Adam Duvall came off the bench and drove a 2-1 fastball into the left field bleachers for a game-winning homer leading off the bottom of the 10th. It was the second win in a row for the Redlegs and their 10th of the season. The victory also gave them a series win over the New York Mets. Lordy, I hope there are tapes. 

New York Reds Mets (18-17) 1 ••• Cincinnati Reds (10-27)

Box Score || Lose % || Reds Pitcher Statcast || Reds Hitter Statcast

Sal Romano’s eighth start of the season was his best. Through six he gave up just one run on four hits. Romano struck out seven Mets while walking just one, on 96 pitches. Romano’s ERA is 3.86, but warning signs are present in his 5.37 FIP and 5.05 xFIP. Today was a solid step in the right direction. 

The bullpen picked up where Romano left off. Jared Hughes (clean 7th), Amir Garrett (1 walk in the 8th) and Raisel Iglesias (clean 9th and 10th). Something to watch going forward: Raisel Iglesias clearly winced and grabbed the forearm of his non-throwing arm twice facing the last batter of the 9th inning. He did return to pitch the 10th. Please, no injuries to Raisel. 

Heading into the 6th, the Reds had managed just two soft hits, ground ball singles by Eugenio Suarez and Alex Blandino. Trailing 1-0, Jesse Winker led off the bottom of the 6th with a walk. Jose Peraza followed with a perfect bunt down the third base line, his league-leading sixth bunt for a hit. The contrast in bunting skill between Peraza and Billy Hamilton is profound. Peraza knows what he’s doing. Joey Votto drove in Jesse Winker on a sharp liner to his pal Jay Bruce in right field. 

Alex Blandino is proving to be a capable utility player. He’s solid or better with the glove. He can play all the positions across the infield. And he’s not an automatic out. Blandino and Peraza combined on a nifty double play last night. 

Joey Votto made a nice defensive play, diving toward the first base line on a hard-hit ground ball, robbing Asdrubal Cabrera of an extra-base hit. Peraza himself made a couple nice plays at short, provoking Reds TV announcer Thom Brennaman into another one of those not-knowing-what-he’s-talking-about superlatives. 

Update: Sam Greene, the terrific photographer at the Cincinnati Enquirer caught this image of Raisel Iglesias grabbing his arm as described above. Manager Jim Riggleman said after the game that Iglesias felt a twinge catching a ball in the 9th, but went down to the warm-up room and “worked it out.” Iglesias did pitch the 10th, but this bears watching. 

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. Duvall y’all! 2 wins in a row and 2 very good outings from Castillo and Romano! Matt Harvey’s Reds are unbeatable! On to LA!

    • Maybe Meso was the jinx.

      • He is on an opposing teqm now but he was a class guy with the Reds and nevr complained when Barnhart won the job. Wish Devin well except against the Red

  2. We’re going streaking!!!!

  3. And Meseraco’s winless streak lives on….

  4. Sure more fun to win. Caught that Thom comment and agree wholeheartedly. Its like sometimes there is a different game going on than the one being watched. No matter will still watch every game but these last two were nice. Beat LA!!!

  5. Excellent win with University of Louisville product (yes, am an alum) as the hero. Seriously, though, Votto made two sterling plays at first. He’s down the reps down there so perhaps he will have a Gold Glove to show for it this season.

  6. Good for Duvall. He needed something like that.

  7. If the Reds aren’t careful, they might actually get their win percentage above .300.

  8. I feel the reds have a good supportive cast right now, just not enough center pieces
    . a good 3-5 rotation with Romano, Casitilo, Mahle
    good utility guys in peraza and blandino
    good would be pinch hitters in Winker and Gennet
    good bullpen

    now we just need a Jose Rijo, Tom browning, Eric Davis and Barry Larkin and throw in another nasty boy and we will be fine.

    • Peraza is the starting shortstop, not a utility player, for the time being, at least. Winker is too good a hitter to be used once a game

  9. It is going to be very interesting to see how the Reds rotation plays out over the next month or 5 weeks. The Reds won’t really need a 5th starter for much of that time.
    The Reds have off days on May 17, 21 and 31.
    The Reds have off days on June 4, 11, 14, 18.
    That is a lot of off days coming up, so a 5th starter is only needed a handful of times over the next 5 weeks.
    With Harvey going to be in the rotation, and he would have to start if the Reds are thinking of flipping him later in July, would it not be prudent to send Mahle back to AAA for those 5 weeks to get that extra year of service time back?? Finnegan, if he goes to the pen could be the spot starter, or Jackson Stephens could fill in also for a couple of those starts by the #5 starter.
    If Harvey was picked up to partially help get that extra year of service time back on Mahle, this might end up being a shrewd move.

