Burning Fantasy Baseball Questions: Cincinnati Reds
How safe are the Reds' other rotation members?
It's hard to justify citing Great American Ball Park as a reason to avoid their five-some. The Reds had a 3.51 team ERA there last year, which ranks in the middle of the big-league pack.
Nick's comparison of Johnny Cueto to Matt Cain may have resonated a tad with early mockers. The control-based Cincinnati righty has indeed shown ace-level skills - including a K/9 jump of more than one batter from his modest 2011 showing. He still labors a bit, and his 19 wins inflated his dollar gains, but his honed craft makes him a nice backup if you don't land or avoid targeting a true No. 1.
Mat Latos has even less buildup and stands to offer a more significant come-up. His dominance has dipped in each of the last two seasons, but he significantly improved each piece of his GB/FB ratio. He has the profile to keep high left-on-base percentages, as well, so you can't call the 75.5 percent from last year an utter fluke. With one of the best supporting lineups, he'll sneak below many draft radars with his top-10 starting pitcher potential.
Homer Bailey's schedule was pretty favorable during his late-season run, but here's a prototypical post-hype arm that finally has learned to pitch. He's joining his teammates in learning to adapt to his home park (hello, grounders). His command is worth a staff-capping spot in most leagues, and with the experience he holds heading into his seventh year of MLB action, there's plenty of breakout potential.
Bronson Arroyo's innings-eating, control-fueled, homer-allowing base experienced some positive regression last year, and he should continue to be a useful, in-season mixed rental.
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous publications, and recognized as a finalist in FSWA's awards. The Boston University alum competes in Tout Wars and LABR and has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
During baseball and football season, he's on The Reality Check with Glenn Clark every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore. He hits the airwaves every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. ET on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, where he often crashes other shows, as well.
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