Cincinnati Reds: Five bold predictions for the MLB Playoffs

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 25: The Cincinnati Reds celebrate after clinching a wild card spot in the postseason. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 25: The Cincinnati Reds celebrate after clinching a wild card spot in the postseason. (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images) /
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Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds delivers a pitch in the first inning.
PITTSBURGH, PA – SEPTEMBER 04: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds delivers a pitch in the first inning. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /

1. Reds starter Trevor Bauer pitches a complete game shutout.

Trevor Bauer is likely to take home his first Cy Young Award. However, at the rate he’s pitching, this may be one of many by the time Bauer’s career is complete. Bauer’s conditioning and workout regimen is highly successful, as evidence from his 12-strikeout performance against the Milwaukee Brewers on just three-days rest.

Bauer will get the ball in Game 1 versus the Atlanta and will not have pitched in over a week. Look for Bauer to shake the rust off early. With a league leading team-OPS of .832, the Atlanta Braves have one of the best offenses in the league. However, they swing and miss a lot. The Braves are second in the NL in strikeouts (573), so look for Bauer to be sitting hitters down early and often.

Over his last three starts, Trevor Bauer has slowly increased his number of innings pitched. During his last outing against Milwaukee, Bauer went eight innings, allowing just four hits and one run. He walked just one while punching out 12. I’d look for Bauer to continue that level of dominance on Wednesday afternoon.

David Bell is turning to Bauer in order to set the tone. The right-hander has had no problem all season being the team’s workhorse and leader on the mound. If Bauer is hitting his spots early, it could be a long afternoon for the Braves. Look for Bauer to take the ball into the ninth inning and finish off Atlanta in Game 1.