February 13, 2007

Spring training

Why do the Reds take so long? Pitchers and catchers report for the Yankees today!

This is a brutal time of year. The Super Bowl, even the Pro Bowl, are in the rear-view mirror, and spring training has not yet started. Arrghhh.

Some teeny bits of news….

According to this Reds press release, RHP Matt Belisle, LHP Bill Bray, RHP Jared Burton, RHP Todd Coffey, LHP Jon Coutlangus, OF Bubba Crosby, OF Chris Denorfia, OF Chris Dickerson, IF/OF Ryan Freel, OF Josh Hamilton, RHP Gary Majewski, LHP Eric Milton, LHP Brian Shackelford and 1B Joey Votto are already in Sarasota, working out on their own.

Krivsky is there already, too.

The Cincinnati Enquirer has posted a projected 25-man roster and lineup. I don't like it. And not just because they don't see Bubba making the cut. Hamilton and Conine as the only reserve OFers? And about that three catchers thing…

If Bubba is already down in Florida, he must have just arrived. He's been training in Arizona the past few weeks. He returned to Houston this weekend for his brother's wedding.

Bubba Crosby highlights

Here's hoping for lots more highlights this season….

9 comments to “Spring training”

  1. smartelf says:

    I think I’d rather have Crosby than both Conine or Hamilton. Hamilton has never faced major league pitching and Conine is over-the-hill and ready to be put out to pasture. I have nothing against Conine, but if Crosby shows anything this Spring, his youth needs to trump experience. I hope he gets a legitimate shot. hamilton is a feel-good story but I really don’t see him solving major league pitching without properly paying his dues in the minors. What kind of message would that make if he makes the club and Denorfia doesn’t? Only way Hamilton should make this club is if he has a dynamite Spring. The pressures of major league lifestyle might even trigger a relapse. I hope he is not a shoe-in is what I am saying.

  2. BubbaFan says:

    I see the copyright police have already taken down the vid. You can see it [url=http://www.bubba-crosby.com/video/hot_tonight.rm]here[/url] instead. 😛

    I’d rather have gotten Craig Wilson than Conine, but I think Conine will be a good infielder. And he’s got a decent stick. I don’t think he should be used much as an outfielder. I know defensive stats are problematic, but according to my favorite, BP’s rate, he’s worse than Bernie Williams as a corner OFer.

    I dunno…with Dunn and Griffey starting, it just seems like you’d want a defensive upgrade (or two) for a backup. I would think two out of the following three would make the roster: Crosby, Denorfia, Hopper. But if Hamilton is getting a slot no matter what, and one spot will be taken by a third catcher, there won’t be room for that many OFers.

    Though they can always call them up later. Bubba has a split contract, so they could start him in Louisville, and Denorfia and Hopper still have options left.

  3. smartelf says:

    Yea anyone with options is almost guaranteed to start in Louisville in order to give Hamilton a shot. I am guessing he will eventually fade and someone will get called up to replace him, whoever is doing the best at AAA. I didn’t know Bubba has a split contract, so I am guessing they will start him in Louisville unless he has a VERY impressive spring. It’s the way things usually work on this club. The three catcher thing is pretty obnoxious, but they really like using Javy as a PHer in game winning situations.. then again those are usually 9th inning situations, so I don’t know why need a third catcher for that. Can’t Hatteberg put on the gear in a pinch? He wasn’t a catcher that long ago. If it means freeing up a roster slot I am inclined to go in that direction if I am the GM or manager.

  4. BubbaFan says:

    I’m hoping Bubba does have a very impressive spring. He’s done it before. Last spring he didn’t do that well, but he missed a lot of time with an injury. (Just a fluky thing: he got hit on the finger during a bunting drill. He does something like two hours of bunting drills every day.) His first spring training with the Yankees, he hit .357 / .386 / .690 / 1.076 and made the roster even though no rookie had ever made the team out of spring training in the Torre era. Didn’t last, though. He hit homers in his first two regular season games, and played outstanding defense. The announcers were raving over the great routes he took in the outfield. It got him a two-week stint on the bench, then a ticket back to Columbus. 😛

    So it’s not just the Reds. Kids with options left are vital to roster management. Especially if you have three catchers (or 14 pitchers, as the Yankees sometimes did last season).

    I think most teams have an emergency catcher for the third catcher. A guy who could do it if necessary, but usually plays another position. A Craig Wilson type. For the Yanks, it’s Miguel Cairo, the utility infielder.

    Sigh. I really wish they could’ve gotten Craig Wilson.

  5. Zeldink says:

    Maybe Krivsky didn’t know that Wilson had catching experience.

    As it is, the Reds currently plan to open the season with five catchers. I’m counting emergency backup types in this list.
    1. David Ross
    2. Javier Valentín
    3. Chad Moeller
    4. Scott Hatteberg
    5. Ryan Freel.

    I don’t know, but to me, that seems excessive.

  6. BubbaFan says:

    [quote]Maybe Krivsky didn’t know that Wilson had catching experience.[/quote]

    😀 Darn! Someone should have told him that Wilson came up as a catcher.

    I didn’t know Freel could catch. Jeez, is there anything he doesn’t do? He’s another Chone Figgins.

  7. Zeldink says:

    He doesn’t actually have any catching experience, but he has been referred to as the emergency backup catcher more than once. I’m hoping that some year he gets to play a game at every position.

  8. KC2HMZ says:

    For lack of a better place to insert this comment…Regarding the current poll (about the surprise Grapefruit League star for this year), where one of the four possible selections is:

    “Bubba Crosby. Can one team contain two short, speedy white guys with hustle?”

    (I just *know* BF has to have been one of the people who voted for this one)

    My immediate thought upon reading that answer in the poll, was “Hell, yeah. Mets, 1986, Len Dykstra and Wally Backman.”

    Lest I be accused of posting stuff that has nothing to do with the Reds, there are several connections between the Reds and that ’86 Mets team.

    The Mets manager was Davey Johnson, who later managed the Reds for three years and won a division title here in 1995. Future Reds Stan Jefferson and Kevin Mitchell were on the team, along with former Reds Bruce Berenyi and George Foster, plus former Reds player and future Reds coach and manager Ray Knight. And if you really want to stretch it, the cousin of future Reds manager Lou Piniella was there also – Dave Magadan. And Danny Heap, nephew of Matt Batts, a catcher who had a few cups of coffee with the Reds back in the mid-1950’s.

    Anyway, the ’86 Mets won 108 regular-season games, winning their division by 21 games, and won the World Series. That was the Mets’ first World Series title in 17 years. Which is exactly how long it’s been since the Reds last won it all, in 1990. We’re talkin’ mojo, here, people. This is our year!

  9. BubbaFan says:

    [quote](I just *know* BF has to have been one of the people who voted for this one)[/quote]

    Wow! You must be psychic! 😀

    FWIW, Lenny Dykstra was Bubba’s favorite player when he was growing up.

    That 1986 World Series was one reason I became a baseball fan. I was raised in a strictly football family, and thought baseball was the most boring game ever. But all my friends were watching that WS, and I started to get interested, too.