“Pinch hitting for Jason Linden… Chris Garber. Garber”

What a week to get to write about the Reds offense. In their first five games after the All-Star break, the Reds have “hit” .186/.238/.342. Five games, 11 runs scored, and five ugly losses. As we say too often around here, TOS.

What can you say about an offense that died? (Hat tip to our Baby Boomer readers.)

Of all the awful numbers in that five game stretch, the worst are probably these: 48 strikeouts, 6 walks. That’s a 8:1 ratio, and a 28% K rate. Basically, the Reds are turning every pitcher they face into Clayton Kershaw.

We know that’s horrible, but how horrible? Does it matter? For the season, the Reds strikeout to walk ratio is a much more reasonable 2.9:1. They’ve struck out 21% of the time.

In April, their numbers were 2.5:1 and 20%. They averaged 3.78 runs/game, and went 12-15.

In May, their K/BB ratio jumped to 3.2:1 and the K-rate was 21%. Their R/G dropped to 3.19, but their record was a little better 13-14.

In June, the K/BB was 3.0:1 and the K-rate was 20%. They scored 4.82 R/G, and improved to 18-10. (June proves that this look at strikeouts is primarily for novelty purposes. The small improvement in contact was outweighed by a 50 point jump in SLG.)

And in July, counting the lousy post-ASG stretch (but not Tuesday’s game), the Reds are at 3.1:1 and 22%; averaging 3.65 R/G and going 8-9.

Overall, the Reds season numbers (2.9:1 and 21%) are very near the NL averages of 2.7:1 and 21%.

What do we know? The obvious. The Reds have been a total mess since the ASG. Absent Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips, this team is going to be overmatched pretty frequently. They may not strike out all that much more, but they won’t command the strike zone as much. Ramon Santiago, Chris Heisey, and Skip Shumaker may make almost as much contact as Votto and BP, but they won’t walk or hit for nearly as much power. That’s where the money is, and that’s why this team is going to be in a lot of trouble if they don’t add a bat before the trade deadline.