Cincinnati Reds: Week 10 Player Power Rankings
After a week since the last power rankings, we arrive at a very familiar position: The Reds are still 7.5 games out of first and three games back of the wild card.
After a disappointing series defeat at the hands of baseball's hottest team, the San Francisco Giants, and a series victory over one of baseball's worst, the Philadelphia Phillies, the Reds find themselves still running in place along the hamster wheel.
Only now, Joey Votto and Mat Latos are both on minor league rehab stints. Both are close to returning to the Reds and making them whole for the first time all year.
But that's for another article. For now, here are the Reds player power rankings. If you are new to the list, the formula is simple.
The power rankings are merely meant to provide a snapshot image of which Reds are contributing the most. Because it's only a snapshot of the last week, don't be surprised to see Reds rising and falling at a high degree. Just one bad performance from a starter can take him from No.1 on this list to not even ranked. Staying ranked requires continued contribution.
There's very little that's scientific about this list, but each Red included will have a case as a top-10 contributor. Without further ado, here are the power rankings from the last seven days of Reds baseball.
No.10: Devin Mesoraco (Last Week No. 3)
Devin Mesoraco clings to the power rankings, falling all the way from No.3 to No.10 this week. It was a rough week at the plate for the Reds' break-out catcher. He recorded only one hit, which was a home run for two RBI, and had eight strikeouts compared to just one walk.
But it's what Mesoraco did defensively that has him still in the mix. Mesoraco was a run exterminator at the plate yesterday, as he was at the center of some marvelous relays and put-outs at the plate. Mesoraco and his glove were instrumental in keeping the Phillies off the board and securing a win.
No.9: Alfredo Simon (Last Week Unranked)
After a towering fall from grace, Alfredo Simon has once again made it to the Reds power rankings. "Big Pasta" only pitched one game last week, but his six innings and three earned runs were all the Reds needed to take a pivotal game of the Phillies series.
Simon is 8-3 on the year with an ERA of 3.15. With Latos nearly back in the rotation, the Reds will have options with this right-hander. Will he move back to the bullpen? Will he push Cingrani to the bullpen? Or is this surprise of 2014 enough to use as trade bait and secure a bat?
Either way, it's a good problem to have.
No.8: Logan Ondrusek (Last Week Unranked)
Logan Ondrusek makes his first ever appearance on the Reds player power rankings. The tall right-hander, along with other bullpen arms, struggled mightily out of the gate. But Ondrusek has rebounded strong with some notable consecutive appearances last week.
Ondrusek worked 4.1 innings of work and allowed no earned runs. He surrendered three hits and one walk, but neutralized that with four strikeouts, making his WHIP for last week a promising .92.
His ERA on the year is still 4.43, but just like many others behind the gate, it's trending down.
No.7: Aroldis Chapman (Last Week No.8)
Aroldis Chapman saw three innings of work last week over a span of three games. The flame throwing closer has been on his game. He recorded two saves last week, struck out six and didn't allow a hit or walk.
In 13 innings of work on the year, Chapman's WHIP is an impressive 0.54. He's only allowed four hits on the season. Broxton and Chapman are shortening games for this Reds team and have been imperative in the bullpen revival.
No.6: Jonathan Broxton (Last Week No.4)
Jonathan Broxton falls to No. 6 in this week's rankings at no fault of his own. The big man only pitched 1.2 innings throughout two games, but once again allowed no runs. Broxton only has one earned run on the year, which came at the hands of the NL's No.1 offense back in May.
Broxton has been at the center of a bullpen revival. After finishing April as one of baseball's worst bullpens, the Reds' relievers have climbed to a better No. 22 rank, and are trending up.
That's now three consecutive bullpen arms occupying the Reds' power rankings, a promising sign moving forward.
No.5: Brandon Phillips (Last Week No. 9)
His week included five hits, two doubles and two RBI. He crossed the plate three times as well. Another notable mark from last week is that Phillips only struck out twice.
Phillips and his .269 batting average on the year make him the third best hitter on this team right now. He's third in RBI and has the most doubles on the team thus far.
No. 4: Billy Hamilton (Last Week Unranked)
Billy Hamilton played a pivotal role in the Reds offense last week, as is expected of any team's table-setter. His role in the only victory the Reds would grab in a three-game series with the Giants was enormous, as he was constantly causing chaos across the Giants' infield.
His role in the second game was just as enormous, though silently. Hamilton was thrown out stealing third with no outs immediately before Frazier launched a home run. With Hamilton at second, the Reds would have ultimately had enough runs to match the Giants in what would eventually be a 3-2 defeat.
Just something to ponder.
But for the week, Hamilton hit .261, recording six hits, a home run, three RBI, four runs scored and three stolen bases.
Hamilton's season mark of .253 at the plate is No. 6 on the team in that category, but his .288 OBP is No. 10, which isn't what you want from the leadoff guy. He has just 10 walks compared to 40 strikeouts.
No.3: Jay Bruce (Last Week Unranked)
The Reds' Week 4 was the last time we saw Jay Bruce make this list. That was back near the end of April, before the Reds would sink to the bottom of the offensive categories and the team's collective OBP would fall beneath .300.
While many considered Bruce's contributions minimal at best because of his .211 batting average on the season, there is no denying the difference having this slugger in the lineup makes.
In the last week, Bruce is batting .300 with a .318 OBP. In that span, Bruce has recorded six hits, including two doubles, a home run and a team-leading six RBI.
A healthy Jay Bruce, to complement a healthy Joey Votto, appears to be just what the doctor ordered for this struggling Reds offense.
No. 2: Homer Bailey (Last Week No. 6)
Homer Bailey's ERA is falling faster than the NASDAQ. Last week, the Reds right-hander worked 14 innings and allowed just four earned runs. He pitched a quality start after going six innings and allowing three earned runs against the Giants before throwing a gem in the series finale against the Phillies, which included eight innings and one earned run.
Bailey was also responsible for the first two of the Reds' go-ahead runs in his last start.
His ERA on the year now rests at 4.60. While still high, that's down from 8.31.
With Bailey's return to form and Latos on the horizon, the Reds might have enticing options due to a crowded rotation. Whether it's bullpen assistance or an arm to deal at the deadline, this is good news for a recovering Reds team.
No. 1: Todd Frazier (Last Week No. 1)
For the second straight week, a bat sits atop the Reds player power rankings. Todd Frazier has been pivotal to the little offensive success experienced of late. In the last seven days, Frazier has had a team-leading eight hits, which include three home runs and three RBI along with seven runs scored himself.
All of that amounts to a .381 batting average for Frazier last week with a .435 OBP. While Frazier is technically second on the team in batting average behind slugger Devin Mesoraco, it's worth noting that Frazier has nearly twice the amount of games as the Reds' catcher.
He is the only Reds player to have played in 60 games this year, and his .279 average, team-high 32 RBI and team-leading 13 home runs on the season make Frazier the most prolific Red in uniform.
Dropped from Reds Player Power Rankings
Johnny Cueto (last week No. 2)
Brayan Pena (last week No. 5)
Mike Leake (last week No. 7)
J.J. Hoover (last week No. 10)
Jay Bruce (last week unranked)
Johnny Cueto (last week No. 2)
On the Cusp
All stats courtesy of ESPN.com.