Too many not-ready-for-prime-time rookies.

St. Louis Cardinals 13  Cincinnati  Reds 4 || Box Score || Win % || Reds Pitcher Stats 

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! 97 Comments

  1. Tanner Rainey’s 3 ER, 1 IP performance dropped his ERA by four-and-a-half points.

  2. No words, like you said Steve too many rookies….no words.

  3. Is this, “sorting” ?

  4. Tonight’s game was painful,awkward,and just plain old embarrasing. #1=If this is a rebuilding team then why not leave Romano in to try to clean up his own mess and gain experience? #2=Watching your team walk in a run anytime sucks,but when it happens several times by different pitchers it makes you sick.#3=Trade Peraza and Hamilton for anyone with a heartbeat. I would go on with the rest of my list but i am already sick of talking about it.

  5. Been following this team closely for well over 20 years. I think this is the worst things have ever felt to me.

    • I have been following for 57 years. This is far and away the worst this franchise has ever been— ever!
      So much for tearing everything down so we could get better. When is the better part coming???

    • 68 for me,and this is sickening

  6. This is starting to remind me of 1982 when the Reds lost 101.
    Everything is gong wrong.
    UGGH

  7. Too many not-ready-for-prime-time rookies…

    Starting with the GM

    • Great point, Jim.

      As you alluded to the other day, the Williams family involvement in ownership means Dick WIlliams will almost certainly never be fired. Let us hope he has the wisdom or fortitude to break with #RedsWay procedures and get an Assistant GM or similar from a successful MLB organization.

      Twins went from 100 losses to play-in game in part by adding GM Derek Falvey from the Indians (Cleveland has graduated staff to several MLB teams).

      Diamondbacks got to the play-in game by adding GM Mike Hazen from the Red Sox.

      Tonight’s game showed the Reds do not have the talent currently to compete.

      But, the naivety of roster construction and lack of utlizing 10-day DL to maximum advantage and not shuttling guys in from AAA is shocking. Other teams would have certainly had fresh arms for tonight in the bullpen, after last night’s game and finish of stressful road trip.

      Price will not be managing the Reds next season. Dick WIlliams had better grow quickly while he is still here, however, because the spotlight on what is going on with this #rebuild then falls squarely on him.

      • I’ve been thinking the same. DW seems like he is an intelligent guy. His initiatives with applying sports science to baseball and building of an analytics department would seem to indicate neither is he closed minded.
        Right now he could be as shell shocked as his team’s fandom. Hopefully he will land on his feet and reach outside the organization for help.

        Who knows, maybe this is job John Farrell is really auditioning the org for and in turn being auditioned for by DW.

  8. If I’m Votto, I’m giving serious consideration to dropping no-trade rights and going to a centender. I get it’s knee jerk, but you still have three positions – Hamilton, Duvall, Peraza at underperforming or average even when theyre playing well, not to mention numerous pitching issues.

    By the time this team is relevant or close to to chasing a pennant, Votto might not be playing anymore. Hope I’m wrong, but this team is going well past the competitive window management promised

    • The problem with that is that Votto has become a slower, poor man’s version of Matty Alou. Who wants to pay Matty Alou $150 million over the next 6 years?

  9. Bringing Winning Baseball Back To Cincinnati courtesy of the Castellini and Williams families.
    So sad.
    The Reds are going to be the only MLB team come April 30 that does not have double digit numbers in the win column.
    They are the first MLB team to double digit losses.
    The Rebuild was built on a lie. No wonder it has crashed and burned at a remarkable speed. Just a pile of rubble now. It is going to get worse before it gets better. May’s schedule is tougher than April.
    Thank you Castellinis.
    Thank you Williamses.
    While the Reds owners have more than tripled their worth in the Reds franchise and since they bought the team in 2006, this is what they have given Cincinnati fans, working on their 8th losing season out of 11.

