2022 Cincinnati Reds
Managed by David Bell
History, Comments, Contributions
In a very rare occurence, the 2022 Cincinnati Reds started their season on the road, a result of Opening Day being pushed back by a week by the 2021-2022 lockout, and MLB picking up the schedule where it stood starting on April 7th, with the missed games being tacked on at the end of the season or as part of doubleheaders. The Reds traditionally start every season at home, in commemoration of the Cincinnati Red Stockings having been the first-ever professional baseball team; the few instances when this tradition was broken, most notably in 1990 when they went on to secure their most recent World Series win, was due to inclement weather. They got off on the right foot, defeating the defending World Series champions, the Atlanta Braves, 6-3.
It had been a difficult off-season for the Reds, after their late-season struggles in 2021 had cost them a postseason slot that seemed ripe for the taking for most of the year. After the lockout was settled, management decided that it was time to re-tool, and in addition to losing OF Nick Castellanos to free agency, they traded three key veterans in return for prospects: OF Jesse Winker and 3B Eugenio Suarez were both sent to the Seattle Mariners on March 14th, netting four youngsters led by OF Jake Fraley and P Justin Dunn, one day after P Sonny Gray had been traded to the Minnesota Twins for two prospects. The line-up on Opening Day still featured some familiar faces in 1B Joey Votto; 2B Jonathan India, the Rookie of the Year the previous season; SS Kyle Farmer; C Tyler Stephenson; CF Nick Senzel; and DH Mike Moustakas, in addition to P Tyler Mahle. Rounding out the team were RF Aristides Aquino, attempting a comeback after batting below the Mendoza Line for the previous two seasons, and LF Tommy Pham and 3B Brandon Drury, both recent pick-ups. Most observers thought the Reds would sink back in the standings as a result of the moves.
In spite of their win on Opening day, the Reds had a dreadful first month, as they were 3-19 on May 1st. this was tied for the second worst record after 22 games since 1900, trailing only the 1988 Baltimore Orioles, who famously lost their first 21 games that season before recording a win. One of the prime culprits was 1B Votto, who was off to an awful start, batting .129 and slugging (?) .143 in April. They fell 4-23, threatening all sorts of futility records, before suddenly turning things around, winning 5 of their next six games. That gave them a 9-25 record which was still the worst in the majors and quite embarrassing, but at least they were back within shouting distance of five other teams who had also already lost 20 games with 13 or fewer wins.
Awards and Honors
- All-Star: Luis Castillo
- Dave Clark: "Cincinnati Reds' 3-22 start among worst in MLB history", USA Today, May 4, 2022. 
- Mitch Stacy (Associated Press): "Cost-cutting takes a bite out of offense for Cincinnati Reds", Yahoo! News, March 29, 2022.