2013 Reds / Titanic Struggle Recap

Titanic Struggle Recap: Bronson

Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

FINAL
Cincinnati 4
Atlanta 2

W: B. Arroyo (8-7)
L: K. Medlen (6-9)
S: A. Chapman (21)
BOX SCORE

POSITIVES
–What more can you ask of Bronson Arroyo this season? The old guy delivered another excellent start tonight: 7 innings, allowing one run on three hits.

–Derrick Robinson was 2-4 with two runs scored. Zack Cozart had two hits in four ABs, including a double. Shin-Soo Choo was 2-5 with one run scored. Jay Bruce and Joey Votto each doubled. Todd Frazier tripled. Brandon Phillips drove in two more runs, on a single in the first inning.

–Sam LeCure pitched a perfect eighth inning.

NEGATIVES
–Aroldis Chapman allowed a run on a hit and a walk in the ninth, but he ultimately closed it out for the Reds win.

NOT-SO-RANDOM THOUGHTS
–Ya gotta love Bronson Arroyo.

–Okay, two more games before the All-Star break. It would be really nice to get two wins, eh?

Source: FanGraphs

42 thoughts on “Titanic Struggle Recap: Bronson

  1. Bronson pitched a great game. The Reds played some good defense tonight. Joey picked a couple of throws, Jay Bruce nailed Upton on that throw to second on the blooper along with Cozart and Phillips making their usual games with at least 1 pretty impressive play.

  2. My family reunion had a day at the ballpark tonight and although mostly Reed’s fans got a nice mention on the Braves’ radio broadcast. Some thoughts:

    Reds go and Reds win!!!

    Wow, the traffic in Atlanta is even worse that I thought! It was dreadful getting to the game.

    Turner Field is a nice ballpark and I like the dimensions better than GABP. I also like that everyone attending the game gets a small program. Concession prices were pretty good and in fact better than GABP on some things.

    The site lines at the park aren’t as good as GABP and the park doesn’t seem nearly as intimate.

    Man the chop is annoying! I mean really annoying. It was great the shut them up.

    There were a lot of Reds fans down there. I was impressed.

    Everyone at the park seemed friendly.

  3. First game all year I really haven’t paid much attention to. A good result so I think I’ll try it again tomorrow.

  4. Aroldis gets the third out in the ninth. Devin walks out to the mound with a look on his face that says, “Thank God another one’s over.” Can this team show any excitement or joy for a well-deserved win?

  5. Tough thing is that with the Cards and Pirates on pace for nearly 100 and 98 wins each, the Reds are going to have to play out of their mind and go something close to 46-23 rest of the way to catch up.

    It goes that if either the Cards or Pirates cool off some, it doesn’t have to be quite as drastic as winning 2 out every 3, but it’s not going to be far from it either to win the division.

  6. I know he seems to catch a lot of flack, but I feel Robinson is a big part of this team. Is he an every day guy? Definitely not. But he improves this team in my opinion with the skills he brings. I actually like having him hit second because his speed makes the opponent think a lot every time he comes up. Keeps them off guard.

  7. Watching Bronson when he’s on is so much fun. He bewilders inexperienced hitters, takes advantage of their aggressiveness. (He’s even said it that way.)
    Certain hitters give him problems, and it’s interesting how he handles them.
    Last nite McCann was the hitter he gave special attention.

    In the 5th inning McCann leads off and Bronson obviously pitches around him, walking him on 4 pitches. He doesn’t advance from there. In the 7th inning he decides he doesn’t want to give McCann a free pass. So he challenges him on a fastball on 3-2 and McCann homers for the Braves only run off him.

    My guess: In the 7th he decided that if McCann/Uggla were going to score 2 runs off him, they’re going to have to hit 2 HRs, they weren’t going to get it with a walk and a HR. In the 5th he was thinking about a shutout inning, and opted to walk McCann to get that.

    He’s always thinking situationally. As I said, so much fun to watch and try to think along with him.