    • “We will build one of the most respected organizations in baseball. As partners in other successful baseball organizations we know how it’s done. We will build a winning management team by putting the right people in the right positions with the right resources to win. We will foster a winning attitude and culture.”~Robert H. Castellini, W. Joseph Williams, Jr., Thomas Williams

  10. The famous line from the movie Broadcast News says it best.
    “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore.”

    Welcome to the island of misfit toys!

    • On a night of errors: that line is from Network. Agree with the sentiment, though. The fan base will continue to erode at a faster pace.

  11. Perazas hitting .340 this month….with 3 doubles. That’s encouraging at least.

    • I agree, but…

      that doesn’t matter to fans on this site – he’s no good, swings like a girl, has no talent, looks lost, has no clue (all terms used by a host of on-line GMs). He might continue to get better and end up being a solid player, but the stat lines from the past 10 days (&/or 2017 take your statistical window of preference) have cast him into the dump heap of “no good”.

      Players don’t change, adapt, improve (especially young guys) – they only do what they have quantitatively have done in the past. They’re either as good as Zach Cozart from day 1 or they are worthless and show that the rebuild is indeed a failure. Funny, even Zach Cozart wasn’t that good from his day 1 – but 2017 was an outlier as Zach will certainly come back to his statistical norm any day now.

      • Peraza does have room for improvement, but, what is his ceiling? Is Peraza a potential difference maker at SS for a MLB team? A solid player is not going to get the Reds competitive

  12. The reds got nothing for any of their core players. All the good prospects are through the draft. Unforunately, that’s enough for a Asros or cubs style rebuild. This is not a multiple world series core they have anywhere in the system. They were dipping their toes into the rebuild and its going to cost them.

  13. Wow – who’d a thunk if you took a last place team – take away one of their best offensive/defensive guys and replace them with less than average talent in both offense and defense – and then – pretty much – trot out the worst pitching staff in the game from last year – that the team wouldn’t get better!!? It’s a puzzler alright.

  14. do you think if fans actually showed up to the games, boo like mad, wear paper bags on their head. throw crap onto the field, yell cuss, loot. then maybe things will change?

    • Yeah the jail would have less room in Hamilton County and the city would be a better place until those idiots were released

    • Absolutely Jreis; the fans ran Joe Morgan out of town. Remember?

  15. Perhaps, a managerial change soon … like ARodgers said “RELAX” … season still early, give another 8-10 more games?

  16. I found a place for Pennington! He’s only our 11th worst pitcher! He comes up 12 on this list, but that is because Weiss has yet to record an out in order to calculate an ERA over 27 outs (rough start). No denominator equals no average equals no ERA, lol.

    http://m.reds.mlb.com/stats/?season=2018&stat_type=pitching&game_type=R&sort_column=&player_pool=ALL

    • I believe we are living “Animal House” revisited here. As Dean Wormer would say, “Mister Pennington! ERA of…NINE-POINT-ZERO. Congratulations…you’re at the top of the Reds’ pitching fraternity pledge class! Now, then…Mister…uh, Mister Weiss. INFINITY!! INFINITY!!! ALL OUTINGS INCOMPLETE!! You and your fraternity brothers have posted the worst numbers on the entire baseball campus. Now, then…what organization leadership would have such outstanding performers represent and join their esteemed organization. Mister Williams…Mister Price…what have you to say for yourselves??? Wellllll…….OUT WITH IT!!”

  17. I feel like we are rebuilding using sub standard parts.

  18. “We just aren’t going to lose any more.” – Bob Castellini in 2008

  19. Price firing. Is the watch on yet.

    • The ‘watch’ for Reds fans are the nine games coming up with the Cards and Brewers. The organization can take only so much embarrassment without change, even if it is only change for changes sake.

  20. I watched the opening inning and saw that Romano was a nibbler, and turned if off. Not only is it no fun for viewers to watch pitchers who do not believe in their stuff, but fielders behind them have to be swearing a blue streak to themselves.

  21. Where is our Jose Martinez and DeJong? Nobody ever heard of either one of them 2 years ago. That laser HR Martinez hit could’ve killed someone. That was Stanton type exit velocity! Then their SS hits a 470 ft HR. Crazy. Then throw in 5 straight walks, etc, etc.

