After a season that showed the Cincinnati Reds general manager had less cajones than Wayne Krivsky did when he pulled off the Trade–and yes, I’m referring somewhat positively to that travesty–Cincinnati Enquirer reporter John Erardi filed an excellent report about what the Reds should consider doing this off-season.
The question for the Reds this offseason is how to compete next year with an $85 million payroll.
Toward that end, they must 1.) Play the odds, and 2.) Make sure the entire organization is on board with the plan.
Item number two is particularly apt considering the obvious disconnect there has been between Jocketty and manager Dusty Baker. That clearly has to be addressed. In a season where Baker refused to test out the youngsters in the final month of a lost season, you have to wonder if the manager cared one whit about the general manager’s plan.
In addition, the team really has to consider whether it brings back Brandon Phillips and Francisco Cordero. Both have been very good, but as Erardi writes, there comes a time for a smaller-payroll time where a cost-benefit analysis must be performed. For them, there isn’t enough payroll flexibility to pay for what a player has done. Both Phillips and Cordero have been successful, but they are getting older. The team should consider finding cheaper alternatives.
I’m not totally sold on Erardi’s arguments against bringing the players back. But the team should be having these discussions. And they should trust their scouts and team to make the hard decisions. Doing that has made the Tampa Bay Devil Rays so successful.
It’s a tough spot for the Reds. Perhaps the best line in the article pertains to Cordero.
Keeping the manager from having to think is no reason to re-sign Cordero.
Amen. Every part of the organization has to be rock-solid, and has to be trusted. Just because Dusty Baker has a weakness for veterans is no reason to drop $10 million a year.
Last I checked, his contract is considerably less than that.