MLB Cincinnati Reds 2013 Preview

The Big Red Machine is back and looking like a World Series team. Photo: Aroldis Chapman will remain as closer/AP

LOS ANGELES, March 25, 2013 — The Cincinnati Reds won the National League Central division with a 97-65 record. Their performance in the playoffs, however, was not so good as they exited after the NLDS. 

The Reds shipped Drew Stubbs to Cleveland and received Shin-Soo Choo in return. Joey Votto looks healthy this spring. If he has no injury troubles or lasting effects from last year’s knee injury, he is capable of putting up MVP numbers. If any of the outfielders go down, speedster Billy Hamilton will be waiting in AAA for the call.

SEE RELATED: MLB 2013 Preview: St. Louis Cardinals

The Reds announced that they will no longer be thinking about moving their lights-out closer, Aroldis Chapman, into the starting rotation. He will again be the closer in 2013 and Jonathan Broxton will set up. Mat Latos could be a 20 game winner and make a run at the Cy Young this year. 

The Reds have little competition in the National League Central. A repeat of last year’s record is not only possible but is expected. If they don’t improve on that record and break through the 100 wins level, some may see it as a disappointment.

Joey Votto should be an MVP candidate if healthy/AP Al Behrman

Projected payroll: $98,800,000

Notable Players Out: CF Drew Stubbs, 3B Scott Rolen, C Dioner Navarro

Notable Players In: CF Shin-Soo Choo, LHP Manny Parra

Prospect Watch: OF Billy Hamilton and LHP Tony Cingrani

Highlight Hitter: 1B Joey Votto (ZiPS 2013 Projections: .300/.423/.542 26 HR/80 R/87 RBI/9 SB)

Highlight Pitcher: Mat Latos (ZiPS 2013 Projections: 13-8, 3.47 ERA, 8.48 K/9, 197.3 IP) 

Projected Lineup: C Ryan Hanigan, 1B Joey Votto, 2B Brandon Phillips, 3B Todd Frazier, SS Zack Cozart, LF Ryan Ludwick, CF Shin-Soo Choo, RF Jay Bruce

Projected Rotation: RHP Johnny Cueto, RHP Mat Latos, RHP Bronson Arroyo, RHP Homer Bailey, RHP Mike Leake

Projected Closer: LHP Aroldis Chapman

Manager: Dusty Baker

Projected 2013 Finish in NL Central: 1. Cincinnati Reds  2. St. Louis Cardinals  3. Pittsburgh Pirates  4. Milwaukee Brewers  5. Chicago Cubs 

Kevin J. Wells writes about Major League Baseball and punk rock music.  Follow him on Twitter @WellsOnBaseball

This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

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Kevin J Wells

Kevin J. Wells was born and raised in the Los Angeles area in a town called Montrose.  He currently plays guitar for and is a founding member of the Los Angeles punk rock band Emmer Effer.  He has worked in a number of different career fields including Behavioral Therapy, Commodities, Insurance, and most recently a food cart in Portland, OR. Kevin has been both a sports and entertainment columnist and editor for The Washington Times Communities since January 2013.

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