Reds begin their annual fade in pennant race

Published 12:32 am Monday, August 3, 2009

Well, I was right. I didn’t want to be right, but I am. Granted the topic was easy to be right, but I was hoping I’d be wrong.

Back in April I said I wasn’t going to let the Cincinnati Reds fool me. There have been eight straight losing seasons and another is on the horizon. I was hoping for a winning season, but I was waiting until August to see where the Reds were in the standings before getting excited.

About two weeks ago my budding excitement ran into a brick wall known as Reds Reality. Injuries are taking their toll along with the defense and the anemic offense.

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Last year Adam Dunn hit 40 home runs and drove in 100 runs. Fans complained about his defense that saw him make seven errors in 137 games or that he struck out too much.

Ryan Howard strikes out even more than Dunn, but no one complains because he hits 40 home runs and drives in 100. The number of players in the game today who can put up 40 and 100 numbers is very limited and the Reds traded their guy away.

The Reds got Micah Owings in the deal. Not bad, but they probably would have been better off to put him in left field. He might not have become the next Babe Ruth story of pitcher turned slugger, but he couldn’t be any worse than the platoon team of Laynce Nix, Chris Dickerson, Darnell McDonald, Jonny Gomes and whoever else is being used to fill that spot in the lineup.

But that’s not the only problem. In fact, picking your worst Reds’ moment this season is like picking the worst Jonas Brother. No matter what you pick, you can’t go wrong.

Despite the woes, I’m still a baseball fan and, even more so, a Reds’ fan. The organization is making some strides in the pitching area, but there is much to be done on the offensive end.

For examble, Jay Bruce with 18 home runs is nice, but a .207 average and more strikeouts than Braylon Edwards dropped passes proves there is a need for more run production.

Willy Traveras has just 21 stolen bases and it makes you think there was a reason why Arizona wasn’t making any great efforts to keep him from testing the free agent market.

With all that said, it’s time for that famous rallying cry, “Wait till next year.”

I hope it’s next year. I don’t have that many years left.

–– Sinatra ––

Jim Walker is sports editor of The Ironton Tribune.