Category Archives: jay bruce

2016 MLB Season Preview: Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds 2016 MLB season preview america's white boyThe Cincinnati Reds┬ástarted unloading players at last year’s trade deadline and continued to clean house this offseason. They are now building toward the future and still have some pieces to move.

The Reds┬áhad rookies start nearly every game from the trade deadline until the end of last season. They gained experience and they overall pitched well above expectations. They won’t have a solid bullpen backing them up this year.

Will Jay Bruce and Brandon Phillips both find new homes this season?

Here is the 2016 MLB season preview for the Cincinnati Reds.

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2015 MLB Team Preview: Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds 2015 MLB team preview Rob Lowe funny weird shirtless vintageThe Cincinnati Reds have been NL Central contenders for the last few years, but Pittsburgh and St. Louis have taken control of the division. The destiny of the Reds rides on the health of Joey Votto, who missed a huge chunk of time in two of the last three seasons.

The Reds will rely heavily on their starting rotation. They do have a slight edge in that category over the top teams in the NL Central. They need their offense to come back (28th in Runs Scored in 2014) in order to take advantage of having aces Johnny Cueto and Homer Bailey.

Can Devin Mesoraco become an elite catcher?

Here is the 2015 MLB season preview for the Cincinnati Reds.

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2014 MLB Team Preview: Cincinnati Reds

Sexy Hot Cincinnati Reds fan girl 2014 MLB Team PreviewThe Cincinnati Reds have been NL Central contenders for the last few years, but Pittsburgh emerged and St. Louis doesn’t seem to have an off-year. They lost Shin-Soo Choo and Bronson Arroyo to free agency and didn’t do much in free agency.

Their biggest offseason move was firing Dusty Baker. They hired pitching coach Bryan Price as their new skipper. He’s an experienced and heralded pitching coach, but this will be his first season as a manager.

The Reds will rely heavily on Jay Bruce and Joey Votto to drive in runs this season. They also need Todd Frazier to bounce back from a forgettable 2013 season. It’s not much to ask since he looked like a future All-Star his rookie season.

Super prospect Billy Hamilton is expected to be on the Opening Day roster. He is one of the best base runners in all of baseball, but is expected to have issues getting on base. Will he succeed or end up in the minors at some point?

Here is the 2014 MLB season preview for the Cincinnati Reds.

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2013 MLB Team Preview: Cincinnati Reds

BAKERIn 2012, the Cincinnati Reds won the NL Central by nine games, but lost in the first round of the playoffs to the eventual World Series champion San Francisco Giants.

Walt Jocketty, the general manager of the Reds, doesn’t want to just make the playoffs, he wants to win. He made a trade in the offseason to acquire Shin-Soo Choo, a move shows the Reds are built to win now.

The biggest offseason news was the decision to move Aroldis Chapman into the starting rotation. He was such a dominant relief pitcher, but the transition has been successful with pitchers in the past. Will Chapman succeed as a starter?

Now that Joey Votto is healthy, will have another MVP caliber year?

Here is the 2013 MLB season preview for the Cincinnati Reds. Continue reading

Fire Dusty Baker

I am finally going to take part in the whole blog stereotype by calling for someone’s job. I have yet to do it in all of my time as a blogger, but it needs to be done. Dusty Baker, the manager of the Cincinnati Reds, needs to be fired. To make it even more clear, I’m not even a Reds fan, not at all. I live in Columbus, OH, so I get every Reds game on Fox Sports Ohio, but I usually just watch them if they are playing the Cubs or I see a guy on my fantasy baseball team up to bat.

Dusty Baker is like Godzilla destroying the Reds, one pitcher at a time. Last season, a lot of the experts expected the Reds to have a good season. Their pitching staff was rated as one of the best, since they had young arms like Edinson Volquez and Johnny Cueto. The mood was high and every Reds fan was excited about the young arms and guys like Jay Bruce waiting in the minors waiting to be called up. Baker had success with the Giants and Cubs as the manager, even making it deep in the playoffs with both teams. After Baker left, it looked like a 100-foot lizard destroyed the entire franchise.

Let’s start with Baker’s destruction of young pitching. I would like to coin a word and say the “Bakerification” of a pitcher, which would be the utter and total annihilation of a young pitcher’s career. In San Francisco, Baker the only elite pitching prospect that the Giants had while he was manager was Shawn Estes. He was teh 11th overall pick in the 1991 MLB amateur draft. He made his pro debut in ’95, and had a great year in ’97 (19-5 3.18 ERA). He had a good 2 1/2 year run as an elite pitcher, but he fell off the face of the earth. Except one decent year in Colorado, he has bounced around as a 5th or spot starter. Baker used him and pushed him over 200 innings and kept him in games in which they were behind by a large number of runs.

