The Cincinnati Reds (60-82) start their last multi-city road trip of the season with a three game series in San Francisco. The San Francisco Giants (75-68) are on the outside looking in at the 2015 playoff picture. With 19 games left in their schedule, the Giants find themselves sitting 7.5 games behind both the Dodgers for the division lead and the Cubs for the last NL Wildcard spot.

The Giants have spent most of the season between one to three games behind the Dodgers. They held sole possession of first place for just one day on May 29th by one-half game. At the July 31st trade deadline, they were just one-half game out of first place when they acquired Mike Leake from the Reds. Leake has pitched well for the Giants, but they have little to show in his outing, having just scored 10 runs in his first five San Francisco starts (five of those were in one game.)

STARTING PITCHERS

PITCHER ERA FIP HR/9 BB% K%
Keyvius Sampson 6.94 4.74 1.2 11.0% 18.5%
Tim Hudson 4.51 4.46 1.1 5.6% 12.8%

Keyvius Sampson saw a good start against Pittsburgh (1 runs through the first five innings) derailed by a Jung Ho Kang grand slam in the 6th inning. Sampson was pulled one out into the 6th innings, and his ERA took another hit. Sampson has shown flashes at times but hasn’t pulled it all together for a full start since August 8th.

In his second year with the Giants, Tim Hudson has an ERA a full run higher than last season. He’s had two stints on the DL with a right shoulder injury, and his 12.8% strikeout rate is the lowest strikeout in the career of the 40-year-old right hander. Hudson is expected to pitch most of this month out of the bullpen, but with Matt Cain also hurting, Hudson is being used as a starter for this one game.

STARTING LINEUPS
Reds-Giants lineups will available later tonight: here.

INJURY UPDATE
Per Mark Sheldon of Reds.com, Jon Moscot (injury to non-pitching shoulder) began a throwing program on Friday and threw again on Sunday morning from flat ground. He will not pitch again during the regular season, but may head to the Arizona Fall League or a Winter Ball program to get some additional innings before next season.

Brayan Pena (right hamstring strain) did some running and swinging on Sunday morning. His status is still listed as day-to-day.

J.J. HOOVER – CLEMENTE AWARD NOMINEE

SEPTEMBER 14
On September 14, 1993, Major League Baseball announces a divisional reorganization to six divisions. Each league would add a central division which in the National League would be comprised of the Reds and Astros (from the old NL West) along with the Cubs, Pirates and Cardinals (from the old NL East.) The Reds would then go on to play the Giants for the final time as divisional rivals September 17-19 of that season.

On this date in the following season, 26 of the 28 MLB team owners vote to cancel the remainder of the 1994 season and postseason due to the player strike.

TRAVEL AND TICKETS
If you’re going to see the Reds on this road trip, buy your tickets through this TiqIQ link to get the best prices and support Redleg Nation. Enjoy one of the nicest ball parks in the country with the help of Hipmunk.com to watch the Reds take on the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants. Cheap airfare to San Francisco is easily searchable along with Hipmunk’s San Francisco hotel guide to complete the trip. If you’re headed to Milwaukee, Hipmunk.com has hotels near Miller Park starting from $ 58 and Milwaukee flights. And if you’re going to Busch Stadium to watch the Reds battle the Cardinals, reserve a St. Louis flight and save money on housing through Hipmunk’s  St. Louis hotel options.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS
The Reds can do damage tonight against another 2015 playoff hopeful. The Giants are barely in the discussion at this point and a losing series against Cincinnati will turn talk in the Bay to 2016.

Go REDS!

23 Responses

  1. Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

    I kind of don’t understand why Finnegan wasn’t called up and put in the rotation spot of Sampson. I understand that he isn’t fully stretched out 6 b

    • Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

      I have no clue how that posted but I’ll continue my thought here.
      I know he will probably end up as a bullpen guy but he’s a way more viable rotation candidate over Sampson. Why not let Finnegan go until he reaches his pitch count and then let Sampson or someone else piggy back off him?

      • Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

        Even if he only goes 2 or 3 innings it still makes more sense to me.

        Sorry for this posting really weirdly. My phone which I’m posting from is being uncooperative right now.

  2. james garrett

    Please don’t do Finnegan like we have done Cingrani.Give him a chance as a starter next year in the spring and if earns it then start him every 5th day until he proves he can or can’t in the regular season.This back and forth stuff only messes up everybody.No major league pitcher wants that and only a few have ever been successful in doing that.Cingrani may not have been the best example but does anybody really know if he is a starter or a reliever?

  3. Tom Reed

    I like Keyvius and think he’s better suited to the bullpen. Finnegan should be auditioned for the 2016 starting five.

    • rhayex

      I saw that and got really excited. The problem is that if the Reds go over, they’ll lose out on going over next year. Next year there’s an absurd number of teams that aren’t going to be able to give out large contracts.

      With that said, he might be one prospect it would be worth going over for.

      • Gaffer

        It’s a tough call, a 10 million offer would cost 17 mill and also 6-8 other small prospects. He better be good for that.

      • seat101

        I guess it’s true the great minds think alike!

        Is this guy potentially ready for the major leagues?

  4. ohiojimw

    A little while ago, I came across this article about 4 MLB managers who could be out of a job by or at season’s end:

    http://www.cheatsheet.com/sports/mlb-4-managers-who-may-be-gone-by-the-end-of-the-season.html/?ref=YF

    The four are Brad Ausmus, Fredi Gonzales, Robin Ventura, and Bryan Price. A common thread which jumps out about all of them except Gonzalez is that their current job is their first managing gig at any level of professional baseball. Ventura will have made it three seasons; Ausmus and Price two.

    • seat101

      There are two reasons why Brian Price should not be the manager of the Reds next year:

      One of course, is his participation with the USSR in the “Great Grain Robbery”;

      And the other is he’s not a good manager.

  5. vegastypo

    The more I see Suarez play shortstop, the more I like the idea of him playing left field.

  6. vegastypo

    If Marlon Byrd gets 4 plate appearances in every game the Giants play the rest of the season, including tonight’s game, he would finish with 557 and trigger next year’s contract.

      • Daytonian

        I can’t argue with your list. But I’d add a 6th: Lorenzon is in the mix as well and may beat out Lamb or Finnegan. It all depends on what they show in Spring ball–and if Homer is ready as well.

  7. Mack Ashley Potter

    You could replace Boesch on the roster with my grandmother and it would hurt the club no more than having boesch.

    • ohiojimw

      Just saw over on Twitter that based on the exit speed of the ball (109MPH), it was the third hardest ball he has hit this season. Neither of the two harder hit balls were HR. One was 1B the other 2B.

  8. vegastypo

    Just got back to the screen, looks like I missed a Bruuuuuuuuuuuce.

    Anybody know much about the catcher, Cabrera?