10.25.10 BY:MEH GRACIAS
GREAT SEASON BUILDS
EXPECTATIONS FOR REDS' FUTURE
First of all, we would like to offer an apology. After the Cincinnati Reds
were swept during their short three-game playoff series earlier this month,
Whack Reds took an unexpected break due to the shock. After thoroughly
covering the Reds throughout the entire 2010 season and following them to
their first playoff appearance in fifteen years, we had forgotten how
overwhelming postseason baseball was when your hometown favorite is included
and were quickly reminded of that familiar feeling of the season being
terminated. Although it was delightful, the Reds' complete breakdown during
the NLDS against the Phillies brought us back down to earth after an amazing
and relentless 2010 Cincinnati Reds season.
There are no complaints on our end. During the Cincinnati Reds' 2010 season
they composed their best record since 1999 (96-67) and won their division
for the first time since they achieved the feat in 1995. After spending the
last nine seasons under the .500 mark (2001-'09), the Reds finished ten
games above in 2010.
So, congratulations Reds! We all knew that winning was around the corner,
but few expected such a great one so soon. The anticipation of seeing this
great team begin the 2011 season and make another run to the World Series is
already growing and it will be here before we all know it. Stay tuned to
Whack Reds during the off-season for all your Cincinnati Reds desires
leading up to March 31, when they begin the 2011 regular season, against the
John Fay from the Cincinnati Enquirer gives us a great breakdown of what to
expect by position:
ATTEMPTING TO QUIET PHILLY; CINCY TRYING TO LIGHT UP OSWAT
10.8.10 BY:MEH ARROYO AND A ROY-O
ARROYO ATTEMPTING TO
QUIET PHILLY; CINCY SEEKING TO LIGHT UP OSWAT
Ouch. The Reds'
National League leading offense was completely shut down by Roy Halladay on
Wednesday night during game one of the NLDS between Cincinnati and
Philadelphia. During Halladay's nine innings of work, he allowed only Jay
Bruce to reach base via walk in the fifth inning. It was just the second
no-hitter hurled in the playoffs (Yankee Don Larsen pitched a perfect game
during the 1956 World Series against the Brooklyn Dodgers) and it occurred
while Mr. Halladay was making his first postseason appearance since his
entrance into the majors in 1998 with the Toronto Blue Jays.
“It was a bad combination with (Home plate Umpire John Hirshbeck) back
Orlando Cabrera said.
“He gave him every single pitch. A guy like Halladay feeds like that. It
makes it nearly impossible with a guy like that. He can hit every single
corner, and he was low in the zone. He and the umpire threw a no-hitter.
Another umpire and another zone, he wouldn’t have been able to throw a game
like that. Basically, he was getting every pitch. We had no chance.”
Halladay surrendered a career-high thirteen hits to the Reds earlier this
year on June 30. This time, on the
wrong end of baseball history, the Reds looked discombobulated Wednesday
night against Roy Halladay. As he meticulously worked an expanded strike
zone throughout the evening, Halladay struck out eight batters and allowed
just one ball to be hit hard all night and it was pitcher Travis Wood who
did so. Edinson Volquez started for the Reds and gave them no chance after
he lasted only 1.2 innings and allowed four earned runs on four hits. But at
the end of the night, no one was to blame except Roy Halladay for the Reds'
"A loss is a loss. If we had lost 10-9 and gotten 15 hits, it's the same
Drew Stubbs said.
"We'll come back Friday with a re-energized effort and hopefully have
On Friday the Reds will face a bona fide Reds killer in Roy Oswalt at 6:07pm
in Philadelphia. Although Oswalt owns a career 23-3 record with a 2.81 ERA
during 32 starts against the Reds, the damage was done against bad
Cincinnati teams from 2001 to '08. During the past two years,
Oswalt has made six starts against the Reds and has failed to receive a
victory. In two starts with the Astros this season, Oswalt is 0-2 with a
6.75 ERA against the Reds. Hopefully Oswalt's Cincinnati slaying stays in
the past. Even though games three and four will be in Cincinnati, a 2-0
deficit will be extremely difficult to overcome.
Roy Oswalt owns a 150-83 career record with a 3.18 ERA. He spent nine full
seasons (2001-'09) with the Houston Astros and made twenty starts for them
this season before being traded to the Phillies on July 29. Oswalt went 6-12
with a 3.42 ERA while in Houston this year and went 7-1 with a 1.74 ERA
after the trade during his twelve starts in Philadelphia. The only team that
has beat Roy Oswalt since he's been with the Phillies was the Washington
Nationals when they defeated Philadelphia 8-1 on July 30. During Oswalt's
final game as an Astro on July 24, he allowed six earned runs on nine hits
receiving the loss in the midst of a 7-0 Cincinnati Reds victory. Joey Votto
and Ramon Hernandez both went deep against Oswalt and drove in two runs a
piece. Laynce Nix went 3-3 and drove in two runs.
Nix, who will get the
start on Friday, has 17 career at-bats against Oswalt and has hit at a
.529 clip including two homers and four RBI. Out of the Reds' starters,
Scott Rolen (.214) and Jay Bruce (.241) own the worst averages against
Oswalt while Joey Votto (.333), Brandon Phillips (.316), and Drew Stubbs
(.333) have all had success against the veteran right-hander. During his ten
major league seasons, Oswalt made eight postseason appearances with the
Astros ('04 and '05) and is undefeated (4-0) with a 3.66 ERA.
Bronson Arroyo will take the mound for Reds on Friday. Arroyo is a "big
game" pitcher and Friday's match up against the Phillies certainly qualifies
as a "big game." Attempting to tie the series at one game a piece, Arroyo
will be making his third postseason start. Arroyo made ten postseason
appearances during 2003-'05 with the Boston Red Sox and posted a 0-0 record
with a 7.41 ERA. Arroyo's first postseason start was during the 2004 ALDS
against the Angels. Arroyo went six innings an allowed two earned runs on
three hits while striking out seven. Advancing to the ALCS in '04, Arroyo
made another start for the Sox, but this time it wasn't so nice. Arroyo
lasted just four innings against the Yankees as he allowed seven earned runs
on eight hits. Despite Arroyo's struggles against New York the Sox ended up
winning that game, and the World Series. Against the Phillies during his
career Arroyo has made seven starts and is 1-5 with a 5.54 ERA.
"I expect a very Yankee Stadium-esque environment,"
said Arroyo, reminiscing about his days in Boston.
"I loved playing in the stadiums when guys are screaming obscenities about
my mother, you know what I mean?"
10.6.10 BY:MEH CREAM CHEESE
REDS LOOK TO SPREAD PHILLY IN GAME ONE
After a fifteen year hiatus, the Cincinnati Reds are returning to the
playoffs. The Reds will face the reigning NL Champions for a five game
series beginning on Wednesday. Cincinnati and Philadelphia are the National
League's two top offenses for 2010 with the Reds leading the NL in
every major offensive category. Philadelphia is ranked fifth in NL
pitching (97-65, 3.67) with Cincinnati ranking seventh (91-71, 4.01) and
both teams bring superior defense. The Reds are tied for first in the NL in
fielding percentage (.988) and the Phillies are tied for fourth (.986).
Although the Phillies are projected to easily defeat the Reds and
potentially win their second World Championship in three years by many
experts, the Cincinnati Reds' potent offense, reliable defense, and durable
pitching staff should provide Philly with an excellent run for the money.
During the 1990 season, the Cincinnati Reds were major underdogs, but
managed to defeat the Pittsburgh Pirates in six games for the NL Pennant and
swept the mighty Oakland Athletics in four games during the World Series as
they captured their fifth World Championship.
“I don’t really enjoy the underdog role, but that’s the role that you’re
cast upon, and that is the role that you serve,”
Dusty Baker said.
“These guys are the incumbents, so, naturally, we should be the underdog.
