March 1, 2007

Reds Sign Dustin Hermanson

In an earlier diary (“Good Enough To Dream”), I wrote the following hopefully self-fulfilling prophecy: “…or maybe they get Dustin Hermanson and he has a year like he did with Chicago in 2005.”

Well, the first part happened today. According to the official release on the club website, which also quotes his glowing stats from his 2005 season with the White Sox, the Reds signed Hermanson, who's 34, to a one-year minor league contract, along with the obligatory invitation to help himself to the various amenities in Sarasota for spring training. He apparently was scheduled to take his physical in Cinci today, and is expected to report in Sarasota tomorrow.

I think it's a good deal. This is a guy who was arguably among the game's best closers as recently as 2005 (the last time he was healthy), and has pitched in the NLCS twice and in the World Series. If he makes the 25-man roster, he'll make $500,000 according to Trent's blog. If not, there will be one more arm for Rick Sweet to wave in from the bullpen in Louisville.

And if he returns to his 2005 form with the White Sox, the Reds will become the most recent team to pull their closer off of baseball's scrap heap, surpassing last year's Marlins (Joe Borowski) and Mariners (J.J. Putz), Kriv-Dawg will look like a genius, and all it will cost them is half a million recycled lithographs of George Washington.

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