    Our young guys are supposed to come out with a winning attitude, but they’re totally outmanned across the board and they know it. Romano has given up 2 runs in the 1st every start? Price will get fired but there are no answers on this roster. Everyone wanted Gallardo gone, but these kids that pitched last night are about as ready for the big leagues as I am.

  22. Well this is what happens when you play the boys. Either get beat by a run or 2 or 3 with the likes of Gosselin and Pennington and Feldman or whatever other washed up vet the Reds have been putting out there the last few years OR throw the young bucks in the fire and get beat by 10. Pick your poison. An L is an L. I guess I just as soon let the youngins go out there and learn their lessons the hard way.

  23. This is Dick Williams roster. He made no appreciable moves this off-season except to let Cozart walk w/o any compensation. Ervin looks as lost in the outfield as Winker does. He should have been charges with 2 errors. If you’re a competent ML manager, you look at this organization & say “Thanks, but no thanks”.

    • I doubt there are any unemployed ML managers or employed ML coaches who would not be interested in the Reds manager’s job depending on the contract. After all, there are only thirty of them.

  24. I had irrational hopes 2 weeks ago.

    But this team has a chance to be 1962 Mets bad. The franchise savior, Senzel, is hitting .207 in AAA; no other position player is even close. Votto’s OPS is lower than that of Pennington, Peraza and Gosselin (and even Tyler Mahle). Votto and Winker have a combined Zero Point Zero Zero extra base hits. Duvall woke up on April 1 and forgot how to play baseball.

    Billy Hamilton has 3 times more walks than Joey Votto. Let that sink in.

    Ervin can’t field, or hustle, and needs to be DFAed. Gennett throws like Chuck Knobloch. Winker is a DH in real life, especially if you want Dave Magadan as your DH.

    And that pitching! Romano should be in AAA; Castillo can’t keep the ball in the park; and Amir Garrett is being wasted in the bullpen. Homer just wants to be traded.

    Their only trade chips are Iglesias and . . . [I’m thinking . . . ] Bailey would be a salary dump, and Hamilton might bring back a B prospect. Maybe Mesoraco, if they would ever play him, could improve enough to allow them to dump some salary at the trade deadline.

    It’s going to get worse-a whole lot worse-before it gets better. They will be lucky to be over .500 by 2021.

  25. At least they got Votto a day off for a home game in April so he’ll be fresher when they’re 80 games behind in August. That’s what the smart teams do.

  26. Price just handed the keys to his starting rotation except for Mahle who deserved a opportunity to start and some how Price forgot and being a pitching coach he should had recognized that Garrett was hurt last year but before he was hurt that he was the talk of the town and now it seems there is some type of problem between himself and Garrett that he just doesn’t want to give Garrett an opportunity to start and goes with of all people Cody Reed and did any one notice Reeds demeanor coming into the game and during his short stint? And if Price does give Garrett an opportunity it may be to late because he has already adapted to being in the bullpen.

  27. Remember Casey, “does anybody here know how to play the game”?

  28. Do you just tell Price… look, we can fire you now, or you can know that it’s over at the end of the season.. but in the meantime, don’t manage for your job, you don’t really have one, just get people innings and take the lumps.

    • Maybe he had already figured out during spring training that he had been cast as Moses and wasn’t going to see 2019 and that explains some of the goings on and apparent roster wide apathy.

  29. Dick WIlliams is the main culprit here. Its that simple. Replace Price with Sparky Anderson in his prime and they might lose 88 instead of 94. Or 98 instead of the 103 they’re losing this year. They simply don’t have enough talent!

    The Cards found the DeJong at perennial baseball power Illinois State:) He’s 24 and has legit 25 HR power! Jose Martinez will be 30 in July….where did he come from? I’m sure major league pitchers will cool him off somewhat but 1.056 ops (.442 obp). Eric Thames has 5 HRs and they haven’t even played the Reds yet. Milw found him in Korea. Sure…the Reds are dealing with financial handicaps, but it doesn’t change the fact that DW is inadequate at his job. Every bit as much as Price if not more so. Not to mention our young guys come up and have nothing close to decent secondary pitches. Romano is in the same boat pretty much…throws 75% fastballs. Other teams have young guys that actually know how to pitch. To change speeds and set hitters up. Complete failure from top to bottom.

