The Reds, however, are done. Two-and-a-half games out of first with five games to play, they sent Chris Michalak to the mound against a team that is loaded from the right side. I suppose if theyíre not going to take their situation seriously, thereís no reason for us to do so.
Michalak lasted just three innings, but the real problem was the offense. The Reds got the leadoff batter on in six of the first eight innings, but went 2-for-18 with runners in scoring position and left 15 men on in a 7-2 loss.
Iím on board with the idea that the Reds are out of the race in no small part because of the Wayne Krivsky notion that he needed middle relievers more than he needed 25% of his starting lineup. The Felipe Lopez/Austin Kearns trade damaged the Redsí offense and didnít come close to addressing their pitching issues. Thereís no way to evaluate their season without placing that deal front and center.
Do you think things might have been different if Adam Dunn shown up for the second half? With another 0-fer last night, Dunn dropped to .153/.344/.264 in September, .230/.367/.426 since the All-Star break. He has killed the Reds for two months, batting .170 in the middle of the lineup with just 13 extra-base hits. Thatís not a slump; thatís a disaster, and itís gone unnoticed in part because guys like me are so used to defending Dunn that we didnít look at him when doing the Redsí autopsy. Unlike in past seasons, when Dunn was criticized for his approach while still being productive, this time the big guy is a big reason why the Reds have failed. Stathead favorite or no, Dunn deserves a load of criticism for his part in this season.