2013 Reds / Titanic Struggle Recap

Titanic Struggle Recap: This ship may be Leake-ing

Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

FINAL
Cincinnati 4
NY Mets 0

W: M. Leake (4-2)
L: J. Niese (3-5)
BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–Great start by Mike Leake: seven shutout innings, allowing three hits. I’ll take that every time, thank you very much.

–Todd Frazier had two hits, including a double. Looks like Frazier may finally be emerging from his slump.

–Devin Mesoraco homered and walked, and his CatcherERA is fantastic after the shutout.

–Excellent relief work by Sam LeCure and Logan Ondrusek.

NEGATIVES
–None.

NOT-SO-RANDOM THOUGHTS
–That’s nine wins in eleven games for the mighty Redlegs. Even better, after that miserable start in road games, the Reds are now 12-12 away from home.

–Cincinnati has the highest run differential in the major leagues.

–How good has Cincinnati’s rotation been?

Source: FanGraphs

44 thoughts on “Titanic Struggle Recap: This ship may be Leake-ing

    • @preach: That’s for sure. Whenever I’ve heard them talk about top rotations on mlbnetwork, they mention up to 10 rotations (5 in each league), and I never hear the Reds mentioned.

      • @pinson343: I think if the Reds win something other than the “weak” NLC, then the media might start payin…. Oh I can’t even type that was a straight face. (btw – the weak NLC would have both wildcards if the season ended today.)

  1. The Reds have crazy depth at starting pitching when you consider outside the regular five you got Cingrani and two in the pen with Chapman and LeCure who would definitely be in the rotations of many clubs.

    It’s a big change from the days of Elmer Dessens, Jimmy Haynes and hope the rest can get at least five innings.

  2. It’s interesting, I mentioned Lecure would be a good stopper. It’s true that he goes against the closer “book” because he tops out at 91 MPH. But since becoming a reliever, he strikes out more than 1 guy per inning. He is a tiny bit wild for my taste, but not by much.

    It’s just typical that a guy has the K’s, but because he doesn’t throw hard…he’s not seen as ninth inning material.

    • @Hank Aarons Teammate: LeCure reminds me of Stormy Weathers which I say in a positive way. Some nights, on some “guns”, I see him hitting 93 or so in situations where he knows he is only pitching in one inning.

      I think his key to success is that he attacks instead of nibbling around. Also he appears to stick to his plan even if he doesn’t get a close call or can’t get a batter to chase on the first try.

      • @OhioJim: LeCure has better stuff than Weathers, better breaking pitches and a more live fast ball (more movement). They do have the same bulldog mentality. LeCure could definitely close if needed.

  3. Just a thought, maybe this has been mentioned, I wonder what Chris Denorfia would cost as a stopgap platoon guy. He’s not young, so he might not cost anything major, and his career OPS vs lefties is .841, and better this year. I really like the idea of him platooning with Paul.

  4. During the beat reporter sound byte on the radio broadcast tonight Fay was talking about the LF situation. There was a lot going on around me but if I followed him correctly he said he had talked to Jocketty in the last couple of days and WJ said they had looked around and didn’t see anybody they liked at a price they liked who was available right now.

    Fay said his sense was that they were satisfied with the trio of Paul, Lutz, and Robinson except that perhaps they would like have to a RH bat with some pop to bring off the bench in PH situations until Heisey was back. I didn’t hear anything specific about when Heisey might be back but I presume later rather than sooner given this talk.

    • @OhioJim: Of course by now maybe we should have come to suspect that when WJ says nothing is cooking is often when he is on the verge of pulling something significant out of the oven.

    • @OhioJim: I didn’t listen to the whole game, so maybe the same conversation was had with multiple people, but I believe that discussion was between Marty and “My friend and yours” Mark Sheldon.

      And I totally agree with your assessment of what Jocketty has up his sleve.

        • @pinson343:

          I mentioned a couple of days ago that the Reds had inquired about Tampa’s Ben Zobrist. I think there is some validity to it. Zobrist is a name that has never been brought up. A WJ trait of keeping talks quiet. Character-wise Zobrist is top shelf. The more I look into this guy the more impressed I am with him. His versatility also would allow the Reds to fortify their bench a little more. He can play all INF and OF positions. He was a SS in college so it would also be possible for him to be the backup SS, demote Izturis and carry another OF on the 25 man roster. He is a perfect #2 hole hitter and is a switch hitter that hits well from both sides of the plate.
          If the Reds cannot pry Stanton away from the Marlins, then Zobrist is the guy they should be pursuing very hotly.

  5. Ron Darling was none too happy with Robinson’s bunt attempt late in the game with the Reds up 4-0. Wha??? Speed is Robinson’s only tool! It’s not like the game was a blowout. I’ll never understand why the team leading the game owes it to the other team to stop competing……even though the losing team doesn’t have to make any such agreement.

