To Sell Or Not To Sell

Updated: December 26, 2015

zephyrs-featuredNovember 7th, 2022: Reno, NV – A baseball season is a long slog of 162 games and there comes a time when everyone on the team just knows what direction they are heading. No one is talking about it in the Reno Zephyrs front office but they knew fairly early on that 2022 wasn’t going to be their year. Several key players fell to injuries and several more just didn’t seem up to the task. More than a few team meetings were called but nothing seemed to shake the Zephyrs out of their season long funk. You could easily see that there was no culture of win on the 2022 Zephyrs baseball team.

In a post mortem analysis of the season, it is somewhat striking to see that while the team only managed 73 wins, 82 wins would have been enough for a Wild Card slot. If you look at this team, you can see that there are a lot of players who appear poised for a “bounce back season.” Starting pitchers Félix “Cyclone” Maese and José “The Fly” Patino are coming back from long term injuries and could add a hefty one-two punch to the rotation. Starting pitcher Jhong-shun “Earthquake” Kong had a terrible season and could come much closer to his career numbers next season. A stable of young outfielders with high potential look poised for big things, while Tony “Whitey” Carmona might have a season or two left in the tank before he completely falls apart.

It is very difficult for front office personnel to decide when to pull the trigger on a fire sale. Winning is addictive and fire sales typically precede years and years of losing. The fans in Reno certainly know how painful that can be. It is very important to get the timing perfect on having a fire sale. A well timed sale can shorten the time for turning a losing team around. If you miss your window and mistakenly think you are just a few small changes away from contention, you could be in for a long and painful rebuild.

That is exactly where Reno finds itself. To sell or not to sell – that is the question. Your guess is as good as mine. Although, if you are not sure, one would think the team owes it to the fans to take another crack at a winning season. After all, that is why they play the game. Fire sales can be quite demoralizing to the fans. If the front office has even a sliver of hope that this team could contend, they should try to add a few marginal players and see how things shake out.

As it stands now, the rotation seems pretty set with Maese, Patino, Kong and the two Michaels, Johnson and Ladner. What they need is someone who can hit a little and play solid defense at shortstop or second base, as well as a decent right-handed relief pitcher. And of course, these players need to be signed to inexpensive contracts due to the team’s financial troubles.
Cut bait or fight on? Either way, I am sure we can find fault in the choice. zephyrs-featured