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Author Archives: Ryan Ritchey

Cincinnati Reds State Of The Union: Is 2014 The Year?

The Cincinnati Reds are coming off of a heartbreaking season, losing in the one game playoff to the Pittsburgh Pirates. They finished third in the National League Central after winning the division in 2012. Manager Dusty Baker has been fired so the search is on for the next guy to take this team to the promise land. The Reds will most likely lose Shin-Soo Choo to free agency, and put Billy Hamilton in center field for 2014. Is 2014 the year of the Reds?

The Cincinnati Reds are coming off of a heartbreaking season, losing in the one game playoff to the Pittsburgh Pirates. They finished third in the National League Central after winning the division in 2012. Manager Dusty Baker had to be fired so a new manager could take this team to the promise land. Cincys will most likely lose Shin-Soo Choo to Free Agency, and put Billy Hamilton in center field next campaign. Is 2014 the year of the Reds?

BY Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

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For the Cincinnati Reds 2013 ended in a disappointment. The Reds won 90 games once again, finishing 3rd in the National League Central, but couldn’t get past the Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League Wild Card.

Right after the season the Reds manager Dusty Baker was fired. I could write a full post just on Dusty Baker and how many things he did right/wrong but I won’t get into that.

Billy Hamilton steals 4 bases in his 1st four Games

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Boston Red Sox 2014 Full MLB Schedule On 1 Page Post

Boston Red Sox 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Red Sox @ Orioles TBD

Tuesday April.01/2014

Off Day

Wednesday April.02/2014

Red Sox @ Orioles TBD

Thursday April.03/2014

Red Sox @ Orioles TBD

Friday April.04/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD

Saturday April.05/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD

Sunday April.06/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD Read the rest of this entry

Milwaukee Brewers 2014 MLB Season Full Schedule On 1 Post Page

Milwaukee Brewers 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Braves @ Brewers 1:10 PM

Tuesday April.01/2014

Braves @ Brewers 7:10 PM

Wednesday April.02/2014

Braves @ Brewers 12:10 PM

Thursday April.03/2014

Off Day

Friday April.04/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD

Saturday April.05/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD

Sunday April.06/2014

Brewers @ Red Sox (Interleague) TBD Read the rest of this entry

St. Louis Cardinals 2014 MLB Season Full Schedule On 1 Post Page

St. Louis Cardinals 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Tuesday April.01/2014

Off Day

Wednesday April.02/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Thursday April.03/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Friday April.04/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD

Saturday April.05/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD

Sunday April.06/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD Read the rest of this entry

Pittsburgh Pirates 2014 MLB Season Full Schedule On 1 Post Page

Pittsburgh Pirates 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Tuesday April.01/2014

Off Day

Wednesday April.02/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Thursday April.03/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Friday April.04/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD

Saturday April.05/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD

Sunday April.06/2014

Cardinals @ Pirates TBD Read the rest of this entry

Chicago Cubs 2014 MLB Season Full Schedule On 1 Post Page

Chicago Cubs 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Tuesday April.01/2014

Off Day

Wednesday April.02/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Thursday April.03/2014

Cubs @ Pirates TBD

Friday April.04/2014

Phillies @ Cubs 1:20 PM

Saturday April.05/2014

Phillies @ Cubs 3:05 PM

Sunday April.06/2014

Phillies @ Cubs TBD Read the rest of this entry

The Cincinnati Reds Full Schedule For 2014 On 1 Page Post

Cincinnati Reds 2014 Full Year Schedule On 1 Page Post

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

Monday Mar.31/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Tuesday April.01/2014

Off Day

Wednesday April.02/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Thursday April.03/2014

Cardinals @ Reds TBD

Friday April.04/2014

Reds @ Mets TBD

Saturday April.05/2014

Reds @ Mets TBD

Sunday April.06/2014

Reds @ Mets TBD Read the rest of this entry

Joe Morgan Weekend In Cincinnati: From A Fans Perspective

This weekend at Great American Ball Park was Joe Morgan Weekend. Once this was announced earlier this season, I decided that I was going to make the trip to Cincinnati from my home in Louisville, Kentucky. A part of Joe Morgan Weekend was Morgan getting his "Sculpture" out in front of the stadium. As a huge Reds fan and a historian of the Reds this was a great moment for me and my dad. The best thing about the weekend, the entire Big Red Machine made the trip, including the hit king Pete Rose.

This weekend at Great American Ball Park was Joe Morgan Weekend. Once this was announced earlier this season, I decided that I was going to make the trip to Cincinnati from my home in Louisville, Kentucky. A part of Joe Morgan Weekend was Morgan getting his “Sculpture” out in front of the stadium. As a huge Reds fan and a historian of the Reds this was a great moment for me and my dad. The best thing about the weekend, the entire Big Red Machine made the trip, including the hit king Pete Rose.

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

It was finally here, Joe Morgan Weekend.

As a life long Reds fan and a huge fan of Reds history, this was a huge weekend for me. I had it circled on my calendar since the day they announced it.

Joe Morgan was to become the sixth player in Cincinnati Reds history to have a statue put out in front of Great American Ball Park.

