I had occasion a few minutes ago to check back on Homer Bailey’s two no-hitters. I assumed his fastball velocity tonight would be lower than those glorious nights. On a sweltering Cincinnati summer evening in 2013, Bailey’s fastball averaged 94.6 mph. He struck out 9 batters and walked one. The previous September, a crisp, cool night in Pittsburgh, Bailey struck out 10 and walked one, but his fastball averaged just 91 mph. He threw fastballs on 77% and 72% of his pitches those nights.

Tonight, Bailey threw his fastball 54% of the time in the first five innings, then 21 of 30 pitches in the 6th. He struck out seven and walked none. His average fastball velocity was 92 mph. Make what you want out of all of that.

Cincinnati Reds 1  Philadelphia Phillies 6 || Box Score || Win % || Exit Velocities

Homer Bailey’s third start of the 2018 was his best of the young season. Bailey threw 93 pitches over 6 innings. He notably went the first 5.1 innings without giving up a hit. He struck out the side in the 6th.

In the fifth inning, with his fastball velocity (and adrenaline?) creeping up, Bailey lost a little bit of control. After going 3-2 before striking out the opposing pitcher, he went to a 3-1 count on Phillies leadoff hitter Cesar Hernandez. Hernandez then lined a grooved 93 mph fastball into right field for the Phillies first hit of the night. Two batters later, Odubel Herrera drove Hernandez in with a double off the wall in right field. Herrera’s hit was on a pitch diving out the bottom of the strike zone. It was a great pitch, just better hitting.

Jared Hughes pitched the seventh and gave up a leadoff double and two-out single to surrender the go-ahead run. Pitchers, like Hughes, who are signed because of intense ground ball tendencies and to induce double plays do not always face runners on first base. Also remember that Hughes has been released and non-tendered by two NL Central clubs the past two seasons. And he’s 32, eight months older than Yovanni Gallardo.

A lot of people on the internets wanted Price to walk JP Crawford so that Hughes would have faced the Phillies pitcher. That’s not what would have happened. The Phillies would have put up a pinch hitter, probably Maikel Franco, a much better hitter than Crawford. In fact, Crawford was hitless in his previous 18 at bats. On the other hand, walking Crawford would have forced Nola from the game, for what that’s worth. One inning of Nola pitching, I guess.

The Reds scored their run on a walk and stolen base by Billy Hamilton followed by a single from Jesse Winker.

Tonight was Alex Blandino’s (25) debut with the Reds, starting at 3B. Blandino was the Reds first-round pick in 2014 (29th pick overall) out of Stanford where he played shortstop with a promising track record (Wes Jenkins). As recently as early 2017, his minor league career was stagnating. But, Blandino turned things around (Doug Gray) in the second half of 2017. Blandino made a throwing error on the first ball he fielded. He went 0-for-3 at the plate, with two strikeouts.

Tanner Rainey (25) was selected by the Reds in the 2nd round of the 2015 draft out of the University of West Alabama. He was a starter in the Reds organization in 2015 and 2016 before being moved to the bullpen last year. He closed games for both Pensacola and Daytona. His four-seam fastball averaged 99 mph in his two innings pitching for Louisville this week. His slider clocked in at a Dibblesque 90 mph. Brantley: “From the exact same arm slot.” Only Stephen Strasburg threw a harder major league slider last year.

Rainey pitched the 8th inning, featuring a 96-97 mph fastball. He loaded the bases before giving up a two-out grand slam. Better days await Tanner Rainey, you can count on that.

Nick Senzel (22) did, in fact, play 3B for the Louisville Bats tonight, raising the possibility of his debut in a Reds uniform on Friday. If somehow the Reds batting order that night starts Jesse Winker, Senzel, Joey Votto … I don’t know what I’ll do. Senzel went 0-for-4 tonight with a walk.

By all means, Thom and Marty, keep making fun of the Phillies manager while your own team is 2-8.

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky’s Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve’s thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

Join the conversation! 80 Comments

  1. Ok, no offense tonight. But they were facing Nola. Tough way for Blandino to have to start his MLB career.

    • It could have been Syndergarard, Kershaw, Scherzer or Strasburg, now that would have been tough.

