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.

STARTING PITCHERS

PITCHER ERA FIP HR/9 BB% K%
John Lackey 2.78 3.45 0.7 5.7% 17.7%
Anthony DeSclafani 3.75 3.96 0.8 9.0% 16.8%

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.

STARTING LINEUPS
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.

  1. Matt Carpenter (L) 3B
  2. Stephen Piscotty (R) LF
  3. Jason Heyward (L) RF
  4. Jhonny Peralta (R) SS
  5. Brandon Moss (L) 1B
  6. Yadier Molina (R) C
  7. Kolten Wong (L) 2B
  8. Randal Grichuk (R) CF
  9. John Lackey (R) P

The Reds lineup features what has been the regular starting eight:

  1. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
  2. Joey Votto (L) 1B
  3. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
  4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
  5. Marlon Byrd (R) LF
  6. Brayan Pena (S) C
  7. Eugenio Suarez (R) SS
  8. Anthony DeSclafani (R) P
  9. Billy Hamilton (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 Triple‐A 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 ILʹs most potent offenses, shutting out Charlotte for 8.0 innings while allowing just three hits and a walk. He punched out ten in the 3‐1 victory, his fourth at the Triple‐A 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 3‐1 lead in a game the Bats ultimately won 4‐3 in 14 innings. Since his early‐July promotion, Stephenson now has an ERA of 2.25 with 36 strikeouts in 36.0 innings. 22‐year‐old Robert Stephenson is rated by Baseball America as the top prospect in the Reds organization. He was a Double‐A Southern League All‐Star in 2014, one season after being named the Reds Minor League Pitcher of the Year. He was the organizationʹs 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.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS
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.

GO REDS!!

50 Responses

    • Tom Gray

      As will the Reds. 5 rookie SP in rotation. Best Closer in NL, then Hoover, and iffy bullpen.

  1. George Mirones

    When Walt goes shopping at the Winter meetings and everybody else is looking for pitching, Walt’s appointment book just may have a names (MLB bats) that others may be interested in. 🙂

    • Tom Gray

      A lot of people don’t like Jocketty but he is a good trader as GM.

      He throws a clunker sometimes but usually gets reasonable (to good) value in return.

  2. Nick Carrington

    Tonight in AA: Jesse Winker is 3 for 3 with a walk and a homerun.

    Alex Blandino is 2 for 3 with a walk, double, and homerun.

    • tct

      I’d like to see Blandino in Pensacola. He’s leading the Florida State League in both OPS and wRC+. The only qualified hitter in the league with an OPS over .800!

      • tct

        Oops. Blandino did get called up. Just saw that.

  3. msanmoore

    Let’s go Disco!!! Nice first inning.

  4. Indy Red Man

    I wonder if they should bring back Byrd? He’s been raking since April. 2-out rbis are like 3rd down % in football. It seems like whoever converts those is going to win. Bruce looks awesome too….driving the balls out over the plate and now he’s inside outing the inside pitches the other way like Votto!!

    • msanmoore

      Had a similar thought … but I wouldn’t do it at $8MM. Just too steep a price. Heck, we could get 4 of Skip for that, couldn’t we?

      • Tom Gray

        Schumaker is a good PH off the bench. Byrd is better starting. Apples and oranges.

      • msanmoore

        Well, in addition to the fruit salad … I was kidding. 🙂

  5. msanmoore

    Too bad Billy wasn’t on for that swinging bunt. Oh, that’s right … first pitch weak swings rarely get on. At least attempt the bunt in that case.

  6. msanmoore

    Lackey didn’t help out The Neck Tattoo on that one.

  7. msanmoore

    Todd needs to let Joey and Jay find his wallet for him.

  8. tct

    Would love for somebody to find Joey’s numbers in the first 2 or 3 games after he gets a day off. It seems like he always comes back raking.

  9. seat101

    it’s just a shame that this baseball game is getting in the way of the telethon.

  10. msanmoore

    78 through 5 with 7 K’s … this is the kind of future I like to see.

  11. msanmoore

    I think I like a nice, tight game like this … nah! On second thought I’d love to see us light the WLB’s up!

  12. msanmoore

    Biscotti doing his best Neck Tattoo impersonation – grounder to Todd for the 3rd out.

  13. Vicferrari

    Badenhop might have the best ERA out of the bullpen since April, can anybody confirm?

    • BigRedMike

      ERA is under 2 since the end of April

  14. msanmoore

    OK, and Skip does what Skip does best. Coming off the bench cold and hitting is a unique talent.

    • Vicferrari

      Someone needs that talent in October, what is it worth as a waiver deal

      • msanmoore

        Very true, Vic. You do really need it in October.

      • mtkal

        If Walt can sell that to someone, I may have to take back a few things.

  15. earmbrister

    Soft grounder for a single by Skippy. That’ll work.

    • msanmoore

      Like a croquet ball through wickets.

  16. msanmoore

    Somebody got a stat on Billy’s bunt success when he’s “distracted” with a man on?

    • earmbrister

      Must be Schumaker’s blinding speed that upset BH’s routine.

  17. msanmoore

    Flash that smile Billy! We’ll give you a pass on the ugly bunt attempt for that.

    • msanmoore

      Yep … I think we can continue to work on the rest at this level.

  18. msanmoore

    Love it when Yadi can’t hit for spit.

  19. mtkal

    If you look at the numbers up and down the Reds’ lineup with or without Mes, the one biggest area in need of improvement is B. Ham getting on base. If he can somehow work on that the rest of this season and the coming off season, it could make a significant difference in the Reds’ run production.

    • msanmoore

      Exactly. His defense is top-notch. As our venerable announcers said, he should win a GG this year. In the old days, he’d go play winter ball in the DR or Mexico and work that out. Let’s just hope his off-season program can take his OBP up a couple notches. Leave him batting 9th and then look out! On base and 100 steals.

    • msanmoore

      Lost his wallet. Won’t let Joey find it for him.

  20. msanmoore

    All is forgotten except for the win. Nice 6 innings by Disco and the bullpen shows up in force. When’s the last time 3 runs in the 1st hold up this way against a team like the Birds?

    Night all … +25 for everybody because I’m feeling generous.

  21. RedsFanEd (@RedsFanEd)

    it used to be that This couldn’t find a way to get a lead against the Cards. Couldn’t get Chapman in a game. Chappy is so useful now.

    • Redfanjake

      Actually after tonight’s win 42-16 would get the Reds to 90 wins. Season is still 162 games, not 152

  22. Indy Red Man

    Suarez with another game winning rbi! Disco isn’t an ace but he could be a solid #3 and eat up a lot of innings with his solid delivery! A little more upside than Leake imo but time will tell

    • Tom Gray

      DeSclafani is a good return for Latos, whom the Reds weren’t able to sign as FA. And Wallach is a good MiLB prospect at C. Good trade by Jocketty.

  23. I71_Exile

    Nice win by the good guys. Beating St. Louis never gets old. Chris Welsh commented that he thought Disco had sped up his tempo to excellent result and Chapman through some nasty off speed pitches. Fastball looked a little wild. Mark Reynolds looked completely defeated after that first pitch change.

  24. mtkal

    Nice job by Disco and the pen, and what a catch by Billy! W for our side.