Wednesday news and notes Doug Gray March 27, 2013 24 Comments The Reds offered Miguel Olivo $100,000 to report to Louisville as part of the new CBA for players with his experience level coming off of a MLB deal the year before. He has not yet decided whether he will accept it, but given that he is hitting .167 this spring, I doubt there is an offer out there for a big league deal. With that said, he may see that the Reds have two pretty good catchers in Cincinnati and another AAA offer could be out there with a better situation for him. If he does head to another team, it could leave the Reds scrambling to find a catcher for AA/AAA given the current depth and need for four guys between the two levels. Mark Sheldon has a short piece up on JJ Hoover’s spring and his chances to make the team. Hoover had this to say: “I’ve done everything I can performance-wise up to this point,” Hoover said. “I feel confident with what I’ve done. I understand the business side of things. I’ll take the chips where they fall.” How the Reds handle the situation with Hoover could ripple through the minor leagues as it would either create an extra spot at each level or take away a spot at each level. Hoover being in the big leagues in favor of Ondrusek/Arredondo/Simon could leave one of the last two lost to waivers or Ondrusek optioned to Louisville (Fay says Ondrusek has options, Sheldon says he doesn’t). It will also lead to the Reds receiving some sort of return for the player picked up, which may take a spot elsewhere in the minor leagues. Chadwick Fisher has up a nice season preview on the Louisville Bats at their official website. Here is what Fisher has as their projected starting lineup: C – Corky Miller, 1B – Neftali Soto, 2B – Henry Rodriguez, SS – Kristopher Negron, 3B – Mike Hessman, LF – Ryan LaMarre, CF – Billy Hamilton, RF – Denis Phipps. Go check out the entire article though, there is some good stuff in there. Tom Nichols finished up his position previews at DaytonDragons.com last week, but I never got around to linking them with other things going on. Here he looks at the starting rotation, where he projects Robert Stpephenson, Ismael Guillon, Dan Langfield, Drew Cisco and Sal Romano to round out the starters. He also notes that Wes Mugarian and Nick Travieso could find themselves in the rotation at some point as well. Here he takes a look at the relievers, where he profiles Mo Wiley, David Chacin (who was previously going by his first name Alejandro), Jose Amezcua, Jesus Adames, Stephen Hunt (former position player), Joel Bender, Michael Salter, Michael Saunders and Carlos Ramos. 24 Responses The Duke March 27, 2013 That AAA outfield defense will be tremendous. The infield……………..not so much. Trading away one of Ondrusek or Arredondo wouod be ideal, but i’m not sure how much they would return. Probably a pipe dream that they would bring back one of the new competitive balance picks in a trade. Hoover would make the Reds better though. I think Romano heads to EST and then Billings. He is just 19, and still pretty raw. foxbud March 27, 2013 I would not trade Arredondo as he is the equivalent of another lefty out of the pen. My preference would be to trade Ondrusek with Simon a ideal possibility. Philly at one time had interest in Ondrusek so I would start there. Doug Gray March 27, 2013 Romano held his own in Billings at age 18. The Reds certainly saw something they liked in him to think he could handle that jump at 18, I don’t see why they wouldn’t be comfortable with him in Dayton to start the year. sultan of swaff March 27, 2013 Boy, you gotta question whether Corky is up for catching that much at his age. Rather than sign some retread like Olivo, I’d opt for Barnhart. Yeah, he probably isn’t quite ready for that level, but he’ll never be a hit-first catcher anyway. The value of working with Corky would offset that IMO. MK March 27, 2013 They still have Nevin Ashley who has quite a bit of AAA and some MLB experience, They need to let Barnhart learn to hit. MK March 27, 2013 I have been surprised the last ten days that it seems Donald Lutz has been getting MLB innings over Neftali Soto when Votto is out or comes out of the line-up. Even more than Hanrahan. Two things. Isn’t Donald supposed to be learning to play leftfield and isn’t Neftali higher on the depth chart at firstbase? Is this kind of a lack of respect for Soto or has Lutz passed him by. In addition to the experience there are dollars involved here too. When these optioned or minor league guys play in the big league game the get big league per diem for that day rather than minor league per diem. It amounts to 3 or 4 times difference, good money for the minorleaguers. jim t March 27, 2013 MK i think Soto is injured. Doug Gray March 27, 2013 This is correct. Soto tweaked a hammy, which has led to Lutz getting time backing up Votto for the big league