Cincinnati Reds Minor League Talk: Episode 24 Doug Gray February 2, 2018 23 Comments I’m trying my best to stay on a once-a-week schedule with Cincinnati Reds Minor League Talk. This makes it three weeks in a row that I’ve accomplished that goal. Go me! The episode is a lot shorter than last weeks, which ran just over 43 minutes. This week we come in just under 10 minutes. There were a few topics this week that were discussed: The Greeneville Reds are official, and their logo is certainly interesting. The Reds will be moving from two Dominican Summer League teams down to one. Re-signing right hander Domingo Tapia. The Reds signed right hander Luis Heredia. There wasn’t a whole lot going on this past week, but there were a few things worth discussing. Also, a big thanks to everyone who subscribed over on Youtube last week (you can subscribe here if you haven’t, but would like to). We cruised on past 1000 subscribers over there, bypassing step one of what was needed to keep getting a small amount of income coming in from the advertising over there. Step two is getting to 4000 hours watched over the last year. We aren’t there yet, but we are moving in the right direction. 23 Responses Colorado Red February 2, 2018 Listened to you on youtube for this. Let’s go to 4K hours Doug Gray February 2, 2018 Thanks! I’m hoping we can get there. It won’t be a HUGE deal if we don’t, but it certainly would be nice to keep that very small amount of income flowing in. redleggingfordayz February 2, 2018 Doug, We don’t normally disagree on much. And even then I would say our differences are minor. But that logo is pure meme gold. I want to give a Ron Swanson level handshake to the graphic designer that pulled this one together. Long live Mr. Crockett RedLegs. Sincerely, A Fan of Memes Doug Gray February 2, 2018 It’s growing on me, slightly. Bill February 3, 2018 I think the Greeneville Reds logo is outstanding! Perfectly ties the franchise with the local community. CP February 3, 2018 Good stuff Doug. Keep these coming! MK February 3, 2018 Agent say players should boycott Spring Training:https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/mlb/2018/02/02/prominent-baseball-agent-suggests-spring-training-boycott/110043532/ Colorado Red February 3, 2018 To the players, Do not bite the hand that feeds you. This class is solid, but not great. JD 5/125 offer. Hosmer 147 offer, etc. YU is not elite, and blue up the the WS. Hosmer is not Votto, or Goldschmidt, etc. None is HOF worthy at this point. Accept the boat load of money contracts. Alex February 3, 2018 I agree with this so much. Hosmer is a good player but he is a very overrated player. He might think he deserves it but no he doesn’t deserve Joey votto kind of money. Sorry hosmer ! MK February 3, 2018 I don’t know if Todd Frazier has had any offers but he should not be holding out for anything better. As great a guy and super teammate he is he has been about a .220 hitter with some power since he left. That deal has been a good one for the Reds. Bill February 3, 2018 As some have pointed out, the slow market this offseason should provide buying opportunities for teams that are coming out of rebuild mode. Aside from the Lorenzo Cain signing, we haven’t really seen teams go after the bigger free agents. To me, that says there is market consensus that there is no game-changing talent available. I can’t remember an offseason where that has been the case, but nearly every big name on the market comes with a caveat that would cause any reasonable buyer to set a ceiling on how much they are willing to offer. Likewise, it becomes hard to differentiate between these players, so why not wait the market out? Free agent contracts have always benefited the elite players over the more fungible ones. Although they haven’t taken to the media like some of the players and agents have, it’s quite possible the owners are equally frustrated that the solid players with solid offers won’t sign. There are always at least two perspectives in a stalemate. In my opinion, the MLBPA made a pretty big mistake when they agreed to what is essentially a soft cap while not requiring a spending floor for teams. The lack of a floor further incentivizes “tanking” for teams that don’t see themselves as competitive. It can’t be good for the overall health of the game to have teams go for multiple consecutive years without making a legitimate effort to field a competitive team. But as long as revenues have continued to poor in, there has been little incentive to holistically address competitive balance. Andy February 3, 2018 https://www.si.com/mlb/2018/02/02/brodie-van-wagenen-agent-free-agency-market I’m pretty interested in this. I don’t think the Reds should go after any middling starters yet, they are not close enough to competitive. As for the MLBPA mistakes, they need to fix the pay gap between rookies and free agents, because MLB teams that are not “going for it” are not paying huge contracts to average players. Try something to even the pay scale… for a team to choose $15M guy over $500K guy, there better be BIG difference in terms of wins, ticket sales, and merchandise. MikeD February 3, 2018 Anyone, John Fay mentioned that Larkin through Reds management under the bus. Anyone know what that was about? Bill February 3, 2018 Check out the article Zach Buchanan wrote about Larkin’s “academy” in Orlando. He criticized the Reds for not having him work with the Reds shortstops nor using Eric Davis with their center fielders, specifically Hamilton, at the big league level. Hal February 4, 2018 Because Davis would have made Billy into a good defensive center fielder?!? Or perhaps he would have turned him into a 30 HR guy. Sounds very self serving B Lark. Norwood Nate February 4, 2018 This stagnant winter seems to be the most about teams assessing value similarly, and about teams not willing to spend to be mediocre. There will always be a chance to add payroll if/when you’re ready to compete. Whether that is through FA or taking on salary in a trade you can alway add to your team through money when you need to. There just isn’t any motivation to do so when you’re not planning on competing for a division. There is much more incentive to evaluate the cost-controlled guys you have coming up in your system, or to try catching lightning in a bottle through a cheap waiver claim or minor league deal than there is to sign a veteran to much more money and become locked into years. Those players are typically older and by virtue of being older more likely to sustain injury or performance decline. Teams have seen the fool’s gold of free agency for what it is, and have been incentivized to get under the luxury tax line and/or tank for a better draft pick, which is a tried and true way to improve the farm system. The Reds best three prospects have come directly from having high draft picks (and the bonus pool attached) in the past two drafts. To start the offseason, I identified two players I would have wanted the Reds to kick the tires on, Tyler Chatwood and Lorenzo Cain. I thought both could be had on contracts that would provide value to a team. Lo and behold both those guys are off the market while 110 other FA sit and wait (and for some, complain). Teams aren’t afraid of spending money to add value, they’re afraid of repeating past blunders where they are getting burned on the back end of these massive FA contracts. No one wants a Choo, Pujols, Fielder, Ellsbury, Kemp contract on their books as a black hole. For the Reds, this is neither here nor there. They were never going to be in on the top of the FA class. I don’t think any of those guys are that special anyway, not for the money they’d cost. They picked through the relievers available and signed a couple for low cost, and ultimately low risks. The only thing they need to focus on is trying to move an OF’er not named Winker so that they can Price-proof the roster. That’s where their offseason business lies. The other stuff is just amusing to watch for us fans. Cguy February 4, 2018 “Price-proof the roster”? Surely you jest. Bryan’s line-up card is edited by Williams. Probably Castellini even has active oversight of who plays & who sits. As for who’s on the roster, I doubt that Price makes any of those decisions & has less input than many other managers at the ML level. Colorado Red February 4, 2018 Doubt it. Williams is heavy in analytics. Price, not so much. Doug Gray February 4, 2018 Williams has been saying for at least a year that he prefers a high OBP guy at the top of the lineup, all the while, Billy Hamilton has hit leadoff when he’s been healthy and in the lineup. Williams isn’t making the lineup. Greenfield Red February 4, 2018 I would like to see them take on the Kemp contract along with Verdugo, Alvarez, K Ruiz and Dustin May for Iglasias. The Dodgers have to know they are the favorite in the NL, and they have to know there is a good chance the Yankees with their right handed power will be waiting for them. This would help the Dodgers in the next couple of years and help the Reds big time down the line. Colorado Red February 4, 2018 Except, The Dodgers have a closer from last year. He is young, and did very well. Not sure they would take that deal. Of course, another shut down closer never hurts. Greenfield Red February 4, 2018 Yes, the Dodgers have a closer. However, I think they really want to get rid of Kemp, and if both are healthy, there is nothing wrong with having two big time arms at the end of your bullpen. They could make it a 7 inning game. Cguy February 4, 2018 Gee, evidently Jerry Crasnick had it wrong on Jan. 5th when he reiterated that Castellini wanted Hamilton to remain a Red forever (& hadn’t altered his view on his position in the last year). It’s difficult for me to believe that you feel Price manages this club with autonomy.