Who knew Dusty Baker was such an Existentialist?
"Dusty Baker sifts through the pile of medical reports on his desk and laughs — laughs out loud and shakes his head..." "People keep wondering about our training methods," Baker said. "We’ve only had one leg injury (Willy Taveras). What does training have to do with concussions (Rolen, Hanigan) and broken wrists (Jay Bruce) and neck discs (Mike Lincoln) and knees needing cleaned up (Ramon Hernandez) and torn labrums (Wilkin Castillo, Danny Richar)? "If we were having a bunch of torn ligaments and torn hamstrings, then maybe you could question things," he said. "But you can’t. It’s just bad luck. And we’ve had a lot of it this year, both medically and in breaks on the field." I agree that injuries have certainly hampered this team this year, but realistically speaking it's only knocked the team down from a 78-win team to a 68-win team. I really hope this "injuries" BS doesnt turn into an excuse to push for next season. Oh, too late...
Will Carroll thinks the Reds, with Aaron Harang, Johnny Cueto, and Edinson Volquez
all on the shelf, will use September as audition time to evaluate the team's weaknesses. I wish I had his confidence. As we discussed on RRAD last night, we'd like to see pitchers like Matt Maloney, Sam LeCure, and Travis Wood given a chance to strut their stuff at the big league level this September, but "for integrity of the races" I think Dusty is going to run out Justin Lehr and Kip Wells instead.
TangoTiger has opened up his Fan Scouting Report
For those of you unfamiliar with this, he gets a bunch of fans (just like you!) to rate the players they have seen this season on the different aspects of their defensive prowess. He then compiles your surveys and averages out the numbers to get a read on a player's true defensive talents. It is one of the best tools out there for getting a feel for a player's defensive contributions, just as accurate as those new-fangled supercomputer advanced metrics. The thing is, you need a lot of fans (just like you!) to provide their input. The more the better. Being the dedicated Reds fans I know you are, you are exactly the kind of fan whose informed opinions matter the most. So head on over and do your duty.
Eli over at Daily Dish provides with this video of Buck Showalter's plan for realignment
We had a discussion about realignment about a month ago (find it here), but I'm not sure anyone's was as hair-brained as Buck's.
Dave at OMGReds went to the Bats-Mud Hens game on Sunday night
and witnessed Todd Frazier's first AAA home run. He says it was absolutely crushed, and wonders how far it traveled. He was also impressed with Juan Francisco, whose pet chupacabra reportedly attacked one of the ballpark vendors.
John Sickels has been reviewing his Top 20 Prospect Lists from this past offseason
He blurbs about how the top 20 have done so far this year, and has this to say in recap: "I think the Reds have a pretty decent farm system. There have been some disappointments, and I'm not sure yet how they are going to fit Alonso and Frazier into the lineup in the medium and long runs, but they have material to work with. They could use additional arms, and the 2009 draft took some good steps in that direction with Mike Leake, Brad Boxberger, and Donnie Joseph all capable of advancing quickly. They seem to like the toolsy Latin hitters with power potential but poor strike zone judgment."
Steve at RLN recaps the ten best trades in Reds history
No surprise, #1 is Joe Morgan. Every time I hear his name nowadays I get really down, because I wish I could have seen him play. At this point, I dont know if I could recognize good baseball if it slapped me the face.
Eric Davis thinks today's draft picks have an inflated sense of entitlement
"It’s unfortunate that kids are demanding major league contracts, that (they) have to be in the big leagues at a certain time," he said. "What ever happened to your performance dictating that? There’s no sense of motivation, determination. That’s why you have a lot of guys who come to the big leagues who aren’t ready or can’t play."
Tyler Hissey at Dugout Central worries that Bob Castellini is turning into another George Steinbrenner, sans the cash
"Castellini says he has a plan. To an objective onlooker, though, it does not appear to be a sound one, and, from Cordero to now Rolen, he does not deserve any benefit of the doubt. The owner needs to trust his baseball operations staff to make the decisions, because he appears to be as involved as George Steinbrenner. Except his wallet does not run as deep."
Mike Leake will play in the Arizona Fall League this year
alongside a number of this year's top draft picks. Hopefully we'll also see guys like Yonder Alonso, Brad Boxberger, and the recovering Jay Bruce get some time out there too.
Ken Rosenthal says Alex Gonzalez had to approve the trade that sent him to the Red Sox (LOLZWTF!!)
apparently he had a 3-team no-trade clause (was anyone aware of this?) and the Red Sox were one of them.