All Things Bubba

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

Monday, February 01, 2010

Reds still dealing

The Reds acquired yet another shortstop today. They sent Adam Rosales and Willy Taveras to Oakland, in exchange for Aaron Miles and a PTBNL. This deal seemed more about each team getting rid of a liability than anything. It's hard to say who's happier: A's fans celebrating Miles' departure, or Reds fans celebrating Taveras'.

Adam Rosales was a rather polarizing player in Cincinnati. Some fans loved his scrappiness, calling him "Pete" Rosales. Others thought he was a liability on offense and defense. The A's supposedly wanted a cheap reserve guy who can play SS. I can only assume they've never seen Rosales play SS. He's also not that cheap, since they had to take the $4 million dollar man, Taveras, with him. (They've already DFA'd him.)

This means Janish has gone from the starting SS to fighting for a reserve infielder spot, against Miles, Drew Sutton, Miguel Cairo, etc.

Although Cabrera is a two-time Gold Glove winner -- with the Expos in 2001 and the Angels in '07 -- Janish is considered the stronger option defensively. He has more range and, after the Gonzalez trade to Boston in '09, led all Major League shortstops with a .995 fielding percentage.

However, Janish is a .205 career hitter in 128 big league games over the past two seasons. The 27-year-old did show improvement at the plate down the stretch last season, and hit 21 doubles in 256 at-bats overall.

Baker and second baseman Brandon Phillips both voiced approval last weekend for entering the 2010 season with Janish as the shortstop. Janish would have also been significantly cheaper for the budget-minded Reds. He is likely to make something near the $400,000 league minimum this year.

In the end, the Reds believed that Cabrera's track record as a hitter couldn't be ignored -- especially for a club that finished 15th out of 16 National League teams in hitting and 11th in runs scored.

"In our case, it means a lot," Jocketty said. "One area we felt we still had to improve was our offense. Obviously Paul is an excellent defensive shortstop, we were going to give him every opportunity to see him play on an everyday basis. But when this deal came to us where we could afford it, we felt we had to go forward."

I think Janish is very likely to get a roster spot, but how much playing time he'll get is another story. Supposedly, Jocketty has spoken to Dusty Baker and told him to make sure Janish gets a lot of playing time, so he can continue to develop. But Dusty hasn't been very good at giving his bench players at-bats in the past, and I don't see him starting now - not with durable workhorses like Orlando Cabrera at SS and Brandon Phillips at 2B. I suppose there might be some work available at 3B; Rolen is notoriously injury-prone. But I fear Janish will be buried on the bench as he was last year.

In other hot stove news, the Dodgers are interested in Chien-Ming Wang. (Torre does like to collect former Yankees, especially pitchers.) However, they don't think he'll be ready to play for another three months.


posted by BubbaFan, 8:48 PM


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