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30 in 30

30 in 30: The Cincinnati Reds

DAY THREE. 28th BEST TEAM. EXCITING STUFF. IT’S THE CINCINNATI REDS!

Mr. Red Legs by Lee Burchfield is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

30 in 30: The Cincinnati Reds


Estimated Reading Time: 3 Minutes

2016 Record: 68-94

2016 Finish: 28th in the MLB, 14th in NL

2016 in Review

THE REDS WERE A GAME BETTER IN 2016 THAN THE YEAR BEFORE! LET US REJOICE!

If you came into the 2016 season with high hopes for the Reds, you were drunk. If you left 2016 with high hopes for the Reds, you are less drunk. The Cincinnati Reds have a bright future, one that has been slowly building since 2013, after their loss to Pittsburgh in the Wild Card Round. From that point on, the Reds slowly began rebuilding their franchise piece by piece. By dishing out hot commodities like Johnny Cueto and Jay Bruce, the Reds were able to create a strong foundation of young talent in their organization. The Cincy Roster had an average age of 27.9 years, putting it in the lower third of the entire league. This team is brimming with young talent, they just need to play with some confidence.

2016 saw the resurgence of Joey Votto, the basepath wizardry of Billy Hamilton and the coming out party of Adam Duvall. Joey Votto hit .252 going into the All-Star Break, and for the 4th year in a row, he wasn’t going to play in the Midsummer Classic. Joey Votto did something he very rarely does: he got pissed. Votto’s second half was something to behold, hitting at a .408 clip and only struck out 32 times in 314 plate appearances. Votto lit himself on fire and plowed straight on through the rest of the season. Joey Votto is the centerpiece of the Reds rebuild.

Surprises

Adam Duvall is the next big thing. You heard it here first. In his first full season in the Majors, Adam Duvall hit 33 dingers, and amassed 103 RBIS, rounding out his year to be worth 3.2 WAR. Not too shabby for a guy who was stuck in the minors the previous two years. Originally drafted by the San Francisco Giants in 2010 in the 11th round, but was later traded to the Reds for pitchers Keury Mella and Mike Leake. Adam Duvall is the power hitter the Reds have been looking for. This guy has a killer wing, he’s got a cannon for an arm, and he provided a different kind of threat in the Reds order. Hamilton has the speed, Cozart has the contact, Votto has the pop and Duvall has the power. That’s a winning combination.

Disappointments

The bullpen. The bullpen was disappointing. When looking at the 29 team who don’t play in Colorado, because Coors Field is Pitcher Hell, the Reds gave up the most hits, the most runs, the most walks, the most home runs, and found themselves last in ERA. The only category the Reds bullpen lead the league in is Most Hopes Shattered in the late innings.

How does this happen? Well, with the Disabled List Carousel that was spinning in Cincy, all of your struggling starters flood the bullpen and never really gather their bearings. Alfredo Simon was a starter for Detroit in 2015, but saw a lot of bullpen work in 2016 for the Reds. Simon also saw his ERA balloon to 9.36. The bleeding never stopped for Cincinnati’s pitching staff, and that contributed to the collapse of their season.

Looking Ahead

Young players continuing to amaze. There’s a lot to be excited about if you’re a Reds fan. Raisel Iglesias started off hot but was sidelined due to injuries. Billy Hamilton is the most exciting player to watch on the basepaths. Adam Duvall might kill someone with a home run ball this year. Lots of great stuff! This team decided to rebuild at the right time in order to minimize their time on the bottom of the league. If the pitching staff can get it together, even just a little bit, we’ll see the youth of the Cincinnati Reds explode in a similar way to how Chicago’s youth are poised to run the show at Wrigley. The Reds have a bright future. You can count on that.

Justin Colombo is a 2017 Broadway Show Softball League All-Star at 3B/SS. He's essentially the Manny Machado of the Kinky Boots team. Justin has been writing about Baseball since he was a little kid. Now that being an actor in NYC has given him a lot of free time, in 2015 he decided to take his passion public and founded Three Up, Three Down as a way to express his love for the game. From there, Three Up, Three Down grew from a hobby to an obsession. After years of growth and one insult from MLB's Historian, Justin launched The Turf, a way to expand into all areas of the sporting world. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter. LET'S. GO. METS.

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