][The Real Mccoy]
Willy Taveras is proving to be a pretty big igniter for the Cincinnati Reds. The man they’re starting to call “Willy T” in Cincy collected 5 base hits last night (all were leading off an inning) and extended his hitting streak to 13 games. His On Base Percentage is now in the .375 territory which is what you strive for as a leadoff hitter. He’s been a huge reason for this little run that the Redlegs have went on in winning 4 of their last 5.
He wasn’t the only contributor. The Reds pounded out 13 runs and 18 hits, both season highs. But you knew the Reds were going to have some success. Jon Garland is the type of righty that the Reds are going to beat all year long.
A few other little things that stood out as I watched this ballgame:
-Jay Bruce had a tough 0 for 5 night. Now he’s not struggling. He’s not striking out and he’s hitting balls hard right at people. That .250 average is one that is a tendency to rise average, so put an asterisk by it. It really is. I wanna mention how he’s playing right field. The guy threw out Eric Byrnes early in the game to earn his MLB leading 5th outfield assist of the season. He’s also made about 5 plays in right field this season that are gold glove quality along with making every play he should make. His defense has been unbelievable this season thus far. I’d rank him among the top 4 or 5 defensive right fielders in baseball right now.
-Bunny Arroyo won his 5th game and ate up some innings. He also singled and scored. The guy isn’t throwing very well, and he had some ‘bombs away’ moments where everything he threw got laced. But, you have to mention that he won his 5th game somehow. When Arroyo is on the mound the Reds are scoring enough to supplement his shitty pitching. He still seems to be a weak link in the rotation but when Arroyo is your weak link, that is a good thing. That’s saying something about the rest of your staff. There’s worse weak links in baseball starting rotations then Arroyo.
-Adam Rosales had the night of his life thus far. Rosales homered and doubled twice. His enthusiasm jumps off the screen at you and while it might annoy me at times, I like how he’s coming along. Things might get interesting if he continues to get extra base hits and plug along at a .300 clip when Edwin Encarnacion comes back.
-Jerry Hairston seems to be getting rolling. And with him and Taveras getting on base a high amount of the time in the 1 and 2 spots in the order, Votto, Bruce, and Phillips are going to look better then they should. Phillips is looking better at the plate and Votto is doing what Votto does. He’s hitting everything in sight and it’s all falling in for him right now.
-Justin Upton extended his hitting streak to 18 games with a home run. The high praise I gave him on this very blog might have been a year early when I said he was going to be like Albert Pujols was during his rookie year, but now you’re seeing what I meant. He’s got as much power from the right side as anyone in the game and he’s 21 years old. Love watching this kid play. He’s a gamer. Arizona might have a tough year but they have to be happy with the progression this guy is making.