I heard Colin Cowherd take shots at the "fraudulent" Reds on the local sports talk station here in Cincy again today... Now while I am, and always will be a Pirates fan, I also follow/like the Reds. I guess they have grown on me since I moved to Cincy 13 years ago, especially since I get to see them almost every day on tv over here.

I like Colin Cowherd more than most people do... I listen to him each day... What I've always appreciated is how prepared he usually is and how he can make me think about a topic...whether I agree or disagree with the drivel he spews.

What's disappointing in this instance is his apparent lack of research on this matter. His argument includes: They can't beat good teams. They play in a sandbox. They are not equipped to win in the postseason. They don't have postseason experience.

This is sadly another case of Cincinnati and smaller markets not fitting the template of ESPN. If you aren't New York, Boston, Philly or LA....you don't matter....unless you can be used as fodder. Here is what I don't get...

Yes, the Reds are 12-22 vs NL 1st/2nd place teams...Yet the Cards are 15-16 vs Cubs, Brewers and Astros....and 1-2 vs Giants, 1-2 vs Padres, 0-3 vs Rockies and 3-3 vs Mets...

And check these records for "playoff" teams:
Phillies: 2-4 vs Cubs, 2-4 vs Pirates, 5-7 vs Braves, 6-6 vs Mets
Braves: 4-5 vs Nationals, 0-4 vs Cards, 5-6 vs Mets
Padres: 3-3 vs Nationals, 4-8 vs Rockies, 2-4 vs Atlanta, 5-7 vs LA
White Sox: 4-8 vs Cleveland, 1-3 vs Baltimore
Rays: 2-2 vs Royals, 6-6 vs Jays

SOS:
The Reds strength of schedule may be 29th...but what about others?: St Louis 27th, White Sox 26th, Rangers 25th, Padres 23rd, and Giants 22nd.

GABP factor:
It's not like the Reds are only cleaning up at GABP. They are 31-25 on the road. Only the Padres (34) have more road wins in the NL. Runs per game: At GABP, 5.04, on the road 4.70.

Road woes? How about these road batting averages for the Reds?:
Votto .338, Janish .321, Nix .312, Rolen .296, Cairo .289, Phillips .279. They are 3rd in MLB in road batting average, 5th in road slugging and 4th in road OPS.

Postseason experience:
Sure, the Reds haven't been in the playoffs since 1995. But Rolen, Cabrera, Edmonds, Arroyo, Cairo, Rhodes and Baker have.

Summary:
The Reds are not perfect...far from it. They don't have a "hammer" to throw in Game 1 of the playoffs, and they have struggled vs the best teams... But if you are hitting, pitching and fielding like the Reds are...and you are 118 games into the season, that doesn't make the Reds a fraud... That makes Cowherd an unprepared blowhard dip****.