Titanic Struggle Recap

Reds lose ugly, dangerous beanball game

Your basic irresistible force: Reds vs. Pirates, hit-by-pitch, hit-by-pitch, Reds hit Pirates, Pirates hit Reds, hit-by-pitch, umpire warning, hit-by-pitch, Clint Hurdle turns purple, hit-by-pitch, umpire warning ignored, yapping with opposing dugout, umpire warning ignored again, hit-by-pitch, Starling Marte leans into a pitch, hit-by-pitch, Pirates hit Reds, Reds hit Pirates. The Reds margin of victory was going to be Brandon Phillips scoring on Jay Bruce’s home run after BP had been hit by a pitch (until bullpen). Reds hit Pirates, pitcher ejected, manager ejected.

Reds 4  Pirates 5  |  FanGraphs  |  The China Syndrome

Hamilrun Billy Hamilton scored the first run after tripling down the right field line. Brandon Phillips drove Hamilton in with a bloop just out of the reach of the drawn-in infield.

BRUUUUUUUUUCE! Jay Bruce’s 2-run homer in the fourth inning give him 126 at GABP, tying Adam Dunn for the record. Bruce also led off the bottom of the ninth with a single.

Vote Zack Zack Cozart continues to be the Reds MVP this season. His sacrifice fly knocked in the Reds fourth run and he made a dazzling defensive play on a line drive in the sixth inning. Strongly deserving of being elected the NL All-Star starter. Vote Zack.

Catching Fire Tucker Barnhart doubled and tripled. He’s hitting .284/.333/.433.

Today in Plate Discipline The Reds didn’t draw a walk in this game until Joey Votto’s two-out, ninth inning AB.

I’m With Price On This One Saving Votto for the ninth inning was the right call. If he’d been used to pinch hit in the seventh, the Pirates would have walked him with first base open. Then the Fyre Price! folks would have gnashed their teeth about the manager wasting Votto. At least the walk in the ninth inning moved Bruce into scoring position. Legitimate difference of opinion possible. But saying the choice was obvious and that Price is an idiot for saving Votto isn’t reasonable.

66 thoughts on “Reds lose ugly, dangerous beanball game

  1. At least we showed some fight. Love me some bean ball action. I know I am alone but I love to see the inside pitch.

    • Nothing wrong with pitching inside. And when you do, sometimes the pitch gets away and hits the batter. That’s baseball.

      But hitting guys intentionally because of some “unwritten rule” is plain stupid. The Pirates are a bunch of crybaby punks, plain and simple. If I was an opposing team, they would get ZERO respect from me.

      If you don’t like what the other team is doing, you don’t throw at them like a whiny 3 year old. You pull up your big boy pants and get out there and do something about it. Batters, hit a couple home runs. Pitchers, strike some guys out. Be a man.

      • We will have to agree to disagree. Intentionally hitting a batter is most certainly an unwritten rule and one that I don’t think is so stupid. Is it risky? It sure is. Just like sliding into second with spikes up is risky. If you can’t afford the injury then the players and the owners shouldn’t be playing. If a player can’t afford to be hit because he was showing off or the team was showing off the competitor then they should think twice about doing it.
        Not only that but wildness inside is a proven key to success with pitchers. If Bryce Harper had to contend wth 98 mph on his knuckles more often he probably wouldn’t have the numbers that he does.

        • Nonsense. Hitting a guy that had nothing to do with the supposed transgression is foolish. These guys are getting paid too much money to be losing playing time due to injury. And throwing at a guy’s head for any reason is unacceptable. If someone has a problem, try playing better. Exchanging HBPs accomplishes nothing. It’s easy to be a keyboard commando and call for some “bean ball action.” It’s quite another to actually have to deal with the consequences personally. Put down the Hudy D and relax a little bit.

        • Like I said, I don’t have a problem with pitching inside. And any batter assumes the risk of being hit any time he steps into the box. That’s just baseball.

          What I have a problem with is the whiny, immature attitude so prevalent in baseball. The attitude that leads to a lot of intentional hit batsmen. These guys are more concerned with their image than winning and losing the game.

