I would like to wish everyone a very safe Merry Christmas. Santa has already brought me lots of gifts this Christmas (Albert Pujols to the Angels, 2r2d posted on MLBlogs.com main page, Mat Latos, Sean Marshall and another gift I will not mention until I get it.) But there was another gift I wanted (yes, I know I am greedy) before the 25th and that is Prince Fielder signing with a team out of the National League Central Division. I hope that this will happen before the New Year.
Here is a list of moves so far this offseason that have helped the Cincinnati Reds for the 2012 season. Some of the moves were not even done by the Reds.
- The Reds re-sign catcher Corky Miller.
I think Corky Miller will be a big help in 2012 and see him playing in quite a few games. The Reds were very lucky last season with healthy catchers. I am not sure if that will be the case in 2012. Sure, he is not a great hitter in the big leagues right now but he can call a great game and is a veteran player that can really help out the club when needed. I still see him as being a coach / manager for the Reds one day. I hope to see him and Sam LeCure in Reds jerseys for many more years.
- Albert Pujols signs with Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim leaving the National League Central.
This is a huge move that will help the Reds out big time in 2012. Although the St. Louis Cardinals are still a top team in the National League, they just are not as dangerous to face anymore. They just recently signed Carlos Beltran but I am afraid he might still be very injury prone along with the fact that they have a new manager who might have a tough time keeping the team motivated all season long.
- Ryan Braun tested positive for PEDs.
This suspension will be a big turning point in Milwaukee Brewers season. Along with losing Prince Fielder and the team going back to signing good fielding shortstops instead of good hitting ones this should help the Reds keep ahead of them in the standings all season long.
- Mat Latos traded to the Reds.
There are still a lot of people out there that think the Reds overpaid for this great young starter but only time will tell when it comes to prospects. I think having Mat Latos in the starting rotation will really help the team out in 2012.
- Sean Marshall traded to the Reds from Chicago Cubs.
This trade is still on the table and no one really knows who the two minor league players are. Once the smoke clears though, I see this as being a huge trade for the Reds. Not only did they get a tough relief pitcher away from a division rival but they added an inning eating left-handed setup man, something they were missing last season. The Cubs have been reported to be in a total clean up situation this offseason and might even move more players. Then again, there are also some rumors that they are trying to sign Prince Fielder but I really don’t see this as being a big problem for the Reds. Prince Fielder is a deadly hitter but not as deadly when he doesn’t have Ryan Braun and the rest of the Brewers with him. I am still hoping Prince signs with a team out of the Central but if the Cubs do get him I am not going to lose much sleep over it.
St. Louis Cardinals signed Carlos Beltran today and I still don’t think that is enough to help them win another World Series. Sure, a two-year deal for Beltran instead of a ten-year deal with Albert Pujols might be smart to some fans but they are really going to miss The Machine when the 2012 season starts. If this is their solution for when Pujols signed with Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim the Reds really don’t have a lot to worry about. Don’t get me wrong, they are still a tough team but without Pujols and Tony LaRussa they are not as scary as they once were.
Beltran vs. the Cincinnati Reds is actually a joke compared to Albert Pujols vs. the Reds.
Carlos Beltran career vs. Cincinnati Reds
Split G AB R H HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS Cincinnati Reds 47 180 32 48 10 44 27 32 .267 .360 .533 .894
Albert Pujols vs. the Reds.
Split G AB R H HR RBI BB SO BA OBP SLG OPS Cincinnati Reds 172 652 146 228 46 143 92 52 .350 .430 .641 1.072
The Cincinnati Reds are currently sitting with an overall record of 9994 wins with 9702 losses. (1882 – 2011) 8975 of those wins are as the Cincinnati Reds. As Cincinnati Red Stockings (1882 – 1889) they had 549 wins. 470 of the wins are when they were Cincinnati Redlegs. (1954 – 1959)
So 2012 will witness the team with such a rich history go on to win 10,000 wins. Or if you want to get technical 9000 as the Cincinnati Reds. No matter how you look at it, this season will be a record-breaking season. I expect the Reds to bounce back and make the playoffs again this season. Of course I am biased but from what I have seen in the offseason with teams in the Central Division there is only one other team that is really making anything happen and that is Pittsburgh Pirates. The moves the Cardinals and Brewers have made (or have not made) are not scaring me one bit. And the Cubs and Astros don’t really look to promising either.
What a better way to take 10,000 wins than to win the division and go on to the World Series against Los Angeles Angels. Ok, I will wake up now and try to be a little more realistic. The Reds waiting game is paying off so far in my mind but they still need to make some moves in order to even come in 3rd in 2012. I do see Pittsburgh doing better this season though and I really am not sure if the Brewers will be very competitive in 2012 with everything going on with them. (Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder) Cardinals still have a great team but it will be very interesting to see how well they play without Albert Pujols and Tony LaRussa.
The moves the Cincinnati Reds make this offseason will either make them or break them. Trading too much away to get a top of the rotation starter that finishes with a 15 – 13 record and killing their future or not trading enough and getting a player that does not give them a big enough push to win their division are the two main things that scare me right now. I think this is why the front office has not made a move yet. They are really looking at all the options and with everything that is going on with the Brewers and Cardinals right now their waiting game is paying off nicely.
In all seriousness I really don’t see an easy solution to their need for a top of the rotation starter. Who could they really bring in for three or four of their top prospects that will walk out with 20+ wins in 2012 with most of those games being in Great American Ball Park? And in my mind trading away three or more top prospects for a 15 to 17 win pitcher is not really going to help in the long run. If the Reds can get their hitters to hit the ball instead of striking out so much the pitchers they have right now are all capable of winning 17 games so why would they want to trade away their future for a pitcher that really might not do very well in Great American Ball Park? And let’s be real honest here, we don’t see many top pitchers knocking on the Reds front door begging to come play in Great American Ball Park for a few seasons. The only way the Reds will get the big starter they really want is by trading for him and they are going to have to trade a lot away in order to get him. I might be the only fan out there that really does not want to see that happen.
