On Saturday, July 6th, the Cincinnati Reds defeated the Seattle Mariners 13-4. Overall, they outscored the Mariners 16-11 in the series, not allowing more than 4 runs in any of the games. They lost the series, dropping 2 of 3 to the 40-49 Seattle Mariners. This series perfectly captures the essence of the Cincinnati Reds’ 2013 season from an offensive standpoint.
Currently, at the time of this writing, the Reds are being shut out by Brewers’ right hander Wily Peralta. Peralta entered the game with a 5-9 record and an ERA of 5.27, culminating in a WAR of -1.7. Peralta has allowed just one hit since the first inning, when Reds’ center fielder Shin-Soo Choo lead off the game with a hit. Peralta has a 6.12 ERA at home this season, the worst in the National League.
Currently, for the 2013 season, the Reds rank 4th in the National League in runs scored with 388. Fourth in runs scored is solid, and is nothing to complain about. However, looking at their offensive distribution, it’s clear that the Reds’ offense is as feast-or-famine as they come. They’ll score 10 runs in one game, and then go a week struggling to get 4 runs in any given game.
The Reds have been shutout 6 times this season (7 if this keeps up), and have been held to 2 or fewer runs 28 times. Further, when their pitching staff, which has kept them afloat, gives up 4-5 runs, the Reds are just 12-15. For an offense that, by the stats, “averages” more than 4 runs a game, that is a perplexing number. The truth of the matter is that the Reds’ run scored totals are inflated by the games where they score more than 10 runs, which has happened 9 times already this season. If the Reds are going to make a serious run at the world series, they will need some form of consistency with their offense.
With the run scoring potential that this lineup has, with Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Shin Soo Choo, and Brandon Phillips all being superstar-caliber players, it’s hard to call this offense bad. The Reds offense is not bad, but is a model of inconsistency.