Aaron Harang wasn’t sharp in a couple of important spots yesterday, but he struck out 10 and didn’t walk anyone. That’s encouraging.
I’m starting to get a little excited about this year’s rotation (and I can’t believe I’m saying that):
–Harang will be good this year.
–There is reason to believe that Claussen will be above average this year.
–Bronson Arroyo will likely be average, at worst.
–Dave Williams should be average, or maybe better…he’s at the point in a pitcher’s career where they make a jump.
–Eric Milton is the X-factor. If he really has made strides, he could be average, or slightly below.
At worst, we’re looking at an average rotation, and there is some value in that. With the offense the Reds boast, an average rotation will win a lot of games.
Unfortunately, the Reds have to use relief pitching for 2-3 innings most nights. That’s where they’re going to be in big trouble…but I can see a scenario where the Reds are competitive this year, and it doesn’t take much of a stretch. (Of course, it’s possible that I just have that unrealistic early-season optimism.)
It’s all dependent on the bullpen, however, and that concerns me.
What do you guys/gals think?