Homer Bailey allowed just two runs in 5.2 innings, and Marlon Byrd hit his first home run as a Red. It wasn’t enough though, as Kevin Gregg allowed the go ahead run in the 7th inning, and the Reds fell 4-2 to the Brewers. The Reds were still able to take 3 of 4 against the Brewers. The Brewers ended an 8-game losing streak, while the Reds fell back to .500 at 8-8 on the season.

Final R H E
 Cincinnati Reds (8-8) 2 4 1
 Milwaukee Brewers (3-13) 4 10 0
W: Lohse (1-3) L: Gregg (0-2) S: Rodriguez (2)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score | Game Thread

WPA 4-23

Biggest Play of the Game

According to Fangraphs WPA statistic (winning percentage added), the most important play of the game was Marlon Byrd’s 2-run home run in the 5th inning. That gave the Reds a 2-1 lead, and increased the Reds chances of winning by 27.4%.

Other important plays (+/- indicates how much each play increased or decreased the Reds chances of winning):

  • -21.7% – 7th inning: Jean Segura RBI single off Kevin Gregg with 2 outs. Brewers lead 3-2.
  • -16.5% – 5th inning: Aramis Ramirez solo home run off Homer Bailey with 0 outs. Game tied at 2.
  • -11.4% – 2nd inning: Adam Lind solo home run off Homer Bailey with 0 outs. Brewers lead 1-0.
  • -9.6% – 4th inning: Zack Cozart grounded into a double play. 2 outs. Brewers lead 1-0.

Player of the Game

Kyle Lohse: 7.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 4 K

Positives

Marlon Byrd hit his first home run as a member of the Cincinnati Reds in the top of the 5th inning off Kyle Lohse. Byrd is off to a miserable start for the Reds. Byrd entered Thursday dead last in the MLB in fWAR (-0.8). Byrd has been a “free swinger” to say the least. Byrd entered Thursday with the highest swing percentage in the MLB at 64.0%. Anyways, it was good to see Byrd hit one out of the park. The Reds will need a lot more of that this season, especially since he has yet to reach base via a walk this year.

Negatives

Homer Bailey’s velocity was way down today. His fastball only ranged from 89 to 92 MPH. Last season, Bailey’s average fastball velocity was 94.3 MPH (the highest of his career). The last batter Bailey faced, his velocity was 85, 82, 87, and 87. It was a good decision for Price to take him out of the game. I wouldn’t be too overly concerned about Bailey just yet. Brooks Baseball had Bailey’s average fastball velocity at 93.5 MPH on Saturday in St. Louis. There is always a chance that the Brewers gun was off. I actually recall hearing the Brewers announcers saying the gun was messed up last night.

Bryan Price decided that Kevin Gregg was the best guy to come in the sixth inning with two on and two outs. Gregg was able to get out of that jam, but Price decided he wanted to roll the dice even more. Gregg pitched the 7th inning, and after allowing a four pitch leadoff walk to Logan Schafer (a guy with a .601 career OPS), he eventually allowed the go ahead run to score. Why on earth Gregg was given the opportunity to get four outs in a tie game, with a relatively fresh bullpen, is simply amazing. Aroldis Chapman hasn’t been given that opportunity in 2015.

Outside of Marlon Byrd’s 2-run homer, the Reds Offense was non-existent. The Reds collected just 4 hits on the afternoon, and 1 walk. The Reds lineup without Frazier and Mesoraco just really just isn’t very good.

Bryan Price decided to bat Zack Cozart second, and move Votto to the #3 spot (Frazier had the day off). Zack Cozart is off to a tremendous start (leads all MLB SS in fWAR, wRC+, OPS, and SLG). However, those stats only included 15 games. Cozart has a career .284 OBP. It is simply silly to bat him in the #2 spot, and give him potentially more trips to the plate than Joey Votto. Also, it seems like Hamilton and Votto have a good vibe hitting back to back, and Votto has even said he likes hitting behind Hamilton. I just don’t understand why Price would mess with that.

Billy Hamilton was caught stealing for the first time this season in the 6th inning. It was the first time a Reds player was caught stealing in 2015. They were 17 for 17.

Not so random thoughts…….

Where is Tony Cingrani?

Skip Schumaker leadoff the 9th inning (batting in the pitchers spot) while Todd Frazier and Devin Mesoraco sat on the bench.

Around the NL Central

Pirates beat the Cubs 5-4. Gregory Polanco lead the Pirates with three hits.

Cardinals up 1-0 on the Nationals early

Up Next:

Reds begin a three game series in Cincinnati against the Cubs tomorrow night:

7:10 PM, FSN-Ohio

Mike Leake (0-1, 3.92 ERA) vs Jon Lester (0-2, 6.89 ERA).

