It's amazing to me how quickly the tide can turn. Just two weeks ago the Reds were riding high, and people were feeling cautious optimism ... and that's all gone now.
For other people anyway. I still think the Reds are going to be in the hunt for at least the next couple of months. I never believed this was a playoff team, not without significant deal making by Wayne Krivsky, but I thought (and still think) that we're going to see a competitive baseball team well into August, and maybe into September. A year kind of like the Washington Nationals had last year.
This is the worst slump of the year, the worst losing streak, the worst hitting, etc. etc. but this too will pass, just like the hot start didn't last forever. If the Reds can win the next two games to take the series against Pittsburgh they'll be nine games over .500 again. And quite frankly, as long as they're over .500 I feel like I might as well be optimistic.
Quick game thoughts:
- Someone said something in the game thread about the weather affecting the Reds hitters, and I don't think it's a bad theory. It's been nothing but rain for the past week and a half, and that has to wear on a team after awhile. Anyone who's played baseball at any level, all the way down to Little League, has to know that it's harder to hit when it's wet. Once in a while isn't a big deal, but a couple of weeks of solid rain could easily lead to a slumping offense.
- Aaron Harang had a bad night, but he was still K'ing people left and right. His ERA isn't where it needs to be right now, but I think he's taken a big step forward this year.
- One of the catchers needs to go, because I think all three of these guys could be starting for more than a few major league teams. All three guys deserve to be playing more. Think about it, if the Reds were carrying two catchers then they could also have Chris Denorfia on the roster. Ryan Freel's been banged up, and we've had to see way too much of Quinton McCracken lately, because he's the only option when Junior doesn't play and Freel's hurting. This could be avoided if we didn't have three catchers on the roster. That being said, I'm becoming a bigger and bigger Dave Ross fan as the season goes on. If one of the catchers goes I hope it's not him. I also just want to point out that Jason LaRue is hitting .184 at the moment. I'm a little worried.
- Brian Shackelford really shouldn't be on a major league roster. When Kent Mercker comes back, he should be gone before Mike Burns. Not that I like Burns either.