2017 Reds / Game Thread

Reds at Brewers — August 12, 2017

Everyone take a deep breath. Despite trying their best to blow a 10-2 lead in Friday’s series opener, the Reds (49-67) managed to squeak out an 11-10 win over the Brewers (59-59) and are now riding a three-game winning streak. Don’t look now, but the Redlegs have won eight of their last 12 games since snapping a six-game losing streak against the Marlins on July 30.

They’ll look to win their fourth consecutive game and hand the reeling Brewers their seventh straight loss tonight at 7:10 p.m. ET.

Starting Pitchers

Name IP ERA xFIP K% BB%
Scott Feldman 103.2 4.34 4.09 19.8% 7.8%
Brent Suter 54.1 3.31 4.10 20.4% 6.2%

Following a month-long stint on the disabled list for right knee inflammation, Scott Feldman will take the mound again for the Reds tonight. His only second-half start came on July 17 against the Nationals and ended after one inning as he exited with the injury. Before hitting the DL, Feldman was the Reds’ most consistent starter, boasting a career-high strikeout rate and going six or more innings nine times (which still leads the staff). Although he missed almost four weeks, Feldman did not go on a rehab assignment. He takes the place of Tim Adleman in the starting rotation.

Feldman vs. Brewers

Feldman faced the Brewers twice in April, and neither outing went well. The Reds lost both games, as he pitched five innings and gave up five walks in each start.

Here are his career numbers against the Brewers (stats courtesy of Baseball Reference):


Brent Suter, a Cincinnati native and an alumnus of Moeller High School, will make his ninth start of the season for Milwaukee tonight. A former 31st-round pick out of Harvard University in 2012, the left-hander made his way to the big leagues last season and broke into the Brewers’ starting rotation on a full-time basis this year after Chase Anderson suffered an oblique injury. Though he was an unheralded prospect coming through the Milwaukee farm system, Suter has settled into in the major-league staff and already outranks $50-million pitcher Matt Garza in fWAR (1.3 vs. 1.2) despite pitching 40 fewer innings.

Suter doesn’t beat batters by blowing them away with his fastball. In fact, he owns the lowest average fastball velocity among all pitchers in the game who have thrown the pitch 500 or more times, as Ryan Romano at Beyond the Box Score wrote about. The next closest pitcher, the Dodgers’ Rich Hill, throws the four-seamer nearly three mph faster. Romano also notes Suter is the fastest worker in the game, taking only 18 seconds on average between pitches. In addition, Suter generates ground balls at a slightly above-average rate (45.4%) and keeps the ball in the park, with only four home runs allowed this season.

Two of those four home runs were hit by Yadier Molina two starts ago, the first of back-to-back poor outings for Suter coming into tonight’s game. The southpaw lasted only 9.1 innings and gave up eight runs on 13 hits in his previous two starts.

Suter vs. Reds

Suter has only appeared in four career games against the Reds, all in relief. He struck out two in a perfect inning against them earlier in 2017.

Here are his career numbers against Cincinnati hitters:

Lineups

Reds

Brewers

CF Billy Hamilton (65 wRC+) 2B Jonathan Villar (60 wRC+)
SS Zack Cozart (153 wRC+) 1B Eric Thames (124 wRC+)
1B Joey Votto (166 wRC+)  LF Ryan Braun (128 wRC+)
LF Adam Duvall (110 wRC+)  3B Travis Shaw (130 wRC+)
3B Eugenio Suárez (119 wRC+) RF Domingo Santana (116 wRC+)
2B Scooter Gennett (125 wRC+)  SS Orlando Arcia (88 wRC+)
C Devin Mesoraco (88 wRC+) CF Keon Broxton  (86 wRC+)
RF Patrick Kivlehan (87 wRC+) C Andrew Susac (-100 wRC+)
P Scott Feldman (4.09 xFIP) P Brent Suter (4.10 xFIP)

— Devin Mesoraco is making his first start behind the plate in a week.

— Jesse Winker is getting the day off in favor of Patrick Kivlehan.

News, Notes, and Pre-Game Reading

Is Tucker Barnhart emerging as the everyday catcher for the Reds?

The Arismendy Alcantara era has ended. Considering how poor he’s been at the plate this season (.171/.181/.248, 6 wRC+, 35.2 K%, 1.9 BB% in 108 plate appearances), there’s probably a decent chance he clears waivers and heads to Louisville. The move also opens up a spot on the 40-man roster.

Eugenio Suarez could see some action at shortstop:

Both teams are wearing throwback uniforms in honor of Negro Leagues Tribute Night. Here’s the Reds’ look:

Stat of the Day

Joey Votto is good.

I wanted to see how Votto’s O-Swing% (percentage of pitches swung at outside the strike zone) ranked in Reds history. I was actually surprised to find out it ranks eighth since 2002, when FanGraphs began tracking the stat.

