Matt’s Take – Lucky Charm: Sweep, get swept and sweep


Lucky Charm

A lucky charm has arrived for the Cincinnati Reds over the weekend and no, I am not talking about the lucky buckeye from the Miami Valley Gaming Commercials. Over the weekend, the greatest blessing ever decided to make an early arrival and I can officially call myself a father to my first child, Creed Don McAdow. I am one lucky guy and evidently, he is quite the good luck charm for the Redlegs as well, as they haven’t lost a game since he decided to enter the world! While I could write an entire book on how grateful and lucky I am to be a father, I’ll try to focus on writing about the awesome sweep from the weekend!

Built for 162

Anyone who knows me or reads my articles understands how passionate I am about Reds baseball. I watch every single pitch and try to take games day by day. However, one thing that I have to comment on is being built for 162 games. As a fan, I have always been amazed of those who think a season is over after a bad weekend or a single bad game. The season is long, it is a marathon, and the Reds clearly showed they can get back on track in a hurry after going from sweeping the White Sox, getting swept by Seattle, and then sweeping the Angels at home. It’s going to be a rollercoaster of a season, there will be bad droughts, there will be some winning streaks, but all true baseball fans understand that things can change in a hurry.

Espinal No More

My articles are typically very positive. I love the front office and love the direction in which this organization is headed. However, I must state that Santiago Espinal shouldn’t be on the roster when I wake up in the morning. He has 5 hits on the year, is barely batting over .100, couldn’t lay down a bunt over the weekend, and really just isn’t a fit on this roster. You can probably include Bubba Thompson in this category for me as well. With Conner Capel (CF with 6 HR in AAA), and Mike Ford (.292 in AAA), this roster can move pieces around enough to take Espinal and Thompson off this team. I will take a slightly worse defensive team and some position charades over watching Espinal take another AB in a Reds uniform.

As it Stands

Cincinnati currently sits at 12-9 as I am writing this and find themselves 2.5 games back of the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central. The Brewers are on a 4 game win streak and Cincinnati is currently on a 3 game win streak before hosting the Phillies for a 4 game series at Great American. Through 21 games, per Nick Kirby, the Reds are having the best start to a season since the 2013 Reds team. Someone new has stepped up for this team on multiple occasions and with all the injuries, illnesses, suspension, and everything in between, this team has shown that they are really playing for each other. When Montas went down, Suter came right in and put the team on his back. When the team needed a center fielder, Benson has shown that he is more than capable of filling that role. Need someone to eat innings?…Look no further than Nick Martinez. It’s someone new every day and I love that aspect of this Reds roster.

Weekly Elly Praise

You might as well get used to an Elly paragraph every single week, as a star is truly being born right in front of the eyes of all MLB fans. He is slashing .306, 1.051 OPS, has 10 stolen bases, 6 home runs, and was literally just able to legally buy alcohol last year. His plate awareness is getting better, he is taking walks, reached base 9 out of 12 at-bats against the Angels, and is the 2nd player in MLB history to have 5+ home runs and 10 steals through 20 games. He has the ability to be the best player in all of baseball and Cincinnati is lucky to have him suit up in a Reds uniform every single week. He is 4th in MLB in OPS, 4th in MLB in home runs, 20th in MLB in RBIs, 10th in MLB in OBP, 1st in MLB in stolen bases, 25th in MLB in walks, and 15th in MLB in WAR. There is a reason every kid wants an Elly jersey right now, as he is different than anything that has ever stepped foot on a baseball field. Enjoy it!

This column appears in several newspapers in southwest Ohio.

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