It is unclear if there will be a 2020 MLB season. The league has not yet been able to come to an agreement with the players on a plan to start the season, which has been suspended due to COVID-19. If there is no season this year, a lot of players and fans will be disappointed. However, one fan base should be used to the MLB screwing their team over. The Cincinnati Reds have ultimately gotten the short end of the stick from the league multiple times throughout the years.
The Cincinnati Reds had the best record but missed the playoffs in 1981
In 1981, the Cincinnati Reds had the best record in all of baseball. They finished 66-42 behind the stellar play of guys like George Foster, Ken Griffey Sr., Dave Concepcion, and others.
However, despite having the best record in the MLB, the Reds missed the playoffs that season.
The 1981 campaign was a shortened season as it was interrupted by a strike that lasted from June 12 to Aug. 9, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. When the season resumed, though, the owners decided to go with a split-season approach. Sounds weird, right?
Because of this, the Reds did not make the playoffs. The team finished a half-game behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West during the first half of the season, according to the Enquirer. In the second half, the Reds finished one-and-a-half games behind the Houston Astros.
The Dodgers went on to win the World Series.
Can you imagine a team with the best record not making the playoffs in a season today? Twitter would go crazy. That happened, though, and the Reds missed out on a chance to win a World Series.
Pete Rose is banned despite being the hit king
Yes, Cincinnati Reds legend Pete Rose disrespected the game by betting on it. However, why is the he still banned from the league, and why is he not in the Hall of Fame?
In his career, Pete Rose won an NL MVP, a World Series MVP, he won three World Series titles, he was a 17-time All-Star selection, and he racked up 4,256 career hits, the most in MLB history. Despite his accomplishments, though, Rose is still banned from being in the Hall of Fame because he gambled on baseball, which he eventually admitted to, as reported in Sports Illustrated.
Additionally, Houston Astros players recently disrespected the game by cheating during their 2017 World Series-winning season. However, no players were punished for cheating. Which is worse, cheating or gambling?
Now, if the league does not have a season in 2020, the Cincinnati Reds will get screwed over yet again.
The Cincinnati Reds have a chance to be really good in 2020
In years past, Cincinnati Reds fans maybe wouldn’t have cared if there was a baseball season or not. Yes, their fans are passionate and love baseball, but their team has not been good in ages.
Since 1996, the Reds have only been to the playoffs three times. The team has additionally not won a playoff series since 1995.
This year, however, the team has its best roster in years.
Pitching wise, the Reds have one of the best starting rotations in baseball, led by Luis Castillo, Sonny Gray, and Trevor Bauer.
At the plate, the Reds are loaded. The Reds return former NL MVP and six-time All-Star Joey Votto, as well as Eugenio Suarez, who had 49 home runs last season. They also bring back Nick Senzel and Aristides Aquino, who both found success as rookies last year.
However, this offseason, the Reds added Mike Moustakas (a three-time All-Star who hit 35 home runs last year), Shogo Akiyama (a five-time Japanese Pacific League All-Star that has a .301 lifetime batting average, according to WCPO), and Nicholas Castellanos (who had 27 home runs last season and a .289 average).
The Reds also have some nice pieces in their bullpen like Raisel Iglesias, Amir Garrett, and Michael Lorenzen.
With all of that talent, the Reds have a chance to have one of their best seasons in years. If there is no season in 2020, though, this year will just be added to the list of the times the MLB has screwed over the Cincinnati Reds and their fan base.
Stats courtesy of Baseball Reference