Well,we can say we've been better than previous years.Just be satisfied with what we've got reds fans.Remember the years where the following(Chris Reistma,Paul Wilson,Jimmy Haynes) were all expected to lead the club?Yeah I know,those were ugly times.So I guess you can say the starting pitching situation is looking up.
What has plagued the reds for years has been their consistent inconsistency.Last year,they could not hiit for Bronson,they gave him no run support,he did not win a start for almost 3 months,which was brutally pathetic,considering in several of those games he gave up one run and the offense scored 1 or 0,or he had a large lead and the bullpen gave it up(that would be you Todd Coffey,Gary Majewski,and others).
Arroyo's numbers last year:
4.23 ERA 9 wins 15 losses 156 strikeouts 63 walks 28 HR's allowed,and 210.2 IP.
Now so far this year:
5.61 ERA 4 wins 5 losses 69 IP 65 Strikeouts 28 walks 1.68 WHIP
His breaking ball just isn't quite breaking as much this year.He's not playing better,he's getting worse.So much for being the 2 starter we envisioned him as.
Aaron Harang, after coming to Cincy in 2003,has been pretty much the ace since,came into this season as the surefire,go to ace.He is a great pitcher with great stuff but is very underrated.But Harang is suffering the Arroyo plague,the reds are not scoring runs for him,and he's usually the guy who gives the hitters a boost in the dugout,they usually respond well to him pitching.Now take a look at his stats from last year compared to this year.
Harangs stats last year:
16 wins 6 losses 3.73 ERA 231.2 IP 34 GS 218 Strikeouts
3.86 ERA 2 wins 8 losses 78 strike outs 1.29 WHIP 12 HR allowed 20 walks .244 BAA
Harang's W-L record really doesn't deserve to be as miserable as it is,and he deserves better.We all know Harang isn't in a funk,and the reds hitters need to wake up the bats for him.
Yes,we hear all this wonderful stuff about Cueto,he was our next Mario Soto,
and he would probably make the jump from A ball to the Majors.In his first start,he set the bar very high for himself,and as an inexperienced rookie,can't be expected to maintain the dominance he achieved in that game.But when Cueto really gets on his game,look out,he's pretty darn good.The reds are still eying his pitch count carefully as they are Edinson Volquez(how unlike a Dusty Baker team).
Now to Volquez
Volquez was the #1 pitching prospect in the Texas Rangers organization,he was their prized pitcher,and ace of the future.But neither team knowing so,the greatest move the reds made last year was picking up Josh Hamilton in the rule 5 draft off the cubs in a prearranged deal.And with Hamilton,whom the Rangers really thought highly of,the reds had their bait this olast offseason to trade for Volquez.Really this worked out well for both.Sure you say,Texas got the better side of the deal,Hamilton has had a torrid start to the season,but the reds got just who they wanted for the staff,never budging on who they wanted in exchange for Hamilton.Now,the way it looks,I know this is premature,but you have a future MVP here,and a winner of Cy Young awards to come.
Volquez's stats this year:
1.32 ERA (best in Majors) has not given up more than 2 ER in any start this season,and I'm pretty sure has only given up 2 once.
8 wins 2 losses 75 IP 91 Strike outs 1.16 WHIP(that number will decrease as he walks less people and gains control) as you can see 38 walks in 12 GS 3 HR's allowed 15 runs 11 ER and a .188 BAA.Volquez has been nothing short of dominant his year.
The rest is up for grabs:
Belisle held a spot,but I've been one of the guys who's never liked him,and am glad they had enough sense to send him down to the minors.
Fogg,....ohh geez Fogg.Does a 9.85 ERA in 4 GS sum it up for you?
And as for Homer Bailey,another top prospect and before this year,was supposed to be the next great Redleg pitcher,he's been in the minors all year.His stats weren't too bad last year,considering the pressure he had on him.
Homer's stats(and thankfully his name does not give indication of what type of hits he gives up)
(stats from last year,been in Triple A this year)
4 wins 2 losses 5.76 ERA 9 GS 45.1 IP 3 HR's allowed 20 walks.
Well it took them long enough to promote him,question is:is he in their plans for the future?They tried to trade him to get Joe Blanton,put him on the table,but the A's didn't budge,if the A's are still looking to rebuild(which it always seems they are)they may take another look at this trade,and Joe Blanton may provide a solid arm in the 3 spot in the rotation.
So no,at least the starting pitching hasn't been as bad as it's been over the years,if anything,things are looking up in Cincinnati.