So, apparently opening day for the Cincinnati Reds is today.
They aren’t the Bengals, but they are a local Cincinnati team. There seems to be a lot of misguided love for the Bearcats on CincyJungle, so I’m assuming there is some interest in the Reds, too.
Overall, the Reds seem to have downgraded their roster from last season.
They lost a good offensive outfielder (Shin Shoo-Choo), a quality starting pitcher (Bronson Arroyo), and a good defensive catcher (Ryan Hannigan), while not really adding much of anything except journeymen backups.
This seems eerily similar to the Bengals’s strategy, who tend to use Free Agency as a process to shed quality players (Justin Smith, J Jo, E Steinbach, Michael Johnson, Anthony Collins, etc...), while adding journeymen backups (Clements, Newman, Gilberry, Bruce Gradkowski, Jason Campbell, BJGE, etc...)
Also, eerily similar to the Bengals, is the Reds frequently making the post-season of late, but with nothing to show for it:
2010 ... 91-71 (lost wild card play-in game)
2011 ... 79-83
2012 ... 97-65 (led 1st round 2-0, but lost 3-2)
2013 ... 90-72 (lost 1st round 3-0)
The Reds seem to have very good starting pitching, and a good bullpen. But the bullpen seems to mostly be injured at the moment. And the pitching is necessary, as the offense is subpar, highlighted by a few stars and a bunch of ‘meh’.
So the question is, for a team who barely squeaked into the playoffs last year, and seem to have lost more than they gained over the off-season, what do you expect from the Reds this year?