I am not going to write too much about this because to tell you the honest truth I am still shocked and confused. Ryan Braun, the National League MVP tested positive for PEDs and is now trying to fight it. With this news, as a Reds fan it makes me wonder how well they will do in 2012. Now that Prince Fielder will not be on that team and Ryan Braun will be facing a 50 game suspension along with Albert Pujols being traded away from St. Louis Cardinals and Tony LaRussa retiring. Do people actually believe the Breweres and Cardinals will do well without the people who really helped them a lot in 2011? The Reds will not have Francisco Cordero or Ramon Hernandez but even with not making any moves at all this offseason they are still sitting in better shape. I predict the Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates to do well in the Central now.
Year Age G AB R H HR RBI SB BA OBP SLG OPS 2007 23 113 451 91 146 34 97 15 .324 .370 .634 1.004 2008 24 151 611 92 174 37 106 14 .285 .335 .553 .888 2009 25 158 635 113 203 32 114 20 .320 .386 .551 .937 2010 26 157 619 101 188 25 103 14 .304 .365 .501 .866 2011 27 150 563 109 187 33 111 33 .332 .397 .597 .994 5 Seasons 729 2879 506 898 161 531 96 .312 .371 .563 .933 162 Game Avg. 162 640 112 200 36 118 21 .312 .371 .563 .933
I have been reading a lot of blogs lately and one theme I am seeing a lot with Reds fans is that people are not happy with the lack of movement this offseason. Walt Jocketty once again is saying he is trying but nothing is happening. It does not surprise me that nothing has been done yet and to tell you the truth I am happy that nothing has been done. It means Walt is not going to give up our prospects for players he feels don’t deserve it. Many of us can point fingers freely and say it is all Walt’s fault or it is all Dusty’s fault but we do not realize that the other teams might be trying to get way too much for a player that really does not deserve it. I would not want to see the Reds trade away Yonder Alonso and one of their catching prospects for someone like Huston Street. I would probably crawl into a snow bank and not come out until it melted.
How about four of the Reds top prospects for Jair Jurrjens? Are you off your meds? I am glad none of these rumors came true, it shows that the front office will not trade away the future for someone who might not even help us for one season. If they want to win this year they will have to make a move but we really need to determine as fans what we want. Do we want them to win one Championship or many of them? I for one would love to see them in the playoffs for many seasons so keeping our young prospects is a very good idea. I don’t think trading three or four of them away in one trade is really a smart move right now. I don’t care if Greg Maddux and Pedro Martinez type pitchers are up for trades, I would rather keep our prospects. What if Yonder Alonso does awesome in left field in 2012 and becomes rookie of the year? What if one of the Reds young pitchers goes on to become one of the best closers in baseball because the Reds took a chance and let him play that role? And what if Yasmani Grandal goes on to become another Johnny Bench for the Reds? Do you really want to trade these guys away for one player who will get killed in Great American Ball Park? Don’t get me wrong, if Walt can get one of those types of pitchers for one prospect and other players to be named later than I say go for it, but I really don’t think they could ever get a top of the rotation Ace without giving up most of the farm system.
Being an armchair GM for many years now I must say I am very pleased with how Walt Jocketty is handling this team. I get frustrated sometimes and wish he would make a move but I do understand that holding our players at a certain value and not just sending them away for a player to be named later is not an easy task. Many factors come into play that a lot of us might not understand. We also have to remember that the Reds are not to big into the whole Money Ball idea right now as far as I have read and Walt is going off of what his scouts and staff say. And I really am getting used to not seeing the Reds do much during the offseason. Another great thing about this offseason is that teams in the National League Central are losing their top players while the Reds just sit and watch. They might also be waiting to see where Prince Fielder goes before making any moves at all especially now that the Machine Albert Pujols is gone to the Angels.
If the team finishes below .500 again in 2012 I don’t think fans will have to wait much longer for something to happen. I think Walt and Dusty will be on the ropes and as fans begin to find other things to spend their money on the owners will step in and tell Walt and Dusty to move on. The Reds would then have to hire a whole new front office and that might have Reds fans wishing Walt and Dusty were back.
Los Angeles Angels made one of my Christmas gifts come early this year when they signed Albert Pujols and got him out of the National League Central Division to help out my favorite baseball team the Cincinnati Reds. Now I am glad to announce that another early gift has fallen into my lap this year. My Cincinnati Reds themed fan blog 2r2d is being featured on MLBlogs. That alone is a great gift, but when I checked it out, I saw that I was right beside Tommy Lasorda’s World. I was giddy like a little school kid for over an hour when I first saw that. I am very honored to be featured on there and happy that people are liking 2r2d. Tommy Lasorda might not ever know who I am but I will never forget him and this great honor will forever be remembered. Thank you MLBlogs.
I have been a Reds fan for many years now and even though I might not ever be able to see a game live because I live in a small town in Saskatchewan, Canada, it has never stopped me from cheering just as loud as the hometown fans. I see a lot of promise in the Reds this year and for many to come and I am very proud to be a fan of baseball in general. It is the greatest sport out there and I enjoy watching it (not only Reds games but any game) any chance I can get.
And just for those keeping track, I still have one Christmas gift wish waiting to come true, Prince Fielder out of the Central Division with a big Red bow! If that comes true, this will go down as the best Christmas this Reds fan has ever had.