After a quick lil nap this week, baseball is back this evening with the Reds hosting the Pirates. They are kinda like two ships passing in the night, with the Pirates slipping after a decent start and the Reds charging like a pissed off bull after a comatose April. So let’s take a spin around the internet to see what folks are yakkin’ on about.
Central Media has a nice montage of the very best Reds plays of the first half according to StatCast. If you don’t have the two minutes to watch it, it’s mostly about how Billy Hamilton is a force of geological proportions.
As an aside, I for one and eternally grateful that I live in a time and place where StatCast montages exist. Imagine only seeing stuff like this in the daily boxscore. We all have truly come from the dirt.
Nightengale the Younger has a finger on the pulse of the trade deadline. Nothing has really changed in the last few weeks in terms of who might be dealt and the chances thereof, but if yesterday’s Brad Hand-to-the-Indians deal is any accurate indication of the market, I’m confident the Reds are going to hang on to Raisel Iglesias. And Scooter Gennett too, for that matter. It might be prudent to reexamine these issues in December.
Scott Rolen, the namesake of Scott Rolen’s Reds, has signed on to be director of player development at the University of Indiana. As you might expect, I don’t think he has made a public comment on it either way. At least, no public comment with any vowels in it.
This is a wonderful and surprising development to me. Rolen is nearly universally credited with being a powerful and positive force in his few years in Cincinnati (you know he was a Red for just like three-and-a-half years?) and the likes of Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Todd Frazier, and many others claim him as a mentor. But all that said, I didn’t think it was all that likely that he would work in baseball after his playing career. He just seems like the type that would go home to Jasper, Indiana and shoot hoops with his kids and take up combine harvester racing as a hobby. But here he is, taking an important position with the Hoosiers. It makes me happy. Go get ‘em, old man.
FanGraphs has been running down their annual Trade Value Rankings in the come up to the trade deadline and our very own Eugenio Suarez is the highest Red on the list, coming in at #32. Methinks he’ll be a goodly bit higher than that at this time next year. Nick Senzel got an honorable mention.
Another diddle from FanGraphs, this time a look at strength of schedule over the remainder of the season. The Reds will finish the season a bit easier than average, so there’s another point in favor of my completely unreasonable projection from the other day.
Are you a smart nerd math dork? Probably not, or you’d be doing something better than reading this bloghole. But whatever, the Reds are hiring.
Chris Archer seems to be getting impatient with the Rays. Not like he’s being a jerk about it or anything, but he kinda wants to play for a winner and he wants the Rays to get busy getting better. They may not be moving at his speed though, so it seems he’d be amenable to a trade. Like maybe to a team looking to be totally jammin’ awesome next season.
I’ve liked Archer for a long time. He has been really consistent and reliable, averaging 200 innings the last four seasons with a 3.66 ERA. He isn’t a lock-em-down premiere bona fide Clayton Kershaw kinda ace, but he’s only about one step down from that level.
Of course, the asking price would be steep (imagine a package of prospects starting with (Nick Senzel, Hunter Greene, Taylor Trammell, or Jonny India). And though he won’t be 30 years old until late September, he does have a ton of innings on his arm already. Some might say he’s an old 30.
But either way, he is a guy to keep your eye on coming up to the deadline, if not this winter.
Dan Hoard at The Athletic did a Ten Teammates in a Hat with the imitable Dusty Baker. Cy Schourek brought up the idea of bringing him back as manager this winter, which I must say I would not be upset about it. He’s a really cool dude, and this bit about Denny McClain is wonderful:
“Denny McLain didn’t like me too much. He said that I was a smart aleck, cocky rookie. I liked Denny because with the Braves we had all these guys at the end of their careers. Blue Moon Odom, Denny McLain, Jim ‘Jumbo’ Nash – whoever was kind of on the way down. With Denny I remember two things. He opened a nightclub in Atlanta on Ponce de Leon (Avenue). It didn’t last too long. The second thing I remember is that they had this big promotion that he was going to beat the Pittsburgh Pirates. He was going to shut them out on a Sunday afternoon. I guess Willie Stargell put the newspaper clipping up on the board and man they went to work on Denny McLain. I don’t even know if he lasted an inning. It was Stargell and Al Oliver and Gene Clines and Richie Hebner and Big Bob Robertson. I think somebody ran me and Ralph Garr into each other (in the outfield). Man, Denny McLain. I had to pull that name out of the hat.”