  2. Earlier on the game thread, a poster said Something along the lines of “he’s not a snowflake where in bed second” referring to the former Stanford Cardinal Alex Blandino.

    Then there were complaints about a rookie pitcher coming in and a one run game.

    Just sayin’

    • Two different posters made two different comments.
      I for one am glad they used Rainey, his stuff is electric.

      People were wondering where Garrett was. Apparently nobody has an answer for that question. Either he’s sick, hurt, or Brian Price.

      • And as Jim Walker noted below. They may be holding him back for the next start from the #5 slot.

  3. That game tonight Reds fans is why Price, Riggleman and Jenkins should be shown the door. If you watched the 7th and 8th you know what I’m talking about. Embarrassing.

  4. On to 2019!!!!
    This season is officially over.

    • With a MLB worst 2-8 record we can now start looking at next year’s draft. Who are the candidates to be our #1 overall pick?

      • Doug does weekly (more or less) articles on this at Redsminorleague.com.
        That being said, Brady Singer, Brice Turang, Matthew Liberatore, Nolan Gorman, and Shane McClanahan look good as of now.

  5. Quackenbush (4) and Brice (6.2) have both pitched more innings than Iglesias (3.1) this season. So has the combination of Gallardo (2.1) Stephens (1) and Rainey (1). Call me crazy, but I don’t feel this is giving the Reds the best opportunity to win close games. Maybe give your best reliever a chance to participate in a 7th inning tie game once in a while — or even when you’re behind by a run — and see what happens. It can’t possibly turn out any worse that what we’ve been witnessing.

    • Makes you wonder who is calling the shots. The only thing we can do as fans is not go.

  6. Why wasn’t a left hander pitching in the 7th. Ok. I’ll give you a pass. But why not walk Crawford and force them to pinch hit for Nola. Then why a rookie in the 8th. And he threw five straight sliders. Bam. Gondi. Hello. Catcher calling the game. Staff let rookie in the game. This is the major leagues and I can watch better high school ball here in town.

    • i questioned the catcher also, Why five sliders? sheesh

      • He threw 3 straight to Hoskins, which totally fooled him for a strikeout

      • Tucker was forced into it a bit because the slider was getting over for a strike combined with the decision to load the bases.

    • Price might be calling the pitches from the dugout.

  7. I said this on Twitter during the game, but I’ll repeat it here because it baffles me: where is Raisel Iglesias? Is he hurt or sick? The Reds have been in a one-run contest in the eighth inning the last two days, and their best reliever was nowhere to be found in either game. Instead, Price goes with a pitcher signed on a minor-league contract in the offseason and another one who, while talented, is making his big-league debut. I just can’t comprehend it unless Iglesias is unavailable for some reason.

    • I agree. You bring a guy in with 17 career innings above Single A in a one run game in the 8th? I go with Iglesias too. Price has got to go. Feels like this season is lost already.

    • You can not fix stupid. There I said it.

    • See Jim’s comment above about a lefty. He must be keeping Garrett company. Leave the Humvee and the Ferrari in the garage in favor of a rusty old mustang (Gallardo) and a handful of Camrys… brilliant!

  8. Gallardo, Quackenbush, and a raw rookie put in high leverage situations while Amir Garrett sits in the bullpen. Four losses.

  9. Al Davis and the Raiders had “A Commitment to Excellence”
    Bob Castellini and Dick Williams have “A Commitment to Flatulence”

    They stink. Sell the team if you’re not going to try to be competitive! The Pirates don’t have much of a payroll either, but they went out and got Corey Dickerson and he’s giving them a big spark! Meanwhile the Reds front office does nothing. Reds fans deserve better! Sell the team!!

    • Remember Al Davis wouldn’t let his coach play his best player Marcus Allen for personal reason ? Hey Price is that the case here? Put Garrett in situations like last night and not mop up duty and I do believe Dick Williams is the true culprit because Price was a pitching coach and he would and should know better.

  10. To Old-School’s point up above, while the Reds have not even played 10% of their games in 2018, there does seems to a grasping of straws feel around the organization.