125 Responses

  1. JimS

    Even if Cingrani came in instead of Gregg and kept the game tied, they would still be stuck at 2 runs and 4 hits, and going into extra innings. The team can’t hit, and outside that anomaly of a game with 16 runs, they continue to struggle against above average pitchers!

    • ProspectCincy

      Maybe. But remember that the Brewers may not throw the same pitchers the chose to throw if the game is tied … maybe the Reds are more confident in a tie game than with a deficit … you can’t simply say nothing changes if Cingrani comes in. Maybe Cingrani gets blown up too; you just have to say for certain “the outcome would have been different”. That’s the only guarantee to make.

    • Paul

      Came here to say this, basically. Leaving satisfied.

  2. Kurt Frost

    Kevin Gregg: Good for what ales the brewers.

    • RedAlert

      Bryan Price cures a lot of opposing teams ailments as well

  3. WVRedlegs

    According to most Major League analysts, the 2 easiest things to do in 25-man roster construction is puting together a bench and a bullpen. The Reds have the worst of both worlds.
    WE GOT WALT FOR THAT!!!!

  4. Dayton Ducks

    Why Price would break up the Hamilton/Votto tandem is beyond me…

    • Jeremy Forbes

      He wasn’t feeling the 10 game streak of Votto reaching base at least two times. Needed to change things up to try to fix that.

    • charlottencredsfan

      Not big on calling out “over-managing” but yeah, that was looking the gift horse in the mouth.

    • jdx19

      Also, even moreso than breaking up the tandem, I think this move shows that Price doesn’t inherently understand the view from The Book that your best hitter should bat 2nd. Votto should never be dropped down to 3rd. I thought Price had found that out, apparently he just thought he didn’t have a good #2 hitter so he’d put Votto there.

    • Seattle-Red

      It almost worked in the 9th with Cozart on 2nd and Joey swinging for the seats.

    • Kyle Farmer

      Excellent point. In game of many, many managerial head scratchers, this was the biggest one for me.

  5. sultanofswaff

    First base open, 3-1 count, and Gregg doesn’t throw his best pitch which is the slider. Base hit up the middle, Brewers take the lead.

    It’s the little things…….

  6. RedAlert

    Reds aren’t going anywhere with Price – dude has absolutely no clue

    • Tom Reed

      He made his name as a pitching coach. As manager, it’s the Peter Principle in action.

  7. ProspectCincy

    What’s all this complaining about Kevin Gregg?

    Dude LOWERED his ERA today. Woo Hoo!

    • jdx19

      It would be hilarious if it weren’t true!

    • Jay King

      Sorry Gregg is just terrible… Every time I see him come out of he bullpen I’m like oh no here we go….. At this point they should honestly release him but then Jocketty would have had one less move he actually this winter on the team… They need to call up two AAA pitchers immediately and get rid of Gregg and anyone else who has been sucking it up.

  8. sultanofswaff

    Whatever the beat writers do, they’d better not ask Price why Cingrani hasn’t been used lest they incur a 5 minute F bomb filled tirade about helping the opposing team.

    • Carl Sayre

      I have now figured out why Cingrani is in the BP if he was a starter Price would have to let him pitch. I will continue to read Redleg nation and enjoy it and maybe learn from your alls comments. I however have nothing to add i am sure that you all are or will be tired of me screaming for Price to be fired so i will just read instead of contribute.

  9. lwblogger2

    I won’t get on the team too much as taking 3 of 4 is a good thing, even against a poor team. It does feel like they could have swept though. Kinda glad I only had the Gamecast going and was at work so couldn’t spend all my time focused on it.

  10. ProspectCincy

    C Trent just asked Price if Cingrani was OK, and Price yes Yep; he’s available and was warming up to come in a couple times lately.

    So … it’s confirmed that Price just hates him then.

    • CTRedsFan

      Maybe Tony insulted Price’s mother, or something, when they told him he wouldn’t be a starter?

    • jdx19

      Hard to believe he likes/belives in Gregg more than Cingrani. Hard to believe.

      • Matt WI

        Very hard to believe. You hear about relievers getting buried in the bullpen, but if anyone has earned that distinction, it’s Gregg. Unreal. Price passed up opportunities to use Cingrani as the long man when Marquis was sucking on Tuesday, and failed to use Cingrani in any short term spot. He officially has no role.

        The Reds are already down a man with Mes, and may as well be down another with Shu and Byrd’s combined output. That puts them at 23 competitive players, and then Price chooses to just drop another one in Cingrani. Bizarre.

      • ChrisInVenice

        Why would a manager willingly make a decision that makes it more likely he will lose his job?

      • charlottencredsfan

        Lot of guys lose their job this way. Maybe he thinks because Gregg is a vet (been thru the fire), he is more reliable in the long run? He wouldn’t be the first and it’s old school to be sure.

