All Things Bubba

Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Famous Texas alumni

The Beaumont Enterprise has a photo gallery of "famous Texas alumni." Bubba Crosby is among them. Also included: Lance Berkman (Rice), Drew Stubbs (Texas), Chris Snyder and Michael Bourn (University of Houston). Dunno why they left Paul Janish out.

Beaumont is the hometown of Jay Bruce. Bruce was not included in this photo gallery because he never went to college. But his home town paper did feature a gallery about him a couple of years ago. They must have gotten his family to give them some photos, because there are baby pics, Little League pics, etc. Too cute for words. I love that first photo, where he's holding the baby bottle. A lefty from the start!


posted by BubbaFan, 8:51 PM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Standing by Janish

Janish makes the stop

Reds GM Walt Jocketty defended Paul Janish today.
"Everybody has a spot on the club that may not be [getting] all the production they want," Jocketty said. "But we're still getting good defense from those guys. That is as critical as the offense for us, because of our pitching staff and the way we've built our club, defense is extremely important."

The Janish-Renteria combination came into Sunday batting .230 for the season, with zero home runs and 14 errors in the field. At Triple-A Louisville, Cozart was batting .318 with seven homers, 29 RBIs and eight errors entering Sunday.

Despite his six errors as the primary shortstop, Janish generally has an exceptional glove and is probably better defensively than Cozart. Janish came into the day batting .232 in 61 games, with 19 RBIs.

"We're willing to wait for a while," Jocketty said. "We still have faith in Janish. Right now, he's probably putting a lot of pressure on himself. He just needs to relax and play the type of game he's capable of playing."

Dusty Baker is getting a bit annoyed at being asked about it.
It sounds like the Reds will try to turn it around with the current roster. Baker bristled at the mention of a personnel change.

“I’m not going to answer that,” Baker said. “It seems like everyone knows what we need. Let them keep saying that.”

Dusty feels the Reds are really close to turning it around. He could be right. The numbers suggest the Reds have been very unlucky.

And then there's Hal McCoy's Q&A from Saturday.

Q Isn’t it about time that Edgar Renteria strained his hamstring so the Reds could put him on the DL to see if Zach Cozart is the answer at shortstop? — Kyle, Dayton

A Answer at shortstop? What’s the question? Paul Janish is the shortstop (for the most part) and he is in there to save runs, which he does almost daily with his glue glove and whip-lash arm. Just because Cozart is hitting .320 doesn’t mean he’ll hit .320 in the majors. If the Reds bring up everybody hitting .300 at Class AAA Louisville, they’d bring up Cozart, Dave Sappelt, Devin Mesoraco, Jeremy Hermida and Yonder Alonso. Some fans think the Reds should call up the entire Louisville team and send all the Reds to Triple-A.

Janish did make some very nice defensive plays today. He was 0 for 4 at the plate, though.

Hopefully he'll get some hits tomorrow night against the Rays. (If he gets to play.) The Reds will be on national TV - Monday Night Baseball.


posted by BubbaFan, 10:09 PM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bringing Down the Horst

Interesting roster moves made in Cincinnati. Relief pitcher Jeremy Horst was optioned to Louisville today. Not surprising; with Sam LeCure activated, a relief pitcher was going to be sent down.

The timing is a bit odd, however. They made room for LeCure yesterday by optioning Travis Wood to Louisville. He's a starting pitcher who will be replaced by Homer Bailey, who is due to come off the DL. But Bailey is not supposed to pitch until Sunday. I'm kind of surprised they didn't keep Horst around until then.

Perhaps they are going to call up another arm (Aroldis Chapman's rehab period is over). Or another bat. But despite the speculation about Zack Cozart, he started tonight in Louisville. So did all the other likely suspects for a callup, and they all stayed in for the whole game. No one was pulled early.

To add the the intrigue...Chad Reineke was outrighted off the roster yesterday. He was already in Louisville; outrighting got him off the Reds' 40-man roster. He's not a hot prospect or anything, but again, the timing seems odd. The 40-man roster was at 39. There didn't seem to be a need to outright Reineke. The 40-man roster is now at 38.

So...just a little roster housekeeping, or are the Reds preparing to make some kind of move? If so, the signs are pointing to a trade rather than a call up, since the players most likely to be called up are all already on the 40-man.

posted by BubbaFan, 11:28 PM | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Cozart getting his shot?

Reds beat writer John Fay thinks the Reds will call up Zack Cozart from AAA before the Reds travel to Baltimore for their next series. He says it's just a feeling. And he's been laughably wrong in his predictions in the past. But it's the time of year when callups happen, and the Reds shortstops have been struggling.

If Cozart is called up before rosters expand in September, then either Edgar Renteria or Paul Janish will have to be removed from the roster. Janish has options and could be sent down to Louisville, but Fay thinks Renteria will be DFA'd. He's not hitting or fielding as well as Janish, and Janish can play 3B, which Renteria can't.

If Cozart is called up, I don't know if he'd be the starter or the backup. I would guess they'd at least want to try him as a starter. Maybe they'd go with the two-headed shortstop tandem, as they're doing at catcher.

