The Reds start today as one of only two teams in baseball with a .600 winning percentage. The last time the Reds had a .600 winning percentage this late in the season was June 8, 2006, when they were 36-24. The last time the Reds had a 2-game lead in the NL Central was June 6, 2004. A win today and a loss by the Cardinals would give them their first 3-game lead since May 22, 2002. With the Reds heading into St. Louis for a 3-game set, it sure would be nice to know that no matter what happens there, the Reds will come out in at least a tie for first place.
But that's getting ahead of ourselves. The last two games have been ridiculously fun, but what I really want now is for the Reds to go undefeated this year against the Astros. After years of being dominated by Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman, it would be wonderful to use them as the stepping stone to a memorable season. So far, the Reds are 5-0 against Houston this season, but I'd love to see them take that all the way to 15-0 on the year. It's a little premature, but I'm all about setting goals this year!
Mike Leake already has more quality starts in his first 9 career games than any pitcher in Reds history. He's still trying to join Santo Alcala, Mel Queen, and Johnny Couch as the only Reds pitchers to win their first 5 decisions as a starter. Facing the struggling Astros will help, but Dusty Baker has put out his first getaway day lineup in a long time with Scott Rolen, Joey Votto, and Drew Stubbs all on the bench for today's game. The way things have been going lately, I fully expect this to work perfectly.
Go Reds! They're my favorite cigarette!