Reds in 2013: Todd Frazier


I don’t believe there was a single player on the Reds 2012 roster that captivated Cincinnati more than Toms River, New Jersey’s own Todd Frazier. Try to tell me some other player that did.

Frazier enjoyed a season rookies can only hope to duplicate. No, he didn’t win the NL Rookie of the Year. Well, the one awarded by the Baseball Writers, anyway. The MLBPA voted the ToddFather it’s NL ROY. We can go on about saving a guy’s life, recently tying the knot or even being possibly the most vital cog for the 2012 Reds, but that road has been traveled…a lot.

Aug. 29, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Frazier in the seventh inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

Entering 2012, Frazier was set to make the trip north to Cincinnati as soon as the team broke spring training. There was an issue, though. The Reds added another bullpen arm in Alfredo Simon and Frazier was sent to Louisville to begin the 2012 season. Many didn’t figure it would be long before Frazier found GABP. All it took was a Scott Rolen injury.

That didn’t take long as Frazier was promoted, this time for good, in mid-April. Little did the city of Cincinnati realize what was about to hit. The Jersey hero would make an impact, not only to the Reds, but to the city as a whole. The lore of the ToddFather was set for its birth. And for that, we Reds fans are thankful.

As far as Frazier’s production, here ya go…

Only having this much service time can make projecting what Frazier will do for the 2013 campaign a wee bit difficult. Well, here’s two separate projections. One is the Bill James via Fangraphs. The other is, as I mentioned on a couple of occasions, CAIRO.

It’s a mixed bag, isn’t it? So, what can we honestly expect from Frazier next season?

One thing we do know, providing he stays healthy, is that Frazier should play closer to the number of games CAIRO projects. Offensively, we hope that Frazier projects more toward the triple slash as James foresees. It’s not that unreasonable to do so, and as we look at Frazier’s averages over his first season and a portion of 2011, the James projected slash is more in line with Frazier’s “average production”.

Realistically speaking, we honestly don’t “know” enough to hone in on what to expect.

The one aspect that isn’t as widely talked about is that of defense. No one will confuse Frazier with the Gold Gloves that Scott Rolen owns. Rolen possesses those 8 Gold Gloves for a reason. We saw glimpses of such last season from him. That said, Frazier can hold his own at the position, but to expect the same from Frazier is extremely unfair.

If Frazier does play in 146 games, or there about, I can see 20+ HR and around 80 RBI along with average defense. Coming from a potential 6th spot in the batting order and permanently replacing a potential Hall of Famer in Rolen, that would sure make for a nice second full season as a Redleg.

(Catch other entries from the “Reds in 2013” series:
Joey Votto
Brandon Phillips
Jay Bruce
Shin-Soo Choo
Ryan Ludwick)