A win over Milwaukee in today’s series finale will make this a day long remembered in Cincinnati. Search your feelings and you’ll know this to be true. It’s been a long while, though not quite a thousand generations, since the Reds were above .500, but with a victory today, they would be 15-16. Others may crave not adventure or excitement. But Cincinnati Reds fans do.

Many doubters had a very bad feeling about the Brewers series as Ron Roenicke’s team arrived in Cincinnati with their outstanding road record. I found their lack of faith disturbing. Only at the end will they realize the power of Super Todd Frazier. The force is strong with him. Tucker Barnhart‘s homer was a great shot, one in a million. But it counted on Thursday night.

Certainly there was reason to worry about Milwaukee’s powerful lineup. But fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. Those who doubted Johnny Cueto have found it is they who were mistaken. The Reds ace can bullseye womp rats, Carlos Gomez is no match. To those of you worried that Brayan Peña is due for a bad game, I say never tell me the odds. It’s a trap. Once you start down that dark path, forever it will dominate.

Skip Schumaker leads off and plays CF for the Reds today, as the club inches closer to being healthy. Roger Bernadina has been sent to the space mines of DFA. Reds fans look forward to witnessing Walt Jocketty’s roster when it’s fully operational. Let’s hope Brandon Phillips stays on target after his three hits last night.

Yesterday, with a successful inning for the Dayton Dragons, Reds reliever Aroldis Chapman came one step closer to returning to the team. But keep in mind that being good against A-level players is one thing, good against the living, that’s something else. The major leagues ain’t like dustin’ crops, boy.

For the most part, Bryan Price’s squad has played well against first-place Milwaukee and moved to within a half game of second-place St. Louis. Perhaps Price has found new ways to motivate his team. At times they’ve looked lethargic, but your eyes can deceive you, don’t trust them. Here’s the full line-up:

1. Skip Schumaker (L) CF
2. Joey Votto (L) 1B
3. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
5. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
6. Ryan Ludwick (R) LF
7. Brayan Pena (S) C
8. Zack Cozart (R) SS
9. Alfredo Simon (R) P
9

It’s a beautiful day for a baseball game.

Let’s blow this thing and go home (or to Boston).

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Join the conversation! 271 Comments

  1. “I felt a great disturbance in the stadium, as if thousands of voices suddenly cried out in terror and suddenly silenced” – regarding Bruce’s at-bat.

  2. I thought Bruce would only be put in to face Lohse, given his numbers against him.

  3. Pena looks like 1 solid hitter – Bruce only when the opponents are throwing fastballs – typical Jay Bruce.

  4. Gomez is such a dolt.

    • Yeah, but I wish he was our dolt.

      • Man, I couldn’t agree with you more!

        • Gold Glove defense, huge power, great speed, love his in your face attitude/swagger.

      • I just went to look up his WAR (1.3) and found something interesting… our boy Super Todd Frazier is tied with Gomez for 10th in the NL in WAR! Not bad! Also, that leads the Reds batters by a wide margin. (Mostly on the strength of his defense, of course).

  5. These guys are not seeing the ball out of Parra’s hand at all right now.

  6. That Bruce AB reminded me of Porkins, screaming & crashing his hit, burning X-Wing fighter, into the Death Star.

  7. Never heard of this Will Smith but he just completely shut those lefties down.

  8. BP!!!! Yeah baby!

  9. BP !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. BP!!! He looks like a new man after that day off!

  11. I wonder what Brewer fans think about pitching match-ups?

  12. Big hit for BP. First home run in a month.

  13. “The Force is with you young Phillips. But you are not an MVP yet.”

  14. BP with the big knock… Yeah, baby.

  15. That ball was hit a MILE. Can’t remember the last time I saw him hit a ball that far. Off the bat it looked like it was straight up in the air and it still hit off the batter’s eye. Wow.

  16. Yea, BP is washed up – move him to 7th in the line-up – why when he’s just heating up !!

    BP stays in the third spot – move Jay Bruce down.

