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Why The Reds Will Not Be Able To Obtain Bullpen Help

Posted by Condo on April 29, 2007

As one of our “Nasty Boys,” Matt, mentioned in his previous article, the Reds will most likely not contend past mid-July without going out and getting some bullpen help. Here is the problem that the Reds face in trying to get bullpen help, when you are in the season, and especially when you get closer to the trade deadline, attempting to trade for bullpen help is a premium, which will cost you key prospects if you want to get quality relievers.

The biggest problem the Reds face is not having many key prospects that they could afford to trade away. The top prospects in the system are starting pitcher Homer Bailey (#5 in the Top 100 according to Baseball America) who is 1-1 with a 1.69 ERA and 13 K’s at AAA Louisville; outfielder Jay Bruce (#14 in the Top 100 according to Baseball America) who is hitting .330 with 3 HR and 10 RBIs at High A Sarasota; 1st baseman Joey Votto (#43 in the Top 100 according to Baseball America) who is hitting .203 with with 2 HR and 11 RBIs at AAA Louisville; and outfielder Drew Stubbs (#88 in the Top 100 according to Baseball America) who is hitting .289 with 2 HR and 10 RBIs for Low A Dayton.

To obtain one quality reliever, it would probably cost you at least one of those 4 prospects to do that, and I would imagine that Homer Bailey is on the list of untouchables for the Reds. Votto, I believe, is one year away from being a quality first baseman for the Reds for several years to come as well and would end the platoon of Conine and Hatteberg at first base. And while you may think that Stubbs or Bruce are expendable, given the Reds outfield situation, I can’t think of any teams that are looking for A ball outfielders in exchange for quality major league relievers.

Because of this, and the Reds being a small market ballclub (one of the smallest markets in MLB) they again will most likely strike out on obtaining the quality relievers that they need in order to make a post season push. The Reds will have to build pitching through the draft over the next few years if they want to compete for a playoff spot in the coming years and it will take time. I think Krivsky is on the right track, so be patient Reds fans, this year may not be the year, but if Krivsky starts drafting right, the Reds are a team to watch in the upcoming years.

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