Titanic Struggle Recap

Choose your own adventure.

Something happened. Either the Good Guys won or they didn’t.  I didn’t stay up to see it.  I’ve got a 1-year old that gets up very early.  Everything below was written before the conclusion of the game.

I was fortunate enough to see Johnny Cueto’s final start as a member of the Cincinnati Reds when he took the mound at Coors Field in 2015.  I don’t think it will ever get easier seeing him sport something other than the Wishbone C.

Cueto was very good tonight, giving up 2 runs in 8 innings.  We all figured he’d eventually stop scuffling against the Reds.

WIN PROBABILITY GRAPH | BOX SCORE

THE GOOD

-In the 1st inning, Zack Cozart drew a walk that required him to lay off a few very close pitches. He did the same thing in the 8th inning.  By my estimation, the ability for Zack to draw a walk at a decent rate was really all that was missing over the last several years from Zack’s game.  I don’t know what the right answer is for Zack regarding contracts and trades and what-have-you, but he’s certainly made himself into quite a good ballplayer.  Cozart was 0-4 with two walks in the game.

-Defensive metrics, especially early ones, are fraught with noise.  Joey Votto, however, cares not!  Entering the game, he was the 2nd-best defensive first baseman behind Brandon Belt.  In the bottom of the 1st, Votto made a fantastic play on a ground ball requiring him to go to the ground and spin a bit.  In the past, it doesn’t seem like a play he’d make.  He also cut down Denard Span in the 5th after he cut off a throw home, and he made a few good picks. If Votto has gotten back to being at least average defensively, he’s got a few more 6+ WAR seasons in him.  Votto was 1-6 at the plate.

-Scott Feldman was, again, pretty good against the Giants.  He tossed 7 innings giving up only 2 runs.  He struck out 2 and walked only 1 batter.  His first earned run was via lead-off home run courtesy of Span.  The earned run came after back-to-back-to-back bunts from Eduardo Nunez, Justin Ruggiano, and Cueto.  A single from Span brought in Nunez.  He now owns a 3.59/4.09/4.16 ERA/FIP/xFIP slash.  That’s about as good as you can hope for from Scott Feldman. Kudos to him.

-Scott Schebler was 2-4 with a walk.  That’s a decent night off Cueto and Co. With average-ish base running and defense and a 120 wRC+, Schebler’s been a pretty OK player.

-Wandy Peralta struck out Babe Denard Span.  That is an accomplishment over the last 2 games.

THE BAD

-Votto’s base running hasn’t been good this year.  Coming into this game, he’d been the 16th-worst base runner in MLB.  He hasn’t taken many extra bases all year and tonight he was doubled off 1st in the 1st inning on a soft liner.  It wasn’t a good look for the former MVP.

-Eugenio Suarez was 0-5, and is on a 2-21 with 1 BB and 10 K.

-Adam Duvall was 0-4 with a walk, and is on a 3-17 with 1 BB and 5 K.

THE UGLY

-In the 5th inning, Buster Posey missed a fastball from Cueto due to being somewhat shielded by Billy Hamilton’s bunting bat.  The ball hit umpire Tony Randazzo right in the neck extension on his face mask.  Randazzo fell to the ground in heap and my stomach instantly was in a knot.  It was a scary moment.  Thankfully, he was OK.  I guess the ‘ol bell just got rung.

-MLB.tv was about 2 minutes behind live tonight.  I find it hard to believe technology hasn’t progressed to the point where this issue can’t be fixed.

-Tucker Barnhart laying down a successful sac bunt in the 10th lowered the odds that the Reds would score from 44% to 42%.  Given that success isn’t guaranteed, and a failure would have dropped the odds to 28%, calling for a bunt in that situations is not good.  There is one fringe case when a bunt is good.  This was not that case.

-Extra innings on the west coast are not that fun.

QUOTE OF THE NIGHT

jimtweet

Jim was right.

SOMEWHAT RANDOM-ISH THOUGHTS

-Louisville Bats “manager” Delino DeShields batted Jesse Winker in the 6-hole tonight in Louisville.  Ahead of Winker in the lineup were Hernan Irribarren, Zach Vincej, and someone I’ve never heard of named Zach Walters.  All three of these players got to bat 5 times.  Winker batted 4 times.  DeShields routinely bats Winker 5th, 6th, and 7th.  By my napkin math, in a little over a year under DeShields, Winker has been robbed of some 30 plate appearances by not being 2nd or 3rd in the order.  If he gets to Cincinnati and you think “he could use some more work at AAA,” it’s not his fault.  It is his short-sighted manager’s fault.

-Between last night and tonight, Scooter Gennett tripled in back-to-back at-bats.  That has to be pretty rare.

A GRAPH WITHOUT COMMENT

re24

No comment.

14 thoughts on “Choose your own adventure.

  1. Game should be over, and Reds should have won, already. Peraza has to get that runner from 3rd in, with less than two outs. Should have a sac fly, or done something to get that run in. He is got to start hitting better!

  2. Bottom of the 16th, Suarez loses a foul pop up (in the seagulls ?) but Stephenson bails him out by striking out Belt looking.
    Top of the 17th, Stephenson bloops a single off Span’s glove and Suarez gets hit by a pitch while trying to swing but Schebler grounds out weakly.
    Bottom of the 17th, Buster Posey ends it.

  3. Shut out for 9 innings by a mediocre Giants bullpen. And looked ugly doing it. Cozart and Suarez looked like their former selves, swinging at everything. Peraza looks lost.

    Reds bullpen was outstanding until Stephenson grooved one to Posey.

  4. I’m in the same boat as you with the early-rising 1-year-old. I elected to see it through to the end and I’m paying for it today. And somehow the 1-year-old is the one that gets to take a nap.

    This one definitely left me with a deflated feeling. The Reds had done good opportunities in extra frames and shot themselves in the foot a few times. Hopefully this isn’t the type of loss that drains the club (physically and mentally) and leads to a big losing skid.

  5. The first guy Stephenson faced (Span?) blasted one to the wall in dead center that would’ve been gone in 20+ parks! Stephenson has a great arm but its always walks & blasts with him? I guess if you’re wild with walks then you’ll be wild right down the middle too! Suarez is pulling off the ball as well. Baseball isn’t easy!

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