  17. Phillips looked exactly like Willy Mays Hayes on that replay.

  18. DatDude.

  19. Now if only your boy can start figuring out the strike zone we might have something

  20. or how to lay off off speed pitches in the dirt

    • I’m in agreement. Bruce is 0-1 in his last 1 AB. Do you think we can trade him to NYY?

  21. Is it physically impossible to have a called strike on Lucroy? Or were those pitches that bad ???

  22. “I have a very bad feeling about this”

  23. Aramis Ramirez is a double play machine. Lots of ground balls and sloooooow.

    • If they were giving MVP’s for the series he might be that for the Reds, how many in this series?

  24. geez, lifetime against Broxton, Ramirez is 7-for-10, Kelch says ….. And before I could hit send to try to jinx him, he hit into the DP!!!

    • Ramirez is not who he used to be.

      • He’s still got the power. He’s also a notorious second-half hitter. But yeah, he’s seemed kinda not too scary in this series, other than that one home run.

  25. Broxton decides who he’ll pitch to, and who he won’t. Even though Lucroy was leading off, he pitched around him.

  26. Reds win it on a Zach Cozart walk off.

  27. BROXton.

  28. nice job Brox

  29. Did anyone hear what happened to Pena? A little late to the party.

    • I think Price just wanted some speed at 3rd to score that run.

    • radio crew hasn’t given an update.

      but he pulled up after breaking for second base on a hit and run, ball was hit foul. He stayed in the game, went first to third on a single, but got pulled for a pinch runner at third base.

  30. Man Broxton is bringing it so far this year. When Chappy gets back this bullpen is gonna be nails!

  31. You are crazy. 31 teams would line up for Bruce with his current contract. Teams don’t usually make decisions based on a months worth of games.

  32. Broxton’s a smart pitcher. That was the heart of the Brewers order, but he knew that Lucroy is dangerous and the guys batting behind him are past their prime.

  33. if it comes down to Broxton’s spot, they seriously might have to pinch hit Leake…
    need Soto for back-up catcher and need a back utility player

  34. Now I wish the Reds had saved Hamilton.

    • Yeah, anyone but Luddy on first in the bottom of the ninth. Guess someone will just have to go out the front door.

    • Exactly what I was think, wasted his speed and much better to have pena up, hope he is not hurt

  35. No OF to play for Ludwick if did pinch run for him.

  36. Our catcher’s spot has done it all. I am impressed.

  37. Whoever said it earlier, definitely agree it would be great for the team if Cozart could produce a walk off

  38. Bruce and Cozart attended the same batting academy

  39. With Bruce and Hamilton unavailable to play the OF, you can’t pinch run for Ludwick at all. No one to play OF if the run doesn’t score.

  40. Cozart draws a walk????

  41. I really think I would use Leake to pinch hit here. Not just because of the bat, but we are mighty short on position players.

    • feel the same way,the position players just are not very good mlb hitters

  42. It would be interesting to see a stat about how often Phillips and Cozart walk in the same game, and then relate that to other unlikely occurrences within baseball, such as no-hitters.

    • Without having access to game-by-game logs, my math tells me that, given Phillips walking 39 times last year and Cozart walking 26 times last year, their expected amount of games where they both have a walk is 7.2. So, maybe slightly more likely than a no-hitter 🙂

  43. I’ll take a wild pitch here. C’mon Skip. Time to rid yourself of this Cardinal stink.

  44. We need Schumaker to walk to Votto can get a walk-off walk!

  45. Zach Duke??? He owes a win from last year against the Brewers if I remember, toss one in the dirt for old times sake

  46. I’ll take that from Santiago. We are screwed if this game goes long. We have literally no one left on the bench except Soto. I wonder if Broxton can hit?

  47. He still smells like a Cardinal.

  48. Well, the Skip project is pretty terrible so far in Cincinnati.

    And Votto gets to hit again with no ducks on the pond!

