11 more runners left on base last night
and the team was 1-9 in ABs with runners in scoring position. I've been incredibly patient with this shit so far this year because I think it's mostly a function of luck. I don't really think clutch is a skill, or at least one that can be measured in a few hundred at-bats over a few months. But tonight I lost all perspective and understanding.
Early in the year the starting pitching couldn't keep it together. Now that the starters are throwing rocks, the bats have fallen silent. I've been hopeful that things will eventually fall into place, but we are quickly running out of time. I guess it's a blessing that while they went forever without winning back-to-back games, they've still managed to stay in the race. At least they aren't the Mariners, right?
Cold comfort. I actually lost sleep over this. I was up at four this morning hating Jay Bruce for proving Thom Brenneman right. Again. I ended up watching Table for Three on Showtime, a movie Jason McKiernan of AMC called "one of the most unnecessary movie experiences one will ever have." It had that guy that played Superman in that movie that lost all that money. It didn't make me feel any better.
Scott Rolen hit the DL this weekend
He's had three surgeries on his shoulder and the long season has proven too much, once again. He deals with regular pain and such every day with the shoulder, but this one was different than just the every day stuff. "This last time on the off day, I realized that something else was going on," he said. "It wasn't the normal thing. I was having a hard time picking my kids up. That's almost my barometer. My son weighs 30 pounds. I'm 6-4, 250. I should be able to handle this one."
In his stead, Todd Frazier intends to prove that he is the future of the position for the Reds. I want Rolen back and healthy and leading and smashing doubles as much as anyone, but I don't think I'm being too hasty in wanting Frazier to take off with this thing. My hope was that Rolen's slow start was just that, and that the warm summer months would see a return of his power and walk rate. Now that we are well passed the halfway point, my hope is quickly fading into resignation.
I don't want to, but I'm afraid it could be time to accept that Scott Rolen's Reds may no longer be. To his credit, Rolen says he's not ready to throw in the towel. His shoulder was worse in '08, so he's still confident he can come back healthy and productive. He's a good guy, that's fer sher.
Chris Heisey didn't play in last night's game
after getting an MRI on his shoulder earlier in the day. The exam was negative, but he was still a bit sore. He ran into the wall on Sunday night with his glove arm extended trying to make a catch that Drew Stubbs ultimately made. I don't think it's serious, but it's definitely something to keep an eye on going forward.
Q: Could the Reds package Edinson Volquez and Drew Stubbs in a deal with San Diego for Heath Bell and Ryan Ludwick? — Mike, Houston
A: They could, but they won’t. Do you think San Diego wants Volquez? Or Stubbs? Other teams have scouts and they’ve seen Volquez’s act and they’ve seen Stubbs striking out. They don’t want another team’s problem children. If the Padres trade closer Bell, my guess is that he’ll end up under the arch, and I mean the St. Louis Arch, not McDonald’s.
Oh man, what the hell? Sometimes I forget how insulated I am here at Red Reporter. You fine folks are really the only people I talk to about baseball, as I have few friends who give a damn about it. And, for the most part, you all are decent, level-headed, logical folks. So I don't think I have a good read on how the general populace sees things. So it really surprises me to see such derision towards a guy like Stubbs.
I would not trade him straight-up for Heath Bell right now, but Hal seems to think the Padres would be the ones laughing. I mean, I get the frustration with Volquez. I'm right there with you, brother. But I think a number of teams would be interested in him, including the Padres. And Ludwick sucks. But man, labeling Stubbs a "problem child" all because of the strikeouts is just insane. He also gets on base at an above-average clip, hits 20 homers, steals 30 bags, and plays Gold Glove defense at a premium position. I'm not sure what it is with some people in always focusing on the negative things a players does rather than the positive things. It must be exhausting though.
After Kenny Rosenthal reported that a number of teams are interested in Edinson Volquez
Craig Calcaterra likened his situation to that of Colby Rasmus. "interesting talent, but at his nadir, and thus the Reds wouldn’t be able to get much value in return for him." I dunno, if the Rockies really are interested in him as a piece in a deal for Ubaldo Jimenez then I am all up ons that. But I think the real takeaway from this is that while we are all frustrated with his struggles so far this year, it's important to remember that he's still an incredible talent and one that shouldn't be written off just yet. The most important thing that talent grants you is time.
Peter Gammons had an interesting tweet yesterday
regarding the availability of prospects. He claims that any deal for Ubaldo Jimenez that may be made will not include Devin Mesoraco, Billy Hamilton, and two others. Now, I think you can read this a few different ways. He may be saying that the deal will not be Mesoraco, Hamilton, +2, which is to say that any of these players are available, but just not all of them together. Or he may be saying that the Reds have a total of four untouchables in Mesoraco, Hamilton, and two others.
I think the first reading is correct, as I can't imagine the Reds having as many as four untouchables in a trade for a guy like Jimenez. This Jimenez talk just will not die though, so I'm inclined to believe that the Rockies are at least considering it. I don't know if I can take it any longer though. The Reds either have to make it happen now or just shut up about it. The suspense is killing me.
Three truths and another, unlisted truth: Zack Cozart
Cozart and wife Chelsea have known each other since they were in the first grade.
Cozart was born in Memphis, Tenn., which also is the birthplace of former Reds catcher Joe Oliver.
Cozart is nicknamed "The Coz", but he is unrelated to Bill Cosby. They spell and pronounce their names differently.
In high school, basketball was Cozart's favorite sport to play.
C-ing Red gives us two mystery players
and asks us to decide which one we would rather have in the lineup. Neither is all that good, but it may surprise you which one is better. I won't ruin the surprise for you, but I will say that you will not be pleased.
Grant Brisbee's power rankings is becoming one of my favorite weeklies
This week's installment ranks the teams based on their trade deadline strategies. The Reds rank a solid 8th, with this explanation: "Cincinnati plans on being jerks and not deciding whether or not they're buyers or sellers until five minutes before the trading deadline. If they're sellers, they plan on not trading anyone important, instead choosing to light cigars from productive catchers they've lit on fire."