        Cingrani is either hurt or Price doesn’t trust him. Is there a third option?

      • Matt WI

        I think you’re right, Charlotte… if someone is going to go down, they’d probably feel more comfortable clinging to known quantities than feeling exposed for thinking outside the baseball box. Feels like less blame when you can say “but I went by the book, trusted the vets.” The ever-fun, playing “not to lose” vs. going for the win.

  11. rfay00

    I’m happy with 3 out of 4…even the best teams lose 60 games a year…

    • rfay00

      Not saying that having Lorenzen, Iglesias and Lecure instead of Marquis, Gregg, and Parra is going to result in a 100 win season though.

    • jdx19

      Yep, this is the silver lining of the game, really. If any of us were asked 4 days ago if we’d take 3 of 4 right now and give up a chance for a sweep I think we’d all say heck yes.

  12. jdx19

    Is it just me, or do the Reds seem to have a habit of making struggling pitchers look like All-Stars?

    • lwblogger2

      It’s guys like Lohse that rely on getting hitters to go after stuff out of the zone and generally are control/command pitchers who change speeds and batter eye-level that really kill them. What’s funny is a guy like Marquis would probably cause them some trouble. In general, power pitchers with good stuff but so-so command are often the guys that the Reds can hit.

  13. Redsfan48

    Iglesias for Marquis. Lorenzen for Gregg. LeCure for Parra (with Cingrani becoming the LH Specialist). These 3 moves need to happen. Sooner rather than later. Otherwise, we will lose every 5th game (with an occasional lucky performance by Marquis) and lose a bunch because of Gregg and Parra in the bullpen. This team can definitely hit, and the rotation could be great with Iglesias, especially if DeSclafani keeps up what he’s doing. I see some huge potential for this team, but Price and Jocketty need to give this team the best chance possible to achieve that potential.

    • Jeremy Forbes

      Cingrani going from a starter to a LOOGY would be the biggest waste of Reds talent since they put Chapman in the bullpen in 2010.

      • Chris Miller

        Couldn’t agree more. If it were me, I’d have Cingrani starting in Marquis’ place next go around. Cingrani was outstanding, and then he got hurt. Heck, his first start last year was outstanding, and then he pitched hurt. This team has such a knack for wasting talent.

      • RedAlert

        Wasting talent – Complements of your so-called field general

      • Redsfan48

        The Reds I think have lost all faith in him as a starter, or he would have been in the rotation over Marquis from the beginning. Price said after the Latos and Simon trades that DeSclafani and Cngrani were the clear cut front runners for the final rotation spots. They must have seen something they really didn’t like to take him out of the running for the spot before we even got to the end of spring training.

      • jdx19

        SO, in other words, you’re saying this move in likely?

      • Jeremy Forbes

        I’m saying I am past the point of being surprised that Schumaker comes off the bench to PH before Frazier, Mesoraco, or Pena. So I am not going to discount Cingrani being made a LOOGY as a possibility.

      • Tom M.

        Cingrani is a bonehead with 1 good pitch. More a closer, at best, than a starter, regardless of one’s beliefs about Chapman, who is just a better pitcher with more stuff.

      • Redsfan48

        I don’t disagree, but compared to what he’s doing right now in the bullpen, this would be a definite improvement. Right now he’s a long man I think, and in the rare occasion where you need a long man, 9 out of 10 times the game is already out of reach by this point. And I also don’t like using any lefties as a one out guy, I meant more as the lefty half of the setup spot.

    • CTRedsFan

      Cingrani’s career BAA vs righties is around .200, he should be the 8th inning setup guy not a LOOGY. Getting rid of Marquis, Gregg and Parra I’m on board with.

      • earmbrister

        Yeah, his career BAA vs righties is .229. I’m going out on a limb and guessing that is better than anyone else, except Chapman, in the pen. There’s something strange going on with Cingrani; don’t know if it’s physical or attitude, but there has to be some reason he’s sitting this much.

      • CommonSense

        You left out the third and most likely probability, Bryan Price is in over his head as a manager.

    • redmountain

      Think you may have this somewhat backward. Iglesias is still a reliever, one who is not used to pitching 5 or 6 innings. Lorenzen would be a better choice to start with Iglesias in the bullpen. I am not sure how well LeCure is pitching right now, but I am fairly certain that someone else in the minors could do a decent job

      • Jeremy Forbes

        -LeCure currently has 6 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K down in Louisville.
        -Contreras has 7 IP, 8 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 13 K. (The H/9 isn’t very good, but he’s striking out guys like crazy.)

      • Redsfan48

        Ok switch those two then, I just said Iglesias because he was in the rotation before and looked awful good in his first outing in the majors. Ideally, they want to limit both Lorenzen and Iglesias’s innings, so maybe they should put one in the rotation from now until the all star break, then swap them to save the one some innings while giving the other a chance to build up their innings in the rotation.

