Reds confident they can contend in NL Central

Reds confident they can contend in NL Central

PITTSBURGH -- Entering Sunday's series finale against the Pirates, the second-place Reds were treading water at 13-13 in the National League Central. Still, a lot of baseball is to be played and hopes remain high.

"I feel good about this team," Reds outfielder Ryan Ludwick said. "Offensively we really haven't got going yet, we've had a couple games where our offense has played well. Obviously the loss of [closer] Ryan Madson early hurt our team, but right now we're playing .500 baseball and we really aren't playing that good of baseball. If we play up to our capability, I think we'll be all right.

"Obviously that team over there in St. Louis is playing really good baseball right now, and they're the team to beat. That's the team that we're trying to knock off the mountain. I think this team and this clubhouse has the ability to do that."

To a man, the Reds feel that they haven't tapped their potential.

"We've been kind of treading water as a team," reliever Logan Ondrusek said. "But we're getting better and better, and people are starting to step up a little more and do the things that they need to do to make everybody successful."

"I think that we're a pretty resilient team," outfielder Jay Bruce said. "We understand how good we are, and when we play well, we can play with anybody and beat anyone."