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Reds Crash Land In Freefall From Dream Season

Updated on August 10, 2012

Reds Crash Land In Freefall From Dream Season

by Robb Hoff

August 10, 2012

The Cincinnati Reds looked poised to run away with the N.L. Central division and vie for the best record in baseball as the streaking team embarked upon a seven-game road trip against teams with losing records and serious flaws.

Instead of riding an unlikely momentum that was spawned despite the loss of their best hitter Joey Votto, the Reds fell back to earth. The Reds hitters reminded their fans that the reality is this team does not hit very well.

The Reds have scored a total of 11 runs in five straight losses, and in the process they have managed to make some very average pitchers looks like Cy Young Award candidates, like turning Randy Wolf into Randy Johnson or Chris Volstad into Jim Palmer.

The stark truth is that unless the Reds coaching staff or front office figures out a way to improve the hitting and run scoring ability of this team, they will continue to falter and likely fade.

Internally, the biggest room for improvement at the plate is obviously the return of Votto but a close second would be the return of Jay Bruce, who has simply performed his vanishing act at the plate once again.

The enigma to Reds fans that is known as Jay Bruce grows more and more frustrating as the Texas-sized slugger continues to display thwarted development and limited capacity to adjust to major league pitching despite the considerable experience he now has under his belt.

The problems for Bruce at the plate festered in July when he hit .213 for the month, including an 0-for-19 hitless streak. During this five-game losing streak, Bruce is looking hopeless once again in a 2-for-19 funk that includes no hits in his last 12 at-bats.

The Reds need Bruce to hit more than ever, but he continues to show the same issues that have limited his effectiveness at the plate over his young career. The Reds really either need to hire an instructor who can fix Bruce's problems or else consider benching him because his at-bats are now causing significantly more damage than good.

Winning cures all ills but when the losses start to mount like they are now for the Reds, the bigger the ill, the bigger the problem, and it's crystal clear that Jay Bruce is not proving himself to be the right man for the job.


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    • Robb Hoff profile image

      Robb Hoff 5 years ago from Cincinnati, Ohio

      It sure does make the the last third of the season that much more interesting.

    • adjkp25 profile image

      David 5 years ago from Northern California

      It was only a matter of time before the absence of Votto caught up to them. I give them credit for playing as well as the did, the contributions made by Ludwick certainly helped offset the loss of Votto.

      The NL Central is still up for grabs so we will have to see how it all plays out.