the Cards starters are about equal to the Reds overall. they have a great 1-2 but a weak 3-4-5. we have a solid 1-2-3-4-5. IMO our pen is better. Their pen was very lucky last year (fangraphs had a nice article on this).
offensively they have two studs surrounded by youth & solid but unspectacular vets. we have one stud surrounded by youth & solid but unspectacular. IMO the Reds are one thumper short & the Cards clearly are the better team. I felt this way all winter. if Walt had the money he could have swung a trade that brought us that thumper and we could win this year.
now if Carpenter suddenly goes from Cy Young to Mr Generic then we absolutely can beat them this year.
the Cubs look ugly. weak 4th & 5th starters, weak middle relief, lots of holes other than Lee & Ramirez.
the Brewers seem to do better than i think they will every year. i do agree that on paper they need a lot more pitching. i think the Reds are ahead of them.
Pirates: the only team we always finish ahead of !
2010 Mock Draft Selections (picking for Rays)
I believe, if the Reds can hit it is their division to win, because for the first time in my lifetime (and I'm 45), they have the pitching needed to contend.