2017 Reds / Milton / Titanic Struggle Recap

Titanic Struggle Recap: Where did my Reds go?

Final R H E
Colorado Rockies (27-16) 12 16 1
Cincinnati Reds (19-22) 6 10 0
W: Anderson (3-4) L: Bonilla (0-2)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score

The Good
–I’m going to pretend that some things were good about this miserable game:

–Eugenio Suarez was 3-4 with a home run (his 8th of the season), a double, and two runs scored. Suarez is hitting .302/.373/.544. That’ll do, Geno. That’ll do.

–Billy Hamilton had two hits, including a triple (and he scored on a throwing error on that play; a Little League home run).

–Jose Peraza hit a two-run home run.

–Michael Lorenzen and Raisel Iglesias pitched scoreless innings. Because they’re good.

The Bad
–Let’s begin with Lisalverto Bonilla. I like Bonilla. No, really, I do. He has a great changeup, and I think he could be a legitimate 5th starter under certain circumstances.

Tonight, Bonilla gave up two runs in the first, almost as soon as the game began. The first four Colorado hitters reached base: double, HBP, single, single. After that, he settled down, tossed four scoreless innings, and the Suarez home run had cut the Rockies lead to 2-1. Reds are in the game, right?

Not so fast, my friend. In the top of the sixth, Colorado hammered Bonilla like he was a Little League pitcher. Single. Double. Home run. Single. Sac bunt…and Bonilla’s night was done. The final line: 5.1 innings pitched, six runs allowed on eight hits and three walks. A decent outing turned into a disastrous outing almost as quickly as you can say “Reds starters need to get healthy, pronto.

–I like Wandy Peralta. No, really, I do. He’s had a great season, and I’m not down on him because of his outing tonight. But, he relieved for Bonilla and…single, double, homer, single, K, wild pitch, walk, single, walk. Final line: four runs allowed on five hits and two walks in two-thirds of an inning. Bumped his formerly-great ERA up to 3.06. (Peralta’s ERA coming into the game was 1.06.)

When the dust settled on the eighth inning, the Rockies had scored 8 runs and the game was over.

–Austin Brice allowed two runs on two hits and a walk in the ninth inning. Not that it mattered at that point.

Not-So-Random Thoughts
–Seven losses in a row. This is not good, friends and neighbors.

–Last time the Reds lost 7 in a row? Last May, which was an awful month.

Tonight’s Tweets

Milton was unhappy with Cincinnati’s performance today.

49 thoughts on “Titanic Struggle Recap: Where did my Reds go?

    • This entire losing streak for the most part our hitting has been good. If we could just hold the opponent under six runs we would have a chance… that’s how bad the pitching has been.

      • Our bats died in SF and then the rest of the team deflated:

        Pitching started to labor, then the fielding which had been spectacular went into the dumpster. I mean when do you see Zach make an error? Then Duvall drop a fly ball. And Schebler. And Suarez. And then the bloops start finding holes.

        Then young pitchers go through young pitcher stuff like Amir questioning the ump and his strike zone.

        Time to make plays boys!

  1. The Reds have now given up at least 9 runs in 11 of the 41 games they have played. That is like forfeiting every 4th game. Hopefully the starters on the disabled list can make a difference in the second half of the season.

  2. Stephenson should be starting. Don’t tell me it is simply because he walks guys because over the last 10 appearances his walk rate is 4 per 9. Don’t tell me he only throws fastballs because he has 25 strikeouts in 21 innings and sometimes his offspeed stuff is filthy. Batters swing and miss at his stuff.
    4 walks per 9 innngs is reds average and I do believe less than Iglesias. Take away his horrible early outing and that is where he is.
    With FinnEgan, desclafini and Bailey this could be a pretty good team. I thought it was all about who would be here on next good team.
    This makes no sense to me
    .i love Bronson arroyo. However, he should be a long guy and a mentor. You want to highlight Feldman to flip…. fine. There is no reason for this.