In Chicago he had a full plate of young pitching prospects. Kerry Wood and Mark Prior being the best two young pitchers the Cubs had seen since Greg Maddux. They had high expectations and were going to be a great #1 and #2 starters for a long time. After the 2003 season, both pitchers were never the same. They have missed complete seasons each and have had a laundry list of arm problems. Prior hasn’t really pitched in the big leagues since and Wood was converted to a closer, but not as dominant as he once was (he is a closer for Cleveland and has a 4.72 ERA this season). The lone young pitcher that seems to be standing after the Baker era in Chicago is Carlos Zambrano. I think there must be some truth to the rumors that he is actually a zombie.

This all circles back to the present-day Cincinnati Reds. It was announced last week that Edinson Volquez underwent Tommy John surgery and could miss the entire next season, as well as the rest of this season. To add more fuel to the fire, Johnny Cueto has had arm troubles this season and he’s now injured with a hip injury. Bronson Arroyo and Aaron Harang both had great season a few seasons before Baker became skipper, but the last two years they have been horrible. You can’t blame run support for their losses, since they have been sporting ERA around 5.00. So it’s not only the young pitchers who are prone to “Bakerification.”

You can’t blame GM Walk Jocketty for sticking with Dusty Baker. He was the man who hired Tony LaRussa in St. Louis, so he likes guys with winning experience. I think it’s time to let Baker go and find a man himself. The former GM Wayne Krivsky hired Baker as a last-ditch effort to save his job, kind of a desperate man’s final meal. He needed to make a splash, but he clearly had no plan for the future of the club. He was hoping that Baker could catch lightning in a bottle, but I think he more or less caught something else that needs some penicillin to clear up.

Once again, I would like to reiterate that I am not a Reds fan, I’m a Cubs fan, but I would like to see them competitive again. I have the same feeling about the Pirates too, but if both of those franchises ever get to a point where they are actually contending for the NL Central, I may not be too pleased. The Reds need to be blown up and get rid of guys like Harang and Arroya and build around some guys like Bruce, Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, and future-star Yonder Alonso. The start this process, fire Dusty Baker!

Jay Bruce – The Next Dunn or Kearns?

Jay Bruce was the most heralded prospect for the Reds since Pete Rose. The hoopla that surrounded him last season when he was called up was phenomenal. He tore up pitching the first two weeks into the league before cooling off and hitting a little rookie wall towards the end of the season. Before this season, I drafted Bruce in nearly every fantasy baseball league that I am in. He has hit 18 homers so far in 2009, but his average has been hovering around .200 for most of the season. While fielding a ball in the outfield, Bruce broke his wrist and is likely out for 6-8 weeks, nearly most of the rest of the season. I have analyzed Bruce’s stats at the beginning of his career. When he was called up, comparisons of Rose, Bench, and Morgan were there, but so far he has not lived up to the hype. Would a comparison to ex-Reds Adam Dunn or Austin Kearns be more reasonable?

Bruce is a much better fielder than both Dunn and Kearns, so the comparison is clearly based on his ability at the plate. We all know that they both hit home-runs out of Great American Ballpark at an alarming rate early in their careers, but it is a hitter’s ballpark. Dunn’s minor league numbers translated similar into the pros, since he hit homers, walked a lot, but struck out at a high-rate. Austin Kearns spent three season in the minors, but clearly didn’t have the home run totals that Dunn put up at the high minor league level. He hit at a better average and didn’t strike out as much. Dunn and Kearns are different hitters when it comes to their splits stats when facing LHP vs. RHP. Dunn can hit for power against both lefties and righties, but Kearns did not have any power when facing southpaws.

Jay Bruce has similaries to both Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns early in their careers. Bruce is similar to Austin Kearns, because he has no power against LHP and he does not have a high strikeout rate. Bruce’s similarities to Dunn relates to batting average and power. Dunn swings for the fences with every at-bat, Bruces swings for the fences, but not as much. Bruce has not shown the ability to hit for average in his minor league career and doesn’t look like he will be winning any batting average during his career. He could end up with a career batting average similar to Dunn, but Bruce has more speed than Dunn ever had in his career.

My final analysis is that Bruce’s future is still to be determined. His 2009 season is forgettable and has had a bad luck. I’m not completely referring to his wrist injury, but his BABIP (Batting Average for Balls In Play) is one of the lowest in the league. He has not had the lucky bounces that other players have received this year. I would say that he looks to be more like Adam Dunn at this point in his career, but he could still be a more complete player in the long-term. “Bruce Almighty” may have all the fans in Cincinnati worried right now, but they still need a lot of pieces before the Reds are fending for the NL Central crown. Let’s just hope that in five year’s time, Bruce isn’t playing for the Washington Nationals like Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns.

