Thursday, April 19, 2012

10 reasons not to press panic button

There's no denying that the Redlegs have been performing below expectations so far. However, the number of fans and pundits already jumping off the bandwagon are a bit alarming, in my opinion. Yes, the offense has been woeful majority of the time, and yes the pitching has been shaky at spots as well, but there's still a ton of baseball left to be played in 2012.

With that in mind, here are 10 legitimate reasons not to freak out just yet:

* 12 of their next 15 games come against teams who had losing records in 2011 -- (6 w/CHC, 3 w/HOU, 3 w/PIT). Nine of those games are at home.
A series vs the Astros could be just
what the doctor ordered for the Reds

* Five of their losses have come by three runs or less.

* Every position player on the team is currently hitting below their career averages, with the exception of rookies Zack Cozart and Devin Mesoraco. Don't expect that trend to continue as the hitters eventually get their timing down.

* Don't be overly concerned with Mat Latos' early season struggles. He has a history of being a slow starter throughout his short MLB career (1-8, 6.28 ERA, 1.535 WHIP in March/April). The 24-year old gets much more effective as the season wears on.

* The 2010 Reds also started the year 5-8. They went on to post a 91-71 record, win the NL Central, and advance to the playoffs for the first time in fifteen years.

* The defense has been solid. They've committed just four errors all season long. That's the fewest of any team in the National League. The good thing about great defense? It always travels and never takes a night off.

* They've proved they can play small ball. That's evidenced by being second in the majors with 11 sacrifices.

* Joey Votto. 'Nuff said.

* Cincinnati has played the second-hardest schedule up to this point, according to And fourth-hardest according to (.597). They have yet to play a game against an opponent not prognosticated to make the playoffs. That'll change in the coming weeks, obviously.

* They still have 149 (92%) regular season games left to play...plenty of time to right the ship...and then some.

The moral of this post? BELIEVE! The MLB season is a long one. There will be periods of ups and there will be periods of downs, but it's much too early to write this team off just yet. Hang tight and let's allow this thing to play out.

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