The 2005 Reds team was a team of transition. Following the 2004 season, all-time great shortstop Barry Larkin had retired, and Felipe Lopez had moved into the shortstop position. They had replaced most of their starting pitching staff as Jose Acevedo and Cory Lidle had been traded, and Paul Wilson only made nine starts in 2005 due to injury. Ramon Ortiz, Luke Hudson, and Eric Milton joined holdovers Aaron Harang and Brandon Claussen.
The 2004 team had three starting pitchers with ERAs over 5.00, but that didn’t improve in 2006. Three pitchers again had ERAs over 5.00, with two over 6.00, but the Reds relievers and defense held on enough to lower runs allowed by 18. The big difference in 2005 was that their offense improved by 70 runs, or almost one-half run per game. The Reds’ offense featured a set of four slugging outfielders, Ken Griffey, Jr., and youngsters Adam Dunn, Austin Kearns, and Wily Mo Pena. The team also had smooth swinging first baseman Sean Casey at first base and an offensive minded shortstop in Lopez. This team averaged over 5.125 runs per game, allowing almost 5.5 runs per game.
Continue reading Redleg Trade Review: Austin Kearns and Felipe Lopez