I hope they give Janish just a little more time. He had a truly dreadful May, but seems to be coming out of it. (He was 2 for 4 tonight.) But he's not hitting anything except singles, he's not walking, and weirdly, he's not hitting lefties like he usually does. I suspect he'd return to something near his career norms if given the chance, but the Reds may have run out of patience.


posted by BubbaFan, 10:49 PM | link | 1 comments |

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Learning to walk again had an article a few days ago, about how Paul Janish worked his way out of his slump.

"Originally when I got into the funk, I didn't really feel I was swinging the bat too poorly," Janish said. "Then I started to change some stuff around and became pretty result oriented and it kind of snowballed on me. I got into a funk and I found myself kind of lost at the plate for a period of time. Ten or 15 at-bats turned into 40-50."

Janish's strong glove kept his name in the lineup, and at the plate, he's been able to raise his overall batting average 30 points the past two weeks, but he's still batting only .233 with 18 RBIs. Neither Janish nor backup shortstop Edgar Renteria has a home run this season.

The adjustments have been more mental than physical. Janish, playing regularly for the first time in the Majors this season, let himself relax.

"I had put too much pressure on myself," he said. "I finally said, 'We've got nowhere else to go.' I'm finally starting to get some hits again and inch my way back up. Unfortunately, I kind of dug myself a little bit of a hole there. I do feel like I'm coming out of it though."

Might be too soon to say he's out his slump. He's hitting much better, but his numbers still aren't great. I can't help wondering how much rope the Reds are going to give him.

Today, GM Walt Jocketty was asked if Cozart's hot hitting down in AAA would force a move. He said no, the Reds are happy with what they have. (But then, what else is he going to say?)

And then, Janish was pinch-hit for in tonight's game. He was 1 for 2, but they still pinch-hit for him in the 7th inning. Probably because he popped out in a similar situation yesterday.

Power is reportedly down across the league this year, so perhaps expecting the return of Janish the Doubles Machine is unrealistic. I do wish he would walk more, though. He's had a good walk rate throughout his career (over 10%). This year, the walks have disappeared. He's down to around 3%. Returning to his career norm for walks would go a long way to fixing what's wrong with his hitting.


posted by BubbaFan, 11:38 PM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cingrani signed

The Reds announced Monday that they signed their third round pick, Tony Cingrani.

And it looks like Paul Janish has emerged from his slump. (Knock on wood.) After a horrible May, he's put up decent numbers for June so far. (And none too soon, with Zack Cozart raking in AAA.)

With the Yankees putting Jeter on the DL today, it looks like the Reds will have the better shortstop when they meet at Great American Ball Park next week.

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posted by BubbaFan, 8:21 PM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, June 09, 2011


Couple of milestones yesterday, one good, one not.

Paul Janish hit the first triple of his major league career. Tony Campana dived for a hit into the gap and missed. Yes, the same Tony Campana that Janish gunned down in his most recent Webgem. Looks like Janish is young Campana's nemesis!

Meanwhile, with the Yanks, Lance Pendleton gave up his first home run. Actually, he gave up two.

The Yankees have lost the first two games of this series to the Red Sox. If they lose tonight, too, it's gonna be ugly.

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posted by BubbaFan, 5:12 PM | link | 0 comments |

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Day 2 of the Draft

So, I was on the Syracuse Chiefs web site, seeing if the game is on for tonight. (I'm thinking of going, but the weather is looking scary.) I found this article, interviewing Anthony Rendon.

It was quite a surprise that he fell as far as he did in the draft; the general consensus is that his medical reports must have been bad. But if the shoulder's okay, the Nats got a steal. The top pick, without having the top pick.

And in the third round, the Reds picked Tony Cingrani, lefty reliever from Rice.

posted by BubbaFan, 3:55 PM | link | 0 comments |

Paulie Webgems

Paul Janish flashed the leather in tonight's game against the Cubs, making a sliding stop and throwing out the insanely speedy Tony Campana.

This play ended up the day's #4 Webgem, as well as #7 on SportsCenter's Top 10 Plays of the Day. It's the second time Janish has gotten a Webgem this season.


posted by BubbaFan, 12:13 AM | link | 0 comments |

Monday, June 06, 2011

Draft Day

With the Reds hovering at .500, many Cincinnati fans are panicking. As Paul Daugherty notes, "The impulse to Do Something in baseball is almost always wrong" - but at times like this, people can't resist demanding that the front office do something, anything.

The problem is obvious: pitching. Particularly starting pitching. But without any realistic way to address that need, there's talk of calling up position players from AAA - in particular, shortstop Zack Cozart, who is on a tear in Louisville. Paul Janish has been hitting better lately - 3 for 5 yesterday, and .333 for the past 7 days. He still doesn't hit for much power, though, and Cozart does offer a bit more pop.

Of course, Cozart hasn't done anything on the big league level. It's possible he would struggle to adjust. Heck, it's likely. And if that does happen, those calling for him now would be calling for him to be sent back to Louisville. Hopefully, Walt Jocketty has a little more patience than the fans and media do.