  14. charlottencredsfan

    “I wouldn’t be too overly concerned about Bailey just yet. Brooks Baseball had Bailey’s average fastball velocity at 93.5 MPH on Saturday in St. Louis. There is always a chance that the Brewers gun was off. I actually recall hearing the Brewers announcers saying the gun was messed up last night.”

    Dang, Chapman was shown to throw at least one FB at 102. Wonder what it really was? 105 or 106?

    • Nick Kirby

      Ya, they said the readings were off early in the game. Not sure if it was fixed or not.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Pitchf/X has his two-seam average at 90.6 and four-seam at 91. 3 today. No swings and misses on his fastball. I agree with your point that he really had to pitch today, because he couldn’t overpower anyone. He said the same thing after the first game, that he was pitching to contact.

      • lwblogger2

        A little scary as I don’t think either of us want Bailey pitching to contact very often. Overall he threw the ball alright today and considering he’s just coming back from surgery I think we can cut him some slack as far as velocity. Let’s hope for his sake and the Reds’ sake that he gets stronger and that he can give them a nice season this year.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Brantley was saying today that Homer is fine physically, but it takes a while to convince yourself that you can really let go. He’s been pretty optimistic about Bailey in both starts (from a health standpoint, not pitching). I’m sure Homer hates pitching to contact, too. I’m going to be at his next start, which I figure to be Tuesday night against the Brewers again.

      • charlottencredsfan

        In the long run, I think that is a benefit. I’m holding off for 30 days before I freak out. Homer really impressed me today, took lemons and made lemonade.

  15. Chris Miller

    I wasn’t big on the Price hiring, because my fear was he learned too much from Dusty. I understood though, because his worth was valuable from a pitching standpoint. Having said that, Price really has no clue on how to manage a ball club. Why does Schumaker have to be the 1st pinch hitter in almost every game? Why does he continue to bring Gregg out in close games. Really, does he honestly think that Gregg is a better and more reliable pitcher than Cingrani? By the way, I was worried about Bruce after last season, and wanted him dealt. I thought the opportunity with the Padres was huge. I think Walt missed out big-time, not dealing Bruce. I think the habits along with the switch defensively have completely destroyed Bruce.

    • RedAlert

      Bruce looks like almost the same struggling dude at the plate as he was last year

  16. RedsFanEd (@RedsFanEd)

    I am so tired of Kevin Gregg giving up runs and Brian Price insisting that he be in games that are on then line / in the balance / tied / close games when everyone watching knows that he is guaranteed to give up the lead.

    And why is it that the Cowboy can tell what Gregg is doing wrong in the booth and no one in the dugout can? Or, if they can see it and Gregg can’t or won ‘t correct it then , as before, why is he in all of these games?

    Beating a dead horse. Just frustrating. Almost to the point of unwatchable.

    Building a case for his dismissal. I guess?

    • RedAlert

      Cowboy very knowledgable about pitching – guy offers great insight – enjoy listening to him analyze it – makes a difference when you’ve been there and done that

      • RedAlert

        Yet Bryan Price has seemed to learn absolutely nothing from his initial experience from last year – guy may know some things about pitching, but his managerial tactics/strategy leave a lot to be desired – even more alarming is his management of the bullpen, inept as it mostly is

      • lwblogger2

        I think Brantley would be a darn good pitching coach. Not sure if he wants to though.

  17. earmbrister

    I’m sorry but I’m not laying this on Price. The Reds are hitting .226 as a team, and you’re not going to win many games with 4 hits and an error committed. Gregg was brought in against the bottom of the Brewers lineup in the sixth inning; and he was scheduled to pitch to all sub .200 hitters. The man is trying to piece together a reliable bullpen, and tried to give Gregg a confidence builder, as well as keep his bullpen fresh to face the Cubs. That said, something strange is going on with Cingrani: I hope it gets resolved soon.

    • jdx19

      I think the retort most folks would say is that Gregg is clearly, far and away, the worst pitcher in the bullpen. If ANYONE else is rested, you use them. Gregg is your garbage guy, or the guy that pitches the 13th inning of extra innings.

      There is never a defensible reason, EVER, to bring Kevin Gregg into a game when someone else is availabe.

      That is why so many folks want to lay this on Price.

      • earmbrister

        Price probably was trying to steal one from the Brewers and keep his bullpen rested for the Cubs. No one is really excelling in the bullpen other than Chapman. Gregg also makes me nervous, but so do Badenhop, Hoover, Diaz, and to a lesser extent Parra. So that leaves Chapman and the mysterious Cingrani. Like it or not, Price is going to need to play these guys, if only to ascertain who’s the biggest bum. I’d rather have Gregg face the bottom of the Brewers lineup, than face the Cubs.

