After having been dormant for weeks, like a volcano waiting to blow, the Cincinnati Reds finally made a move.
While the signing of Jeff Francis may sound like the ghost of Christmas past coming back to life, it was a move that fills a necessity. C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer made a valid point that I whole heartedly agree with, that stated that with Jeff Francis being added to David Holmberg and Chien-Ming Wang, the Reds have a substantial amount of starting pitching depth. That’s not to mention super prospect Robert Stephenson, who may or may not see action at Great American Ball Park this season.
As last season certainly showed, the starting five at season’s beginning, may not be the same in July, and the same goes for September. With Tony Cingrani moving into the starting rotation full time, questions over his innings limit are sure to arise. Johnny Cueto has been oft injured, and whether it is his motion that causes the issues or not, getting a full season from Cueto might be an ambitious thought.
The other bit of news out of Cincinnati today concerned utility infielder Cesar Izturis and his departure to the Houston Astros. His numbers certainly did not manage to blow away fans and front office alike, but he had quite the flare for the dramatic. Izturis’ most notable moments were his walk-off hit against the Cubs on April 22nd, and his three hit day on September 7th against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Izturis has had a modest career at best, being only a one-time All-Star and Gold Glove winner, but ahead of his fourteenth year in the pros, Izturis knows how to handle himself. Similarly to how adding Carlos Pena and Rick Ankiel at the beginning of last season was supposed to help the young Astros along, the signing of Izturis will hopefully provide similar benefits. 19-year-old super prospect Carlos Correa may eventually force Izturis out of town before the end of the 2014 campaign, but expect Izturis to play hard and be humble up to his final day.