I’ll Give You a Hint: It’s Not Wagner
On Friday the Reds designated for assignment D'Angelo Jimenez as part of an effort to shake up the roster and get this team winning. The strategy looked like it might have met some success when the Reds won against the Indians on Friday. However, the Indians proceeded to take the next two games to win the series, and it now looks like the win on Friday had more to do with Aaron Harang's performance, Felipe Lopez's homerun, the phase of the moon, or just dumb luck than with the roster move.
While the move didn't exactly seem bad, it didn't address the pitching situation, which has consistently been the gimpy leg of this team. The move seemed arbitrary, especially when the Reds brought up Luis Lopez, a utility infielder who, no matter how you slice it, just isn't better than Jimenez. It looked like Jimenez was the odd-man out, the victim of a slow start and a desperate team's attempt to make a point by cutting a big contract.
Soon, though, media outlets began tell a very different story: true, Jimenez was starting slow, but he also wasn't trying very hard to get going. He was complacent, overweight, sullen, and mean: basically, he was the cantankerous uncle whom you never want to invite to family gatherings because he insults the cooking and picks his toes at the dinner table. Right after Jimenez was cut, each media outlet had quoted lip-service from someone about how now they suddenly realized that their jobs were not safe, but it had a hollow ring once we found out that the players probably agreed with the decision.
Here we are three games later, and it's clear that more needs to be done. Assuming all of the new revelations about Jimenez are true, then we can probably get behind the decision and encourage more along those lines.
What we're looking for is someone, preferably on the pitching staff this time, who is not performing to expectations. Someone who has used his time in the press to shift the focus away from his own shortcomings at every opportunity. Someone who has not managed to stay at the weight he was at when he was pitching great a few years ago. Someone who's making more money than he's worth. Someone who has buddies on the team who will be genuinely surprised, angered, and threatened to see him go. Someone who, no matter how much he pisses off the fans, has always appeared to be totally safe, until now.
Because that's the person the Reds are going to have to rid themselves of if they really want to make a point.
Does this person exist on the Reds? Yeah, I think so, but I'll let you draw your own conclusion. Disappointed that I won't just come out and say it? In that case, I encourage you to boo me.