Cincinnati Reds Spring Training Preview – Is there any move that they should have made that they didn’t?

Mandatory Credit: Kareem Elgazzar/Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kareem Elgazzar/Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY Sports /

Is there any move that the Cincinnati Reds should have made that they didn’t?

The Cincinnati Reds should have brought back Ross Ohlendorf in a heartbeat. He is a veteran of the MLB who changed himself from a starter to a reliever and could have been a great mentor for the prospects.  He never got a fair shot last season and the fans should be ashamed.

At the end of the season Ohlendorf’s ERA+ was 92 or the MLB ERA was 92 percent of his final ERA. That means that Ohlendorf was just below average over the length of the season.  He also faced more batters in relief than at any previous time in his career.

He was taking one for the team and the Reds’ response was to let him sign a one year deal to play in Japan. Three times last season he came on in the middle of an inning where Tony Cingrani had already blown the save and Ohlendorf took the loss.  You take away those three losses and suddenly Ohlendorf is 5-4.

Ohlendorf pitched more big league innings last year than he had since 2010 when he was a starting pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates. While carrying this much of a load he maintained a strikeout/walk ratio of 2.13. He also maintained an average of more than a strikeout per inning.

The Cincinnati Reds should have moved some of their overvalued relievers, too.

The relief pitching market was also awfully expensive this season. Reds’ reliever Blake Wood has similar career peripherals to new Saint Louis Cardinal Brett Cecil.  Cecil is going to earn more than three times the amount of money this season than Wood will.

Raisel Iglesias is in a similar position. He will be eligible for arbitration following the 2017 season.  He is penciled into the primary set-up role supporting Michael Lorenzen as the closer.

Auctioning off Wood and Iglesias would have made more sense than trading Straily. Wood likely won’t be around when the Reds are ready to compete again and Iglesias could be expensive.  The Reds need to make deals like these to maintain a good average age and an affordable roster.

The Reds also should have signed a veteran catcher with starting major league experience. Kurt Suzuki was a name tossed about and he is still available.  The hotter names were former Red Ryan Hanigan and Chris Ianetta.

Next: Spring Training Preview - Was it a good off-season?

Re-signing Ohlendorf, trading away Iglesias and Wood, and signing Suzuki are the three moves that made sense this off-season that didn’t happen. All three are aimed at helping the young pitchers develop.  That is the key for this season for the Reds