Sept. 4: Price confirmed to reporters today that his 2018 option has been exercised by the team (Twitter links via MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon). “It’s a good thing, I think, for all of us because we’d like to see this thing through to the other side,” said the skipper.
Sept. 2: Manager Bryan Price will remain at the helm of the Reds in 2018, C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Thanks to a clause in the contract Price signed last year, the Reds were required to inform him by Saturday whether they’d exercise his 2018 club option. However, the team actually assured him in July that he’d return, per Rosecrans, who adds that Price’s entire coaching staff will likely be invited back.
Next season will be the ninth in Cincinnati for Price, who served as predecessor Dusty Baker’s pitching coach from 2010-13 before taking over as the club’s manager. The Reds have gone just 276-355 in three-plus seasons under Price, haven’t won more than 76 games in an individual year during his reign and rank among the majors’ worst teams in 2017 with a 58-77 mark. That isn’t to suggest Price has been at fault, though, as the Reds are in the midst of a rebuild and have been devoid of pitching during his tenure. This year’s Reds entered Saturday last in the sport in ERA (5.29) and pitching fWAR (2.5). To put the latter figure in perspective, 34 big league starters and four relievers have posted an equal or better fWAR than the combined total of the 29 pitchers the Reds have used in 2017.
Given their woes on the mound, it’s no surprise that the Reds are toward the bottom of the standings yet again. There have been some bright spots this year, however, including the continued brilliance of first baseman Joey Votto and breakouts from young starter Luis Castillo, relief ace Raisel Iglesias and third baseman Eugenio Suarez.
The performance of a manager is difficult to quantify, meaning it’s unclear how much the 55-year-old Price has positively or negatively impacted any of the Reds’ players. Regardless, he and his staff have shown enough to general manager Dick Williams to warrant at least another year in the dugout.