The other five were very good players as well, Ted Kluszewski, Ernie Lombardi, Frank Robinson, Joe Nuxhall, and Johnny Bench. Morgan would be joining great company to say the least. 

The festivities were on Friday and Saturday, but Morgan would remain for the third game on Sunday, which happened to be the Sunday Night Baseball game.

I was lucky enough to be there both Friday and Saturday for both sets of festivities and here is my perspective on each day.

Joe Morgan Speech, Unveiling of Sculpture:

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The Tampa Bay Rays Starting Pitching Is Not As Strong As It Was In 2012: They Miss James Shields!

The Tampa Bay Rays came into 2013 off of a great 2012 campaign. They finished third in the East but they did end the season with 90 wins. Doing so, they were expected to win the American League East this season. Picking up Wil Myers from the Royals for James Shields was a huge move for them. Was it a mistake now that we look back and the Rays pitching is falling apart without Shields' 200 innings.

The Tampa Bay Rays came into 2013 off of a great 2012 campaign. They finished third in the East but they did end the season with 90 wins. Doing so, they were expected to win the American League East this season. Picking up Wil Myers from the Royals for James Shields was a huge move for them. Was it a mistake now that we look back and the Rays pitching is falling apart without Shields’ 200 innings?  Tampa has many teams nipping at their heels for the 2nd Wild Card Spot in New York (2.5 Games back), Baltimore (3.0 Games Back), Cleveland (3.5 Games Back) and the Kansas City Royals are 4.5 Games Back.  They must correct their pitching for the final 3 weeks.

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

The Tampa Bay Rays rely on their pitching and defense more than any aspect of the game. Having great young pitchers is what they live by, and it has worked for their team.

But, it has been the complete opposite in 2013.

Injuries to multiple guys in the rotation has set them off track and now have to catch up to the Red Sox in the division. David Price and Matt Moore are the studs of their staff, but David Price struggled early and also went on the Disabled List along with Moore.

It is going to take a lot for them to win the division, but there is always the Wild Card, and when you are in the playoffs you never know what can happen.

Alex Cobb Hit In Head By Line Drive: Parental Guidance Advised!

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Texas Rangers: Different Year Than 2012, Or Same Result?

Yu Darvish, Adrian Beltre, Ian Kinsler, and Jurickson Profar are just a few of the great players up and down their roster. Last season they lost the American League West to the Oakland Athletics on the last day of the season. Will the same happen this season, or will their be a different result?

Yu Darvish, Adrian Beltre, Ian Kinsler, and Jurickson Profar are just a few of the great players up and down their roster. Last season they lost the American League West to the Oakland Athletics on the last day of the season. Will the same happen this season, or will their be a different result? With 25 Games left to play, and identical 79 – 58 records in the AL West, The A’s and the boys from Arlington are embattled in a tightly Division Race in 2013.

Ryan Ritchey (Featured Baseball Columnist): 

The 2012 season didn’t end as planned for the Texas Rangers. They had a five game lead over the Oakland Athletics in the American League West with nine games remaining and lost the division. It was crushing for the team and the fans.

Losing the division put them in a one game playoff with the Baltimore Orioles. Coming off the shock of losing the division, the Rangers lost to the Orioles 5-1 at home. 

Will this season be the same for the Rangers, or will there be a different result? Here are three reasons why it could be the same and three why it could be different…

Yu Darvish Dominates Diamondbacks with 14 K’s:

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Reds One And Done In 2013?

The Reds had high expectations coming into this 2013 season and things haven't gone according to plan. Between injuries and many other things, the Reds sit in third place in the National League Central.

The Reds had high expectations coming into this 2013 season and things haven’t gone according to plan. Between injuries and many other things, the Reds sit in third place in the National League Central. Ryan Ludwick has finally made his return to the lineup in the last week or so but even he isn’t tearing up opposing pitching. Todd Frazier and Zack Cozart have had below average seasons at the plate and it has hurt the Reds in the clutch. The Reds are leading the Arizona Diamondbacks for the second Wild Card spot but they need to get hot going into, what will most likely be a one game playoff.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

Coming out of last season’s meltdown in the first round of the playoffs against the Giants, you would have thought the Reds would want revenge this season.

It has been the complete opposite. This team doesn’t have any drive and are always playing with zero enthusiasm.

Injuries to Johnny Cueto, Ryan Ludwick and Sean Marshall have really hurt them this season. It has put pressure on other guys to do things they have never done in their career.

For the most part it has been good, but then again there are times where they just seemed inexperienced and it comes back to hurt them.

JJ Hoover has gone from awful at the beginning of the season, to great in the middle, and now back to awful. He is in a role he has never been in before so you can’t blame it all on him.

In the last week and a half he has given up two Grand Slams in big situations, one to Paul Goldschmidt and the other to Allen Craig. Granted they are both MVP candidates, but you can’t give up Grand Slams in the situations that he did so.

Brandon Phillips Goes Off On Reporter: Parental Guidance Advised! Explicit Language! 

