Sebastian Elizalde has gotten out to one heck of a start in the Mexican Winter League. The Cincinnati Reds first base/outfield prospect has played in seven games (the seventh is actually happening as I type this). He’s racked up at least one hit in each game. On Tuesday night, in a game that didn’t start until 11:45pm on the east coast, and lasted 4 hours and 22 minutes after that, Elizalde went 2-4 with two walks, two doubles, an RBI and two runs scored. He continued that last night by homering in his first at-bat of the game. It was his second of the season. It’s 11:30 and the game is still in the 3rd inning, so at the time I type this he’s hitting .458/.551/.875 with five walks, four doubles, two home runs and three strikeouts.

Here’s video of the home run, courtesy of the official Culiacan twitter account

On the same note, it started out as a good evening for Blake Trahan. Getting the start at shortstop for Scottsdale he’s 2-3 with two steals and a run scored as the game enters the bottom of the 5th. He’s hitting .333 in the early parts of the Arizona Fall League.

Jose Peraza made his Venezuelan Winter League debut on Tuesday night. He went 2-4 with a triple, steal, run scored and an RBI. Mark Sheldon of had an article up talking about the debut and had some quotes from the end of the regular season from Peraza about his plans for the winter. This quote is what stuck out for me from the article, though:

I’m preparing myself. I’m going to play shortstop there because I want to be ready for next year,” Peraza said. “I don’t think it’s one thing I have to work on. But playing down there and playing shortstop every day will give me a better idea of how to play here in the big leagues for next year.

With Zack Cozart’s impending free agency, Jose Peraza is the most likely option to fill the shortstop role for the Reds. In 2017 he split time between second and short, with 55 games coming at shortstop. Through two games in Venezuela, though, Jose Peraza hasn’t played shortstop. He has started both games at second. Instead, Humberto Arteaga has started at shortstop for Magallanes. He’s a 23-year-old prospect in the Royals system with a career minor league OPS of .588. Of course, he’s not playing shortstop because of his bat. In 2010-2012 he was named as the best defensive infielder in the Kansas City organization. It’s weird that as soon as he stopped hitting he stopped being rated so highly defensively.

Perhaps it’s just a short term thing, but it would be good for the Reds, and for Jose Peraza, if he could get some action at shortstop this winter. Thus far, it hasn’t happened, but the season is only a week old. On Wednesday night he did find success at the plate, going  2-4 with a walk, RBI and two runs scored.

Who hates the Reds?

In a “That’s really weird” scenario, apparently the Cincinnati Reds are the most hated team in the states of Montana, Missouri, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. At least according to this tweet, with this image:

There was no link to where the information came from, but I was able to eventually find out. The data is based on a reddit user poll. That’s not exactly scientific, but it’s not exactly nothing either. It’s rather interesting that the Reds would be the most hated team in Montana of all places. I don’t know who the favorite team in the state would be, but I can’t figure out how that would relate to hating the Reds. There are four minor league teams in that state and the Reds have one and it’s been affiliated with them since the mid-70’s. Missouri makes some sense because of the Cardinals, though I would have guessed the Cubs there. Though perhaps there are Cubs fans in the state who also hate the Reds? Pennsylvania because of the Pirates makes some sense. West Virginia is tough to figure out, though I guess there’s probably plenty of Pirates fans in the state.

It seems that Canada hates the Yankees and Red Sox. And for some weird reason the Padres and White Sox. I guess Detroit never forgave Reggie Jackson and the Athletics for Reggie Reggie Oxen Free hitting the transformer in the 1971 All-Star game.


20 Responses

  1. HavaKlu

    Following up on the Wednesday questions and answers—-Tim Beckham would not be a good fit for the Reds. From watching him with the Rays, he is weak at SS and makes bonehead plays. Would much rather see them put Suarez at short and give Gennett a shot at 3B if that move occurs until Senzel comes up

    • Wes

      I’m w ya. I’m riding out peraza before I give up prospects for a minor upgrade. I don’t see how you can give up on a 23 year old w 3 yrs of MLB experience when most players prime at 27+. Not saying he’s the answer but give him a season starting ss atleast before coming to the conclusion

      Also how many trades can reds make before they deplete the system? To me they need to shed an of, if (including cozart), and 1-2 starting pitchers. there’s room for 1 big trade and maybe a couple 1 for 1s. You give a couple prospects for Beckham and it hurts the ability to make more moves.

      • Doug Gray

        I’d argue that Tim Beckham could be more than a “minor upgrade”.

        He’s got some risk there, because he swings and misses a ton. But he was a 3.5 win player last year.

        And the Reds can make a lot of trades. First, we need to look at what they have to actually trade. They can trade one of Duvall or Schebler. They can trade Scooter Gennett. They can move a second base prospect – whether that’s Shed Long, Dilson Herrera or Alex Blandino.

        They’ve got two corner outfield options moving forward for the next 5 years with Winker and whichever other guy they keep. So, they can move outfield prospects, too. They’ve got center field options in the low minors, with no one being exactly close. So, they could move a Fairchild, Siri, Trammell, Gordon and still have options there.

        They’ve got a lot of starting pitching options. We’ve covered the nine guys they’ve got for 2018, and of them, only Tyler Mahle still qualifies as a prospect. You can afford to move a starting pitching prospect/young pitcher.

    • Doug Gray

      I don’t watch him play much, but the defensive metrics rated him above-average at shortstop last year. Like, well above-average.

