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Paul Daugherty
Enquirer columnist files news and observations

Paul Daugherty
Paul Daugherty has been an Enquirer sports columnist since 1994 and has been chronicling Cincinnati sports since 1988. He has covered almost every major sporting event in America, as well as five Summer Olympics. Along the way, he has been named one of the country's top-5 sports columnists four times, and Ohio columnist of the year on seven different occasions. Last year, he was voted 2nd-best sports columnist in the country, by the Associated Press Sports Editors.

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Batting 3rd for the Reds...

Forever talk about trading Ken Griffey Jr is beginning to miss the point. If a deal involving him is inevitable, it's news to me. If the Reds intend to keep him beyond this year, the Titanic will rise from the deep.

More likely, he's here the rest of the year, so the better question is:

Why is he still hitting 3rd?

I'm not among those who think Junior is done, though you do wonder what his legs have left. (To those who suggest he doesnt run hard, please ponder the thought he's running as hard as his legs will allow.) You dont go from 30 homers at age 37 to, say, 10 or 15, at age 38, not if you play 135 games or so. He'll hit better. Griffey has always hit HRs in bunches, and I think a bunch will come.

For now, though, why is he still hitting 3rd?

Since 4/23, Junior has 1 HR and 6BI... those are 7- or 8-hole #s. Compare them to these, over the same time:

Phillips: 6 and 15;
Double E: 3 and 9
Votto: 4 and 8, though 3 HRs came in one game.

Baker can bat Dunn 7th, why not Griffey?

Your 3 hitter has to be your most productive hitter. That's Phillips. Since Griffey isn't likely to be traded or benched, don't you do what's best for the team and move him out of the 3-spot, until he heats up?


18 Comments:

at 11:19 AM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Good post Paul, The Crawl to 600 contiunes!
ST CSA

 
at 11:23 AM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Just one thing, you didn't go back far enough documenting Jrs 'slump'. I am too lazy to look up his stats but I would like to know what he hit for the second half of last season.
St CSA

 
at 11:35 AM Blogger russ said...

The Reds most productive hitter over the last several seasons (looking at intangible statistics like RBIs, HRs, OBP and Slugging) is Adam Dunn. What would be so wrong about having a guy who gets on base almost 4 times every 10 at bats hitting third? Also, Dunn is much less prone to hitting into double plays than Phillips.

 
at 1:08 PM Blogger Thad said...

He is still hitting third because he wouldwhine like a little school girl if he didn't bat 2nd or 3rd.

 
at 1:41 PM Blogger Jordan Hall said...

russ,

in·tan·gi·ble
–adjective
1.not tangible; incapable of being perceived by the sense of touch, as incorporeal or immaterial things; impalpable.

Thank you.

 
at 3:45 PM Blogger russ said...

Thanks Webster. I know what the word means. I was using it facetiously because the blog's author seems to think that the Reds most productive player (and a homegrown one at that) for the last half decade is the problem. Did I whiff or did it just go over your head?

 
at 4:05 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

QUOTE:
"He is still hitting third because he wouldwhine like a little school girl if he didn't bat 2nd or 3rd"

.....yes he would, but when did he start signing the paychecks? Who gives a damn, let him whine or go home.

St CSA

 
at 7:44 PM Blogger crab42 said...

Would someone tell me how Brandon Phillips is the most productive hitter? He's a good hitter, but he is in no way (this year or last) the most productive hitter.

 
at 8:22 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Paul, you are enabling the Grif >>> (To those who suggest he doesnt run hard, please ponder the thought he's running as hard as his legs will allow.)

When he stands at home plate admiring a potential home run that turns into a very long single - that's just grand-standing and ... a terrible example to the team & manager.

38 year old legs can be worn out if you're an NFL running back. Baseball player? - only if you never work out (ref A. Dunn).

 
at 9:27 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the NFL, a declining over-paid "super-star" is traded/cut asap and replaced by a young stud who wants it. Time for Bruce!

 
at 3:12 AM Blogger UCFan79 said...

Speed goes with age. Paul's right.

Dusty expects Griffey to break out of his slump any moment. He also expects that some form of respect will be shown to Griffey by opposing pitchers. If that's true, it's quickly fading.

All this said, would anyone be surprised if Griffey's name pulls him lots of all star votes for another year?

 
at 7:26 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Griffey can still bat in the #3 slot. He just needs more rest at age 38 to be most productive. I’d recommend Dusty rest him a game or two each week. When Hank Aaron was 38, he played 129 games and hit 34 homers. At 39 Aaron played in 120 games, hit 40 homers and knocked in 92. Not bad for a guy (like Griffey) “not taking steroids”. I think Jr. can still do it, just not every day. Lou E.

 
at 10:04 AM Blogger Another losing season said...

Griffey is still hitting third because that is where Dusty is batting him. This just reinforces the chief complaint and conception with Baker...he favors veterans regardless.

Griffey should be sitting.

 
at 2:02 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

have you checked Jr.'s batting average and production the past three week to a month. It's not pretty. Call up the youngster from AAA and let the young guys form a new Red Machine.

 
at 2:50 PM Blogger Cheviot Sports Authority said...

Aaron kept himself in shape and was a better hitter to start with.
St CSA

 
at 3:36 PM Blogger Jason Manring said...

Personally, I think when Kepp comes back, he should be in the 3 hole.

My lineup would be this:

1. Freel/Hairston/Patterson
2. Dunn
3. Kepp
4. Votto
5. Phillips
6. Griffey
7. EE
8. Bako/Ross

 
at 6:47 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

St. CSA, yah right... late in his career, Aaron would sit in the dugout waiting to move to the on deck circle, smoking a cigarette. Maybe it was the nicotine that helped him hit 40 hr's at age 39.

 
at 2:22 PM Blogger kingseyeland said...

1. Freel - CF
2. SS (whoever)
3. Dunn
4. Encarnacion
5. Votto
6. Phillips
7. Griffey
8. Bako/Ross

Looks pretty L/R, doesn't it? High OBP near the top, then clutch hitters 4-6. Plus that's consistent with Dusty's tendency to bat the CF and SS at 1 and 2, regardless of who they are.

 
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