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The Indians 1st Year Under Francona Should End Up A Success – Even If It Doesn’t Mean Playoffs

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Thursday August 15, 2013 

The Cleveland Indians are having a decent second half, but will it be enough to make the playoffs? It shouldn't really matter to Indians fans because they have a great future ahead of them. They have a great manager in Terry Francona and great young players in Jason Kipnis, Michael Bourn, Asdrubal Cabrera and many more.

The Cleveland Indians are having a decent second half, but will it be enough to make the playoffs? It shouldn’t really matter to Indians fans because they have a great future ahead of them. They have a great manager in Terry Francona and great young players in Jason Kipnis, Michael Bourn, Asdrubal Cabrera and many more.  The truth is that they just are not in the same competitive stratosphere as the Detroit Tigers at the present time.  They have a better chance to reel in a Wild Card Position.  As of today, they are 3.5 Games Behind Wild Card Leader #1 holder (Tampa Bay) – and are 3 Games Behind the Oakland Athletics for the 2nd spot.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer):

The Cleveland Indians have had a tremendous season under first year manager Terry Francona. It isn’t very often for a team like Cleveland to get a manager of his caliber.

Francona broke the curse in Boston, can he break the streak of Championshipless in Cleveland – since the days of Bob Feller via 1948?

I wrote an article right before the All-Star Break stating that the Indians would make a run in the second half and make the playoffs.

Well the best player on the planet Miguel Cabrera has spoiled that idea with all the Home Runs he has been hitting here lately. The Indians can’t make up any ground on the Tigers and they are running out of time.

It might not be this season but give Francona some time, he will make Cleveland a contender in no time. 

Kipnis – Inside The Park HR:

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Could There Be A Giant Miracle In San Fran This Year?

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Monday August 5, 2013

The defending champion San Francisco Giants aren't having a championship season in 2013. They are 10 games back of the National League West leading Los Angeles Dodgers. The Giants of the past relied on pitching and little offense. In 2013 they have gotten little offense and even less pitching. The bright spot for the Giants pitching staff was Tim Lincecum's 148 pitch no-hitter. It will take a miracle for them to come back but it is possible.

The defending champion San Francisco Giants aren’t having a championship season in 2013. They are 12 games back of the National League West leading Los Angeles Dodgers. The clubs of the past have relied on pitching and little offense. In 2013, they have received little offense and even less pitching. Their number one starter (Matt Cain), has had one of his worst seasons since 2008. Lights out closer Sergio Romo hasn’t been lights out – and the bullpen has been iffy at best. The bright spot for the Giants pitching staff was Tim Lincecum’s 148 pitch no-hitter. It will take a miracle for them to come back, but it is possible.  The Dodgers, despite playing lights out baseball,  continue to fight the injury bug to Hanley Ramirez and Yasiel Puig, and it SF can encounter any hotstreak, they may be able to make up a lot of ground in a short-term, being the NL West.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer):

The defending champion San Francisco Giants aren’t playing like champions in 2013. They are 12 games under .500 and are 12 games back of the National League West leading Los Angeles Dodgers.

The pitching staff has carried them to greatness, but this season it has been far from great.

They will need to tear it up in the next 3 weeks to have any chance at all. 

Once the Divisions all play each other the majority of the way, 2 NL West playing each other – will ensure at least  one team SF is chasing in the Division – will put up a ‘W’ on a nightly basis.

Chances are, they would likely need to win about 86 or 87 Games minimum to be on the cusp of a spot in the Wild Card – and hope the Dodgers play under .500 the rest of the way in. 

The Giants would need to reel off a clip of about 37 – 15 mark in their last 52 games (over.700 baseball).  Of course this not PROBABLE!

Tim Lincecum’s No – Hitter

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Blue Jays Looking To Make Moves At The Deadline

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Wednesday July.31/2013

The Toronto Blue Jays 2013 season hasn't gone as planned after the winter that they had. Picking up names like Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, and R.A Dickey to go along with Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion you would think they would be in contention for a division title. That is not the case as they are last in the American League East. The question now is if they will trade some of the big names at the deadline at 4:00 EST today.

The Toronto Blue Jays 2013 season hasn’t gone as planned after the winter that they had. Picking up names like Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, and R.A Dickey to go along with Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion you would think they would be in contention for a division title. That is not the case as they are last in the American League East. The question now is if they will trade some of the big names at the deadline at 4:00 EST today.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer):

Today at 4:00 EST is the trade deadline. It is one of the most exciting days of the Major League Baseball season because you find out if your favorite team traded for a superstar.

If you don’t have a favorite team but a favorite player you find out if he has a new home as well. The players might think about it differently but for us fans it is exciting. 

The Toronto Blue Jays made a blockbuster trade this winter picking up Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, and Emilio Bonifacio. It hasn’t worked out as planned and they are looking to move some players according to reports.

Let’s not forget they also signed Melky Cabrera and R.A. Dickey this past winter. According to reports the biggest name from the Jays that has the possibility of getting moved is Bonifacio. Let’s not forget about Buehrle as well. He also has a chance to be moved. 

