Friday, December 16, 2011

Pull The Trigger Already Walt!

Last year our two big "acquisitions" were signing Edgar Renteria and Fred Lewis. While I realize that the Reds are not a large market team like New York or Los Angeles and we aren't going to be in on any high end free agents like the Fielders or Pujols of the world, we are going in need of one thing. Pitching!

The Reds biggest issue at the moment may be replacing Francisco Cordero, who seems to be less likely to re-sign after each passing day. With closers like Brad Lidge and Ryan Madson on the market the club will likely sign a closer at a discount compared to the astronomical sum of twelve million dollars they were paying Cordero the last few years. Names from within have also surfaced as possibilities as closers such as; Homer Bailey, Aroldis Chapman, and Edinson Volquez. You can already forget about Bailey or Chapman closing. Chapman is likely to start this season and if not will stay in the bullpen as a set-up or long reliever. There is no way that Bailey is going to be a bullpen guy, assuming the Reds don't go out and sign two sure fire rotation guys, Bailey will be competing for a spot. That leaves Volquez, and I hate to say it, but I could see Volquez closing games, with an A+ fastball changup combonation all he would have to do is cut down on walks and I could see this as viable. Although I still feel the best option would be adding a closer via free agency.

Next we need to address the need that it seems the Reds lack every year. Top of the rotation starting pitching. It seems as though we are going to aquire this via Trade as opposed to free agency so we can look for a top end guy with a favorable contract situation. At the moment there are three guys that seem to be rising to the top of all the talks, Gio Gonzalez of the A's, James Shields of the Rays, and Jair Jurrgens of the Braves.

The A's were supposedly asking for Gonzalez the sum of Yonder Alonso, Yasmani Grandal, and another top prospect. Gio is a tough pitcher, one of the best in the game, but when you look at his K/BB ratio it is similar to that of one Edinson Volquez, Gonzalez also doesn't have a favorable groundball to flyball ratio which could fair poorly with a move to GABP.

James Shields is going to demand a kings ransom as well, but what you have to ask yourself, Is it worth it? The Reds only have Joey Votto under contract for two more seasons and seems unlikely to return to The Nati for the 2014 season. Is it worth selling a couple of your best farm pieces? Is Jocketty going to cement himself in Reds history as the GM that couldn't make a deal? Only time will tell, and time is beginning to pass this club by if nothing changes soon.

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