2013 Reds / Titanic Struggle Recap

Titanic Struggle…ummm….Recap?

Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

NOT FINAL – SUSPENDED
Philadelphia 0
Cincinnati 0

BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–Homer Bailey was outstanding: eight shutout innings, two hits, ten strikeouts, no walks. Simply dominant.

–Aroldis Chapman is good.

NEGATIVES
–Meanwhile, the Reds’ offense only had two hits.

NOT-SO-RANDOM THOUGHTS
–The game was suspended because of rain just as the Reds were preparing to hit in the bottom of the ninth. The game will resume at 5:30 pm Wednesday, just before the regularly scheduled game.

–Homer was cruising along, had only thrown 88 pitches, and Dusty Baker pulled him for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the eighth. If I were managing, I’d have left him in the game, methinks, but Dusty’s decision there was defensible. No complaints.

–When the game resumes, the Reds will have a chance to win it. If they don’t, and it goes to extra innings, I’d LOVE to see Aroldis Chapman remain on the mound for a second inning of work. It’d almost be like he started the game!

57 thoughts on “Titanic Struggle…ummm….Recap?

  1. Reminder: Tomorrow nights scheduled game will be broadcast on ESPN. Will tomorrow be Mike Leake’s last start as a Redleg? Tune in tomorrow for the next exciting episode of “All My Reds”

    • Bailey certainly stepped up tonight. Should we presume that he replaces Cueto on Hanigan’s dance card; and, Meso gets Cingrani (or would it be Cingrani gets Meso)? Unfortunately Homer also replaced Cueto in getting no offensive support behind his great effort.

      Armando Galarraga was pulled from the Louisville game Monday after 3.2 innings. He had allowed 1 run (earned) on 53 pitches (2 hits; 2 walks; 4K’s). Overall in 3 starts over 14+ innings his WHiP is right at 1.5 and his ERA 2.41. Could it possible if Lecure goes DL that Galarraga would be the call up to be long man and Simon would drop into the middle relief role?

      • @OhioJim: Galarraga left early with an injury, not because he was being prepped for a call-up. He’s on the DL, the only reason he’d come to Cincinnati is to see a doctor.

        • @pinson343: Yeah, if anything, I’d think that Cueto’s injury gives Leake breathing room to stay in the rotation. … Cingrani gets Cueto’s spot, and Galarraga is hurt, so who would replace Leake? …..

        • @Brian Van Hook: Cueto’s injury actually puts Leake on the hot seat. Sure, he’s safe for 2 weeks, but if Cingrani throws together a couple of starts befitting of a major league 5th starter, then when (if?) Cueto comes back in 2 weeks, Leake may find himself in horse country.

      • @OhioJim: People here are hung up on Chapman becoming a starter or any other plan that would eliminate Mike Leake. In reality Mike Leake’s job is safe as long as Johnny Cueto is out – when Cueto returns the Reds have to choose between keeping Leake or Cingrani and demoting the other to AAA.

    • Reminder: Tomorrow nights scheduled game will be broadcast on ESPN. Will tomorrow be Mike Leake’s last start as a Redleg? Tune in tomorrow for the next exciting episode of “All My Reds”

      No, regardless of performance, it’s not Leake’s last start, IMO.

  2. I hoped play would resume, felt the Reds would score in the 9th off Aumont. Now we don’t know who the Phils will pitch in the 9th.

    If it goes to the 10th, I’m not confident. The Phils have Rollins, Utley, and Howard coming up, calling for a lefty. That would indicate going with Chapman, but it would be his 4th day in a row. Then again, he only threw a few low-pressure pitches on Sunday. Maybe Dusty/Price will go with how he feels.

    Ordinarily I’d be comfortable with LeCure, and my understanding is that he’s ready to go, but he hasn’t pitched for a while. Broxton’s terrible outing on Sunday doesn’t affect my thinking too much, the rust is presumably off. But Broxton is not as effective against lefties as righties. Marshall sure is missed.

