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Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

Posted on: December 17, 2011 1:36 pm
Edited on: December 17, 2011 7:59 pm
Mat Latos

By C. Trent Rosecrans

The Reds have been looking for a top-of-the-rotation starter for the last two years and filled it, but at a deep cost, sending Yonder Alonso, Edinson Volquez, Brad Boxberger and Yasmani Grandal to the Padres for 24-year-old right-hander Mat Latos, the team announced on Saturday.

Hot Stove League

In Latos, the Reds get a partner for Johnny Cueto at the top of their rotation, something they've desperately needed. Latos, who just turned 24, isn't arbitration-eligible until 2013 and is 27-29 with a 3.37 ERA in three seasons with the Padres. Latos was 9-14 with a 3.47 ERA in 31 starts for the Padres last season, striking out 185 batters in 194 1/3 innings.

"Mat is a big, strong young pitcher with electric stuff," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said in a release from the team. "We consider him to be a potential number one starter who, contractually, we have under control for four more years. To acquire a pitcher who is ready to fit into the top of a rotation, you have to give up talent." 

Alonso hit .330/.398/.545 with five home runs and 15 RBI in 98 plate appearances for the Reds last season. A first baseman, Alonso was blocked in Cincinnati by Joey Votto. He had played some left field hoping to get time there, but he's more suited to first base.

Grandal, a switch-hitting cathcer, was the team's first-round pick in 2010 out of the University of Miami. Boxberger was a potential closer for the Reds this season after being taken in the first round of the 2009 draft. Volquez, an All-Star in 2008, was acquired in the trade that sent Josh Hamilton to Texas.

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Since: Apr 13, 2011
Posted on: December 29, 2011 11:30 pm

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

The Reds and Latos are going to find out that pitching in the infamously pitcher-friendly Petco is quite different from trying to hurl it in the Great American Bandbox.

Since: Feb 20, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 8:02 pm

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

All I can say is if they are willing to give up that much, they better get off their tight asses and sign Votto!!

Since: May 17, 2007
Posted on: December 18, 2011 3:52 pm

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

I think I sort of agree with the poster who says the Padres might be well served to turn around and deal Alonso for a guy as good as they gave up to get him.

I think the other piece of this that doesn't mesh is that the Reds keep trading guys to get pitchers in a ballpark where hitting is as important as pitching. You need 5 runs to win in GABP, and don't expect shutouts from your staff.

So trading your offense for pitching is a questionable strategy for at least 81 games.

I don't like this trade, all in all.

I am not surprised to see Volquez go, thought he might be headed for the Mets.

Since: Sep 8, 2006
Posted on: December 18, 2011 2:47 pm

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

 If I was a Reds fan, what would concern me is why they didn't use these chips to acquire a more accomplished starter or starters this season or even last year.
Exactly my point!  I don't think anyone HATES Latos, but it just looks like the Reds gave up too much for him.  For everyone who keeps saying the Reds need to win now and that this is the year to make a move, all they did here was make a move at the NL Central.  This move doesn't scare other NL playoff teams.  Are the Phillies shaking in their boots?  A couple of years ago, they swept a Reds team out of the playoffs that was better than next year's looks to be.

So again, why give up future stars and/or high-end prospects to make a run at a weakened NL Central if you're not putting together a championship team?  I know there was no room for Alonzo and Grandel since they were blocked at their positions, but you have to get better value for them when they're packaged together with two other contributors.   

Since: Dec 28, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 12:51 pm

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

I do agree that Reds gave up too much in this trade and could have gotten more in return, but I would rather have Latos at the league minimum with 4 years of team control than Shields at 4.25 million or Beckett at 17 million. A guy like Latos at the league minimum is exactly what the Reds need in order to sign a decent bat in free agency. I would take him over Shields irregardless , and Beckett isnt happening at that salary.

Since: Jul 8, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 11:56 am

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

It's rare that a trade involving such a young accomplished player like Latos and players with such upside (insert Red's prospects) occurs. It'll take years to determine who really won this deal. Short term the Reds improved their MLB club, and the Padres made a great move long term. Latos's value would probably not have gotten any greater and they hauled in a bundle of top rate talent. Volquez will get righted and be a good SP in that ball park. Alonzo, and Grandel should play this year. If I was a Reds fan, what would concern me is why they didn't use these chips to acquire a more accomplished starter or starters this season or even last year. For example, could they have used the exact same chips to acquire other SPs that are rumored to be available like Sheilds (TB), Beckett (Bos), etc.

Since: Jun 13, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 11:23 am

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

I'm with you @gvsulaker82.I saw this kid pitch live & in person at Citi Field in 2010 & his stuff is electric.Bottom of the 1st,Reyes leads off with an infield single into the hole.It was a day game so they had their mbackup Catcher playing;I think it was Barajas who hit a 2-Run HR & that was the last hit he gave up in 7+IP.I also agree with the fact that he's not a #3 Starter but on this upcoming years Reds team he'll be either a #1 or a #2 along with Cueto holding down the other spot.The one thing that does concern me is the fact that Cincinnati's Home park is a bandbox.Most power Pitchers are fly ball pitchers & that could be a problem for Latos,but I do agree he's got loads of talent & plenty of years ahead of him.As long as he gives up solo HRs,he could live.He came out the gate kinda shaky last season but settled down.I like the kid. 

Since: Mar 16, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2011 11:03 am

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

Trade a bunch of guys who were good or could be good for a guy who does. Yeah years from now we could look back and say this was a terrible trade for the Reds.  But their window is now they need to win now.  Alonso is positioned blocked as is Grandal.  Volquez is a head case and Boxberger is a ways a away.  The Reds improved their 25 where as the Padres improved their 40 man.  This also will be cheaper and open up spots for others.

Since: Mar 15, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 10:29 am

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

Keep in mind that 3.37 ERA was obtained in one of the most pitcher friendly ballparks in should translate to about 4.5 at Great American. This is a bust trade for the Red's.....they could have gotten Big Game James Shields from TB for less....Should never have traded Grandel in the deal...he was worth much more in a trade package. Padres got a steal...!

Since: Feb 1, 2008
Posted on: December 18, 2011 10:23 am

Reds send four to San Diego for Latos

I agree with fatcharlie.  The Reds have a window of opportunity now.  Are they supposed to hold onto guys who haven't established themselves at the MLB level when a true ace is available?  Of the four guys they sent to SD, Volquez had one good MLB season.  That's it.  Latos makes the Reds much better in the short-run. 

I'm more concerned about Stubbs regression last year than this deal.

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