Hall o' Famer Hal thinks the love affair between Dusty and Willy Taveras is over
Here's the way Hal puts it when he asked Dusty about giving Ramon Hernandez the start last night: "He’s worked hard to get to this point and I like to reward guys who work hard to get back in there to play." Just reading between the lines here, one suspects Taveras did not work hard enough to get back, not the way Hernandez did after having knee surgery July 21. Also sounds as if Baker wouldn’t mind if Taveras was not back with the team next season. He didn’t say that, but when a manager brings up Wally Pipp, that’s Serious Business." That's one big sigh of relief.
Jeff Moore at Dugout Central asks "Who would you rather have?" among Max Scherzer, Johnny Cueto, and Joba Chamberlain
He ultimately chooses Scherzer, and honestly I cant argue with him. All three of these guys have great potential. But I think he shortchanges JC a bit based on the players' ERAs. Still a neat read though.
I just love Joey Votto so much
Hal asked him about hitting .300. His average now is .308 with 11 games to play. He said, "Most players realize (that .300) is one of those pretty stats that a lot of guys take a ton of pride in because ever since baseball started, it has always been a benchmark. So I’m no different than anybody else, but I do realize it’s definitely not the most important stat." He is not Hal Morris.
Mike Lincoln update
He threw from the mound for the second time and felt good. He couldnt locate his pitches, but it seems he should be ready to go by Spring Training. I hate that the Reds have $2.5 mil guaranteed to this guy for next year because it likely means he'll take the roster spot of a young reliever with some promise like Carlos Fisher, but you cannot help but admire the dude's dedication. He's had two Tommy John's and now a cervical disk replacement surgery. Holy crap.
Doug Gray wraps up his minor league season reviews with Louisville
He tabs Drew Stubbs and Matt Maloney as his top players.
THT has a neat little discussion about guys who hit .300 but manage an OPS+ below 90
Hal Morris did it for the Royals in '98. He's not Joey Votto.
Big League Stew reviewed the Reds season now that they are officially out of it
Here's what they say they need to do to be better in 2010: "The news in Cincinnati could be much, much better. Dusty Baker is probably back for another season due to his $3.5 million salary and Buster Olney is quoting scouts as saying the Reds are the furthest team away from contention in the National League. Most of the team's payroll is locked up in four guys (Rolen, Cordero, Harang and Arroyo) and the loss of Volquez is going to be felt as Walt Jocketty attempts to fix that rotation. Still, the Reds have some solid pieces to build around and they should best hope that we can point to one or two guys at the end of 2010 and label them as stars without hesitation. Some jumps definitely need to be made."
The Smithsonian Museum (hi Brendan!) has hung a picture of Tommy Lasorda in the National Portrait Gallery
The portrait measures 60 inches by 50 inches, just like Tommy!