    It maybe had something to do with being confident he could handle Uggla early in the game and not as sure late in the game. Or maybe

    Bronson makes non-obvious decisions about how to approach

    • @pinson343: Crap, I posted stuff I thought I’d deleted ! Here it is again without the extraneous stuff:

      Watching Bronson when he’s on is so much fun. He bewilders inexperienced hitters, takes advantage of their aggressiveness. (He’s even said it that way.)
      Certain hitters give him problems, and it’s interesting how he handles them.
      Last nite McCann was the hitter he gave special attention.

      In the 5th inning McCann leads off and Bronson obviously pitches around him, walking him on 4 pitches. He doesn’t advance from there. In the 7th inning he decides he doesn’t want to give McCann a free pass. So he challenges him on a fastball on 3-2 and McCann homers for the Braves only run off him.

      My guess: In the 7th he decided that if McCann/Uggla were going to score 2 runs off him, they’re going to have to hit 2 HRs, they weren’t going to get it with a walk and a HR. In the 5th he was thinking about a shutout inning, and opted to walk McCann to get that.

      He’s always thinking situationally. As I said, so much fun to watch and try to think along with him.

    • @pinson343: I expect that the Reds won’t keep Bronson next year, and I’m sorry at the prospect. Besides being fun to watch, he’s good, and likely will be for a few years to come, even at his age.

      • @greenmtred: I’m not so sure his exit is a foregone conclusion, especially if Cueto’s status is in question. Besides Big Bob absolutely adores the guy.

  8. I really liked the way the Reds played that game. Good offense in the first and, with Bronson leading the way, in control the whole game.

    My only complaint is that with the way they dominated the game, it should not have come down to McCann at the plate as the tying run. A combination of things led to that, including – after the first inning – having at least one runner in scoring position 5 different innings and only scoring 1 run.

    But the only really frustrating thing was how Chapman pitched to Pastornicky, the guy who came in for Upton, with a 3 run lead, two outs and no one on. You can’t walk a guy in that situation ! Even if it were Upton, you have to throw strikes. And Chapman must know that, yet with a 3-1 count he’s still trying to strike the guy out with a 100 mph fastball, instead of just getting the pitch over the plate.

  9. I don’t know why it took so long, but with Chapman pitching, some hitters are taking the approach of keeping the bat on their shoulder until he has 2 strikes. Simmons did that and almost walked. Pastornicky did too and walked.

    On a more positive note, Chapman’s stuff was as good as I’ve seen. His fastball up to 104 mph, and throwing strikes with his slider. He pitched Freeman as tough as possible, but Freeman still managed a bloop single, an amazing AB. How about this sequence:

    1 102 Fastball (Four-seam) Swinging Strike
    2 102 Fastball (Four-seam) Foul Tip
    3 104 Fastball (Four-seam) Ball
    4 103 Fastball (Four-seam) Foul
    5 103 Fastball (Four-seam) Foul
    6 91 Slider In play, single to CF

    • @pinson343: Good observations. With the greater exposure he would have as a starter, it seems likely that hitters would have made adjustments to his weaknesses long ago. Could he deal with it and change his game?

    • @pinson343: Don’t know if you saw it or not but I thought the slider to Freeman while not hung by a long shot was a little too fat. Sort of started a little high; the break was more gradual than sharp; and ended (was hit) about where it probably should have started, i.e still over the plate and in the strike zone. Still quite a piece of hitting by Freeman to to get yo it. Could he really have been sitting on it because he thought he couldn’t catch up to another FB anyway?

  10. In lopsided trades in the Reds favor the Bronson deal has to be at the top. Since coming to the Reds he has done nothing but give 100% and provide strong leadership and been one of the better pitchers in the NL. I will be sad to see him gone after this season.

  11. The Pastoricky walk was on Chapman. Freeman’s battling through a tough at bat and slapping that “off speed” junk was what a good hitter will do. Chapman didn’t appear to lose his cool and he got it done. Sure we left a few too many on base, but the team looked better last night.

    Like Chad said – two more until the much-needed break.

    • @msanmoore: Agreed. Chapman did not lose his cool at all. After the walk to Pastorncky, he pitched extremely well to Freeman and McCann.

