Results tagged ‘ Dan Driessen ’

1975 vs. 2011 (part 1)


I thought it would be fun to talk about something other than the winter meetings right now. I also wanted to do a comparison of one of the Reds best teams with last seasons team. Here is part one of that comparison.

In 1975, Cincinnati Reds won 108 games while losing 54, giving them a .667 W-L%. The best record so far in franchise history. I wanted to look more closely at this team and see what pieces were missing from the 2011 Cincinnati Reds that might help them win 108 or more wins in 2012.

Sparky Anderson was the manager of the 1975 Reds while as we all know Dusty Baker is the manager now. I think this is a good place to start. Comparing the two might help understand what kind of challenges the Reds will have right off the bat. Sparky Anderson managed the Cincinnati Reds for 9 years, 1450 games getting 863 wins and 586 losses. He took the team to 4 Pennants and 2 World Series Titles. Dusty Baker has managed the Reds for 4 years, 648 games getting 322 wins and 326 losses. On paper, many will say there is no comparison between the two but from what I have read and heard lately, Dusty Baker is liked a lot by the players on the Reds right now and if he can keep the youngsters motivated to play well everyday I will throw all the paper away and gladly be a Dusty Baker supporter. Sparky Anderson’s best season with the Reds was of course 1975 where they got 108 wins, he saw 100+ wins with the team 3 times. Dusty Baker’s best season was 2010 where the Reds got 91 wins and 71 losses. But for this comparison we are taking Anderson’s 1975 record of 108 wins and 54 loses against Dusty Baker’s 2011 season with 79 wins and 83 losses. Both managers have won Manager of the Year awards but never with the Reds so we will not count them in this discussion. Dusty Baker won 3 (1993, 1997 and 2000) while Sparky Anderson won 2. (1984 and 1987) I remember Sparky Anderson while he managed on the Detroit Tigers and was alway impressed with that team. I remember Dusty Baker more as a player then a manager and I always thought he did very well on the field. I just wish he got his players to play the same way all the time.

Now we move onto position players and I thought we would start with the catchers and then move our way around the base paths and out to the outfield then take a good look into the pitching staff for both teams.

1975 Reds had Johnny Bench, Bill Plummer and 22-year-old Don Werner. 2011 Reds had Ramon Hernandez, Ryan Hanigan and 23-year-old Devin Mesoraco. Before we even begin comparing the two I know many will say once again there is no comparison between the two but we will look into it more just to be fair. Right now I am not sure if there are many players in Major League Baseball that would match Johnny Bench, or should I say, ones that the Reds could afford. At age 27 Johnny Bench played in 142 games going 150 for 530 at bats giving him a .282 BA. He got 28 HRs, 110 RBIs and 83 runs. Can you imagine what he would have done in Great American Ball Park? Bill Plummer saw 65 games ending the season with a .182 BA with 159 at bats. Don Werner only saw 8 at bats and ended the season with a .125 batting average. Johnny Bench also came in 4th in National League MVP voting.

The 2011 Reds had Hernandez and Hanigan playing equal time and both did well in that situation. Ramon Hernandez played in 91 games going 84 for 298 (.282 BA) and getting 12 HRs, 36 RBIs and 28 runs. While Ryan Hanigan played in 91 games getting 71 hits in 266 at bats. (.267 BA) He got 6 HRs, 31 RBIs and 27 runs getting 35 walks and 32 strike outs. Devin Mesoraco played in 18 games going 9 for 50. (.180 BA)

Johnny Bench allowed 32 stolen bases while getting 27 CS and .989 Fld% with 0 PB and 29 WP. Plummer had 23 SB, 2 CS with a .990 Fld%, 2 PB and 19 WP. Don Werner had 6 SB and 0 CS with 1 PB and 1 WP getting a .984 Fld%. On the 2011 Reds Ramon Hernandez got 39 SB, 23 CS, 3 PB, 26 WP and a .998 Fld%. Ryan Hanigan got 34 SB, 18 CS, 2 PB, 18 WP and a .993 Fld%. Devin Mesoraco got 8 SB, 3 CS, 0 PB, 7 WP and a .973 Fld%. So the 1975 Reds had 61 SB – 29 CS and a 32 CS% while the 2011 Reds had 81 SB – 44 CS and a 35 CS%.

When it came to batting, 1975 Reds catchers had a .253 BA, .337 OBP, .439 SLG and a .776 OPS. The 2011 Reds catchers got a .266 BA, .338 OBP, .395 SLG and a .733 OPS. So that just shows that they are not that far off of each other. Of course the .439 SLG for the 1975 Reds makes the difference but everything else is pretty close.

1975 Reds had Tony Perez playing 132 games at first base. Dan Driessen played 41 games while Johnny Bench played 9 and Terry Crowley played 4 and even George Foster played 2 innings that year. Tony Perez went 144 for 511 AB getting a .282 batting average. He got 20 HRs, 109 RBIs with 74 runs. He also came in 15th in National League MVP voting that season. In total players at 1B got a .287 BA, .356 OBP, .480 SLG and .836 OPS for the 1975 Reds.

