Let’s recap tonight’s titanic struggle….

Cincinnati 12
Chicago (NL) 2

W: T. Cingrani (3-0)
L: M. Garza (1-1)

–Tony Cingrani’s return to the big leagues was quite successful: seven innings, two runs allowed on four hits and one walk, with five strikeouts. Cingrani was also 2-2 at the plate.

–Pretty good night for the offense, eh?

–Jay Bruce was 3-5 with a double, a run scored, and 2 RBI. Zack Cozart was 2-4 with a homer and four RBI. Xavier Paul was 2-4 with a homer, a double, and 3 RBI. Joey Votto was 2-4 with a homer, two runs scored and two RBI. Todd Frazier also homered.



–After the last Reds-Cubs series, Chicago pitcher Matt Garza got his underpants all twisted up over some perceived slight, and he proceeded to run his mouth about “relatiation.” Well, the Reds lit him up for nine runs in five innings. Me likey.

–Dusty Baker finally found an appropriate situation in which to use Manny Parra: with a 12-2 lead in the eighth inning.

–Redlegs go for the sweep tomorrow at the Friendly Confines, where the Reds have won 11 consecutive games.

Source: FanGraphs

Blame Chad for creating this mess.

Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.

You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

Join the conversation! 53 Comments

  1. And Thursday, too, right?

  2. Xavier Paul has done such a good job since he has joined the Reds, he has been a real nice find. Hopefully he can keep it going.

    I also really loved seeing Jay Bruce tattoo those two balls into left field.

  3. Good pitchers back up any smack talk they lay down. Matt Garza is not one of those pitchers.

  4. Hopefully we save some hits and runs for tomorrow against Wood, I want to see the Reds light him up. X Paul has been a huge pick up, he’s finally getting a shot to play and get regular AB’s and it shows. D Robinson also has been a great signing. When Cueto returns to the rotation, Cingrani needs to be in the bullpen. Also, if Bruce and Cozart hit the ball to the opposite field consistently, what a difference to this lineup that would make

    • @Josh: Putting Cingrani win the pen is insanity, after the Chapman debacle. Next thing you know, Dusty will be saying, “Well, the kid was a closer in college…” in favor of someone like Villareal, only a veteran.

    • @Josh:

      Cingrani to the bullpen is not a good idea at this point. Send him back to AAA and let him continue to learn the 2nd and 3rd pitches her needs. Call him up late in the season and put him in the pen. That is the best for both him and the organization.

      • @NYredfanatic: Yes and yes. I just can’t get on board with the Tony Cingrani to the bullpen call. Late season, sure, maybe you roll the dice if you have to. But he has way to much value to this team this year and of course next year (as a regular) doing what he’s doing right now. You really want Gallarga or Villareal out there next time somebody gets hurt starting?

  5. Nice win. Just some thoughts…when Cueto returns, how about using Cingrani in the struggling bullpen in Marshall’s spot, at least until he’s back. He’s a lefty who throws hard and it would be nice see him in the 7th than LeCure or Simon right now.
    And using Robinson in the 2 spot (drop Cozart to 7th/8th in line-up, giving the Reds an actual base stealing threat at the top of the line-up.
    If I’m off base here, let me know.

  6. Sorry, missed Josh’s comment above, my apologies. At least someone agress with me about Cingrani in the ‘pen.

  7. I’m sorry, but a negative has to be Dusty telling Choo sac bunting Cingrani from 2nd to 3rd. Giving a free out with a player who’s hitting almost 1.100 OPS versus right handers.

    • @ToddAlmighty: u R so right. Let him move the runner by hitting the ball to the right side or a deep fly – or maybe ven a hit.

    • @ToddAlmighty: Agreed. This is a perfect example of beating bad teams in spite of Dusty’s decisions and how it may have turned out differently against a good team. Against bad team, the silly decision doesn’t hurt us like last night because Garza underhands one to Votto who knocks it out. Had we been playing against the likes of wainright et al. there’s a lot slimmer chance Votto is able to drive Cingrani in. You don’t take the bat out of one of your best hitters and leave it up to one of your worst – especially when the runner is already in scoring position.

    • @ToddAlmighty: That was a… “So you want to complain about the job I’m doing? Take THAT!”

