Sunday, December 18, 2011

Why Walt Jocketty is Too Old to be a GM in MLB

Sometimes in life, you've got to look at yourself in the mirror and say "Is this really what I want to do?" After the public reaction of yesterday's Padres and Reds trade, I'm guessing  Reds GM Walt Jocketty may have done some soul-searching and had a deep, meaningful conversation with his thoughts.

Why? Although Cincinnati just acquired a 24 year old pitcher(Mat Latos) who is under Reds control for 4 more years for 4 players, I am in full belief that the price that they paid for Latos was vastly worth more than what value he'll bring to the Reds as their #1 SP. They overpaid to a degree that I almost would consider a full-blown robbery or fleecing. While time may be a factor  in regards to 1 or 2 of the pieces of the trade making any name for themselves at the MLB, the trade could be a fleecing before year's end from just 2 players alone. If the Padres had a plan in action to make a trade after this one is official, the Reds/Padres trade may have been an even bigger "win" for the Padres.

After conversations with some Reds fans and a few sportswriters, it is very very likely that the Rays may have asked for a far bigger trade package(in terms of immediate value to the Rays) without as many players involved. It is my inclination that the Rays likely asked for Yonder Alonso(who was involved in Padres trade), Devin Meseroco and possibly Brad Boxberger(also in Padres deal) as a throw-in. While Grandal has more power potential than Devin, Devin's glove and proximity to the majors were part of the reason why the Rays would like him over Grandal. Brad Boxberger likely would be a part of the Rays bullpen in 2012, which would have given Rays 3 players all likely to play a role in 2012 with the Reds getting just 1 at a somewhat high price(salary-wise, Shields is set to make ~13 MIL in 2012 and close to 16 MIL in 2013). Walt Jocketty basically stated at Winter Meetings that the Rays' asking price for Shields was way higher than he wanted to give up.

Fair enough, Walt, but then you turn around and do this.....You should really re-evaluate your career right now. I don't know Mr. Jocketty personally and I have never seen him working in the front office, however I am in full belief that the Reds scouting department and front office relies on "old-school" ways and approaches. Add the fact that Joe Morgan is/was a consultant to the team and quotes from Dusty Baker, there is not many sabermetric methods or ideas used by the Reds. True, they got a SP during his best years and have him through 2 yrs of his 5 "peak" years, but there's GLARING questions facing the Reds' scouting department.

The Reds play their home games in "The Great American Ballpark" which has been coinfully nicknamed "The Great American Small-park" for it's propensity to give up HRs and boost hitters' HR #s and avgs. and is the 2nd most hitter-friendly ballpark in the NL(#1 being Colorado's Coors Field). The Padres play in Petco Park, which has a propensity to be the most pitcher-friendly park in all of baseball and pitchers' stats are greatly effected due to fact that a flyball is more likely to drop for an out/single/double than it is to fall into the seats for a HR. So these 2 teams are basically on opposite ends of the spectrum in regards to team-building.One prefers hitting-first and relies on trading excess hitting to get pitchers, while the other does the opposite.

I realize that a free agent pitcher is not attracted to pitching in an extreme hitter's environment and the other way the Reds procure pitchers is through trades, but acquiring a flawed product for that much is questionable and I believe will quickly bite the Reds in the butt.

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