The Short Version: No offense. Horrible defense. Swept by a team who actually tried to improve their roster in the off-season. I tire of this.

Final R H E
Milwaukee Brewers (19-13) 3 12 1
Cincinnati Reds (7-24) 1 4 3
W: Miley (1-0) L: Castillo (1-4) S: Jeffress (2)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score

The Good
–Welcome back, Luis Castillo. Mere days after I opined in print that Castillo was going to be fine — or better — the big right-hander turned in his best outing of the young season thus far. Castillo pitched six innings, allowing two runs on nine hits, with seven strikeouts and just one walk. That walk actually came to start the seventh inning, after which manager Jim Riggleman replaced Castillo with Amir Garrett.

At times, he looked like the dominant Castillo of last season. At times, he struggled with command. But in the end, Castillo pitched into the seventh inning, and we finally got a glimpse of the guy we were expecting this season.

–Garrett entered with a runner on and no outs…and proceeded to do what Amir Garrett does: 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts.

–Alex Blandino had a single and two walks.

–Forget what he does offensively — and he walked twice tonight, scoring one run — but Eugenio Suarez made at least two gorgeous defensive plays tonight. Also: don’t forget what Suarez does offensively. I was kidding about that. (Also, I wrote this paragraph before he committed an error. I’ll note that below. He still made a couple of good plays!)

The Bad
–One run. Four hits. Three errors. That’s your summary for tonight’s game, and for the 2018 season as a whole.

–Adam Duvall was 0 for 4 again tonight, and he’s now “hitting” .163/.248/.356 on the season. With the Reds down 3-1 in the bottom of the eighth, Duvall came to the plate with Suarez on base, representing the tying run. He popped out harmlessly.

Just a brutal start to 2018 for the former All-Star.

–Jose Peraza, Blandino, and Suarez made throwing errors (though Peraza later made a nice bare-handed play at shortstop).

Not-So-Random Thoughts
–The Reds were swept, and they are now 7-24 on the season. Seven. And. Twenty-four. I tire of this.

–It’s difficult not to notice that the Reds were swept tonight by a team that actually tried to improve its roster in the off-season. Christian Yelich — the one player I wanted the Reds to acquire — had a double and a homer for the bad guys tonight. This does not make the losing easier to stomach.

–Glad to see some semblance of the old Luis Castillo tonight.

–At some point, we’re going to see Jesse Winker and Scott Schebler as the corner outfielders every night, right? Right?

–Down 1-0 in the bottom of the fourth, the Reds actually got on the board, if you can believe it. Suarez walked to lead off the frame, and one Duvall strikeout later, Devin Mesoraco doubled to deep center to knot the game briefly at 1-1.

–Twice tonight, Reds hitters hammered balls right back at the Milwaukee pitcher (Jennings and Jeffress), only to have the pitcher deflect the ball or get a glove on it. Both Peraza and Scooter Gennett were victimized on balls that should have been singles up the middle. That’s baseball.

–No, the starting rotation isn’t pitching deeply into games on most days. But I’m content that, at the very least, it’s the young guys who are getting these starts. There are going to be better days for the group, as a whole. Tonight was a tiny preview of that, hopefully.

Today’s Tweets

Blame Chad for creating this mess.

Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.

You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

Join the conversation! 36 Comments

  1. Hate to say this but I’m tired of wasting these beautiful evenings sitting indoors watching this garbage. Such a waste of time and effort

    Reply
  2. These are hard times to be a Reds fan.

    Reply
  3. Whew. 7 – 24. Nothing more need be said.

    Reply
  4. One of the main reasons for this debacle is the poor return on recent past trades. The players received back for Chapman, Frasier, Bruce, Cueto and Leake have had almost zero impact in the organization. Aditionally, other players were lost without no return at all (Cozart & Philips) and FO has not been able to develop their replacements.

    Reply
    • The comment I made below was supposed to be with this post. It’s getting ridiculous when the Braves are leading their division (over the Nationals and Mets) and the Phillies have a winning record also.

      Correct me if I’m wrong, but the Reds don’t have starting pitching depth at AAA right now, do they? Other than the injured Lorenzen and DeSclafani, are the only other “noteworthy” starting pitchers in Louisville Stephenson and Reed?!? And for position players, the only one they have is Senzel? I don’t know if there’s anything more alarming about this rebuild than that fact right there. Aside from Senzel, the Reds have no one notable close to being called up to the major league roster, aside from perhaps bullpen or bench players.

