Thursday, August 16, 2012

Cueto rises to the top of the Reds player power rankings

Halt the Twitter panic train! The Reds are currently rolling on a five-game winning streak and have increased their lead in the Central division to a season-high seven games over the Pirates and the Cardinals. That’s the biggest division lead for any team. Did I mention that they will still get Joey Votto back?

Johnny Cueto overtook Votto for the top spot this week. You can blame me (see below). There were not a whole lot of huge jumps or falls. We had some different voters this week than last which was most advantageous to Zack Cozart who went from 15 to 11. Homer Bailey probably had the most notable “slide” from 10 to 13.

It’s about lunch time and I know you’re hungry for some player power rankings. Enjoy!

1. Johnny Cueto
Last week: 2; How we voted: High-1 Low-2
The Dominican right-hander lowered his ERA to 2.45 after tossing eight shutout innings in a victory over the Cubs on Sunday. He continues to build a strong resume for Cy Young Award consideration. -Jimmi

2. Brandon Phillips
Last week: 3; High-2 Low-3
Phillips took over the three-hole when Votto went down and has been the leader of this team with his bat and with his glove. He hit .360 (9-25) with three doubles, an RBI, and five runs over the last week. -Jesse

3. Joey Votto
Last week: 1; High-1 Low-7
7? I’ll take the blame for this one because everyone else voted Votto number one. When he’s on the field there’s no question he is the best player on the team, but he hasn’t been on a field for a game in exactly a month and there’s been a whole cast of characters who have stepped up to lead the Reds to a 21-8 record in his absence. I can’t wait for his triumphant return. -Jesse

4. Aroldis Chapman
Last week: 3; High-3 Low-4
Chappy earned a save in all three of his appearances this past week and didn't allow a single run in any of them. In fact, it's been nearly two months spanning 22 outings since he last allowed one (June 24th vs MIN). -Jimmi

5. Todd Frazier
Last week: 5; High-4 Low-5
Yes, I want Votto back, but no, I don’t want to see Todd sit. Where will Dusty play him? We need his at-bats! -Sara

6. Ryan Ludwick
Last week: 5; High-5 Low-6
Hey, BROTHER! Ludwick is well on his way to garnering NL Comeback Player of the Year honors if he keeps hitting at the rate he has since the All-Star Break (.327). His 21 dingers and 63 RBI for 2012 aren't too shabby either. -Jimmi

7. Mat Latos
Last week: 7; High-6 Low-7
In nine of his last 10 games, Latos has looked like the ace for whom the Reds though they had traded. A seven-inning scoreless start on Tuesday against the Mets was one of them. -Jesse

8. Jay Bruce
Last week: 8; High-8 Low-9
When his bat is hot, watch out! The Mets found that out the hard way when he hit a three-run walk-off homer against them Tuesday. He’s currently on a three-game homer streak. -Sara/Jesse

9. Ryan Hanigan
Last week: 9; High-9 Low-12
He’s handled his pitchers brilliantly. He’s hitting .556 (5-9) with three walks over the last seven days. I dare you to try and steal a base on him. -Jesse

10. Bronson Arroyo
Last week: 11; High-9 Low-15
August hasn’t been too kind to him so far with that 5.12 ERA. He did throw eight innings of two-run baseball against the Cubs this past week though. -Sara

11. Zack Cozart
Last week: 15; High-10 Low-14
Cozart benefited from some voter changes this week. He did collect four doubles, a home run, two RBI, and two runs scored over the last week though. -Jesse

12. Drew Stubbs
Last week: 12; High-11 Low-13
Jimmi calls Stubbs the X-factor for the Reds and it’s hard to argue. When he plays well, the Reds win a lot of ball games. In the Reds’ current five-game winning streak he hasn’t hit that well, but he has scored a run in four of them and the other one was the Bruce walk-off. -Jesse

13. Homer Bailey
Last week: 10; High-10 Low-17
Bailey didn't pitch exceptionally well last Friday (5.2 IP, 9 H, 4 ER), but he lucked out and received plenty of run support to set a new career-high in wins (10) nonetheless. -Jimmi

14. Mike Leake
Last week: 16; High-12 Low-14
Leake staked his claim to the current pitching resurgence with a complete game, one-run effort against the Mets last night. -Jesse

15. Scott Rolen
Last week: 12; High-9 Low-16
With no complaints, no excuses, he comes back and plays hard. -Sara

16. Sean Marshall
Last week: 12; High-15 Low-19
The former Cub was knocked around by his old team over the weekend. He allowed three runs in two appearances (1.1 IP) in Chicago, and took the loss in one of them to drop his record to 4-4. -Jimmi

17. Alfredo Simon
Last week: 17; High-15 Low-19
Simon says he hasn't pitched since August 5th. It's true, he hasn't. But he still owns a very tidy 2.27 ERA in the 25 other games he's pitched in for Cincy. -Jimmi

18. Jose Arredondo
Last week: 18; High-17 Low-20
He hasn't allowed a run in any of his six appearances in August (4.0 IP), and is sporting a 5-2 record and 2.51 ERA for the season. He's developed into a go-to guy for Dusty Baker in the middle innings. -Jimmi

18. Devin Mesoraco
Last week: 22; High-16 Low-22
Mez, another benefactor of voter changes, has contributed exactly one hit (single) to the team since July 25th. He's dealt with concussion-like symptoms and a possible suspension since then as well. Eek. -Jimmi

20. Xavier Paul
Last week: 23; High-14 Low-23
He got one very friendly vote, perhaps due to the fact that he’s been one of the best pinch-hitters in the league and compared to most of Cincinnati’s bench he’s practically been a superstar. -Jesse

21. Chris Heisey
Last week: 18; High-20 Low-21
With Ludwick swinging a hot stick from left field, Heisey has become a forgotten man it seems. He played in only one game in the last week going 1-for-4 with a double and a run. -Jesse

22. Sam LeCure
Last week: 20; High-18 Low-23
He’s got a 0.79 ERA in 11.1 innings since the All-Star break, but is now being bothered by some inflammation in his shoulder. Dusty will be keeping close tabs on him. Might he be a prime DL candidate when a decision has to be made about Nick Masset near the end of August? -Jesse

23. Logan Ondrusek
Last week: 21; High-21 Low-24
Ondrusek gave up an earned run in his only appearance last week (0.2 IP). He’s probably better suited for the middle innings with good rest, rather than the eighth. -Jesse

24. Wilson Valdez
Last week: 23; High-22 Low-25
Umm, when is Joey Votto returning back to the lineup again? Valdez squeaked out two hits in 17 at-bats last week for a grand old average of .118. Don't sweat it though. He's batting a whopping .211 overall. -Jimmi

25. Miguel Cairo
Last week: NR; High-24 Low-NR
If nothing else, he has been there to fill in while Votto has been out and he’s been able to hang on this team with his .156 batting average. In past years, he has been important to the Reds, but in reality, he’s just not that good anymore. -Jesse

Also receiving votes (number of votes): Jonathan Broxton (1)

*This week’s rankings were comprised with input from Jimmi, Sara, and me. You can take out your frustrations with us on Twitter or in the comments if you like.

1 comment:

Jimmi said...

I'm really enjoying putting these together. It's fun to see how everyone justifies their rankings although most of the players are pretty much interchangeable if you ask me. I'm still tempted to plug in J.J. Hoover over Cairo and Valdez for the 18 games he pitched in earlier in the season. :)