Any new business? Janish's Reds pasted the Pirates 9-4. How about some old business? Consider this a semi-open thread to better digest the 24-hour news cycle.
John Fay pens an muckraking expose on "Roster Madness"
Which if I'm not mistaken is a 1930s exploitation film in which the Washington Senators put 41 players on their 40 man roster. Both Isringhausen and Dickerson will have to bump someone off the 40-man to join the team - and the Reds would like to use Miller as a third catcher in September. While I was asleep at the wheel, Corky was removed from the 40-man roster. Carlos Fisher, Micah Owings and Phillipe Valiquette head the list of players who could be outrighted, though it doesn't seem like a great time to shed pitching depth. Too early too tell - and certainly unfortunate - the newly-injured Russ Springer could provide some flexibility if released or placed on the 60-day DL.
Mike Leake is in the thick of it
Leake suffered a brutal inning Tuesday night, exacerbated by a Scott Rolen error and a disquieting blow to the back of Andrew McCutchen's helmet. But McCutchen's OK, says the Post-Gazette. Leake is the midst of a nose-dive, but he seems to have his head about him. The lack of overpowering stuff can mean Leake's margin for error is slim and his self-awareness could be both an asset and a liability: "I’m not saying I wasn’t thinking about it [hitting McCutchen]" Leake said. "I was trying not to and go after the next hitter. I threw some pitches I shouldn’t have thrown. But it’s done now." I have trouble imagining Leake's pitching IQ not allowing him to correct course, but given his inning limitation, he's emerging as a prime candidate to be replaced by Harang or Bailey in the rotation. Meanwhile, Dusty was so flustered he dropped his articles: "You could tell Leake was shook up," Baker said. "That led to big inning."
Cabrera officially placed on the DL with oblique injury
Cabrera could be out for a month to six weeks. Given the lack of true shortstop depth on the 40-man, this development is not to be brushed aside. Baker sez: "And right now probably [Miguel] Cairo's my super utility man right now -- third, short, second, first. And we got Francisco probably [spelling] Scotty [Rolen] at third and trying to work out some at first base, too."
El Nino Destructor joins the big league club
I hate to sound like someone obsessed with a list of forty men, but in large part due to the fact that Zach Cozart is not on that list, Juan Francisco got the call yesterday. The move still makes sense, shortstop or no, as Francisco was the best available bat to have on the bench and still keep enough infield reserves. I’d be a little bit surprised if Nix was bumped for Dickerson, but it's possible that END is getting an audition to play the Nix role, possibly with an eye to the playoffs. Francisco could probably hit about the same as Nix off the bench, but he has the added benefit of being able to back up Rolen. Sort of.
Daugherty refuses to answer his own question, "Why not Manny Ramirez to the Reds?"
What in the heck???? The issue here is not whether Manny would be a boon to the offense (he would), but if it would be even in the realm of the possible for the Reds to take on Manny's remaining salary, give up the necessary prospects and weather the clubhouse fallout of letting Manny Be Manny in place of (in this already tortured hypothetical), the lovable Gomes. Daughtery has a solution to sidestep that problem: Put him in leftfield, move Jonny Gomes to right and Dickerson to center, and let’s go. I love flights of fancy - and having Manny would be dynamite - but short of putting him at short, moving Janish to first and benching Votto, this about the most suboptimal way to find a place for him. There, I said it, suboptimal. I apologize to my as-yet-to-be-conceived children.
Frangraphs takes a look at Miguel Cairo's Unexpected Utility
Most of us knocking around this site, myself included, have some word-eating to do: (H)e’s made the most of his opportunity in 2010, and the Reds are all the better for it. It’s not every day that you see a utility player with the sixth highest wRAA on the team.
Redleg Nation gives it up for Reds' July pitching
And the guys on the mound weren't bad either. How does that joke work? Too late to go back, I haven't learned about the "delete" key in Mavis Beacon yet.
The Cincinnati Reds had their best pitching month of the year (as measured by ERA and WHIP) in the month of July. The starting rotation had their second best month of 2010 in July (10-7, 3.43 ERA.
Leake's workload management is an inexact science
Leake is purportedly unlikely to be bullpen-ed, at least during the regular season:
Price, Baker and the Reds kicked around the idea of moving Leake to the bullpen to keep his innings down, but they decided against it. With eight more scheduled off-days remaining this season, including three in September, the club believes it can spread out Leake's starts to reach the target innings.
I can easily envision that plan changing if Leake's struggles continue, while start-skipping throws him off his rhythm.
The now apparently injured Russ Springer was a Big Red Machine fan
And may also have an axe to grind with the Cardinals . He may be a 40-something ROOGy, but he's definitely got the bona fides to play for the Reds.