Cincinnati Reds State Of The Union: Is 2014 The Year?
BY Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): Follow @baseballaddicts
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For the Cincinnati Reds 2013 ended in a disappointment. The Reds won 90 games once again, finishing 3rd in the National League Central, but couldn’t get past the Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League Wild Card.
Right after the season the Reds manager Dusty Baker was fired. I could write a full post just on Dusty Baker and how many things he did right/wrong but I won’t get into that.
Billy Hamilton steals 4 bases in his 1st four Games
Lets hope that Price agrees with the new ways of thinking about the game. Not a manager that bunts every time he gets a chance.
Bunting kills your percentage of scoring multiple runs in an inning, just ask Brian Kenny. The Reds have plenty of talent on their roster, they just need someone to lead them to the promise land.
Looking at the Reds starting line-up for 2014, you will see a lot of familiar faces.
The outfield is a totally different story. Reds center fielder Shin-Soo Choo will most likely sign elsewhere, as the Reds front office won’t have enough money to pay him.
The numbers in parentheses is the money owed in 2014. The Reds are dishing out a third of their payroll to three players and I haven’t even gotten to the pitching staff yet.
The club’s front office is putting a lot of money and trust into those three players. Brandon Phillips is making the second most money on the team because he drove in 100 runs.
Everyone sees that and forgets that he hit .261, OBP of .310.
On top of that Phillips grounded into more double players in September than he had those precious RBI.
To wrap it all up Phillips hit a whopping .211 in the month of September, when the Reds needed him most. I could do another full post on Phillips but I will save that for another day.
There have been reports that the Reds might try to move Phillips to get money to try to re-sign Choo. This would be a smart move by the Reds front office if it can happen.
The franchise won’t be able to replace Choo’s offensive production next season if he does end up somewhere else.
On the other end of it, you will lose some defense at second base, but there are plenty of second basemen that can hit .260.
The pitching staff is owed a lot of money as well. Johnny Cueto is owed $10 Million after only pitching a total of 64 innings in 2013.
Not a good sign going forward for the Reds. Mat Latos really stepped up when needed during the regular season, but was injured when it came to October. He is owed $7.25 Million.
Sean Marshall was injured for more than three fourths of the season and he will make $5.5 Million in 2014. I could go on and on about the injuries and players not producing enough, but then I will get called a “bad fan”.
I’m not a bad fan, I’m a realist that has come to realize that the Reds are going nowhere with the leadership in place.
Is 2014 the Year of the Reds? I want it to be yes, but do I think it will be, no. There are too many guys on this team playing for themselves and no one else.
They would rather try to hit a home run with no one out and somebody on second, than try to hit the ball to the right side to advance the runner for the next guy to drive him in.
The hustle is ehh on most days and the energy is pathetic. When watching a game I feel like I am watching paint dry because the energy is so low.
It has something to do with the fans at the ball park, but again that is a whole other post. The Reds will have a huge step forward in 2014, but not enough to get over the hump.
Most likely not having Shin-Soo Choo will really hurt, as the offense will go from decent to terrible with him leaving.
Joey Votto will continue to be pitched around, via intentional or just normal walks. The club will need great seasons from Ryan Ludwick and Jay Bruce hitting behind him.
The changes will not be that severe to the club, yet maybe they will add a Veteran starter on the staff, perhaps a late inning reliever.
This team must see organizational players improve within for the team to keep its upward trajectory in a Division with the Cardinals and Bucs.
Tony Cingrani developing into a solid Rotation guy, Hamilton playing to his capability – and renaissance years from Phillips (or assets acquired for him – and Ludwick) would go a long way to see the team make another post season push, – and to advance this time around.
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Posted on December 4, 2013, in MLB Teams State Of the Unions, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged 2010 NLDS, 2012 NLDS, 2013 Wild card Game, @baseballaddicts on twitter, aroldis chapman, barry larkin, BIlly Hamilton, brandon phillips, brian price, Bronson Arroyo, bruche bochy, cincinnati reds, drew stubbs, dusty baker, homer bailey, jack hannahan, jay bruce, joey votto, johnny cueto, jonathan broxton, mat latos, Mike Leake, national league, NL Central, ryan ludwick, ryan ritchey, Sean Marshall, shin-soo choo, tony cingrani. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.