The Reds (41-63) are going to win another game eventually, right? With continued poor starting pitching and little offensive firepower, the team has seldom even been competitive during this ugly 2-14 stretch in the second half, with a run differential of minus-61 in 16 games.

With a captivating pitching matchup on tap, they’ll look to turn things around and avoid a four-game sweep against the Marlins (49-53) this afternoon at 1:10 p.m.

Starting Pitchers

Luis Castillo 40.0 4.05 3.70 26.8% 10.1%
Dan Straily 117.1 3.84 4.65 22.2% 6.8%

Although he has only seven career starts and never pitched in Triple-A, Luis Castillo might be the Reds’ most reliable starter right now. The 24-year-old continues to impress with his three-pitch arsenal, owning the highest fastball velocity among starting pitchers (97.6 mph) and a devastating change-up. His slider is still a work in progress, but he’s making strides with the pitch. Although he’s walking a few too many batters at times, his strikeout numbers are impressive, as is his poise on the mound. He’s coming off an outing in which he didn’t have his best stuff, though he did a nice job battling against the Yankees on Tuesday, keeping them to three runs in five innings.

Castillo vs. Marlins

This will be Castillo’s first appearance against his former organization.

Despite more trade rumors swirling around him, Dan Straily is still set to pitch against the Reds for the first time since he was traded in January. Last night, Jon Morosi of Fox Sports tweeted the Marlins and Brewers were discussing a trade for the right-hander, but that has apparently not materialized yet. In a year where the league-average ERA for starting pitchers is 4.49, the Fish are reportedly putting an “enormous” price tag on Straily. And why not? He’s under team control through 2021, as well.

After being claimed on waivers before the 2016 season, Straily was the Reds’ most dependable starter. He’s been that for the Marlins this year, too. The 28-year-old leads the team with 117.1 innings pitched and a 1.5 fWAR — already more than the 1.2 he had with the Reds last season. He has also increased his strikeout rate to a career high 22.2 percent while reducing his walk rate to a career low 6.8 percent. Straily is coming off a pair of shaky starts, though, as he’s allowed 10 runs on 19 hits and four walks over his last nine innings. Fortunately for him, his old friends aren’t hitting the ball very well right now.

Straily vs. Reds

This will also be Straily’s first appearance against his former team, but he has faced a few of his ex-teammates before.




CF Billy Hamilton (64 wRC+) 2B Dee Gordon (86 wRC+)
2B Scooter Gennett (135 wRC+) C A.J. Ellis (71 wRC+)
1B Joey Votto (156 wRC+) CF Christian Yelich (112 wRC+)
LF Adam Duvall (116 wRC+) LF Marcell Ozuna (139 wRC+)
3B Eugenio Suárez (110 wRC+) 3B Derek Dietrich (84 wRC+)
RF Scott Schebler (99 wRC+) 1B Tyler Moore (87 wRC+)
SS José Peraza (53 wRC+) RF Ichiro Suzuki (68 wRC+)
C Tucker Barnhart (74 wRC+) SS Miguel Rojas (93 wRC+)
P Luis Castillo (3.70 xFIP) P Dan Straily (4.65 xFIP)

— As expected, Devin Mesoraco is out of today’s lineup. He left last night’s game after “tweaking” his knee, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer’s Zach Buchanan.

— Giancarlo Stanton and J.T. Realmuto are out of the lineup for the Marlins, which has to be a welcome sight for Reds pitchers.

News, Notes, and Pre-Game Reading

Some sad news today as former Reds great Lee May has passed away. The first baseman was elected to the Reds Hall of Fame in 2006 after hitting .274/.321/.490 with 147 home runs with the team from 1965 to 1971. The Big Bopper was ultimately sent to the Astros in the trade that brought Joe Morgan, Cesar Geronimo, and Jack Billingham to the Queen City.

Anthony DeSclafani is slowly working his way back:

Today’s contest is the free game of the day on MLB.TV:

Straily seems to be excited about facing his former team:

Former Reds outfielder Chris Heisey is now a free agent:

Final Thoughts

It’s always fun when two players who were traded for each other face off. Although the Reds are in a free fall right now, this will be an intriguing game with Castillo and Straily dueling against one another. Both pitchers will likely be throwing with a little bit of pride on the line as they look to show their former team it made a mistake in dealing them.

64 Responses

  1. J

    Price seems to be powerless to prevent these long stretches of terrible games. I firmly believe he should be fired ASAP, if for no other reason than to send a message that this is not okay. Even bad teams aren’t supposed to look this bad, and we know the Reds have far more talent than a typical bad team. I can’t see how anyone is helped by allowing Price to continue managing this team, including Price himself. His future is as a pitching coach somewhere, and this certainly isn’t helping him land that job.


