The Enquirer gives the stats:
The Reds’ bullpen has the worst ERA (5.32) in the major leagues, has given up the most homers (42) in the majors and has the fourth-worst on-base percentage allowed (.357) in the majors. But the bullpen also is 14-8, with the fourth-best winning percentage among relievers in the majors.
The last has more to do with the offense than the bullpen.
The Reds’ bullpen has 19 saves and 13 blown saves. Here’s a look at the major-league leaders in blown saves:
Kansas City 17
Another pathetic stat.
In April, the Reds’ bullpen blew two leads, but the team won one of those games and went 17-8 during the month.
Date Opponent Result Blown save How blown Reds record
4-6 Pittsburgh W 6-5 White Two runs in eighth tie score 2-1
4-16 at St. Louis L 8-7 Weathers Two runs in ninth give up lead 7-5
In May, the Reds’ bullpen blew three leads, but the team won two of those games and went 12-16 during the month.
5-10 Washington W 9-6 Weathers Two runs in eighth tie score 22-12
5-11 Washington W 5-4 Weathers One run in ninth ties score 23-12
5-20 at Detroit L 7-6 Weathers One run in ninth ties score 25-18
In June, the Reds’ bullpen blew six leads, but the team won three of those games and went 15-12 during the month.
6-4 at Houston W 6-4 Weathers One run in eighth ties score 25-18
Coffey One run in 10th ties score
6-12 Milwaukee L 6-5 Mercker Two runs in eighth give up lead 36-28
6-17 White Sox L 8-6 Hammond One run in eighth ties score 37-31
6-21 N.Y. Mets W 6-5 Hammond Three runs in seventh give up lead 39-33
6-29 Kansas City W 6-5 Weathers Three runs in eighth give up lead 43-36
In July, the Reds are 0-3 with the bullpen blowing two leads.
7-3 at Mil. L 8-7 Mercker three runs in seventh give up lead 44-39
Coffey Two runs in ninth give up lead
So, the really scary thing is that the bullpen is getting worse in holding leads. Blown saves seem to be coming in quickly increasing numbers and the offense hasn’t been able to overcome it.
There is no way this team can stay in contention for a playoff spot with a bullpen that seems to be completely incapable of holding a lead. Drastic changes have to be made and made quickly. Without knowing what’s actually available via a trade (and what we’d have to give up and personally, I don’t think you can afford to trade an offensive player because the improvement in the bullpen won’t compensate for the loss in offense. This is no longer a deep offensive team.), so you have to look inside the organization.
That will probably require some jockeying of the 40 man roster.
Does anyone see a problem with possibly losing players like Mays, Burns, Gosling (I would give him a shot at relief work up here before taking him off the 40 man), Wilson (Will he be any help this year and in last year of his contract), Balfour (Will he help them this year? One year contract for only $340K.) Miguel Perez (Will never hit at the major league level), and even Ryan Wagner (Is he worth holding on to, or is he done?), if it would mean bringing someone onto the 40 man roster that might help this team compete for a wild card spot?
I hope the Reds resist the pressure to bring up Bailey. The number of pitchers that have been successful in the major leagues under the age of 21 can be counted on one hand and so the odds are heavily against his being a big help at his age. Why start the clock on his options by putting him on the 40 man?
But I would have a car pool of guys coming from Louisville and Chattanooga to Cincinnati (and back if they aren’t successful) in an attempt to find a pitcher(s) that will help this team. Guys on the 40 man that I would try first: Chick, Coutlangous, Dumatrait, Germano, Gosling. Hell, I might even try Wagner. Other guys at Louisville I might look at: Venafro, Shearn, Salmon, Michalak, Kelly. Other guys from Chattanooga I might try: Alvarado, Till, Shafer, Guevara, Medlock.
Could they really do any worse than the guys that are presently here?
There are spots that could be made available on the 40 man roster and it’s worth taking a risk with some of these borderline guys presently taking up roster spots to try to get some help for the major league bullpen.