  49. Disappointing start to the Skip Schumaker Era.

  50. Reds bullpen is in better shape now. The bench on the other hand …

  51. LeCure grooved that fastball. Davis thrives on fastballs.

    • Simon was doing the same thing. Don’t know what report these guys are using.

      • And last year the Reds lost 3 games on fast balls to Davis. I’ve watched other teams pitch him with breaking stuff and fastballs that are out of the strike zone.

  52. Hey Skip, glad you deemed yourself fit to play. Pretty sure we coulda gotten something more from Bernadina today. Christ.

  53. Barnhart with a heads up play.

    • I like this kid! Hopefully he can hit enough to be a staple in the bigs at some point!

  54. Sorry for my delayed reaction. I had to throw up in the bathroom first.

  55. I just now tuned in. What’s up with this Dusty-like lineup? CF leads off because they’re in CF, RF bats cleanup because they’re a corner outfielder, C has to bat way down there?

    Well, at least BP looks like he’s hitting again and Votto has a couple hits. Positives.

  56. That was one of the most pathetic bunt-pop-up-outs I’ve ever seen.

  57. Wow, not even close. Gomez up with two on. Scary.

  58. I’m walking Gomez now, but worried about Sam’s control with bases loaded.

  59. Guess that’s one way to keep Gomez from swinging.

  60. This is not a good turn of events. Looks like that slipped out of Sam’s hand.

  61. Fabulous pitching by LeCure to Gomez. Three really nasty pitches.

  62. Nice comeback, LeSam!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  63. Wow. Of course I didn’t want to see LeCure walk Schaefer, but I could understand his trying to strike him out with a breaking pitch. But after that pitch over Gomez’ head, I was wondering what was wrong. Anyway now it’s time to give him a birthday present.

  64. Phew. LeCure doesn’t look sharp at all. Glad he got out of that.

  65. OK, Chris. Pretend you are pinch hitting.

  66. OK, winning run on first. Hero AB for Frazier.

  67. How about a Super Todd homer or double here?

  68. only question is, one hand or two ?

  69. Patience. This guy can’t buy a strike.

  70. SUPER TODD! REDS WIN!

  71. Brantley: They’re gonna send him. There’s no arm in left field.

  72. THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT!!!!!!!!!!!!

  73. thank you Toddfather

  74. TODDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!

  75. 3 out of 4, they really needed that.

  76. FRAZIER !!!!! Heisey can motor, wow. I thought the play to the plate was going to be closer. Happy 30th birthday, Sam !!!

  77. Todd’s interview with Jeff Piecoro was great! I hope he sticks around in Cincy for awhile.

    • Todd has shown me this year that he might not be a HOFer, but he belongs manning 3B for the Reds for a long time. He’s the heart and soul of this team.

      • As much as I love this team we don’t have any future HOFers on our roster. What a silly thing to say about Frazier, let’s wait until he has 4 or 5 great seasons when he is yet to have even 1.
        Votto and Phillips aren’t even HOFers at this point. Brandon is sitting on the fence and if he has a productive 2 or 3 years he could do it. Votto is downward trending, looks like his MVP season was his peak and I doubt we ever see that level out of him again.

        • Ok Bummertown, USA. Take any talk of HOF out of the equation, Todd is putting up a 120 OPS+ season right now and seems to be proving he’s a legit major league 3B. Add in his clubhouse presence and I want his presumably very affordable contact on this team.

          Also, don’t sell Votto short. He could easily top 70 WAR which got Larkin in with one MVP and one ring. Hopefully Joey gets at least one of the latter.

  78. Awesome win for a banged up Reds team. 5.5 behind first place is a whole lot better than 7.5 back.

  79. BEST. GAME. OF. THE. SEASON.

    TODD!!!!!!!!!

  80. Nice double by Frazier, but free Heisey! That speed/hustle to score from first on a long double is so nice.

  81. TS: Our Todd is an Awesome Todd

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About Steve Mancuso

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky's Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

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