This just kind of popped into my head as I was reading through the Reds-Twins game thread on the other side of the board: But would it be so bad if the Reds were in the AL Central?
Just for full disclosure, I'm an NL guy. I got introduced to the game during an era of NL dominance and I despise the DH rule. I don't just like the NL better, I believe it's morally superior. I also put a lot of stock in the Reds being a franchise that can trace its history back to the 1800s and playing in a league with a bunch of other teams that can do the same.
Yet despite that, there's still a strong case to be made for the AL Central.
Heres the scenario:
Let's say the Kansas City Royals decide they've got to be in the same division as the Cardinals in order to make something out of that franchise, that they've decided 13 years in the AL Central is enough. Obviously they couldn't just saunter over to the NL. Someone would have to switch places with them.
Then you get to why the Reds might consider it.
First and foremost there's the little matter of the Reds having been in the NL Central for 13 years without a decent rivalry forming. Oh, fans pay some attention to the Cardinals and Cubs, but the Reds have never been in a meaningful race with either club and the rivalries are one-way streets at best.
Second is the matter of the GAB. I like a more athletic, less power-oriented brand of baseball. Problem is the Reds didn't build a park for that. The Reds built a park that accentuates power and as long as the club plays there it's going to have to bring a fair amount of beef to the barbecue. You can claim to be an NL team all you want, but if you play in what amounts to an AL park you're only fooling yourself.
Third, the Reds' natural rival is the Indians. You want a rivalry fans can really get caught up in? Well there it is, the annual battle for Ohio. Beyond that, you've got the Yankees, Red Sox and A's in the AL and the Reds have some relatively modern historical ties to all three of those clubs.
Fourth, apparently Edwin Encarnacion is a Twins killer.
Fifth, there's only three clubs west of the the Central time zone in the AL, which means fewer late games to broadcast.
Sixth, Jr. can DH.
Seventh, being near the Pirates and Brewers all these years has rubbed off on the club on the wrong way. It needs to start hanging around with the Twins and Indians.
Anyway, that's the case for the switch. I'm not going to tell you I like the idea because I'm not wired to like anything to do with the American League. Yet if the opportunity presented itself I think I just might be for the team switching leagues. Ultimately it might be the right thing for the Reds.