The story of the season for the Cincinnati Reds has been the unnatural amount of injuries that have plagued the starters on the team from the start. Now, as you can see below, this could very well be the straw that finally breaks the proverbial camel’s back.
Sources: Votto did not make trip with #Reds, getting MRI on left knee. Stint on DL appears likely. Same knee that he had surgery on in 2012.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) May 16, 2014
It is astonishing the amount of injuries the Reds have been forced to endure this year. Just take a look at the names of players who have spent time injured this year: Mat Latos, Jonathan Broxton, Jay Bruce, Aroldis Chapman, Skip Schumaker, Tony Cingrani and Devin Mesoraco.
While Votto’s struggles have been well documented this season, his presence in the lineup was still irreplaceable. With Jay Bruce on the disabled list, Votto was the sole left-handed hurdle for pitchers to face (even when he wasn’t hitting like himself). Though his average was reaching career lows (.257), his ability to reach base was still high (.410 OBP). The loss of Votto means the only possible left-handed hitters in the starting lineup are switch-hitters Billy Hamilton and Brayan Pena.
That’s 4/8 starting position players, 2/5 starting pitchers, and the top 3 bullpen arms with injury woes this year. Uncle. #Reds
— Red Reporter (@redreporter) May 16, 2014
For the Reds in recent years, healthy players have been a luxury for the team. Such a reliance on health has been evident by the front office’s stubbornness to add depth to the team (Ramon Santiago, Roger Bernadina, Jeff Francis and Trevor Bell don’t cut it). Now the Reds are facing the repercussions of a lack of offseason success as they attempt to reach the playoffs without their top two hitters and second-best starting pitcher.
The talk before the season was “can the Reds finally win a playoff game?” After the Latos and Mesoraco injuries it became “can the Reds make the playoffs?” Now fans must be asking themselves “can the Reds even finish the season with a .500 record?”