The Reds currently sit at 27-32 and are 6.5 games out of the NL Central and another 5 back in the Wild Card. They’re coming off a very disappointing home stand, where they went 3-4 when they could have easily (and should have) gone 5-2 at the very worst. The Reds season has been a little disappointing, but the one word to describe it is inconsistent.
Inconsistency is something that drives me crazy and that’s the Reds for you. One day their offense can score 7+ runs but the following games they are either shut out or score very few. In fact, after scoring 9 runs in the first 4 innings against Washington this weekend, the Reds scored only three more against much worse pitching than Patrick Corbin. The Reds pitching staff has done more than their fair share and they currently have fourth best pitching with a cumulative 3.49 ERA which ranks second in the NL behind the Dodgers. Their defense is the best in the NL but yet they still stand at the bottom of the NL Central. In order to improve, they need consistency and it starts at the top.
I’ve written about David Bell and how he needs to work on his discipline, but a major issue he has is consistency. Bell rarely has the same lineup which in a way works, but players tend to get out of a rhythm because of it. About the only two players that know where they are each and every day are Nick Senzel and Joey Votto and if you look, they both have been tearing it up recently and it has a been part to do with knowing exactly where they’ll be in the lineup and in the field. Now being a new manager I get trying to figure things out and moving people around, but we’re in June now… you just can’t do that. I believe in Bell but he needs to improve just like the roster.
It also doesn’t help when your franchise player (Joey Votto) started off the season so slow. Votto has turned it around completely, including having a multi-game hitstreak. Another thing, Nick Senzel has everything we expected plus some. While his outfield timing seems a little off here and there, he is hitting .267 and was a vital part of the Reds success in Chicago and against the Pirates earlier this week. Eugenio Suarez is playing his ass off right now and without him the Reds would be even further below .500 but it has been pretty nice to see him produce. All this is happening when seemingly the rest of the team is in sort of a slump, including Winker and Puig.
Now the Reds can easily turn this around. Their pitching has been lethal this season and their hitting just needs to be consistent. They can score 10 runs on any given day, but when they do they just go into hibernation the next two days. I’m not saying to fire the hitting coach, but maybe they need more individual work in that area. The Reds can and will make the playoffs, they just need consistency.
PS…Pitching Sonny Gray in pinstripes, at home, was probably the worst decision ever made. It definitely brought back some New York memories for the kid and it showed.