Welcome to the Hitter Power Rankings, a new feature in which a panel of MLB.com voters will periodically cast their ballots for the best bats of the moment. Track record and talent certainly count here, but to be clear, this exercise is more about what's happening right now than simply listing MLB's most dangerous sluggers. Who's hot? Who's driving the conversation? And don't forget the fun factor. Early in the season, those criteria can yield some surprises that nobody would have expected to see here even two weeks ago along with plenty of more obvious names.
The Rise and Fall of Aristides Aquino
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto apparently can still throw it down at age 38. Votto posted video Sunday on his Instagram account dunking a basketball, along with the caption, "If I don’t get hits today I’m retiring and walking on at the University of Toronto intramural program. I set great picks.
On a cool Southern California evening, Cincinnati Reds rookie Hunter Greene brought some record-setting heat. After five overpowering innings, the Los Angeles Dodgers finally caught up. Trea Turner launched a two-run homer to snap a scoreless tie in the sixth and the Dodgers beat the skidding Reds 5-2 on Saturday night for their fifth consecutive victory.
We knew over the weekend that outfielder Shogo Akiyama wasn't going to the make the Cincinnati Reds Opening Day roster. The only question remaining was whether or not he'd accept being optioned to the minors, something he did not have to do given the legalese in his contract. He has apparently refused said assignment, prompting the Reds to release him outright today. They'll be on the hook for his $8 million salary this year, and it remains to be seen whether or not he gets picked up by another MLB club on the eve of his 34th birthday. Happy trails, Shogo.
Interesting article about "Cobra" Dave Parker’s four years with the Reds
Not much to get excited about Cincinnati Red-player wise for the Hall of Fame ballot this year. Scott Rolen is the closest we have. I didn’t like Rolen when he was with Philly and really didn’t like him when he was with St. Louis but grew to respect & like him when he came to Cincy. I hope Rolen gets in, if not this year then maybe a year or two down the road
Really neat read about mid-80s Reds Reliever, Rob Murphy.
God, give me strengthMe, you idiots
AP reporter Joe Reedy has relayed that Fox Sports, who broadcasts multiple NFL games weekly during the season, has "pulled" Thom Brennaman from their upcoming fall schedule. No word yet on how long that will be, or whether it's suspension or termination.