Grading the Week: Here come the Reds

By Dayn Perry | Baseball Writer

Billy Hamilton and the Reds are off and running of late.  (USATSI)
Billy Hamilton and the Reds are off and running of late. (USATSI)

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Another week of the 2013 season is over and done, and now it's time to hand out some grades.

By way of reminder, we pass out just five grades, so, obviously, many teams are going to be left out. Somehow, though, we'll all cope. Also keep in mind that these are grades for the past week and the past week alone -- i.e., things like season-long performance and the road ahead aren't taken into account.

Onward!

TeamGradeAnalysis
A+Seven games against fellow National League powerhouses? No worries for the surging Reds, who began the week by taking three of four from the Cardinals (the lone Cincy loss was a 16-inning affair) and then swept the Dodgers, winning each game by a single run. Speaking of the Dodgers, they entered the series in Cincinnati having gone 26-7 since Aug. 1 and not having been swept in almost three months.
AThe week didn't conclude so swimmingly for the Red Sox, who on Sunday lost to the Yankees on a walk-off wild pitch. Still, they took two of three at home against the Central-leading Tigers (including a 20-4 ritual abuse on Wednesday) and then won three of four in the Bronx. That's a 5-2 mark over a tough stretch of schedule. Oh, and they scored a whopping 54 runs across a four-game span.
B+How do you drop two of three to the Nationals and still wind up with a good grade? You conclude the week by sweeping the Braves, who entered that three-game set in Philly with the best record in all of baseball.
DSure, the Pirates took two of three from the Brewers to start the week, but then they were absolutely throttled by the Cardinals in a huge three-game set in St. Louis, which turned out to be a sweep for the hosts. Over the course of the "Annihilation Under the Arch," the Pirates were out-scored by a margin of 26-10.
D-The Rays not so long ago had a nice grip on the second AL wild-card berth, but that lead is much less substantial after this week's events. First, the Rays split a four-game set with the Angels in Anaheim, and then they dropped two of three in Seattle. So that's seven games against losing teams and a 3-4 record to show for it.
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