Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Dave Roberts: May Need Surgery

Well, at least we have an explanation for his poor performance in the season thus far. Apparently he has either bone spurs or bone chips or both in his left elbow and it has been causing pain plus restricting his motion, hence his poor performance thus far. Too bad it kicked up right when the season started, he was pretty hot in spring, hitting .302/.422/.434/.856.

Assuming he gets arthroscopic surgery for this (similar to what Bonds had done after the season last year), it will take a minimum of 4 weeks recovery time, from what I'm gathering from the AP article. He's flying down to LA today while the team is flying to their next series in Colorado, to be examined by Dr. Yokum, who operated on his shoulder when he was at UCLA.

Obviously he cannot play with it and he can't take medicine to help with it all season either, so I assume he's going to get the operation done now so that he's back sometime mid-to-late June, when there's still over half the season to play still. The team would probably be better off with him doing that now because offensively he's been killing us up top and still we are around .500 for the most part - if we can get better production from that position and from leadoff, where Winn will probably bat while Roberts is out, then the offense will be that much better.

I had forgotten until now that Roberts has a reputation for being a bit brittle and DL prone, so it figures he's going on it around his first month with us. Hopefully this will fix him right up plus he will be fresher from resting for a month and be a great catalyst for us up top of the lineup for the rest of the season.

Niekro Passes Waivers

Also thought I would note that Niekro passed through waivers unclaimed and he was assigned to AAA Fresno. He said he wouldn't pout and would work hard to get back up to the majors if he was unclaimed. It is not too surprising he passed through waivers, not much need today for a right-handed platoon 1B who can be neutralized in a pinch-hitting situation with a righty reliever.


  1. Kudos, Martin. Yes, your method is much superior to mine and does really get to the point and allows one to compare the actual 1bmen around the league.
    The way this team is constructed, tho, do you really see a trade for a corner IF? We give up a strength (of course, always part of a trade), but then create a larger log jam on the position side of the roster. In otherwords, for a trade to work, we'd have to include Klesko or Feliz or give them away for virtually nothing via DFA, don't you think? And, if this logic is correct, who will take them as part of the trade? I mean, including one of them, I think, significantly reduces the liklihood of completing a trade. A team that trades, say a 3b for pitching, say, likly has a surplus of corner IFs and already has someone earmarked for 3b. Thus they will give up their current starter to acquire pitching help - but they certainly don't want the contract and roster complications occassioned by accepting Feliz as part of the trade.
    A more interesting question, though, is how much improvement can really be expected via trade? I don't think we have the b udget or gtrade chips to get a top 20% performer (at 3b or 1b). Aren't we more likely to be able to score, say, a 30 percentile guy? And since we already have a 50 or 60 percentile guy, how much O does that really give us? AND, is that slight gain worth Lowry + Sanchez (which is what I think it will take).

  2. Dang Microsoft, auto-restarted my comments to oblivion!

    No kudos necessary, but thanks.

    But kudos to you, very good points about the complications of trying to do a trade. I wasn't trying to say it would be easy or uncomplicated. I agree with all your points made.

    I mainly wanted the Giants to keep their options open and be receptive to talks for high potential corner infielders. Like someone who is not necessarily ready to come up now, but look ready by the end of the season or next season at the latest, like Evan Longoria (only as example, he's probably too rich for us) or like how San Diego got Kouzmanoff. While I would like to win this season, if we can get a high quality hitter this season that would fill 1B/3B next season for us, then we should consider it.

    For example, Tampa Bay has a buttload of players capable of playing 3B: Cantu, Iwamura, Upton, plus Longoria. I think Lowry is too much for Cantu, but maybe a package of minor league pitchers. The main problem is that Cantu is not that great a 3B and is more a 2B. ChiSox has Crede and Fields, maybe they can pry Crede off their hands, he's good defensively and has power to spare. The main problem is that Crede is already 29 years old and hits like a slightly better Feliz until last year's outburst of 30 HR plus is doing terrible right now. If he's still scuffling into June, we might be able to get him for some minor leaguers package.

  3. But Crede is not a long-term solution, I was mainly throwing his name out as an upgrade on Feliz, then he could be a uber-utility guy again, which is what he was when he was most successful as a hitter (relatively).

