Big Red Machine All-Star team
Most conversation about the Reds and the history of the franchise begins and ends with the Big Reds Machine. What if we took that team out of the mix?
Who would make a Post Big Red Machine All-Star team for the Reds......choosing from Reds that have played since 1980?
Pick the best players, by position, based on their body of work with the Reds, NOT on a single season, since 1980.
My Reds post Big Red Machine All-Star team:
C: Tucker Barnhart Tough one. I'll take Tuck's combo of handling pitchers/defense over Ryan Hanigan. Hanigan had a better ability to get on base (.359) and was the catcher for three playoff teams (2010-12-13). Both have a .703 OPS with the Reds. But Barnhart's two Gold Gloves is the difference.
1B: Joey Votto (Slam Dunk)
2B: Brandon Phillips (Slam Dunk)
SS: Barry Larkin(Slam Dunk)
3B: This was the toughest call. I'm taking Chris Sabo over Todd Frazier and Scott Rolen. Frazier has slight edge on Sabo in OPS (.784/.775) and OPS+ (113/111). Frazier also delivered an iconic HR Derby moment. But Sabo was a symbol of blue collar for the Reds. He made more All-Star teams than Frazier (3/2), won NL Rookie of the Year and got a ring. I gave Rolen strong consideration for his clubhouse presence and impact on the Reds getting back to the playoffs.
LF: Adam Dunn. His four consecutive seasons of 40-100-100 is tough to beat. Kal Daniels is very underrated (.301-.406-.506-.913, 149+). If only Kevin Mitchell had played in more than 225 games with the Reds (.332-.414-.631-.1.045). Greg Vaughn had an incredible single season that's not easy to discount from a production and clubhouse impact (45 HR/118 RBI).
CF: Eric Davis. We got his prime and it was special.
RF: Jay Bruce. Dave Parker had back-to-back Top 5 MVP finishes, but he was only a Red for four season. I go with Jay Bruce's nine years of production that included three consecutive 30/90+ HR and RBI seasons, three All-Star appearances and an iconic division clinching homer.
Utility: I'll take the versatility of Ryan Freel.
RH SP: Jose Rijo.....his ERA and ERA+ easily tops Mario Soto and Johnny Cueto. Plus, Rijo he won a ring and World Series MVP.
LH SP: Tom Browning. His ERA (3.92) was higher than Danny Jackson 3.61, but I give Mr. Perfect the edge with a 20 win season and 123 career wins.
Set-up: Scott Sullivan. I'll take a guy that pitched 97+ innings out of the pen five straight years.
Closer: Aroldis Chapman (Slam Dunk)
Manager: Lou Piniella. Davey Johnson had the higher win percentage (.543/.525). Dusty Baker (.524) had the most playoff appearances and wins (.509), but Sweet Lou's ring seals it.
Here are just a few candidates to consider:
C: Bo Diaz, Joe Oliver, Eddie Taubensee, Ryan Hanigan, Jason LaRue, Devin Mesoraco, Tucker Barnhart
1B: Dan Driessen, Hal Morris, Sean Casey, Joey Votto
2B: Ron Oester, Mariano Duncan, Bret Boone, Pokey Reese, Brandon Phillips
SS: Felipe Lopez, Barry Larkin, Zack Cozart
3B: Ray Knight, Buddy Bell, Chris Sabo, Aaron Boone, Scott Rolen, Todd Frazier, Eugenio Suarez
LF: Kal Daniels, Billy Hatcher, Kevin Mitchell, Greg Vaughn, Dmitri Young, Adam Dunn, Adam Duvall
CF: Eric Davis, Mike Cameron, Ken Griffey Jr., Drew Stubbs, Shin-Soo Choo, Billy Hamilton
RF: Dave Parker, Paul O'Neill, Reggie Sanders, Austin Kearns, Jay Bruce
Utility: Ryan Freel, Chris Stynes, Michael Tucker, Miguel Cairo, Chris Heisey
RH SP: Mario Soto, Tom Seaver, Jose Rijo, Pete Harnisch, Aaron Harang, Bronson Arroyo, Johnny Cueto
LH SP: Tom Browning, John Smiley, Danny Jackson
Closer: John Franco, Rob Dibble, Randy Myers, Danny Graves, Francisco Cordero, Aroldis Chapman, Raisel Iglesias
Set-up: Arthur Rhodes, Rob Murphy, Norm Charlton, Scott Sullivan, Sam LeCure, Nick Masset
Manager: Lou Piniella, Jack McKeon, Dusty Baker, Davey Johnson, Pete Rose
Put your team together and discuss HERE