Predicting the Cincinnati Reds’ 2014 Starting Rotation
Predicting the Cincinnati Reds' 2014 Starting Rotation
For the last several seasons if you were asked about the starting rotation of the Cincinnati Reds, one of the main starters you would likely think of would have been Bronson Arroyo. The veteran starter who made a living in Cincinnati and other places on being durable and pitching a ton of quality innings has gone elsewhere in 2014. He and the Reds were prepared for just that to happen going into this season. Does that mean the Reds' rotation is set and prepared to make up for his departure?
They very well could be set up for just that. One thing that is certain is that they are an underrated staff that could be one of the best in all of the National League. Some of the names you know well and some you may not but to a man they eat innings and give the Reds a chance to win. I'll say this about their starting five. If they stay healthy, those people who are handing the NL Central to the St. Louis Cardinals should really pause for a few months.
Health is going to be a big issue for this group though as it is for every team. Not every team has an ace who walks into the 2014 season with question marks regarding his ability to stay healthy. It is strange how one injury plagued season can do that to a guy even when he is just one year removed from a Cy-Young caliber performance in 2012. We will get to him at the top of this list though.
For their time spent in Spring Training, the Reds should pay close attention to their young guys. Last season they were saved by the emergence of one of their young pitchers towards the middle and end of the season. That man is the fifth starter going into this season. If the injury bug does bite this bunch, all is not lost if another young promising starter can step into a bigger role like he did. Feel free to leave a comment below as you click through the slideshow.
5 - Tony Cingrani
Cingrani is one of the unsung heroes from 2013 and his performance last year has everyone pumped about his 2014 potential. He will be slotted fifth but could easily be considered a top half starter before the end of the year.
4 - Mike Leake
You don't hear a great deal about Leake but his 14 wins and low ERA from 2013 suggest that you should. He nearly hit the 200 inning mark which will be very important this season without the durable Arroyo.
3 - Homer Bailey
No-hitter anyone? Bailey is definitely not the most affective starter in the rotation overall but his ability to shut the other team down when he is on is well documented. Look for another solid year of inning eating from Bailey.
2 - Mat Latos
Three of the last four seasons Latos has posted 14 wins. He did so last year with a 3.16 ERA. Latos is consistent and reliable and therefore very important to this rotation. They need him there every fifth day all year long.
1 - Johnny Cueto
Cueto had a marvelous 2012 and a 2.82 ERA in 2013 but he just could not stay healthy. This is where the rubber meets the road for Cueto. He will either bust it all season long and rid himself of the durability questions once and for all or develop even more questions.
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