    -Gallardo signing and quick DFA
    -Rainey being pushed up to Cincy quickly, like Cody Reed was (he may stay and work out fine, but feels panicky, only 2 IP with Bats and the Reds bullpen a dumpster fire)
    -Duvall playing and being awful every night, while pushing Winker out of his natural position, LF, and benching Ervin, who got a hit the previous night playing in RF. Adam Duvall is not going to be a core piece of the Next Good Reds Team (whenever that arrives). Why is he blocking youngsters?

    Dick Williams was quoted as saying he needs to see the Reds progress. Price needs to go, and he will, to show that the front office is “on top of the situation.”

    But, this roster is the third-worst in the NL, behind the Marlins and Padres, and San Diego might have an argument. Teams looking to contend soon, like the Braves and Phillies, know who their core is, they are playing daily and in the rotation. The same cannot be said in Cincinnati. Williams owns this messiness as well.

    • Agree with every point you made. I’m not sure Williams sees this as his doing yet. Best point though is that, in a rebuild, you let the kids take their lumps and grow (Rainey and Blandino tonight, to be fair). I like Duvall and Hamilton, but Winker should be a mainstay and Ervin deserves time. Garrett not appearing much, to say nothing of starting, is dumbfounding.

  11. The road trip is nearing THIS IS SPINAL TAP levels of futility. I half-expect to hear that Rob Reiner is following the team around to make a “rock-umentary”, or that Nigel Tufnel has been acquired to pitch out of the bullpen. (It would only be appropriate for him to make his first appearance in tomorrow’s game, number 11 of the season.)

    • Friday night: Muppet Show followed by Reds game and fireworks.

    • Hmmm…this season as the “Smell the Glove Tour” does have some interesting parallels. I kinda like where you’re going with this.

      So does Bryan Price get to play the role of Artie Fufkin when he brings Gallardo in (over literally anyone else) to firebomb the game and then says to his team: “Do me a favor. Just kick my ass, okay? Kick this ass for a man, that’s all. Kick my ass. Enjoy. Come on. I’m not asking, I’m telling with this. Kick my ass.”

      • There would be one hell of a long line for that offer.

      • I’ve figured out the Spinal Tap / Reds Correlations:

        Bryan Price = the drummer who is constantly in danger of spontaneously combustion (and being replaced)

        Dick Williams = Viv Savage (the keyboard player; clueless, staring off into space)

        Our own Chad Dotson = Ian Faith (the man who remains the eternal optimist until there’s a straw that breaks the camel’s back) 🙂

        Walt Jocketty = Derek Smalls (the one who sees his job as “projecting strength”)

        Bob Castellini = David St. Hubbins (for no other reason than he’s the leader)

        Nigel Tufnel = the mass of the Reds fanbase, who eventually find they’ve had enough and quit (going to games). But one day they return (?)

        • Yes, these are very apt comparisons. Though I might go with the entire pitching staff as the drummer (since they’ve had so many assorted injuries/replacements).

          What about Phil Castellini as Jeanine Pettibone, who takes the role of trying to put earrings on this pig and makes the team look like an Australian’s nightmare, (Chad’s, err Ian’s, words, not mine)?

  12. It really did not matter putting Rainey in when they did. Losing 6-1 or losing 2-1, with Iglesias pitching the bottom of the eighth, is still a loss. If it was 2-1 with the Reds batting in the ninth, they would have faced Neris.

    Offensively this team is not getting it done. If they don’t get going soon, they are going to be in a hole they can’t climb out of.

    • Their already in that hole,sad to say.Last yr.they depended on the HR so much and now their not getting that even.Just don’t have quality major league hitters.Major shakeup is needed from top down and I even seen Garretts picture on back of a milk carton in store.

  13. I just noticed the link in the recap to exit velocities. A nice addition. I have not noticed this in the other game recaps.

    • We all use slightly different formats for the recaps. I think I used the Baseball Savant link last year. You should explore that page. If you choose Game Pitch Velocity, it shows real-time pitch, pitch speed and outcome. If you choose Away Pitchers (Reds were away team tonight) you get real-time breakdown of pitches and average pitch speeds. It’s really amazing the data available now.

      • Thanks, I was not aware of this resource.

        Poor J.J. Hoover, he just blew a save for the Brewers against the Cardinals.