  30. Anyone expecting a good team this year was setting themselves up for disappointment. Most everyone would agree that last years team was good offensively and defensively, but had horrible pitching. Nothing was going to change until the pitching staff was at least average

    Last year should have been about sorting out the rotation, but of course injuries ruined that plan. That meant 2018 would now be the year to figure out the rotation and simply replacing Hamilton, Perazza, or whoever isn’t hitting at the moment wasn’t going to lead to an improved team. Once again due to injuries the rotation is basically comprised of four rookies, some of which are probably not ready for the ML level. To make matters worse the second best offensive player and above average defender at SS is no longer on the team; his replacement below average in both categories. The only offensive addition to the team is a rookie with good OBP skills and questionable defense and power to replace one of your slightly above average corner OF. Then take away the next best player to injury, Suarez. Remove your best power bat, Schebler. Then Duvall is hitting .100 and your MVP caliber player is hitting like a backup infielder.

    After all this you are looking at the 2017 team with downgraded offense and defense. If the team can come up with four reliable starters, figure out where Senzel plays, and get guys back from injury then it will be a success. After that the Reds can fire people, trade excess pieces at the deadline, and sign free agents this winter

    • This is a great post. This was pointed out prior to the season as well. The Reds offense was average last year, which included a wRC+ of 165 and 141 for Votto and Cozart. Gennett had a huge outlier season that is likely to to be replicated.

      Winker only is not enough to pick up for the loss in offense. Votto certainly needs to improve, but, it shows what a team can look like when it is not carried by a very high wRC+ player.

      The Reds cannot compete in this division with Hamilton, Peraza, Duvall, Gennett, and possibly Schebler. Winker will be an asset if he gets on base over 40% of the time.

      The answer to all these questions will not be answered by Senzel, who is the only legit hitting prospect.

      Planning on 3 injured starters does not seem like much of a plan either.

  31. Among many things this organization lacks or has failed at, two things stand out to me: 1.- Inefficiency to develop pitching and 2.) The lack of fundamentals.

    They have drafted very good arms (I think Buckley is the only guy that deserves to keep his job in the FO) since Homer all the way up to Hunter Greene. However, only Cueto has fulfilled or surpassed expectations. Not even Bailey met them and now we see big arms like Stephenson, Cody Reed, Romano, Nick Howard, etc. not being able to find consistency. And I’m not even talking about the special cases of Chapman, Iglesias and now Garrett. But last night, it was pitiful to watch how unprepared these kids are.

    On the other hand, is amazing how flawed these guys are, even the veterans. They cannot bunt or put a succesful hit and run down, run the bases properly. Two nights ago while Peraza was grilled at home by yet another horrible call by our 3B Coach, Votto stayed at 1b, not even trying to make it to 2b to help the runner. In that same game it was evident that they didn´t had the slightest idea how to play with the 6 infielders in. It was mentioned by the broadcasters.

    So before we blame Hamilton leading off -he shouldn’t- Peraza or even Price’s terrible in-game decisions, this team needs to be revamped from top to bottom in the way they develop their players.

    • I agree 100%, and I swear my ramblings below weren’t plagiarized. You expressed a lot of what I’m thinking better than I did, while I was composing my comment 🙂

    • Also in full agreement. I’ve been trying to point out the same concerns for, what, nearly two full seasons now.

      (1) I constantly notice how the pitchers we’ve brought in from the Latin space all seem to have multiple pitches, multiple arm slots, good deception and judgement while domestic pitchers of the same age and experience are all two pitch throwers. This seems to be the case across MLB, yes, but our case seems to be much more pronounced.