    • Price made some off the wall statement prior to the Friday’s game in which he seemed to be saying that Adleman was the long man for Friday if they needed one and that if Adleman was used Friday, they’d have to figure out what to do on Saturday. I’m wondering if perhaps there is still some question about Adleman’s neck at least as to how long he can go which prompted this statement.

      Reed pitched 7 innings at AAA Wednesday or Thursday, so he wasn’t a possibility for Saturday which pretty much left only Stephenson as far as I could see. If Adleman does still have a physical issue, Stephenson could well be the spot starter Saturday.

      • Yet for some reason I like things to make sense. Not quite sure what your point is. Am I missing some salient point about the merits of my idea or opinion?

        • My point is that you, I and everyone else have a 5-10% understanding of what all the facts are surrounding any of the pitching moves that are made.

          The Reds are still experimenting, still tweaking and still willing the to lose some games now to hopefully win more later. Until things are ultimately settled and established it isn’t going to make sense to you….or anyone else that doesn’t know what the actual plan is before any given game.

      • I like wizemans point

        Who is making the decisions because right now they are really bad. When we were 4 games over, Price could do no wrong. Now we have lost 7 in a row and are playing the worst ball of the year and “we want some butts” to quote some obscure, coffee wearing flight command officer when Maverick made yet another poor decision with his fly by. We could all relate, we knew that Maverick had made a bad decision with our own eyes….

  3. Yet another game where the one or both of the arguably two best arms on the pitching staff, Lorenzen and Iglesias are pitching in a lost cause situation.

  4. Do you suppose Bonilla being struck on the hand by a pitch while batting in the bottom of the 5th could have been a contributing factor to his sudden meltdown in the 6th?

    • Yes, and I meant to mention that. On the other hand (no pun intended), most pitchers start to get easier to hit when they get through the lineup a couple times.

      • I remember thinking in real time that Bonilla’s pitch count was getting high during the top of the 5th and wondering if he would bat for himself in the bottom of the inning.

        Reconstructing from the MLB box score and play by play transcript, Bonilla’s pitch count through 5 innings was 92. Then he gets plunked on the hand at the plate in bottom of the inning. Add in that in the 6th, the Rockies had #5/6/7 leading off the inning.

        Maybe Bonilla should have been on batter by batter status to start the 6th? Certainly the leftie Peralta should have been ready for the LH hitter Amarista who hit the 3 run homer on (by my count) Bonilla’s 100th pitch of the game.

        • Good point, I have seen Arroyo/Adleman pulled with lower pitch counts after 5 when they have the lead, Price seems to makes much worse moves when he is losing…just an opinion

  5. I was at this game tonight, and Bonilla looked okay until he got hit on the hand. I leaned to a friend and said’ “he’s not gonna do so great next half-inning”. Also peralta didn’t seem sharp either, just an off night. Also weird night when Suarez hr barely clears and peraza spanks a ball. Still a good game nonetheless, even in a terrible loss.

  6. It is what it is with our starters right now.You could see this coming a mile away with the guys we are running out there.It will not get any better until some return from injury or they try other pitchers.We have scored runs the last 4 games but lets not get so carried away with the offense.In those games we were way way behind and didn’t score until the late innings against mop up guys for the other teams.I didn’t see the Peraza homer but its about time he showed his power.Kid needs to come out of his shoes and quit that flat footed opposite field approach. It will get better after the break just like last year.

    • Our run totals, (in the games we are blown out early), are a bit misleading because, based on the score, the opposing pitchers are throwing strikes to every batter shortening the game.

      • Good point.

        With the Reds right now, there seems to be, like in hockey, a “score effects” where the other team gets a big lead, rests its top lines, plays defensively and allows more shots to secure the win, distorting the final score

        They have played fewer 1-run games (3-4) than anyone else.

        Watching other MLB games, there is a back-and-forth flow to the contest. For whatever reason, the Reds fall behind early and it feels like there is little chance they are coming back.

        • Without running any actual numbers, I’ll take a flyer and say that when the Reds have fallen behind early by 3 or more runs, it seems to me like the early guys out of the pen have been unable to hold the line.

