Is Yonder Alonso Ready for the Cincinnati Reds, or a Year Away?

Cliff EasthamSenior Writer IIMarch 19, 2010

SARASOTA, FL - FEBRUARY 18:  Yonder Alonso #77 of the Cincinnati Reds poses for a photo during Spring Training Photo day on February 18, 2009 at the Cincinnati Reds training facility in Sarasota, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

I know the few weeks in spring training is insufficient time to make a detailed performance rating, but if not now, when?

Yonder Alonso is not striking fear in the Reds opponents, or his competitors at his prospective position(s).

Through games of Thursday night, Alonso is batting .125/.125/.188. That is well below any Mendoza line that has ever been drawn. He has scored one run with no RBI at all. His strikeouts are again a point of concern (as well as it is with other Reds youngsters). He has whiffed on five of 16 AB.

Joey Votto has first base locked up because of his two excellent years with the Reds. Any talk of putting Alonso at another position is growing dimmer by the game.

There is such a fusion of power and speed in left field that Jonny Gomes would be holding the high cards at the moment. He belted his team high third homer last night, a two-run shot that coupled with a single raised his cactus league average to .333/.333/.741.

Another mention made earlier by the Reds was to try Alonso at third base. Scott Rolen is going to be in the opening day lineup, barring an injury, which with him is always a heartbeat away.

Juan Fransisco would look like the heir-apparent when (not if) Rolen has to climb up on the shelf. He is currently batting .286/.318/.619, with 2 HR 4 RBI and 4 R.

Experiments are being done with Francisco in left field, but again, the number of applicants there makes you wonder why we would want to train Francisco while with the mother ship. After all, that is what our farm squads are for, yes?

Right field would be considered Jay Bruce 's territory, so Alonso wouldn't be a true candidate their either.

It looks to me like Alonso should be sent down to Louisville to continue his seasoning, with maybe a trip back up if Votto goes down, or just to take another look at him later.

He may be pressing too hard to win the favor of management, but for whatever reason, he is a far cry at this juncture, from what his supporters expected.  Too much praise on one individual who
has not even competed at the AAA level yet.

Again, a couple handfuls of games is a rough way to gauge someone, but that is all we have in the spring.

He enjoyed an outstanding college career with the Miami Hurricanes , but his minor league work has been good but not spectacular by any means.

This article also appears at A Sports Moment