I know I am really stretching my hopes on this one but I thought I would add what I expect the Reds to do this MLB Winter Meetings. Three items, three simple items and I am not even going to dream on these.
1. A cheap / contract controlled outfield bat. Which will cost the most for the Reds, especially if they have to trade RHP Mike Leake. (Yes, I like Leake for the future of the Reds more than Cueto and Latos due to the fact that he can stay off the DL)
2. Cheap / contract controlled bullpen arms. This might be done with the Leake / outfield bat trade.
3. Cheap / contract controlled starting pitchers that will help next season. Let’s face it, Johnny Cueto and Mat Latos will not be with the Reds next season and if they have to trade Mike Leake to get a LF bat, they could really be in trouble next season. Another thing to think about is, there is no way Jocketty and the Reds will sign a big pitcher in next off-season to play in Great American Ball Park, so once again he will have to trade to get them. There are some very nice young pitchers on the Reds farm system right now that should be ready soon so that helps a lot, unless they have to trade them with Leake to get the LF bat.
All of these things should already be at the top of the list for Reds Front Office when they head into the Winter Meetings. I have seen a lot of fans saying they need a SS but in my mind let’s just deal with the real bad issues first. LF bat / bullpen arms / and starting pitchers for the next season.
Now let’s look at what really will happen for the Reds this Winter Meetings! Nothing, nothing at all. Walt and his team will come home empty handed and nothing will be done. Because as we all know, Walt does not make deals under pressure, “I won’t make a deal just to make a deal” And good old Walt does not like to be rushed. So Walt, take your time. There is no rush at all, the Reds will just be hosting the All-Star game this season. Take your time.
Lately there have been a lot of trade rumors, which of course do not relate to the Cincinnati Reds. Ok, there is one. Boston Red Sox could trade LF Yoenis Cespedes to the Reds for one of their starting pitchers, Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos and/or Mike Leake. Personally I don’t really think Cespedes is the guy the Reds need if an OBP guy is what they are looking for. But he is an upgrade from what they had or would have if they went in house for an option. He would be a one year rental and maybe a flash in the pan like Shin-Soo Choo as he gets ready to be a Free Agent.
As a fan, you usually want the team to get better every season and this move would make the team better but if I was Walt Jocketty, I would not pull the trigger if the Red Sox are looking for Cueto and Latos and only want to give up Cespedes. And to tell you the honest truth, out of those three pitchers, I would be looking to re-sign Mike Leake the most, due to him looking like a Bronson Arroyo type pitcher who will pitch many seasons and innings very healthy, which could be very beneficial to the Reds right now.
If the Reds could get two or three other contract controlled players along with Cespedes then I can’t see how the Reds front office can say no, but I don’t think that is the case and I personally don’t like the idea of trading a one year pitcher like Cueto / Latos for one year of Cespedes. Keep the pitching and wait until the trade deadline where you will be able to get a lot more if you are not making the playoffs.
There are a lot of Reds fans already wanting to buy a Cespedes uniform and other merchandise and I don’t blame them. It would be nice to see what the kid can do in Great American Ball Park but if it was up to me, I would rather sign Nori Aoki and keep the three pitchers until the trade deadline.
Intriguing matchup finds Josh Beckett dueling Mike Leake. The Dodgers and Reds have played one-run contests in six of their last eight meetings, with each team taking four games. There is no reason to think that trend might change when the teams play the second of a four-game series on Tuesday night in Cincinnati as the Dodgers send Josh Beckett (2.57 ERA) to the mound opposed by Mike Leake (3.29 ERA).
Dodgers vs Reds
Mike Leake 44 | P
3 – 5 ERA 3.29
Leake had his worst outing of the season in a loss to the Giants on Thursday, giving up five runs on eight hits in five innings. In five career appearances (four starts) against the Dodgers, he is 2-2 with a 4.80 ERA.
Josh Beckett 61 | P
3 – 3 ERA 2.57
Beckett pitches with an extra day of rest, which should be welcome in his third outing since the 128-pitch no-hitter. A 2.56 ERA underscores a comeback-of-the-year season.
