All Things Bubba

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

Monday, April 25, 2011

Humber faces the Yankees

Phil Humber, after being DFA'd by both the Royals and the A's in the off-season, was called up the White Sox and is doing okay. He takes the mound in Yankee Stadium tonight.

And there's this article, about Paul Janish:

Overshadowed Janish quietly seizing shot with Reds

It's from April 12, but has some interesting stuff. In particular, Dusty Baker got Rich Aurilia to serve as a mentor for Janish.

Among the things that helped Janish maintain confidence and perspective during the summer -- and among the examples of why Baker is so skilled at handling players -- was the fact that the manager recruited one of his former players, Rich Aurilia, to essentially act as a psychological tutor.

When Aurilia was a pup coming up in San Francisco, same thing had happened to him with Royce Clayton, Shawon Dunston and Jose Vizcaino.

"Richie had to do it three times," Baker says of his former shortstop having the rug pulled out from under him as a young player. "Paulie had to do it once.

"At least this time I had a little more input than last time with Rich."

Meaning, as an established manager now, Baker is allowed more input by general manager Walt Jocketty than he was back in the early days in San Francisco by then-GM Bob Quinn.

The conversations with Aurilia meant a lot to Janish.

"I didn't know Rich well, but he's an awesome guy," Janish says. "And Dusty getting me in touch with him showed me a lot about what Dusty thought of me long-term, too."

Janish hopes to be the long-term answer at shortstop.

"I'm not looking just to interview in the first half of the season," Janish says. "I'm looking to be the shortstop here for a long time."

The Reds could do worse than Janish. Yes, he's a light hitter, but most shortstops are, these days. For awhile it looked like Zack Cozart, who has a bit more power than Janish, if less patience, might be the shortstop of the future for the Reds. But he's repeating AAA this year, and is not doing well. There's plenty of talent in the Reds farm system, but no one near ready for the show yet.

I would like to see Janish hit for a little more power, and walk a little more. During spring training and during the regular season so far, he's put up a good batting average, but it's all singles. He's had a good eye at the plate all his career, so it's weird that he's walked so little. Especially since he's hitting in front of the pitcher. And I don't expect him to be a power hitter, but he's shown occasional pop over his career, both in the minors and last year in the big leagues. He's the only Reds starter who hasn't hit a single home run yet this season. He hit three or four of them the month he started last season.

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posted by BubbaFan, 5:17 PM


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