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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Wayne and Bob's Press Conference

I just finished watching the Reds' press conference on Jerry Narron's departure. I usually avoid trying to read too much into what is said at these meetings, much less the body language of the actors, but emotions were so high that I can't help but have a few impressions:
  1. Everyone loved Jerry, even if he wasn't doing a good enough job.
  2. Wayne Krivsky seemed tired and stressed. Not so much so that he was exhausted, but certainly enough to be a bit overly emotional. It was also interesting to count how many times he said the words "as long as I'm here." He's definitely feeling the heat.
  3. Bob Castellini looked pissed. He did not seem particularly warm towards Wayne, or even all that collegial.
Bob's quip about firing himself, and his statement about how involved he planned to be in the hiring process for the new manager, might indicate that he's stepping in on Wayne's authority a bit more than he has in the past. That could be a good thing, as it could ensure that dissenting views have a chance to be expressed. But it could also paralyze Wayne's ability to do anything over the coming weeks, and this is a critical time for the team.

Bob's statement that they intend to put a contending team on the field for the remainder of this season is also a bit troubling, because it might indicate that the Reds aren't following the path that they should be at this point in the season. This season is lost, and the Reds should spend the rest of the season, including especially this month's trading flurry, doing whatever they can to get a core of talent ready for the coming two seasons.

That does not mean some sort of long-term rebuilding plan that will doom the Reds to mediocrity for years to come (those 5-year plans don't have a great track record of success). But it does mean trading away (for good return) players that are peaking in value right now and are unlikely to help us two years down the line (Griffey, Hatteberg, Weathers, etc) and investing, both in terms of money and playing time, in those that might be able to help the team the next few years--even if it means growing pains this year. Let's hope that statement by Bob was more one for PR than an actual statement of executive direction.


I spent the last hour or so working on the month of June report, but motivation is not exactly in high gear given how bad it was. I think that, like I did for May, I'm going to forgo the sort of in-depth analysis I've done in the past and stick to some basic reporting. More should be ready by tomorrow. But for now, I'm going to go live in fantasyland, where my team is tied for first and entering a five-game series with the co-leader of its division. It's a lot more fun than reality.