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Red Reposter - Tony LaWhinerussa

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Hey Reposter, 'sup?  It's been a while.

When we were kids growing up
my sister and I had a predictably (the word "animosity" has no common adjective form) relationship. We argued about everything. If I said it was cold outside, she would snap "no it isn't" and head out the door without a coat. I would often sing a song to the tune of Bryan Adams' "I Do It For You" that would go: You know it's true/ Everything I do/ Kasey would argue. To which she would scream "I would not!!"

 And so it goes with Tony LaRussa re: whining. After Albert Pujols whined about the mid-afternoon start time to Game 2 (the shadows made hitting difficult), LaRussa responded to media criticism saying, "If you don't answer the question, then you're not cooperative. If you do answer the question, you come out like excuse-makers," La Russa asserted. "That really (angers me). If there's one thing this team is not it is excuse-makers. ... The only thing that can not be ignored, it can be dangerous." He later added, "Anyone who would accuse this team of whining has not been around it. That's an insult to me and to them." Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa.

Fay says contract talks with Francisco Cordero and Brandon Phillips will likely happen in the next week or so
He gives the impression that the Reds need both, but unfortunately don't have the cash to pay them. He argues that Coco, although he's been really expensive, has stabilized the bullpen in his four years in Red. He may not be worth $12 mil, but is he worth $8 mil? $6 mil?

As for Ric Ocasek (front man of The Cars --> beep beep --> Brandon Phillips), he says Dan Uggla's 5-year $62 mil deal is probably what Phillips will be looking for, and that is a ton of shamolla. As a rule, I eschew signing players to long-term extensions following a career-best season. Teams end up paying players as if their very best performance were their norm, and it almost always ends in financial tragedy (Vernon Wells is probably the prime example). As much as I love Ralph Kramden (Jackie Gleason --> Art Carney --> Carnie Wilson --> Wilson Phillips --> Brandon Phillips), this team cannot afford to pay him as if he were an annual 6 WAR player when he's really more like a 3-4 WAR player. It's really tough, because he's such a great guy. I want him to be a Red until he retires. But unfortunately he had his best season at precisely the wrong time.  Economics is cold.  

Joe Nuxhall is not among the finalists this year for the Ford Frick Award
which means, yet again, the 3B coach is giving the hold sign as Nuxy rounds third and heads for the Hall. Skip Caray, the dullard's Thom Brennaman, is among those nominated this year. I just can't what the who even...

Blog Red Machine reviews the performance of the 3B collective
I was surprised to see that Miguel Cairo got the most PAs on the list. Even more surprising was how well he hit. What is not surprising about all of this is that the Reds didn't make the playoffs this year. As admirable as Cairo's performance was, we cannot count on anything like that for next year. Hopefully among Juan Francisco, Todd Frazier, and Cairo the Reds can find a suitable "in case of Rolen, break glass" alternative.

Here are a few notes from yesterday's FayChat
When asked if the Reds were worried about how poorly Devin Mesoraco hit in September, Fay responded that it was too small a sample size to worry about. He then turned around and said Chris Heisey could see more time in CF next season in part because the team was 13-2 when he started there this season. /brainsplosion

Also interesting was this little diddle regarding Yasmani Grandal: "He'll start at Louisville. The Reds would be fine with him playing there the whole year. But it might be a good idea to have Mesoraco take some balls in the left this spring. He runs well for a catcher and they could have a log jam there in a few years."

John Sickels reviews the performances of his pre-season Top 50 hitting prospects
As you might recall, the Reds had a decent number of kids on his list, with Devin Mesoraco, Yonder Alonso, Billy Hamilton, and Yasmani Grandal ranked from #15 to #23 (all received B+ grades). Here's his summation of Hamilton's season: "Hit .278/.340/.360 with 52 walks, 133 strikeouts, and an incredible 103 steals in 550 at-bats in Low-A. Raw, but likely the fastest man in professional baseball and he knows how to use it."