Dan Straily has a certain ceiling. Today we saw just about his best game. Straily has proven to be a serviceable starting pitcher when the Reds needed one. But it’s hard to see him being one of the best five starters available to Bryan Price for long.
That said, as Matt Wilkes pointed out in his great breakdown of Straily this morning, the Reds made a nice signing when they picked up the right-hander after he had been waived by the San Diego Padres. Straily isn’t a washed-up veteran like Jason Marquis. He’s 27. If he keeps this up for a couple more months, Straily could be just the kind of player that can be flipped at the trade deadline for something. Or, the Reds could keep him around as a solid bullpen arm and spot starter.
The Reds bullpen was within one out of snapping an MLB-worst-of-all-time streak of allowing a run in 21 consecutive games. Somehow Ross Ohlendorf, who is awful, has risen to the top of the pile in Bryan Price’s mind. Hard to agree. Hard to disagree. Ohlendorf gave up a run.
Dan’s the Man Dan Straily had a chance to be the first Reds starter to get through seven innings this year. But with one out in the seventh, he loaded the bases and was replaced by Tony Cingrani. Straily gave up three runs, striking out four and walking two. That’s a good, not great, start but one the Reds needed.
Second to None The Reds struck for five runs in the second inning on homers from Brandon Phillips, Eugenio Suarez and Zack Cozart. Phillips tied the game 1-1 belting a solo shot to deep left field. Suarez’s blast also knocked in Jay Bruce who had doubled. Before his home run, Suarez had hit .186/.230/.271 in his previous 74 plate appearances, dating back to April 14. He had two more hits in the game. Cozart was back in the lineup for the first time since Saturday.
He’s Duvall the Rage Adam Duvall hit his second home run of the series against his former club. Duvall has the power to be a valuable major league left fielder. He needs to improve his batting average and walk-rate to be a well-rounded hitter. Jury is still out on his defense in the outfield, but early returns are positive.
Bullpen Report Tony Cingrani pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the seventh inning, inducing a sacrifice fly and a ground ball. Cingrani followed that up with an easy 8th inning. Brantley: “Tony Cingrani threw the ball awfully good today.” Ross Ohlendorf gave up two doubles with two outs, giving up a run. Reminder that Ohlendorf isn’t good.
Injury Roll Call Anthony DeSclafani says he feels close to returning from his strained oblique injury. Billy Hamilton jammed the thumb that he hurt leaping over the fence in St. Louis and missed the start. He was available to pinch run. Devin Mesoraco is getting a second opinion on the best course of action for his torn labrum. Unlike with his hip injury last year, Mesoraco can hurt his shoulder worse by playing more, so surgery now seems like the right move.
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.