Let’s recap today’s titanic struggle….
WP: Jiminez (18-6)
LP: Bray (0-2)
–Well, that was a stinker. For the second straight day, the Reds jumped out to an early lead on one of the league’s best pitchers, only to let it slip through their collective fingers.
–I’m very sad to report that Aaron Harang’s career as a Cincinnati Red is over. I love the big guy, and I wish things weren’t turning out like this, but the Reds cannot be dumb enough to allow Harang to make another start in the middle of the pennant race.
–While we’re on the subject, I see no reason to allow Bill Bray or Carlos Fisher to take one step out of the bullpen if the score is close. These games are too important.
–Cincinnati left 12 runners on base. Three times, they left bases loaded. One other inning, they left runners on first and third. Ugly.
–Drew Stubbs is brutal right now. Unfortunately, he gets to play every day because the Reds only have three outfielders. This team desperately needs Jay Bruce back in the lineup.
–Paul Janish’s only value to this club is his defense. If he’s going to make stupid defensive plays like he did today, he’s worthless to this club. He’s my favorite non-pitcher on this club, but that ball he threw over Brandon Phillips’ head was terrible, and it allowed the game to get out of hand.
–Cincinnati’s lead over second-place St. Louis is down to six games.
–Okay, now that we’ve gotten past all that…step away from the ledge. The Reds have Cueto, Arroyo, and Wood going in the next three games, and I like our chances of splitting this series. After that, the good guys come home to face Pittsburgh and Arizona. There is no reason to start acting silly, or screaming that the sky is falling. The Reds are in an exceptionally strong position.