The Reds missed big chances to put up crooked numbers in the 4th, 5th, and 6th innings. They didn’t miss their chance in the 7th inning, scoring eight runs, capped off by a Michael Lorenzen pinch-hit grand slam. The Reds ended a streak of seven consecutive losses to the Brewers. The Reds set a team record with 18 strikeouts in a 9 inning game. Tyler Mahle had 12 of those strikeouts in just 5.2 innings. The Brewers brought their catcher in to pitch in the bottom of the 8th inning, and the Reds added two more runs.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (34-48) 12 15 2
Milwaukee Brewers (48-33) 3 5 1
W: () L: () S:
FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Biggest Play of the Game

According to Fangraphs WPA statistic (winning percentage added), the most important play of the game was Scooter Gennett’s RBI double with 0 outs in the 7th inning, tying the game at 3 (Votto advanced to 3rd). That play increased the Reds chances of winning by 25.1% (from 55.4% to 80.5%).

Player of the Game

Michael Lorenzen hit a grand slam. Of course he did. This guy is just incredible and might be the easiest player in the history of this franchise to root for.

Positives

Tyler Mahle struck out a career high 12 batters, despite only pitched 5.2 innings. His defense didn’t do him any favors, as 2 errors lead to 2 unearned runs. Mahle got off to a hot start, striking out 8 batters through the first three innings. His fastball was touching 98 MPH late in this game. Mahle finished the month of June with a 2.18 ERA, and struck out 37 batters in 33.0 innings.

Scooter Gennett had 3 hits, and raised his season slash line to  .332/.372/.526.

Eugenio Suarez, Adam Duvall, and Tucker Barnhart all had a 2-hit afternoons. Barnhart got his 2 hits off the bench.

David Hernandez pitched a shutout inning, striking out 2.

Negatives

The Reds had a potential big rally stall in the 4th inning. Joey Votto was thrown out trying to go first to third on an incredibly accurate throw from right-field by Hernán Pérez. It seemed like the correct decision to go for third, and you just have to tip your cap to Perez for a great throw. The Reds would have had 2nd & 3rd with 0 outs and Suarez up, trailing 1-0 at the time.

The Reds missed more big chances in the both the 5th and 6th innings. They loaded the bases with 0 outs in both innings, and the result was only 2 runs. But, everyone found out in the 7th inning that if you keep kicking at the door, eventually it will fall. That is why it is far more important to be looking at things like how many times you get on base, keep rallies going, etc., than harping on batting average with runners in scoring position.

Eric Thames continues to kill the Reds. He now has FOURTEEN career home runs against the Reds.

Not so random thoughts……..

I think the talk of playing Michael Lorenzen in CF is a little far fetched. However, when you are looking at Lorenzen and his overall value, his hitting should definitely be something considered in making him a starting pitcher. It would be easier to get him pinch-hit chances on days he doesn’t start, plus the obvious 2-3 at-bats when he starts.

…..and no, Lorenzen should not start at DH in a couple weeks against the Indians. That would certainly be fun to see, but he is not a better hitter than Duvall, Schebler, or Winker as much as we might like to think he is.

Up Next:

Brewers at Reds
Sunday, 1:05 PM
TV: FOX Sports Ohio
Matt Harvey (5.28 ERA) vs Freddy Peralta (1.59 ERA)

Nick is a lifelong Reds fan who was born and raised in Cincinnati. He acquired his love of baseball from his late grandfather. Nick moved to the Cleveland area in 2014 with his wife, and his currently fighting to convert his beautiful baby daughter Emma to Reds fandom. Nick has been writing for Redleg Nation since 2013. Follow Nick on Twitter @nicholaspkirby.

Join the conversation! 75 Comments

  1. …..and no, Lorenzen should not start at DH in a couple weeks against the Indians. That would certainly be fun to see, but he is not a better hitter than Duvall, Schebler, or Winker as much as we might like to think he is.

