Another day, another preview introduction about how poorly the Reds (41-61) are playing. The team dropped its fourth straight game on Thursday to open the weekend series with the Marlins (47-53), dropping them to 2-12 since the all-star break. If there’s any silver lining to the recent performance, it’s that Cincinnati is now in position to grab another high draft pick and continue bolstering the farm system. They’re currently in line for the No. 4 overall pick and are four games in front (behind?) of the Phillies for the top selection.

The Reds’ goal isn’t getting the top pick in the draft, though, so they’ll look to snap out of their funk tonight at 7:10 p.m.

Starting Pitchers

Sal Romano 18.0 5.50 5.04 22.0% 13.4%
Vance Worley 29.2 6.37 4.32 24.2% 15.2%

After his most recent performance, Sal Romano must have a little extra confidence coming into tonight’s contest. Following his worst outing as a big leaguer, he turned in his best, as he threw more than five innings for the first time and held the Marlins to one run on only three hits in six strong frames last weekend. Minus a solo home run, he generally had his way with Miami hitters, striking out seven and walking only one. That last stat is the most important for Romano; when he’s been off his game, the right-hander has battled control problems, walking nine in seven innings. In his two victories, he has only two walks combined. The rookie hasn’t dealt with wildness in his minor-league career, so it’s certainly not something to get worked up about. When his command has been erratic, Romano has chalked it up to overthrowing.

Here’s how current Marlins did against him last week:

(Stats courtesy of Baseball Reference)

After the Reds roughed up Tom Koehler in his last start, the Marlins sent him to the minors and promoted veteran right-hander Vance Worley from the bullpen to start tonight’s game. The 29-year-old at one point looked like a promising young arm for the Phillies, posting a 2.4 fWAR in 2011, his rookie season. Since then, however, he has dealt with injuries and ineffectiveness.

He was almost exclusively a starter at the beginning of his career with the Phillies, Twins, and Pirates, but he’s served in a relief role for much of the past three seasons. He’s made four starts this season, posting a 7.11 ERA and making it to the fifth inning only once. Worley hasn’t been stretched out to throw six or seven innings, so the Reds will have a chance to get to the Marlins’ bullpen early tonight.

Here is how Reds hitters have fared against him in the past:




CF Billy Hamilton (63 wRC+) 2B Dee Gordon (86 wRC+)
2B Scooter Gennett (138 wRC+) RF Giancarlo Stanton (143 wRC+)
1B Joey Votto (153 wRC+) CF Christian Yelich (112 wRC+)
LF Adam Duvall (112 wRC+) LF Marcell Ozuna (138 wRC+)
3B Eugenio Suárez (113 wRC+) C J.T. Realmuto (121 wRC+)
RF Scott Schebler (98 wRC+) 3B Derek Dietrich (80 wRC+)
SS José Peraza (52 wRC+) 1B Tyler Moore (81 wRC+)
C Tucker Barnhart (75 wRC+) SS Miguel Rojas (95 wRC+)
P Sal Romano (5.04 xFIP) P Vance Worley (4.32 xFIP)

— For the fourth straight game, Zack Cozart is out of the Reds lineup with a quad injury. Jose Peraza is again starting at shortstop.

News, Notes and Pre-Game Reading

Final Thoughts

While the pitching has continued to struggle in the second half, the disappearance of the offense has been most notable for the Reds. The team has scored only 41 runs in 14 games since the break, averaging just under three per game. That kind of output won’t win very many games. Minus Eugenio Suarez, nearly every starter has been mired in a slump, though Joey Votto showed some signs of getting out of his in the last two games (3-for-4, four walks). If the club is going to get back on track, the bats will have to lead the way.

Growing up just north of Cincinnati, Matt has been a Reds fan for as long as he can remember. As a kid, he was often found leading the Reds to 162-0 seasons in MVP Baseball 2005 and imitating his favorite players (Ken Griffey Jr., Adam Dunn, Sean Casey, and Austin Kearns) in the backyard. One of his earliest baseball memories is attending the final night game at Cinergy Field. Matt is also a graduate of The Ohio State University and currently lives in the Dayton area. Follow him on Twitter at @_MattWilkes.

