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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Hardball Times 5 Questions

The good folks at the Hardball Times kindly asked that I write the 5-Questions Season Preview for the Reds, and you can find the result published here.

It's not the most in-depth piece I've ever written, but I think it does a good job of setting up the coming season. As I see it, the Reds' hopes in '08 will come down to how well their young guys pitch. If two of Bailey, Cueto, and Volquez have good seasons in the rotation (regardless of who starts the year where), the Reds could be pretty exciting toward the end of the year. If not... meh.

Also, for a small bit of controversy, I argue that Dusty does not, in fact, have an extreme tendency to favor veterans over youth.

Similar articles have also been published on the Brewers, Cubs, and Cards, with the Pirates and Astros due to be published tomorrow. Good way to get caught up on our division rivals.

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This is only tangentially related, but I also wanted to highlight Chris's excellent post on Dusty Baker. I have my share of reservations about Dusty, but his ability to handle and motivate players is clearly a strength...and might have quantifiable impacts on player performance.

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Update: Holy crap! Rob Neyer picked up on the Baker commentary in his blog at ESPN! I need to send stuff to THT more often. :)

Thanks to Joel for the tip, as I don't have a subscription to ESPN.