      I agree. Under Price, we always seem to tank after the ASB. So it’s okay to lose and lose a lot? Not all the blame can be laid on Price due to Bailey and Disco being injured but I think you do need to send a message that its time for this crap to stop. It’s embarrassing.


        Not true. Last season the Reds much better after the ASB going just 2 games under .500.


      The Reds DO NOT have more talent than other bad teams. It would be crime against humanity to give the Reds manager job to another person. Nobody will look good managing this roster. The task is finding and developing much better talent than they have today.

      • BT28

        I agree with Playtowin on the talent of this team and I would include the manager in that discussion. Top to bottom, including scouting, the entire organization is lacking. On a consistent basis, the ideas and analysis that are put forth on RLN make much more sense than anything coming from Reds management.

      • J

        Which other 20-games-under .500 team’s roster would you prefer to have? I’d take this one in a heartbeat.

  2. old-school

    “We’ve just come to a point where we’re not going to lose anymore.”

    Bob Castellini -April 2008

    Wayne Krivsky assembled a great team and deserved better and his sloppy termination two weeks into the 2008 season begs the question. Do we accept losing now?

    Well, Bob?

    Much time has been spent debating the shortstop position…overpaying for a risky Cozart FA deal vs committing to a weak hitting unproven Peraza vs Suarez changing positions again.
    Wayne Krivsky drafted, scouted, signed and developed both Cozart and Gregorious.
    Until this year, the Reds have not drafted a true shortstop with a high pick in a decade. Billy Hamilton doesn’t count and neither does Blandino as they weren’t drafted to play SS. The Reds haven’t developed a shortstop in a decade. They haven’t even tried. Way down in Billings there might be a sighting of a real shortstop….if you squint long and hard.

    Walt Jocketty signed weak hitting really young Latin players and ran them through the Reds DR leagues for years figuring he had mastered the Davey Concepcion recipe for shortstop development. Add Jose Garcia to Alfredo Rodriguez ( OPS .583 and 23 years old). This approach failed miserably. The offensive stats of shortstops at the Reds AAA/AA/A+ and low A are…..well…. offensive. Corey Seager sat there in 2012 in the early teens as a first round pick. Jocketty took high school pitcher Nick Travieso instead. Of course he did. You can never have too many young pitchers right? Jeter Downs is the most accomplished SS in the minors….2 months out of high school.

    The Reds have a crisis at shortstop of Walt Jocketty’s doing.
    I would let Peraza play every inning of every game at SS and hope he can improve. There’s no one else coming up.


      Hope like heck Senzel is ready next year for 3rd and move Suarez over to SS but for the remainder of the year, yeah, I guess you go with Peraza and see what he can do. Nice post Old School. I thought Krivsky was doing a good job too.


      I agree Krivsky did not get a fair shake here. Also the drafts have been awful in regard to position players. Hopefully this is changing.

      • David

        Krivsky went to make room for Jocketty. A crony of Castellini’s.
        And now, Dick Williams, part of the ownership Famiglia.

        Cue “The Godfather” theme.

  3. Steve Mancuso

    Chris Welsh just said on the TV broadcast that Dan Straily was the Reds best starting pitcher last year. That’s not true. Anthony DeSclafani was *clearly* better than Straily. Argument that Brandon Finnegan was pretty much the same as Straily.


      Agree with you Steve. However Straily last and this year was and is better than any Reds starting pitcher this year.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Luis Castillo and Scott Feldman both better than Straily’s 2016 season.


        Huh? Steve you must be joking. Let’s look at Straily’s 2016 line with the Reds 14 wins 8 losses. 3.76 ERA 191 innings pitched and gave up only 154 hits- 1.186 whip. He was the winning pitcher in 21% of the Reds games. He did all this for a team that lost 94 games and was 26 games under 500. No Reds pitcher this season has matched Straily’s 2016 performance.

      • Steve Mancuso

        let’s just leave it that we look at different measurements for pitchers

  4. seat101

    Later when I feel A little bit cheerier, I’ll tell you my funny Lee May story.

    I am enjoying the top of the second very much, though.

  5. james garrett

    Castiilo retired the first 6 in a row.We went done offensively on 8 pitches.I like the first sentence better.Go Castillo and show off a little bit.

    • seat101

      70+ pitches in four innings and an injury scare.
      Trade value not increasing

  6. Wizeman

    Guess I am fortunate that I am watching first game since the all start break. In espouse to an above commen. Does it seem out of the realm of possibility that we see if Suarez is a capable shortstop. He has turned into a superb third baseman but going to have to find a spot to play senzel

    • msanmoore

      He’s not going to provide that kind of defensive value at SS. It took a while for him to adjust to 3B and he’s done a stellar job of it. I know it creates a decision point, but from what I’ve seen and read, he needs to stay at 3B.