        Sadly, Gregg is probably unavailable tomorrow, lol.

      • Chris Miller

        Your philosophy is a bit off. Why bother worrying about resting a bullpen for “games tomorrow”, when you are tied in the current game, that is very, very, winnable? And again, why bring in the worst pitcher, more often than most anyone else in close games?

      • VaRedsFan

        I agree with a lot of your posts EA, but not this one. There’s really no point in saving the one’s you mention for the Cubs because the aren’t AS BAD as Gregg. That’s flawed logic. And I’m not sure why you like Parra more than Diaz.

      • earmbrister

        It would be no different than if the Cards were next up. Do you want your best pitchers available for the Cards or the Brewers? He tried to skate by against a very poor Brewers bottom of the lineup with Gregg. If Gregg can’t get it done vs those guys, he won’t be long for this team. As for Parra, Diaz etal, it’s not that I like Parra better than Diaz, it’s just that he’s pitched a bit better than the rest of them. Badenhop, while I applauded the acquistion, has looked poor from the beginning of ST. There was some talk that the lack of humidity in Arizona was affecting his off speed stuff, but he hasn’t pitched any better since coming east. Badenhop and Gregg are on the hot seat, but it’s not like Hoover or Diaz have come out of the gates strongly either. And that’s what my point was, with Price not having much to choose from.

    • RedAlert

      To heck with the confidence builder – play to win the game – Gregg gets lit up like a Christmas tree about every time he is used – doesn’t matter what part of the lineup the opponent is in with him

      • Seattle-Red

        I think Gregg is really Ondrusek in disguise. That’s why he wears those glasses.

      • Chris Miller

        That’s not cool! Gregg makes Ondrusek look like Tom Hume.

      • lwblogger2

        Honestly it could be argued before the season that Ondrusek would have a good chance to be the better of the two in 2015. I probably would have argued that in fact.

  18. ohiojimw

    Gotta figure Price was not really into this game for whatever reason. Most of the comments here have focused on the Gregg usage which certainly questionable to say the least.

    But how can you go quietly into the night in the 8th, down 1 run and not send Frazier or Meso to the plate. You got the top of the order coming after the pitcher’s spot so you certainly did not need to hold them both back; plus, they had Peña who wasn’t used. This mismanagement was as bad or worse than the pitching choices.

    I recall the post about that on the first Sunday of the season Price sent the message 2 of 3 wasn’t enough, that he wanted a sweep. The message he sent today was 3 of 4 is fine.

    • Aaron Bradley

      I really believe there are no in game decisions. These things are penciled in beforehand. Skip was scheduled to be the first PH off the bench regardless of situation. Gregg and Parra were scheduled for relief duties. He is following a script making him no better than a stupid computer AI.

      • jessecuster44

        The first thing the computer AI would do would be to fire Bryan Price.

  19. NMRED

    I’m pretty sure Kevin Gregg knows where Brian Price buried his dead hooker. No other reason he’s still in the bullpen.

    • lwblogger2

      Dude… You could have just said “blackmail material” without giving us the visual. Just a thought for next time.

  20. ohiojimw

    We used to surmise from time to time whether some of Dusty’s strange moves represented passive aggressive reactions to front office actions or inactions. However we never really saw any indication beyond the moves that any such thing might be going on with him.

    In the last week B.Price has given us several reasons wonder. Recall that aside from THE Tirade there were the curious remarks that the team anticipated losing to the Cards (OK he said they did not anticipate winning v. the Cards; but since every game has a winner and a loser, if one doesn’t anticipate winning, they must anticipate losing) .

    • greenmtred

      One doesn’t follow the other. He might, realistically, have meant that he anticipated playing and didn’t know in advance who would win.

      • ohiojimw

        As a competitor at this level if you don’t think you are going to win, you’ve already lost most all the time.
        And maybe this speaks to Price’s problem as a manager. Pitchers are often seen as artists and often seem to see themselves as artists. In listening to some talk, they talk almost exclusively about their craft and clearly imply if they practice their craft well enough, the rest will take care of itself. Maybe Price is of this school of thought and not really a competitor to a great degree.

  21. Mike

    Just 15 games into the season and guys making millions of dollars need days off?
    Cal Ripken went 15 years.

    Votto getting on base at least twice a game for 10 straight games, hitting .380 and leading the NL in HRs. Oh no, we don’t want that to continue. Let’s move him down the order so as not to bat too often. If it ain’t broke, don’t “fix” it.

    Cozart, the worst hitting starter on the team all of last year is red hot for the last 10 games, so let’s move him elsewhere and see if that cools him off. If it ain’t broke,…

    It’s a close game, or we’re winning, so let’s bring in Gregg to see if we can do something about that. What’s he got, 3 blown holds and 2 losses in 7 appearances?cant wait for a double header, a Price will have him pitch in both games.