Join the conversation! 56 Comments

  1. Votto’s line the 2nd half is ridiculously strange looking. .186/.407/.186


    • i can’t believe he doesn’t even have one extra base hit

      • He’s fatigued. He has had no days off this season that I can recall.
        Votto is 33, and does need some days off. Price has played him down to the place that his fatigue is slowing his bat down.

  2. I guess I hate money but I took the Reds tonite! Even the worst of teams win occasionally!

  3. The marlins announcers have a point about Billy’s sliding mitt being three inches longer than his fingers

    • All of those “sliding mitts” are longer than the players’ fingers. You have to wonder where/when they draw the line with them.

  4. Well if Joey and Adam wake up then we can’t get a top 3 pick again, but I’m tired of losing, so I know they are too!

  5. I see Votto tied Frank McCormick for career RBIs with 800. Just curious. I am old enough to remember when Frank McCormick was the color guy with Ed Kennedy (is that right?) doing play by play for the Reds on our black and white 26-inch Zenith TV. Anybody else??

  6. Hard not to be encouraged by Suarez this year. He’s up to a 12.1 BB%. Great to see.

    • Really good players don’t hit .190 for an entire month (June) but you’re right about his obp! Personally, I think his #s would look great for a shortstop but only slightly better then average for 3B. Senzel needs to play 3B!

      • Suarez is a good defensive 3rd baseman, but only a good offensive shortstop.

        • We’re 10th in offense in the NL. We need more runs! He wasn’t a good shortstop but he wasn’t that good at 3B either til this year!

          • Agreed … he really has started to excel at 3B and I don’t see how a change for him would be good for the Reds. Not sure we’ll get significant increased production. Pretty sure defense will go down. But that’s the “Senzel Dilemma” isn’t it?

      • Joey Votto hit .200 last May….is he not really good? Or is .200 your cutoff?

  7. Indy,

    I am rooting for you.

    He struggled in key situations last night, but I made sure to have Duvall in my starting lineup in my keeper team tonight.

    I remember this Worley guy from the Pirates. He stinks.

    (I wondered what the other teams’ fans think when they see some of the names the Reds have had taking the mound this season. Now I know.)

    Here’s hoping for a laugher, with the Reds putting up 8 or 9. Much needed.

    • Worley was pretty good 2-3 years ago but he’s faded fast….sort of like Matt Latos.

  8. B2B BB’s … that is a bery, bery bad thing!!

  9. THROW THE #&&@^% BALL OVER THE #&*$&$&^#^# PLATE!!

  10. K BB BB BB K K….little league line….lol

  11. 28 pitches, 3K’s, 3BB’s and 0 runs. Don’t get me wrong … I’ll take it. But Young Sal needs to follow Tucker’s lead and throw, not try to over-throw tonight.

  12. Rookie Davis going for the Bats tonite vs Buffalo. Winker is leading off and 2-2 with a double (.313). At some point Schebler needs to start hitting again? Why not give Jesse a little run in RF?

    Buffalo has 2B Rob Refsnyder batting 3rd tonite. He’s hitting .318 and lifetime (.380 obp/811 ops) in the minors. I read an article about him 2-3 years ago and sort of followed him. He’s 26. The Reds could pick him up and platoon w/Scooter. If Senzel isn’t ready in April then Scooter could play some 3B with Refsnyder at 2B. He walks alot and is the kind of guy the Reds need in their organization.

    • FWIW, I was listening to MLB Radio driving home from work and a frequent caller, diehard Yankees fan, said New York needs to trade some of their AAA guys away, like Refsnyder. The organization, according to him, is fairly committed to Castro and Gregorius.

      Poor Yankees….have so much prospect talent, some of it has to be traded away, since it can’t break through to the ML team. If only they could afford a free agent, like a Machado or a Harper, they might be able to build a contender.

  13. Wow, Sal just had an inning where he threw fewer than 10 pitches!

    More of that, please!

  14. 111 mph out for Schebler. Good to see him square the ball up. Just bad luck.

  15. Siri 33 in a row
    Senzel triples
    Winker 2-2 dbl.

  16. Is it me or has peraza hit the ball hard in three of his last four plate appearances? Not a huge deal…….but hopefully it’s a start.

    • He and Billy both look like they’ve been eating their Wheaties. I noticed both seem to be hitting with more authority.