          Take John Lackey, for instance. He gave up a home run to some kid on the Padres that ended up being the difference in a 1-0 game. After the game, what did he want to talk about? The fact that this kid watched his homer for a couple seconds longer than Lackey thought he was appropriate. Lackey should’ve been more concerned with the fact that the homer cost his team the game, but no, he’d rather talk about he got “shown up” by the batter. Lackey’s manager needs to tell him to man up and deal with it. If you can’t handle the other team hitting home runs, then quit throwing meatballs or just quit the sport altogether.

          Baseball is a man’s sport, and there’s no place in the sport for punks like John Lackey, Clint Hurdle, and half the people on the Pirates.

      • I’m in 100% agreement with you on this. Coming inside is part of the game and when you do so regularly, you sometimes hit guys. Just throwing at guys though is bush league stuff that should stay in the bush leagues and not with million dollar athletes. I never felt that my pitcher needed to stick up for me if I got hit by a pitch. You want the next batter(s) to make the opposing pitcher pay. Then when you bat again, YOU make them pay.

  2. You dont even have to really mention the bullpen in the recaps anymore. Its a given.

    • I know our offense isn’t the greatest, but it isn’t that terrible either. Same with whoever we roll out there to start games. If the Reds can fix their bullpen for 2017 we are going to have a quality team for years to come.

      • The only problem is….guys like Duvall and Suarez are doing 90% of their damage in GABP and all those 365 ft HRs go away in most other parks. Of course the flip side is alot of our pitchers prob enjoy pitching in bigger parks but the other guys don’t require HRs as badly as we do. It is depressing though…leading after 7 and losing 2-3 times a week?

  3. I thought Delabar was actually impressive in the top of the 7th. He set up every hitter to strike out on that nasty splitter he has.
    Cingrani grooves a fastball to Harrison to allow the tie, and Ohlendorf loses another one.

    That guy is one unlucky pitcher. And there has to be, somewhere, a better 25th man roster spot than Jordan Pacheco.

    • And there has to be, somewhere, a better 25th man roster spot than…Ohlendorf! I would DFA him today. He’s the last pitcher I want to see with the game on the line.

        • The fan base ought to look up Warren Spahn, Bob Feller and many other great pitchers from the fifties and before.

    • Pacheco has been a below-replacement level player his entire career. There is most certainly a better (and cheaper option) somewhere out there. But, the Reds decided to light $300k on fire instead ($800k – $500k)

    • The Reds hit 4 Pirates, they hit 2 Reds. Not sure how many (other than Phillips getting hit) were intentional but if the Pirates had knocked down one batter than hit the next in the back and the Reds didn’t retaliate I’m sure fans would be quite unhappy with Price (or whomever). Much as I can’t stand the Pirates I didn’t see them doing anything all that egregious.

      • The problem is the perception: The Pirates retaliate, or seem to, for unintentional hit batters. It seemed unlikely that Simon’s first was anything other than a breaking ball that got away from him but, predictably, Hurdle calls for a beanball when the Reds are up.

      • I would be fine with the lack of retaliation if it was clear that the Reds were not hit intentionally. But the Pirates always think every time one of their batters is hit, that it was on purpose.

  4. Same old baseline script just embellished by hit batters. Minimal QS; Not enough necessary runs; Bullpen efficiently finishes the loss.

    I stuck to my new routine of leaving the sports TV room and turning off the radio when the starter departs the game. I leave the DVR on so I can check out anything worthwhile which happens after I left the TV.

  5. Pretty predictable ending….lol. Well that’s 63 or 64 homeruns given up by Reds pitching, already…and we are only in the 2nd week of May…..I think the NL record is 239 given up in a season, and the MLB record is 241 given up. Yeah, could see this record getting shattered. Lets hope some of the injured pitchers come back soon and others can possibly shore up this beleaguered bullpen…and maybe, just maybe the Reds can avoid the shame of being the team that gave up 250 or more homeruns in a season.

  6. Since the game was just more of the same; and, I haven’t seen any comment elsewhere here, is anybody else wondering just what the Bailey situation is all about?

    http://m.reds.mlb.com/news/article/177556894/reds-homer-bailey-has-setback-in-rehab

    Essentially Homer said he is no longer pushing himself to get back. He sought out other viewpoints and concluded that a (soft) target of at least 14 months post surgery was safer and better in the long run. He’s started throwing on flat ground but feels like he will need go back through the entire process of building his arm back up to pitch but there is no timetable for when he might go out rehab.