      (2) or, phrased simply, ” Why Billy -Still- Can’t Bunt” as the exemplar. After three seasons, if anything, this skill seems to have regressed. Team base running also……..

      So: +1

  32. Last place is here.
    Historically awful April is now firmly in view.
    The SP needs to keep starting. Romano doesn’t have movement and his ball is flat and hittable. He needs to adjust. That’s part of the deal. Mahle gets another opportunity. Let’s see if he can get through the lineup twice. They all need 8-10 starts before you change anything. Homer Bailey is looking very promising.

    The bullpen is a dumpster fire .Is Tyler Holt available? He and Pennington come out throwing strikes? Where’s Ariel.Hernadez? Throwing 100 mph a year but ineffective and still in AA. The reds are struggling to graduate bullpen guys from their farm system. Petalta and Lorenzen looked great a year ago but where is the next 1 or 2?

    Offense is horrible and dependent on Joey Votto playing at an MVP level. Hamilton has some confidence back and I want to see more of him in the 9 hole in CF and Winker in LF leading off. This is the problem with Adam Duvall. If he’s Not hitting home runs and doubles… He gives you nothing offensively.

  33. 1) Organizationally, I have two big concerns. A) We’re not developing our pitching talent–Castillo came over from the Marlins pretty much as he is now–and failure to progress our pitching will doom us. I don’t know why we have so many guys who are lacking a second pitch, lacking command, lacking the ability to avoid 0-2 mistakes, etc., but it’s an obvious pattern that our guys aren’t developing. B) The decision making doesn’t appear to be driven by a well thought out plan. Three non-roster invitées (plus Gallardo) on the roster; DFA a Rule 5 guy you spent all last year protecting; put Garrett in the bullpen; let Peraza rot on the bench last year; (probably) rush Senzel to the big leagues.

    2) Price is playing a bad hand poorly, and he obviously needs to go. Hamilton leading off vs LHP; misusing Garrett (who is already being misused as a reliever); intentionally walking the bases loaded in a tight game with a young pitcher with known control issues on the mound in his big league debut; failing to even attempt obvious platoon opportunities; and many more. He’s also been unlucky, dreadfully unlucky. The particular injuries, and their timing; playing tight enough games that he never gets a chance to use Weiss until the poor kid is nothing but rust and nerves and yet he’s forced to bring him into a close game; multiple players off to a cold start; opposing outfielders robbing homeruns with their eyes closed; practically every miscue pounced on by the opposition; the schedule. The poor guy is not making his own luck, and the baseball gods aren’t giving him any either.

    So, they’ll replace Price soon. But the organizational issues ultimately worry me more, because firing Price won’t fix them and failing to fix them will leave us adrift for many years to come.

  34. I could be wrong but the reason Garrett isn’t starting is because of Finnegan. Once he’s called up, Reed will be sent down. They don’t want to start Garrett then have to move him back to the bullpen. That’s my two cents. Not that it really matters at this point. Getting a new Manager is more important to me.

    • There’s still a pretty good chance that any or all of the following could develop into effective starting pitchers. All of them should be starting in Cincinnati or Louisville, because 1) we need to know who will make it, for next season and beyond; 2) the composition of the ML bullpen shouldn’t be driving any of the decisions.

      Castillo, Mahle, Finnegan, Reed, Garrett, Stephenson, Romano. Mix and match however you’d like about who pitches where through the season, but they should all start. This isn’t rocket science, and the fact the Reds can’t seem to figure it out is concerning.

  35. Anyone still think this team will win 81 games?

    • If anyone thought that on Opening day then they were just being an unrealistic homer. 5 pitchers on the DL with one of them being Disco put that to rest….although Disco wasn’t saving this team either.

    • Those chances were significantly lowered when they lost Disco and Finnegan. When Suarez broke his thumb it lowered significantly again. Unless three of the young SP turn into rookie of the year candidates the Reds are sub .500 this year

      • Losing Finnegan substantially lowered the chances?

