Reds president of baseball operations Dick Williams gave an interesting interview to David Laurila of Fangraphs that’s worth a read. The top Cincy baseball decisionmaker noted that it’s harder for clubs of that market size to pay solid veterans on short-term deals during a rebuilding campaign, which is one of several factors that tends to make the process more painful. But the organization is plainly committed to doing it and doing it right. Williams detailed many different initiatives underway after an exhaustive review of “where we thought dollars would have a better return on investment than at the major league payroll level.” You’ll want to give the post a full read.
Here’s more from the National League:
- With Ian Desmond set to miss a chunk of time early in the season, the Rockies are sorting through their options for filling in, as Nick Groke of the Denver Post writes. Mark Reynolds is the obvious choice as a primary replacement, of course, but the team will need to line up some bodies behind him. With manager Bud Black saying the club hopes to “take advantage” of the versatility of some of their own players, he lined up each of Jordan Patterson, Stephen Cardullo, and Cristhian Adames at first in drills. Whether the organization might look at external names isn’t known, but Black did say that he has not heard any discussion surrounding former Rockies first bagger Justin Morneau.
- Righty Matt Wisler is still trying to establish himself for the Braves, Michael Cunningham of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes. The 24-year-old has been hit hard this spring, as he was in the majors last year, and there doesn’t seem to be much chance that he’ll crack the MLB rotation unless there’s an injury or big performance downturn during the season. Still, manager Brian Snitker says he’s a believer — at least in the quality of Wisler’s offerings. “[I]t’s just location– fastball location,” Black said of Wisler’s struggles. “He’s just got to keep working on location. The stuff is there. The kid’s stuff is too good not to be successful.”
- Jordan Schafer’s efforts to make the Cardinals roster as a lefty reliever have run into some difficulties, as MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch Reports. The 30-year-old is dealing with forearm soreness, with the root cause yet to be determined. He hadn’t been particularly effective in his five outings anyway, and struggled upon reaching Triple-A briefly last year with the Dodgers organization. But Schafer was actually quite impressive at Double-A in 2016, working to a 3.15 ERA with 10.4 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 over forty frames.