This is about to get really fun.
Cincinnati Reds fans have spent the majority of the 2014 season discussing who the team should get rid of at the trade deadline. Now that the team seems to be giving the fanbase a bit of hope, it might be about time to consider the possibilities if the Reds choose to become buyers at the deadline as opposed to sellers.
For general manager Walt Jocketty, this is when he is at his best. When his teams are in need of a player or two in order to get them over the proverbial “hump”, Jocketty tends to rise to the occasion. He has shown his superior ability in this aspect over the years whether it be acquiring Mark Muler, Scott Rolen, Larry Walker and Jim Edmonds during his time with the St. Louis Cardinals or Rolen (again), Mat Latos, Shin-Soo Choo and Jonathan Broxton with the Reds.
Jocketty excels as “wheeling and dealing”. Look at most of those acquisitions above; many of those trades took the league and fans by storm when they happened. Sure, everyone may have known the team was in need of a specific addition, but Jocketty always seems to have something up his sleeve — something no one seems to expect. And the thing is, those trades are the ones that seem to be the most successful for him.
If a team is looking to sell and rebuild, that isn’t necessarily the strength of Jocketty. His mindset is firmly planted on building an immediate winner by putting together a team that can contend immediately. That was the reason for his success in St. Louis, but it was also the reasoning behind his firing as well. With Jocketty, there is always a fine “window” his teams seem to have in order to make a sustaining run.
As the July 31 trade deadline approaches, the Reds are putting Jocketty in prime position to be where he can excel as a buyer in the industry. Instead of rebuilding for next year, Jocketty can begin improving a team with their sights set on immediate success. Whether it be a subtle improvement for the bullpen or landing a power hitting bat to firmly plant in left field, it is a foregone conclusion that Jocketty will be on the hunt. And after a lackluster 2013 trade deadline and subsequent offseason, Jocketty and the Reds can no longer afford to sit pat and hope this team can make it over the playoff hump.
The Reds have done exactly what Jocketty needed by returning to .500 and letting him take it from there. It’s your move, Uncle Walt. Impress us.
Get to Great American Ballpark to see the team even before the deadline by getting you Reds tickets here.