29. March 2017 00:11
Timed out again, but only five days until real baseball starts (I don't count Sudnday's games since the Reds should start the season, but no longer get to be first )
21. March 2017 23:49
I watched the first six innings of today's game with the Angels, and from what I see of the final results, I turned it off just in time. Cody Reed looked really, really good in his nearly six innings (got pulled for pitchcount with 2 outs). At that point the Reds were up 1-0. Since they managed to lose 9-1 I don't think I missed much. Surely hope Reed can bring the polish he showed today on a more regular basis this season now that he has a bit more MLB seasoning.
Dawg, when are you heading to Goodyear?
12. March 2017 16:01
Just in time to see how Bronson Arroyo starting a spring training game. Hope he does wel
4. March 2017 17:49
Hope to hear some feedback from Goodyear from Doc and Dawg.
I know it's only spring, but I am feeling optimistic about having a fun season with Joey and his ducklings.
2. April 2016 18:33
A quick summary of Spring Training.
GOOD NEWS: HITTING
The Reds as a team hit .284/.350 for the spring. That's good stuff.
Guys who are heading north who hit at least the team average .284 (in order):
And here's Joey's slashline for the spring: .455/.529/.636/1.556. Holy cow.
BAD NEWS: PITCHING
There is almost nothing good to say about the pitching. Cingrani had a really good spring. Hoover's was decent. That's about it.
Injuries everywhere. Pulling in leftovers off the waiver wire. Ugh.
1. How did Drew Hayes not make the bullpen cut? Don't tell me it's because he's not on the 40-man roster. That's not a valid excuse when the bullpen is this bad. He had a lights-out spring but got sent down before they broke camp. Pitched a scoreless inning today in Indy. No runs, no hits, two strikeouts. What gives?
2. What is Price thinking batting Cozart leadoff? I'm okay with moving BHam down, but do you know that Cozart has a worse lifetime OBP than Billy? And that he had a worse spring than Billy? And that he's 0-7 with five strikeouts since Price moved him to leadoff two games ago? And that he SUCKED at the top of the lineup a couple of years ago under Dusty? And that he's coming off a MAJOR injury? I would bat ANYONE on the team in the leadoff slot ahead of Cozart. How about BP, who did well there last year and had a killer spring?
9. March 2016 18:57
Greetings from Goodyear where it's sunny, 80 degrees, and life is good. Even an 11-5 buttwupping from the Rangers today can't harsh my mellow. Bad baseball is better than no baseball at all.
Random reflections on the day:
--No batting practice on the back fields today because the team returned from Scottsdale after midnight last night. Did get to see pitchers loosening up on the field. Said hello to Jon Lamb and Drew Hayes. Also saw Cozart fielding grounders.
--I know this is a first-world problem, but the cost at the gate for a lawn ticket was $9 instead of the normal $8 because it was purchased the day of the game. Silly surcharge by my way of thinking.
--Small crowd, so I sat where I wanted in the shade behind the plate.
--All the Reds runs came in the 9th inning from the C squad. By that time I was sitting right behind the dugout. Fun to watch the youngsters rally.
--No Reds pitcher looked good today. Mattheus and Cotham in particular got waxed.
--Nice throw from Yorman in right field to get Choo out trying to take third.
--Speaking of Choo, he got warm pre-game greetings from Bruce, Votto, and Price. So did Adrian Beltre (not sure of the connection there) and Drew Stubbs.
--Speaking of Stubbs, he chased and missed two high pitches in a row and then caught up with the third one, launching it for a long home run which landed....(wait for it...) at the base of the light tower. I'm not making this up.
Okay, that's about it for today. I'll keep this thread running while I'm in AZ and will add to it tomorrow after I return from watching the Reds battle the Rockies at Salt River Fields. Looking forward to some good eating in Scottsdale tomorrow, too. (BTW, we went to Raul and Theresa's last night for a great meal--I know Amy and Champ enjoy that place too.)
1. March 2016 07:20
Hooray for March! It sure took its time getting here.
