25 for 25: Reds

I am actually a St. Louis Cardinals fan, but over the past few months I've been working on a roster for each franchise in the National League, composed of players over the last 25 years. The way this works is that I pick one player from each season and I have to fill out an entire roster (2 catchers, 2 infielders at each position, 6 total outfielders, 5 starting pitchers, 4 relievers). I can't take more than one player for each year, I have to take one player each season even in the bad years, and I can't use the same player for multiple positions. If a player played the majority of his games at one position, I can't use that season for another position even if he's played it before. And I used basically minimums of 60 innings or 250 PA's (prorated for strike seasons).

The interesting part with this are the decisions that have to be made, whether it is, "Dang there are some really nice outfielder seasons to choose from, who gets left out?", or, "Does this team even have two decent catchers in a 25-year span?", or, "This guy had so many great years - which one do I choose?" Sometimes a great year gets left out, sometimes a fluke, partial season gets tabbed for the team.

I actually posted the entire NL East, NL West and NL Central on the SB Nation site Viva El Birdos, as well as a fully researched extended version for the Cardinals from 1910 to 1934 and (eventually) a post just like this at all of the other NL sites. You're welcome to pick apart my choices and make suggestions of your own. I'm looking forward to hearing from everybody.

P.S. After completing the whole process and receiving comments last week, I realized that I should have utilized both BP's WARP1 and B-R's WAR numbers instead of just WARP1 along with Win Shares and OPS+/ERA+. (Fangraphs' WAR numbers only go back to 2002, so that would not have helped.) There were a couple players with differences of 2+ wins, so there might be a couple head-scratchers. My apologies.

C – Bo Diaz (1986), Jason LaRue (2001)

1B – Sean Casey (2004), Joey Votto (2009)

2B – Bret Boone (1998), Pokey Reese (1999)

3B – Chris Sabo (1990), Aaron Boone (2002)

SS – Barry Larkin (1991), Felipe Lopez (2005)

OF – Eric Davis (1987), Kevin Mitchell (1994), Reggie Sanders (1995), Ken Griffey Jr (2000), Jose Guillen (2003), Adam Dunn (2007)

SP – Danny Jackson (1988), Greg Swindell (1992), Jose Rijo (1993), Bronson Arroyo (2006), Edinson Volquez (2008)

RP – John Franco (1985), Rob Dibble (1989), Jeff Brantley (1996), Jeff Shaw (1997)

Notable exceptions: Joe Oliver (1992), Benito Santiago (1995), Hal Morris (1994), Ron Oester (1985), Tony Fernandez (1994), Dave Parker (1985), Kal Daniels (1988), Paul O’Neill (1991), Pete Schourek (1995), Aaron Harang (2007), Danny Graves (2000)

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