    So Byrd’s bat finally makes contact with the ball and it goes out. NO walks, leads the world in striking out and not advancing base runners. If any guy making millions of dollars should be given a day off, it’s him!

    • Carl Sayre

      The idea of dropping JV down was beyond explaining but the fact that Cozart is hitting the ball in the 8 hole lets move him up and throw his balance off while we are at it.The good news is he got Frazier a day off…………bet that went over like a turd in the punch bowl as well. That fellow from “Major League” Lew Brown could probably close the tire store for one more shot at managing. (chuckle)

    • greenmtred

      How much they’re making has nothing at all to do with whether they need days off. Players suffer minor injuries all of the time, and it’s a long season. Run them into the ground before the all-star break and see what you have in September. Cozart is the second hottest hitter on the team right now, and since everyone here says (when they aren’t incensed because the manager isn’t doing what they want) batting order isn’t very important, I’m not sure why Cozart batting second for one game is such a big deal. Do you honestly believe that Joey’s rare off day was caused by his batting third?

  22. Scott

    I want Barry Larkin as the manager and Tony Perez as hitting coach. While we’re at it bring back Wayne Krivsky as the GM

    • Kyle Farmer

      I was thinking after the game yesterday who I would like to see as the Reds manager. Larkin is certainly on the list but will the front office be willing to take the risk again on a guy with no experience after the way the Price hiring has blown up.

      • lwblogger2

        My only question Kyle is why on earth would Larkin want the job? Not all players want to manage. It is a stressful job that almost always ends in the person not being resigned or getting flat out fired. If I was a former player and not needing the money, there is no way I’d want to be a manager or coach. I’d take a special assistant job or cushy analyst job way before taking an on-field position.

  23. old-school

    Admittedly, I don’t know and I’m too lazy to look up the bullpen stats on “freshness”. But, these players aren’t robots and its easy to pretend they are but you don’t know if someone is tired or has a dead arm or simply needs an extra day off, even though he had a day off yesterday. I simply cant fall in line with this argument that you “hide” a guy and only pitch him when its 12-1 or you are down 6-0….and a good manager should do that……they shouldn’t be in that position……Does St Louis play with 22 guys and hide 3? Maybe Price is exposing him so Walt HAS to get rid of him. Its not the managers fault when a GM puts a player on the roster who isn’t an MLB player.

    • lwblogger2

      Not a bad theory but why would a manager burn through games that he needs to be winning to prove such a point. You can go to a GM after the guy gets shelled a few times in games that weren’t on the line and say “Hey, I can’t trust this guy to get outs. You gotta find me someone else.”

  24. chrislosolivos

    Cannot believe in the 8th inning of a one run game and the bottom of the order coming up that Frazier, Meso, and Pena sit. Aren’t we trying to win?

  25. Matthew Watkins

    Aw Meso….we are going to miss that bat this year. I guess it hurts your butt when you swing that hard. Here is hoping for a perfect surgery and a speedy recovery. Now can we get a left fielder that isn’t 40 and plays like it. I think his eyes were closed when he hit that jack today. Actually feeling good about playing the cubbies this weekend then the crew again. We must win these next two series to keep pace.

  26. redsrover

    It’s almost like an Onion article. With a Headline of
    “Bad Manager brings in Terrible pitcher to put a stop to winning streak.”
    “We don’t want our F*****g fans getting ahead of themselves and thinking we have a chance in this Chickens**t division.” Price was quoted postgame “After we won 4 Bull***t games in a row earlier this year, people were thinking we were trying to contend!”
    Price then asked reporters for a schedule so he could see when the Reds next play St Louis.
    “At least they’ll know what to expect the last week of July!”

  27. Jeff Morris

    Yes, I don’t know who is discussing these decisions? Wonder if they will stick with Gregg all year and maybe next year like they did Ondrusek last couple years. Not sure what the man crush or fettish is with Shumaker, everytime he is at bat, or most of the time, he makes and out. I wish C Trent Rosecrans would approach Price again and tell him, “I don’t care if you go on another F Bomb rant, the Cincinnati Enquirer, We here at Redleg Nation, and all the Reds Fans, deserve to have you answer questions on the baseball decisions you make each game, especially on using Gregg frequently, putting Shumaker in to pitch hit, and all other odd ball and crazy decisions you make.” “And, Price, If you don’t like us questioning you and holding you accountable, then at the end of this year, go somewhere else and become a pitching coach again…..Got It!”

  28. Boneill1621

    Price may not be a good manager, but I do wonder if there really is a good manager in the comments sections. Maybe if Joe Maddon was in Cincy but other than that I’m not sure.

