Titanic Struggle Recap

Milton doesn’t like it when the Reds drop below .500

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (60-61) 3 6 1
Colorado Rockies (47-74) 7 10 0
W: De La Rosa (12-8) L: Simon (12-8)
Box Score | Play-by-Play | Game Thread | Depth Chart | Win Probability

Positives

–None.

Negatives

–Coming into tonight’s game, the Rockies had the worst record in baseball. They beat the Redlegs. Ugh.

–Alfredo Simon continued his slow decline back to mediocrity by allowing seven runs (five earned) on ten hits and a walk in five innings. Those unearned runs were his fault, however, as Simon made a little league-esque throw in trying to record an out at second base.

Not so random thoughts….

–Just when they started teasing us again, the Reds have lost three in a row, and five of their last six — all against teams with losing records. Ugh.

–I lied. There were a couple of positives. Ryan Ludwick singled, doubled, and homered (half of Cincinnati’s hits), and drove in a couple of runs. Zack Cozart went 2-3 with an RBI. JJ Hoover and Carlos Contreras pitched well in relief.

–Our old friend Drew Stubbs had a couple of hits for the Rockies.

–Johnny Cueto pitches tomorrow, so that seems like a good thing.

–The Redlegs dropped back below .500 after an uninspiring performance against the worst team in the league. Seems like an appropriate moment for the reappearance of Milton.

Despite the smile, Milton was unhappy with Cincinnati's performance tonight.

Milton was unhappy with Cincinnati’s performance tonight.

60 thoughts on “Milton doesn’t like it when the Reds drop below .500

  1. Yeh that was a Milton game. Simon’s throw was worse than a little league throw. In little league they teach you in that situation to just throw it to 2nd base. Instead he tried to throw it to Cozart, who was on the run, while Schumaker was already standing on the base. A 2 run error. A careless play, loss of focus, whatever you want to call it.

    • we have one of the best starting pitching staffs in baseball and we have the best closer in baseball and we are in fourth place lets see g.m. we need hitters how long is it going to take you to figure this out

  2. Contreras pitched great after getting the rust off. The Reds need 2 new starters, give him a chance as one of them.

      • 8 starts in AA last year 3-2 2.76 ERA. Less hits than IPs and only 2 HRs allowed in 42.1 Innings. Walked a lot (21) but I wouldn’t say those numbers weren’t good. He’s already on the team and rarely used out of the pen; why not give him a shot in Simon’s spot? You really want to see Big Pasta pitching in St. Louis at this point?

  3. Ludwick loves hitting in Colorado. Let him play all 4 games and hopefully show he’s still got something left, it might attract a desperate suitor.

    • What do you want to bet that Ludwick is sitting on the bench tomorrow. Bryan Price was Dusty’s right hand man for a reason, Price was of the same mindset as Dusty when it came to managing philosophy.

  4. If Homer were still in the rotation, I’d say: “Hey the Reds can still win the next 3, like they did against the Indians.” Instead I’ll say: “Hey the Reds can win the next two.”
    De La Rosa is the best starter the Reds will see in this series.

  5. Reminds me of a few times where the Reds wilted in August. 1987, 2006, I’m sure there are others.

  6. Milton looks happy about the situation to me. Chad has always given Milty the benefit of the doubt.

  7. Splitting a series with the worst team in MLB is unacceptable. Losing a series to the worst team in MLB is inexcusable. Not sure I want to invest much of my weekend watching either happen.

  8. Why should we expect anything more from the team on the field when the club acknowledge’s Bailey is head for the DL but doesn’t go on and make the move to get an extra position player or pitcher into town for the first two games of the series? And we used to knock on Dusty Baker over a lack of urgency?

    I understand that apparently the org thinks you should be able to throw enough pitching at somebody to stop beat them even with no virtually no offense even when they are playing with a DH or in a place like Coors. So, upgrading the offense with an additional bat was uncalled for. However, do you suppose that if they had an additional arm in the pen tonight, Price might have pulled the plug on Simon after that fiasco of a 4th inning versus sending him out to give away the farm in the 5th.

