Wednesday, April 23, 2008

And Wayne Krivsky Gets the Boot

The Wayne Krivsky era is over. The Walt Jocketty era begins. And I don't like it.

Nothing against Jocketty, who is a more-than-competent GM, but I liked Krivsky. To me, he's been the best Reds GM since the early-to-middle years of the Jim Bowden regime. (At least Krivsky can take solace in that. Hey honey, thinks that I was the best Reds GM since the early-to-middle years of the Jim Bowden regime)

Anyway, the way I see it, Krivsky's legacy will be remembered for the following moves and non-moves...the good, the bad and the don't know yet:


1. Acquiring Brandon Phillips, Josh Hamilton, Jared Burton and Jeff Keppinger for virtually nothing. Let's break each down individually...

Phillips: 30-30, gold glove-caliber 2nd baseman in his prime. Nice work.

Hamilton: Greatest American baseball player in the history of American baseball players. Possible understatement.

Burton: Has stuff and (I think) mentality to be a lights-out closer.

Keppinger: It took me a while to come around on him, but he looks like the kind of guy who will never endure a prolonged slump. Those guys win batting titles.

2. Trading Wily Mo Pena for Bronson Arroyo. It's not often when you can find an All Star pitcher a month before the season starts, but that's precisely what Krivsky did when he traded Pena (aka Ruben Rivera 2.0) for Arroyo. Say what you want about Arroyo, but he has a 3.83 ERA in his 73 starts for the Reds.

3. His patience with Homer Bailey. Everybody in the universe--including myself--screamed at the top of their lungs when Bailey wasn't called up for the stretch run in '06. Ditto for the start of '07. Turns out we were wrong. Bailey is still a helluva prospect, but we saw last year that he wasn't ready.


1. The Mike Stanton signing and the Rheal Cormier trade. It wasn't just that they were terrible players with nothing left in the tank, it was signing each to a multi-year deal. The Reds are a budget-conscious organization, and these were semi-crippling acquisitions.

2. Not selling high on David Weathers and Scott Hatteberg at the '07 trade deadline. Both Hatteberg and Weathers had one thing in common: neither of them were going to be the reason why the Reds won the 2008 World Series. So, if they had significant value (which they did, especially Weathers), why wouldn't you sell them to the highest bidder? You stockpile talent by moving average players to desperate teams.

3. Drafting Drew Stubbs, a strikeout-prone outfielder (sound familiar) with the 8th pick of the first round, two picks before Tim Lincecum, a Major League-ready pitcher, was snagged by San Francisco.

4. Letting Jorge Cantu (now Florida's starting third basemen) go in December 2007 for no valid reason. I've covered this before, but Cantu, coming off the bench as a righty with pop, would've filled one of the biggest holes on the team. Instead, the end of the bench was filled with Norris Hopper, Ryan Freel, and Juan Castro (aka the luckiest man on the planet).


1. Trading Josh Hamilton for Edinson Volquez. I could write 80 billion words on this. Or I could write none. I'm choosing none because I have a basketball game in thirty minutes.

2. Trading Austin Kearns/Felipe Lopez for Gary Majewski/Bill Bray/Brendan Harris/Royce Clayton/Daryl Thompson. Bill Bray and Daryl Thompson are starting to make this deal look like a steal, but nobody knows just yet. Bray has been pretty lousy in his time in Cincinnati and Thompson, while dominating at the moment, is only doing so at AA Chattanooga. Just saying.

This was fun.

-Brad Spieser (