    And maybe when Dusty was manager, what if Walt was the problem? Questions I continue asking myself and probably will never find answered.

    Either way, 8-8 isn’t good but isn’t terrible. It’d be nice to take this series from the Cubs. Winning record in April will go a mighty long way.

  29. vared

    What I don’t get is why the Reds seem so reluctant to make moves that would seem to help win now. Last year I think they lost a fair number of games trying to get from starter to Chapman, all the while Jumbo was lights out in the minors. Same deal this year – everyone knows they need reinforcements in the relieving corps and the answers seem pretty obvious, but nothing is done, and again it is costing them wins. I just don’t get it – it’s not like some of there guys were stellar in spring training. Are they going to wait until the second half again?

    • Matt WI

      I really do feel the Reds are organizationally slow to react to what’s happening in front of them. Patience, in general, is good, and I appreciate that they can exercise more patience than what we right in the comments section most of the time. But even just a little less of the guys that are hurting the team the most (Byrd, Gregg) wouldn’t be so bad.

      Leave Cozart where he was, leave Joey and Billy where they were. As long as that’s the case except for random rest days, then good. Why over-react to Cozart on a hot streak and under-react to Gregg and Byrd on a losing streak?

      • charlottencredsfan

        Matt, question on strategy: with a weak hitting lineup, do you bunch the productive bats or separate them throughout the order?

        Curious to get anyone’s take on this, as well.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Bunch them at the top of the order to get them the most AB.

      • Matt WI

        Do you mean long term or just on lineups like yesterday’s? I didn’t mean to imply I’m overly worked up over what Price did yesterday, but I hope to keep Zach in the back where he belongs. I just don’t believe he’s got it in him to be consistently different, and that what has been working for him shouldn’t be changed. That he’s hit like a 3-4-5 hitter for a few games is just a good run, it doesn’t change who he really is.

        In general I follow the credo of stacking OBP and SLG appropriately from top through middle. In my mind, Cozart is a very appropriate 7 or 8 spot hitter who just happens to have some pop every now and then, which is just a pleasant bonus. So in that sense, I like him dispersed in the lineup.

      • charlottencredsfan

        I get you Matt. I would agree that ZC is certainly overachieving but by how much? He has changed how hits. Billy Ripken does a great job of breaking this down at MLB.com. Search the video archive and you can see it. Zack is showing some legitimate pop and batting after Jay, Marlon and Pena; the opportunities to capitalize on that pop will be limited. I’d bat him clean-up, crazy as that sounds.

        If Zack retains his current hitting approach, I think he will be a weapon. Obviously, we will see but I understand your point.

        Really like that Cozart took the bull by the horns and made the effort to be a better hitter. Not a major change, in aproach, but so far an effective one. Go Zack!

      • Matt WI

        If he’s honest to goodness still hitting well for another month, then great. The big data says one thing, the small sample is saying another. He absolutely has to sustain an OBP north of .300 which is something he has never done in the Bigs over the long term. That jumps out at me. I’m not saying this means he can’t change and I hope it does. I’m no grump on him, I like him as a player and hated to see him struggle so much last year.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Matt, just looked up Zack’s LD% and it is “worse” than 2014. Ugh! Didn’t need to see that.

      • Matt WI

        And, it’s good to see the power back on for ZC… it’s been there (15HRS in 2012, 12 HRS in 2013). That it went out last year was more of an aberration to me than the fact that he’s doing it now. 15-20 would be amazing.

      • lwblogger2

        Exactly what Steve M says and also in regards to Cozart, I love what he’s doing but he’s probably a 7-8 hole hitter. Nice to see him hitting well and also nice to see him hitting for some pop. That said, his track record in MLB and the minors suggests he’s more suited to the bottom of the order. He is a little dangerous down there when he’s got some pop and I like that.

      • jdx19

        I ran Cozart’s xBABIP yesterday and it was .316 based on batted-ball profile, so the .340 he was experiencing was only slightly high. Reduction in infield flyballs is the main culprit for his increased xBABIP at this point (14% career vs 5.9% this year). I mean, sample size trumps all, but if Cozart has made a change that causes him fewer IFFBs, he could easily be a .290-.300 BABIP guy with his profile, not a .276 guy like his career suggests.

  30. Eric the Red

    1) We’ve learned that Marlon Byrd has a chance against soft tossers. Yay! Too bad we don’t get to face too many of those, especially in the playoffs.

    2) I keep pointing out that we have one reliable arm in the bullpen. Gregg and Parra are beyond repair. If there isn’t something wrong with Cingrani then yesterday was a little hard to explain. I discount Price saying Cingrani is OK physically; so long as he’s on the active roster Price would be nuts to say anything else.