    • @pinson343: Apparently Aumont was announced, so either they’ve burned him for nothing or he’ll have to pitch.

      But not for long, after Cozart HBP, Dusty has Votto bunt him over, Philips IBB, runners advance advances on a WP to Bruce, then on an 0-2 count Bruce swings and misses at a ball in the dirt which gets past Kratz. Cozart scores from third, everyone says what a genius Dusty is for having Votto bunt, and we move on to the nightcap :-)

      Go Reds!

  3. How are we supposed to sleep knowing that the outcome of tonight’s Reds game is yet to be decided? All it takes is one swing of the bat tomorrow afternoon.

    I was fine with Homer Bailey being pinch hit for, but I was hoping to see Derrick Robinson. Not Chris Heisey. I don’t care if Robinson is better as a lefthanded hitter, just try to run out a bunt single.

    I doubt we’ll see Chapman pitch a 4th day in a row. Three days in a row was already a bunch for the Reds. Hopefully the Reds won’t even need a pitcher, surely Votto or Phillips can take care of that. Unfortunately whoever gets used probably won’t be available for the night game…. and they’ll want to keep Broxton available for a close on Wednesday night.

  4. Did some research. If it goes to the 10th inning tomorrow, and Chapman is not used, then I’d go with LeCure. Basically, I think he’s a better pitcher than Broxton right now. In 2012 and 2013, LeCure was slightly more effective against lefties than righties.

    I didn’t bother with Broxton’s 2013 numbers, skewed as they are right now with Sunday’s outing. In 2012 lefties had more trouble hitting him than righties, but he walks lefties a lot more (13 in 27 innings worth).

    • @pinson343: Just remember, after finishing Tuesday’s game they still have to play Wednesday night’s game and Dusty/Price won’t want the same guy to pitch twice in the same day. I think you can be sure that Broxton will be reserved for the night game as the acting closer, and Chapman will be deemed unavailable for pitching so many consecutive days.

      I think we’ll see LeCure in the earlier game and Hoover (after three relaxing days off) used as a setupman, if necessary, in the night game.

  5. Usally I find Dusty’s bullpen moves fairly predictable, but have no idea in this case. He would not ordinarily use Chapman 4 days in a row, but Aroldis was strong tonite and those are a bunch of lefties coming up. Also Sunday was more like a half day.

    He likes LeCure in extra innings but Sam hasn’t pitched for a while.

    He likes to get a pitcher who has a bad outing back out there soon, that would be Broxton.

  6. I would guess if Dusty stuck with Chapman in the the make up that would make him unavailable for Wednesday’s game. That may be too much of a risk for Dusty.

  7. Homer was cruising along, had only thrown 88 pitches, and Dusty Baker pulled him for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the eighth.

    I’m very critical of Dusty but not here. This was the right call. It’s APRIL!

  8. This is why I didn’t want Mes to catch Homer until he had a bad outing with Hanigan behind the plate. He’d been on such a great roll, that when the inevitable bad game came along if Mes was behind the plate he’d get blamed.

    Considering Homer’s always had trouble in St. Louis and the Cards have a strong offense, Dusty’s wildly uncharacteristic use of Mes for that start almost looks calculated to produce this very result….

    By the way, I think it’s kind of odd that everyone assumes/wants to Mes to catch Cingrani. I think the handling of Mes has been horrible, but Hanigan is unquestionably better defensively and more experienced, so wouldn’t you rather have him catch the kid making his first big league start?

    • @Eric the Red:
      As much as I would like to see Mes get more playing time, I have to agree it makes more sense to let Cingrani pitch to the more experienced catcher.

    • @TC: That movie was on tv last night… I was watching it while following along to the Reds online, and then switched full attention to the Reds by the time it hit the 6th and just had the movie on quietly.

  9. Dusty should squeeze every last drop out of Chapman in the first game. Lord knows he won’t have a chance to use him in the second one with Leake pitching….