          Part of this is attributable to the defense seeming to have fallen into a slump during this losing streak. Friday night, there was another play in the 1st inning that could have, probably should have, been made which likely would have gotten them out of the inning with 1 or zero runs scored against them. These plays get lost in shuffle when later on the game gets totally out of control.

  7. There’s no question in my mind that Bonilla’s 6th inning was caused in part by getting hit on the pitching hand in the bottom of the 5th. He was a totally different pitcher after that. Why let him go back out? He’d already thrown more than 90 pitches and was probably hurting. I remarked at the time that Price probably asked him if he was okay and he probably lied and said yes. IMHO the game was lost in that poor decision. Otherwise, frankly I would put Bonilla’s start in the “good” column. He was off early, found a groove and pitched shutout ball the next four innings against a pretty solid lineup and kept it close. Too bad it was all wasted in the end. The hardest part of being a Reds fan right now is that there is no one in the rotation we can look ahead to and say “Reed (or Garrett or Romano or Stephenson or Mahle or Disco or Bailey or Finnegan) starts tomorrow, should be a win for the Reds”. How are so many good pitchers hurt or struggling? It’s a tough time to be optimistic right now. I’m trying. Go Reds.

      • Price’s failures and bad ideas as a Field manager are once again manifest. I have no idea what the decision making process is with the organization, but this is largely……..ridiculous. The rotation is made up of #5 starters, and is not going to get better. They looked okay for about 2 weeks, playing weak teams. They will lose all three to the Rockies and lose all the games to the Indians next week. Who knows when the Reds will win another game again? When do they play Atlanta, the Pirates, or the Padres?

        • More Front Office dithering. Why isn’t Mesoraco on the DL and at least some warm body that can play on the bench?

          • If I had to make a guess on Mesoraco, it would be that they want to use him as DH in Cleveland next week. That would give him likely at least 8 “free” plate appearances without the need for him to be catching. I don’t think the math quite worked out to backdate him onto the 10 day DL and still have him available in Cleveland. It is certainly water past the bridge now since he pinch hit on Friday night.

          • Because tomorrow he’s going to start and get a couple of hits, one of which will be a home run.

        • I beg to differ sir. #6 or#7 starters. Do you see any other team that would take Arroyo right now as their #5 starter? I dont.

  8. This team fell apart after the Reds showed that they were more interested in future player control than trying to win. Note Cozart’s comment. The Reds management has a liser’s mentality at present. A team always has to do everything to win. Otherwise, you develop a culture that winning is not important. That is a culture of losing

  9. The loss last night, or at least or the Reds being in the game is on Price. There should have been someone warming up in the pen as soon as Bonilla was hit on the wrist, It is not like it was his non pitching hand. At least he could have used the injury card to give a reliever as much time as he needed to get ready. I knew game was over before Bonilla through a pitch in the fifth. DUMB NON-MOVE.

  10. Good morning Redleg Nation bloggers. Being a Reds fan since 1960, YES 1960, I am not in the generation that blogs about everything. However, I am compelled to comment on the events of last night’s game between the Reds and the Rockies. Having read the blogs posted so far regarding the game I offer the following: Time to stop tip-toeing around the basic problem with the current edition of the Reds, poor managerial decisions on a regular basis! Yes, I’m saying it, Mr. Price is NOT a good manager. Having followed MLB for over 50 years NO manager would send his rookie SP back to the mound after being HBP in the previous inning and having thrown 90+ pitches. The game score going into the 6th inning was only 2-1 in favor of the Rockies. Still a winnable game at that point. So, Mr. Price sends L. Bonilla out knowing all that AND leaves him in to get pummeled.
    Then, to add insult to injury, he uses Lorenzen and Iglesias an inning each in a blowout game! Why? I understand the injury situation with the Reds SP but that does not excuse the current manager from making sound decisions with the available roster. I am a lifelong Reds fan and will continue to follow the team and root for them. But my patience with this manager has reached its end.

    • I think it is equal parts GM and field manager. Price is not a major league manager. Period. The Reds front office is sending the signal to the players that winning is not important by decisions like the one with Garrett. Things like that will mess with a player’s mind and destroy his confidence. Way to go Reds.

