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.
Lately I have been reading a lot of trade rumors involving the Cincinnati Reds. First one out was Andrew Bailey from Oakland Athletics. Now there is one for Huston Street of Colorado Rockies. I know that Francisco Cordero might not return but why would the Reds trade their top prospects for a relief pitcher? It really makes no sense at all to trade away Yonder Alonso, plus one or two more top prospects for a relief pitcher. In my mind they need an experienced starting pitcher who can get the job done and teach the younger pitchers how to handle their job better. An older pitcher who has been in Major League Baseball for 10+ years. Someone like Scott Rolen (for the young position players) who has been around and knows the business. And to be honest this pitcher should not be that expensive of an acquisition which will help the front office afford more offense and maybe a younger closer later on in the offseason.
I feel that if Walt Jocketty can bring in a starter of this caliber it will really help with getting the younger starters focused and maybe teach them a little more about the game. Of course the Reds will need someone to fill Cordero’s shoes but lets not focus too much on that until we find that starter and know for sure that Cordero is not returning. I would rather see them give the job to Bill Bray or another person already on the team then try another season without an experienced starter to help Bronson Arroyo. If the Reds are going to have their young catchers playing more this season they will need that veteran starter more than anything. And in my mind a closer should not even be on the radar right now. You have to get a win in order to get the save guys and as 2011 showed us, they are having a hard time doing that.
Adding a veteran starting pitcher to help mold the youngsters is a good way to help the Reds in the near future. They might not see the advantage of it in 2012 but it will help for 2013 and longer, which is a lot better than having a closer who cost them all of their future stars.
I know that I am just an armchair GM but this makes a lot more sense then what other people are suggesting in comments I have read. Trading away the team’s top prospects for a young starter is not going to help the team in the long run. Sure it would be nice to get that stud starter who gets 25 wins in 35 starts but at what cost? Is it really worth trading away the whole farm system to get him? And will this guy still be with the Reds in two to three years? I highly doubt it. And another thing that many people are not thinking about is, Great American Ballpark will eat that young stud pitcher up and spit him out over and over again, which will send him packing a lot quicker than expected.