    I was wondering all along given the team’s situation why they were pushing him instead of taking a longer view like this. It was in the back of my mind perhaps they hoped he would have 2+ really good months at MLB and be flippable.

    • My physical therapist would agree that 14-18 months is the better course. And as noted, no reason to rush him this season anyway as there is no tangible benefit that I can see anyway.

      • And apparently there is hard data which indicates that the rate of a second TJ incidence falls off sharply in pitchers for those taking at least 14 months to come back to competitive pitching versus those coming back in less than 14 months.

        • The other thing, according to my PT, is that even if the pitcher gets full velocity back in 12 months, there is a longer period to fully get all of the feeling back in their fingers, thus having the command a major league pitcher needs to be successful.

    • Bailey is still getting paid, rather well. No one on this team seems to care about team performance. The Reds mgmt has shown they don’t, and now the players could care less. Great !!

      • It would be better if he rushed his return and damaged his recovery? For whom was he pitching when he got hurt in the first place?

      • Yes…they should rush a guy back from TJS so he can help them get to 78 wins this year. That is certainly what smart teams do.

      • The fact that he’s getting paid is exactly the reason they should keep him out as long as necessary. If he re-injures it, his career may be done and guess what? The Reds would still owe him all that money never to pitch again.

        As an aside, I’m of the belief that any player would rather be playing than rehabbing. The who idea that he’s getting paid and doesn’t care if he’s playing or not is rather flawed. Rehabbing sucks. There is zero glory in it.

    • I was thinking June or July would be best from the beginning but everything seemed to point to him being back by mid-May. I’m not happy he had a setback but in the long run, it may be better for him and the team if his return is delayed until July or so. A second surgery is pretty much a career killer.

      • I think what has transpired is for the better for Bailey and (probably) also the org.

        Mostly I am wondering why they were pushing him so hard (i.e. hoping to make him flippable by this year’s trading deadline?) and why he had bought in. I’m guessing the second part is 1)just because he is a competitor and 2)he probably didn’t know about the 14 month indications until he got his alternate evaluation (so much for fully informed consent in MLB).

        • Some players come back after 12 months, others come back after 14. You can find experts saying it’s OK for players to come back even sooner than 12 months. Some believe that older players can come back more quickly, but you want to be more risk averse with young arms. The issue with Bailey was the nerve pain that he felt in his last start. That’s common. Were it not for that, he’d have started for the Reds by now. I doubt he was uninformed about the 14 month window. He probably knew about 12 or 14 and was going to try 12 if everything went well. When he got the nerve pain, he (and doctors) decided to go with the other option.

          • It does make sense that he would continue apace unless and until he had a setback. Having the setback come right at the very end of the official rehab period perhaps makes it a bit harder to fathom than if it would have come a month or two ago.
            I do however still believe it is curious that the Reds would choose the more aggressive (riskier) path in a season of rebuilding.

  7. Maybe a lot of our other guys should (should have gotten) get second opinions.

  8. At this point, as bad as our pitching is, I would like to see the Reds go after one of these remaining free agents. Tim Lincecum, Justin Masterson and Chad Billingsley sounds a lot better than Ross Ohlendorf, JC Ramirez and Alfredo Simon.

    • And I guarantee Kevin Frandsen would be a better backup Infielder than Ivan De Jesus Jr.

    • Simon pitched pretty well last night, and not badly in his previous start. It didn’t escape my notice that he was not mentioned here until you called for his dismissal.

      • I agree that Simon has gotten better these last two starts, that said, he is a very streaky player. He had two terrible starts countered by two good starts. Still very inconsistent.

        • Jeff Brantley was saying on the broadcast last night that right about now is when Simon would have finished his spring training and the previous start was potentially indicative of that. So, not sure if he is just on a good streak right now, or as Brantley contends, he is now ready for the regular season.

        • And Chris Welch indicated that Simon was adversely affected by the chilly weather earlier in the season. Not predicting great things for him, but he may yet become a reasonable starter and regain his appetite for innings.

  9. I just read Homer is now due back mid-June. Some thought when I said we won’t see him until after the AS break, that was silly. Not so silly now.

    Remember, specifically, I said we won’t see Homer on a major league mound in a game until after the AS break. That, even if we did, it probably wouldn’t be at 100% physically and emotionally.

