I would like to start off by thanking the good people over at Redlegnation.com for sharing my article on the Reds (albeit a critical one) earlier today. I’ve had a ton of traffic come through this evening and it is a direct result of their support. They’ve been at it since 2005, and are certainly the first place I go to find quality, independent analysis of America’s first professional baseball team.
Over the next two weeks, I’m going to run “Three Headlines for 2017” in an effort to highlight a few of the most intriguing players or storylines from each team as we head into the 2017 season. Because of the support shown from the fans of the Queen City baseball club, I’m going to start with the Reds.
3 Reasons to Believe
1. “Amir Garrett develops into a frontline starter”
This kid is going to be a frontline starter for an organization that desperately needs one. With Homer Bailey ailing and Anthony DeSclafani likely heading to the DL to start the season, Garrett is a near lock to make the starting rotation. I’m excited to see the 6’5″ lefty, who deals at a blistering pace, refine his mechanics and grow into a professional pitcher. If I were a Reds fan, I would keep a watchful on eye on Garrett’s development this season.
2. “Jose Peraza becomes a vital part of the Cincinnati offense”
Peraza is going to take over full-time duties at second base this season and he is like a Billy Hamilton, but a real baseball player.
You’re right, that wasn’t very nice, but it might be true. Hamilton is one a trick pony while Peraza is a legitimate ballplayer. Peraza flashed signs of brilliance during his rookie season (more like half of a season) and is expected to be a main cog in the rebuilding process. Peraza has hit at every level on his way to the Majors and is electric on the base paths. The 22 year-old Venezuelan should excite Reds fans for years to come.
3. “Out of the quicksand”
Take a deep breath, diehard Reds fan. The worst of the losing is over. While the club’s record may not improve much this year, there is hope on the horizon. Garrett, Peraza, Jesse Winker, Nick Senzel and maybe even Cody Reed are here to guide the Reds into a successful future. No fan can stomach watching a team stuck in neutral, but this is no longer the case in Cincinnati. The Reds are moving in the right direction and they have some special young players to watch. Enjoy the season.
Check back tomorrow for a “Three Headlines for 2017” feature on the Atlanta Braves. I’ll be progressing through the Major Leagues from the earliest professional team (Reds, then the Braves) through the newest organizations (Rays and Diamondbacks).