"Sure, sure, that's fine. Another one-run loss. A desecrated bullpen. Serenity now. Aum. Shanti Mantra. Heh heh. Hold it together now and keep thinking about your energy efficient house and the awesome vinyl records you probably have there."
Not much news, good or otherwise, in Reds Country as we look down the double barrel of the final two home games. A winning record is rendered impossible with just one more loss, so with an active - or at the very least confusing - offseason expected, it's hard not to start gathering kindling for the Hot Stove.
Baseball Prospectus' "Kiss'Em Goodbye" series looks at the Reds
Complete with projections of next year's lineup and rotation.
Doug over at Reds Minor Leagues rolls out his Organizational All Stars
Mesoraco rightly takes top catcher honors, though Doug says Grandal was a close second. The Jazz Man (or Yasmanian Devil, if you prefer) has only 190 PAs above A+, but it's still a little bit nutso that the Reds have another backstop in their system who's reached AAA and has the shown similarly good-for-any-position-not-just-catcher offensive skills (.303/.401/.488 minor league line).
Alonso (ankle) will likely be a pinch-hitter the rest of the way
Alonso originally injured his ankle on a bothced play in early August that helped spell the premature, temporary death of his outfielding career.
FanGraphs has a spirited defense of Single Season UZR
For the stat enthusiast, UZR (Michael Lichtman's Universal Zone Rating) is almost always qualified by saying that multiple seasons of defensive data are necessary to make any judgments. UZR takes about 3 years to stabilize and as Lichtman himself puts it: "a player's true talent UZR or what you might expect from him in the future is as close to that one-year number as it is to zero." But UZR can still be said to give a useful account of a season's defense, even if it doesn't approximate true talent level or relies too heavily on a series of uncharacteristic plays concentrated in one season.
The Reds' leaders in UZR were all infielders: Phillips, Votto, Rolen, Janish then Cozart. Standardizing for games played (UZR/150), it's: Phillips, Lewis, Janish, Votto, Cairo. Taking human observation and horse sense into account, it's pretty clear the Reds' infield this year was excellent. And that Brandon Phillips is the best defender on the team.
Red Reposter News FROM PURGATORY: Cardinals claw way to 2 1/2 back in Wild Card Race
Or Hell, I guess. Is this Hell? I think this is hell.