    • @walshjp: With Leake pitching he doesn’t need to throw a shutout to keep them in the game, he just needs to match John Lannan. That isn’t much to ask from Leake, who’s kept them in both of his previous two starts. Leake’s first two starts were both losses by JJ Hoover rather than blowouts caused by Leake.

      • @RFM: Leake has had 6 IP, 4 ER, and 6 IP, 5 ER in his first two starts this year. If that’s “keeping the team in the game” and something be proud of, then every single starting pitcher in baseball should be proud. That’s because he has a 6.75 ERA, and at the end of the season, all starters will have a better ERA than that.

        • @Hank Aarons Teammate: I would agree, but we are talking about the #5 man in the rotation. A Quality Start would be a 4.5 ERA. Leake still may be a bit on the high side but not by much. Also, we are only talking about 2 starts.

          I don’t doubt we won’t see Cingrani in the rotation this season. But, after 2 starts? I wouldn’t think so. And, I don’t see Chapman coming to the rotation at all.

    • @bigredone: Probably Freeman, the reliever that they brought up when Cueto went on the DL. My understanding is that he was a temporary callup for bullpen depth until they needed a starter/Cingrani on Thursday.

  10. I hope there is no need to figure out who might pitch. Zach, Votto, and MV(B)P… it’s just a little batting practice before the real game. Swing for the fences and end it quickly.

  11. And, I’m glad the Phillies can’t bring Bastardo back into the game. And, it’s fun to type Bastardo. Take that filters!

  12. Ah, the Old Cossack hates night game rain delays. He can never remain vertical for the end of the game.

    Most everyone seems OK with the decision to remove Bailey for a PH with 1 out and no one on base in the bottom of the 8th inning. In trying to piece together the 7th & 8th innings from the game reports (since I didn’t actually see the 7th & 8th innings, argh!), I find the decision interesting considering the circumstances. Bailey had only thrown 88 pitches through 8 innings and was just drilling the strike zone with no loss of velocity. In both the 7th & 8th innings, he faced a total of 6 batters with 3 SO and 3 fly balls to the OF and that was through the very heart of the Phanatic’s lineup. There were no HR threats in the #8, #9 & #1 lineup slots due up in the 9th inning and the only PH available with power was RH (Mayberry). The Reds bullpen has been shredded by injury and mismanagement, so preserving the bullpen would seem to be a priority if possible. Since the only hitter due up for Cincinnati that Manuel feared in the 8th inning was Choo, he brought in a LHP for the bottom of the 8th inning, knowing Choo struggles against LHP. The decision to PH Heisey and remove Bailey with 1 out and nobody on base seemed like an extreme long-shot. For such an action to produce a run would require Heisey to get on base (.184 OBP) and Choo to drive hime in or extend the inning against the LHP then Cozart to drive him in (.176 BA). That’s not a bet I would double down on, and from the flow of the game and Bailey’s recent innings, every indication points to Bailey ripping through the #8, #9 & #1 hitters in the top of the 9th inning without pause.

    The better chance to win the game was in the bottom of the 9th with the Reds sending the heart of their lineup to the plate and if Bailey pitches the top of the 9th, the Reds bullpen is completely preserved or is not tapped until the 10th inning.

    Just some perspective from the Old Cossack who can’t stay vertical for the end of night games delayed by rain…

    • @Shchi Cossack:

      My thought last night was to pinch hit for Hanigan in the bottom of the 8th inning and if that PH got on then let Bailey bat and sacrifice the runner over. Bailey was in the on-deck circle and Baker probably would have done just that if Hanigan had reached. However, Hanigan makes an out, Heisey PH for Bailey and its another 1-2-3 inning.

    • @Shchi Cossack: It was a good call to pinch hit for Homer. Maybe not bringing in Heisey, but a good call. I believe if Hanigan got on, Baker may have had Homer try to bunt him over, thus keeping Homer in the game. But, once Hanigan got out, the pinch hitter was the call.

