It is easy to sit back in my computer chair and be a cynic, to be critical of Dusty Baker, to wring my hands and say woe is me. It would be easy and possibly cathartic. But tonight I am not going to do that.
In the last few days I have talked about a number of subjects weighing on my mind and how they have affected Reds performance. I mentioned the lineup but today though I would love to see Phillips back in the two hole, I got the lineup I wanted. I discussed Inter-League play but if you take the Reds out of the equation the NL and AL each won 12 games, so the AL has the lead again only in the wake of the Indians sweep. I have tweeted about Gomes ad nauseam.
So what is the problem and more importantly what is the solution?
The bottom line is the Reds lack confidence. When they met the Cardinals who have haunted the Reds for a few years, the team played with confidence. They faced adversity and found triumph. They met the Cubs and allowed them to beat themselves. In Pittsburgh they looked in the mirror and found it a bit unsettling to see their own image. But in Cleveland they found something not that familiar and not that common. The found a team that is playing with confidence. On paper the Reds appear to be the better team, they have the pedigree for victory. The question is do they have the fire in the belly, the surety in their heart, that they should be victorious. I fully expect that back in GABP we will see a different Indians team come to town. A good team but not the team we faced this afternoon. The Indians are at .500 on the road while losing only 4 at home. FOUR!
The Reds do need a lot of things on paper. An Ace who gets outs, an offense that produces runs, and lately even a defense to keep them in the game. This team is not that different from the 2010 playoff team but they need the confidence they had last year to go on the road with out pressing and just win. Tomorrow they face another confident team who swept them last year in Philadelphia. this could easily become a 9 game losing streak or a winning streak could begin. The Reds are a good team but right now, they just need a little of our support. Win, lose or draw they have mine and I know they can win. Here is hoping that they do it.
Follow me on Twitter @JohnHeitz