, but faster and maybe with a couple less homers.’’ "Stubbs hit .308 in August and September, after a .213 July, with eight of his 22 home runs. Which made 2011 one worth Drew-ling over."
Aaron Harang formally signed a one-year deal with his hometown Padres for $3.5 mil
It carries a mutual option for 2012. I venture to say there isn't a decent soul in Cincinnati that hates the Harangutan, and I'm confident that I speak for all of Red Reporter in wishing him nothing but the best with the Padres. He did so much not just for the Reds, but for the whole city of Cincinnati, that we owe him nothing less than our admiration. I will certainly miss the big fella. Here's to Aaron Harang. Raise your glasses, jerks.