Joey Votto played the most games at first base for the 2011 Reds with 160 games. Yonder Alonso played 3, Miguel Cairo played in 5, Todd Frazier and Ramon Hernandez both played in one each. Votto got a .309 BA, .416 OBP, .531 SLG and a .947 OPS with 29 HRs, 103 RBIs and 101 runs in 2011 putting him 6th in National League MVP voting. In total 1B produced very well for the 2011 Reds with a .311 BA, .415 OBP, .538 SLG and .953 OPS. By far the best production for any position that year.

Bring back Bruce Berenyi


I have been focusing a lot on pitching lately because that seems to be the hot topic for the Cincinnati Reds right now. And while I like the idea of all of their young pitchers starting in 2012 I also would love to see a veteran pitcher come in to help teach these youngsters how to play properly. Bruce Berenyi was the first pitcher to come to mind. I really have no idea why but he just was. Now don’t get me wrong, I know at 57 years old he probably would not want to come back and pitch in Major League Baseball but he was the first guy I thought of and why not run with it and just have some fun talking about a great Reds pitcher who I will never forget.

Berenyi was drafted by the Reds in the 1st round (3rd pick) of the 1976 amateur draft. He debuted on Saturday, July 5, 1980 at Riverfront Stadium at the age of 25 years old. He got lit up by the Houston Astros only pitching in 0.1 inning, facing 7 batters and giving up 5 hits, 6 runs with 1 walk and only 1 strike out. Not the kind of start most young pitchers want when they first get to the big leagues but I am sure it was an eye opener for him no matter what. Mario Soto came in and pitched 8.2 innings after him to get the Reds the win 8 – 6. That year Berenyi went on to start in 5 more games for the Reds and finished with a 2 – 2 record getting a 7.81 ERA. He also pitched for the Indianapolis Indians in the AAA American Association where he started 20 games and finished with a 5 – 8 record getting 121 strike outs and a 4.32 ERA. His most strike outs in the minors was the year before in 1979 for Indianapolis with 136 where he started 25 games (166 IP) finishing with 9 wins and 9 losses and getting a 2.82 ERA.

The next season (1981) he pitched in 21 games (20 starts) getting 5 complete games, 3 shutouts while only allowing 77 walks and recording 106 strike outs finishing the season with a 9 – 6 record and getting a 3.50 ERA and a 7.6 SO/9. Coming in 4th in the National League Rookie of the Year voting getting beat out by Fernando Valenzuela, Tim Raines and Hubie Brooks. The Reds of course went on to finish 1st in the National League West that season with 66 wins and 42 losses with such players as Johnny Bench, Dan Driessen, Dave Concepcion, Ken Griffey, Mario Soto and Tom Seaver. But of course the 1981 season was divided into two halves with the first and second half champs (Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros) facing each other prior to the league championship series due to an extended player strike in the middle of the season. The Dodgers went on to win the World Series over the New York Yankees 4 games to 2.

Berenyi went on to pitch 5 years for the Reds and 3 years for the New York Mets finishing with a 44 – 55 career record with 607 SO and a 7.0 SO/9 and a 4.03 ERA. Which does not make him the best Reds pitcher in the history of the franchise but one that I will never forget.


Bruce Berenyi

                                                               
Year    Age   Tm  W  L  ERA  GS CG SHO    IP  BB  SO  WHIP SO/9
1980     25  CIN  2  2 7.81   6  0   0  27.2  23  19 2.060  6.2
1981     26  CIN  9  6 3.50  20  5   3 126.0  77 106 1.381  7.6
1982     27  CIN  9 18 3.36  34  4   1 222.1  96 157 1.367  6.4
1983     28  CIN  9 14 3.86  31  4   1 186.1 102 151 1.476  7.3
1984     29  TOT 12 13 4.45  30  0   0 166.0  95 134 1.554  7.3
1984     29  CIN  3  7 6.00  11  0   0  51.0  42  53 2.059  9.4
1984     29  NYM  9  6 3.76  19  0   0 115.0  53  81 1.330  6.3
1985     30  NYM  1  0 2.63   3  0   0  13.2  10  10 1.317  6.6
1986     31  NYM  2  2 6.35   7  0   0  39.2  22  30 1.739  6.8
7 Seasons        44 55 4.03 131 13   5 781.2 425 607 1.478  7.0
162 Game Avg.    11 14 4.03  33  3   1   195 106 151 1.478  7.0
                                                               
CIN (5 yrs)      32 47 3.96 102 13   5 613.1 340 486 1.492  7.1
NYM (3 yrs)      12  8 4.28  29  0   0 168.1  85 121 1.426  6.5

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/23/2011.

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