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5 Things To Watch About The Reds In The 2nd Half

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Tuesday  July 30, 2013 

 Ryan Ludwick has he has been out since Opening Day with a shoulder injuryThe Cincinnati Reds are trying to make a push for a division title again in 2013 but injuries have plagued them the entire season. Getting players healthy is going to be a huge factor if they expect to win the division and go deep into the playoffs. The major piece missing is Left Fielder Ryan Ludwick as he has been out since Opening Day with a shoulder injury. The other huge piece that has been missing for much of the season has been . He has been on the shelf three different times with a lagging right lat strain. The Reds look to have him back in late August. The last and final piece that needs to get healthy is the bullpen. Guys have been filling in great but that won't last forever. Look for Sean Marshall and Jonathon Broxton to come back and help through the rest of the season and the playoffs.

The Cincinnati Reds are trying to make a push for a division title again in 2013 . but injuries have plagued them the entire season. Getting players healthy is going to be a huge factor if they expect to win the division and go deep into the playoffs. The major piece missing is Left Fielder Ryan Ludwick as he has been out since Opening Day with a shoulder injury. The other huge piece that has been missing for much of the season has been . He has been on the shelf three different times with a lagging right lat strain. The Reds look to have him back in late August. The last and final piece that needs to get healthy is the bullpen. Guys have been filling in great but that won’t last forever. Look for Sean Marshall and Jonathon Broxton to come back and help through the rest of the season and the playoffs.

By Ryan Ritchey (MLB Reports Writer):

The Cincinnati Reds are five games back of the Cardinals going into play on Thursday.

They won the first two of their series after the ALL-Star Break, taking two of three from the Pittsburgh Pirates and three of four from the San Francisco Giants. But then lost three of four against the Dodgers in LA.

The Reds are playing a three game series with the Padres now and need a sweep going into the weekend with St. Louis coming to town. 

Ryan Ludwick 2012 Highlights – Mature Lyrics So Parental Guidance Is Advised:

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Cy Young Candidates: AL + NL

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Wednesday July 17, 2013

Felix Hernandez has been the face of the Seattle Mariners since 2009 when he won 19 games for their club. He looks to be doing it again in 2013 as he has already won 10. It is the first time in his career that he has won 10 games before the All-Star Break. In 138.2 innings pitched he has struck out 140 batters and has an excellent 2.53 ERA.

Felix Hernandez has been the face of the Seattle Mariners since 2009 when he won 19 games for their club. He looks to be doing it again in 2013 as he has already won 10. It is the first time in his career that he has won 10 games before the All-Star Break. In 138.2 innings pitched he has struck out 140 batters and has an excellent 2.53 ERA.

By Ryan Ritchey (MLB Reports Writer)

The Cy Young Award is always a fun award to predict. There are always three or four great pitchers from each league that could deserve the award. But in the end only one person can get that award and that is why it is so fascinating.

This season is no different. There are three players in my mind from the American League that deserve to be candidates for the Cy Young Award.

Those three players are Bartolo Colon of the Oakland A’s, Max Scherzer of the Detroit Tigers, and Felix Hernandez of the Seattle Mariners.

Who is the front runner? Here is who I have…

First is the King, Felix Hernandez. Every season since he came into the league at the age of 19 in 2005 he has gotten better mentally and physically.

As a young pitcher, he would get frustrated easily on the mound and it would go downhill from there. This season it looks as if he has got his emotions under control and just goes out and pitches.

Hernandez is 10-4 with a 2.53 ERA in an even 20 starts. This is the first season he has won 10 games before the All-Star Break in his nine year career.

Those numbers right there are a lot better than his 13-12 Cy Young season in 2010. He always seems to stay right around a .500 record but I think this is the season he breaks out and wins 20 games for the first time.

There is just one more player better than him that deserves the award more than the King.

Bartolo Colon 2013 Highlights: Mature Lyrics – Please Use Parental Guidance Here

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MVP Candidates For The First Half: AL + NL

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Monday July 15, 2013

Chris Davis is having a breakout season for the Baltimore Orioles. He has already hit 37 Home Runs  at the ALL - Star Break (Tied 1st ALL - Time for HRs at break with Reggie Jackson in 1969 (A's) is the only person - hekeeping Miguel Cabrera from a second Triple Crown. He has always been a player that swings for the fences but this season he is connecting and sending balls a long way. Will he end up winning the Most Valuable Player Award? We will have to wait and see but here are my predictions.

Chris Davis is having a breakout season for the Baltimore Orioles. He has already hit 37 Home Runs at the ALL – Star Break (Tied 1st ALL – Time for HRs at break with Reggie Jackson in 1969 (A’s) is the only person – that is keeping Miguel Cabrera from a potential second Triple Crown.  Davis has always been a player that swings for the fences but this season he is connecting and sending balls a long way. Will he end up winning the Most Valuable Player Award? We will have to wait and see – but here are my predictions.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

The American League has three worthy candidates for the Most Valuable Player Award. Chris Davis, Max Scherzer and Miguel Cabrera. It will be a tight race until game 162 is played but here are my predictions are the first half comes to a close…

First I will start with Chris Davis. Does he deserve to win the MVP? Yes, but will he? That is a whole other question. He has the numbers that deserves the MVP.