    Trade. Ondrusek. NOW. His value will never be higher. Seriously, what was that?!? Fastballs at 96, changeup at 82. Man, for all the grief he takes around here, he sure looked good tonight.

    • @Sultan of Swaff: Well, 4-0 IS a blowout.

      I would trade Ondrusek. As an aside, if he keeps pitching like this with newfound strikeouts, he’ll move up to second worst pitcher in the pen, demoting Broxton.

    • @Sultan of Swaff: Darling was full of it. For one thing, an IF hit is how Robinson gets a hit. If the Mets tie it up at 4-4, then does Darling retroactively say the bunt attempt was OK after all.

    • @Sultan of Swaff: The old unwritten rule is that stuff like that shouldn’t be done if the game is within a grand-slam of being tied. In the case of Robinson’s bunt last night, that game was 1-run away from being a “save situation”. I thought saves were important :o so I’d still call it a close game. Not sure why Darling had a problem with the play.

  6. The greatest player in the history of the world (Bryce Harper) just butchered a play that would have ended the game vs SF. Reminded me a little of the Freese ball that Cruz should have caught in game 6.

    I actually think Harper is a great player, but still overrated. It is possible to be both.

  7. Speaking of the media, as Preach was above, I’m at a hotel tonite and stuck with watching espn for baseball hilites. They have a segment on how the Cardinals are doing great with 3 injured starting pitchers that they were counting on – Westbrook, Carpenter, and now Garcia. The Cardinals were counting on Carpenter this year ? News to me. The healthy Cardinals would have a 6 man rotation – also news to me.

    The Reds shutout behind Leake, et al. was not mentioned when the Reds game was covered. I guess it was enough to deduce it from the score.

    They were having a top web gem vote between BP’s catch on Monday nite vs. a Texas DP on Tuesay. The Texas DP was made because the batter jogged to first most of the way.
    So Mark Mulder says that BP’s play was not special at all, the only difficult thing was staying out of Choo’s way. Aaron Boone just sits there. Grrr. Nothing like rigging the vote.

    • @pinson343: Carpenter was considered healthy until just before spring training started, when the Cardinals announced at the last minute that he wasn’t likely to pitch this season. Shelby Miller was expected to start the season in the bullpen, but then auditioned for the rotation when Carpenter was hurt. So I’m pretty sure they were expecting Carpenter to be healthy, and that is a pretty sizable loss from the rotation even if he is 38.

      Just like last year (and to some extent the year before), the Cardinals’ rotation has been hit hard with injuries, but they can draw on the deep farm system they’ve developed over the last 6 years (i.e., since Jocketty left).

  8. Mets are bad. Real bad. We should beat them. Nice outing by Leake who justifies his starting nod over the recently sent down Cingrani. Let’s get the sweep today. Looking forward to seeing this Mets phenom pitcher. Nice match-up.

    One negative from yesterday: Robinson 0 for 5. It’s amazing what a difference Choo has made compared to the previous five or six years. Cozart still struggles but that won’t change until Ludwick returns. SS always bats 2nd. Abner Doubleday said so.

  9. If Darling is upset that Robinson bunted, shouldn’t he be upset that Mes was swinging for the fences in the 9th?

  10. I just read that Xavier Paul has an OBP of .389 since joining the Reds last summer. It really is too bad that Abner Doubleday wrote that rule that lefthanders can only bat in odd spots in the order, because he would look nice hitting second.

  11. You know, I was going to post the starters ERAs before I even got to the site. I just happened to be looking at the statistics.

    It is pretty mind-blowing. I’ve never seen a staff with 6 starters with ERAs under 3.30.

  12. The Cardinals (+57) have a higher run differential than the Reds (+54)–they got quite a boost last night.

  13. I can’t help but think the elephant in the room is Cozart. We’re really stuck on this one. You can’t send him down (Negron? no thanks), you can’t play Izturis every day (cuz he’s worse), and his trade value is cratering.

    I suppose batting him 8th would give breathing room to regroup, but like Steve M. said, it’s as if Dusty is doing everything in his power to make a bad situation worse.

  14. Looking forward to today’s game: Latos vs. Harvey and some afternoon ball. Sounds like some fun to me.

  15. “Great start by Mike Leake: seven shutout innings, allowing three hits. I’ll take that every time, thank you very much.”

    I might be reading too much into this (I’m sure I am), but I don’t think you gave Leake is due here. “I’ll take that every time” is usually reserved for a 7IP, 6H, 1 or 2R performance. Seven innings of 3 hit shutout pitching should get an “excellent” or “dominant”. I’d settle for “tremendous”.

  16. All of the great pitching numbers make me mention the great defense the Reds typically play, too. A lot of pitchers around the league would have lesser ERAs if they had the Reds’ defense behind them night in and night out.

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