    • I think the Reds will probably go ahead and use 5 starters, giving everyone an extra day of rest. Maybe not though… As for sending Mahle down, I think that would be a mistake unless he gives them a reason to do so. I mean, it’s an obvious service time manipulation game if they do something like that and players (and agents) really don’t like that.

      • I know what you are saying. But hat is 7 off days in a 32 day stretch. Mahle’s next 2 scheduled outings are tomorrow night in LA and next Tuesday night, May 15th, in SF. Finnegan’s, or the #5 spot, comes up Friday night in LA and next Wednesday, May 16h, in SF. The that roll of off days begins on the 17th. The way some of those off days fall, some pitchers will get 7 days in between starts if they don’t skip anyone. It looks like there is real potential there to throw some guys off with the extra time off.
        It won’t be pitch sequencing, but rather pitcher sequencing that we should keep an eye on.

        • Give us something to keep an eye on anyway… Matt Harvey means that they’ve definitely sealed Garrett into the role of “relief pitcher” doesn’t it?

          • I think so. I haven’t seen much of anything on the stretching him out for the rotation that they mentioned.
            On Harvey/Mahle, looking for a silver lining in that.

        • Maybe they skip Bailey and let him figure out what he is doing wrong.

          • I don’t think they can take him out of the rotation but skipping him a turn may not be a bad idea at all.

    • The novel idea would be NOT to worry about Mahle’s service time and get him an affordable extension after he proves himself a top of the rotation starter.

  10. I can’t even enjoy a semi spectacular win!!! The reason I am so bummed is the trade! I know that Mex needed to go but the wasted cash from a supposed cash strapped team! The trade was one broke toy.for another maybe straight up the Mets slight advantage with the cash thrown in the Reds get molested again! This is just rubbing salt in the wound from giving the Braves 15 million last year to Learn absolutely nothing!! I will now let this drop till the next idiotic management decision! Sorry about the TOS violation but idiotic was the most charitable choice I could come up with!!!!@@@

    • It’s my understanding that the way the money works out, the Reds are basically still paying Mesoraco’s salary and the Mets are still paying Harvey’s. Neither team added or subtracted payroll. I don’t like the deal but the Reds didn’t increase their outlay of money for the season in this deal. If I had to guess, they may even be thinking that if they can fix/flip Harvey at the deadline, they may even get $2-million or so of salary relief.

      • Exactly. The worst case is they pay out what they were already committed to pay out and get nothing in return, The better case is they flip Harvey for little to nothing in return and still pay out what they were committed to pay all along. The best case is Harvey shows some bit of his old mojo and somebody gives them a middling prospect and some cash for him which reduces their outlay..

    • By getting rid of BP, they found a good hitter in Scooter, who could be flipped for a prospect down the road. By getting rid of Mez, you not only get rid of a bad player, but you also get to take a bad player out of the rotation (Finnegan). So net loss of 1 bad player if Harvey stinks it up

  11. Some people aren’t happy unless they are unhappy.

  12. Granted, Thom talks too much and is prone to hyperbole, but at least he puts some excitement into his calls. George Grande should be on the croquet circuit he’s so dull. Reds pitched and fielded like a good team today. I’ll take some more of that.

    • Johnny Bench should call every game.

    • Aw, c’mon. George likes to reminisce and say nice things about everyone. Why call the game?

      • Too much George Grande can get on my nerves but his positive outlook, good nature, and humor are a nice change when sprinkled in.

        • OK, a few times a year for old times sake. But I thought he retired?

          • Nobody actually retires it seems these days… Walt Jocketty is my favorite example. George Grande in small doses isn’t too, too bad.

  13. Cincinnati Reds Baseball 2018: “We’ll Get the Lineup Card Right Every Game”

  14. Steve, I saw Iglesias grab his upper arm not forearm. If it was the forearm I did not see it.
    This series a sign of playing better. In the rubber match of a pitchers’ duel (this is what most playoff games are like) our pitchers played tough until the offense pushed across a run to tie, then later to win.
    They haven’t shown this toughness so far this year.
    “Please, sir, my I have another?”