He has already surpassed his Home Run and RBI totals from last season and has only played in 93 games. It could be the change of scenery, knowing his name will be on the line up card every day, it could be something else. We will never know.

But  there is one thing stopping him. If you took Chris Davis out of the Oriole line-up I still think they win games. They have enough fire power in other guys to survive without him.

If you are going to win the MVP you have to be the best player first for your team, and second in the entire league.

That is why I don’t have Chris Davis as my American League Most Valuable Player. There is one player better than him.

Chris Davis 2013 Highlights:

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Cincinnati Reds Got Snubbed For The ALL – Star Game

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Sunday July 14, 2013 

As we approach the All-Star Break and the teams have been selected everyone looks at who got snubbed. The Cincinnati Reds in my opinion had four players that should have made the National League All-Star team. Bruce, Choo, Leake and Latos are all worthy of All-Star Selections but this year were left off the list.

As we approach the All-Star Break and the teams have been selected everyone looks at who got snubbed. The Cincinnati Reds in my opinion had four players that should have made the National League All-Star team. Bruce, Choo, Leake and Latos are all worthy of All-Star Selections but this year were left off the list. Carlos Gonzalez injured his thumb and it is unknown if he will play in the game so Choo or Bruce could end up getting in after all.

By Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

The Cincinnati Reds have the fourth best record in the National League as of July 14th and only have three all-stars.

Those three all-stars are very deserving no doubt about it but they should have at least two more if not three. Those four players are Shin-Soo Choo, Jay Bruce, Mat Latos and Mike Leake.

Mike Leake has matched his win total from last season with 8 in just 18 games started this season. He is having one of his best seasons since he has come into the league.

He has been the second best starter on this Reds pitching staff behind Latos. Above all he deserves to be in New York for the All-Star Game. 

Shin-Soo Choo Walk Off Home Run on May 7, 2013:

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Can Cleveland Keep Pace in the Second Half?

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Sunday July 7th, 2013 

The Cleveland Indians are in second place in the American League Central 3.5 games back of the Detroit Tigers. Kipnis has come out of his shell and is leading the team in Hits, RBI, Average, and On Base Percentage. Kipnis will be an All-Star on July 16th at Citi Field. The pitching is below average ranked throughout the league but for them to keep pace with the Tigers in the second half they will have to pick it up and try to carry the team. Guys like Jimenez, Swisher, Bourn and Kazmir will have to have a great second half for the Indians to make the playoffs. As it sits right now the only way they will make the playoffs is by winning the American League Central and beating the Detroit Tigers.

The Cleveland Indians are in second place in the American League Central 3.5 games back of the Detroit Tigers. Jason Kipnis has come out of his shell and is leading the team in Hits, RBI, Average, and On Base Percentage. Kipnis will be an All-Star on July 16th at Citi Field. The pitching is below average ranked throughout the league but for them to keep pace with the Tigers in the second half they will have to pick it up and try to carry the team. Guys like Jimenez, Swisher, Bourn and Kazmir will have to have a great second half for the Indians to make the playoffs. As it sits right now the only way they will make the playoffs is by winning the American League Central and beating the Detroit Tigers.

By Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

The Cleveland Indians are three games above .500 but are still 3.5 games behind the first place Detroit Tigers after losing the first two game of the series at home.

New manager Terry Francona has done a great job with this club but he still has a lot more to do in order for them to make the playoffs. 

Big names that have produced so far this season are Jason Kipnis and Justin Masterson.

Swisher came over to Cleveland this winter by signing a four-year $56 million contract. The contract includes a fifth year vesting option worth $14 million.

Swisher has given the team a huge boost with his personality but hasn’t produced as much as wanted on the field. Only having 30 RBI has really hurt this club as it has put a lot of pressure on other guys to perform. 

Cleveland Indians 2013 Preview- MLB Network: 

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Mets And Harvey Looking Great So Far

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Tuesday April 16, 2013 

Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season may have just become the New York Mets "ace". Harvey is now 3-0 with a 0.82 ERA. Harvey has pitched 22 innings only given up 6 hits and 2 runs. " src="https://mlbreports.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/matt-harvey.jpg" width="604" height="408" /> Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season may have just become the New York Mets "ace". Harvey is now 3-0 with a 0.82 ERA. Harvey has pitched 22 Innings - only given up 6 hits and 2 runs. Not only has Harvey now become the Mets ace, the team is now winning games on a consistent basis. Winning is contagious and with Harvey pitching like he is the other pitchers want to try to match his performance every time they take the rubber. Harvey will be looking for an extension after this season as he is making the minimum of $499,000.

Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season may have just become the New York Mets “ace”. Harvey is now 3-0 with a 0.82 ERA. Harvey has pitched 22 Innings – only given up 6 Hits and 2 uns. “Matt Harvey with his stellar outings so far this season may have just become the New York Mets “ace”. Harvey is now 3-0 – with a 0.82 ERA. Harvey has pitched 22 Innings – only given up 6 hits and 2 runs. Not only has Harvey now become the Mets ace, the team is now winning games on a consistent basis. Winning is contagious and with Harvey pitching like he is the other pitchers want to try to match his performance every time they take the rubber. Harvey will be looking for an extension after this season as he is making the minimum of $499,000.

By Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

The Mets are off to 7-4 start – and the pitching is proving to be a huge factor so far this season.

Matt Harvey is leading the charge with three wins and an 0.82 ERA. He also has 25 Strikeouts in only 22 Innings! He is showing everyone that he wants to be an “ACE” on this staff.

He is Arbitration Eligible after this season and should be expecting a huge paycheck if he keeps pitching like he is right now. Mets have a bright future with Harvey and that is always a great thing for a franchise.

New York Mets 2013 Preview- MLB Network:


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Ryan Ludwick’s Injury Could Hurt The Reds For The Long Run

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Wednesday April 10, 2013

Reds left fielder Ryan Ludwick had to be taken off the field on Opening Day by trainer Paul Lessard due to a shoulder injury. He slid head first into Third Base and dislocated his right shoulder, tearing cartilage. The Reds will be without Ludwick for the next three months. Without his offensive production will the Reds stay atop of the National League Central.  The OF hit for a 3 Slash Line .275/.346/.877 - with 26 HRs and 80 RBI in just 422 At-Bats in 2012.  Ludwick signed a 2 YR deal with the Reds worth $15 MIL over the winter.

Reds left fielder Ryan Ludwick had to be taken off the field on Opening Day by trainer Paul Lessard due to a shoulder injury. He slid head first into Third Base and dislocated his right shoulder, tearing cartilage. The Reds will be without Ludwick for the next three months. Without his offensive production will the Reds stay atop of the National League Central. The OF hit for a 3 Slash Line .275/.346/.877 – with 26 HRs and 80 RBI in just 422 At-Bats in 2012. Ludwick signed a 2 YR deal with the Reds worth $15 MIL over the winter.

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): 

The Reds are off to a hot start with a 5-2 record with wins over the Angels, Nationals, and Cardinals.

Those are big wins to start out because on paper all three of those teams should make the playoffs.  It just so happened that on Opening Day against the Angels that the Reds left fielder, Ryan Ludwick, had to leave the game due to an injury. 

When the injury occurred it didn’t look to serious, but when the x-rays were taken it showed that he had dislocated his shoulder.  Along with the dislocated shoulder Ludwick had torn cartilage in his shoulder and needed surgery.

Ryan Ludwick Highlights 2012 – Mature Lyrics So Parental Guidance is Advised:

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Billy Hamilton 2013 Prospectus

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Friday April.5th/2013

Billy Hamilton stealing his first base of 2013.  The MLB has not seen a player steal 100 Bags since the likes of Vince Coleman and Rickey Henderson did the over a quarter of a century ago

Billy Hamilton stealing his first base of 2013. The MLB has not seen a player steal 100 Bags since the likes of Vince Coleman and Rickey Henderson did  over a quarter of a century ago.  Here at the M:B Reports, we think that he can run through a car wash without getting wet!

By Ryan Ritchey ( MLB Reports Writer)

In 2012 Billy Hamilton was one of the most well known Minor Leaguers in all of baseball. Starting out in A+ ball with the Bakersfield Blaze, Hamilton was looking to be on the fast track to the big leagues by September. He played in 82 games with the Blaze and hit .326 with 104 stolen bases. 

Hamilton got the call up to Pensacola (which is the AA affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds) and played in 50 games, Stealing 51 Bases. Things didn’t go as planned for him at the plate in Pensacola and he didn’t make it on the 40 man September roster for the Reds.

Billy Hamilton’s Inside the Park HR:

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Ross Detwiler: Nationals Pitcher is Underrated to Say the Least

Saturday September 22nd, 2012 

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): The Washington Nationals have one of the best pitching staffs in the majors. The reason for this is the depth they have on the staff. It is not a shock that with Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmerman, Edwin Jackson, and Ross Detwiler that the Nationals have one of the best rotations in baseball. You hear a lot about the first four guys on this list, but not much about Detwiler. I am really wondering why this is the case! Read the rest of this entry

2012 State Farm MLB All-Star Home Run Derby Preview

 

Sunday July 8th, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): The Mid-Summer Classic is upon us and this is the time for some of the best players in all of Major League Baseball to show what they got. The National League will face the American League in the State Farm Home Run Derby on July 9th. There will be four players from each league. The captain for the National League is Matt Kemp and for the American League it will be Robinson Cano.

The National League squad brings four guys that can just straight rake. Those four guys include Matt Kemp, Carlos Gonzalez, Carlos Beltran and Andrew McCutchen (a last minute replacement for the injured Giancarlo Stanton). This is a team that has a great chance to win this event with having two right-handers, a lefty and a switch hitter. Kauffman Stadium is a stadium that can see balls flying out of it completely. Beltran is going back to where his career began and where the fans hated that he left. This could become a warm welcome back for Beltran, or it could become a disappointment if he doesn’t do well.

