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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Reds Rumors: The Griffey Shift

No, I'm not talking about the adjusted defensive alignment that teams often use when Ken Griffey Jr comes to the plate. Actually the latest Reds Rumors have Griffey sliding over to play leftfield in the Cincinnati Reds outfield. For what it's worth, I don't believe these rumors, I'm just relaying them.

If you live in the Tri-State area and frequent the sports talk stations, you're probably familiar with a couple of local windbags known as the "Two Angry Guys". The Two Angry Guys, Richard Skinner and Tom Gamble, are on 1360 The Homer weekday mornings during drive-time. Both hosts believe (and insist on regularly shoving this belief down listners' throats) that the Reds would be improved if Griffey moved to leftfield, Dunn to firstbase, and Ryan Freel took over in center.

The argument is that Griffey will have a decreased chance of getting hurt, with less ground to cover in left, and that the team will still be defensively solid with Freel in center. I disagree. My feelings are that Griffey is a superior centerfielder over anyone else the Reds have on their major league roster, or even in the minor league system. Also, the Reds are probably better offensively with Hatteberg and Aurilla splitting time at first base.

I might feel differently if the Reds had a hot-shot centerfielder waiting in the wings in AAA, but Chris Denorfia is really more of a corner outfielder than a centerfielder. For now I think the Reds are better served to keep Junior in center, and hope that the injury bug doesn't bite.


  • At 5/16/2006, Blogger Luke said…

    That is funny that you bring this up, because I like the idea of getting Freel into the everyday lineup and moving Dunn to 1B myself. However, Dunn is a terrible defensive 1B so much improvement would be needed.

    I think a lineup that looks like this would be better than if you had Hatteberg.

    CF Freel
    SS Lopez
    LF Griffey
    RF Kearns
    1B Dunn
    3B Encarnacion
    2B Phillips
    C Larue/Valentin/Ross

  • At 5/16/2006, Blogger dwhit said…

    Possible, but I think as Freel showed with Griffey on the DL he's just not an everyday player. He just seems to be prone to long slumps.

    Also if Aurilia were healthy I'd have a better point. He's a good hitter, and is solid defensively at all of the infield positions.


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