        • Yes losing both Finnegan and Disco significantly lowered the chances of playing .500 baseball. He Finnegan pitched 172 innings in 2016 with a 2.2 WAR or if you prefer traditional stats, he had a 3.98 ERA compared to the league average of 4.19, so you had a 23 year old performing at an acceptable level. That performance is much better than what any of the alternatives have provided. If you don’t like Finnegan that is fine, just say I don’t like Finnegan, but losing a starting pitcher in a staff that already had question marks does lower the chances of winning

  36. Since 1963 the lowest average number of wins per season during a principal owner’s tenure as been 67, from 1981-1983. James and William Williams were the principals. The lowest average number of wins during a GM’s tenure is 68, from 2016 to 2017…Dick Williams.

    • This period is worse than 1981-3 because the Reds had a strike shortened season in 1981. They won 66 games and had the best record in baseball I believe. The next two seasons were awful. So without the strike the Reds would have won more games on average.

      • You’re correct. Their winning percentage was .611 (66-42), extrapolated over 162 games they would have won 99 and the Williams’ average wins would be 78 (2nd worse since 1963). If they won 90 games over 162 they would have averaged 75 wins (still 2nd worse). If they ended with 88 wins they would have the worst number of wins of any principal owner since 1963.

  37. Baseball is hard. Look at Michael Wacha last night. 17-7 with a 3.38 era in 2015 and just can’t seem to find it again. He’s still throwing 95-96 and changes speeds. Its not just the Reds guys….its just mostly our guys:(

    I’m not too thrilled with Romano, but give him another 3-4 starts and see what happens? They have Stephenson at Lville. They picked up lefty Justin Nicolino as well. He’s only 26 and has a 2.98 career era in the minors. That’s pretty strong! Typical soft-tossing lefty but they’re usually forced to have good control and we have little of that currently. I saw a few comparisons to Mark Buerhle. I’ve always thought Lorenzen had potential and a higher ceiling then a guy like Romano. Finnegan will be back shortly as well. They need some of these guys to really get it together or its time to blow it up and rebuild the rebuild.

    Maybe they try to find an American league version of Wacha? Or Jose Urena with the Marlins? Somebody young with a live arm that needs a fresh start. Reds fans need a fresh start! Clean house with the entire organization!

  38. I just quickly read through this entire thread and didn’t see Walt Jocketty’s name one time (could have missed it). Why does the blame for this extended “rebuild” not start, and at this point, end with him? He is the architect of this roster and (lack of?) minor league drafting/development that should have produced better players to be ready to replace the aging “stars” that left. Yeah, blame Price if you want and blame Williams if you like, but they weren’t exactly dealt a hand that anyone could win with so how can we as the fanbase evaluate them fairly? By putting the entire blame on them is kind of like saying Bruce Bochy sucks as a manager because the Giants finished last in 2017, even though he’s won multiple rings……did he forget how to manage effectively? No, his roster sucked. See, Redlegs (2015-current.)

    I am still hopeful for 2018 that some of this youth works out, health returns for Disco/Finnegan/Suarez/etal, before I fully blame Price. Yes, he makes weird/illogical decisions, but I do think he deserves some credit for his willingness to move Hamilton down, Winkler up, Iggy for multiple innings, etc. (All things that Dusty wouldn’t have done.) I think Williams deserves a couple more years to see what he can do with his drafted players, free agents, etc. As ugly as it’s been, I would rather it be Rainey/Weiss/Romano/Reed than Bronson/Marquis/Adleman/etc. So, if it’s his strategy to sink/swim with youth in 2018 to sort it out, I’m behind him.

    Regardless, it’s never as good at it seems and (I’m hoping) it’s never as bad as it seems.

    • Flash!

      In an attempt to bring winning baseball back to Cincinnati, the management of the Cincinnati Reds announce that, effective immediately, Walt Jocketty has been brought out of semi-retirement to replace Bryan Price as the team’s field manager……..

      There, fixed that for you…..

      JOKE! That was just a JOKE! Really…………..

  39. Can we ever expect a full season from Disco or Finnegan? I agree about fundamentals, but most kids learn those in Little League. It does seem like it could be coaching at all levels is lacking.

