Reds vs. Brewers: Pitching preview, prediction, and more

CINCINNATI, OHIO - MAY 23: Tyler Stephenson #37 of the Cincinnati Reds tags out Luis Urias #2 of the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - MAY 23: Tyler Stephenson #37 of the Cincinnati Reds tags out Luis Urias #2 of the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Wade Miley #22 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during a game.
CINCINNATI, OHIO – JULY 04: Wade Miley #22 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during a game. (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /

An argument can be made the Reds have the best staff in the NL.

Sure the Mets have Jacob deGrom. Milwaukee has Burnes, Peralta, and Woodruff, but one through five, the Cincinnati Reds have the best rotation in the senior circuit. Don’t take my word for it.  The numbers don’t lie.

Cincinnati’s 5.5 bWAR is tops among all NL staffs, and it’s really not that close. Their closest competitors are the Brewers and Philadelphia Phillies’ rotations, both with a 4.7 bWAR rate. As a matter of fact, Wade Miley has been the best left-hander in the senior circuit this year.

The Cajun is not only the author of a no-hitter this season; his 3.5 bWAR ranks fifth in the National League and is tops among all southpaws in the NL. Barring a second-half collapse, Miley is on pace to easily eclipse his career-high 3.1 bWAR reached during his lone All-Star season of 2012 as a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Right-handers Tyler Mahle and Sonny Gray also rank among the top 25 in bWAR in the National League. Even as bad as Luis Castillo was during the first two months of the season, he’s managed to post a positive 0.7 bWAR.

Give pitching coach Derek Johnson a ton of credit.   Despite the loss of Cy Young Award winner Trevor Bauer, he’s coaxed extraordinary performances out of a Reds rotation that at times has featured two rookies in Vladimir Gutierrez and Tony Santillan, as well as journeymen Jose De Leon and Jeff Hoffman.

Reds vs. Brewers: Prediction

It’s been a long time since the Reds were entertaining realistic playoff aspirations at the All-Star break, but here we are. Granted, the Reds have received incredible performances from the likes of Nick Castellanos, Jonathan India, and Jesse Winker. Still, if it wasn’t for Gabe Kapler in San Francisco, David Bell should be the unanimous choice for the NL Manager of the Year.

3 trade proposals to bring Story to the Reds. Next

How do the Redlegs enter the All-Star break? Unfortunately, exactly where they sit today, which is six games behind the Brewers as they split the four-game set in Milwaukee. But, don’t fret Reds Country.  We’ll see the Beer Makers coming out of the All-Star break as the Redlegs make their charge for their first division crown since the 2012 season.