Add it all together and it’s a formula that’s working in Cincinnati. Whether it’s sustainable, well, that’s debatable. Not to mention that the NL Central has been a bit of a mystery in the early going. Are the Cubs really just a .500 team all of a sudden? Are the Brewers likely to hang around all season? Are the Cardinals now poised to run away with everything? The answer to all three questions is, most likely, no. How the Reds fit in to everything as these storylines work themselves out might be a bigger unknown.
For now, though, the Reds and their fans are enjoying this unexpected success after three straight bad seasons.
Yes, baseball history is full of April-May success stories that ultimately produced unhappy or mediocre endings. Whether the story of the 2017 Reds brings a happy ending is a mystery that only gets more compelling with each day, week and month that ticks off the calendar.
Besides, hitters can take advantage of the sacrifice bunt rule.
“The sac bunt is a bogus stat, because guys will try to do it knowing they will not have an 0-for-1 in the box and possibly a 1-for-1 with a hit,” said Kevin Youkilis, famous for his ability to get on base and who had 44 career sacrifice flies of his own, including a league leading 11 in 2006. “I also never understood why a player gets a sacrifice for bunting, but not moving a runner over [by way of a well-placed ground ball]. You are taught to do it all the time. Give yourself up for the team. Why not be rewarded for being selfless?”
Let’s take a look at an extreme and improbable hypothetical situation, but one that is, in Cheap Vikings Jerseys China theory, possible. Say a ballplayer goes 1-for-1 on the season with a solo home run and 501 sacrifice flies. He then bats 1.000/.002/4.000 on the year with 502 RBIs. Despite a “horrible” .002 on-base percentage, this would undoubtedly represent the greatest individual single-season offensive effort in baseball history.