squad. wanderinredsfan March 27, 2013 Donald has been dealing with a minor injury also. Supposedly, he’s feeling a lot better and ready to go full-throttle. WallyP March 27, 2013 Doug if you look at the guys in camp especially AAA and AA . You have to believe that the reds will be releasing a good amount of players. Some of these guys deserve to play at that level but we seem to overlap a great deal at several position. It will also give these guys a chance to land with another team. Doug Gray March 27, 2013 Yeah, I think we will see a lot of guys cut from minor league camp. There simply aren’t enough jobs for the amount of guys they have. What will be interesting is to see which guys get cut. George March 27, 2013 It’s my understanding that Ondrusek has one option year remaining. His contract was purchased after the 2009 season. He was optioned to Louisville briefly in 2010, and again in 2012. Then there is this: http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2013/02/out-of-options-2013.html For me, Hoover *should* make the team. In my mind, Hoover, Chapman, Broxton, Marshall, and Lecure are locks. That leaves two spots to be filled by a combination of Parra, Simon, Arredondo, Ondrusek, and Hensley. I think that the Reds want Parra as another left-hander. Hensley is on a minor league contract, with an invite to spring training, and I don’t see him making the 25-man roster. Ondrusek has an option year left. I see it as a two-man race between Arredondo and Simon, but Simon is a little behind because of his time sitting in the bullpen for the DR in the WBC. I see Arredondo as the favorite. Doug, do you see it the same way? Doug Gray March 27, 2013 I don’t think the Reds will feel the need for a third lefty in the bullpen, especially since Arredondo owns lefties. Hoover should absolutely make this team though. Jimmer March 27, 2013 It would be an crime if Hoover gets sent to AAA. Ryan the Red March 27, 2013 More like business. Stock March 27, 2013 Chapman, Marshall, Broxton, LeCure and Arrendondo are locks in my opinion. Hoover is in but because he has options is far from a lock. The final spot is between Simon, Ondrusek and Parra. Simon either gets traded, released or accepts assignment to Louisville. Ondrusek gets sent to Louisville. Parra makes club. Hensley and Prior go to Louisville. I am hopeful Prior regains his control and gets the call should the need arise. Stock March 27, 2013 A comparison of two pitchers who pitched in the Southern League last summer: Brandon Maurer: 137.2 IP 3.20 ERA 1.315 WHIP 133 Hits 48 BB 117 K Daniel Corcino 143.1 IP 3.01 ERA 1.228 WHIP 111 Hits 65 BB 126 K With the exception of BB Corcino outpitched Maurer last summer. Maurer locked up the 5th starter job with a great spring. Encouraging sign that Corcino can make it to the show as a SP. If he can get his BB rate back to the level it was in 2011 I would imagine it will be difficult to keep him out of the 2014 rotation. Of course Tony Cingrani may have something to say about that. wanderinredsfan March 27, 2013 Yeah, but Maurer has better stuff and control. He has just dealt with a lot of injuries in his past that linger. He seems like he is the healthiest he has ever been, and he has dominated major league hitters this spring. The Duke March 27, 2013 I think Carlos Contreras might be starting games in Bakersfield this year. Doug Gray March 27, 2013 That wouldn’t shock me. He has three pitches, and two of them are pretty good. I guess the only thing that makes me wonder a little bit about it is that he is already on the 40-man, so they may need to push him a little faster. At the same time, if the plan is to have him as a reliever in the long run, spending this year starting will give him more preparation of all of his pitches and then you can move him back to the bullpen next year, or if he does something unexpected, perhaps you have something on your hands. Ryan the Red March 27, 2013 Who would you take today, Lotzkar or Contreras? Not too familiar with Contreras, seems like he came out of nowhere to end up on the 40 man. Doug Gray March 27, 2013 I don’t know at this point because I haven’t seen Lotzkar out of the bullpen. Stuff wise, they are probably close enough. Lotzkar has shown that he can do very well at A+ and at times hold his own in AA and has AA swing and miss stuff, but needs to hone in the control for sure. You don’t know exactly how Contreras will translate to A+ or AA. We think we know based on his past, but you never really know until you know. RobL March 27, 2013 Good interview on fangraphs with Arroyo. The most interesting nugget is that Hanigan only gives him a one or a two for signs. He can catch all of Arroyo’s variations without knowing what’s coming. Probably a big reason why Hanigan has been his personal catcher. Doug Gray March 28, 2013 Arroyo notes that most of his catchers do that.