Meet Your Cincinnati Reds Starting Rotation
Baseball time is here again and the Cincinnati Reds, along with other teams, have shaved their roster down to the 25 best players they have to offer in hopes to capture another NL Central Division title.
While all the talk of the acquisition of Shin-Soo Choo, the uncertainty of whether or not Aroldis Chapman will be a starter or closer and just how good Joey Votto is, the one thing (with the exception of the fifth spot) that has remained for certain and set in stone has been the starting rotation.
The Reds have a very young, solid core of a starting rotation that is aided by a crafty veteran who seemingly throws whiffle ball-like pitches. It’s been the success of the starting rotation that has allowed the Reds to be as successful as they have been in recent years.
Last year as a whole, the starting rotation had an ERA of 3.64, good enough for fourth best in the National League
Sure, you can make the argument that in order to be a good team you have to have a good offense—the Reds have that. But the Reds have something that a lot of teams will die for—five guys who can go out day and night and give you six or seven quality innings of baseball.
In this list you will find guys who have made a name for themselves amongst the National League’s best pitchers. Some of them have some proving to do during the 162-game marathon that is the baseball season.
Checking in at the number five spot in the rotation is Mike Leake. Leake, who struggled at some points last season, will be the one who has to prove the most this season for the Reds. It was his spot that mostly was in danger of losing to Chapman. But since Chapman has moved back to the bullpen, Leake has to show that he can pitch at a high level and shake off the rough season he had last year.
In the fourth spot of the rotation is Bronson Arroyo. Arroyo has been around the Reds' organization for what seems like 100 years. He is the crafty veteran player the Reds need in order to keep the young core of the rotation in check. Arroyo has seen it all during his time playing and will continue to shed his wisdom to the young guys in the rotation.
After having an incredible last few weeks of the season that carried over into the post season, Homer Bailey will be expected to continue that success this year. Many Reds' fans have hoped that he will eventually turn the corner and this might be the year he does it.
For someone who has as good of stuff as Mat Latos does, you would think he would be an ace of a staff. Well, he's not-- mainly because he's behind the next guy. I fully expect Latos to be at least a 15-game winner this season for the Reds as long as he doesn't lose his cool on the mound.
If there was any doubt in anyone's mind that Johnny Cueto is not the ace of the staff I would sure like to meet them and tell them they are wrong. After a 19-win season, Cueto will be counted on much like he was last year to be the stopper for this team. There is no doubt in my mind that he has the capability to win 20 games this year.