Time for a recap of today’s titanic struggle….

FINAL
Cincinnati 7
NY Mets 9
WP: Pelfrey (7-4)
LP: Harang (5-9)
S: Rodriguez (23)
BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–None. Absolutely none.

NEGATIVES
–Aaron Harang and D**** W*******, primarily. No one was good. For all of Dusty Baker’s constant preaching about fundamentals, the Reds play like a high school team far too often.

ETC.
–When the Reds came into town on Friday, the Mets were the recent laughingstock of the National League. They were losing, and fielding a AAA lineup. Well, Reds fans, they just beat our guys two games out of three. Who’s laughing now?

–After losing 7 of their last 10 games, limping to the end of the first half, the Reds are in fifth place. Are there still some of you out there who think they are having a good season?

–The Reds finished the first half three games below .500. If they play the second half three games under, that will be a final record of 78-84. About what we all expected before the season, wasn’t it? Even the most hopeful among us thought a .500 record would be the upper limit for this team.

So, even though this team is, frankly, painful to watch most nights, they are probably right where they should be. Most of us thought 2010 was the year they should be ready to compete. No reason to be too disappointed about where things are right now…except for the fact that we have to watch this ugly brand of baseball for another three months.

–Hurrah! The All-Star break is here!

11 Responses

  1. Sultan of Swaff

    Guys I lean against moving: Rhodes, Harang, Phillips.
    Guys I lean toward moving: Weathers, Hernandez, Arroyo, Cordero, Masset (if only to avoid giving him a Lincoln-type contract in the offseason)

  2. David

    Chad, I guess it just comes down to what the definition of a good season is. I mean if you expect the Reds to go .500 and they end up 16 games below .500 they had a bad season. If they finish 16 games above .500 they had a great season. Going .500 makes it an average season; however, I think that the team has accomplished more than I thought without some key players (EdE, Votto, Volquez) so at this point I’m giving the Reds a bump this year.

    I have never understood why it is impossible for a team to pass four teams ahead of them. The Reds are five games back. It doesn’t matter how many teams are ahead because none of those teams are more than five games up.

  3. Travis G.

    I have never understood why it is impossible for a team to pass four teams ahead of them. The Reds are five games back. It doesn’t matter how many teams are ahead because none of those teams are more than five games up.

    I understand what you mean, from a purely logical standpoint, but it is harder than sitting five games back from second or third place. The reason being, it requires a swoon from all four teams ahead of you during a hot stretch of your own. More variables must fall into place.

  4. GregD

    1 – I’d saying comparing a team’s performance to expectations and having a good or bad season are mutually exclusive things. A team could be expected to win 70 games, win 75, and still have a “bad season” relative to the rest of the league. They performed better-than expected, but it’s still a losing season.

    I could see the perspective that it is a good season relative to expectations, so it depends on how you are defining “good”. Good relative to the rest of baseball? Good relative to where you expect them to be? Good relative to where you want them to be?

    2 – It is not impossible for a team to climb over 4 teams. However, you have to not only win, but you need all 4 of the other teams winning less games than you.

    How many wins is the magic number for this division? If it is 87, the Reds have to win 45 of their last 75 games, a .600 Wpct. AND the Cardinals have to win less than 38 (.535) AND the 2nd place Brewers have to win less than 42 (.568). etc

    The Cardinals have played at a .538 clip for the first half of the season. It is not difficult to see them match that in the 2nd half and win 87 or more games, especially if they add a hitter and/or pitcher.

  5. pinson343

    “I have never understood why it is impossible for a team to pass four teams ahead of them. The Reds are five games back. It doesn’t matter how many teams are ahead because none of those teams are more than five games up.”

    That’s mostly true, at this point in the season. And the 4 teams ahead of us don’t have to swoon, we’re not that far behind them. We just have to play well, as in getting 10 games or so above .500 (few of us see that happening).

    The ’73 Mets were in last (6th) place going into September, but only 6-7 games out, then played well in September and won the East division with a paltry 82 wins.

    The number of teams ahead of you does become important very late in the season. When those teams play each other, one wins as the other loses, they’re not all going to go on losing streaks.
    Also first place can change hands if the team in first place loses, so you don’t necessarily pick up a full game when you win and the first place team loses.
    When two teams are tied for first and playing each other, you don’t gain ground in terms of GB when you win, and you definitley lose ground when you lose.

  6. pinson343

    To put the above more concisely, when you’re in 2nd place your mathematical elimination number just depends on how far you are behind the 1st place team.
    When you’re in 3rd place or below, it also depends on the schedules of the teams ahead of you: i.e. how many games they have against each other.

  7. pinson343

    GregD (43) very clear explanation of how being in 5th place is relevant to our odds of winning the division at this point.

  8. pinson343

    The Reds’ management should not be buyers in the sense of making a Scott Rolen kind of move, giving up young talent for an old and expensive player on a gamble he’ll get us into the playoffs.

    But they shouldn’t yet be sellers either. A winning record would be meaningful (to me anyway) even if we don’t get into the playoffs, and we’re not really out of it yet.
    They should look for trades that will make the team better this year and next year.
    The biggest hole is at SS (where unike CF Dusty has no good choices).

    What would it take to get Scutaro ? Are there other SSs we could realistically get who would help ?