Saturday, December 5, 2009

Reds in on Noah Lowry??

Well, the hot stove is starting to heat up and it looks like the Reds are actually considering doing something I'd like to see them do, which is a real rarity. Mark Sheldon, Reds beat writer, reports that the Reds are interested in southpaw Noah Lowry.

Here's the blurb:

With only a one day break on Sunday after two days of Redsfest, the Winter Meetings will be up and running at full speed on Monday in Indianapolis. Reds GM Walt Jocketty was hopeful that his team would be involved in some activity.

"I'd say I'm hopeful that something will happen. It makes the week a lot more fun," Jocketty said on Saturday.

Jocketty confirmed recent reports that the Reds were interested in free agent infielder Jamey Carroll and left-handed starter Noah Lowry.

"We haven't discussed him at length," Jocketty said of Carroll. "He's gutty and a tough player, a gamer-type of guy that's hard-nosed."

Carroll would be a possible choice for shortstop where Paul Janish currently plays. But that doesn't mean the Reds are souring on Janish, although they've made their interest in adding someone there known.

"If there was somebody that stands out as a good defensive player and a better offensive player, we'd have to be interested," Jocketty said. "But both Dusty and I would be happy with Janish as our shortstop because defense is so key."

Carroll spent the last two seasons with the Indians but did not play shortstop there. He did play second base, third base and both corner outfield spots.

As for Lowry, who has been with the Giants for all of his five big league seasons, he could be someone for the vacant fifth spot in the Reds rotation.

"If he's healthy, yeah," Jocketty said.

Lowry hasn't pitched since 2007 because of a myriad of injuries. He had forarm surgery two years ago and in 2009, had a rib removed to relieve soreness in his shoulder and neck brought on by a condition called thoracic outlet syndrome.

Suffice it to say, I think a healthy Lowry could potentially be a very good addition to the organization. Nice to see the Reds, at the very least, kick the tires on Noah.


  1. Lark,

    How would you compare Travis Wood and Matt Maloney to Noah Lowry? It seems (from scouting reports) that they have similar repertoires (fastballs topping out in the low-90's and good change-ups).

    Who has the higher ceiling, Wood or Maloney? And who do you prefer to round out your rotation? Maloney's final 3 starts were pretty good, posting a 2.65 era and a solid WHIP. But when he gets hit, he gets hit hard...really hard. I haven't seen Wood throw so I can't really comment on him.

  2. Hey Pete,

    Wood definitely has a higher ceiling than Maloney. Wood has a plus change-up and potentially a plus cutter, whereas Maloney doesn't really have a plus offering. Maloney's success is driven by control and pitchability. Wood's better stuff gives him the higher ceiling. As for who I want rounding out the rotation, I'd like to see Wood get a bit more seasoning at triple-A, so I'd go with Matt Maloney in 2010.

    I like Maloney. I think he could be a good 5th starter or a decent 4th starter. I think you're right on about Maloney. He's a command pitcher and when he misses his spots he simply doesn't have the stuff to get away with it.

    As for Wood, I think he has #2 starter upside. Still, 2009 was obviously a big breakthrough for Wood, so it'll be interesting to see how much of his 2009 improvement he gives back in 2010. Next season will reveal whether Wood is more of a #2/3 or a #3/4. My money is on the former, but I think some more time at triple-A would be of use to him.

    As for Noah Lowry, my opinion on him is based on his MLB performance. Of course, he was last in the majors in 2007, so I don't know if he'll be the same pitcher. Rumor has it that he is 100% healthy, so he SHOULD be able to bounce back. Still, 2 years off is a long time.

    In 2003-2005 (albeit, 2003 was a VERY small sample size), Lowry was a pretty damn good pitcher. He posted ratios of ~2.5 BB/9 and ~7.0 K/9 in each of the three seasons. He had/has a plus change-up and a very good feel for pitching. When he was going well, he had stretches of true dominance, which isn't easy to do without plus velocity. During that three year span, he was a legitimate #2/3 starter. In 2006 and 2007, Lowry's walk rate rose and his strikeout rate fell. I'm not entirely sure what happened, but I suspect that his decline in performance was injury related.

    At this point, I'd be happy with Lowry if he came in and was a solid #5 starter. I wouldn't be surprised if he was more than that, but maybe it's not reasonable to expect right off the bat. Still, I think he's a nice risk/reward acquisition.


  3. i also like lowry, would be a great pickup. I also like carrol, but i would play him at second and move phillips to ss if i was in charge...

  4. Smitty,

    I have no interest in Jamey Carroll. Personally, I think the notion of Phillips being shifted over to short set sail long ago. Still, if we were going to do it, then I'd much rather go out and get Kelly Johnson to play 2b for us. I've always loved his approach and swing. His defense is around league average, but a change of scenery might really be what he needs to unlock his offensive potential.

    If the Reds sign Jamey Carroll, then I'd be amazed if Dusty doesn't have him starting at shortstop over Paul Janish. Carroll strikes me as being an over the hill veteran without much left in the tank to contribute.

    Anyway, my $.02.


  5. i like his on base percentage, and he is a plus defender at 2nd. he also is noted as being a good presence in the clubhouse. lack of power is the only negative i see cuz he would (should) be cheap

  6. lark where you been man?

  7. Smitty,

    Sorry, been a hectic week. No rest for the weary.