It’s April 19th. We’re 18ish games into the regular season (Minnesota has only played 13!), and the Cincinnati Reds gave us our first managerial axing of the season.
The Reds have fired Bryan Price after 666 games as the team’s manager.
They had the MLB’s worst winning percentage since he took over (.419) and were off to a 3-15 start this season, which was the 2nd worst through 18 games for the team in the last 100 years. pic.twitter.com/IeTVn8aGuJ
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 19, 2018
Pretty awkward number of games to be fired after tbh. Did the Cincinnati Reds just make a deal with the devil? I mean I guess when you go 279-387 over 4 plus years, you might as well try anything right?
I’m not saying the Cincinnati Reds franchise coming off the train tracks is entirely because Bryan Price was a terrible manager, but he certainly played a role in it. The 2012 Reds won 97 games and the NL Central. They choked in the playoffs. The 2013 Reds won 90 games and played in the wild card game. They lost.
Tired of postseason failures, they fired Dusty Baker (if we’re being honest here, Dusty gets fired a lot for fucking up in the playoffs).
The Reds replaced him with pitching coach Bryan Price.
The Reds immediately plummeted 14 games down the win column, finishing 2014 with 76 wins despite having largely the same roster of the past two seasons. 2015 saw 64 wins, which was the worst season of the Price era.
Now here’s where this whole thing gets really ugly. During the 2015 season GM Walt Jocketty traded Johnny Cueto to the Royals for Brandon Finnegan, John Lamb and Cody Reed. Finnegan has pitched in 5 games since 2016 for the Reds. John Lamb went 2-12 in 24 starts. He’s now in the Angels organization. Cody Reed is 1-8 with a 6.65 ERA in 26 appearances for Cincinncati.
Other bad trades the Reds made in this time frame include:
Todd Frazier for Scott Schebler and Jose Peraza
Aroldis Chapman for Caleb Cotham, Rookie Daivs, Eric Jagielo and Tony Renda
Of those six players, only Scott Schebler has been kinda good. The Yankees got more for Chapman went they dealt him to the Cubs as a rental.
Then there was this weird thing in 2016 and 2017 where Brandon Phillips refused to be traded, which set the Reds back a little bit more. He finally did get sent to the Braves, but it was for spare parts at that point.
You can argue that Price wasn’t given much to work with.
An incompetent front office will do that. But at the end of the day, Price inherited a good team, and greatly under performed.
No Reds player ever developed under Bryan Price, especially the pitchers. Cincinnati currently ranks 29th in most major pitching categories, ahead of only the Chicago White Sox. But at the least the White Sox have talent. The Reds don’t.
Bottom line, it was time for Price to go. Get a new voice in there that can change the way pitchers think things through, and who sees the game in a different way than Price did. A franchise will never rebuild effectively when their major league manager is incapable of helping players grow.
-Brian Borders (@bborders12)