Reds closer Aroldis Chapman blew a save against the Phillies last Sunday. He gave up two home runs, half as many as he allowed in 2012, and the Reds lost. Normally I would dive into Fangraphs data to decipher what went wrong in his outing. But little did I know it’s because Ol’ Roldy took a weekend class at the David Wells School of Dieting.
According to CBS Philly, Chapman asked the Phillies’ spanish-language broadcaster Rickie Ricardo (you can’t make this up, Lucy) for 100 Cuban pastries from a local bakery. Now, I have no problem with him ordering the pastries. Maybe he wants to share some of his culture with his teammates or freeze some for later or donate them to a shelter or give some to his family. That’s fine by me. If I signed a guaranteed deal worth $30 million, I can’t say that I wouldn’t spend ...
The next month, May 22-June 22, could be a make-or-break stretch for the Redlegs.
As of Tuesday night (discarding any Wednesday games), a rather intriguing situation has played out in the National League. The St. Louis Cardinals (29-16), Cincinnati Reds (28-18), and Pittsburgh Pirates (27-18) currently sit one, two, and three atop the N.L. standings, respectively.
But despite the Reds current position and impressive .609 winning percentage, the next 31 days should be very frightening for Cincinnati.
Question: Why, Josh?
Answer: Well, because the Reds haven’t been able to beat teams that actually, you know, win games. And, as it turns out, they’re about to play quite a few of those teams.
Take a look at all of the games this season in which the Reds have beaten teams with winning records:
All statistics in the first month or two of the baseball season, and sometimes even longer, carry with them the same qualifier: sample size. A .414 BABIP? Likely to diminish as the season continues. A .952 LOB% for pitchers in April? Don’t expect it last. Small sample size. It’s the go-to phrase for statistical anomalies.
Most fans that would care about these numbers in the first place can sing the sample size song. But at what point do we start taking the numbers seriously? At what point is the sample size no longer considered small? In 2007, baseball thinker Russell Carleton tackled this question in a piece that was equal parts brilliant, nerdy, and confusing. (If your kind of leisurely read typically includes phrases like “Because a correlation of .70 means an R-squared of 49 percent,” then this article is for you.)
Carleton concludes that certain statistics take longer than others to ...
The Reds have been one of the more banged-up teams in baseball through the season’s first 35ish games. Along with Oakland and Colorado, Cincinnati is one of only three clubs in the majors to play an extended amount of time without its Opening Day starter (Johnny Cueto) and at least two other members of its Opening Day starting lineup (Ryan Ludwick and Ryan Hanigan).
The Reds are 22-16 and currently sit 2.5 games back in the race for the NL Central. After sweeping the Brewers, the team has managed to calm their ever-panicky fans a tad—I realize the natural reaction of a Cincinnati fanbase is to panic at the first sight of a season going anything but perfect (since there’d be so much to panic about if the team were 20-18?), but luckily, common sense prevails. Common sense says that it’s only May and, far more importantly, common sense says ...
The walk-up song. Also known as “at-bat music,” it is the beat played as a batter approaches the plate, a tiny glimpse into the personality of each player. Some guys pick a classic—if not boring—song at the beginning of their career and stuck with it forever. Others like to adapt their choice to today’s musical stylings. A few jokesters like to find a tune fans will find ironically humorous. (This approach was successfully used by former Pittsburgh Pirate Adam LaRoche when he chose this ditty. I know this because it was the only thing of value he brought to the team.) Among the various walk-up categories, there is also the pump-up rap/rock music, the homage to the heritage tune, and the easily recognizable song that fans can sing along with.
Choosing which category and which song best encapsulates each player is something of an art form. You have to know ...
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