  40. Have been a Reds fan since 1957. So far, this appears to be the worst squad I have ever seen. I get that all teams in all sports go thru “dry spells”, but this is a total drought. No improvement whatsoever in the last few years. In fact, it appears to me to be just the opposite. They are getting worse. This is an organization in complete disarray from ownership, front office, field management right on down to the players on the field. I can’t even watch these games anymore as it just makes me sad and mad! It’s about time to start from scratch. At least Marge occasionally had some people who were smart.

    • I’ve been a Reds fan even longer than you and this Reds team is far from the worst I’ve seen or followed. It has a lot of talent, especially pitching, that is still in the maturing stage. I look forward to having both Senzel and Suarez in the lineup with Blandino at second. It’s past time, where possible, to play the young guys. Trading Gennett to an AL club, as a DH, might bring the Reds a solid relief pitcher which is needed. Peraza, who is an erratic hitter, could workout as a super sub. Winker is in the lineup, and sometimes leading off, which is a positive, and Hamilton lower in the batting order looks good to me until the composition of the outfield is worked out. The bottom line, as I’ve stated before, is that managerial change is needed to give this young team a new perspective.

  41. The game last night isn’t that complicated to assess and it really isn’t a big statement about the rebuild.

    The Reds were ahead 4-3 half-way through the game. The 24-year-old starting pitcher who hasn’t even pitched in 20 major league games had to be pulled in the 5th. The bullpen guys who gave up the runs were in their FIRST and SECOND big league appearances. Austin Brice is essentially a rookie. Those guys are pitching because the bullpen is short 3-4 arms due to injuries. The bullpen with Lorenzen, Hernandez and Shackelford is a lot different. Reed and Garrett pitched fine. If DeSclafani was healthy, that would be another available arm for the bullpen.

    Meanwhile, the Reds were starting rookies in left field, right field and third base. Two of those three were because of injuries to Schebler and Suarez.

    The Reds are bad now because they are playing an unprecedented number of rookies, most of whom have been rushed up to fill spots. No, the organization isn’t as deep as the Cardinals and it has plenty of flaws. But at least recognize that the poor start to the season is largely due to injuries.

    • Except Lorenzen was shaky last year. Shackelford is ok but nothing special. Hernandez has been hit-n-miss and is 32-33 years old I think? They knew Disco and Finnegan were iffy healthwise and did nothing. They knew the offense wouldn’t be as good without Cozart and did nothing. Dick Williams did nothing to improve this team. Instead they made a video for Ohtani for the 0.0000 chance that he was coming to Cincy.

      Reds players run the bases like they’ve been drinking with Andre the Giant (great documentary on HBO by the way). Price has proven once again that he’s incapable of learning anything. Other teams pitch young & inexperienced guys too….and they can actually throw breaking balls and don’t finish 29-30th in era…year after year after year! Losing Suarez and Schebler hurts but this is another 90 loss team if they were mostly healthy.

    • agreed

    • Well, yes and no.

      In the immediate moment, yes, because I agree with you that, ultimately, youth must have its day and the only way it can improve is to play … and learn from the flubs and fluffs along the way.

      From a more distant viewpoint, no, because, as posted above, I’m not seeing consistent development of the skills these guys should have had better development of before stepping on to the diamond last night. And I’m uncertain about the level of coaching and development they are getting at this level. Either way, it’s going to take a longer period before some of these questions get resolved. (I mean, the season isn’t even 10% over and the club has shown that it can run protracted periods at .500 ball – this year and last.)

      And, finally, there -is- that old demon Fortune. We seem injury prone and, this season, the weather and the Lords of Scheduling have dealt us a stretch of unbelievably poor game conditions prior to last night. Whoever had the notion that the regular season should start in March needs a critical examination.

      • er, obvious correction. .500 ball last year and the year before that. Certainly not at any point so far this year……..

    • “But at least recognize that the poor start to the season is largely due to injuries.”