    • At this point the only thing Reds fans should be sure about when it comes to Bailey and Mesoraco is that their checks will clear.

      Obv they’re paying Homer a bunch of money but I would try him at closer when he gets back (Smoltz, Eckersley). What does he have 2 seasons of 200 innings out of 6 years in the majors? We won’t be able to trade him and he prob wouldn’t hold up as a starter anyway?

      • Plenty of pitchers make good recoveries after TJ surgery, but it evidently isn’t wise to man up and rush the process. How many players would the Reds be able to sign if they stopped the pay checks when the player was injured?

        • And, plenty don’t make good recoveries after TJ surgery. You just never hear from them because, well, they don’t ever recover.

          We should have never given Bailey that contract, anyhow. I believe the only reason why we couldn’t trade him before was we asked too much.

        • my guess is that at least part of Homer’s contract is covered by insurance. Most teams have insurance on pitchers (at the very least) with long term contracts due to the likely loss of the pitcher for an extended time due to injury. They may have one on Mesoraco too but I would be quite surprised if they didn’t have one on Homer.

        • Can’t stop paying players when they are injured. Not possible. His contract was insured anyway, so as long as he stays on the DL, the insurance company is paying him not the Reds. I am surprised they were rushing to get him back by May myself, or at all this year to be honest.

  10. Simon thought he was back in the Beanball War of 2014 last night. He wasn’t around last year when things simmered down a bit. He got things ratcheted back up. The one plunk, the one on Marte was somewhat satisfying. I didn’t mind that one. Clint Hurdle is fast becoming the Tommy Lasorda or Billy Martin of this era. A manager you love to hate.

    • Hurdle looked like Jackie Gleason explaining to the car thieves that they can think about it, but doooon’t do it. It wouldn’t look nice on his highway.

  11. Believe it or not, Jay Bruce is 4th in MLB in Win Probability Added (WPA), a stat that measures how you have performed in high leverage situations, essentially. Your “clutchiness,” if you will.

    MLB Ranks
    1) Cano – 1.88
    2) Harper – 1.85
    3) Forsythe – 1.65
    4) Bruce – 1.63
    5) Russell – 1.60

    Reds Only
    1) Bruce – 1.63
    2) Cozart – 0.78
    3-t) Votto – 0.71
    3-t) Schebler – 0.71
    5) Suarez – 0.38
    6) Barnhart – 0.10

    • There was a giant slurping sound, but we’ve all become kind of used to it at this point.

  12. The Phillies are now 20-12 since the opening series. How is that possible? They have little to no talent….maybe a few good young arms but nothing overwhelming like the Mets. I’m guessing they figured their pen out and aren’t blowing late inning leads every other day.

    • If a person wants to believe a manager can make a difference, Pete Mackanin isn’t a bad guy to believe in.

      In 2007, the year before Dusty was hired, he took over a sad sack Reds team that had gone 31-51 under Jerry Narron over the 1st half of the season and went 41-39 over the back half.

      I understand why Castellini wanted a fresh beginning in Cincy; and besides, the team’s 4-11 finish probably sank any chance Mackanin might have to be retained by the Reds anyway. Still, I have always wondered why nobody else would take a flyer on Mackanin until now.

    • Phillies have 13 saves and 4 blown saves. Reds have 3 saves and 8 blown saves.
      Sounds like the BP is a big part but not all the story.

      • Didn’t the Phillies trade their closer over the winter to Houston for a nice package of prospects? And then didn’t that closer that was traded to Houston fail to beat out the closer Houston already had that he was supposed to replace? Bullpens.

    • The Phillies are 13-3 in one-run games. 13-3!! Now, even if you believe that a manager and bullpen are what make a difference in one-run games, you still would have to consider that there is a lot of luck involved in a one-run record being that lopsided.

  13. Bottom line: there was one pitch thrown intentionally at a batter in this game, and it was thrown by a Pirate. And the “provocation” was a poorly thrown 3-0 pitch that didn’t hit anyone followed by a poorly thrown breaking ball.

    It’s ridiculous Ohlendorf and Price have been suspended, but not Hurdle and Nicasio. Does MLB really believe Ohlendorf intentionally put a runner in scoring position in the 9th inning of a one run game? Maybe you can justify the ejection on the grounds of “somebody has to pay after plunking 4 guys even if they were accidents”, but a suspension is completely unfair.

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