Cincinnati Reds: Jeff Gray’s 2012 Prediction – Part V

It’s finally here.  Part V and final prediction for the Cincinnati Reds’ 2012 season.  I know you have been waiting with eager anticipation for the final installment of the preeminent word on forecasting a Reds’ season. 

As for the Cincinnati Reds and where they will finish in the Central Division of the National League, I believe we are dealing with a matter of addition by subtraction, plus a collection of talent to fit a ball park perfectly.

In a division where the 2011 winner, Milwaukee Brewers, and the World Series’ winner, the St. Louis Cardinals, reside one would think it would be difficult to place the Reds in either of the top two positions for the 2012 season.  However, given that the Cardinals lost their most important and feared player, Albert Pujols to the Los Angeles Angels, they have clearly taken a giant step back.  When you factor in that the division winning Brewers lost their most important and feared player, Prince Fielder to the Chicago White Sox, they have also taken a giant step back.  That would be the subtraction of which I speak.  The addition is that those two players have moved not only out of the division, but out of the league.  When you couple those two moves with the additional belief that the top five teams aren’t even in the National League, you really have to love the Cincinnati Reds’ chances this year.

The batting line-up for the Reds is a perfect fit for Great American Ball Park.  ESPN The Magazine did a breakdown of every MLB team to see how each team fits the ball park in which it plays.  No team had a better match than did the Reds.  They pulled a .98 ranking (that is out of a perfect 1.0).  They are, to coin a phrase, tailor-made for their ball park.

The powerful Cincinnati Reds’ line-up combined with a true number one and number two pitcher in the starting rotation and solid three through five and what you get, in the NL Central Division, is a contender. 

I started this series with a scene from Seinfeld.  It was the one where Jerry wakes up on the subway on his way out to Coney Island to find he is sitting across from a naked guy.  They discussed the New York Mets and their chances in the upcoming season.  They both decided that “you’ve gotta love their chances.”  The last exchange between the two was Jerry telling the naked guy, “Tell you what. If they win the pennant I’ll sit naked with you at the World Series”. 

Well, change that to the Cincinnati Reds and winning the division and I’ll sit  butt-naked in the stands with any one of you.

Here is my prediction for the Central Division:

  1. Cincinnati Reds
  2. St. Louis Cardinals
  3. Milwaukee Brewers
  4. Pittsburgh Pirates
  5. Chicago Cubs
  6. Houston Astros

 If are asking, why that order?  It’s because I want it that way.  That and $5.00 will buy you a gallon of gasoline.

Today is opening day.  Enjoy the game, if you get the opportunity to watch.

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