Entering tonight’s game, 25-year-old Daniel Wright had only pitched 14 innings above the AA level. He has now pitched 19.1 innings above the AA level. Wright’s first inning as a major leaguer didn’t start quite as planned. Solid hits by Chase Utley and Corey Seager were followed by a lucky bloop by Justin Turner, scoring Utley. Wright had given up a run before he recorded an out. He then struck out Adrian Gonzalez and induced Trayce Thompson and Joc Pederson into fly balls to end the inning.
Wright’s final line in his major league debut will go down as 4 R (3 ER) over 5.1 IP, giving up 7 hits while striking out 4 and walking 1. To me, he seemed a bit sharper than this.
Bryan Price shook up the lineup for the first time tonight, essentially dropping Billy Hamilton to 7th (?) and moving everyone else up a slot. At this point, I’m happy to see any signs that the wheels are turning.
Somebody named Mike Bolsinger started the game for the Dodgers. That isn’t Clayton Kershaw. (Didn’t matter)
Adam Duvall’s 4th inning 2-run homer snapped a skid where he’d struck out in 6 consecutive plate appearances. The home run also ended a 17-inning scoreless streak for the Redlegs. I guess that is good, right?
In the 4th inning, Tucker Barnhart threw the ball into left field on a Pederson stolen base attempt that put the Dodgers up 3-2. This was his 3rd throwing error this series. He is also hitting .240/.282/.346 on the season and has drawn only 1 walk in his last 19 games. For a guy hitting primarily in front of the pitcher, you expect a few more walks.
To jab at Tucker for not hitting isn’t really fair, though. No one on this team is hitting well at the moment.
Joey Votto joined the error party tonight in the 6th inning on a ground ball, allowing Yasiel Puig to score from 2nd. He was partially shielded by the base runner at first, but Joey will tell you he should have made that play. It was his first error of the season.
In the last 2 games, the Reds have committed 6 errors and amassed 5 base hits. You won’t win many baseball games with numbers like that.
The Reds have only scored in 1 of their last 23 innings played.
Career minor leaguer AJ Morris was bad in his major league debut, earning 3 runs in 0.2 IP. The last earned run was courtesy of Josh Smith. That is unfortunate for him.
VIN SCULLY QUOTES
“Joey Votto is from Toronto, Canada…at least that’s where he was born.”
“So for Hamilton to hit a fly ball is a complete waste of time.”
“Barnhart is 5-11, 190 lbs. (pause) He played some football. (pause) Offensive tackle.”
“That doesn’t look like Jumbo.” (In reference to Dayan Diaz)
TWEET OF THE GAME
After a hard come-backer to Daniel Wright…
ADVENTURES IN MANAGEMENT
In the top of the 6th inning, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts removed starter Mike Bolsinger at 85 pitches. To that point, Bolsinger had looked sharp. Roberts summoned lefty Luis Avilan to face Bruce, who grounded out to first. I don’t know if this is a “good” move or not, but it worked this time and it shows that Roberts was very serious about preserving the 3-2 lead. At least that’s how I interpreted the move.
SOMEWHAT RANDOM-ISH THOUGHTS
Watching Wright tonight made me realize there is a shot someone off-the-radar will be part of the rotation for the next Reds contender. It’s very likely that at least one or two of Robert Stephenson, Cody Reed, Nick Travieso, Amir Garrett, etc. will be busts. It’s also possible that someone like Wright might make a name for himself.
The defensive metrics have Jay Bruce as one of the worst defensive outfielders in baseball so far this year. It seems odd at first thought, but the play he made in the 6th that turned Trayce Thompson’s double into a ersatz triple was a good example of what I’ve been seeing with Bruce in right field and why he entered the game with -0.5 WAR despite a 116 wRC+.
Puig (who I generally like, for some reason) turned a double into a single in the 6th by standing at home plate to admire his “home run.” For a guy who has been hitting terribly of late, I’d like to see some hustle out of the box.
Votto’s throws this year seem a lot more crisp and accurate than the last few seasons. I no longer expect him to throw the ball away every time he winds up.
This team is just a mess right now. Last night was understandable, because Kershaw happens, but tonight was a disheartening game to watch.
Tomorrow’s game pits Dan Straily against Scott Kazmir. Enjoy this game, folks, as it is likely the last Reds game Vin Scully will ever call.