Everyone has perfect 20/20 hindsight. I know I do.
Some think the sweep job the Cards did was in retaliation to Brandon Phillips' name calling and some are in agreement that he should have kept his mouth shut.
If he is attempting to become public enemy No. 1, he took the correct fork in the road. After his "hulkish" posturing after leveling Nationals catcher Will Nieves, he drew the ire of Pudge Rodriguez and many Washington fans.
What are the real problems facing the Reds since the beginning of the series with the Cards?
1. Brandon Phillips to start with. Calling the team a "bunch of bitches" right after getting it handed to you is as lame as it gets. Why stir up a hornets nest after they have already hit you with a good shot in the forehead?
2. Why was Travis Wood sent to Louisville prior to the series? He has been the most effective starter we have had recently. Do the brass know something we don't? Well, it doesn't look like it.
I know somebody had to vacate a spot so we could trade Chris Dickerson (who was still on the DL) for Jim Edmonds, which is a trade that I applaud. Why wasn't Edmonds used against Adam Wainwright?
3. Wainwright is the best starting pitcher in baseball, or at least in the National League. The man is a picture of consistency.
4. The Cards showed they can both pitch and hit in the same game. The Reds couldn't do either during any of the games.
5. Scott Rolen showed his maturity by acting as peacemaker and then his loyalty for going after Chris Carpenter for talking about Dusty Baker.
6. The Cardinals won three games going away in the Reds yard, and they do not have a winning record on the road. That is distressing. The Reds end their play with the Cards in St. Louis during Labor Day weekend.
7. The Reds quickly went from the hottest team in the league to the coldest.
8. The Cardinals are this good with only two starters (position players) from their 2008 squad—Yadier Molina and Albert Pujols, and that was just two years ago.
9. Johnny Cueto was suspended for seven games. Dusty Baker and Tony LaRussa were both suspended for two games. Scott Rolen and Chris Carpenter were fined but not suspended and Reds reliever Russ Springer was also fined.
Should we panic? No, I don't think so.
Some changes need to be made or it won't get any better. I would like to see more of Edmonds as he could be a big factor down the stretch.
I don't think Jay Bruce is going to be effective wherever he is put in the lineup. His strikeout ratio is way too high. We need more production from him if he is to continue starting.
The comment about strikeouts can be cut and pasted to Drew Stubbs' account as well, in spades!
The Reds are facing one of the best pitchers in the league on Friday in Josh Johnson. I don't want to see another two-hit shutout. Do you?
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