BREAKING NEWS (7 P.M. EST): BRYAN PRICE TO RETURN AS REDS MANAGER IN 2018, CINCINNATI.COM REPORTS
Prior to tonight’s middle game of a three-game series against the Pirates at PNC Park, the biggest Reds-related news didn’t happen in Pittsburgh.
— Doug Gray (@dougdirt24) September 2, 2017
I will echo what our Doug Gray said in his report about not being a doctor. But I was a die-hard Reds fan at a time when a young slugger named Nick Esasky came up through the minor league system. He could crush any pitch that wasn’t a curve (at least while with the Reds). Before the 1989 season, he was traded to the Boston Red Sox for first baseman Todd Benzinger and pitcher Jeff Sellers. (Benzinger, of course, was the first baseman on the 1990 World Championship Reds team.) Esasky had a great season in Boston in ’89, hitting 30 homers, driving in 108, with an OPS+ of 133.
Esasky’s contract expired after that season, and he signed a lucrative free agent deal with Atlanta, the team near his home area in Georgia. But he played only nine games for the Braves, as an ear infection that caused vertigo ended his career.
Ear infections are not career-ending for every player, but with the cruel fate suffered by a former Reds farm system product still fresh in our memories, we must hope for the absolute best for Senzel, who — barring any illness or injury issues — seems to be destined to make his major league debut sometime in 2018.
Mahle is making his second start since his recall, and both will have been against Pittsburgh. It provides a chance to see how a team that just saw Mahle a few days ago will fare against him. In his first start last Sunday, Mahle pitched well in the early innings, and that is often easy to attribute to a team seeing a pitcher for the first time. We’ll see how things go this evening for MLB.com’s 86th overall ranked minor league prospect (and the Reds’ second-ranked pitching prospect behind Hunter Greene).
Taillon struggled in his last outing, which was against the Reds and Mahle, throwing 108 pitches in just four innings of work. He allowed five hits and four walks (three went to Votto, who walked five times overall in that game) while striking out four. We’ll see if Taillon chooses to throw Votto any strikes this evening.
All Reds relievers should be available, with the possible exception of Asher Wojciechowski, who pitched two innings Friday.
|CF Billy Hamilton||2B Josh Harrison|
|SS Zack Cozart||LF Starling Marte|
|1B Joey Votto||CF Andrew McCutchen|
|LF Adam Duvall||1B Josh Bell|
|2B Scooter Gennett||3B David Freese|
|3B Eugenio Suarez||C Elias Diaz|
|RF Phillip Ervin||RF Jordan Luplow|
|C Stuart Turner||SS Jordy Mercer|
|P Tyler Mahle||P Jameson Taillon|
In Mahle’s first start, his catcher was Chad Wallach, who had caught him in the minors. It’s not clear if Stuart Turner has ever caught Mahle except maybe in the bullpen, so we’ll see what effect, if any, that has tonight. The Pirates’ lineup is not their best, so that may help.
Jose Peraza is 8-for-11, with a 1.659 OPS, career-wise against Taillon, but not in the lineup.
News and Notes
Bryan Price explains why he pulled Luis Castillo after four innings and 89 pitches Friday …
— FOX Sports Ohio (@FOXSportsOH) September 2, 2017
Too bad Reds TV will likely miss this priceless moment …
— Comcast Western PA (@ComcastWestrnPA) September 2, 2017
Photo captions, please …
— Montzster (@montzster) September 2, 2017
If you have a few minutes before the game, take a look at this video. I was at an event near Chicago recently where he performed. He mentioned to the crowd that he formerly played minor league baseball in the Reds system, so I looked him up. He has the trick golf shots down to an absolute art form.
Tom Mitsoff is a lifelong Reds fan who grew up in the Dayton suburb of Beavercreek, Ohio. He lived a teenage life atypical of most his age by prioritizing following the Reds. At one point in the 1970s and early 1980s, Tom kept complete scorecards on more than 1,000 consecutive Reds games. Now that adult life has forced him to move on from his beloved Southwest Ohio, he follows the Reds daily through MLB.TV and other online media sources, including Redleg Nation.