Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A big batch of Reds news and notes

The Reds and Cardinals are set to tangle in a matinee affair today with the winner coming away with a series victory. It's a pivotal game for the Reds to not only keep pace in the standings, but to help gain some confidence in a place that has been mightily unkind to them over recent years. In the meantime, enjoy some Reds news and notes...

+ Tony Cingrani has been really impressive in his first three starts. So much so that the Reds may be forced to bump someone else in the rotation when ace Johnny Cueto returns from the disabled list. This Yahoo! columnist thinks Bronson Arroyo and Mike Leake should be worried.

+ Sports Illustrated writer Albert Chen delves into the Cingrani situation even more in this post. In brief, he argues that teams are still trying to find the right way to groom young pitchers.

+ Donald Lutz made history Monday night when he made his major league debut as a pinch-hitter. Lutz became the first German-developed player to ever play in the big leagues. The slugger was born in New York, but his family moved to Germany when he was a baby, and he spent most of his childhood and adolescence there before moving back to the United States.

+ It hasn't took very long for fans to realize how much of a steal acquiring Shin-Soo Choo was. This Yahoo! columnist breaks down just how good of a steal in this post.

+ Is Brandon Phillips a serious candidate for the National League MVP award? Well, this Bleacher Report writer seems to think so, and it's hard to make a case against him so far.

+ The Reds have been equally good at home this season as they have been bad on the road. Cincinnati boasts the most home wins (12) of any team in MLB, but their 3-9 record in away games is tied with Miami for the worst mark in MLB.

+ Entering play Wednesday, the Reds sat fourth in the division standings with a 15-13 overall record. However, only one game stands between them and the first place Cardinals (15-11). The Pirates and Brewers are sandwiched in between.

+ The Reds have played in 12 games decided by one-run in 2013. The only other team in MLB to play that many such games is Arizona. Both are 7-5.

+ The Reds are the only team in the division yet to have played a team from the National League West. By contrast, the Brewers have already played 15.

+ Despite their recent offensive woes, Cincinnati still ranks second in the league in runs scored (126). The suprising Rockies pace all others with 141.

+ The boys get a much-needed off day on Thursday before heading to Chicago for a three-game weekend set against the Cubs. Leake, Cingrani, and Mat Latos are scheduled to throw in that series.

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