Hal McCoy has a nice article about how Janish's defense has earned him the starting job. Given the terrible pitching, good defense up the middle is even more important - a way to improve your pitching when you can't improve the pitchers.

Also, today is draft day. Earlier this year, many expected Rice standout Anthony Rendon to be taken with the first pick. The Pirates have reportedly decided on Gerrit Cole instead. There are rumors (which may or may not be true) that Seattle is passing on Rendon, too, because of concern over his shoulder. He is still expected to go somewhere in the first round, however.

UPDATE: Mark Sheldon says Dusty Baker has ruled out any callups for hitters. Baker says the problem is pitching, not hitting, and that the gap between AAA and MLB is wider than ever. Sheldon does hint that the Reds may be quietly pursuing a starting pitcher. (They tried and failed to get Cliff Lee last year.)

And the Mariners passed on Anthony Rendon. Rumor had it that his shoulder got a "yellow light" from team doctors - not green, not red, but yellow. However, he was taken by the Nationals with the sixth pick. Maybe I'll get to see him when he reaches AAA and plays in Syracuse.


posted by BubbaFan, 5:46 PM | link | 0 comments |

Friday, June 03, 2011

The Yankees Magazine article

I've been on the road lately the last few weeks, but I came home today to find a Priority Mail envelope waiting for me. Could it be? Yes! Finally! The April 2011 issue of Yankees Magazine I've been pursuing for weeks. The one with the Bubba Crosby article.

Holy cow, it's awesome. I was expecting a relatively short article. I was hoping for a pic, but not counting on it. But yay, it's a pretty long article, with a boatload of really nice photos. Including one of Bubba with his dog and his wife. (Sorry, ladies - it appears he's married now.)

All in all, a very nice piece. I wish he got this much ink in his playing days.

Yankees Magazine is not what I expected. I thought it would be a typical sports magazine. You know, soaked in testosterone. Either that, or aimed at kids. But this publication seems to be aimed at a wider audience, including females. There's a really long article on a Yankees fantasy camp for women. (I'd love to do that some day. I'd suck, but I'd love to do it.) And even a recipe. A salad recipe, no less.

Anyways, the Bubba Crosby article is here. I'll have more comments on it later, but it's way past my bedtime, and I gotta be at work early tomorrow.


posted by BubbaFan, 12:58 AM | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Janish's leash getting shorter

Fangraph's "NotGraphs" section featured a photo of Edgar Renteria today, with the title "Veteran Presence Caught On Film." Yup, it's of his error. (Pretty good photo, I must say - speaking as someone who spends more time than I should photographing baseball games. The photographer really caught the moment.)

Renteria started last night, and that error opened the floodgates to a 4-run inning for the Brewers. But Paul Janish didn't exactly help his case, when he was double-switched in in the 7th. He went 0 for 2...and collected an error himself. And not one I can remember seeing before. He just stood there and let the ball go through his legs. Usually when that happens, the ball's moving so fast the fielder doesn't have time to react, and so doesn't get an error. But Janish could have gotten it, and so got an error. Bizarre.

I'm not sure what happened there. Daydreaming? ADHD, like Nick Green? Petite mal epilepsy seizure? Or just out too late celebrating his wife's birthday the night before? (Um...I'm not stalking them, I swear. I just happened to notice that Monday was Mrs. Janish's birthday when I linked to her player page yesterday. ...I sound like a stalker, don't I?)

Mike Leake, the Reds' groundball pitcher, is on the mound tonight. And Janish is not in the lineup. This is the first time he's been out of the starting lineup two days in a row when he wasn't injured. I fear his leash may be getting short. He's been kind of lucky; Renteria hasn't played well, and down in AAA, Zack Cozart was terrible at the beginning of the season. Cozart started hitting well, but then ended up on the DL with a sprained ankle. So there hasn't been any serious alternative to Janish. But some are already calling for him to be replaced.

Christina Kahrl thinks the Reds should call up Cozart and trade Janish to the Twins (with a boatload of other players) for Liriano. (I like Zack Cozart just fine, but it mystifies me why people think he'd be an improvement on Janish. His minor league OPS is almost identical to Janish's. Janish has more patience, Cozart a bit more power. Both play good defense; Cozart has a little more speed, Janish has a much stronger arm. Cozart does have a better pedigree, drafted in the second round, vs. the fifth for Janish. Maybe it's just "second string quarterback" syndrome. As in the second string quarterback is the most popular guy in town when the team is struggling. With baseball...the farther the guy is from the big leagues, the better he looks.

Rob Neyer has a more realistic view:

The Reds trail only the Cardinals in scoring, despite Paul Janish's terrible hitting stats. And Janish is a fine defensive shortstop, which makes it more difficult to justify a change there.

He and Kahrl agree that the Reds need a good starting pitcher. But they're not exactly thick on the ground, and sure won't be cheap. There's a reason why even Brian Cashman wanted to grow his own.


posted by BubbaFan, 6:11 PM | link | 0 comments |