3 Reds players who need to have a better month in May

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Lodolo
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Lodolo / Dylan Buell/GettyImages
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If you're being honest, the Cincinnati Reds record of 12-16 is better than you thought it was going to be. That's especially true considering the gauntlet of talented teams the Reds faced to begin the season.

The Reds had seven games against the league-leading Pittsburgh Pirates, and also played against the likes of Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays, both of whom are leading their respective divisions.

But despite playing above expectations, Cincinnati's win-loss record is below .500. If the Reds are to have a winning month in May, a few players are going to need to turn things around. Which three Reds players need to have a better month of May?

1. Reds LHP Nick Lodolo needs to have a better month in May.

Now, it's not time to hit the panic button, but after seeing Nick Lodolo missing his spots in the previous few outings, it is cause of concern. The former first-round pick has struggled over his last three starts, and the Reds need better from Lodolo going forward.

Lodolo has made six starts on the season and currently owns a 6.16 ERA. David Bell removed Lodolo after barely throwing over 70 pitches in his last start. Lodolo did not allow a walk in that game, but the long ball did him in.

Lodolo has surrendered eight home runs already this season after allowing just 13 round trippers all of last season. It's a safe bet that Lodolo will break that, quite possibly before the end of May.

This team's success hinges on the performances of the starting pitchers. Graham Ashcraft has pitched well, while Hunter Greene has had his ups and downs. But Nick Lodolo hasn't looked right the past few times he's toed the rubber. His last three starts have seen Lodolo allow 17 runs on 26 hits. The southpaw needs to be better in May.