  14. I said I think it was on Doug’s minorlieagues site before the season started on his predictions page, that the Key to the season was going to be offense getting off to a strong start until the young pitching can settle in and carry a bigger part of the load the rest of the season. The offense has been pretty lousy to this point, and with 2 of your top position players hurt in Schebler and Suarez doesn’t help. I think the pitching will eventually be very good this season, but the offense has got to somehow get it in gear soon.

  15. I’ve been as ardent supporter of Adam Duvall as anyone who posts or comments here. This said it is clear he needs to sit out at least a couple of games for a mental reset. Playing Ervin on consecutive nights to provide him some continuity would have thus been good for the team on two fronts.

    Garrett sits. Iglesias goes unused. A rookie debuts late in a one run game.

    If I had to guess about Garrett, I’d guess he wasn’t available tonight because now he is in limbo as the potential starter 4 days hence following Reed’s poor start with the Reds Monday paired with the inconclusive rehab start of Finnegan at AAA the same night.

    Just two weeks into the season there seems to be neither hand on the tiller.
    nor a sense of direction such a hand should point the tiller if it were on it.

    We can only hope if in fact Senzel arrives soon that it is part of a larger redirection undertaken with a true sense of purpose. However, I am not holding my breath that will be the case.

    • Jim, it took the Reds several hours of meetings with 36 folks from the organization to decide they should postpone Opening Day this year because of the weather. Somehow, I feel like all decisions in this organization must follow that script. No direction and way too many voices with no clear leader. That seems to best explain why so many head scratching decisions concerning the roster and player development.

      God help Reds fans because you can’t have a rain-out every game.

    • Excellent point Jim, about possibly holding Amir back to start in the #5 slot, next time out.

  16. You can’t tell me Price wants to really win…he has Amir G in the bullpen, and doesn’t use him tonight. Instead, uses the new guy, T Rainey. He has Amir G to start, but uses Cody Reed instead. Still rebuilding as last few years, just put guys out there to see how they will do and hope for the best. It’s basically tryouts again. Basically somewhere between weak Major league team and AAA, is what the Reds are. Wouldn’t be surprised if they lose over 100 games this year.

  17. Beaten twice already by a manager who uses an advanced approach. The only positive, I see tonight, is Homer continues to improve and that the year of sorting is
    getting on with it a year or two behind schedule. Even if the results are mostly bad, so far, it’s early.

    • If Homer could somehow be consistently good like last night, there’s a chance they could move him to a contender before the deadline.

  18. Pluses? Bailey looks like he’s going to be good Homer enough to make a meaningful contribution, two rookies debuted (even if poorly or at a bad time, they got out there), and Price is actively working his way out.

  19. I’ve seen many comments on here about Pennington & Gosselin playing while Blandino & Dixon were in Louisville, well OK- Blandino was called up & started. You can’t complain both ways. Same with the bullpen. They brought up Weiss. They brought up Rainey & dfaed Gallardo. Rookie pitchers have to be used also.It was Hughes that gave up the winning run. Fact is- none of the Reds prospects- not Castillo, nor Romano, nor Blandino, nor Winker, or even Senzel are polished ML ballplayers .This team doesn’t have the offense, the defense, or the pitching to win half their games this year. PLUS, no manager can change that.You want to complain? Kick the can upstairs to the GM (& the past GM) where futility abounds.

    • well put. It’s pretty difficult, if not impossible–cognitively–to reconcile a long-term perspective and a desire to win each game when it could be won. In the situation, Iglesias for two innings puts you into the best position to win; long term, Rainey is a high upside reliever who remembers that he was given the chance in a “high-leverage” (though realistically meaningless) situation in which he failed. I certainly don’t think that Bryan Price is thinking at this abstract level, because he has no reason to. But at it wasn’t Gallardo.

  20. Price using Rainey in that situation looked to me like a guy giving the finger to the GM. “(You didn’t like me using a Gallardo in close games? You want to fast track the young guys? Fine. I’ll throw Rainey right into it.”)

    And who was the genius who decided to issue an intentional walk to load the basis for the poor kid? Great plan: ML debut, one run game in the 8th, has gone to three balls on almost every batter he’s seen, knock on him in his brief professional career has been control. So let’s load the bases for him.

