Some Reds preformed better than others in the first half of the season.
This MLB season is already over halfway over, and the Reds have certainly had their ups and downs. From starting 7-2 to being 10-10 just 12 days later, multiple weeks without a win, and losing 14 of 16 right before winning or tying their last four series before the all-star break.
There have been bright spots and disappointments, studs, duds, and everything in between.
Here, grades will be given out to players based on their performance in the first half of the season.
Obviously some did better than others, but who earned the best grades? Who earned to worst? Read on to find out.
Barnhart is having the best offensive season of his career, posting a slash line of .273/.337/.401. He’s also doing all of this without compromising his defense, his biggest strength.
Barnhart has made tremendous strides this season and has helped keep the rotation from being any worse than it has been.
If Barnhart can keep hitting this well, look for him to be the everyday catcher moving forward.
Devin Mesoraco: C-
They say the best ability is availability, and Mesoraco hasn’t been that. He wasn’t able to play until almost May, and he is currently back on the DL.
Having played in only 40 games this season, Mesoraco hasn’t exactly impressed with his bat either, posting a line of .234/.333/.459.
If Mesoraco can get healthy and his numbers up, he could form a very good duo with Barnhart. If not, who knows what will happen with him.
Joey Votto, 1B: A+
Votto quite possibly just had the best first half ever of his playing career. He showed he’s an all-around hitter by posting a line of .315/.427/.631 with 26 homeruns and 68 RBIs and an OPS of 1.058.
He ranks first or tied for first in the NL in HRs, OPS and SLG. He’s third in the NL OBP (less than .005 behind first) and RBIs and eighth in the NL in batting average.
Simply, Votto is having a great year in a league full of great hitters, as is evidenced by being named an All-Star. It will be interesting to see how his place in the MVP discussion changes should the Reds make a playoff run.
Jose Peraza, 2B: B-
Peraza, though he continues to be good enough on defense has still struggled at the plate this season.
His .254/.278/.334 line and .612 OPS are cause for concern, as he seems to be stagnating at the plate. Peraza has only drawn five walks to this point, and the fact that his average is already low makes that fact worse.
He will be given time to develop, but unless he starts making noticeable improvements at the plate, it will tough for him to play everyday.
Zack Cozart, SS: A
The only knock against Cozart is that he was injured for a little bit, other than that, it’s hard to make a case against him having a career year.
Each of the numbers in his .316/.394/.547 slash line represent career highs, as well as his .941 OPS. He also has nine homeruns and 35 RBIs, showcasing a well-rounded game.
Cozart’s average is good for best on the team and sixth in the NL. His OPS is also 10th best on the senior circuit. Cozart is having an incredible year, and being named an All-Star starter is just more proof.
Eugenio Suarez, 3B: B
Despite posting a .254 average, Suarez is still posting a strong season at the plate, thanks to a .358 OBP, .437 SLG, and .796 OPS to go along with 12 HRs and 44 RBIs.
Suarez is very patient at the plate, as evidenced by his 43 walks this season. If he can cut down on his strikeouts (81 in 86 games), his numbers should only go up.
He does all of this while providing top notch defense at the hot corner, something that cannot be under valued
Overall Infield: A-
Adam Duvall, LF: A
Let’s get this out of the way: Duvall should be an all-star.
He is tied for the NL lead in outfield assists with seven, has a line of .278/.321/.557 and an OPS of .878 to go with 20 HRs and 61 RBIs.
Duvall is a do-it-all left-fielder who has preformed very well this year. He has preformed well enough to hold down the everyday job through the last season and a half, and there is no reason he shouldn’t continue to do so.
Billy Hamilton, CF: B
Billy Hamilton’s defense and prowess on the basepaths are why his grade is this high. He ranks at the top of the NL in stolen bases with 38. He’s made highlight reel catches. But his ability at the plate is concerning.
Hamilton is posting a line of just .242/.296/.321 with an OPS of just .617. With as much speed as Hamilton has, even getting on base just this much makes him valuable. However, he’ll need to work on getting on if he wants a role when his speed diminishes.
For now, what Hamilton is doing is working, and hopefully he’ll find ways to get on base more frequently.
Scott Schebler, RF: B+
Schebler is played well enough to hold down the starting spot in right field this season, posting a .254/.327/.529 line and an OPS of .856.
His defense isn’t the best, but it’s good enough to make him a solid defender who can occasionally make the spectacular play.
His 22 HRs and 44 RBIs have helped the Reds find a consistent bat who can help fill the void left behind when they traded Jay Bruce. He hasn’t completely filled it, but he’s done an admirable job so far.