Player Season O-Swing%
Scott Hatteberg 2006 11.1%
D’Angelo Jimenez 2004 11.5%
Barry Larkin 2002 14.0%
Ryan Freel 2004 14.0%
Adam Dunn 2002 14.7%
Ryan Freel 2006 15.1%
Adam Dunn 2004 15.7%
Joey Votto 2017 16.1%
Adam Dunn 2006 17.2%
Aaron Boone 2002 17.8%

(Looks like Scott Hatteberg is, indeed, a good player.)

Votto’s O-Swing% in the second half is 9.5 percent, though, so he’s climbing up the list quickly.

Final Thoughts

A win tonight would put the Reds one away from their season high winning streak of five and push the Brewers to their worst losing streak since 2015. Let’s just see if the Redlegs can do it without coughing up an eight-run lead this time.

82 thoughts on “Reds at Brewers — August 12, 2017

  1. Suarez could take grounders at shortstop? They have Peraza at SS as a backup.
    Could Nick Senzel be fast-forwarding things?

  2. I used to love watching Ryan Freel play, such intensity……and such an unfortunate story. I totally forgot how good of an obp guy he was those few years.

  3. Looks like the brewers are on the cusp of signing Niel Walker. I hope he doesn’t play for the blue crew until the reds leave town. If memory serves me right, he devourers reds pitching.

  4. Hope Alcantara clears waivers and goes to Louisville. Showed some flashes earlier in the year and maybe with some consistent playing will come around. Former 1st round pick.

  5. I think Barnhart is clearly the #1 C unless and until they find somebody better which is starting to look like it may be a while. I have a lot of respect for Mesoraco’s heart and willingness to solder through; but, the sad truth is he just hasn’t been able to get healthy and stay on the field to reestablish his credentials.

    Perhaps Meso can get healthy, play sufficiently, and hit well enough over the remainder of the season to allow the Reds to off load his contract to the DH league at a savings of a significant portion of the $13M due him next year. That’s probably the best future for both him and the Reds.

    • He hasn’t played in two years but I expect he will be better next year but never return to where he was before the injuries

    • I also feel bad for the way things have turned out for Mesoraco and I wish him well. Barnhart is a solid/average catcher who gets it done from the defensive and offensive side of a tough position.

      • Yes, it is a kind of tragedy of sports. Real tragedies are children getting cancer, tornadoes destroying people’s homes. But Devin is a nice guy, who has worked hard to come back from injury.

        • A tragedy of sports, Mr. David? I see it as a part of sports. There’s no reason for your sarcasm regarding my comment. At nearly age 81, I don’t need to be lectured about tragedy from you! Keep your response to anything I might say to the Reds and baseball and everything will be just fine.

  6. Lefties kill us especially the soft tossing quick working guys.We will have to be patient and take some pitches even if they are strikes and if we do we will get to him.Hacking early and often play right in to his hands.I saw him a month or so on MLB against the Orioles and he made then look silly

    • Billy down on 3 pitches but the rest are making this guy work,Duvall goes yard and we are up 2-0.

  7. Feldman is so crucial to the Reds future….great to have him back and blocking those pesky young guys from gaining any experience. This entire year was wasted

    • None of the reds young pitchers beside Castillo has shown nothing. Stephenson, Romano, Garrett and reed have all been garbage. They need new pitchers not give those spares a chance

      • The guys you mentioned have 57 starts in the big leagues with Garrett having the most with 12.Nobody can be evaluated on such a small sample size regardless of how they perform especially a pitcher.

      • So you would have tossed John Smoltz, Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux to the curb as rookies too, eh? So much for 50 wins, much less 300 for Glavine and Maddux, careers ruined or maybe taking off with most hate enemies (Cardinals)?

        Seriously, the pitching prospects haven’t looked very good, but FEW young pitchers do in years 1 and 2. They need more starts, even if they’re getting lit up. Sometimes humility can play a big role in a pitcher working harder and becoming an SP1. Getting beat around in 2016 and 2017 may be the best thing for the Reds juggernaut of the next decade.

  8. I cannot remember a single Reds sp returning from the DL & giving a good accounting of himself. This isn’t just a Feldman, or Bailey, or Finnegan problem. Rhis is a Reds problem.

    • Developing pitching in general is a big problem and it’s been that way my entire lifetime. You’d think they’d have a spell of 5 or 6 years where they were turning out a good starting pitcher each season, but they have been few and far between and I cannot remember the last time we developed an ace. Cueto may count I suppose, but that’s it. i have been following the Reds since late 70s (as a young kid) and our best farm raised pitchers were Soto, Browning, Cueto and crickets…yuck. What is worse is the gap between Browning and Cueto, not to mention only Cueto could be generously called an “ace”. Soto and Browning had a good year or two, but hardly lock-down starters you’d feel good about rolling out to win game 7.

