Lest Trout not be the only one on this blog talking about baseball, I'm back with some more Reds coverage. I really made an effort to dig in to the financials of the club way back before the winter meetings, and then everything went apeshit and I was left in a state of shock. I thought the Reds might have $10 million or so this year to spend on one or multiple players. Maybe I thought that much money can get one stud free agent. But alas, in today's market that doesn't even get you Gil Meche. What a world we now live in.
With a second long-time member of the Reds front office leaving after being unable to work amicably with GM Wayne Krivsky, you'd think they would need to settle some of the grumbling. Unfortunately all that's left now is the leftovers. That's right; the cold, fatty pieces. Let's take a look at a few free agents the Reds could potentially go after. And by "go after" I mean "take when nobody else wants them."
Barry Zito - Hahahahaha.... just for fun: not only can they not afford him, he would hate the small ballpark and the conservative city. It's hard to date celebrities in the 'Nati.
Jeff Suppan - Well, if the rumors are to be believed, Suppan being wooed by both the Brewers and Pirates (among others) meaning his price tag can't possibly be that high. Suppan is no ace, and do I really want to see the Reds give him $8-9 million/year? Probably not, but It wold really warm my heart to see them actually in the discussion. This seems like the type of player right in their wheelhouse. A veteran who will pitch his share of innings and hasn't shown any signs of being injury prone. At least test the waters.
Jeff Weaver - Ugh. Did you know that Jeff Weaver made over $8 million last year? Don't forget that he was DFA at the end of June. This seems like a move the Reds would make. They seem to have a long history of taking mediocre to bad players from other teams and believing they can "fix" them. Raise your hand if you think a 30 year old Weaver is fixable. Plus, he looks like that guy who hits on your girlfriend even though he knows you're standing right there. Pass.
Preson Wilson - He's done enough to utterly confound me in fantasy leagues that he might as well do the same to my real life favorite team. Somehow, he's only 32 years old (I could have sworn he was at least 35). They need a right handed bat somewhere on the team, and he could platoon. Now, he does play left field where Adam Dunn is going nowhere (particularly when the sun is in his eyes), but I'm sure he could play right some and left when Dunner needs a day off. Plus, I'd say you could get him at a greatly slashed price than his $4 million from last year.
Dan Kolb - Wait, didn't he used to be "Danny"? Or did I just imagine that? I realize it's not 2004, but he did just have 39 saves two years ago. And, he's only 31. For a team that's about to hand the closer role to 37 year old David Weathers "Makes My Bad Knee Act Up" and 40 year old Mike "Get Off My Lawn, You Damn Kids" Stanton, early thirties is sounding pretty good right about now. I like the idea of this one.
Aubrey Huff - He hit .267 last year with 21 dingers. Uninspiring, but not terrible. His upside is that he can play third, first and in the outfield. His downside is that he would be another lefthanded bat and he made a ridiculous amount of money last year ($7m). The sad thing here is that I would probably be very excited and send out some emails with the subject line "Aubrey Huff! Hell Yeah!" if we got him, and not even sarcastically. What an offseason.
Jerome Williams, Mike Wood, Chris Reitsma - Some occasionally shaky but cheapish bullpen help that isn't over the hill might be nice to get. Reitsma would be welcomed back by fans who remember trading him but can't remember who Jim Bowden got in return (aka me). Side note: how come nobody mentioned the fact that Washington neglected to trade Soriano last year for prospects? Now he's gone and you've got nothing to show for it. Way to do dickweed. Sorry for the name calling but Old Leatherpants always gets to me.
Alex Gomez, Damon Hollins, Aaron Boone - Similarly some reasonably priced bats that could fill spots on the bench and start occasionally. I think Boone would be welcomed back as well. His pappy was a crummy manager, but nobody held that against him. Plus, when healthy, he was about as solid as it got with the glove. Can you say "late inning replacement," Edwin?
I don't know what else to say except that things are a little bleak. Luckily the Enquirer online had this picture of Reds' owner Bob Castellini today and I realized why I liked it so much. He looks exactly how Santa would look if you shaved him! He won't bring you Barry Zito, but he might get you that new bike. Enjoy!