Chad Dotson’s assertion that Homer Bailey should be in the Reds Hall of Fame was certainly on target after Bailey’s second career no-hitter against the Giants on Monday night. And to his credit, Chad is the only media source I can find that threw that gem into the mix in the aftermath of Homer’s dominating performance.
True, Bailey is still just 27 and his overall statistics aren’t Reds HOF-worthy. But the sheer fact of his two no-hitters within a nine month span for the oldest professional baseball franchise demands his consideration. When you add the way he closed the 2012 season and pitched in Game 3 of the playoffs last year against San Francisco, Bailey has strung together some strong performances on the mound.
I would also add Bronson Arroyo’s name to the list. Arroyo’s statistics for starting pitchers since 2006 are among the best in baseball for innings pitched and wins. Further, his Game 2 one-hitter (over 7 innings) of the Giants was one of the best-pitched post season games in Cincinnati history, rivaling that of Jose Rijo (Game 4, 1990 WS) and Don Gullett (Game 1, 1976 WS, Game 5, 1975 WS).
The future of Arroyo is murky at best. The 36-year old hurler has been up front and candid about what he will be looking for and what the Reds can afford. In a perfect world, Bronson Arroyo would retire as a Red but baseball economics being what they are, that is highly doubtful.
Bailey is another case. It would be nice for the Reds to lock him up for a few years but the question is if they can afford it. The same with Mat Latos. We will have to wait and see how this plays out.
My luck was this: I attended the Reds game the night before Homer’s jewel. The one that was stormed out or flooded out, whatever you would call it. I watched Arroyo at his crafty best, allowing just two hits in an 8-1 Reds win.
The next night I was in Louisville at the Bats-Indianapolis game. Fans started chanting “Ho-mer Bailey” and my first reaction was, “Damn— Homer threw another no hitter.” I was right. My second reaction was, “Damn—I wish I had been there.”
Now, if the Reds can stay within 2-3 games of first place at the All-Star break and get our bullpen relievers back and sort out the Cueto situation, I’ll be very happy indeed.