My latest for Cincinnati Magazine, written before the Reds figured out how to win every baseball game. In this column, I laid out a specific plan that would lead the Reds on the path to being a competitive team by Opening Day 2019:
Yes, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s true. If the Cincinnati Reds were to win all their remaining games in the 2018 season, they would finish 117-45, which would surely be enough to secure at least the second Wild Card slot in the playoffs. Plus, theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d be on a 92-game winning streak, which has to be close to the all-time National League record.
Which got me thinking about best-case scenarios. Certainly, that big winning streak, combined with a four-game sweep of the Mariners in the World Series Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the actual best-case scenario for the 2018 Reds. But letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s get realistic here, and maybe frame the question in a different way: WhatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the best-case scenario for the Reds over the next 10 months, between now and Opening Day 2019? What moves can the Reds make in order to best position themselves to be more competitive beginning next season?
I have seven specific recommendations, but theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re all based on the assumption that a competitive club is within this teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s grasp, if management decides to go for it. Not a World Series winner in 2019 perhaps, but a team thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s significantly improved and poised to be competitive in the following seasons as well.
Give it a read and let me know what you think. Thanks!
Also, see if you can spot nine album titles by one of my favorite bands sprinkled throughout the column.