Mark Sheldon has some quotes from last night's terrific game
I don't know about you, but I could watch a million games like that one. Bronson Arroyo was solid, Jay Bruce was unstoppable, and the game was pretty much in the bag within an hour. "It helped me be more relaxed. That's the biggest thing about hitting. You need to be relaxed up there. I guess that's how I'm supposed to feel all the time. Hopefully I can feel that, know what it's like and repeat it." -- Jay Bruce. He guesses he's supposed to feel that way all the time?? You mean to tell me that Jay Bruce has been nervous the whole time these past few years??? They should soak his head with a hose before every game.
"I just didn't have stuff. I came out of the 'pen knowing it was going to be a war. You feel sluggish sometimes and don't have a lot of zip on anything. Fortunately, I had some command. If you don't have one, you hope you have the other." -- Bronson Arroyo. Slyde mentioned in the game thread intro that we may be in a Badroyo cycle right now. This backs it up. I guess we're lucky to be facing the Diamondbacks, eh?
John Fay is having a chat with fans at noon today
If you have any questions you'd like answered by the Enquirer beat writer (wtf dropping EDR??/?), be sure to be over there by then.
MLBTR looks at potential free agents in the "innings eater" category
Of course, they still have an available option on Bronson Arroyo (and Aaron Harang), so they can just exercise that and get themselves an innings eater if they want one. If they don't want Arroyo though, there are some intriguing names on this list. Hiroki Kuroda, Ted Lilly, Kevin Millwood, and Javier Vasquez are all guys that I'm pretty confident could give us roughly what Bronson would, but the question is how much money would they want? Arroyo can be had for 1 year and about $13 mil. I don't think any of these guys are going to sign for less than $20 mil or so, so unless the Reds think any of these guys are going to be that much better than Bronson it's probably just easier to keep Bronson.
Fay sez via twitter that the club likely dropped Enerio Del Rosario instead of Aaron Harang
due to concerns about when they will pay Harang's $2 mil buyout for next season. I guess I can buy that. I'm not really that concerned about losing EDR. Right-handed middle relievers are the most prevalent species of ballplayer out there, so I'm pretty sure we can find a few more just like him if we need to.
I think keeping Harang is more about doing the right thing than worrying about the buyout. He may be washed up, but he's still a very well-respected and very accomplished member of the team and (more importantly) the player's union. Players may think twice about coming to a team that would so callously drop their Opening Day starter. Some may not worry about it, but I think it's better to do the honorable thing here. Baseball is a business, but it's not a business run by robots. Some important people might care about this kind of thing.
Now that Jay Bruce is back
and we have Willie Bloomquist, the need for a backup outfielder isn't nearly as pressing. Still, it would be very useful to have Laynce Nix and Jim Edmonds available. Fayplacement says both took batting practice yesterday and both looked "free and easy". Our two weeks in the wilderness seem to be over.
Remember when Jared Burton was heralded as the "closer of the future"?
Way back in '07 when both Burton and Josh Hamilton were ace rule V picks, it seemed like we had a key cog in rebuilding our beleaguered bullpen. I guess it's a sign of just how far we've come that such a talented pitcher spent the year in AAA. Burton struggled with fatigue early in the season, but was able to recover and put up some great numbers out of the Bats bullpen.
"I made the best of it and had a pretty good year," said Burton, who also spent time on the DL later in the year with a sore left oblique. "It was a long start of the season. I had a lot of doctor visits. Once they finally diagnosed the problem and I knew physically I was fine, I was able to move on, get my arm in shape and had a good year. "Once I got the medication and after a couple of weeks, I could tell a huge difference. All of my energy was there. Obviously when that comes, confidence and everything comes because you're a lot more comfortable." Good to see you back in the Bigs, Jared.
Daily Pitch is worried about the Reds
particularly about our closer. There isn't much new here, but I found this quote from Andrew McCutchen pretty revealing. If you recall, McCutchen was the one who hit the go-ahead double off Cordero on Sunday: "I knew what he threw. I've faced him a few times," McCutchen said. "All the pitches were sliders. After you've seen it a few times, you recognize it out of his hand. He left it up and I got the good part of the bat on it." It sounds to me like Cordero is tipping his pitches. He only has two of them, so it's not like he has a lot of variety anyway, but if rookies like McCutchen can spot this stuff then it's probably been happening a lot this season. I hope Bryan Price is reading this. He's gotta get this cleaned up.
Redleg Nation has officially joined the ESPN SweetSpot family of blogs
Congratulations to all the folks over at RLN://www.ESPN!