    What kind of a manager does that? Not one I want developing my young talent.

    • This sums up my feelings. I do want Price to go with the young guys over guys who won’t contribute to the future. I also don’t want to see guys set up to fail. I like that Blandino started and the results last night don’t matter to me, just get him time and see how he adjusts. But putting Rainey in for his MLB debut, in a 1 run game in the 8th, to face the top of the order and three straight LH hitters, and then to intentionally load the bases for him…..that’s just setting him up to fail. If he had gone to Garrett in this situation he still would have been going to a young guy, but it would have made a heck of a lot more sense as Garrett is a lefty and wasn’t making his debut in a pressure packed situation.

  21. Amir Garrrett has been sick with a cold and that was why he was likely unable to pitch, is my guess.
    The weather has a lot of the players feeling lousy. Playing and standing around on defense in the field is not a fun way to play baseball when it has been this cold. Winker was sick the other night.

    Duvall is not hitting well, and hitting is timing for a ML player. Joey Votto is not exactly tearing the cover off the ball, either. He hit a couple of pitches hard, right into the shift, but still no extra base hits this season. Joey Votto, future Hall of Famer.

    None of them are hitting particularly well. One run last night against the Philllies best pitcher.. Meh.

    This team is not good. Fire Price and then they promote Riggleman, about the same results

    • If Riggleman is the replacement for Price in the interim, why bother other than in the hope that the team will respond to a new face making out the lineup because the philosophy isn’t likely to change.

      • That is my thinking for firing Price. Maybe they will respond better to a different manager.

      • If Riggleman is made the interim manager, I’m not so sure the philosophy will not change since he’s had previous managerial experience in contrast to Price. This is and will continue to be a rough season but I see some hope emerging in the starting pitching with younger guys taking over in the bullpen. Also the arrival of Senzel and Blandino could energize the offense.

    • Who is your source on Garrett being sick?

      • There’s been multiple mentions during the game broadcasts over the past few games. Winker was scratched from lineup on Monday for the same reason.

  22. Adam Duvall is a concern. His struggles go back to the second half of last season. There’s a 90 game sample size where hes hitting around .200. At what point do we start to give Irvin starts in left field? Is it possible that Billy Hamilton is actually the second worst offensive outfielder on this team behind Duvall?

    • It’s possible. His OPS is currently higher than Votto’s, I believe. Tiny sample sizes in both situations.

  23. John Heyman has Price #1 on the Managerial “Hot-Seat” list. https://www.fanragsports.com/mlb/heyman-warm-manager-seats-worth-watching/

  24. Buck Showalter is the type of proven manager that gets the most out of the talent on a squad. He’s a proven winner. Just a thought.

  25. The Drums are beating louder for Price’s exit. “The schedule was going to make that tough. How Bryan Price has managed has seemingly made it tougher.” ~John Gray http://redsminorleagues.com/2018/04/11/bryan-price-is-on-the-hottest-of-seats/

  26. No Red hit the ball over 100 MPH. The Phillies had 8 such velocities.

  27. why do reds fans not come to the games when the team is bad?

    We should go to the game. throw peanuts on the field when a red strikes out. spill beer on a cardinals fan when Molina Gets a hit. Cuss, scream, reek havoc.
    When Adam Duval is put in the clean up spot again boo like crazy.

    I think it is time for a revolt. obviously sitting at home and watching the game on tv is not working.
    Are YOU WITH ME?!?!

    • I like your response, but I live in San Antonio, so I can’t help with attendance (or not). However, team owners listen to the bottom line. If fans don’t show for the games, nobody is there to buy peanuts to throw on the field or beer to pour on Cardinals fans (which sounds like fun). They pay attention to that.

      Now, I’m not saying boycott games. If I lived closer, I’d love to go. Just commenting on the logic.

    • Sounds like a good plan, find the largest guy you can and pour beer on him. Report back with the results

  28. Homer good. Offense Offensive. Result = BLARGH!!

  29. One question for Reds GM Dick Williams that none of the Reds beat writers have the courage to ask.

    “How is that standing pat over the winter on a last place team’s roster working out now for you?”

