It was a long month of April for Reds fans. Ups, downs, injuries, callups, wins, losses…we witnessed just about everything in the first month of the 2013 season. The Reds, despite an offense that is either very hot or very cold, are at a decent spot in the standings. Taking 15 games from the schedule we were dealt is a nice way to start the season. Not fantastic, but not bad either. It shows that, at the very least, the Reds aren’t afraid of talented, superstar-laden teams.
Highlights from April include the Reds debut of Shin-Soo Choo, who might as well have been playing in a Reds jersey for a decade with how much he’s already garnered the love of the fans. He went through a lengthy streak of getting on base in every game, which was pretty much solely responsible for him winning over the fans so quickly. He’s not the best defensively, but I think he’s doing a lot better than a lot of people thought he would going into the season. His defensive game isn’t even close to detracting enough overall value to make him a mistake on the Reds behalf.
Another storyline was the titanic struggle for the Reds’ big boys. Former NL MVP Joey Votto got things going (power-wise, at least) towards the end of the month, but Jay ‘Terrible Tweet” Bruce ended April with only one home run. It’s obvious to see that he’s struggling at the plate, and as one BRM writer put it, he’s filling in for Drew Stubbs quite nicely.
And of course, the injuries. We saw Ryan Ludwick go down in the third inning of the season, Johnny Cueto went down for the second time in a very short stretch of games, and Ryan Hanigan, Chris Heisey, Sean Marshall, Sam LeCure and Manny Parra have all seen their fair share of bumps and bruises. Hopefully the injury bug has passed through Cincinnati for the most part this season, as the team can’t handle much more of this.
And now, the Reds Power Rankings for April. I’ve asked BlogRedMachine writer Josh Bresser and Senior Editor Steve Engbloom to join me in ranking the Reds’ 25 man roster 1-25 based on their play and off-field antics through April. Let’s see how things ended up:
|1. Joey Votto||1||1||1|
|2. Shin-Soo Choo||2||2||3|
|3. Mat Latos||3||3||2|
|4. Brandon Phillips||5||4||4|
|5. Aroldis Chapman||4||5||5|
|6. Todd Frazier||6||6||6|
|7. Homer Bailey||7||9||7|
|8. Tony Cingrani||9||10||8|
|9. Jay Bruce||8||8||12|
|10. Sean Marshall||10||7||17|
|11. Zach Cozart||11||12||9|
|12. Devin Mesoraco||12||11||11|
|13. Bronson Arroyo||14||13||14|
|14. Sam LeCure||13||15||13|
|15. Xavier Paul||16||17||10|
|16. Mike Leake||17||16||15|
|17. Jonathan Broxton||15||14||25|
|18. JJ Hoover||18||18||22|
|19. Jack Hannahan||20||21||16|
|20. Alfredo Simon||19||19||24|
|21. Derrick Robinson||21||22||18|
|22. Logan Ondrusek||23||20||21|
|23. Cesar Izturis||22||23||19|
|24. Corky Miller||25||25||20|
|25. Donald Lutz||24||24||23|
As you can see, early reports from the season have each of us favoring certain players over others. With the exception of Joey Votto at 1 and Todd Frazier at 6, BRM writers disagreed across the board. Not by much, mind you, but it just goes to show how early statistics and showings can have different weight in different writers minds.
It’s clear that Jay Bruce took some heat from everyone for his rant on Twitter. One of the great things about this Reds team is that they’re low-drama. With the exception of the BP situation in St. Louis, this team hasn’t had anything for the press to talk about except their play on the field. That all changed with a couple of tweets from the Beaumont Bomber. The tweets weren’t terrible, but it’s telling that the player struggling perhaps the most on the roster was the one who tweeted them out. Just a thought.
Rank your top 25 Reds Players in the comments below!