Overall Outfield: B+
4. Utility Players:
Scooter Gennett: A+
For only having a part-time role, Gennett has preformed as well as anyone else on the roster. Having a line of .311/.363/.603 with a .966 OPS is impressive for anyone, much less a player claimed off waivers a couple days before the season.
His four HR game will be remembered for a long time, and Gennett has provided a spark when the Reds have needed it.
Not bad for a guy who was basically an after-thought to start the season.
Kivlehan hasn’t done much to show he deserves to be much more than a backup, but he’s proved reliable enough to play in 62 games so far this year.
In 93 ABs this season, Kivlehan has notched 20 hits, good for a .215 average. His .292 OBP and 10 walks suggest he has plate discipline, but isn’t able to put the bat on the ball enough.
His defense has been good enough in the outfield, where he’s primarily played, to keep him Cincinnati for the time being.
Alcantara has posted anemic numbers at the plate this year: .217/.226/.313 with a dismal .549 OPS in 83 ABs.
Unlike Kivlehan, Alcantara doesn’t so signs of good discipline, only drawing one walk so far compared to 30 strikeouts.
Alcantara may be serviceable some day, but for now it looks like he needs to go back to Louisville.
Utility Overall: B-
Scott Feldman: B-
For being the ace, Feldman sure hasn’t preformed like one. A 7-6 record with a 3.94 ERA is good for a fourth or fifth starter.
It’s not good for someone who is supposed to be at the top of the rotation. Feldman has been better than expected to this point, though.
And if the rest of the rotation can get healthy, he won’t have to be at the top anymore.
Luis Castillo: B
Castillo has preformed admirably in his four starts this after he bypassed AAA and went straight to the majors from AA.
He features a three pitch arsenal that boosts an electric fastball with above average off-speed offerings and very good command.
His 3.13 ERA through 23 IP is encouraging, and his 30 strikeouts in that time is as well. With some more time in the majors, Castillo could become a valuable 2 or 3 starter.
Homer Bailey: C
Bailey has made a mixed bag worth of starts, going 1.2 IP and giving up 8 runs in his first start, to going 3.0 IP and giving up 6 runs, to only giving up one run in each of his last two starts, both of which went six innings or longer.
He still has an 8.31 ERA, but that’s much better than the 43.20 after his first game back.
He gets a C because of his last two performances, and it could change in a big way depending on how he finishes the year.
Tim Adleman: D
Adleman has had a rough year by any standard, going 5-6 with a 4.71 ERA. He has been steady in that he has made all of his starts, but not much beyond that.
His 77 Ks in 84 IP is good, as is his consistency in making starts.
Don’t look for him make this many appearances in the future though.
Incompletes: (Due to various reasons)
Bronson Arroyo and Brandon Finnegan (DL), Amir Garrett, Rookie Davis, Sal Romano, Cody Reed, and Jackson Stephens (extended stretches in minors)
Starting Pitching Overall: D-, the only reason is doesn’t fail is because it’s looking better
Michael Lorenzen: B+
Lorenzen has been mostly great in his role as a setup man, posting a 2.93 ERA in 46.0 IP.
If the team can start winning more games, look for the Reds to use him more frequently.
Peralta has been solid all season long, posting a 3.10 ERA in 40.2 IP so far this year.
His role, like Lorenzen, should expand should the team start winning more, as he has been one of the most reliable guys in the ‘pen this year.
Blake Wood: C-
Wood, though consistent, hasn’t posted the best numbers so far. Still, his 4.43 ERA isn’t horrible and he’s struck out 42 batters in 40.2 IP.
Wood should be in the bullpen for a while if he can keep it up.
Tony Cingrani: B+
Cingrani has quietly been putting put solid numbers in a top bullpen in the league, posting a 2.70 ERA with 16 strikeouts in 16 IP.
Cingrani, along with everyone previously mentioned, will more more appearances should the team get more leads late in games.
Raisel Iglesias: A+
Iglesias has put together a spectacular year so far, converting 16 of 17 save attempts while striking out 52 in 42.2 IP.
There’s rumors about the Nationals being interested in acquiring him. However, with Iglesias pitching this well and him under team control for three more seasons, it would take a king’s ransom at this point.
It looks like the Reds have found their closer of the future.
Overall Bullpen: A-
6. Overall Team: C+
If the starting pitching wasn’t so bad to this point, the Reds would be in the thick of the playoff race. The hitting and bullpen pitching are both above average, and if the starters can pick up the slack, this team will be dangerous. If the rotation can turn it around in the last 10 weeks, this team could be interesting to watch come September.