PITTSBURGH -- The biggest man with the biggest bat -- Adam Dunn -- was long gone as the Reds came to work on Tuesday. For a team that's already struggling, the final 43 games without Dunn and Ken Griffey Jr. will be played with a large offensive void.
Dunn was traded to the Diamondbacks on Monday for Minor League pitcher Dallas Buck and two other players to be named. Griffey was traded on July 31 to the White Sox and the Reds responded by going 1-9 in the previous 10 games, including six losses in a row during that stretch.
"We obviously don't have a lot of pop in the lineup," Reds pitcher Bronson Arroyo said. "It doesn't mean we can't win ballgames. Yesterday, guys were sitting around [saying], 'we might not win another ballgame all year.' I was like, 'forget that, I'm winning five more. I don't care what the lineup looks like.' To me, I'm thinking about every fifth day. I don't care if a Little League team is playing behind me. I'm still going to throw and try to win every night."
Unlike the trade of Griffey, there weren't many dropped jaws inside the clubhouse when the trade of Dunn was announced. He was one of a dozen free agents that club had heading into the winter.
"It was inevitable," Arroyo said of the deal. "They weren't going to give him $100 million. He said he was looking for $120 million. They're not willing to go out on a limb that far."
"It's difficult but I also think we're all used to the game itself," reliever David Weathers said. "That's part of it. It's not very often during the course of a year you see two big names like that from one team get traded."
An inevitable question has to be, who might be next? With catcher David Ross being designated for assignment on Sunday, the Reds have already jettisoned three veterans.
"We don't have a whole bunch of veterans among the everyday lineup guys. Most of the veterans left here are pitchers," manager Dusty Baker said. "You're always hoping this is it. You never know. If you've been in this game long enough, you know you can't worry about something that's out of your control. It's easier said than done, of course."
The Major League season stops for no one, even departed big names. The last-place Reds were staring at a 52-67 record and a 19 1/2-game deficit in the National League Central before playing the Pirates on Tuesday.
Arroyo was optimistic the front office would attempt to regroup to improve the team, long term, instead of leaving large lineup holes.
"Obviously, we're starting to make moves that are telling us that they pretty much think the season is over," Arroyo said. "I figure they're looking for the future and definitely looking for some guys that they can sign in the offseason. I would expect them to go out and spend some money. We'll see."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.