The trade deadline has come and gone without the Cincinnati Reds making a significant move. That is what Reds General Manager Walt Jocketty expected.  “I don’t expect anything to happen, not with us,” he said a few days prior to the deadline.

Jocketty and the Reds see no glaring weaknesses and are comfortable with the team. They are leading the National League in hitting and their 3.15 ERA since June 17 is the second-best in Major League Baseball.

While it is true that the Reds have no glaring weaknesses, their depth is out of balance. The outfield and rotation are overloaded, while the pen and infield are somewhat short.

The outfield is blessed with six players who appear capable of playing everyday. One of the six, Chris Dickerson, a 2009 Reds everyday outfielder before injuring his ankle, finds himself stuck at Triple-A. As a matter of fact, the outfield is so deep, that despite 11 years of MLB service and a .317 average with Triple-A Louisville, Gary Matthews, Jr. was not called up and opted out of his Triple-A contract.

The rotation has seen nine different starters, five who have a 4.01 ERA or higher. Four of the nine are rookies and are a combined 9-9 with a 3.62 ERA and 1.35 WHIP. Edinson Volquez, Aaron Harang and Homer Bailey are currently in different stages of working their way back from injury and are a combined 9-10 with a 5.30 ERA and 1.51 WHIP. 

Catching is decent with Ramon Hernandez and Ryan Hanigan.

The infield backups consist of Miguel Cairo and Paul Janish. Janish is an adequate middle infielder but Cairo is an inadequate corner infield replacement.

The bullpen has improved and the addition of Russ Springer and possibly Jason Isringhausen will help. However, they still only have two lefties, Arthur Rhodes and Bill Bray. Rhodes has been lights out, but Bray is scary. Look for Aroldis Chapman to get a call up soon.

If this club is going to be a real contender, four key players must stay healthy: first baseman Joey Votto, second baseman Brandon Phillips, third baseman Scott Rolen and the best arm in the bullpen, Arthur Rhodes.

Go Reds!

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