Matt Klassen at FanGraphs likes the Votto deal for the Reds
He argues that while the average annual salary of $13 mil over 3 years means they are overpaying him in his first year of arbitration eligibility, it also means they are likely getting decent discounts in his second and third years.
Conversely, Ben Nicholson-Smith at MLBTradeRumors likes the deal for Votto
He didn't give up any of his free agent years and will earn more through his 3 arb years than his contemporaries Miguel Cabrera, Albert Pujols, Mark Teixeira, and Justin Morneau did. I can see the argument on both sides, which I guess is a good indication that it's a pretty fair deal for both sides.
To those of you who are skeptical of Votto's motivations
take heart. "It has nothing to do with getting to free agency, although some people took it that way," he said. "I can’t imagine playing anywhere else." Kid's a winner, babe.
Jocketty says they did talk about a longer extension with Votto
but it didn't add up. "The No. 1 thing for us was to avoid arbitration," Jocketty said. "This deal does that. We’ll revisit adding years before the end of the contract. We were more concerned with the arbitration years. It’s hard to predict where salaries will be." I think it's important to remember that in the 3rd year of Votto's deal, when he will be paid $17 mil, the Reds have only two other players under contract - Jay Bruce and Bronson Arroyo, who will only be paid $3 mil that year. It's very possible that the Reds will want to renegotiate with Votto before then and get a longer deal, making him the financial centerpiece of the club for years to come. But first things first: let's win us up a couple few World Series, eh?
On Friday, Joey Votto is going to ESPN HQ to shoot one of those zany "This is Sportscenter" spots
I hope they make a joke about how all the jerks at ESPN think he's a hockey player. He'll then go to NYC to accept his NL MVP trophy which will be presented to him by the last Red to win the NL MVP, Barry Larkin. Sunrise, sunset.
I'm thinkin' Arbies
The Reds have only two players who have yet to settle their arbitration contracts. Johnny Cueto wants $3.9 mil and Edinson Volquez wants $2 mil. The Reds are offering $3 mil and $1.3 mil, respectively. Those are decent but not insurmountable gaps, so I would assume they both get settled before going to the arbiter.
I want every one of you reading this
whether you are at your desk at work or, like Slyde, sitting at home watching the neighbor watch the afternoon news, to stand up and give Mack Jenkins the ovation of gratitude he deserves. Then click through and read the article. Or read the article first, if you are all about process and whatnot.
Jenkins is a company man, with the Reds now for 23 seasons. He's been a pitching coach at every level and has been the organization pitching coordinator since 2006. He's at least partially (if not mostly) responsible for the surge of homegrown pitchers the Reds won the the division with this past season.
"Part of developing a Travis Wood is developing a routine that begins as soon as he begins to play in pro ball," Jenkins said. "You can't do that when you start one week and the next week you're relieving...Each guy is different. On the same staff in Dayton we had Johnny Cueto, Carlos Fisher and Wood. All there workloads shouldn't be the same. Wood was a 150-pound high school pitcher from Arkansas. Fisher was coming out of college and he had a much more mature body. He could handle more pitches per game than Travis."
This is a terrific and inspiring read. It is really heartening to know your team is doing something right after so, so, so many years of doing it wrong. Oh, and here's a mind blow for you: This season, Johnny Cueto figures to make his 100th start as a Red. He'll be the first homegrown pitcher to do that since Brett Tomko.
It was 20,000 days a go today, "The Judge" taught the league to play
Frank Robinson made his debut on April 17, 1956, going 2-for-3 with a walk. Robinson hit a ground-rule double in his very first trip to the plate. Chris Jaffe doesn't hesitate to single out Frank as the greatest of the four, count 'em, four HOFers that debuted on that same day. Robinson, currently Senior VP of Baseball Ops in the Commissioner's Office, was recently hospitalized, but has since been released with a "clean bill of health." Long may you run, Frank.
nathan Mayo of MLB.com is listing his top 10 prospects at each position
Here is what he has to say about Yonder Alonso, #5 on his list of 1Bs: "Finally 100 percent following a hand injury, Alonso had a huge second half of 2010 after starting off the season sluggishly. By hitting .335/.415/.561 after the All-Star break, all of Alonso's hitting tools were on display: hitting for average, power and getting on base. The only problem now is finding a place for that bat. Joey Votto isn't going anywhere. Alonso has played some left field, but first is his better position."
I still really like Yonder, and it would be terrific if they gave him a shot in LF again, but methinks he's just too Donkeyish out there to get a good, extended look. He's still a top-notch bat though, so hopefully the Reds can find a good home for him in trade.
On Mayo's list of catchers
Devin Mesoraco ranks a surprising #5. Here's his blurb: "The 2007 first-round pick battled injuries over his first few years as a pro, and his middling performance kind of forced him off the prospect map. Then he broke out in '10, playing at three levels and showing the offensive capabilities the Reds thought he had when they drafted him out of high school. He can hit for average and power (.302/.377/.587 in '10) and while he still needs to work on his overall receiving, he's got an outstanding arm (he threw out 41 percent of basestealers last season). He finished last year in Triple-A, and that's where he'll start '11. Don't be surprised to see him in Cincy at some point this season." Also a surprise is the absence of Yasmani Grandal from the list. I like him better than a few guys Mayo has listed, but it's hard to complain about one man's list.