      Reply
    • Agree in general, but you need to take Frazier off that list. Schebler and Peraza are both in the starting lineup and raking right now. (Well, Schebler is SUPPOSED to be in the starting lineup….)

      Reply
    • EXACTLY. And, the same front office including the owner’s exalted advisor Sir Walter is still in place. And BC proclaims they will find out what is going on. What a circus.

      Reply
  5. The Mother of All Titanic Struggles this weekend….

    Miami Marlins (11-19)
    at
    Cincinnati Reds (7-24)

    4.5 games behind a team expecting and wanting to have the worst record in MLB in 2018.

    Reply
  6. Blandino on base 3 more times tonight. I’m not sure just where they might fit him in over a longer haul; but, if this keeps up, they might start looking for somewhere/ some way

    Reply
    • Does anyone here know if he could play CF?

      Reply
      • Or maybe SS with Peraza to CF? Somebody tweeted @johnfayman about this earlier in the evening. Fay Said Blandino played SS in college NCAA D1 Stanford; but the Reds seemed to like him at 2B or SS.

        Reply
        • That would be a possible move, certainly Peraza has the wheels to manage CF, his hitting is improving, yet to be seen his arm/location. Otherwise, a line-up of Winker LF, Sensel 2B, Votto 1B, Suarez 3B, Schebler RF, Peraza CF, Tucker C & Blandino 2B would look much better. Next step is to fix the rotation (?).

          Reply
          • Correction: Blandino SS

          • His arm at shortstop is alarming, though that might not be true in center. We’re a mercurial bunch: Only a few weeks ago most of us were running Peraza down like a dog.

          • Charlie the avatar dog says howlllll to this

        • If I recall, Peraza in the OF last year wasn’t such a good thing. CF even at GABP requires a bit more skill than that. I’d hate to have him “learn” at the MLB level given the true CF talent we have coming up through the ranks.

          Reply
  7. All because the Reds waited too long to begin the rebuild. Because Castellini apparently wanted to wait until after the All-Star Game. The Reds have absolutely nothing to show for Chapman, Cueto, Bruce, Phillips, or Cozart. The return for Leake was two good half-seasons from Duvall, and a decent pitching prospect in Mella. For Frazier, the Reds still might come out on top if Schebler or Peraza remain as everyday players.

    Granted, all of these players except Chapman have been mediocre or worse since leaving the Reds. Cueto had one good season, was injured much of last year, and now is rumored to possibly need Tommy John surgery. If the Reds had not held onto them for too long, they certainly would have gotten a greater return. More importantly, if the Reds had tried to get the best available prospects, instead of those closest to major league ready, the Reds would certainly be in a better position right now.

    Reply
    • Cueto had a great first half 2015 b4 the trade to KC. While his regular season second half wasn’t good during the adjustment period, his performance in the playoffs played a huge part in getting the Royals rings.

      He was GREAT – top ten in the NL again – in 2016 and had the bullpen for the Giants held up, he & MadBum would have pitched the Giants on to even greater even year playoff glory.

      Last year was riddled with injury. This year he is exhibiting Cy Young form again.
      He has hardly been mediocre.

      Jay Bruce has continued being JB while moderating his extremely streaky performance as a Red. Had Encarnacion not been injured during the Yankee series I’m confident Bruce would have played a part in the Indians winning 2017.

      Otherwise…..in agreement with the rest. The Reds have definitely botched the trades of their best assets, harming the rebuild for years.

      Reply
  8. How’d they win 7?

    It’s a miracle!

    Reply
  9. It just goes to show, believe in yourself and fortunes will follow

    Reply
  10. Castillo was even better than the line indicates. Couple of those ‘hits’ that led to the first run were due to poor fielding by Joey Votto. No range on the second ‘hit’ of the inning, and the ‘hit’ that directly led to the first run bounced into and out of his glove, a play easily made by Hosmer or Freddie Freeman.

    Reds had no luck offensively with Votto hitting the ball sharply to a well placed outfielder to end an inning with a couple runners on base and Winker almost tied the game but his liner held up for the CF to catch.