Today is the first game of Spring Training. Cleveland will be the home team in Goodyear this afternoon. First pitch at 3:05 ET.
Today's game, and tomorrow's as well, will be broadcast up here on FSO. I'll miss the first inning but hope to catch most of the rest of the game. I'll probably post a few comments along the way.
Here is the lineup, via Mark Sheldon:
20. February 2016 18:27
We timed out even with only a few messages on the last thread, so here is new one.
I saw a tweet from John Fay that was somewhat encouraging where he said that Devin Mesoraco caught as many sessions as any other catcher. Hope he does not encounter any setbacks.
28. March 2015 10:21
Let me say up front that I offer this post just for friendly discussion. I don't think my recommendations will be followed by the Reds, and I'm guessing many on this board will disagree with me. I'm just tossing it out there to promote some conversation the week before the season starts.
I give you two players:
Player #1: 29 years old
Slashline #1: .271/.331/.479/.810
Slashline #2: .304/.373/.543/.916
Slashline #3: .405/.468/.619/1.087
Player #2: 29 years old
Slashline #1: .221/.268/.300/.568
Slashline #2: .172/.213/.276/.489
Slashline #3: .258/.258/.290/.548
Those of you who know me can probably guess where this is going. Player #1 is Kris Negron; Player #2 is Zack Cozart. The slashlines are from last season, last September, and Spring Training 2015.
Of course the sample sizes of Slashlines #2 and #3 are small, and of course they represent mostly meaningless games. The larger trend I'm trying to note is that Cozart was an early bloomer who is fading, while Negron is a late bloomer who is rising. The two players are about the same age (Negron is actually a few months younger), but they are heading in diametrically different directions.
Cozart's batting stats have gone down each of the last three years--precipitously. Last season was so bad that he had the lowest OPS of ANY REGULAR PLAYER IN THE MAJOR LEAGUES. Look it up. At .568, his OPS was #146 out of 146, nearly 20 points below M. Dominguez of Houston, whoever that is.
So this is the point where everyone yells, "But Cozart's an outstanding fielder who saves us games with his glove." To which I say, "I agree." I love watching Zack Cozart play shortstop. But you know what? I've seen Kris Negron play the infield and he's excellent. Good glove, soft hands, good range, strong arm. Check his minor league stats at SS and you'll see they're almost the equivalent of Cozart's. I'm not saying Negron is Cozart's equal in the field--few in MLB are--but he's not far off.
I'm not stupid--I know full well that Negron's role on this team is supersub off the bench. I get it. I also know that if Cozart went down with an injury this season, it's likely they'd call up Suarez to start in his place. In the Enquirer today, it was noted that Suarez hit only.242/.316 with 4 HR in a brief stint with Detroit last year. That doesn’t sound all that promising--until you realize that Cozart hit .221/.268 with 4 HR last year, in more than twice the ABs.
Many of you will say, "Cozart's the least of our problems. If he bats 8th and fields well, we can play around him." To which I will once again say, "I agree." But noting that he's the least of our problems doesn't mean he's not a problem. It's a problem when a guy's offense diminishes dramatically during three prime years of his career. It's a problem when he has the lowest OPS in the major leagues. And it's a problem when there is a guy on the bench who is blooming while Cozart is fading.
I'm not silly enough to believe that Negron could be anywhere close to an All-Star shortstop. But I honestly believe he could put up numbers equal to or better than Cozart's 2012 or 2013 numbers, with little dropoff in the field. And c'mon, you gotta love Negron's hustle, attitude, and game.
All of this is rather pointless because we saw last year that Cozart has the longest leash of anyone on this team. He stunk on toast at the plate all season and still got 543 PAs. I honestly hope he turns things around this year. I'm not rooting against him; I would be delighted to see him rebound. But if he keeps grounding out to the left side, popping up to right, and/or striking out (his three favorite options), I hope they'll give Negron some of his innings. And if Suarez is lighting it up in Louisville and takes Cozart's place, Zack might be out of a job--because he's nowhere near as valuable on the bench as Kris Negron.