      And the Reds did look good overall.

  12. With the entire starting outfield for the Braves out for the rest of the series, the Reds have an excellent chance to take the series.

  13. How on earth did Bronson manage without his personal catcher?!?

    Another myth busted. Consider this a small, but important baby step toward Mez becoming the full time catcher.

    • @Sultan of Swaff: Are you sure that is such a good thing? He isn’t exactly setting the world on fire out there. Hani is just having a down year but I still think he is our best option when he is healthy.

      • @RedTitan19: Hanigan is playing in his age 33 season and has been injured a lot this season. Hanigan is a very good catcher, tough as nails and an asset to the team, but 33 is getting up there for a starting or primary catcher. Nagging injuries are starting to become DL stints for Hanigan. If not Meso , then the Reds need to prepare for some option for passing the torch.

      • @RedTitan19: A down year? Whether it’s injury or not, Hanigan is hitting almost like a pitcher this year. You can’t have a major league regular that slugs .276. You just can’t.

        If he played like any other year, then yes, for this year he’s the best option. But he’s been tailing off hitting wise with age, and Mesoraco needs a chance to prove or disprove himself over the next year or year and a half.

      • @RedTitan19: to my mind Mez needs at least 200 at bats as the regular nearly everyday catcher before we can pass any legitimate judgment. He quite simply hasn’t been given a fair shake yet.

  14. Has anybody else noted that Mike Leake can’t hit anymore? Or rather, that he now seems to hit like a pitcher? Contagion?

    • @greenmtred: It has seemed that way to me too. Maybe he is spending more (all) of his practice and prep (video, scouting reports et al) on pitchng instead of using some of it for hitting. The results of both would seem to bear this out.

    • @greenmtred: It has seemed that way to me too. Maybe he is spending more (all) of his practice and prep (video, scouting reports et al) on pitchng instead of using some of it for hitting. The results of both would seem to bear this out.

      • @OhioJim: Sorry, looks like I double punched. Blame it on this Win8 laptop!

        I was going to add that it is interesting how the Reds our handling their first round sandwich pick, Lorensen, I believe is his name. He apparently was a legit two guy and the Reds promised to develop a plan for him to have a shot a both pitching and being a position player. So the plan was for him to start out this year pitching and take a look at his hitting in the spring (he is a corner OF). They have him at dayton already. My guess mis they hope to ride him long enough, far enough and high enough as a pitcher very fast in hopes he will cool on the hitting part,

    • @greenmtred: Mike has a good swing but a lot of holes and weaknesses as a hitter. Opposing teams have taken his hitting seriously enough to figure out how to get him out.

  15. I think somebody has slipped something into Dusty’s toothpick stash.

    Heisey, LF
    Choo, CF
    Votto, 1B
    Phillips, 2B
    Bruce, RF
    Frazier, 3B
    Cozart, SS
    Miller, C
    Bailey, P

    • @Shchi Cossack: I really think Homer would rather throw to Porky Lopez than have Mesoraco catch him. I’m not saying that’s right, just that if there is any option other than Mesoraco, Dusty will always choose it with Homer on the mound.

      • @Eric the Red: Right, Homer LOVES pitching to Corky, and has said so often. Corky was his catcher at AAA. And Mes can probably use a day off, his back is still bothering him.

  16. The Reds are 8-0 in games Arroyo starts after a Reds loss, and his ERA is 1.57 in those games. I kind of hope they find a way to keep him around next year. You can never have enough pitching.

    • @Eric the Red: I think that is a textbook example of the old school definition of a “stopper”.

      It also fits in with the comment above about Arroyo being a situationally aware pitcher. Over a long season there are turns where maybe you have to reach back and give a little extra or (pardon the thought) maybe almost coast a bit because you are still feeling the wear of the last couple of turns. For the most part Arroyo reads these really well.

    • @Eric the Red: Last year the Reds were tough to sweep (only twice during the regular season, I believe). They had an excellent record when they had to win to avoid a sweep. I don’t have the numbers, but Bronson won more than his share of those games. He’s been a slump stopper.

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