Daily Archives: September 13, 2010

September 13, 2010

Reds Acquire Bloomquist from Royals

July 28, 2010: Right fielder Willie Bloomquist  of the Kansas City Royals drives in two runs with a base hit during a game against the Minnesota Twins at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. The Twins won 6-4.

It’s such a very brief post that I’m including it all here, but click the link to ESPN for updates:

CINCINNATI — The Cincinnati Reds have acquired utilityman Willie Bloomquist from the Kansas City Royals for either a player to be named or cash.

Bloomquist will join the NL Central-leading Reds for the stretch drive. They began the day with a six-game lead over St. Louis.

Bloomquist had been set to start in left field Monday in the Royals’ game against Oakland. He hit .265 with three home runs and 17 RBIs this season.

The 32-year-old Bloomquist has started games this year at second base, third base, left field, center field and designated hitter. He had a nine-game hitting streak snapped over the weekend.

I like to see a utilityman in the mix, and those 3 homers and 17 RBI come in only 170 ABs. I don’t know anything about this guy, but I do have to wonder about a fella who only got 73 starts with the Royals.

September 13, 2010

Cincinnati’s Closer Situation

The Reds 2-1 series win over the Pittsburgh Pirates this weekend is a little deceptive. A person who didn’t watch the games might think any of a number of baseball cliches about the Pirates (even a blind squirrel finds a nut sometimes, anyone with a bat is a threat, and so on), but those who saw the games can’t dismiss the outcome with a pithy phrase.

Cincinnati Reds Aroldis Chapman hits 103 MPH on the radar gun as he pitches the eighth inning to the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on September 4, 2010. UPI/Bill Greenblatt Photo via NewscomWhile the young starting pitchers who led the charge–Homer Bailey, Edinson Volquez, and Johnny Cueto–were total bad-asses, they had to overcome not just the Pirates’ offense but also the Reds’ lack of offense. Throw in some relievers who weren’t up to the challenge, and there wasn’t a win to be had for any of them. Two games required extra-inning heroics to bring home and one was already too far out of hand for even that.

Folks are pretty down on Francisco Cordero, who put Sunday’s game out of reach and hasn’t exactly been what you’d call “nails” for a couple outings now. Rocktman65 wants Aroldis Chapman to take over as closer. Red Reporter wants closer by committee. Dusty Baker has some level-headed words on the matter:

We all feel terrible for [Cordero],” Baker said. “We need him badly because he’s our closer. Nobody else is really ready to close. He’s our closer. I know people are hollering for this person and that person. What happens when the next person doesn’t do it? Then you’ll be hollering for somebody else. You can’t keep doing that.

Personally, I don’t want to see Cordero officially replaced yet. For one thing, that’s terribly demoralizing, and he’d probably start walking even more people than usual. For another, GM Walt Jocketty would refuse to take him off the roster and we’d be looking at a 25 man roster that’s really only 22 (counting Jim Edmonds and Jay Bruce, who are too hurt to play but still taking up spots).

A more insidious problem, in my estimation, is the offense that goes mysteriously dry from time-to-time. Should the Reds really have been going into the ninth inning with only a 0-1 lead against one Brian Burres? His 5.22 ERA might be pretty good by Pirates’ standards, but this was the number-one-and-pulling away team in the division they were up against. Asking for three more runs from the Reds’ offense doesn’t seem unreasonable when you might reasonably expect them to pull down five more than they did against this guy.

But that is, as the pithy statement goes, why they play the game. The already-eliminated Diamondbacks visit GABP tonight, bringing with them their 57-86 record. Hopefully they won’t prove to be a much of a challenge as the last crappy team who came to town.