For Reds fans searching for a bright spot so far this season it has been like looking for that favorite pen that you swore you put in the drawer in the kitchen next to the silverware and you just cannot find it.
In fact, not only can you not find it, you end up pinching your finger in the drawer when you slam it shut in frustration.
Yes. The beginning of the season has been that tough for Reds fans. Yet, there is a bright spot and that has been Homer Bailey.
Not only has he been a bright spot in his first three starts this season he had a solid ending to 2017 as well.
Bailey in his last nine starts, the first three starts of this season and in his last six starts of the 2017 season, has an era of 3.63. In those 9 games he has thrown 52.1 innings while striking out 36 batters and walking 17.
Have the performances been perfect? No, not even close to perfect, but they have gotten the job done and given the Reds a chance to win which is more than many Cincinnati starters can say.
The strikeouts have not been at as high of a rate as they were in his prime seasons from 2012-2014 when he was at 8 per nine innings, and his walks per nine innings still sit at about 3.5 in these 9 games- which is about one above what Bailey’s average was in his prime.
The velocity is down but the control seems to be there and if Homer Bailey can continue putting together good starts then just maybe the Reds will find a way to get some wins.
Bailey still has not seen the run support necessary for a win this year, as the offense has been painfully quiet, but he has been the best starter on the Reds without a doubt.
More importantly, maybe Bailey can become a mentor to the younger starters and prove to them that it is not always about blowing batters away.
Putting together quality starts has not been a specialty of the Reds in the past few seasons, and this so far is only a very faint light in a very dark tunnel, but it is still a glimmer of hope out of the Reds’ $21 million dollar ace.