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Weekday Mornings doing Sports on the Mike Miller Show.
Local Football & Basketball Play By Play on WIMA.
First Pitch show leading up to Reds Baseball on WIMA.
As the play-by-play voice of Bowling Green Football and Mens Basketball on the Falcon Sports Radio Network.
Formerly served as the play-by-play voice of the Columbus Destroyers of the Arena Football League.
The Reds have been frustrated to follow for most of this season. It seems as if there is so much wrong sometimes we forget that this team is 11 games over .500 and owns a 4.5 game lead for the second wild card spot in the National League.
I would submit that they should be in a much worse position. Consider all the issues they've had to overcome:
1. Ace basically out entire season.
2. Two best setup men missed long stretches, the lefty missing the whole season.
3. Starting leftfielder injured on Opening Day, still hasn't returned.
4. Two everyday players experiencing "sophomore slump".
5. Just played 26 of 35 games on the road.
6. Haven't "gotten hot" as a team. The longest winning streak of the season is six.
7. They've played 4 three city road trips already. Two of them featured stops in the Pacific Time Zone.
With all of that taken into consideration, many times a manager of a team under these circumstances might be in the discussion for Manager of the Year.
But, of course, accourding to a large number of Reds fans, every loss is Dusty Baker's fault and every win is in spite of his leadership.
I'm not here to "defend" Dusty. I also have some issues with his style and some of his strategy. However, Dusty bashers at least need to admit that this team has overcome a lot of things that collectively would have knocked down other squads.
Many, including me, feel this team lacks "fire" and that it is mainly a result of Baker's laid back managerial style.
Unlike others though, I'm willing to consier that his way of doing things may be a big factor in the team's ability to tread water and stay in he playoff picture despite the aformentioned issues.
While I don't think the Reds are all of the sudden going to start hitting in the clutch or become an offensive juggernaut, I do think that they can finish strong. I think it's safe to assume that the pitching is going to continue to be a strength. After all, it's been strong since the beginning of last season even with some of the injuries. That strong pitching should be enough, at home especially, to overcome what will most likely continue to be a spotty offense.
The biggest factor in my optimism though is the friendly schedule over the final 53 games.
Cincinnati will play 31 of those games at home, where they have posted a 32-17 mark to this point. They also only have one three city road trip left and that trip will feature stops in Houston and Chicago to take on the lowly Astros and the Cubs.
In addition, of the seven road series remaining in the campaign, five of them will be against losing teams.
The good teams the Reds have left to play will almost exclusively be in Cincinnati for those matchups, including St. Louis (twice for 7 games), Oakland, Arizona, the Dodgers and Pittsburgh.
So let's try to keep things in perspective with the Reds. We've all let our preseason expectations cloud our vision when it comes to evaluating this team. The bottom line is that they are in position to make the playoffs for the third time in four years.
And once you're in, anything can happen. As you all know, it's very common for a wild card team to win it all.
Plus, there's always a chance this team could win the division.