  7. james garrett

    I know Stanton and their catcher aren’t playing but 4 scoreless innings by any of our young guys does create some hope.I will not anoint Castillo because he will have some stinkers but his stuff will play anywhere and he just looks like a major league pitcher.

    • msanmoore

      Much improved at this point. Let’s see how he handles the 6th inning. That’s “the great unknown” for our starters lately. Rocking only 70 pitches which is encouraging.

  8. james garrett

    A 7 pitch inning against our two three and four hitters.Just amazing.Castillo has little or no margin for error today but he may not need it.Go Castillo.

  9. magi210

    Reds starter goes 5. It’s the little things at this point.

  10. james garrett

    Yes it is the little things but we need to reward this kid with some offense.Bottom of the order is hitting and working the count.The rest is see ball and swing.

  11. seat101

    I don’t know about the rest of you but I am watching a very good ball game!

  12. msanmoore

    I’ll call that a “redemption DP” courtesy of Tucker Barnhart. Way to play completely heads up ball.

  13. magi210

    Insurance run!

    (On an odd marketing note, shouldn’t State Farm or Geico be sponsoring insurance runs? :))

    • msanmoore

      Great American Insurance would have to sponsor it … then again, they pay enough to name the ballpark.

  14. msanmoore

    Can Duvall give us one of his doubles right now, please? And can Billy Hatcher resist sending Slo-Mo-Joe(y) if that happens?

  15. Darrin

    Peraza has had a good series at the plate……for the first time in a while

    • msanmoore

      So anxious to take a BB he wanted it after only 3 of them. He does appear to be stepping up to the role very well of late. Small sample, of course, but encouraging none the less.

      • Darrin

        If he can stop chasing the low and away ball consistently it’ll be a major plus

  16. msanmoore

    7 innings of 3-hit, 1-run ball. You’d swear there was a complete solar eclipse coming up or something. Very rare and fun to observe.


    Castillo is impressive. He offers hope for the future. It is wonderful when a team gets a well pitched game. Barnhart is a solid player.

  18. msanmoore

    OK, let’s see if we can walk Billy and repeat the last inning

    • msanmoore

      That would make it Deja Vu all over again, right?

  19. Luckeydad

    Looking for an answer…….when has a Reds starting pitcher make it past 7 innings? It seems like an eternity.

    • msanmoore

      Is the only time the complete game from what seems like forever ago?

    • Jack

      5/26. Today was only the 4th time this year. Pathetic.

  20. msanmoore

    A GABP homer … we’ll have to settle for a long out that moves up both runners. Nice work by Scooter to pay attention and advance. Let’s see if Adam can catch one.

  21. msanmoore

    Iggy warming up … I like to see that.

  22. msanmoore

    Played ourselves out of that opportunity. Good thing we have a 5-run lead.

  23. msanmoore

    OK, that last pitch was NASTY!!!!

  24. msanmoore

    106 pitches over 8 innings. Very nice and very welcome by the team and we fans. I was beginning to forget what a win looked like.

    • msanmoore

      Efficient and threw strikes. He did his part very well today.

  25. Darrin

    Has peraza ever had a two walk game before?

    • msanmoore

      5 since the AS break after only 5 total before.

  26. msanmoore

    Billy and Jose walking … I need to go buy lottery tickets.

  27. msanmoore

    Anybody hear Barnhart’s remark on that can of corn? Always a gamble to have the field mics on …

  28. msanmoore

    I’m guessing this is “rust” we’re seeing.

  29. msanmoore

    As Mary Beth Ellis would say, “This is why we can’t have nice things.”

    I need to go mow my yard before heading out of town. I think I’ve seen enough.

  30. Jeff Morris

    I think that the Reds rebuilding players, the ones they got in the trades, when Walt J was the general manager…I am wondering what will become of them. Will they be bad, just okay or so-so, or good baseball players. Schebler, Duvall, Peraza, Suarez, and the Pitchers too…Disco, Finnegan, among others. How will they work out? If they don’t work out, and the Reds continue to be a poor team, with no improvement in the next year and the year after that….I am put the blame squarely on Walt J, for failing in recruiting the talent. Some blame goes to Price, but most goes to Walt J. for failing!

    • jazzmanbbfan

      Law of averages says some will work out, some won’t. Duvall wasn’t even the centerpiece of the Leake trade so he has certainly worked out vs. what was expected. I think Suarez will end up being above average. His fielding at 3B is already there. If Disco can get/stay healthy he will be good (not great but in exchange for Latos that was a great trade).

  31. bouwills

    Williams has to find a way to get some more Marlins pitching (Castillo & DeSclafani is about what we got). I say Hunter Greene & maybe Cingrani or Storen for either of their top 2 prospects (LHP) plus rights to Straily. You know DeSclafani, Castillo, Straily, Bailey, plus the least of the rest of the worst(Adleman, Romano, Stephenson, Reed, Bonilla-until Mahle is ready) may not be too bad.