September 10, 2010

Series Preview: Cincinnati Reds

Back when there were six weeks left in the baseball season, I had a nightmare which consisted of waking up and finding out there were three weeks left in the baseball season. Now three weeks later, that nightmare is reality. Every remaining game is pure gold, none less so than this three game series with the Cincinnati Reds.

The Reds are trying their best to blow the NL Central division, having lost five in a row. But at 79-61 they still lead by five games with 22 to play. For Cincinnati, having the chance to add to that lead against the Pirates, 14-53 on the road this year, is like having the chance to go across the river and drink in Kentucky for an extra 90 minutes - and that is something Cincinnati likes.

Cincinnati Reds - Friday 7:10, Saturday 7:10, Sunday 1:10
At this point in the season and after so many meetings there's not much point in telling you about the Reds, except to say that Joey Votto (.323/.423/.590) has a nice figure and wonder why he feels the need to crop his face out of the picture? Jay Bruce (.274/.343/.464) is still out with pain in his right side which is good for the Buccos since Bruce had been red hot before his injury. He could be ready by Sunday.

Tonight, Paul Maholm (7-14, 5.43) faces Homer Bailey (3-3, 5.00). You know it is bad when the Pirates can't hit someone whose actually named Homer. Paul Maholm's season has been pretty good in every aspect other than pitching. My pick is the Pirates.

Saturday, Charlie Morton (1-11, 9.55) gets another start against Aaron Harang (6-7, 5.15). I read a game story which spun Morton's last start - an eight hit, six run affair in which he struck out one and didn't get out of the fourth inning - as a step in the right direction. That is like some Mapquest directions that actually direct you to drive off a cliff. My pick is the Pirates.

And in Sunday's finale it's Brian Burres (3-3, 5.75) facing Johnny Cueto (12-5, 3.45). You know the drill...We can't hit Cueto. Does it sometimes seem like the Pirates just have one pitcher who is starting every game? Would anyone know if Brian Burres and Jeff Karstens melded into Breff Burrens? My pick is the Pirates.