    • @ToddAlmighty: Do we know for sure that Dusty called that bunt? Is it possible that Choo was doing it on his own? Personally, I give Choo, one of my best hitters, a shot to drive in the run or at least move the runner over to 3B by hitting the ball to the right side. I don’t like the bunt there at all.

  8. There were no outs when Dusty had Choo bunt Cingrani over from 2nd to 3rd. I have no problem with that call. Get the pitcher 90 feet away with Cozart, who failed, and Votto, who delievered, coming up. Plus the score was only 1 to 0 until Votto’s 2-run homer made it 3-0. It wasn’t a negative.

    Xavier Paul is really looking good with the added PT. What a find. A negative, Ludwick going down, turns into a positive for him. Same can be said with Heisey out. This allows Robinson to play. Does anybody really miss Chris? Cingrani now 3 & 0 and will be sent down again. Good problem to have.

    • @sezwhom1: I think Chris Heisey would add a bit more options with the bench. Heisey has been a very good pinch hitter over the past few seasons and he is still a defensive upgrade on Choo in center for late game situations in big parks.

      Not that he has done a terrible job in his spot work, but I think Donald Lutz really would be served just getting to play regular time at this point in his career.

      • @earl: Ditto. The Reds are vulnerable now against lefty starters. Replacing Lutz with a healthy Heisey would address that weakness , plus let Lutz get the ABs he needs.

      • @earl: Actually, Lutz has done a terrible job, unless a .235 batting average with a .250 OBP and no power qualifies as anything other than terrible. Not his fault; he needs regular work in the minor leagues. This is why you don’t call up guys hitting .210 in AA.

      • @earl: Great post. I think XP should still be the every day guy in Left Field. We knew XP could hit for average. What we didn’t know was he is more than serviceable in the field and (WHAT?!) has good power.

    • @sezwhom1: Agree with you. Reds haven’t seemed adept at small ball, and feast or famine offense guarantees some famines with streaky hitters. Sac bunts aren’t always the right move, but the Reds, it seems to me, would profit from expanding their offensive possibilities.

    • @sezwhom1: That’s great: “Cozart, who failed, and Votto, who delivered”. Votto hit a *home run*. I’m fairly sure that the sac bunt didn’t help in that endeavor. That sac bunt was the single dumbest thing Dusty has done all year, and that’s saying something. I honestly can’t believe that anyone would think that that play was a good idea. It would have been a terrible call if it were extra innings and one run definitely wins the game, let alone in the 3rd inning of a 1-0 game.

    • @sezwhom1: Also, would you have Votto bunt with man on 2nd, 0 out? How about whoever the 8 hitter is, with the pitcher on deck? The obvious answer to both of those is “no”, just as it is if we’re talking about a guy who’s a great hitter vs righties, with a guy on deck that can’t hit at all in Cozart.

      • @Hank Aarons Teammate: Plus there’s always the chance that Choo at least moves the runner up by hitting the ball to the right-side. I don’t like the bunt there at all. I don’t know if we know for sure if it was Dusty who called for it or if Choo decided to bunt on his own however.

    • @sezwhom1: I have to agree with sezwhom1 on one point. I believe that at least part of Baker’s thinking was to get Cingrani 90 feet from home instead of 180. No one wants Cingrani trying to barrel through the catcher, slide past pads and spikes, or otherwise risk an early exit to the game or the season. So while moving him over didn’t make much difference in terms of the odds of scoring, it did change the ease with which Cingrani might cross home.

      That said, I don’t like the bunt call per se. Choo is a good enough hitter that you ask him to move Cingrani up by pulling the ball on the ground (which might become a single and leave runners on first and third with none out), or hitting a deep fly ball (which might leave the yard). No need to simply give the out away. And even if he fails, Cingrani could still score from second. Even on a Votto home run.

  9. Dusty Baker finally found an appropriate situation in which to use Manny Parra: with a 12-2 lead in the eighth inning.”
    -LOL … That’s tough, but funny.

  10. Does anyone know on what date the Reds hit 40 wins last year?

  11. Looks like they didn’t hit 40 wins until June 25th last year, and only had 47 at the AS break. Of course, they promptly won 19 out of 22. They’ll clearly (right?) have more than 47 at the break this year, but very likely won’t be able to repeat the streak of last July.

  12. Also, I’m going to go ahead and take credit for Frazier’s HR. Yesterday I posted about him not having hit one since April 24th. He saw that, I know he did, and he needed to stick it to me. I’m ok with that. Good game for the good guys.