        • The Cubs did not demote Bryant after he succeeded wildly. You can argue collective bargaining and service time delays until late April. Its a much harder argument to make to demote Garrett after he succeeds wildly, while he’s the best starting pitcher, amd you run out pathetic arm after pathetic arm while he is in Louisville. The Reds starting pitching in 2017 is quickly becoming the laughable counter-foil to the 2016 bullpen.
          Yes, injuries are contributing….but they contributed to 2016 bullpen folly as well. Collectively, the Reds coaches and FO have very badly mishandled the starting pitching.

    • The fact that you’ve been a fan since 1960 doesn’t give you any additional insight as to why a given decision is made. Bonilla is a warm body who miraculously hasn’t sucked in his 2 outings. They needed innings from him more than they needed a win as they don’t actually care if they win 74 games vs 78 games this year. You’re indicating that you somehow know more than Price and you have perhaps a 5% understanding of what the plan is for any given game. There are lots of things they’re focusing on besides winning a given game

      • Don’t seriously disagree with much of your analysis of Reds situation and possible/ potential motives. However when a team has lost 6 in a row, there are lots of reasons to feel more imperative to win an individual game that it trails 2-1 after 5 innings.

        Here are some reasons why the team might want to grab the chance to win an individual game to stop the bleeding before 6 becomes 12 becomes….. which is very possible given the sorry state of their starting pitching. There are still a lot of tickets and concessions to be sold (or not). Williams has made statements about bringing in talent from outside for 2018. That’s likely more easily done if they do win in the mid 70’s or more of games versus 65-70. The trade value of players would like be enhanced if the team looked better. Bryan Price is presumably trying convince the front office to roll over his option for 2018.

      • Bonilla may be a warm body but there is no logic to pitching him in the top of the 6th inning, especially if he was even remotely injured. Plus, Lorenzen and Iglesias were both available to pitch more than one inning each had the prudent decision been made by the current manager. Running a MLB franchise is a business and few, if any, businesses would hire a manager with no prior experience for the job at hand.

        • There was no obvious logic or reason to have him pitch the 6th. Was it a stupid, awful, unilateral decision by Price? Maybe.

          Were there other factors, objectives, influences, pre-set determinations that we’re not aware of? Maybe. Lame duck managers, in year 3 of a rebuild, who report to the co- owners son don’t have a lot of say.

          There is absolutely nothing empirical that suggest that managerial experience has any impact on anything. If they mattered they wouldn’t be as easily replaceable as they are Sparky Anderson won 102 as a rookie…lost 103 in year 20. Dusty Baker won 103 in year 1. Managers really don’t matter.

          • Chuck,
            Everything I have observed over 57 years of watching sports is that managers do indeed matter. Certainly there are other factors but managers matter.

        • Of course winning is the goal, but teams ebb and flow. Players get older, get injured, become free agents. A run of a few good years is often followed by a substantial need to rebuild–from within and through acquisition of new players through free-agency and trades, depending upon a team’s financial resources and the availability of needed talent. During rebuilding, assembly of the players who will fuel the next competitive run has to take precedence over any other consideration. Of course the players want to win every game–athletes are competitive–but being good for more than one game , one series or even one season requires long-term thinking. So, yes, winning is the goal, but maybe not so much this year.

    • Price made the statement before the game began that he was going to live or die with bonilla.That his bullpen was exhausted and even if Bonilla was getting rocked he would stay on the mound.An idiotic statement for sure.Then he goes and uses 4 of his bullpen arms anyways while down by 5-6 runs.He’s not a major league manager, anyway you look at it.

      On another subject,why, Chuck, do you berate almost every bloggers posts?I find it nauseating when you post some “knowitall”reply to peoples opinions.You offend me almost every post I make.You are by no means any more knowledgeable than anyone else on this board.

  11. I record the games then look at the final score later. No reason to waste three hours watching these guys now.

  12. The only pitcher I like seeing is Amir. I think Stephenson needs two or three starts in Louisville A couple of starts for reed and both should be in the reds rotation

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