      Every team has injuries. It is how teams’ front offices deal with those injuries and how teams set up their depth. The Reds front office has been extremely woeful in both departments. Look at teams that have had a similar amount of injuries as the Reds have had since the beginning of the 2017 season through today.
      New York Mets.
      Boston Red Sox.
      LA Angels.
      Cleveland Indians.
      Arizona Diamondbacks.
      Each of these teams has had several members go down with injury. Those teams have real front offices and those teams built up some depth. They don’t sign the Cliff Penningtons, the Phil Gosselins, the Yovani Gallardos, the Kevin Quackenbushes of the baseball world to be their depth. And all 5 teams did not choose to stand pat on their rosters, they went out and made improvements. That is something the Reds did not do, by choice by the front office.
      And by the way, those 5 teams also have something else in common, they are currently in first place in their respective divisions. The injuries are a distant second in reasons the Reds are so bad.
      The Reds front office’s Plan A for 2018 was to Stand Pat on a last place roster and not seek out improvements.
      Plan B was, ………………………………They don’t have one. They put all their eggs in the Stand Pat basket. An incompetent and bumbling Reds front office is the main reason for where the Reds stand right now. Injuries are but a small part of the equation in this disaster.
      I believe it was Reds GM Dick Williams responsibility to have the Reds ready for the 2018 season. It was his responsibility so that there should have not been 4 or however many rookies were in the game last night, ifWilliams had done his job properly.

  42. The 2012-2018 Reds should be taught in sports management courses. Someone should write a book documenting all the moves that were made to take one of the 2 or 3 best teams in the game, turn them into a last place team in 3 years, and then keep them there for another 3 years while becoming maybe one of the worst teams in the history of the game.

    How anyone associated with this team still has a job is beyond me. At some point MLB should have the ability to take a franchise away from an ownership group for baseball malpractice.

  43. Steve…not trying to argue with you or any Reds fan, but where is our Jose Martinez or DeJong? Ozzie Albies for the Braves is playing today and I looked at his numbers. Just turned 21 in January and has a .833 ops over 271 at-bats with 14 doubles, 6 triples, 10 Hrs, and 9 steals. Hopefully Nick Senzel will be that caliber of player, but they’re just so short of break through players like that? The Reds absolutely can’t miss with Winker, Senzel, and Hunter Greene now…they have nobody else?

    • The Cardinals are a better organization than the Reds. Who would disagree with that? Not me, and I said so in the comment. I’ve written that before. They have a more experienced general manager. They have an ownership that has accepted modern methods as the way forward. They fired Walt Jocketty over it. Then the Reds lived another 6 seasons under Jocketty’s out-of-date thinking. That’s on ownership. I’ve written all this over the years.

      The Cubs are a much better (and wealthier) organization than the Reds. The Brewers probably are now, too.

      I think the front office would point at Luis Castillo, Scott Schebler, Adam Duvall, Scooter Gennett, Anthony DeSclafani and Eugenio Suarez as examples of pieces the Reds have put together in the rebuild. Your list leaves out a few names of minor league players like Taylor Trammell.

      All that said, put Schebler and Suarez in the lineup and it looks a lot different than with Blandino and Ervin. Put Lorenzen, Hernandez and Shackelford in the bullpen instead of Rainey, Quackenbush, Weiss, etc. and these leads don’t get blown.

      The Reds are far from perfect and far from perfectly run, but to not recognize the role injuries have played these two weeks is just willful venting. I mean, you can say over and over again that the Yankees and Red Sox respond better to injuries, but that’s an obviously irrelevant point because of the financial difference.

      • The injuries have killed, no doubt. But that list of players you put together as the pieces of the rebuild says it all. Suarez is the only one I’d say is a real building block for the next good Reds team.

  44. The Reds are 12 games into the season and their run differential is -40. That is criminal. Charges should be filed.

  45. “We will build one of the most respected organizations in baseball. As partners in other successful baseball organizations WE KNOW HOW IT’S DONE. We will build a winning management team by putting the right people in the right positions with the right resources to win. We will foster a winning attitude and culture.”

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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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