...Because Paul Janish is going down. Sigh.
He had a really good spring, but I was expecting this. He just didn't fit in the roster. The Reds traded Juan Francisco and are going with only 11 pitchers for now, but there still wasn't room for Janish.
Todd Frazier plays 3B - necessary with geriatric Scott Rolen as the starter, and Francisco now a Brave. He also has decent power, hitting more home runs than any other player in spring training. Wilson Valdez plays SS and is out of options. Willie Harris is a lefty batter and plays CF. Janish's skills are very similar to Valdez's (though Janish's defense is better), and Janish has options.
John Fay reports that it was a tough decision:
Janish hit around .300 this spring and showed good pop.
“It’s real tough,” Baker said. “There’s always going to be someone who had a good camp. This is why I despise this week more than any week in the whole year. You want guys to have a good camp.
“There’s a good chance he could be back at some point. There’s a great chance of that.”
...“It was a very hard decision,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “Paul’s part of the family. He still is.”
I do think Janish will likely be recalled eventually. That's kind of the point of having players with options: you can send them down and call them up as needed. I also suspect Frazier will be sent down when the Reds need another pitcher. Dusty says they'll need another pitcher after the off day. Which is the day after opening day. So if Janish had made the roster, it would likely be for a very short time.
Janish didn't play today. He was listed on the travel roster, and several minor leaguers played, but I guess Dusty decided he deserved a day off.
Janish finished off spring training on a strong note. He was 1 for 3 with a double, a walk, 2 RBIs and a run scored yesterday. Saturday, he was 1 for 3 with a RBI and a run scored. His final line:
AVG OBP SLG OPS
.310 .412 .500 .912
He had six extra base hits - 5 doubles and 1 home run - and 8 walks. Much better than the 1 double and 2 walks he had last spring.
He's also been great on defense. The White Sox announcers yesterday were very impressed with his range and his cannon of an arm.
Doug Flynn, one of the Reds announcers, says he thinks the Reds probably tried to trade Janish because they have so much respect for him - they thought he deserved to be on a big league roster somewhere. (I'm not so sure about that - while I'm sure they listened to offers, they need him as depth.)
And I really wonder if the Reds are working on another trade. It really makes no sense that they are going through contortions to carry an extra position player for just one day. Unless it's someone they are trying to trade, who doesn't have options.
The Louisville Bats make a couple of swings through the northeast in May/June. If Janish is still with them, I'll be there to
watch him play. But I wouldn't be surprised if he was called up before then.
Labels: Paul Janish