  13. Homer was flat out dealing last night. Got a bit lucky on the fly balls that had a chance to leave the yard late, but a truly efficient performance.

    Bottom line, we need to keep one or both of Bailey and Latos. Latos gives off the vibe that he’s gonna test the free agent waters, so Homer might be the guy we have to re-sign. With Arroyo likely gone, Leake iffy, and Chapman never to start, this pitching surplus could quickly turn into a deficit.

      • @CP: Actually I thought Latos is only under team control until 2015. He signed a 2-year deal to avoid arbitration covering this year and next year. What I failed to consider is that only his first two years of arbitration were bought out. So yes, he’d be arbitration eligible and thus under team control in 2015 making his first free-agent year 2016. Good call and I’m glad you posted this, as it made me look.

  14. Hopefully the Reds get it done in the 9th. In 18 career innings, Aumont has only allowed 12 hits but has walked 14. Cozart should not go up there hacking at everything.

  15. totally agree Cossack, there is no way that Homer should have been taken out of that game last night. You are in a 0-0 tie, your offense is not getting it done (tip your cap to the other pitcher) and you are going to start burning your bullpen just because Chapman has to pitch the 9th inning.

    I thought Dusty was a players manager? He has a guy throwing a 2 hitter, and he needs to save his pen, so what does he do? Go to the only guy who can pitch the 9th inning because that is how he plays it. He should have brought Chapman in with 2 outs to face Utley, and not pitched him at all last night.

    Now he is not available for 2 games today. unbelieveable.

    Oh and “People here are hung up on Chapman becoming a starter” would be me. I just think that a pitcher with a 0.0 ERA who can throw 100 miles per with has become a very good slider should pitch more than 1/3 of an inning in 8 games.

    He could have done something about a 5 game losing streak

    • @reaganspad: Yeah, the Homer move was iffy (especially considering how long Dusty like to leave Bronson in a game running on fumes) but hindsight made it bad since his appearance had no discernible impact on the game except get all the ticket holders pizza and ice cream.

      Watching Leake plod through this season still leaves me bitter after each outing. I will never understand the decision or the manner in which it was made.

  16. Gotta love National League baseball! I completely agree with Dusty on this one, and would have put Heisey up as a PH there seven days a week and twice on Sunday. But with the abomination known as the DH, the issue wouldn’t even come up. I pray that the DH never comes to the NL.

  17. I would have pinch hit for Homer in the 8th as well in that situation. I would have let him bunt had Hanigan reached. Outs are at a premium late in the game like that and Heisey has a history of getting some big pinch-hits including smacking a few over the wall.

  18. “Homer was cruising along, had only thrown 88 pitches, and Dusty Baker pulled him for a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the eighth. If I were managing, I’d have left him in the game, …”

    Defensible? It couldn’t have worked out better. With the rain it was important to make every at bat count. If a run had scored in the 8th they wouldn’t be playing today.

  19. I respect everyone and their opinions on this site but please just stop, we’re making a mountain out of a mole hill. I understand the frustrations with Dusty Baker but his decision last night, if looked at with a critique of mutual exclusivity, is correct.

    Two points here. Bailey had thrown 89% of the game at that point, we can’t expect the 9th to always be a surefire repeat of the other 8. Also, more importantly, we can’t throw away an out by leaving Bailey in there to hit, especially when there’s been 4 hits combined by both teams.

    We needed as many swinging bats as possible and that means a PH in the bottom of the 8th. Especially with Chapman in the 9th should we have gotten that hit from Heisey. C’mon, Choo was up right after him, that’s the right move.

    Last night’s move was more than just “defensible”, it was right, in my opinion. We have to be able to critique individual moves without bias.

  20. What is the TV status for the resumed game? Will it be on MLB.TV, or blacked out thereon? Are the beer vendors still shut down because it’s past the 8th inning?

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