Red Reposter - Three back of three

  • Stubbs' swing secures series win
    Drew Stubbs' walk-off HR last night came on a pitch that he wasn't supposed to hit, according to losing pitcher Scott Linebrink"That's the M.O. on him -- fastballs down and away. That's how we've pitched him every series we've played them. We executed the pitch; he just hit a pitch he's not supposed to."  He's been hitting a lot pitches since the ASB, slashing 304/429/522.  His bat will be key if the Reds make a push for the postseason.  As it stands, they're three games behind three teams tied at the top of the Division.  The Reds now host the Mets for four games, with Mike Leake squaring off against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey tonight.
  • No surgery, injections planned for Rolen
    Scott Rolen's strained shoulder landed him on the 15-day DL on Friday. The good news is, it shouldn't require surgery, which he already had in 2005. The other good news is that we now get to see Todd Frazier. If Frazier acquits himself well for the next couple of months, he could find himself getting regular playing time with the Reds next year.
  • The Coz goes to the DL; Janish returns
    The Reds also placed Zack Cozart on the 15-day disabled list yesterday with a hyperextended left elbow. Paul Janish was called up, under different circumstances then he probably imagined. He started off horribly in Louisville (1 for his first 22) but recovered to hit .256 in 43 ABs.  Baker says he will "mix and match" Edgar and Janish. 
  • The trade deadline is this Sunday night
    John Fay rounds up some of the weekend's rumo(u)rs. CBS reports that the Reds are one of six NL teams in on Carlos Beltran, who admirably won't waive his no-trade for any team in the lesser league.  Last Thursday, Kenny Rosenthal talked to Walt and asked him to identify the team's biggest need. "A hitter," Jocketty said. A leadoff man? A middle-of-the-order slugger? "All of the above," Jocketty said, chuckling.
  • Last night marked a rare Reds win on ESPN,
    as they have seemingly lost their last twenty nationally televised contests. ESPN brought analyst Barry Larkin along, and Barry offered his thoughts on the Reds and the trade deadline. "I don't think one piece is going to make that big of a difference.... [T]hey're going to have to overtake three teams. I don't think you mortgage the future of the team just to try to win today, when we've still got 60-some games left to play."
  • Johnny Cueto is one of the best surprises of the National League thus far
    so sayeth the Platoon Advantage. "Nobody’s talking about the fact that Johnny Cueto ... has suddenly become a groundballer, which has been an exceptionally good development given Cincinnati’s NL leading defense (.713 defensive efficiency)... [A] shift in pitching style to induce more grounders is a strategy that has become increasingly popular in 2011. And no one is doing it better than Cueto right now."  C-ing Red takes a closer look at Johnny's pitch selection to answer how Cueto has made the transformation.  "Cueto appears to be throwing a LOT more two seam fastballs. Specifically, from about 30% last year to 40% this year. Although the data had some unidentified fastballs in 2010 that might account for part of the difference, that's still pretty huge."
  • 10,000 wins coming this year?
    It's trickier to determine then you might think.  The Red Stockings played the American Association from 1882-1889, before joining the NL.  If you count those years, the Reds' overall records is 9965-9670.  With 61 games remaining this year, the Reds will need to play above .500 ball if they want to keep their playoff chances alive and reach the 10k win summit. 
  • FanGraphs Q&A - Chili Davis
    Not Reds related at all, just an interesting and candid conversation with Chili Davis, professional hitter. For instance: "DL: How prevalent was doctoring the ball in your era? CD: It was big, very big.... As far as the scuffed ball, I don’t know what ever happened to it. I don’t see it anymore."  Not only does Chili name names, but one of them is Nolan Ryan.
  • BtB has taken a long look at Player Volatility and found some interesting things
    For one, better players are generally more volatile.  One of the exceptions was Joey Votto's 2010 campaign, when he consistently produced at a very high level.  If you click on the graph you'll see that' he's clearly an outlier.  Brandon Phillips and Scott Rolen were also included in the study and found to have typical volatility in 2010.
  • Roberto Alomar went into Cooperstown as a Blue Jay yesterday
    Grant Brisbee looks back at the December 5, 1990 trade that brought him there. "The Padres sent the 22 year-old Alomar and Joe Carter to Toronto for Tony Fernandez and Fred McGriff. The names make it interesting right away -- that's a Hall-of-Famer, a could-be-Hall-of-Famer, and two Hall-of-Very-Gooders.... Man, a GM who makes a deal like that should go into the Hall of Fame too."  That man was Pat Gillick, who was also inducted yesterday.  I agree with Brisbee that we'll probably never see a challenge trade like that again.
  • John Erardi writes that next year could be the year for Larkin
    As I mentioned in January, Larkin will be the strongest returning candidate on a ballot without any strong newcomers.  The writers typically elect at least one player and haven't pitched a shutout since 1996.  Erardi points out that the Reds' inductees have come in two clusters:  "The induction of Reds into Cooperstown is exceedingly rare, except for a 1986-2000 stretch in which Ernie Lombardi, Johnny Bench, Joe Morgan, Tony Perez and Sparky Anderson entered the Hall. The Hall of Fame opened in 1936, but it wasn’t until 1962 that the first Reds – center fielder Edd Roush and manager Bill McKechnie – were inducted. Pitcher Eppa Rixey went in the following year, then it was a long wait until Lombardi."
  • Of course, there is one more former Red that generates some HOF talk
    During his induction speech yesterday, Philly writer Bill Conlin made his case for The Hit King. "One last thing: Please get Pete Rose off Main Street and into the Hall. Keep the ban for the compulsive gambler we met in the Dowd Report. But enshrine the guy who played with his hair on fire, the overachiever who lashed those 4,256 hits. Commissioner Selig, tear down that Ban!"   It's morning in Cooperstown.
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