Here we are at the halfway point in the MLB season, and the Reds find themselves in a position that many fans are not happy with. Cincinnati enters the All-Star break with a 45-47 record which lands them in 4th place in the National League Central trailing the Brewers and Cardinals by 4 games. Judging from the general opinion of Reds fans you would think this team is sitting in last place with no chance of winning the division. That simply is not the case. The fans screaming to “Fire Dusty!” or “Trade Cordero” need to relax. From the surface it appears the Reds are not in the best shape heading into the second half, but a deeper look into the first half reveals things are not as bad as they seem.
13-21. The Reds have already lost an astonishing 21 1-run games. To put that in perspective, the average record for all teams in 1-run games is 15-14. The Reds have 7 more losses than the average which is more of a sign of bad luck then bad play. On a yearly average, most teams go around 20-20 in 1-run games so the Reds have already done their fair share of losing those type of games. Simply applying the law of averages one has to believe the Reds record in 1-run games will gravitate more towards the .500 mark [which is exactly what they were last year in these type of games, 27-27] rather than continue south. Personally this team has had one of the most frustrating halves of baseball I have watched in years. I couldn’t count on 2 hands the numbers of times I found myself saying, “That was a game the Reds should have won.” There is absolutely no chance the team continues to falter at the end of the games and continues losing 1 run games.
One of the few things going right for the Reds is the mediocrity of the division. Sure they are in 4th place, but the fact they are only sitting 4 games out while being 2 games under .500 is a blessing in disguise. All it will take to get back in the hunt will be ripping off a 7 or 8 game winning streak or win 13 out of 15 at some point. Even though the team has shown no signs of doing that in the first half, all it takes is one hot streak and we will be right back in the hunt. Hopefully the front office realizes the same thing and does not decide to make any drastic changes to the team. Despite what some fans may believe, this team does need to make any huge moves [minus acquiring an Ace-type pitcher, but there aren’t any on the market]. The hole at SS seems to have been filled with Cozart. He has gotten a hit in every game since being called up, and has looked solid in the field. Sure it is a small sample but there is no reason to believe he won’t keep it up given his AAA stats. The pitching should come around, and the hitting is already there it just needs to be more timely. We all know the talent is here, now lets hope they can all get it going at once and take this division again. Let’s not forget, we ARE the reigning division champions –