    Thats probably what they said about a certain Red Sox pitcher in 1916 too! Actually Lorenzen is off to a better start with the bat then George Herman got off to:)

    Reply
    • George Herman was just a little bit better then avg when it came to hitting.
      714 proves that.

      Reply
    • “Thats probably what they said about a certain Red Sox pitcher in 1916 too!”

      And this Reds FO would probably trade him too like the 1916 Red Sox did with their player and live with the Lorenzen curse…

      Reply
  2. …but he’s a better hitter than Billy.

    Reply
  3. If he hasn’t started taking pregame practice in the OF, he needs to, if for no other reason than be ready for in game switching – they need to consider bringing him to pitch around a LOOGY, before and after, and double switch so he gets the AB as well. Maddon did this with Travis a few times.

    Reply
    • The Reds enter play on July 1st with 4 players totaling 205 RBI. Suarez (60), Gennett (54), Duvall (49), & Votto (42). That stat seems high to me. I wonder when the last time was that 4 Reds had more than 200 RBI before July?

      Reply
      • The ’99 team probably came close. Vaughn had close to 60, Casey had close to 50, Taubensee had close to 45, and Cameron had about 35. This all from dividing their final RBI numbers in half, they could have had quite a bit more/less, but that’s the best I can do.

        Reply
    • THIS!

      Reply
    • I’ve heard it said several times that he’s in the outfield everyday shagging fly balls. While I’m sure a lot of players might do this for fun or to kill time, I rather think as a former outfielder, he’s always keeping himself ready in case the Reds need a position player at some point.

      Reply
  4. Lorenzen is a freak. He’s faster then Mike Trout….anyone remember the game where they pinch-ran him at first and he scored on a double? He was absolutely flying! I think they timed him like .02 slower then Billy. Do you think Trout could throw a 97 mph sinker? Maybe he could? Or atleast 90-something. My point is that Lorenzen is a freak and they need to take advantage of his abilities. Yes….I believe he’s a better hitter then Duvall and much more power then Winker. I’m sure they would find holes in his game eventually, but is it worth the payoff if he became an offensive player capable of 30 HR, .280, .875 ops with 20 steals? I’d say its worth exploring!

    Reply
    • Careful there. You’re thinking outside the box. How good a hitter Michael is, is frankly unknown. But I would really like to see him get a couple hundred ML AB’s and just find out. He is a really good athlete, that’s for certain.

      Reply
    • I have been wanting to see him get some time in CF all year. Yes it is a small sample size, but his swing looks better than it did his rookie year. So maybe that will continue with more ABs. Let’s find out . . . SP or CF for him.

      Reply
  5. He likely couldn’t have much success as a hitter playing regularly. Pitchers would pitch to him like a regular player – to scouting reports.

    It does make you wonder if they should have tried him as an outfielder in the minor leagues. Relief pitchers are a dime a dozen. Power hitting outfielders are especially valued the way baseball is played now.

    Reply
    • He went in the 2nd round as a pitcher but they were saying 3rd round as an outfielder. Not to mention he’s gained 25-30 lbs of muscle since he was a rookie in 2015.

      Reply
      • ML was chosen by the Reds at #38 overall. That was technically a 1st round supplemental pick. The Reds clearly had concerns he wouldn’t be around at their 2nd round slot (#67 overall). The talk is that the Reds were the only org that projected him as a pitcher.

        He was also chosen in the 7th round (#221 overall) out of high school by the Rays who hoped (but failed obviously) to buy him out of going to college. That would have been as a position player.

        Reply
    • Do you really think that after 2 home runs in his last 2 at bats, they didn’t have a scouting report that said “take Lorenzen seriously”? I’d rather find it out than see Billy out there everyday.

      Reply
      • I guess the Reds don’t take Thames seriously? Problem for opposition is nobody has a book on ML right now. What little previous sample size there was is OBE because he’s reinvented himself with the body building.