  9. Its probably time to accept the fact that the Reds are not going to be in the playoffs this season. With that being the case, that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t root for the Reds to win every game. The Reds can still have a say on who makes it to the playoffs, how sweet would it be to knock the Cardinals out of the post season. Go Reds!

    • I came to the conclusion the Reds weren’t going to make the playoffs after the Marlins and Red Sox series. Homer’s injury just added icing to the cake.

      My hopes are the Reds can use the remainder of the season to see how well a couple of young guys can perform. While it would do my heart some good just to see Votto back swinging a bat this year, it would only serve to show he is over the injury. I have no doubt Votto can hit whenever he recovers. We don’t need to see too much more of Schumaker. Thanks for the grit.

    • I’m kind of on the same page here Sarg, I just don’t see any continuous momentum from this club, but that being said, “Just when I think they can’t get any lower………They go and TOTALLY REDEEM THEMSELVES!

    • I am the same as other responses. The home stand indicated they could seize an opportunity, then Homer’s injury made it clear the only direction this team would move in the standings is down.

    • They could play spoilers… I’d like the Reds to bring up Soto, DFA Jack, and let Soto play 1B most the rest of the year. Let’s see what they have. Does he have MLB value as a utility player in him? As a starter? Is he just a AAAA player? Time to find out.

      I would say Lutz, because I think he has a little more upside but Lutz really needs a full, healthy year at AAA. He is more raw than Soto.

  10. For some sick reason I keep watching the games. It’s like a car wreck, once I see it I can’t look away

    • Yeah, I think I may find myself watching more O’s games though. They are my other team because they gave me the best shot.

    • I enjoy watching baseball, at any level and I particularly enjoy watching and following the Reds, no matter how well or poor they are playing. I will continue to watch and follow the Reds closely through the end of this season, no matter how the season ends. I just don’t see this team having any shot at making the playoffs this season and I wish the season had a positive purpose and direction for the next few weeks rather than just going through the motions.

  11. Shut off the lights. Shut down Votto and Bailey for 2014. No need to rush. 6.5 back with no urgency on this team.

    • Maybe Votto can get a two for one special with CarGo on that surgery. Sure sounds like they are going through the same thing.

    • Well I think it’s pretty clear. Price is just not happy with Walt’s inactivity to get Price some better players, so knowing how Bob wants to win Price is tanking with the hope Bob will blame Walt and fire him and make Price the manager/gm he is wanting to be.

    • I would have never thought to bet the “under” on the Reds win total this year. I think most odds-makers had their over/under win total at 84 or something like that. I predicted 86-90 wins.

  12. Lets hope for a losing record so we get a higher draft pick and we can FINALLY DRAFT A BAT that will be ready sooner than 4 years from now. OH WAIT….Walt is the GM. we need to draft a high school pitcher and a college pitcher who was a reliever for our first two picks.

    • Like many hitters playing at Coors Field, Stubbs has found himself in the perfect situation as he nears contract time. It will be interesting to see if the Rox pick up his 3rd year of arbitration since Stubbs is already making $4MM and will almost certainly be in line for a tidy little raise through arbitration after this season. Stubbs is and has always been an excellent candidate for an OF platoon, but not a full time player.

  13. I really feel bad for the players. They go out and bust their butts. But they just went under water by going below .500. And does the Reds front office throw them a lifeline? No. Jocketty throws cinder blocks to them.

  14. Did anyone else notice that when Ludwick homered, Schumaker was waiting at home plate to high five him and Ludwick left him hanging and after he passed, Skip realized he was left hanging he did a little sarcastic “air five”. There was no way Ludwick did not see him there and it seemed a bit childish not to simply give a guy five that was trying to congratulate you. Also as Ryan was going in the dugout the congratulations and fist bumps toward him were half hearted at best. I could be wrong because the Reds were getting thumped but it did not seem like Ludwick has a real good connection with the rest of the team.

