As we sit here on July 1st, I'm struggling to wrap my head around what exactly what the Reds needs.
Looking at the team, I know where I think they could use upgrades:
As much as Stubbs drives me up the wall sometimes, I'm going to be patient with him. His OPS+ is 87 which isn't horrible and his defense (despite him being afraid of the wall) really is good. When you consider he's only a rookie and should improve, I'm all for sticking it out with him.
Right now Cabrera has an impressively bad OPS of .621. I mean, that's really bad. However, as much as I hate saying somebody "knows how to win" watching OC play gives you appreciation for his leadership. I'm not really sure I'm willing to risk what it would do to the clubhouse to acquire a SS.
The bullpen seems to have stabilized a bit as of late. The Reds aren't going to trade for a closer, so we all need to hope and pray Cordero rememebers that he doesn't suck soon. I think we may end up having to acquire an arm at the deadline, but I'm willing to let Ondrusek and Smith ride out their hot streaks before concluding we have to trade for another arm in the pen. Hopefully Chapman comes up soon and we get a better idea of our pen by the deadline.
That leaves two spots, LF and SP.
I think you can lump the uncertainy of Stubbs into what I'm about to say, but I'm not sure if I'm comfortable having both Gomes and Stubbs playing everyday down the stretch. Gomes had a GREAT May, but his April and June were horrible, especially considering his defense. I'm not saying Gomes is garbage, I think he'll be a useful part to the Reds down the stretch, I'm just not sure if the Reds can afford not having another option to him and Stubbs. I'd like to see Heisey get some more ABs the next few weeks to see if he can relyed upon, but if the Reds can find an alternative who can play both LF and CF and not to be forced to break the bank to get him, it'd be ideal. DeJesus really does seem like the perfect fit for the Reds.
SP is the main need, however. Leake has been amazing this year, he really as. However when you consider he's going to be over 100 IP after his next start, I just don't know how much you can actually expect out of him down the stretch. Arroyo will be Arroyo, and I think I'm starting to accept the fact that you can do worse than Harang as your 5th starter. Cueto is probably the best overall pitcher right now, but he fell apart in the second half last year so he's not even a sure thing. The x factor is obviously Volquez. If the Reds can go out and get Lee, that'd be amazing, but I think no matter what they're going to need to trade for a reliable starter at minimum.
What say you?