    What an imbecile there is in leading our beloved Redlegs off of the proverbial cliff. Williams has turned the Redlegmobile in to a Yugo.

    A second question would be for Reds owner Bob Castellini.

    “Are you going to hold GM Dick Williams accountable for this mess, or are you just going to scapegoat the manager Bryan Price?”

    Somebody give Big Bob some Spic ‘n Span and Ajax so he can clean house from the top down, please.
    The Rebuild was built on a weak foundation by a weak architect and has collapsed like a house of cards into a fiery rubble. Ronnie Milsap, Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder all could see this coming, but Dick Williams and Bob Castellini could not.
    Bartender, please, a couple of $12 GABP beers to help put out all these flames.

    • The company line for the last 3 years: “Well we got some guys injured, once they get back, we will see an improved ball club on the verge of competing.”

    • Here is an issue that tends to under the radar. I’ve read that while Castellini is the controlling owner/ managing partner, published reports indicate he actually owns only about 15% of the team. Supposedly in total, member of the Williams family are in nearly as deeply as Castellini is and hold a high position or two in the underlying corporate structure. Phil Castellini as COO and Dick Williams as Pres of Baseball operations seems to be their agreed arrangement for the next generation of club ownership. So good luck replacing Dick Williams.

      • I knew it!!! The Reds are in trouble!!! Dick Williams is going to take this organization down.

    • This rebuild in 2018 reminds me of 2014 ,2015? Duvall as much as I like the guy should have been traded. You’re either all in or not. Going half way is not good. Scooter should have been traded as well. He was at his peak last year. His defense is atrocious . Garrett needs to be either the 5th starter or comin g out of the bullpen more than once a week. Picking up guys like Pennington, Gosselin and Gallardo are a joke. Let the young guys play and let them know they aren’t getting yanked the first time they do bad. They are in there for awhile.

      • There was absolutely no market for corner OF. The only option was to give Duvall away or keep him.

        • What to make of Duvall. It’s early…but ouch….especially after second half.

    • You are making the assumption that the goal was to win this year.

      What moves would you have liked them to make? Trade Senzel and others for Yelich- he is on the DL and the Reds would still be losing. Sign three starting pitchers at $20 million a year (Arrieta was 3 years $75)? Now you have a good rotation, a better CF and a payroll approaching $200 million. Suarez is still injured, Schebler is still injured, your best prospect is gone, Votto is still not hitting, Duvall has been horrible, the new CF is injured. That team puts the Reds way over the budget and just trading or signing one or two guys does make a winner.

      The alternative is wait to see if you have three or four guys who can pitch, bring up Senzel, trade a few pieces at the deadline if there is an opportunity, and then figure out if one or two free agents can make the team competitive.. There was no reason for the Reds to make acquisitions over the winter to improve from a 70 loss team to an 80 loss team

  30. I don’t mind putting Rainey in the game to start the 8th. Probably not the ideal situation to make your major league debut, but whatever. However, why didn’t Iglesias come in later once Rainey got into trouble? That’s the part that I don’t understand. Once he he loaded the bases, go to your best guy.

    I’ve come to grips that I will never understand the decision making of Bryan Price. Just idiotic at times.

    • I turned it off in the 8th. Was Iglesias even up? And if not , why not? I would rather see Dixon or Blandino coming off the bench than Gosselin and Pennington. This team is so half ass backwards.

  31. Looks like Price has settled on a 3-man rotation at 3B while Suarez is on the DL with Gosselin getting his turn in the rotation tonight. Ervin in RF replacing Duvall in the lineup with Winker moving to LF and leading off.

    • 1 step forward, one back. Blandino should be starting every game. Oh, well, we’ve got Gosselton for that.

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About Steve Mancuso

Steve grew up in Cincinnati as a die-hard fan of Sparky's Big Red Machine. After 25 years living outside of Ohio, mostly in Ann Arbor, he returned to the Queen City in 2004. He has resumed a first-person love affair with the Cincinnati Reds and is a season ticket holder at Great American Ball Park. The only place to find Steve's thoughts of more than 140 characters is Redleg Nation. Follow his tweets @spmancuso.

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