Publish date:

5 REDS

Author:

OVERALL RANK 14

ENEMY LINES

A RIVAL SCOUT SIZES UP CINCINNATI

Their starting pitching is really going to be a problem.... I'm concerned whether Brandon Finnegan can throw enough strikes. But he's got a very good breaking ball and enough velocity on his fastball. I think he's legitimate.... Robert Stephenson hasn't made the progress I thought he would. He doesn't have great deception, though he does have decent velocity. Again, it's a matter of throwing strikes.... Raisel Iglesias should be a star. His velocity kicks up a lot when he's in relief.... It's a shame Devin Mesoraco can't stay on the field, because he has the tools to be an All-Star. He's a 30 home-run guy, especially in their park.... Joey Votto's an outstanding hitter. He doesn't strike out, he uses the whole field, he commands the strike zone, and he never chases bad balls. I'm sure they'd like to get rid of his salary, but he's their only real threat.... José Peraza has absolutely no power. You worry that it will be hard for him to reach base consistently. But he's able to steal some bases.... Zack Cozart doesn't wow you with his tools, but he gets hits when you need them. When the ball is hit to him, it's an out. He's a solid, steadying, winning player.... Last year was the first time Adam Duvall got to play every day, and it paid off. He's got a short powerful swing, and he's quick to the ball.... It gets overlooked, but Billy Hamilton can really field. He gets good, accurate jumps, and he's fearless against the fence. If he gets on base around 33% of the time, he could steal 100 bases. His next step is to cut down on the swings and misses.

MANAGER BRYAN PRICE

4TH SEASON WITH CINCINNATI

B-T BA OBP SLG WAR

CF BILLY HAMILTON [DEFENSIVE STAR] [BARGAIN]

S-R .260 .321 .343 2.8

2B JOSÉ PERAZA

R-R .324 .352 .411 -0.1

1B JOEY VOTTO [TEAM MVP]

L-R .326 .434 .550 4.0

LF ADAM DUVALL [BARGAIN] [RISING]

R-R .241 .297 .498 3.2

RF SCOTT SCHEBLER

L-R .265 .330 .432 0.5

SS ZACK COZART

R-R .252 .308 .425 2.0

3B EUGENIO SUAREZ

R-R .248 .317 .411 1.5

C DEVIN MESORACO [INJURY RISK]

R-R .273 .359 .534 4.8 [2014 STATS]

BENCH

B-T BA OBP SLG WAR

C TUCKER BARNHART

S-R .257 .323 .379 0.7

UT ARISMENDY ALCÁNTARA [NEW ACQUISITION] [DEFENSIVE STAR]

S-R .205 .254 .367 0.6 [2014 STATS]

OF RYAN RABURN [NEW ACQUISITION]

R-R .220 .309 .404 -0.6

W--L ERA K/9 WAR

LH BRANDON FINNEGAN [RISING]

10--11 3.98 7.6 2.3

RH ROBERT STEPHENSON [ROOKIE]

8--9 4.41 7.5 - [2015 STATS]

RH SCOTT FELDMAN [NEW ACQUISITION] [DECLINING]

5--5 3.90 5.1 1.4 [MINOR LEAGUE STATS]

LH CODY REED

6--4 3.08 8.0 - [2015 STATS]

RH TIM ADLEMAN

4--4 4.00 6.1 1.3

SV ERA K/9 WAR

RH RAISEL IGLESIAS [BARGAIN] [RISING]

6 2.53 9.5 2.7

RH DREW STOREN [NEW ACQUISITION] [DECLINING]

3 5.23 8.4 -0.3

NEW ACQUISITION

2016 STATS

†2015 STATS

(R) ROOKIE

*2014 STATS

**MINOR LEAGUE STATS

TEAM MVP

DEFENSIVE STAR

INJURY RISK

BARGAIN

RISING

DECLINING

MODEST PROPOSAL

Two of the best relievers in Bryan Price's bullpen were starters as recently as 2014, in Tony Cingrani's case, and '16 for Raisel Iglesias. Price should leverage their endurance to manage his bullpen—one of the worst ever in 2016. Instead of forcing the two into the modern one-inning-at-a-time model, let them work multiple frames per outing, if perhaps less often. Iglesias was used this way for a while last season, averaging 12/3 innings per appearance, to great success, but Cincinnati could go even further. Getting more from its best relievers is one way to squeeze value from a thin staff.

BOTTOM LINE

With a weak rotation and little protection for Joey Votto, another last-place finish lies ahead.