    Reply
    • If Votto had even gotten in front of the ball, the run wouldn’t have scored. Plenty of calumny to go around. I wasn’t as happy with Castillo’s performance as some, though it was a clear improvement. A lot of screamers hit by the Brewers.

      Reply
    • Yes… plenty of IF hits or hits that shouldn’t have been allowed to leave the IF!

      Reply
  11. If the Braves series was Rebuild 101, Milwaukee is Rebuild 201.

    Reply
    • And it all started with Mark Attanosio, Brewers majority owner, getting his version of Walt to retire and then hiring a young, analytic mind from outside the organization. Heaven forbid.

      Reply
  12. The way management thinks they found a place for Blandino, the bench. HE may play 1 game this weekend.

    Reply
  13. I am back to just seeing what the young starters do each night.Offense is pitiful and will remain that way until the holes are filled.No need to trade now just try the young guys as much as possible.Blandino and Hererra along with Ervin and at some point Senzel should get to play a lot.We know about Billy and he is out of the mix as a starter,Duvall gets 100 more at bats and then he is out if he doesn’t improve.Blandino platoons with Scooter and plays 3 out of 7 games,Herrera plays in center when Duvall sets

    Reply
    • Last night the offense was pitiful, but lately it has shown signs of life. The defense was pitiful last night and hasn’t been particularly good all year. This doesn’t help the pitchers at all. BH is hitting better than Duvall and has recently raised his average something like 20 points, though I agree that he’d have to do quite a bit better to merit being the regular starter, but why do you suppose Herrera should be the starting centerfielder? His first MLB hit?

      Reply
  14. The Reds need to just stop playing Duvall, or send him to AAA to get sorted out. He is slashing .163/.248/.356 (and getting picked off second, having lucked out on review not to have been picked off at first).

    To make things worse, as bad as Duvall’s slash line is for the middle of the order, Votto’s slash line against LH pitching so far is a sub-Duvallian.156/.289/.250. I would suggest resting Votto against tougher lefties, but they don’t have any RH hitters to play first base. Given what we’ve seen lately, though, a can of soup would not be a defensive downgrade at first. Maybe Mesoraco could get a few games in at first against lefties.

    The Reds are particularly vulnerable to LH pitching. Winker, Schebler, Votto and Gennett are LH-hitting regulars, Hamilton and Barnhart are both better against RHs, and Duvall as their RH power guy can’t hit slow-pitch softball. As a result, they make all too many ordinary lefties look like Steve Carlton or Lefty Grove. (They also make too many ordinary righties look like Bob Gibson or Walter Johnson.)

    Stop playing Duvall. Demote him, or DFA him. He is not going to become good. Try Blandino in the outfield, or Senzel, or Rosell Herrera, or all the above. Platoon Gennett with Blandino. Let Mesoraco play some first base against LHs. Quit accepting lousy performances.

    Reply
  15. As this lost season plays out, I want to see the corner outfield stabilized with Winker in left and Schebler in right. Centerfield is a major problem for the Reds. As long as Hamilton is a starter, the offense will sputter with Billy and the pitcher at the bottom of the order. I think Blandino, Herrera and Gennett should be given a try in centerfield. Once Senzel comes up he should be at second with Suarez, Peraza and Votto in the infield. The Reds are in a good position with Barnhart/Mesoraco catching. The young core of the starting pitching should be Castillo, Mahle and Garrett with a good pitcher acquired in the offseason and the fifth starter to be determined. Enough with the rebuild, it’s time for the Reds to be respectable.

    Reply
  16. Hey, the good news is – I can, pretty much, guarantee we won’t lose today (though, I’m not throwing down any gauntlets here… if any team could figure out a way to lose on a day off, this one can).

    Reply
  17. The Reds team pitching WAR is up to -0.8. Maybe a good series with the Marlins can get it closer to 0.0

    The Reds organization to fix all this is
    Senzel, improvement from Schebler and Winker, and…..
    No depth at Starting Pitching, but, that can be improved with smart decisions in Free Agency to surround the young starters, which will need to show significant improvement.

    Reply
  18. When will the front office show the fans that they have a pulse?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

About Chad Dotson

Blame Chad for creating this mess. Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, "The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds" is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad's musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine. You can email Chad at chaddotson@redlegnation.com.

Category

2018 Reds, Titanic Struggle Recap

Tags

, , , , , , , , , ,