      Has Dick Williams ever specifically talked about rebuilding the pitching developement and strategies? They need to clean house or at least do a thorough vetting of how the system brings in and works with pitching prospects. Maybe they throw too often, not often enough, maybe they don’t work enough on proper release points or wind ups or pre-game preparation or day before preparation or off-season exercise plans, etc. I dunno, but its been broke for decades and judging by the Reds best players of all-time, our pitching cupboard is pretty embarrassing compared to other long time franchises. We have jokes for stud SPs on our all-time team compared to most other teams that have existed more than 100 years.

  9. Another fine assist from Duval, cutting down Thames at the plate. Also, have to give credit to Mez on the other end of the throw

  10. I was kind of surprised they didn’t have him in center tonight and Winker in right because Billy needs a day off and he is woeful against lefties.I know that hurts us on defense but if there is a time to experiment a little and play some percentages its now.

  11. I’m not sure exactly where to look for this, but the exit velocity on Kivlehan’s homer has to be astounding. It got out about as fast as I have seen a homer go out this year. If anyone finds that, please post it.

  12. Braun HR vs. Reds…you can set your clock by it. Shack and the rest of the bullpen will have to cover 5 innings. Not gonna end well

  13. Bryan Price is going to want to take those glasses off if there is going to be 4 more innings of that. Very little “relief” on the eyes, or the heart.

  14. Now that was an eventful inning for the Brewers.Homer,strikeouts,single,walk and hit by pitch.Good grief and we still lead by one.

  15. The poor relations between (The) Ohio State University and organizations in-state continue.

    First, the OSU basketball team refuses to play in-state. Now, they don’t get represented with a Reds-branded hat on College Weekend.

    Sad.

    • The big community college in Columbus lives in its own world, anyway…many of you who live in the greater QC don’t fully appreciate how exceptional UC is in comparison. (I know, expect in CFB.)

  16. Shack belongs in last year’s bullpen…tie game…Thames goes deep, this is a recording…10th vs the Reds this year

  17. Chris Welsh lecturing about “letting guys go early” and using Scooter Gennett and Brewers as an example was bad.

    The Brewers moved Villar to make room for the acquired Travis Shaw, who was odd man out in Boston but still highly regarded.

    Villar was a 3.0 WAR player in 2016.
    Gennett was 0.1 WAR player in 2016. (and 0.2 in 2015)

    Reds got lucky with Scooter’s first half performance, but to make the Brewers out as impatient or incompetent is either lazy or being an ultra shill for the Reds.

      • That’s not true. He’s probably the only one who even mentions stats. His breakdown of Lorenzen was spot on.

  18. I am watching the Milwaukee TV feed because the Cincinnati feed is blacked out here in southern Wisconsin. The Fox Trax pitch tracker appears to show the home plate umpire is missing many, many pitches that are not even close. It almost looks to me like the Fox Trax is miscalibrated. Any discussion like this on the Reds telecast?

    • I’m seeing the same thing on Brewers TV. all the pitches seem to be skewed to the LH batters box

      • Ironically, I went down to Charlotte Wednesday to see the PGA 2nd round, and tried to watch on MLB At Bat, and the Reds were blacked out down there….with radio only… What gives?

        • Oddly enough, North Carolina gets the Reds on TV. Especially in the western side of the state – it’s either FS Carolina or FS Tennessee, I can’t remember which.

  19. Billy 0-5 with 3K’s and did I mention he needs a day off.Oh yes he will play tomorrow and again will lead off.Price just does not get it that Billy should not get the most at bats on the team.So many more bigger issues but gee when you talk about playing to win and putting guys in the best position to win then well enough said.

  20. If Billy Hamilton was on a hot streak, he is cooling off. 0 for 5 tonight, 1 for 6 last night, day before, etc., etc.

    It seems like he is seeing more LHPs of late, which he can’t hit.

    But, when it’s discussed how the Reds are much better at home than away, Billy has played a part in that.

    This season, entering tonight
    (Thanks, FanGraphs, membership has its perks)
    (Not really, anyone can access)

    Home in 2017 (LHP and RHP combined)
    .324 OBP
    85 wRC+

    Road in 2017
    .270 OBP
    46 wRC+
    (over 50 percentage points worse than league average. For a leadoff hitter. Yikes.)

  21. That 0-2 Votto magic. That is what I am remembering most about him this season.

    Lots of pitchers fatten their stats on 0-2 pitches, but not on Votto. Not at all.

  22. Price should have told Mesoraco to shut up, and Price should have gotten ejected.

    Good on Mesoraco for showing some fire. Poor on Price acting like a college professor.

    (I know ejections don’t “fire up” MLBers, but what the hell. Price should still act like he gives a damn, even if he no longer does)

  23. that felt awful. hate to lose, really hate it when we come from ahead to lose. Seems like it happens too often.

  24. Storen can’t go more than one inning….and you let Adelman in? I guess you don’t have anyone else to use in the bullpen.

  25. In theory, I realize Adelman came in to eat innings but he’s been throwing batting practice lately then gives it up on a wild pitch. Nice! However, the opposite in the bottom of the 9th when Storen was pitching. That was actually exciting and he threw strikes. What a concept.

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