  15. Two encouraging games from Castillo and Romano. It’s a dream but 4 of 7 on the Left Coast?

  16. If Mahle/Castillo/Romano can develop into MLB caliber pitchers this season, Riggleman will have made more progress in the rebuild in 80% of a season than Price did in 3 years.

    It just goes to show how badly things were screwed up.

    • Or that things were on the cusp of breaking like they have anyway. We will never know unless somebody on the inside candidly speaks to what was going on before and after the changes in management and coaching personnel.

      • Good point Jim but I don’t think Williams or the Castellinis will tip their hand. I would expect occasional brief episodes of progress this year but the deficits are glaring (pitching,defense,pride/attitude). I was unrealistic to think this team could compete for the division next year.It will be telling to see what the FO is willing to spend in the off season. Despite the failings of this time/management, I enjoy the camaraderie of this site

      • The point is, Jim, things should not have taken so long to get to this point. Castillo/Romano/Mahle should have been taking their lumps last season and maybe even some the season before, not having innings wasted on journeymen like the various Adlemans and Feldmans that have passed through in recent seasons.

        This offense is good enough to compete. The pitching I really believe COULD have been ready if Price had been playing to develop instead of playing to win. Price’s failure to me isn’t that he lost, it’s that he lost pointlessly. That’s why we’re in the situation where the offense is ready to compete (and still has reinforcements coming in the form of Senzel) but the pitching just isn’t there.

        • I agree somewhat.

          I’d include Stephenson in this too. He put together a third of a season as a starter last year that compared to and in some ways was better than what Romano did; and, he seems to have the stuff to outperform his apparent indicator stats (i.e. he gets away with “too many” BB because of the rate he misses bats and records Ks). So, maybe he was also a guy ready to bloom. And this is RS’s last option year unless they save it by leaving him in the minors all season; so, there should have been more immediacy to push him along, sink or swim.

          But to the underlying point, I don’t think we really know how whether how these guys were handled was Price’s outright choice and how much was just Price being the face of the organization.

          • Excuse my early (for me) morning brain cramp. Stephenson’s option is used by virtue of him being at AAA. He is on his final option year.

        • Well Castillo wasn’t even a farm hand until last season and was up mid-year. Ramono was hurt in AAA for a while after his initial ineffective stint, and has been give aple breathing room to grow since. Mahle started 2017 in AA and is up with the big club on the early side of the timeline. These three are not where you can say they were wasting away. Reed and Stephenson maybe, but their on-going control issues are sufficient reason for being in AAA. The only standout who could be in the rotation this season is Garret. The only reason I can propose for not putting him in the rotation might be some lingering injury issue from last year and/or ST. Perhaps a strategy to limit both his and Mahle’s innings this year? But that will remain a mystery for now I suppose.

        • Well, the Reds have had an excuse to not bring Senzel up here recently, as he’s currently battling dizziness. I think he’s been out a week.

      • It is a different time and a lot of water has gone under the bridge but I miss the communication with the Red’s front office that was more evident to me when there were six newspapers in the metro area, including Lexington, Ky., where the GM or owner would address the fans in the sports writers columns. Dick Williams does give interviews occasionally, but his responses seem to be rather scripted not revealing much of what is going on. It will take awhile, but eventually front offices will have to address the fans through the electronic blog world. The Reds have a dedicated fan base and they can’t be ignored.

        • Yeah, it seemed like a lot of the organization’s side of the Price firing was propagated via the Twitter feed with DW eventually speaking to the media in grater length later,

  17. Its been said often but we should already know more then we about these guys.I am not sure who called the shots last year but well nothing was accomplished.So we knew going in what we were going to face when nothing was done to improve our offensive holes and going with young guys and Homer and Finny coming back from injury.Honestly we should have won a few more games but we haven’t.The 3 young guys starting I feel could turn into at least average major league starters with Castillo maybe having a higher ceiling because of pure stuff.Last night Riggleman mixed and matched out of the pen until we got some breathing room late.Today he went with his best including Iggy for the last two innings.The starters gave us a chance,our manager played to win each game and the guys made it happen.No saving guys for tomorrow and having Duvall late with a chance to win it worked out.Good job.

    • A mostly agree with what you say about the 3 young guys, though I think Mahle might have the highest ceiling of all. I think both he and Castillo could be 2s and maybe even one of them could be a 1. I think Mahle just exudes confidence and aggression and he has good stuff and command. I think he’s a Tom Seaver / Don Drysdale in the making (I probably need to calm down!). Castillo is exciting and the last two games are so hopeful. Much more like last year. He looks more confident as though he remembers what he did last year (muscle-memory wise). I don’t think Romano has as high a ceiling (probably a 3 at the most), but then again, he was very good today. Maybe I’m underestimating him. I do think he’s got a lot of bulldog in him.

      As awful as this season is, I think the Reds have found 3 solid starters. They are young and so they’ll have bad innings that leave us scratching our heads. I just hope the Reds FO finally relents and gives Garrett a chance to start. The kid deserves a shot. I just don’t know what it’s going to take for him to finally get a chance. Maybe he’s our LH Bob Gibson!

      • Personally I think Castillo at least has a chance to turn into a legit #1, barring the injury curse.

      • Garrett I think could be a good starter too if he’s ever given another chance.

        From the 3 we’re talking about, this is who I compare and hope they can aspire to (using more recent examples):

        Mahle = Mike Mussina
        Castillo = Jose Fernandez
        Romano = Aaron Harang

        If you had a rotation of those 3 pitchers in their prime, you’d win a lot of games. If the 3 we have can come close to emulating them, and I think their stuff/demeanor matches up well by comparison, we could have something special on our hands.

      • It’s certainly possible that they’re still worried about Garrett’s hip. It’s also possible that they’re looking at a bullpen which needs to cover 4 or more innings every game. Such a pen needs more than two sound guys at the back end. Maybe the starters will be able to extend themselves, but five or six inning starts seem to be the norm, and might stay that way as long as there is such a premium placed on max-effort fastballs.

      • I think Garrett was given the Bob/Reed treatment from last year.Maybe it is and was the injury concern but remember until he got injured he had been anointed as the next great lefty.The Reds just don’t give these young guys enough starts to really find out what they can do.A few stinkers and here they go.Puzzling and frustrating to them I am sure and of course to all of us at the nation.Hopefully Garrett and Bob get another chance.You could argue their stuff is just as good as Romano’s or even Finny’s right now.Lets give them a chance.

  18. I hope Raisel Iglesias’ arm issue is not serious, but I do hope the FO considers the lack of success of this rebuild and looks to trade him for valuable assets this summer. It looks to me that the next good team that contends, sad as it is as I am getting long in the tooth, might not be until 2020-21. Will Iglesias be what he is today in 2 or 3 years? I doubt it.

    • He’s been lights out and some contender might overpay as much as what the Yankees got for Chapman

  19. I gave up hope on west coast trips years ago.

    But I still cross my fingers

    • Heard that.

    • I’m trying to remember; but, didn’t they have a couple of good ones in the 90 win seasons 2010/12/13?

      2010>3-3 on an interleague swing v. A’s & M’s; 6-3 v. Ariz; LAD; SFG;
      2012>6-5 against the 3 NL California teams on an 11 game trip
      2013>faulty Jim memory

    • Those west coast trips were usually in June and would also coincide with the Reds usual yearly June Swoon.

  20. Reds have made a good trade. Mes cant play anymore. Harvey will be good. Tired of people attacking the rebuild and praising the Braves.

    • Agreed Walt! Mes is DONE. His bat is SLOW after shoulder surgery. He might get better a year after surgery, but he’s not on contract next year. Harvey is young with a chance to rebound. decent chance for trade bait. THREE OTHER TEAMS WANTED THIS GUY. WAKE UP CINCINNATI! This was a good trade. If Harvey flops, the Reds are out nothing. Devin’s salary was already paid for….

      • This is NOT the pre-injury Matt Harvey. He carries a legit 7.00 ERA. And just got DFA”d from a team needing starting pitching right now. I would rather have Meso than another washed up pitcher.

        • You never know…it’s hard to evaluate a trade until the guy you got has played for you for awhile. Right now, it looks like a wash: One guy who needs to return to a semblance of his old self for another. They’re even the same age.

