Wednesday, September 7, 2016

MLB Week 22 – The Agony of Defeat

Image result for mr. redlegs losing

by: Dan Howard
Staff Writer

Will the Reds ever beat the Mets again in my lifetime?

With the 6 – 3 loss on Wednesday afternoon, Cincinnati has now dropped fourteen straight games against the Mets. Since the pivotal Reds/Mets series on September 23 – 25, 2013, Cincinnati has lost 19 of 21 to New York. It seemed the Reds gave up after winning the first game of the series 3 – 2 in ten innings, their 90th win of 2013. The win along with the division leader St. Louis Cardinals 4 – 3 win against the Washington Nationals allowed both the Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates to clinch Wild Card spots. Former Reds outfielder Ryan Ludwick voiced his displeasure with the fans about lacking passion during the series in which I replied;

“So, Ryan Ludwick, it’s the fans fault that the Reds dropped two of three to the Mets? You guys couldn’t hit water if you fell out of a boat, especially with runners in scoring position (4 for 29 in the series) and somehow it’s the fans fault? Look, I totally understand the momentum gained with a boisterous crowd, but give us something to cheer about, please. All during the Mets series y’all basically went through the motions, in fact, despite the numerous protests to the contrary, I believe you thought that all you’d need to do is show up and the Mets would just wilt in your greatness. In other words, you looked past the Mets. What really bugged me was the way the Reds laid down in the bottom of the ninth on Wednesday’s game. LaTroy Hawkins, who’s like 96 years old, give or take a few years, placed his walker to the side of the mound, took a couple of puffs from his oxygen tank and promptly retired the side in order. And that’s the fans fault? Bob Castellini may sign his name to your checks, but it’s those fans, you know, the ones who came out in record numbers this season, which pays your salary. Remember that.” (News and Notes from MLB Week 26 dated September 26, 2013)

Last Reds win versus the New York Mets was on September 6, 2014, a 2 – 1 victory at Great American Ball Park.

Useless Trivia; Cincinnati lost their final six games of 2013, including the Wild Card playoff game at Pittsburgh.

At least this group of Reds players don’t seem to wilt at the greatness of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Prior to our Redlegs Review podcast, Jack Ward asked me what I thought of Iribarren, I said it was a classical jazz song from Big Band trumpeter Harry James. The silence was deafening. “Uh, Dan, it’s not Ciribirbin, it’s Iribarren, as in Hernan Iribarren.” On Tuesday night, Iribarren became the first Reds player since Todd Frazier in 2012 to collect two pinch hit triples.

Iribarren became the first Louisville Bats player to win the International League batting title. Iribarren hit .327 in 101 games. From July 1, he hit a scorching .343 through the remainder of the 2016 season, including .414 during his last 15 appearances. Iribarren also added a fourteen and a fifteen game hitting streak to his 2016 season. With the seeming ineptitude of Reds management, I’m surprised he’s even with the big club.

Always the consummate professional, Jack Ward performed this week’s podcast with the knowledge of his beloved Kentucky Wildcats losing this past Saturday to the “Weak Sisters of the Poor”, a.k.a. Southern Mississippi.

Since being called up on August 20, Jose Peraza is leading all Major League players with a .484 batting average (30 for 62, six doubles, one homer, eight RBI’s, and four stolen bases). His batting average includes the four hits in five at-bats during Wednesday afternoon loss to the Mets.

Every week it seems we’ve touted the hot hitting Joey Votto has enjoyed since June 1, trailing Houston’s Jose Altuve for most of the last three months. Not anymore, Votto now leads all of baseball with a .375 batting average, and a .496 on-base percentage. From the All Star break Votto is leading MLB in hitting, .422, on base percentage, .520, and leads the National League with a .665 slugging percentage.

More Useless Trivia; from his debut on September 4, 2007, Joey Votto leads Major League Baseball in on-base percentage, .424, and walks with 853. Only Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera has a better batting average (.325) than Votto (.311). Votto is trying to lead the National League in walks and on-base percentage combined for the fifth time in his nine-year career.

40 Years Ago; Saturday Sept. 11, 1976, Reds trail the San Francisco Giants 5 – 1 after five innings at Candlestick Park. Reds rally scoring three runs in the sixth, on RBI singles by Tony Perez, and Bill Plummer. Reds cap comeback with a three run eight, thanks to a bases clearing double by Dave Concepcion. A Tony Perez solo home run in the ninth provided Cincinnati an 8 – 5 win. The win allowed the Reds to remain eleven games up in the National League West Division and reduced their Magic Number to win the division to twelve.

Have a blessed week. GO BUCKEYES!!!!

Dan Howard


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