Saturday, April 27, 2024

Red Notice


Well, I predicted my Phillies would have trouble with the Reds, and I was right. Go me.

Look, the Reds are a tough team, because the second you think you've figured them out, somebody else shows up. Christian Encarnacion Strand has been that guy for most of the year, the guy who hasn't really done anything, and then when you've counted him out he just does something against you. There isn't really a version of that specifically for the Phillies, and I've talked about Yankee killers but this is more broad. Thorzul a million years ago coined the term 'pissant', somebody who only does well against your team, and he specified that it was Colby Rasmus against the Brewers. Yeah, well it might be CES against the Phillies, because he's hitting .200 against the rest of the league and .300 against the Phils. The only team he's got a better average against is the White Sox, but he's got 5 RBIs against us. 

Christian Encarnacion Strand has 16 RBIs this year alone, and 5 of them, more than 1/4th of them, were against my team. This is exactly what I'm talking about.

Not only that, but there are just some guys that are GOING to drive you crazy, no matter who you are. Like, you try making Elly de la Cruz have an 0-4 night. He's gonna get on base, he's gonna steal something, or he's gonna have some crazy hit that nobody can get to because the exit velocity's over 100mph. It's just not gonna happen, and it's easier if you except it. Right now, even Jake Fraley is hitting .362. The man has a higher on base percentage than Elly, and this is the guy that was supposed to be the power bat. 

And if you look at the holes in this lineup, those are there because T.J. Friedl and Matt McLain are hurt. That is your reprieve. Because when they come back, they're gonna still be extremely good, and you'll be wishing for those holes. You'll be begging for Stuart Fairchild.

The worrying part, even through the success, is the rotation, because even with the number of guys here who are doing well, you're still without Brandon Williamson and, for a little while, Frankie Montas. And two of your arms are people like Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo, two really hard throwing guys who have already spent a long time on the IL. Luckily Nick Martinez and Brent Suter have enough starting experience that they can slide into rotation roles, but I do worry about the durability of some of these guys. Andrew Abbott does seem to be a little different, he just looks like a guy that's gonna keep getting ahead of you. Right now he's got a 2.60 ERA and 20 Ks, and he seems to have taken the head of the rotation away from Hunter Greene, who's getting lit up a lot [again]. I hope he keeps it up, somebody like him as a perennial guy is good for this team.

The Reds have a lot that's working even if there are multiple pieces waiting to come back. If this is what they look like at partial force, imagine how powerful they're gonna be when some of them get back.

Coming Tonight: It is wild that Oakland had enough pitchers to silence the Yankees this past week. Here's one of them.

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