The American League is bringing some heavy sluggers of its own to the show. Team captain Robinson Cano selected  Mark Trumbo, Jose Bautista, and Prince Fielder. Cano also picked a lefty like himself and 2 righties. This could turn out to be one of the best Home Run Derby’s EVER! So much power in one place, it could cause a power outage close to Kauffman. Cano the reigning champion has a great chance to win. I don’t believe he does though.

My predicted champion of the 2012 State Farm Home Run Derby is Carlos Beltran! Beltran coming back to Kansas City has a breakout day and wins by 4 homers. In a close second is Jose Bautista making up for his performance last season. The National League ends up winning the challenge as well. The underdog to keep an eye on is Mark Trumbo. This guy has some serious power and could end up making a believer out of many. But first-timers tend to get a little nervous, especially the young ones. With poise and experience, look for Carlos Beltran to have some home run fun on Monday night.

Ryan Ritchey is a Baseball Writer & Reds Expert for MLB reports. I am a freshman at Spalding University, Assistant Baseball Coach and plan on studying sports journalism. I am a huge fan of Barry Larkin and Brandon Phillips. Have been a baseball fan my whole life and have been writing about baseball since my freshman year of High School. You can reach me on Twitter (@baseballaddicts)

Please e-mail us at: mlbreports@me.com with any questions and feedback.  You can follow us onTwitter and become a fan on Facebook.  To subscribe to our website and have the Daily Reports sent directly to your inbox, click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

The Reds Sunday Select – Mesoraco vs. Grandal: Did the Reds Make the Right Choice? Plus the Billy Hamilton Report

Sunday July 8, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Reds Expert): Welcome back to the 2nd edition of Reds Sunday Select. As the All-Star Break approaches, the weekend will be filled with All-Star Weekend previews. This week I have a little sympathy for the catchers out there with this one. The big debate around Reds country is: did Walt Jocketty keep the right catcher for the future? It is my job to debate this and I am going to do just that. The two catchers I am talking about are Devin Mesoraco and Yasmani Grandal. Yasmani was given up to the Padres in the Mat Latos trade over the winter. Yes the Reds picked up a pitcher that become an ace in the present and future. But did they send the wrong catcher in the deal?

Lets start out with the positives of keeping Mesoraco, as I am in a positive mood at the moment. Mesoraco is a solid young catcher with some pop in his bat. He can become one of the top catchers in the National League, hit 15 homers and be solid behind the dish. The only problem is that he is splitting time with Ryan Hanigan, who in my mind is the right guy for the job at the moment. Mesoraco on the bright side has a lot more power than Hanigan does. The downfall to that statement is that he also strikes out a lot, and does not currently have the ability to hit for average. Mesoraco, who strikes out almost double the amount of times he walks, isn’t the kind of hitter you want hitting in front of the pitcher. You want a contact guy who can get on base in front of the pitcher, so he has a chance to bunt him into scoring position. Hanigan is that strong OBP kind of guy. Read the rest of this entry

Reds Sunday Select: Is Dusty Baker the Right Manager in Cincy? And the Premiere of the Billy Hamilton Report

Sunday July 1st, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer, Reds Expert): Welcome to the premiere of Reds Sunday Select. This is going to be a segment on the Reports in which I post a weekly article on the Reds organization. At the end of each article, you will find an update on the up-and-coming star prospect for the Reds, Billy Hamilton. This week on the Reds Sunday Select is Dusty Baker and the job that he has done so far running this Reds team.

Dusty Baker has been in Cincinnati since ’08 and has yet to win a playoff game. He has made it to the playoffs once, in 2010 on the back of Joey Votto‘s MVP season. In Dusty’s 19 seasons as a manager, he has a 17-22 record in the playoffs, which in my opinion isn’t getting the job done. He has never won a World Series title, falling short back in ’02 with a 7-game series loss to the Angels. Do I believe Dusty Baker is a great manager? Yes I do. He has a strong career winning record as a manager. Which tells me he can win games, but just not get it done in the playoffs- which is where it really matters. Read the rest of this entry

Joey Votto: The Best Cincinnati Reds Player Ever?

Friday June 15th, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): Joey Votto is in his 6th season in the majors and he looks to become one of the best there is in the league. Votto back in 2010 won the National League Most Valuable Player Award with amazing numbers. Racking up 37 home runs, 113 RBIs, along with a .424 on base percentage. The on-base percentage says it all when it comes to Votto. He just isn’t the type of player that just hits homers. He also takes a lot of walks and hits well to the opposite field, which gives him many doubles along the way. He hits so well to the opposite field that the opposing team can’t play a shift making it even harder to defend Votto. Not only is he a great hitter, but he is undoubtedly one of the best first baseman in the National League. He is also starting to make the claim of best player in the entire game.