    • Hmmm… I wonder if the winning record of the Braves and their plethora of good young talent has anything to do with it. I also wonder if the Reds being mired in losing season after losing season with this year being the worst has anything to do with it. Maybe you should be tired of an incompetent FO and the owner of the Reds.

    • Walt S. Jocketty? The Braves have 20-21 yr olds that are tearing up the league. The Reds have a 23 yr old w/vertigo and a 25 yr old w/no HRs. Braves and Yankees deserve a lot of credit!

  21. Steve, great recap…and nice Comey reference. We’re on a roll! Lookout Cheatin’ Cards!

  22. “Seth Maness asked for and has been granted release from Royals org. He prefers to start. 2.89 era in minors career as starter.”
    Maness is 29 years old.
    Walt Jocketty and Dick Williams will be on this former Cardinal like 2 ducks on a June bug.

  23. I heard a little rumor this morning that the Dodgers are talking to the Reds about a starting pitcher. No, not Matt Harvey.
    The Dodgers fixed Tony Cingrani last season.
    The Dodgers are in the process of fixing Ariel Hernandez, 2.89 ERA/ 1.48 FIP/ 2.47 xFIP, 9.1 IP, 14 K, 3 BB.
    The Dodgers are looking at CA native Robert Stephenson. They were said to be encouraged by Stephenson’s last start and that Stephenson could immediately slot into their rotation. Reds won’t get Verdugo back from LA, but the Reds might be able to get a resurgent Joc Pederson. Pederson is their 4th OF with Kemp, Taylor, and Puig.
    Getting Stephenson instead would allow LA to stay under the luxury tax as opposed to getting a more experienced pitcher. Puig becomes a free agent after 2018, it could allow LA to go after Bryce Harper next winter too.

    • Heck, I was encouraged after Stephenson’s last start. He does this sometimes, looks like an ace in the making. It’s tantalizing. I’ve been a big Stephenson supporter and wish he’d get it together but if the Reds could get Pederson for him then they should. I don’t think the Dodgers would do that deal but maybe I’m wrong. Pederson is essentially their 4th OF as you said.

      It may be too soon to say the Dodgers fixed Cingrani. He looked really nice last year but a little over 19 innings is a small sample. 14 innings so far this year and his BB/K ratio looks great. He’s striking out a ton of guys. He is getting hit though… Cingrani has definitely improved under the Dodgers and there was a great article I saw about why. You may have been the one that pointed me at it. I think it was you or Jim. That said, not enough there to say he is fixed.

      I’d do Stephenson for Pederson and I like Stephenson. Would the Dodgers? Not sure they would but I’d hope Williams would ask because the Reds seem to have all but given up on him.

    • I’d do that deal.

  24. It is interesting to see the higher walk rates for Billy Hamilton, Tucker Barnhart and Adam Duvall that was preceded by Eugenio Suarez adjustment he made last year that yielded significant improvement in his walk rate. Quite an interesting development in the hitting approach of several, this bodes watching to see if the trend continues for Hamilton, Barnhart and Duvall.

    Speaking of Duvall, he has a horrid bapip of .183, well below his career .270 babip. As I mentioned he is walking at a significantly higher clip 10.4% vs 6.7% career, while his strikeout rate is down. This is all with a hard hit % that is higher than his career average. This bodes well for him going forward.

    • You just described the reasoning the Reds have for keeping him in the lineup. I like Winker but I see zero power there. OBP weighs a little more heavily than SLG in offensive calculations but there is more to hitting and way more to baseball than OBP. The argument is that you know what Duvall is and you need to see more of Winker. I agree, but I’m thinking he shouldn’t be taking over exclusively for Duvall. He should be in there all but a couple games a month for rest and/or maintenance. This leaves Duvall/Schebler/Hamilton rotating and that works for me.

      • Jesse Winker continues to put up really bad metrics as a RF’r (see fangraphs). It appears to me that LF is the only option for Winker.

        Despite the date pointing toward a Duvall rebound; I’m still for Winker getting the most playing time in LF.

      • Winker hit 7 hrs in 121 abs last year. Granted, small sample size, but it seemed like once he found his power stroke they piled up. This is his first full year, he’s hitting at the top of the order and maybe concentrating on OPB vs. power. But he’s launched some when he hits them. I think he’s still finding his comfort zone. He’s obviously not Joey, but similar in that respect.

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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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