It’s been up, it’s been down, but this was a pretty entertaining first half of the season for the Cincinnati Reds overall. No one was giving this team a chance at the start of the season, but they have definitely shown potential. At the very least we know this lineup should be solid as the younger players continue to learn and get better. Let’s talk about this lineup though.
BA: .260 (5th in NL)
OBP: .327 (4th)
OPS: .778 (3rd)
HR: 125 (3rd)
RBI: 407 (6th)
Absolutely nothing to scoff at here. Combine all of this with the Reds leading the NL in steals and this is an offense to be feared. All this team needs is a few starting pitchers to be competitive in an unusually weak NL Central this year…speaking of which…
ERA: 5.05 (Last in NL)
Runs: 463 (Last)
Earned Runs: 439 (Last)
HR: 146 (Last)
AVG: .262 (12th)
WHIP: 1.42 (14th)
BB: 331 (14th)
You get the point yet? The starting pitching for the Reds this year has been horrendous. They definitely are making up the meat of the stats above. It’s a damned miracle that the Reds even have the record they do right now (which is still 10 games under .500). Let’s just get to some mid- season awards for this team and try to forget the shitshow that is the Reds starting pitching.
Mid-Season MVP, Silver Slugger, Ruler of the Universe
Joey Votto 1B .315/26/68/.427
He leads the Reds in every major offensive category besides BA where Cozart is at .316. The man has walked more than he has struck out too which is unreal. I really think sour fans take this man for granted sometimes because the team has sucked lately. Votto is very possibly the best all around hitter the Reds have ever had. Yea I said it. Go look up the man’s career numbers if you don’t believe me.
Scott Feldman…I Guess… 7-6/3.94
The guy has legitimately looked really good at times this season. Feldman is someone the Reds should see if they can keep around after the season. He’s could definitely show the young guns a thing or 2. One of those being not to go boating while you’re on the 60 day DL.
Most Improved Player
Zack Cozart .316/9/35/.394
Holy hell where did this come from? I thought this would be Peraza’s spot with how he looked late last year. It seriously almost looks like the 2 swapped spots. Cozart has pulled a complete 180 from how he has played through his entire career. I always knew the guy could hit the ball due to how he would get a lot of doubles, but no one saw this coming. I’m just going to go ahead and assume he shadowed Votto and learned from watching him, or in other words what every other damn player on this team should be doing. If the Reds trade Cozart I’d understand, but honestly I’d try and hold out for a godfather offer. If one never comes then keep him, because it appears he is really hitting his prime.
The Reds having 2 All-Stars really speaks to how this lineup is doing. Not many teams have multiple All-Stars, much less a team 10 games under .500 having 2. The Reds probably aren’t close enough to .500 to be buyers later this month, but that’s fine. They have a young and hungry core that really seems to be having fun this year despite the garbage fire of the starting pitching. The Reds are definitely on the upswing, and with the Cubs looking more and more like a 1 hit wonder the NL Central could be wide open over the course of the next few seasons. The next few years could be a hell of a lot of fun.