Votto has played in 61 games this season and already has 27 doubles. This leads the entire major leagues. Votto is an unbelievable hitter to the left side which makes him an even better player. 76 hits already should let him get over 200 for the first time in his career, as long as he doesn’t start getting intentionally walked every time at-bat. A good sign for Votto this season is he has more walks than strikeouts. This could be the season that Votto carries the Reds far into the postseason. Read the rest of this entry

Posey or Wieters: Which Young MLB Catcher Has the Bigger Upside? The Friday Faceoff

Friday June 1, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): A couple of years ago the Minnesota Twins were talking about moving Joe Mauer to first base, to save his legs. Since he was such a great hitter, the Twins were looking to preserve his bat. That never did happen and the Twins are going down really fast and so is Mauer. The only thing Mauer has been really good for lately is making commercials for Head and Shoulders shampoo and one-liners from video game ads. Joe Mauer has played 9 seasons in the majors and does not have 100 career home runs. Yes he hits for a very high average. But he was supposed to be a great overall hitter. In my opinion, this home-grown Minnesota boy stayed behind the dish too long and now he will never be the same offensive player that he was in ’09. Injuries have taken their toll and the Mauer decline began far sooner than most expected.

The big question for the next two big young catchers is whether they going to stay behind the dish, or undertake a postion change to save their legs…and bats. Buster Posey and Matt Wieters are no doubt the best young catchers in the game right now. Some will look at Mike Napoli, Brian McCann and Alex Avila for that title. But for actual youth, production and potential, Posey and Wieters are the next big things. The only thing is how long will they actually be catchers. If I’m in either the Giants or Orioles front office, I move them as soon as possible. The catcher position is one of the hardest positions in the game and leaving either Posey or Wieters behind the plate too long could prove detrimental. Just look at Joe Mauer as an example of what could happen if you wait. Read the rest of this entry

Brandon is Out of His League as Seattle Changes Closers

Tuesday May 29th, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer):  There is bad news in Seattle and that is Brandon League has been taken out of his ninth inning role for the Mariners. League who has been struggling to get the job done lately, hasn’t lost his closer’s role permanently. He just needs to work on his command for the time being in non-save situations. League has blown 4 saves in 13 chances this season and the Mariners want to work with him to see if they can change that. The same thing happened last season with League, when he was taken out of the closer role to work on mechanics. He ended up finishing the year with 37 saves. For a closer that is what you call a successful season.

The Mariners aren’t naming another closer because as manager Eric Wedge put it: “Brandon is our closer. We’ll match up with what we think works”. The Mariners only have 7 guys in the bullpen and they could end using up to 6 of them, depending on the situation, in the ninth inning. Using the closer by committee could help the Mariners while League works on command, or it could end up putting them in a worse hole to dig out of in the West. We will just have to see how long it takes League to get back to his game saving ways.

The Mariners are doing everything they can to get League’s command back, as he threw an extended bullpen yesterday. With this being said, League should be back in the closer’s role in a couple of weeks. He is doing everything he can to regain his command and that is all Wedge is asking of him. “The same thing happened last year”, Wedge said. This is nothing new for League- so it should be a quick fix.

The candidates for the job in League’s absence are Tom Wilhelmsen, Charlie Furbush and Lucas Luetge. Wilhelmsen is going to see the most attempts. This should be a great few weeks for him to get a chance to show what he’s got in the ninth and maybe become trade bait come July. Good luck to Brandon League on regaining his form. The Mariners are counting on League to become once again a valuable trading chip at the deadline, with League looking to cash in during the free agency the coming offseason. We hope to see League back in the ninth inning soon.

Ryan Ritchey is a Baseball Writer for MLB reports. I am a high school senior, play second base and plan on studying sports journalism in college. I am a huge fan of Barry Larkin and Brandon Phillips. Have been a baseball fan my whole life and have been writing about baseball since freshman year. You can reach me on Twitter (@Ryan13Ritchey)

Please e-mail us at: mlbreports@me.com with any questions and feedback.  You can follow us on Twitterand become a fan on Facebook.  To subscribe to our website and have the Daily Reports sent directly to your inbox, click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.

Indians Off to Another Strong Start – But This Time, Will it Last?

Sunday May 27th, 2012

Ryan Ritchey (Baseball Writer): The Cleveland Indians are off to a hot start for the second straight season. Last year it didn’t last… and the team ended up falling apart. What is going to happen this season? Will the pitching stay strong until the end of the season or fall off the map when it most counts? Asdrubal Cabrera has come down with a pulled hamstring in the past week and will be out. This could really end up affecting the team, or he could come back soon and be fine. The thing about a hamstring is that it can be a nagging injury, if it doesn’t fully heal properly. If I’m Manny Acta, I sit Cabrera until he is fully healthy.

To answer some of the above questions, I believe the starting pitching will last past the All-Star Break and the Cleveland Indians will have a shot at the AL Central crown. With Ubaldo Jimenez, Justin Masterson, and veteran Derek Lowe the Indians pitching staff is one of the best in its division.  Or at least it should be on paper. Derek Lowe with a 3.25 ERA and 6wins has been a horse for the Indians. The biggest surprise thus far for this team is Chris Perez, who has 16 saves in 17 chances. With a sweep of the Tigers this past week, the Indians made a statement in the American League Central. They are ready to show that least year was no fluke and that Cleveland is ready to return to the promised land. The MLB playoffs. With another Wild Card added this year, the Indians have to like their chances at postseason glory. Read the rest of this entry

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