Cincinnati Reds look a lot like themselves from 2017

(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images)
(Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images) /

As spring training wears on, the Cincinnati Reds don’t much different than last year.

The Cincinnati Reds were a bad team in 2017.  They had inconsistent pitching and a streaking offense.  That team is in spring training now.

Four of the season pitchers that have started a game this spring for the Reds have an ERA over 5.00.  Of course, the four that have the high ERAs are the four that just a few seasons ago were seen as work horses.  Those are Anthony DeSclafani, Homer Bailey, Michael Lorenzen, and Robert Stephenson

The three that look like they belong in a major league rotation are Brandon Finnegan, Luis Castillo, and Sal Romano.  Finnegan has only made one start this spring. Castillo and Romano look like starters for the front end of the rotation.

The bullpen is in a similar situation.  Several of the anchors in the bullpen haven’t been as good as advertised.  Those that have excelled have fringe roles.

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The most noticeable shortcoming has been with the projected lefty relievers.  Both Wandy Peralta and veteran non-roster invitee Oliver Perez have ERAs over ten.  Cody Reed has an ERA of 8.44 himself.

The Reds free agent signees, Jared Hughes, who came over from the Milwaukee Brewers, and David Hernandez, who came over from the Los Angeles Angels, both have ERAs at or under 3.00.  Zack Weiss who was added to the forty man roster during the off-season has yet to give up a run.  He may force his way onto the big league roster.

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The Cincinnati Reds offense hasn’t been much better in its own right.

Right fielder Scott Schebler has been tearing the cover off of the ball.  He is batting .579 over the first eight games this spring. Catcher Tucker Barnhart and outfielder Jesse Winker are both batting over .300.

Unfortunately, those are all of the players exceeding expectations in the line-up.  Third baseman Eugenio Suarez and Scooter Gennett are both batting .278 this spring. They also each have one home run.

The one disappointment that was completely predictable was the non-start of center fielder Billy Hamilton.  Half way through spring training, Hamilton doesn’t even have a single hit, instead of getting off to a hot start. However, he has four walks in twenty plate appearances for an OBP of .200.

Next: Reds sign Oliver Perez

The Reds still look like the same team they did at the end of last year.  They have power pitchers that are ineffective and also a lead-off hitter that can’t get on base.  Hopefully, this is the last spring that the Reds build a team filled with pessimism instead of optimism.