Sunday, July 13, 2003

Reds chatter

July swoon - The Reds were a season-high two games over .500 at 34-32 on June 13. Since, the Reds had gone 7-18 entering Saturday, including a season-breaking eight-game losing streak.

That was the Reds' longest streak since they lost eight in a row last year from June 16-24.

A look at the losing streak:

Pirates 8, Reds 7
Mets 7, Reds 2
Mets 6, Reds 2
Mets 7, Reds 5
Astros 7, Reds 1
Astros 6, Reds 3
Astros 12, Reds 2
Astros 11, Reds 2
Opponents 64, Reds 24

Look familiar?

The dominance of the Astros in the four-game sweep is reminiscent of an earlier series against the Cubs, after the Reds had won the first game.

April 13: Reds 11, Cubs 3
April 14: Cubs 11, Reds 1
April 15: Cubs 10, Reds 4
April 16: Cubs 16, Reds 3

How bad is it?

Before Saturday:

• The Reds had eight losses of nine or more runs. In 2002, they had two total.

• The Reds had 17 losses of five or more runs. In 2002, they had 28 total.

• The Reds had allowed double-digit scoring by their opponent 14 times. In 2002, they allowed double-digit scoring 16 times.

Up in arms

The Reds entered Saturday with a 5.51 team ERA, second-worst in the majors. Last season, the Reds had a 4.40 team ERA at the All-Star break, when they were 46-41.

Also, the Reds are last in the majors in fielding (.975, MLB-high 87 errors) and 26th in hitting (.248).

Remember him?

Gookie Dawkins was once the Reds' shortstop of the future. Now he's the shortstop of Kansas City's future.

The Los Angeles Dodgers, who claimed Dawkins off waivers from the Reds in March, traded him to the Royals this week.

Dawkins hit .165 in 32 games for Triple-A Las Vegas, then .265 with 20 RBI in 35 games after being demoted to Double-A Jacksonville.

The Royals assigned Dawkins to Triple-A Omaha.

By the numbers

15-0: How badly the Astros outscored the Reds in the two first innings of the final two games of their series.
.220: Reds' batting average in their eight-game losing streak.
7.93: Reds' team ERA in their eight-game losing streak.
106: At-bats since Aaron Boone last homered, entering Saturday.

The week ahead

Sunday at Milwaukee, 2:05 p.m.
Monday, OFF
Tuesday, All-Star Game
Wednesday, OFF
Thursday vs. Houston, 7:10 p.m.
Friday vs. Houston, 7:10 p.m.
Saturday vs. Houston, 1:15 p.m.
Sunday vs. Houston, 1:15 p.m.
The skinny: The Reds play 14 of their first 17 games after the break at Great American Ball Park.

MLB Hot Corner

Yankees-Red Sox bad blood: Pedro Martinez plunked Alfonso Soriano and Derek Jeter on the hands; George Steinbrenner cried foul; Martinez responded in kind, even calling the Boss "Georgie Porgie." In an unpredictable world, it's good to see some things stay the same.

Casey Blake, Indians: The career minor-leaguer is hitting everything in sight (.277, 10 HRs). Just ask the Royals, Yankees and Twins (who, coincidentally, let Blake get away and are now struggling).

Wurst is over: The Great Milwaukee Sausage Scandal blossomed into a full-groan pun-nanza. Some examples: "Prosecutors grilled Randall Simon ..."; "Things went from bad to wurst ..."; "Officials have decided to save Simon's bacon." Everyone just kept cranking gags out of the grinder.

Reds 5, Brewers 1
Reds notebook: Four-man rotation ripe for change
Master plan yielding only frustration
Daugherty: Reds product hardly worthy of fan support at this rate
Reds first half rewind
Reds chatter
Reds Q&A
Down on the farm

NL: Bonds' 30th HR ties Foxx record
AL: Halladay makes it lucky 13 vs. Yanks
Ordonez replaces Ramirez as All-Star
MLB power rankings

Sports and reality TV: Behold the promise
This Turkish tradition isn't slip-slidin' away
Tale of the tape: Broadway Joe vs. Joe Millionaire
Page Two power rankings

Truck win could mean sponsorship
Hamilton unable to match son
Dow: Auto racing insider
Hamilton blazes to win in Tropicana
Kenseth quietly cruising toward Cup trophy

Six-time champion Eberle set to defend
Perry surges to lead by 1 stroke at GMO
The Walrus shares lead with Watson, McCullough

Logan begins workouts for Golden State
Veteran players put aside fun to focus on winning
Bird hoping to find Pacers' missing pieces

Thomas playing beyond his years

Armstrong comes up short in Alps

King's bodyguard sues Tyson

Sunday sports on TV, radio

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