There are many things I learned while watching Cincinnati Reds last game against San Diego Padres. (2-1 loss) Mike Leake is a stud number 4/5 guy in the rotation for the Reds. If the Reds were looking for a Bronson Arroyo replacement, they found him. Leake is going to be a solid 200+ inning pitcher every season no matter where you put him in the rotation. If the Reds don’t re-sign Bronson
Arroyo they will have Mike Leake who will become their Mr. Dependable no problem. Every time it is his turn in the rotation he will be there, good or bad, he will be there. Last night he went 7 scoreless innings allowing 4 hits and 2 walks while striking out 5. Can’t get any better than that from your number 4/5 guy in the rotation. I still like Bronson Arroyo, and I hope they do re-sign him but the money he is asking for might be too much for the Reds to handle, at least we know we have another solid inning eater just in case.
The second thing I saw out of last nights game was Derrick Robinson will be a solid top of the batting order guy if the Reds don’t re-sign Shin-Soo Choo which will give the Reds options on if they want to rush Billy Hamilton. Robinson went 2 for 5 with a triple and a run. Robinson has great speed and would be a bonus for any club, especially if he is coming off the bench like his is for the Reds, but what I saw yesterday is, he can be a pretty solid lead off guy if they really need it. Xavier Paul and Derrick Robinson have really impressed me and should have jobs on this club for a very long time if they keep it up.
With all of this, it is good to have a back up plan and from what I have seen, the Reds have two. Mike Leake can be the teams next generations Bronson Arroyo and Derrick Robinson can be the teams lead off hitter next season if Billy Hamilton needs another year to grow. Options are always good to have when it comes to a MLB team with a tight budget.
Cincinnati Reds right-handed starter Mike Leake has never pitched at Petco Park. He has only pitched one game against San Diego Padres and that was a 1.2 inning start where he gave up 5 earned runs with 3 walks and 1 strike out. Which was against former Reds pitcher Edinson Volquez.
San Diego Padres right-handed starter Sean O’Sullivan has only faced three Reds’ hitters in his career (2009 to 2013) Shin-Soo Choo, Jack Hannahan and Cesar Izturis. Choo has 10 at bats vs. O’Sullivan with 2 hits, 2 RBI and 4 SO. Hannahan has 2 hits, 1 BB and 1 SO in 4 AB. Izturis only faced him 2 times and did not record anything in those 2 AB.
This is a very interesting combo to say the least and I am hoping the Reds can bring some much needed offense to help Leake out. I am also hoping Mike Leake can last longer then 1 inning. An 8 inning game from him would really help the Reds bullpen out but at this point I would settle for 6 quality innings of 0 to 1 run baseball.
Reds need to bounce back after yesterday’s loss against Los Angeles Dodgers and I think they need to do it with a bang! Hit O’Sullivan early and get the Padres on their heals right out of the gate. A 5 run 1st inning sure would put a smile on my face.
Padres 11 at Reds 5 (July 30, 2012 / Great American Ball Park)
Cincinnati Reds scored early in this game and I have to say it was the best first inning of play I have seen the Reds play in a very long time. Great patience at the plate by some guys that usually go up to bat swinging. Great game to watch and I really enjoyed watching Mike Leake pitch today, he was locating his pitches very nice and that low strike was really working well for him.
Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips extended their hitting streaks and Todd Frazier went 2 for 4 while Devin Mesoraco got a nice home run in the 9th inning.
Last year on May 21 Mike Leake won against Atlanta Braves in Great American Ball Park 4-1.
May 21, 2012 [Braves 1 vs. Reds 4]
Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR Mike Leake W (1-5) 8 3 1 1 1 6 1
May 21, 2013 [Reds 4 vs. Mets 0]
Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR Mike Leake W (4-2) 7 3 0 0 2 4 0
Provided by MLB.com
May 21, 2012 (Braves 1 at Reds 4)
Mike Leake, Zack Cozart and Drew Stubbs hit back to back to back home runs against the Braves to win 4 to 1. I remember watching this game and feeling that this season was going to be something special.
Leake’s first career homer
Cozart’s back-to-back jack
Stubbs goes back-to-back-to-back