The Reds are off tonight for the first time since the day after opening day. Boy, do they need it. They have lost five in a row after starting 5-3. But all five of their wins came in their last at-bat. So they were getting a little lucky. That luck caught up to them in Pittsburgh where they got swept, including two walk-off wins for the Pirates.
The starting pitching has been nothing to write home about (or blog about, apparently) and the bullpen has been mediocre at best. But the problem is clearly the offense. Bruce hit two home runs yesterday, so he may be breaking out, but so far his much touted breakout hasn't happened yet. And the Reds continue to get poor on-base percentage from their lead-off hitter. I don't think Dusty is ever going to agree that the main trait you need in lead-off guy is the ability to get on base. The fact that a guy is a fast outfielder with good defense doesn't necessarily mean he's a lead-off hitter.
But the big question on everyone's mind: What's up with Aaron Harang and how long before Chapman takes his spot in the rotation?
I don't see it happening soon for a couple of reasons. 1. I'm holding out hope that Harang turns it around. 2. The Reds must have Harang pitching well to either help the team or bump his trade value. 3. Chapman's not really that stretched out. Right now, Chapman is shadowing Leake, but that's only one spot removed from Harang. Stay tuned. . .
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