Monday, May 30, 2016

Duvall, Cozart Lone Bright Spots for Lackluster Reds

Zack Cozart 20130625.jpg

by: Jack Ward
Staff Writer

The Reds are 4-18 on the road and have to go to Colorado where they of late haven’t played too well. Sad to say but this Reds team is shaping up to be one of the worst baseball teams I have ever seen. They can’t hit, they can’t field, they can’t pitch. I know every team goes through bad stretches, but this doesn’t feel like a bad stretch. It feels like a really bad team. I know they have Jay Bruce, Brandon Phillips, Joey Votto as the nucleus, and that is great. But some really bad teams have had great players. Remember 1987 MVP for the last place Cubs, Andre Dawson? Steve Carlton won 27 games for the 59 win Phillies in 1972. Bruce, and Phillips are not great but pretty good. Bruce is on a pace to drive in 90 runs and hit 25-30 home runs. Phillips is on a pace to hit 18 home runs and drive in 70 runs. That’s a good year for any second baseman.

Joey Votto on the other hand is off to the worst start of his career. I’m starting to get concerned about him. I can’t imagine Joey Votto hitting .207 at the end of May! But it’s happening. It’s probably just one of those slumps that can last a whole season sometimes. Many great players have had off seasons.

The bright spots for the Reds? Zack Cozart? He has been very good but we kind of expected this of him. Hmm….I think Adam Duvall is the real bright spot for the Reds: 11 home runs, 26 RBI’s. 45 hits, 47 Strikeouts. He reminds me of another Adam….Adam Dunn. Lots of power, lots of strikeouts but lots of production. Adam Duvall is hitting .267, which is better than Adam Dunn’s .247 career average for the Reds. And Duvall is a better fielder than Adam Dunn. I like Adam Duvall very much.

If you think about it aside from Cozart, Bruce, Duvall and Phillips, just about everything that could go wrong with this team has.

Case in point. The Reds are next to last in fielding percentage and second in errors in the National League. This is shocking to me. This team has always defended well over the years.

The bullpen has been a disaster. Last in ERA. First in Home Runs allowed. Last in bullpen ERA at 6.45! More than two runs a game worse than the next worst team the Atlanta Braves. The starting pitching has just one possible bright spot, Dan Straley. But even he hasn’t been an ace.

The Reds are only hitting .228 as a team. That’s just barely better than the woeful San Diego Padres. The Reds needed to hit in order to keep the pressure off them somewhat. They haven’t done that. Surprisingly the Reds are second in hitting with runners in scoring position at .282. But before you raise your eyebrows the Reds are last in At Bats with runners in scoring position.

Eugenio Suarez has been really struggling. I believe he will iron out his problems. I still have hope that Billy Hamilton will be the lead-off man they need.

Surely it can only get better, can’t it? Can it get any worse? I just don’t know. Right now the Reds are in deep do-do.

Until next time,

No comments: