Hard to jump two teams assuming the Pirates are for real, but things are definitely looking a lot better for the Reds faithful than this time last week. 5 games in 4 days including no travel day to the West Coast. And with the bats waking up and good starting pitching the pen is in excellent shape for the rest of the roadtrip.
The Cardinals have just been ridiculous this season, I think it will be realistically very difficult to catch them.
Baseball is like church, many attend, few understand
The pirates bullpen is already showing signs of being worn out and its still July. The card should regress
Plus we have some help on the way:
"Left fielder Ryan Ludwick went 0-for-1 with a walk and reached on catcher’s interference in his second game of rehab for Single-A Dayton."
Looks like the Cardinals are toast from the optimistic post game tone on the game thread Shaping up to be a fun last two months, that's for sure,
And to all a good night...
When Luddy gets back, with the Reds better D and base running, they have plenty of time to make it damn close. If the Cards can manage to take 4 of 5 from the Bucs...who knows? The Reds CAN be close, very close to the Cards in say, a week or 10 days.
"You only have to bat a thousand in two things; flying and heart transplants. Everything else you can go 4-for-5."
Of course, the Reds have no cakewalk in the schedule either, and somehow, the Cards are 7 games ahead on the loss side. Bottom line: the Reds must catch and destroy the Pirates. Watching Sports Center, I have detected signs that they are making stupid mistakes lately. They may very well be beginning the usual slide.
How many games left between them and the Reds?
I'm of the belief that it will be imprudent to assume anything about what the Cards or the Pirates will or won't do. I can't assume that the Pirates will have their usual second half swoon, although I understand that remains a possibility. And I clearly can't assume the Cardinals will struggle. They may well be a very lucky team and that luck will run out - but the times we've played them, I've been struck with how well they're playing. I hate it on one hand, but I clearly need to respect them. Some help from others would be nice, but then again, perhaps this is one of their years. Erardi used the quote from Rickey Henderson following the 1990 World Series loss to us, "Someone forgot to tell Rickey it was the Reds' year." I'm hoping such is not the case with the Birds.
No question we have our work cut out for us.
“In the same way that a baseball season never really begins, it never really ends either.” - Lonnie Wheeler, "Bleachers, A Summer in Wrigley Field"
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The way the Reds are hitting now....doesn't matter who you play and the pitching isn't going anywhere.....when the Reds play poorly, they lose. This team controls it's own destiny.
Still 2 full months left....and it's completely unpredictable. Someone in the NL will probably tear off a 38-20 finish.....someone pretty good will probably have 25-35 finish.
Every series is unpredictable...that's why they don't stop now but play 162.