A Sports & Entertainment blog that focuses on absurdity in sports, snarky banter, updates on Tim Tebow’s virginity, and decent sports gambling advice.

It’s Been Too Long My Friends…

I just wanted to post a picture of Katy Perry, I still have a crush. Anyways, it’s been too long since I last posted, I’m in the middle of a lot of things and I have had zero time to work on it. I’m in the middle of moving the national headquarters of America’s White Boy to another apartment, plus one of my roommates had to pay her court fines (don’t drink and drive, folks) and she isn’t going to pay the internet bill. So until mid-July, I am stuck using very inconsistent wireless internet. Instead of posting a thousand new posts about things that I would like to talk about, I am going the cheap route and throwing you some bullet-points.

– The Cubs are still awesome
– Whoever the Bulls pick #1, they will wish they had picked the other guy
– Apparently Asian pitchers are never taught to run the bases (Yankees are finding out the hard way)
– If Chris Lofton goes undrafted, it’s a shame
– Rajon Rondo is a beast
– Glen Davis should always keep his shirt on
– Rocco Mediate isn’t a pool cleaner
– Kobe knows how Shaq’s ass tastes
– Carlos Zambrano can feel pain
– Lou Pinella and Ozzie Guillen will put out a rap album and it will be better than the last Jay-Z album (not hard to do)
– Katy Perry shouldn’t marry the guy from Gym Class Heroes, she must not have gotten the memo of my availability
– The new Alkaline Trio album is very good
– ESPN Fantasy Focus Podcast is my new addiction (they read an email of mine last week)
– I did not receive a million dollars from Vince McMahon of the WWE
– Jay Bruce isn’t curing cancer
– Jermaine O’Neal will be traded before the NBA Draft, Pacers will still be bad
– During the NBA Draft you will hear multiple comparisons of European prospects are the next A) Dirk Nowitzki B) Pau Gasol C) Tony Parker, but in fact none will be.
– No one watches the NHL Draft (I actually attended last year’s, so sad)
– Price Fielder, Bartolo Colon, C.C. Sabathia, and Sidney Ponson can win a tug-of-war contest against the entire Tampa Bay Rays 40-man roster
– Gemma Atkinson is a one-percenter
– Kevin Garnett either thanked ‘Sota, as in Minnesota, or he thanked ‘soda,’ which would lead me to believe that he loves Barq’s Root Beer, A LOT!
– Frisky Dingo is hilarious (Boosh!)
– I still don’t know why Soulja Boy and Ice T are yelling at each other, it’s like watching Dustin Diamond yell at one of kids on “Josh & Drake”
– The Josh Hamilton for Edinson Volquez trade will go down as one of the most evenly balanced trades this decade

On a personal note, please let me give everyone a word of advice. Never sign a year lease with two females, they will hate each other within 6-months, the last 6 months will leave you scared of women, annoyed, and without internet.

A Sports & Entertainment blog that focuses on absurdity in sports, snarky banter, updates on Tim Tebow’s virginity, and decent sports gambling advice.

Jay Bruce Is The Next Pete Rose

I haven’t seen any baseball player make such an instant impact on a team in my lifetime. The Cincinnati Reds called up the #1 prospect earlier this week and it makes you wonder why they started out the year with Corey Patterson in centerfield. In Jay Bruce’s first five games, he is 11 for 19 with a hand-full of walks and today had a walk-off homer in extra innings. Bruce was hitting well over .300 in the minors and seemed to use every excuse to not give him a call-up. Dusty Baker doesn’t like to play rookie position players, but looks like Bruce gave the Reds no chance to leave him in the minors. Bruce has excellent plate discipline, above average power, very good speed, and can play good defense in centerfield.

I haven’t seen Cincinnati be this excited about a player since Charlie Hustle was donning a Reds uniform. With the young talent the Reds have, this team could become very dangerous for many years to come. Edinson Volquez, Joey Votto, Johnny Cueto, and Bruce makes up some nice pieces for the future. If the Reds can trade Dunn and Griffey for some blue-chip prospects, this Reds team could make a run at the pennant in the very near future. Let’s hope Dusty Baker doesn’t go all “Wood and Prior” on Volquez and Cueto. They need to make sure they don’t overuse these young arms up and make the Disabled List All-Stars like Kerry Wood and Mark Prior was for a few years.

A Sports & Entertainment blog that focuses on absurdity in sports, snarky banter, updates on Tim Tebow’s virginity, and decent sports gambling advice.