  4. It's a shame about Niekro, I was trying to tout him before the season as a occasional PH, oh well! He's headed back to Fresno and who knows when we'll see him again.

    Crede is interesting but his back troubles are a little concerning. And with Boras as his agent he would definitely be a rental. I also believe he's only on a 1 year contract right now with the Sox.

  5. Didn't know about his back or Boras, yeah, those are troubling elements. He is under control only to 2008, so you are right, basically 1 year. I was assuming he had a reasonable agent, but, yeah, cross him off the list. Thanks for the info!

  6. Here is a interesting trade scenario, just read this from Rotoworld.

    Reds optioned third baseman Edwin Encarnacion to Triple-A Louisville.

    And the Reds wonder why they're consistently a second-division team. Encarnacion is one of the team's best players, and the club is going to need him to bounce back if it has any chance of contending. Instead, it looks like he might be on the Austin Kearns path out of town. There should be several teams looking to find out just how much bullpen help it would take to acquire the 24-year-old.

    Edwin Encarnacion is only 24 and is full of promise. In 2006 he hit (.276/.359/.473) as a 23 year old in 406 ABs. He also had 33 2B's and 15 HRs. His splits are slanted from 2006 because of his home park but I like him as a young player.

    PECOTA, which will take his home park into account, projected him in 2007 to put up a line of (.275/.347/.476) w/ 20 HRs. His 60th and 75th percentile's are good looking too.

    He's someone I wouldn't mind the Giants taking a look at. Maybe a package of Sanchez and another pitching prospect could get him? The Reds seem to be a little frustrated with him and might be open to moving him. They're always looking for pitching and it's the one thing the Giants have.

    Just thinking out loud here, what do you think?

  7. Exactly what the doctor ordered Chris, thanks for the headsup!

    EE is exactly what I'm talking about, a strong 3B prospect, full of promise as you noted, and if the Reds are sending him down, that puts his price tag down below a Lowry, perhaps even less than a Sanchez, like a Pereira plus bullpen prospects, like Munter or maybe they'll even take older guys like Geise or Kinney.

  8. I went over to the Red Reporter, a pretty good Reds blog to see what they were saying about EE getting sent to AAA.

    Theres the thread, it's semi-interesting in that most think that EE is going to be available now. Apparently Narron doesn't much like EE, that's the impression I got anyways from reading the comments. I do know that Narron benched EE once this season for not running out a pop-out.

    Wayne Krivsky has made some odd trades since he came to Cincinnati (Lopez+Kearns for mediocre bullpen help) and hopefully he is still over valuing bullpen help.

    Get on it Sabes!

  9. I think it's more likely that the Reds are sending Encarnacion down to give him a wake-up call rather than giving up on him. There's no way any team would give up on a player with his potential at his age.

    ...and by the way, If we could get him for Lowry, I'd jump on that in a minute.

  10. Given how long they kept Kearns before trading him, I would tend to agree. Plus, Boof, as you note, he has a lot of potential and is still young.

    While the Reds fans may think one thing, its the GM who decides what happens. Then again, Kvitsky is new to the job and was the one who finally cut the strings with Kearns.

    I wouldn't term the guys he got mediocre bullpen help, Chris, but they certainly have not been as good as they were before. They looked pretty good to me when the trade happened - not good enough to warrant both Kearns and Lopez AND Wagner (and was there another prospect?) but still pretty good. I could have seen trading one of them for the two relievers, but that was too steep a price.

    Then again, I don't know what Kearns and Lopez's contract situation was, maybe they are going into arbitration with a big raise or go free agent after this season maybe. Those factors could dip the trade to look better from the Reds viewpoint. But even with that, I don't see any way to justify the trade, it was just too much, two regular starters plus a promising closer potential pitcher for two relievers, albeit good relievers.

    I wouldn't trade Lowry for EE, but I think I would be OK with trading Jon Sanchez for him in a one for one. If we give up Lowry, I would want another position prospect from the Reds, like a Milton Loo, who has promise but some issues. Lowry is a proven pitcher, to me, whereas obviously EE has issues that the Reds are trying to get him to get over.



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