Plus, we haven’t been here in a long time. It doesn’t matter what people
think. At this point we’re one of the elite that are still standing. As long
as you go to the dance, as they say, you’ve got a chance.”
The Philadelphia Phillies have finished in first place in the NL East for
the last four consecutive seasons ('07-'10). In 2008 and '09 the Phillies
won the NL Pennant and in '08, defeated the Tampa Bay Rays four games to one
in the World Series. It was the Phillies' first World Series Championship
since 1980, a year when Mike Schmidt, Pete Rose, and Steve Carlton led
Philadelphia notching victories in Veteran's Stadium. In fact, since the
their inception in 1883, the Phillies World Championships in 1980 and 2008
stand as the only two they have acquired during their entire distant
The 2010 Philadelphia
squad is quite impressive. Their current infield owns five Gold Glove
Awards, two NL MVP Awards (Howard in '06 and Rollins in '07), a Rookie of
the Year Award (Howard in '05), seven Silver Slugger Awards, and twelve
combined All-Star Game selections. The Phillies outfield owns two Gold
Gloves (Victorino in '08 and '09) and all three were selected to attend the
2009 MLB All-Star Game. The Phillies three-man rotation is considered the
best in baseball by many. Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt, and Cole Hamels combined
own a 377-213 record during their respective careers. The trio has been
selected to eleven All-Star Games, hurled a perfect game (Halladay on
5.29.10), won a Cy Young Award (Halladay in 2003), and own three postseason
MVP Awards (Oswalt, 2005 NLCS and Hamels, 2008 NLCS and WS).
Roy Halladay will take the mound for game one of the NLDS for the Phillies
on Wednesday at 5:07pm marking his first career postseason appearance. In
four career starts against the Reds, Halladay is 1-1 with a 2.84 ERA. During
31.2 innings of work, Halladay struck out 33 Reds while walking only seven
and allowed 10 earned runs. Four of those runs were given up during a
complete game by Halladay against the Reds on June 30, 2010. Halladay struck
out ten Reds that day, but tendered two long balls and allowed a career-high
Although he has been untested in the postseason, Roy Halladay is one of the
elite pitchers in baseball today. His 169-86 career record, along with a
career 3.32 ERA insists that Halladay would be an ace on any ball club, in
any situation. In 33 starts for the Phillies in 2010, Halladay has lasted
less than six innings just once (5.2 on May 23) and owns the most wins in
the NL (21), has the third lowest ERA in the NL (2.44), is second in NL
strikeouts (219), and leads the National League in complete games (9) and
Edinson Volquez will also make his postseason debut on Wednesday against the
Phillies. The 2008 All-Star was
named the Reds' postseason ace by manager Dusty Baker on Sunday, October
3. Volquez made his 2010 debut on July 17 after serving a 50-game suspension
and rehabbing from 2009 Tommy John surgery. During Volquez's first seven
starts, the Reds lost only one game and they have lost only two games out of
the twelve in which the 26 year-old has been on the mound during 2010.
pitching as well as anybody,"
Dusty Baker said.
"He gets left-handers out better than anybody that we have. Plus, he’s a
very calm and cool and good-time-Charlie type guy that should be effective
by the pressure. Especially the fact that he had pitched some championship
games in winter ball in the Dominican. Anybody that’s been to Venezuela or
Dominican, Mexico or Puerto Rico, there is far more pressure there than
there is here.”
After his worst start of the season on August 23 (0.2IP, 5H, 5ER, 3BB),
Volquez was sent to the Dayton Dragons to work on his mechanics. After just
two starts in Dayton (13IP, 2ER, 19K), Volquez returned to the Reds'
rotation on September 11. After lasting six innings or more just three times
during his first eight starts, Volquez has gone six or more in all four of
his starts since returning to the Reds. In those four starts Volquez has
hurled 27.2 innings, allowed seventeen hits, struck out 31 batters while
walking just eight, and failed to surrender a long ball to an opponent all
while posting a 1.95 ERA. During two career starts against Philadelphia,
Volquez is undefeated (2-0, 0.73).