Recently I posted parts I and II about the Cincinnati Reds after two months of work in the 2012 season. In Part I, I talked about the hitting – or lack thereof. In Part II, I talked about the starting pitching and the surprise that has been so far. In this post, Part III, I want to focus on the real consistent part of the Cincinnati Reds team – the bullpen.
The Cincinnati Reds’ bullpen is doing an outstanding job so far this season. Check out some statistics about the relief pitchers for the Reds. At the end of the month of May, the Reds led the league in ERA, 2.36, and batting average against, 1.99. They also have more wins than any other team, 12, led the league in strikeouts, 169 and are converting on 75% of all save opportunities, even though it has been by platoon for most of the season.
Individually, the Cincinnati Reds’ bullpen is led by Aroldis Chapman. Chapman has become the undisputed closer for the Reds. He has converted 5 out of 5 saves, has a 4-0 record, 5 holds, stuck out 50, and allowed only 7 hits and 0 earned runs. Chapman is a good as advertised and is off to one of the greatest starts in the history of the game.
JJ Hoover has been a great asset to the Cincinnati Reds. He has been used sparingly, but has done a very good job when he has been called on. He boasts a 1-0 record and only allowed 3 earned runs to go with 13 strike outs. I have heard from several sources that the Reds organization is very pleased withHoover.
Alfredo Simon, for me, has been the most pleasant acquisition for the Cincinnati Reds. Picked up at the start of the season off of waivers, he has performed very well. Although he has an 0-1 record, he has struck out 29, allowed only 4 earned runs and has an ERA of 1.74 in 20.2 innings of work.
You must give thanks to the pitching staff when you look at the Cincinnati Reds’ record and first place position. Specifically, you must thank the bullpen for the shut down work they have done for the Reds. Without them, well, I figure the Reds would still be right at or below .500 and struggling.