    3) Odd how the announcers keep pointing out that Price doesn’t believe in overemphasizing left-right matchups with his bullpen choices, but with his pinch hitting choices it seems to overwhelm other considerations.

    4) Great, great play by BP to create that DP.

    5) I’m starting to worry just a little bit about Bruce.

    • charlottencredsfan

      Yep, Bruce is the one few mention. I expect a big year from him but he looks pretty bad, and has for a while now. Looks like an easy out. Think Byrd has provided cover for him. Come on Jay, shake out of it, team needs you.

      • lwblogger2

        Agree on Bruce. I think he’ll be ok but he’s really scuffling. That said when he’s hitting them he’s hitting them. He’s also taking some walks. Would be nice to see him get his average up some though.

    • Matt WI

      Just saw an article in which Price confirmed Cingrani has no injury. My imaginary follow up to that comment: “In fact, there is nobody even named Tony Cingrani on this team, so how could Tony Cingrani be hurt doing a job he doesn’t have?”

      • Kyle Farmer

        Add a few f-bombs in there and you have a direct quote!

  31. Kyle Farmer

    For all the reasons mentioned, it’s really hard to believe how badly this game was mismanaged. I had high hopes for Bryan Price but there seems to be no growth as a field manager. Instead, he seems to be getting worse. Someone mentioned the Peter Principle above and that is exactly what we see here. It’s time for a change I’m afraid but unfortunately, I don’t see one coming until after the season when Cueto and Leake are both gone.

  32. Philboyd

    Maybe the radar gun is off on Bailey. Maybe not.

    Worth taking a moment for nostalgia here. Remember when this guy was gonna win 250 games for the Reds and be a star?

    He’s 29 next week, and he has 58 big league wins and nearly as many losses in a career that, despite two no-hitters, is threatening to amount to very little. Probably his most notable mark on the franchise will be the ruinous contract he was given that should have gone to Johnny Cueto. If the next four years match the most productive of his career, he might hit 100 wins by age 34, when he’ll clearly be on the down side. Of course, that overlooks the possibility that he develops the focus, concentration and attitude of a winner and reels off some seasons commensurate with his potential. But that’s always been the dirty word when talking about Homer. Best not to say it out loud.

    • Kurt Frost

      Cueto wouldn’t have signed for that amount and pitcher wins mean nothing.

  33. spro

    The scary thing is, everyone keeps saying “If you told us we could take 3 of 4 before the series started, we would’ve taken it”, and “8-8” isn’t bad. But actually, treading water at .500 is terrible. It’s the last thing we need. We either need to be all-in or all-out. If Castellini says we’re going for the playoffs, then go for it and change up the bullpen. If Mes is out for the season and Bruce and Byrd can’t hit, then scrap the season and make some trades. I have a bad feeling that they won’t do anything with Cueto and Leake and get absolutely nothing in return, and we’ll miss the playoffs by a couple of games.

  34. Eric the Red

    I think I’m going to defend Price on the pinch hitting yesterday. In the 8th, there were two outs. If you pinch hit for Tucker with anyone but Peña, you basically burn two players. If the pinch hitter reaches, you then burn another pinch hitter with two outs. (If Peña pinch hits, he’s unlikely to hit a homerun and might have a tough time scoring with a double from the guy behind him.) Plus, it may be that we need to find out if Tucker can hit if Mesoraco is done for the year.

    In the 9th, we were down two. You hate to burn Frazier because even if he hits a homerun it’s not that helpful. You don’t want to use Mesoraco for a similar reason, plus he’s had one AB in two weeks and wasn’t getting on base very well to start the season. Skip vs Boesch? Eh….I’m not that enthused either way, but Skip will at least take a walk once in awhile–and K Rod has been wild–and he’s getting his third crack in three days at him.

    TL;DR: Not PH’ing for Tucker when trailing by one is defensible, and so is using Skip (down 2) even with Frazier and Mesoraco on the bench.

    • Jeremy Conley

      Why do you hate to “burn” Frazier down 2? What exactly are you trying to save him for?

      This is some substantial mental gymnastics to defend sending one of the worst hitters in baseball up to pinch hit with two all-stars on the bench. Wouldn’t you just want to go by, who is most likely to not get out?

      • Eric the Red

        Why not burn Frazier? Extra innings, or Bruce’s/Byrd’s spot depending on matchups. Based on his performance this year, relying on Mesoraco’s All Star status isn’t a very strong argument. My point was Price’s approach wasn’t completely crazy.

    • Lars Benders

      “If you pinch hit for Tucker with anyone but Peña, you basically burn two players.”
      So what? Tucker + Pena does not equal 2 players. But “THAT BEING SAID”, Frazier and Mesoraco not batting in that game (8th or 9th inning) is indefensible. Instead we get Negron, Tucker and Skip. The dreck.