The Reds dropped another today, their second loss in seventeen hours to the Giants. In that 17-hour span, the Redlegs were outscored 9-3, after winning an 8-3 decision on Tuesday night. This marks the first time in five years that the Giants have won a series in Cincinnati.
What is it with these Reds? Why must they be so up and down when it comes to scoring? 8 of 11 runs all came in one game, so it’s no wonder that that’s the only game Cincinnati won in the series. I love our strong pitching staff, it gives the Reds a distinct advantage over many other teams. But it seems having so much money tied up in a stellar pitching staff has already revealed its greatest drawback: less than adequate money being invested in hitting.
As Cincinnati is now 28th (3rd-worst) in runs, 24th-best batting average, and the holders of the 26th-best on-base percentage, it certainly seems like we’ll see more of what we saw in the last two games of the Giants series. It’s always nice to see Cincinnati put it all together and get the bats swinging. But that four-game winning streak might as well be a mirage as far as I’m concerned. They cannot continue to simply hope for huge offensive outbursts. They need to CREATE these outbursts.
The time to act is now. Actually, the time to act was last month; other teams have already moved the players that do not fit their systems for the most part. But Cincinnati can still make moves and improve their position. I love our team, and in a perfect world, the Reds could keep everyone and suddenly magically get hot and win a World Series – Disney movie-style.
But the world is not perfect, this is not a Disney movie, and three wins against the D’backs and one eight-run outburst is not enough to put together a run at a title. There are a lot of pieces to this team that other teams would love to have. It may be time to consider what we can build here in Cincinnati. We already have a strong core, I’m certainly not suggesting a total tear-down. But a shake-up involving a couple players would go a long way for this team, beyond just those who are traded.
Management, show us you’re committed to making this team a winner. Hold these players accountable, and don’t let them settle for three and four-hit, one run games anymore. This is unacceptable to me, it should be to Walt Jocketty too. We can’t even dominate at home these days (13-14 at Great American Ballpark in 2014).
But, I digress.
Tomorrow, the Reds will host the Philadelphia Phillies in Game One of their three-game weekend series. Johnny Cueto (5-4, 1.68 ERA, TOP ERA in the Major Leagues; 92 strikeouts, 5th-most in baseball; 3.2 WAR, TOP WAR in MLB according to ESPN.com) will get the ball for Cincinnati. Up against Johnny Beisbol is three-time All-Star, Cole Hamels (1-3, 4.01 ERA).
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