The Cincinnati Reds (47-56) have won four of their last six games against the top two teams in the NL Central. The Reds are using five rookies in the starting rotation and looking for their second straight series win against the St. Louis Cardinals (67-38). The Cardinals want revenge after being shut out in each of the last two games against the Reds last week. In 26 innings of baseball between these two clubs last week, the Cardinals only scored once on a grand slam by Kolten Wong. That happened 23 innings ago.
Tonight’s game is rematch of last week’s game #3 starters. The Reds won that contest 1-0 on a Jay Bruce homerun.
John Lackey has thrown nine consecutive quality starts with a 1.67 ERA during that span. He’s allowed two runs or fewer in each of those starts while averaging over seven innings per game. He was pinned with a loss in last week’s Reds victory as he allowed the only run in the game, Jay Bruce’s homerun, in the second inning.
Anthony DeSclafani pitched seven shutout innings in last week’s contest, where he allowed just three hits, three walks and struck out three. He’s gone seven innings in back-to-back games and hasn’t needed more than 100 pitches in either of those starts.
Matt Holliday is on the DL with a right quad strain, and is expected to miss an extended amount of time. Brandon Moss was acquired at the trade deadline and has been getting the playing time at first base the past few days.
Today’s Cardinals lineup.
- Matt CarpenterÃ‚Â (L) 3B
- Stephen PiscottyÃ‚Â (R) LF
- Jason HeywardÃ‚Â (L) RF
- Jhonny PeraltaÃ‚Â (R) SS
- Brandon MossÃ‚Â (L) 1B
- Yadier MolinaÃ‚Â (R) C
- Kolten WongÃ‚Â (L) 2B
- Randal GrichukÃ‚Â (R) CF
- John LackeyÃ‚Â (R) P
The Reds lineup features what has been the regular starting eight:
- Brandon PhillipsÃ‚Â (R) 2B
- Joey VottoÃ‚Â (L) 1B
- Todd FrazierÃ‚Â (R) 3B
- Jay BruceÃ‚Â (L) RF
- Marlon ByrdÃ‚Â (R) LF
- Brayan PenaÃ‚Â (S) C
- Eugenio SuarezÃ‚Â (R) SS
- Anthony DeSclafaniÃ‚Â (R) P
- Billy HamiltonÃ‚Â (S) CF
MANNY PARRA BACK
Manny Parra has been activated from the disabled list while Kyle Waldrop returns to AAA.
ROBERT STEPHENSON – IL PLAYER OF THE WEEK
From the Louisville Bats, Reds starting pitcher prospect Robert Stephenson was named International League Player of the Week for the period of July 28 to August 2:
Entering the week with only four career starts at the TripleÃ¢â‚¬ÂA level, Bats righty Robert Stephenson allowed just one run over a pair of strong outings and led the International League with 15 strikeouts. He was brilliant at home Tuesday night against one of the ILÃŠÂ¹s most potent offenses, shutting out Charlotte for 8.0 innings while allowing just three hits and a walk. He punched out ten in the 3Ã¢â‚¬Â1 victory, his fourth at the TripleÃ¢â‚¬ÂA level in as many decisions. Sunday evening facing Toledo, Stephenson gave up three hits and a run over 6.0 frames. He departed with a 3Ã¢â‚¬Â1 lead in a game the Bats ultimately won 4Ã¢â‚¬Â3 in 14 innings. Since his earlyÃ¢â‚¬ÂJuly promotion, Stephenson now has an ERA of 2.25 with 36 strikeouts in 36.0 innings. 22Ã¢â‚¬ÂyearÃ¢â‚¬Âold Robert Stephenson is rated by Baseball America as the top prospect in the Reds organization. He was a DoubleÃ¢â‚¬ÂA Southern League AllÃ¢â‚¬ÂStar in 2014, one season after being named the Reds Minor League Pitcher of the Year. He was the organizationÃŠÂ¹s 1st round draft pick in 2011. Stephenson is a native of Martinez, California.
TRAVEL AND TICKETS
Watch the Reds at home by using Hipmunk.com for Cincinnati flights that can be reserved through most major airline carriers. Hotels in Cincinnati can be booked too, with rates starting from $53 near the airport or the ballpark. For the best ticket prices, use TiqIQ – it also supports Redleg Nation.
All the Reds needed to do was get rid of Johnny Cueto to finally be successful against the St. Louis Cardinals. OK, I’m obviously not serious about that, but that’s just how this season has gone, right?
I’m excited to see what the young rotation can do. There has to be a healthy dose of optimism with five rookies pitching as well as they are now, Robert Stephenson on the horizon, not to mention Amir Garrett and the four pitchers that the Reds acquired at the trade deadline.