Thursday, May 28, 2009

Get the Reds Out

-The Lebrons are on the brink tonight. The refs have tried to get them to the finals (see Lebron's bailout with .5 seconds left in game 4) but even sympathetic officials can't make Mo Williams stop sucking. I think Cleveland wins tonight then loses Saturday night. Even Stern can't make Cleveland beat Orlando 3 times in a row, especially given that it took a miracle shot for the series to even be continued past game 4. Too bad. I like watching LeBron run over and dominate.

Kobe and the Lakers got the Stern treatment last night. LA got 55 questionable calls and Denver got 1. At least one large market will make the finals. I guess The Rapist is not a bad second fiddle now that The Chosen One won't be there.

-I recently entered the twitter universe. You can follow me at I am an instant fan now that I found out how to use text messaging to send tweets.

-Hope everyone saw the Champions League final yesterday. Barcelona is the best team in the world and they proved it by dismantling Manchester United, the Yankees of soccer, 2-0. The game wasn't even that close as Barcelona dominated the final 80 minutes after Man U played well the first 10. The French put up a better fight against the blitzkrieg then Man U put up against Barcelona.

-I am delighted with the news coming out of Lexington, KY recently. First, the basketball team fails to make the tourny, then flames out in the NIT before the final four. They fire their coach and hire a highly controversial coach. Then, a star football player gets busted using performance enhancers and gets suspended for his final season. I am sure he just forgot to check with the trainer even though he was told 1,000 time to always check. Then yesterday came the big guns. Billy G sues them for the full buyout clause of 6 million dollars. Funny how when he was coaching, he had a contract. Now that they fired him, he didn't have one. He will probably get close to that amount in a settlement because UK has other fish to fry right now with its new coach. John Cheataperi's former team will probably lose its final four and 38 wins because Derrick Rose had the SAT taken for him and a friend got some free travel. This would be the second final four Caliperi has had to forfeit, making him the most decorated coach in that department. Congrats Cat fans, your coach finally has something over Pitino. I have a feeling this isn't a coinsidence. He will take down UK just like he took down UMass and Memphis. Couldn't happen to a better group of fans. What is the line, be careful what you wish for......

Off day thoughts

-Big sweep for the Reds. They are now 26-20, 1.5 games back of the Cards and .5 games back of second place Milwaukee. Today is an off day before 3 games at Miller Park and 4 at Inbev Stadium. HUGE TRIP. I like Jay Bruce's confidence when he said "We’re coming home in first." I am not so optomistic until we make sure Harang is alright after Dusty's stat stuffing move to send him out after a 2 hour delay and Edinson returns healthy and is not overworked. I know I will be watching most of the next 7 games, hoping the Reds continue the strong play.

-OK pick one for your All-Star 1B.
Player A-.360/.467/.632/1.099, 37 G, 10 2B, 8 HR, 33 RBI
Player B-.318/.450/.637/1.087, 46 G, 8 2B, 14 HR, 40 RBI

I like player A, some would like player B. Either way, it is a tossup.

Player A=Joey Votto
Player B=Albert Pujols

If the game were not in St. Louis, I think Joey would have a shot. Unfortunately, MLB will ensure Albert gets the start in his home park. Hopefully Joey will get the backup job. The crazy Canuck deserves it.

-Johnny Cueto is currently #4 in ERA+ with a 194 and Aaron Harang is 13th with a 137. Who would have thought the Reds would have the best 1-2 punch in the NL Central? And Volquez isn't one of them. If he gets back to last year's form, they will have the best 1-2-3 in the entire NL. Would be nice to have come October.

-Non Reds post coming later....

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Oswalt once again

Reds killer Roy Oswalt(24-1 against he Reds) takes the mound tonight to stop the Reds streak. After a rough series against the Phillies last week, the Reds turned it around to win 3 of the past 4 games including taking the battle of Ohio against the Indians. Here is a quick roundup of how the season has gone and what to look forward to.

Record: The Reds are 24-20, 3rd place in the Central and 2.5 games behind the Brewers for first place. They are +7 in run differential which puts their record right about what you would expect a team with that difference to be. Two games remain against the 'Stros before a pivital 10 game stretch, 3 in Mil, 4 in STL, and 3 at home against the Cubs. Should be a fun few weeks to see how the team will handle the big strech of games, most in tough surroundings.

Batting: Joey Votto is leading the NL in batting average. That includes everyone, Ty Cobb Pujols and all. Jay Bruce has found his power stroke having already hit 12 homers. The rest of the team are hitting and getting on base, with Alex Gonzalez the only regular player who has an OBP under .335. He started awful but has begun to find his swing which could be a big lift. The bench is also hitting, with Nix, Gomes, and Rosales all hitting well in limited roles. Phillips learning to take a pitch has helped improve his OPS+ to 110. Other then the hole at SS and lack of power at 3B(.329 slg) and LF(.331 slg), the bats have done better then expected. The new acquisitions have been doing very well with Hernandez having a .295/.363/.388 and 94 OPS+ and Taveras .274/.335/.348 and 77 OPS+. Taveras has stolen 12 bases while only being caught twice. Both have played above average defense and have proven to be solid everyday players.

Pitching: The strength coming into the season has held strong. The pitchers have all been solid, even with an injury sending Volquez to the DL and Arroyo having his annual blowup game. The Reds are 3rd in the NL in ERA+ and 5th in WHIP. The bullpen has only blown one save chance and, for the most part, kept the Reds in the game. Lincoln has been terrible all year and Burton has yet to find his form but the rest of the team has been great, including Masset, the pitcher acquired last season for Ken Griffey Jr.

Outlook: The Reds are in great position. They are 4 above .500 after 44 games, the best in a while. The upcoming 2 weeks will determine a lot. My prediction: Dusty finds a way to screw it up and the Reds fall back to .500. I hope I am wrong but I think I am right.

Monday, May 18, 2009

I'm Back

It has been a pretty eventful few weeks for me. Derby, marriage, honeymoon. You know how it goes. Now I am back after not following the Reds for a while. Nice to see them still competitive. I will have more analysis as the week goes on but suffice to say I am glad that the Reds are 3 games above .500 after 37 games with Philly, Cleveland, and Houston coming to town over the next 10 days. Above .500 is needed and 7-3 would be great. Be back soon...