  17. Well that was an unforced error

    • 2 gift runs so far….ridiculous how often they screw up the easiest plays?

  18. What a season! An easy double play and out of the inning. Instead….

  19. Big picture….I really like Romano! His stuff looks a little better each time out! I think they’ve only hit 2 flyballs tonite and 1 gapper double. His fastball has movement and he’s still really young! I compared him to Aaron Harang but AH was a flyball pitcher and doomed to give up a million HRs at gabp. Romano could be better then him!

    • Harang was a great pitcher. Vastly underrated. Did you know he led the NL in strikeouts in 2006 and nearly did again the next season, where he also finished 4th in the Cy Young voting? If Sal could be the 2nd coming of Harang, I’d be elated.

  20. Good night all … just can’t watch a trainwreck like this is fixin’ to be. So much hope early …

  21. ARGH! Why is Price taking him out??? Let him get out of the jam!

    • Because he’s walking everyone. Just can’t allow that to happen and have everyone think it’s okay.

      • He was also striking people out, unlike Stephenson last night. I thought Romano was doing alright and was struggling through an inning, but I think he deserved a chance to get out of his mess and possibly go one more inning.

  22. Next years rotation….Castillo, Disco, Lorenzen, Romano, and Homer. Thats not bad in theory! If they find a righty to replace Lorenzen in the setup role then things might turn around eventually?

    • Finnegan
      Reed (?)
      (Who else am I missing?)

      With those names, give the rotation Indy listed, it is easy to see why the Reds would keep Lorenzen in the bullpen.

      Lorenzen is not making or breaking this rebuild, wherever he pitches.

      The question is….are the Reds ready to commit to Romano, Castillo, etc, starting in 2018 and let them take their lumps, work out of jams (or not), etc.

      Pulling Romano after 3.2 innings is getting his feet wet. It is not the molding/grafting/developing/pitch every 5 days that the DBacks did last year with Patrick Corbin, like the Rockies are this year with their young guys, etc.

      • And, actually, I am a #FreeLorenzen.

        But, I can see why the Reds would keep him parked in the pen until all the other arms are (pardon the pun)…..sorted.

      • Well for one Lorenzen is a groundball pitcher. We just give up wayyyyy too many HRs. Plus he can hit and he’s a great athlete. I want to see the Reds use him as much as possible. Mahle looks really good. Personally, they’ll never do it because he’s making $20mil/year but I would consider making Bailey the closer….similar to Bud Norris or John Smoltz (in a perfect world). That would free them up to make Iglesias the roaming fireman like Andrew Miller.

  23. Reds are hopeless vs lefties….its pathetic. I give up….they’re not scoring again and something will happen to blow the game. Price will put Wood or Cingrani in at some point…he can’t help himself.

  24. Lorenzen….turning into a guy with a million $ arm and 10 cent head??????

    Why hang a breaking ball to a 43 yr old when you throw 99???? He did that the other day vs Didi in NY. Same thing….beating him w/99 and gives him a cookie!

    • Welp. Even the bullpen has collapsed.

      Tell me, how is this team supposed to be competing next season?

  25. This team is a disaster right now

    • It is tough to watch, unfortunately. We were hitting well above our weight earlier this season, which masked a lot of problems and was fun to watch. But this inevitable reversion to the mean has been brutal. At some point we’ll reach equilibrium and win at our projected .400 pace….

  26. Didn’t miss any of that one

  27. Just tuned in to see we are at again.Romano looks like was pulled early because I guess he was walking a bunch.No runs after the first against Vance Worley and some other pitchers.This is the same Vance Worley that has pitched for and been released by several teams.Looks like we have struck out 11 times and counting and we had a pen melt down.Good recipe for getting beat.

Comments are closed.

About Matt Wilkes

Growing up just north of Cincinnati, Matt has been a Reds fan for as long as he can remember. As a kid, he was often found leading the Reds to 162-0 seasons in MVP Baseball 2005 and imitating his favorite players (Ken Griffey Jr., Adam Dunn, Sean Casey, and Austin Kearns) in the backyard. One of his earliest baseball memories is attending the final night game at Cinergy Field. Matt is also a graduate of The Ohio State University and currently lives in the Dayton area. Follow him on Twitter at @_MattWilkes.


2017 Reds, Game Thread


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