2017 Reds / Game Thread

Reds vs. Blue Jays — May 29, 2017

The Cincinnati Reds (24-25) go north of the border for a three game series against the Toronto Blue Jays (23-27), starting tonight at 7:07 ET. These two teams have not played each other since 2014, and the Reds have not visited Toronto since 2009.

The Blue Jays come into this series in last place in the AL East, 7.5 games behind the New York Yankees. It’s been a rough first two months of the season for Toronto, which has had a revolving door of injured players. Josh Donaldson, Troy Tulowitzki, Dalton Pompey, J.A. Happ, Russell Martin, Francisco Liriano, first baseman Steve Pearce and pitcher Aaron Sanchez have all spent time on the disabled list. Things are looking up for the Blue Jays though, as they are 6-4 in their last 10 and got back Donaldson and Tulowitzki over the weekend.

Starting Pitchers

Pitcher IP ERA xFIP K% BB%
Lisalverto Bonilla 23.1 6.17 5.14 15.5% 10.7%
Marcus Stroman 62.2 3.30 3.43 19.7% 7.3%

Aside from the game in San Francisco when he went eight innings, Bonilla can’t seem to make it past the fifth inning. The problem stems from walking too many batters. In 23.1 innings, he’s walked 11. Combine the walks he’s allowed with the number of runs he’s given up (16), and it leads to more pitches thrown. If he can somehow find a way to be more pitch efficient and limit the number of home runs he surrenders, he could have a decent start.

Stroman is one of two starting pitchers for the Blue Jays who have been mainstays in the Toronto rotation. In 62.2 innings, Stroman is 5-2 and has given up 23 earned runs, including six home runs, while striking out 51 batters and walking 19. Only Eugenio Suarez and Arismendy Alcantara have faced Stroman, and are a combined 0-for-5 against him.

Stroman’s K% is about the same as in previous years, but his BB% is up slightly from last year. He’s giving up more walks and hits, but also getting out of trouble more often, as his 80.4 LOB% is way up from last year. Stroman is very much a ground ball pitcher, as 61.0% of the balls in play off him are ground balls. He’s induced 14 double plays, far and away more than his teammates.

Joey Votto Returns Home

Votto no doubt will have a section of family and friends in the seats at the Rogers Centre this week. Votto has only played in Toronto once, in 2009. He batted .417/.462/.750, with an OPS of 1.212 in 13 plate appearances, and five hits, including a double and a home run, three RBI and two runs scored. Four of his five hits came on getaway day of that series, when he went 4-for-5, and the Reds lit up Brett Cecil for five runs in three innings.

With Votto coming off a poor series in Philadelphia where he batted 1-for-11 with three strikeouts, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him have a great series in his hometown.

Lineups

You can find the lineups here.

News and Notes

Final Thoughts

On Memorial Day last year, the Reds were 16-34, had lost nine of their last 10 and were seven games behind the fourth place Milwaukee Brewers. Contrast that with this year where the Reds are 24-25 and sit 2.5 games behind the Brewers, another team playing surprisingly well.

It’s rather impressive the Reds are doing this with the starting rotation being what it currently is. It will be interesting to see how the team plays when the regular starting pitchers return. And if you’re not having fun watching this offense right now, then I really don’t know what to tell you.

112 thoughts on “Reds vs. Blue Jays — May 29, 2017

  1. I was wrong on Stephenson >Bonilla. Batting practice > Stephenson. I’ve never seen a Reds pitcher get hit as hard as he gets hit! The exit velocities could prob prove me right. He needs to go back down and work on his slider/off speed. We’ve got better then Bonilla and Arroyo even if its not Stephenson or Reed. Thats whats unacceptable

  2. Robert Stephenson ERA 7.77…. but let’s make him a starter. How about No? I think his time up on the big league roster is coming to an end for this year. Maybe they will stretch him back out as a starter for lowly Louisville and see what he can do there. If he goes back to Louisville until September we gain a year of service time? (not that I am wanting it at this point but…)

  3. Stephenson makes me long for Bonilla. I guess Bonilla didn’t pitch that bad. Lol

  4. I don’t care what anyone has been saying about Robert Stephenson, past, present or future (if there actually is one) he might have been a decent minor league pitcher but he totally sucks as a major league pitcher. Can’t believe this guy was rated our #1 prospect for so many years. We sure got hook winked with him. I would trade him in a minyte if any body else would want him.

  5. Don’t pull him man. This carnage is entertaining. Watching an ego implode before ones eyes is a glorious thing to behold. Bob Steve will be the bat boy after this game.

  6. Stephenson threw 55 pitches of suck today.

    On the bright side: Buchanan doesn’t have to do much to be an improvement tonight

    • I am wondering if he is already on the next bus to Louisville. I don’t think he will be on the 25 man for long. The Reds will have another pitching need for this week. Cingrani isn’t ready yet but maybe he can just warm up with the big league team. Results won’t be this bad.

  7. The new guy got us out of that one. Might as well let him have the rest of the game, good or bad.

  8. Time to send all those guys with an era over 5 down or release them and bring up some new blood to evaluate. I mean really enough is enough. They can’t be any worst that those guys. Bonilla is better than some of our other arms in AA & AAA? Really.

  9. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a team go from the worst bullpen to the worst starters in consecutive seasons. And when I say worst it’s not even close.

  10. How about we send Stephensen down right after the game.I mean he got his one chance like Reed did and he blew it.Matter of fact we should do that every time a starter gets hammered on this team but of course we already missed that opportunity on the other guys but we will get them the next time out.Who starts tomorrow?My sarcasm is that one game doesn’t define anybody and it really doesn’t matter if he put up zeroes or got hammered like he did.He got taught a lesson tonight and lets see if he really learned anything.Maybe he didn’t and maybe he never will but its only one appearance.

    • Stephenson has had plenty of chances. He has been bad in the minors and awful in the majors. The only reason is he is pitching is because he got millions of $ as a #1 draft pick. He has not earned his opportunity. He does not merit being on an MLB roster. He is a bust.

  11. Is it too late to change from a TD and a field goal to 2TD’S?I mean you could see this coming before we left Philly

  12. Now who is our starter tomorrow?Does anybody expect it to be any different?

  13. Stephensen has 8 starts in the majors which came last year and 12 relief appearances this year.Reed has appeared in 17 big league games with 11 starts.Neither of these guys have been given plenty of chances they just haven’t been successful so far.In this year of sorting(term used plenty on this site) they should be in the rotation.I doubt anybody would say they don’t have what it takes or are a bust based on such a small sample size.We need to find out as we did with Disco in 2015 and Finny in 2016 if they can start in the big leagues.Both started 31 games.

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