  13. I think I might have been at the last game the Reds lost at Wrigley. That wasn’t the old Yonder-Alonso’s-head-off-the-wall-inside-the-park-home-run game was it?

  14. Nope. They’ve lost 2 at Wrigley since then. And I just noticed “relatiation.” Was Garza asserting that he was someone’s father?


  15. This just in—-the Cubs defense is atrocious.

    What a relief to have half the LF platoon solved. Sure makes Walt’s job at the trade deadline easier. At that point, he’ll have a solid read on Billy Hamilton and Ludwick’s ability to contribute, which will inform his decision to get a RH bat.

    Negatives—Hanigan. It hurts to watch him swing the bat because it looks so painful for him. He’s done as a starter………which means Dusty will get the memo in about another month and a half.

    • Hanigan. It hurts to watch him swing the bat because it looks so painful for him. He’s done as a starter

      Dude. You’re breaking my heart.

  16. When Heisey is back, he’ll definitely start vs LHP. Vs. RHP, if not Heisey then I actually think Robinson is a better choice over XP. He brings speed, good OBP, handles the bat well, and is way superior defensively to XP. He should bat 2nd when he starts, dropping Cozart down in the order. (Heisey can also bat 2nd; he’s not worse than Cozart. But on most nights, with RH starters, put Robinson there even if Dusty insists on Cozart 2nd when Heisey starts.) Heisey and XP are both good PH, who can hit fastballs. My point: I assume Dusty won’t actually try to start Heisey every day or 4 out of 5 when he comes back, but he should start vs LHP and I hope Robinson gets most of the rest of the starts because of his superior defense vs XP.


    • @bohdi:

      The crescent moon is in Gemini, which is lined up with the moons of Jupiter and Saturn. Freaky.

  18. Votto hurt his knee sliding into 3rd last year, which may still be in the back of his mind. He needs a third base coach who is going to give him clear signals. In a way, last night was just as bad as Sunday: Speir did the wrong thing again, only in this case instead of getting thrown out unnecessarily Votto risked injury unnecessarily.

    (He may have held up Hannahan because we already had a big lead. But he’s been shaky all season so I’m not sure he’d have sent him in a one run game, either.) At my job, if I repeatedly screw up my Manager would take steps to improve the situation and ultimately replace me if I don’t get better. I’d love to know what steps Speir’s manager has taken to improve his performance.

  19. Hilarious. I’m glad to see D Rob batting first. But then Choo is assigned The Cooler slot against a left-handed pitcher. Choo batting .157 and slugging .186. At least as long as he keeps getting hit by pitches (7 in 70 AB) his OBP plays. Dusty apparently just doesn’t care a single bit about the #2 slot in the order.

    1. Derrick Robinson (S) LF
    2. Shin-Soo Choo (L) CF
    3. Joey Votto (L) 1B
    4. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
    5. Jay Bruce (L) RF
    6. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
    7. Devin Mesoraco (R) C
    8. Cesar Izturis (S) SS
    9. Mike Leake (R) P

  20. Choo (.157/.332/.186) bats second. Who else? Frazier, Mesoraco or even … Izturis (.286/.333/.286).

    • @Steve Mancuso: But Choo proved last night he can really get a bunt down. That’s the most important skill for the guy batting 2nd.

      • @Eric the Red: I hated him bunting yesterday, thought it was the dumbest in game decision Dusty has made all year,but I will say that was impressive that Choo actually got the bunt down given where the pitch was.

  21. Let me throw this out there. Would the Reds be a better team by keeping Cingrani in the rotation, and then move Arroyo to the bullpen and give him the 8th inning duties? Move Broxton to the 7th inning. By having Arroyo pitch the 8th inning with his off speed stuff, would Chapman’s 99mph fastball look faster? Like its coming in at 105 without having Chapman ramp it up any? Granted, the opposing batters in the 8th won’t be the same ones batting in the 9th. I think Arroyo could make a good closer or 8th inning specialist and extend his career a few years. He only has 1 or 2 more years as a starter, if that.

Comments are closed.

About Chad Dotson

Blame Chad for creating this mess. Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, "The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds" is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad's musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine. You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.


2013 Reds, Titanic Struggle Recap


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