The information highway that is the internet will often feed us many stories. Some are true. Some are fictitious. Some are speculative. Some are opinion pieces. We have many in which to choose.
These days, it’s all about the rumors and the opinions of those rumors. This is one of those.
With Joey Votto on the mend from knee surgery, it appears the light under Walt Jocketty’s chair grew in intensity. SI’s Tom Verducci produced a telling article about the importance of Votto and the names being linked to the Reds in trade talks. Let’s address the names Verducci mentions and they are in no particular order…
1. Juan Pierre – long a fave of our own Tyler Grote. Long might be an understatement. That link is from January! Pierre is posting another good season, this year as a member of the Phillies. He is a rental, but an extremely inexpensive one. He has been primarily the #2 guy in Charlie Manuel’s batting order (.325/.356), but has a few games (17) as the guy atop the order (.276/.306).
Issue? Acquiring Pierre could mean lessening playing time of Ryan Ludwick, Chris Heisey and Drew Stubbs. Pierre has been Philly’s principle left fielder, but has played center in the past, but hasn’t since 2009.
2. Shane Victorino – covered in a previous post…and I’m still not convinced he’s the answer, let alone an answer. Higher priced rental (remainder of $9.5MM) than the aforementioned Pierre (entire 2012 season is $800k) and even less of an offensive threat this season. In the midst of his worst offensive season as a pro.
3. Coco Crisp – been down this trail as well. Practically since the first day I’ve been here at BRM (July 2010), it seems there has been at least a murmur of Crisp and the Reds. Crisp started slow this year (.206 BA in April) and saw time on the disabled list in May. Since coming off the DL, he’s only hitting .248 with an OBP of .308. Yes, those are higher than what the Reds are currently getting from their lead-off guys (.203/.249). In 26 games where Crisp has been the top of the order guy, he’s batting .287 with an OBP of .348.
Crisp signed a 2 year, $14MM deal prior to this season. There’s also a $7.5MM team option with a $1M buyout. Got to wonder of the A’s are actually considering trading him now. Oakland is currently in the hunt for a wild card spot (0.5 GB). No, I’m not making that up either.
4. Ryan Sweeney – honestly, now. Maybe the main reason Sweeney’s name is here is because he’s a lefty. Not a power guy (14 career HR in 7 seasons). Not a speed guy (17-for-26 in career steal attempts). He does hit for a decent average (.282 career) and gets on base at a nice clip (.339 career OBP).
He’s not as cheap as Pierre as Sweeney is on a one-year deal that has him making $1.75MM. He’s the second least expensive option, though.
Span is on the third year of a five year deal that will see him make $16.5MM. He’s only making $3MM this year. That goes up to $4.75MM next year and $6.5MM in the final year. Span has played well this year in relation to the first two years of this deal. After a pair of seasons where he hit .264, Span is currently hitting .286 and he’s pushed his OBP to .351. Doubt you would find a Reds fan that would not want those numbers.
6. David DeJesus – when this deal was announced, a lot of heads were turned (2 years, $10MM with an option for a third year at 6.5MM). Considering DeJesus is 32, some felt the Cubs overpaid for his services. While his batting average might not be all that appealing (.267), he does own an OBP of .358. Most of these numbers come with DeJesus hitting from the lead-off spot (.291/.375/.387) in Dale Sveum’s lineup.
If there would be a roadblock, I’ll guess it’s a combination of the contract and age. Not so much the age factor as Ryan Ludwick was brought in and he’s now 34 (Happy belated birthday, Ryan!. It was on the 13th of this month…)
That’s for the six names Verducci submitted in his article. Verducci does state these are some of the names.
Like or not? Others?