    • I saw that, but earlier in the game, after Ludwick’s RBI, he & Schumaker were clowning around back in the dugout. I think the “ignore” is just another way the players on this team find some humor & relief in the midst of another inevitable loss.

  15. It’s turning out to be another Milton kind of a season although there is a month and a half to go.

  16. The Reds offensive struggles and lack of consistency continues. Bruce was injured and has struggled all season. Votto was injured and is now on the 15-day DL, but should be on the 60-day DL and shut down for the season. Phillips has continued his offensive age regression and is now on the 15-day DL, ready for a rehab assignment to begin. Does anyone remember Phillips post-injury performance last season? Ludwick has little to no power left in his swing following his severe shoulder injury and his age regression. Hamilton had never proved his capability to hit AAA pitching and was not ready to hit major league pitching this season. Hamilton’s season-long performance, the June surge notwithstanding, has fully demonstrated his lack of major league readiness at the plate. The Reds offense is going nowhere this season.

    The starting pitching and defense has carried the 2014 team to whatever success they have attained and that isn’t going to change. Now the starting pitching is showing two huge cracks with no additional help available. Simon has nothing left in the tank this season. As expected, he has reached his limit of effectiveness and stamina after a spectacular 1st half. Bailey is now on the 15 day DL and will be out until the end of August. Cingrani in on the minor league DL and will not pitch again this season. That leaves two BIG holes in the starting rotation with no one available to fill those holes. The three remaining starters cannot carry this team. The only effective, reliable relievers are Chapman, Diaz and Broxton. The lack of starting pitching consistency and reliability is going to decimate the bullpen over the next few weeks.

    Any hope for a playoff appearance in 2014 is gone. The final nail in that coffin was Bailey’s trip to the DL. The Reds rolled the dice on Simon, Ludwick, and Hamilton and crapped out. Simon may be an effective starting option for 2015, but he has nothing left for 2014 and should be removed from the starting rotation, for his own physical survival. Hamilton needs to work on his fundamentals at the plate and on the base paths. Speed and defense are great, but if speed and defense are all that Hamilton can contribute, his future role will top out as a utility OF and pinch runner. I expect Hamilton will prove to be effective at the major league level, but he must have time to finish his development. Continuing to hit him leadoff at the major league level and expecting him to lead the Reds offense is pointless and counter-productive for both the Reds and Hamilton. The shoulder injury and age have zapped the last remaining offensive punch from Ludwick’s career. The Reds know what they have in Heisey, Schumaker, Pena, Santiago and Hannahan. All 5 players are utility role players at best, with some nothing more than lead weights at worst. The Reds should know what they have in Cozart and Phillips. Both are defensive stalwarts with limited offensive capability. Frazier, Mesoraco and Bruce are starters at the major league level with their long-term effectiveness still a bit murky. The final few weeks of the 2014 season should be used to answer staffing questions and prepare for a serious playoff run in 2015.