      • HavaKlu

        The Rays traded for Adeiny Hechavarria because Beckham couldn’t handle shortstop—-that should tell you something. Unfortunately WAR does not reflect the bonehead plays he made.

      • Wes

        If Beckham is a 3-1 and it’s an of, if, sp then that leaves reds thin for next trade. So if they trade a 2nd 3/4 for 1 then they deplete system to make that happen. I think reds are jumping gun to do that. If Beckham is one for one- maybe worth risk but peraza should get a chance to earn it imo

  2. HavaKlu

    Wouldn’t get too excited over Elizalde’s start—–if I remmber right he did the same thing last year before settling down. If you look at his winter league stats for the last 3 years, they are unremarkable considering he’s playing in a weaker winter league than the Dominican or Venezuelan

    • Doug Gray

      I’m not sure it’s a weaker league, to be honest. There are way more veteran and older types of players in the Mexican Winter League. It may not be as “prospecty”, but I’d venture there very well could be better players there simply because more guys there are older.

  3. MK

    I really have no feelings about Detroit , I guess Cleveland area could I would have thought St.Louis at least equally in Ohio. Also surprised St. Louis in Indiana, my son lives there and there are a lot of Cards fans there. Guess nobody hates Cubs but at my house

  4. Brad

    Surprising that the state of Montana hates the Reds, however reliable this may be, with their affiliate in Billings.

    I am intrigued by Jurickson Profar. Looks like he still has 2 options remaining and may qualify for arbitration in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Have to wonder what a Profar for Garrett framework would end up looking like. I like Garrett a lot but am unsure he will figure it all out in 2018 or 2019 and stay on major league roster for entire season.

    That said, I am fine with Jose Peraza and his team control salary of approx. $560k starting at SS if Reds choose not to re-sign Cozart.

  5. Cbus

    Off topic but I’d love to see a deep dive on Duvall vs Schebler and who the Reds should keep as a starter moving forward assuming Winker takes 1 corner spot.

    Doug and most others seem to prefer Schebler and the 2017 numbers might lean that way but my eye test says I’d rather keep Duvall. Duvall seems more proven to repeat an ~.800 OPS every year with good D. He’s right handed which balances the current Reds lineup better. He’s a good breaking ball hitter and already has had an all-star appearance. His poor second halves two years in a row is a concern but seems like something that could be fixed.

    Schebler seems to have trouble with high fastballs and good breaking balls. He’s faster than Duvall but I wouldn’t say he’s a better defender. He has less of a proven track record and I’d argue is not as likely to repeat an ~.800 OPS. His left handedness I think works against him on this team that will already be left handed heavy.

    I guess it comes down to Duvall is pretty much what he is and can probably repeat a .300 OPB and .500 SLG with good D pretty reliably and has some upside if he can improve his 2nd halves. Schebler probably has more upside but I think also carries much more risk for regression.

    • Doug Gray

      Duvall walks less, strikes out more and in 2017 hit for less power, too. Not sure there’s much that suggests Duvall will or should be expected to hit better moving forward.

      • Cbus

        Don’t you think Schebler has a lower floor than Duvall? Duvall has proven what he is for 2 straight years now. I don’t think Schebler is as safe a bet.

    • Billy

      Why do we have to pick one?

      Schebler has a career .325 OBP and .474 SLG against right-handers. Duvall has a career .321 OBP and .483 SLG against left-handers. Neither of them are superstars, but both are serviceable to good players.

      What is wrong with platooning them? It would give us a solid 4th OF to rotate in to keep everyone fresh. And if someone did get hurt, it would protect us from an injury to a corner OF. Plus it would ensure that we’ve got a solid power bat on the bench ready to pinch hit each game. And they each play decent defense, so it isn’t going to kill you defensively if you need to pinch hit or make a double-switch. They’re not too expensive yet, and they’re not blocking a blue-chip corner OF prospect at the moment.

      The only downside to a platoon is that I just don’t see Price actually deploying them as a platoon. I think he should though, and I think it would make the team better next year.

      • Wes

        You answered your own question. Reds shoulda hired some no name up and comer to manage this year on a 1 or 2 year deal. W price no platoon.

      • Cguy

        You left out Winker’s career line vs lefties (.120/ .154./.354). I know that’s a small sample size (25 AB), but before Jesse is ordained as the starting corner of for the next 5-6 years, it’d be nice to see some production vs ML LHP & some at least average defense. I see no reason to trade any of the corner outfielders until mid-July 2018. Let’em settle it mano-to mano next year. As for Hamilton, he is what he is. Trade him, or live with it.

  6. Reaganspad

    So nobody hates the M’s, Arizona, Texas, Houston, Brewers, Indians, Balty, Toronto and either Florida team, KC, Phily, Mets and Denver?

    In a way I understand that

  7. MK

    I think Peraza’s comment speaks volumes about the future of Cozart’s future with the team. Sounds like the shortstop improvement is something the team told him to concentrate on this winter.

    • Jim Nazium

      Dick Williams often talks about contingency plans. I believe that is what this is regarding Peraza’s comment. I also believe the Reds have set the parameters for any Cozart deal and won’t go beyond them to sign him. That will be the first domino to fall this off-season, what they do with Cozart.
      Keeping both Cozart and Gennett gives them flexibility to pursue OF trades of 1, or 2 or all 3 outfielders.
      I’d keep Duvall. He is only backup 1B on the roster besides Kivlehan, who isn’t exactly guaranteed any spot. Another contingency plan.

      • Reaganspad

        Mesoraco can play first

        Use the force Luke

        Not the reason to keep Duvall