    Ludwick, Heisey, Schumaker, Santiago, Hannahan, Chapman, Broxton, Hoover, LeCure, Parra and Phillips should be placed on major league waivers. If anyone claims Ludwick, Schumaker, Hannahan, LeCure or Parra, try to work out a trade for some return, but if not, then let the waiver claim go through along with the remaining contract responsibility. If someone claims Heisey, Santiago, Chapman, Broxton, Hoover or Phillips, work out an equitable trade or withdraw the waiver. Transfer Ondrusek to the 60-day DL. Place Simon on the 15-day DL with arm fatigue. DFA Hannahan off the 40-man roster if he is not claimed off waivers. Quit signing replacement (or below replacement) level utility players and middle relievers to multi-year, guaranteed contracts! If Pena is capable of catching, option Barnhart back to AAA; if Pena is not capable of catching, place him on the 15-day DL. Left field, utility/bench positions and middle/long relievers are open questions for 2015. The Reds need to find out what might be available in house now so they know what roster holes (if any) must be filled externally during the off season. Lutz and Soto should be added to the 25-man roster and play virtually every day. Perez and Navarro should be added to the 40-man and 25-man roster and given significant playing time. Soto needs to prove he can or cannot play at the major league level for a possible off-season trade opportunity. Lutz needs to prove if he can play at the major league level for a possible starting role in LF for 2015. Perez needs to prove if he can play at the major league level for a possible platoon option in LF or possible utility OF role for 2015. Navarro needs to prove if he can play at the major league level for a possible utility IF role for 2015. Negron needs to prove if he can play consistently at the major league level for a possible super-sub utility IF/OF role for 2015. Diaz continues and Contreras becomes major options from the bullpen to define possible bullpen roles for 2015. Partch is added to the 25-man roster and pitches regularly for a possible middle relief role for 2015. Holmberg is added to the 25-man roster and pitches regularly in the starting rotation. Regular work for Hoover, Broxton, LeCure and Chapman takes less of a priority to getting innings and opportunities for the relievers auditioning for roles on the 2015 team. Regular work for Heisey, Schumaker, Pena, and Santiago takes less of a priority to getting regular playing time for the position players to getting innings and opportunities for the position players auditioning for roles on the 2015 team. Once the younger, cheaper players proven or disprove their major league readiness with extended, regular playing time, the Reds are ready for some serious and informed off season decisions.

    Take advantage of the remaining opportunity created by the disastrous, injury-riddled 2014 season, to enable good, informed decisions during the offs-season for trades and 40-man roster moves to build the 2015 roster for a solid, deep playoff run next season.

    • Steam release. i bet you felt better after writing that. I agree with a lot of your sentiment. But you didn’t mention one thing. And most of what you mentioned is going to be contingent on what they do. Do you re-sign Jocketty to a new deal as GM? Or do you go out get a young (younger than Jocketty) and rising GM or assistant GM from another club? Use some of those TV $$ and lure the best GM candidate possible, would be my suggestion. Then start the makeover for 2015.

      • Yeah, that popoff valve will never see a declining orbit. The decision regarding WJ and his expiring contract is an off season decision and I tried to limit the venting to the remainder of this season.

        But since you asked, I do not think WJ has been a bad GM, but I do think time has passed WJ as a top-shelf GM and the time is ripe for a change such as you describe. I say that with reservations, because I’m a firm believer in ‘be careful what you wish for’…

        My point with the post was that the 2014 season is toast and to utilize the remaining time for serious evaluations of the inhouse talent as a prelude to the off season decisions, no matter who will be making the decisions.

        • I understand about the remaining portion of 2014. But with a lame-duck Jocketty, they’ll continue to flail away until they are mathematically eliminated. If they fire Jocketty now they can begin the process as you have laid out. If they give Jocketty a new contract, then its back to the same ole same ole I am afraid.
          May I add one thing to your to-do list for the remaining of 2014? I know how you feel about it.
          Dare I broach the subject? With both Bailey going to the DL and Simon already hitting the wall, wouldn’t this be the time, if there ever was one, to move Chapman to the rotation and see what he can do as a starter??
          Or should I just turn myself into the animal police for beating that dead horse again?

    • I don’t agree with all the moves you propose but I certainly agree with the premise of the moves and some of the moves. The Reds have a good opportunity to see what some of the young guys can do with regular playing time at MLB.

    • I guarantee that almost every player on the Reds roster is put on waivers. It’s standard practice, which is why every August we see these stupid “Player X was placed on waivers” articles.

      • agreed. there was probably no one on his list that hasn’t been through waivers. Even though it is supposed to be secret, word seems to leak when somebody is claimed even if they are “pulled back” with no negotiations on a deal. So it looks like nobody wanted any of the Reds dead wood or at least not with their contractual obligations.

        • Given what has transpired in the last 24 months, it might be a real nail biter putting in a claim on Votto. The Reds might just let it stand to get the contract off their books and move forward with life.

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