        Today he opened his hips and turned on a pitch that looked a bit low and in, certainly not a down Broadway cookie. On the replay, I thought it looked like he did not really nail it; but, obviously he had a good launch angle and the bat speed to overpower it. 100+MPH exit velocity.

        As has been said, the only way to find out how good of a hitter he is over time is to give him ABs over time.

        Reply
  6. For some reason this reminds me of Hal King.

    Anybody remember him?

    Reply
    • Left handed power hitting reserve catcher, that hit a pinch hit GS against the Dodgers back in 1973 on a 4th of July weekend series at Riverfront, and turned the season around for the Reds. Sort of.

      Reply
      • A+! Accuracy to the nth degree – concission to be envied – wonderfully evocative.

        Seven of us were gathered around the transistor radio to pick up softball game and when you hit that homerun we put our arms over our shoulders shoulders and did a jig.

        One of my top five baseball moments of all time.

        Reply
        • Fixing it

          Seven of us were gathered around the transistor radio at a pick up softball game and when he hit that homerun we put our arms over each other’s shoulders and did a jig.

          Reply
      • It did turn the season around. They were 60-26 after that HR. He hit it off Don Sutton when the Reds trailed the Dodgers by 11 games. The Reds won the division but lost to the Mets in the playoffs best known by the brawl at 2nd base involving Pete Rose and Bud Harrelson.

        Reply
      • Sort of? Cincinnati was 39-37 before King’s homerun. They went 60-26 the rest of the season. I think that was a turn around.

        Reply
    • Are you kidding? Pinch homer off Don Sutton when Reds were buried about 10 games behind LA. 2nd game of doubleheader. 1972. Rest is history.

      Reply
  7. Lorenzen is not the easiest player that I have rooted for since I’ve been a Reds fan since the mid 1940’s. But he is the easiest player for me to root for in this lost season.

    Reply
  8. Did anyone catch Riggleman’s comment in the post game interview when he was asked why he pulled Hamilton as a pinch hitter and replace hime with Lorenzen then turned around and sent Hamilton in to pinch run at 3B with bases loaded and no outs?

    What I was able to pick up from his response made absolutely no sense and he sounded like he wasn’t even buying what he was saying.

    Reply
    • Did not here Riggleman, but my sense is that he is an “old school, play the game the right way” kind of manager, and makes a lot of moves by “intuition”. So he probably had some notion of WHY he does what he does, but it doesn’t usually stand up to too much scrutiny.
      But hey, let’s make him PERMANENT!

      Reply
      • I listen to his responses when he is asked a question and just scratch my head. He makes nonsensical statements too often. He needs to retire. Please don’t hire him permanently.

        Reply
    • Lorenzen was then guy he wanted at the plate but he was defending the honor of Hamilton and Brandon Dixon by not saying that and instead saying a lot of things that didn’t really quite add up as nearly as I could tell.

      Reply
  9. No more going off the deep end after this…but how many pitchers have produced their teams hardest hit ball of the season? I’m going to venture that its rare and maybe never been done since they’ve tracked exit velocity. Lorenzen is not just a good hitting pitcher. Thats it for me. See you tomorrow….Go Reds!!!

    Reply
    • Go back to Boston when they had the Babe (pitcher).

      Reply
    • Indy – the Lorenzen single was not just the hardest hit ball of the season for the Reds, it was THE fastest exit velocity for ANY Red since they’ve recorded for statcast, which goes back maybe a few years.

      Reply
  10. Since when is it the correct decision to try for third with nobody out and two of your best hitters up next? Granted, I’m no major leaguer, but my understanding is you’re not supposed to gamble in that situation. And the fact that Votto was out by a good 5 feet suggests it was a pretty big gamble.

    Reply
    • In the old days, for good or ill, there would’ve been a clubhouse kangaroo court and they would have fined him. It was a semi-good natured way to make sure someone use their noggin and/or didn’t put themselves before the team.

      Reply
    • I’m sure it’s the correct decision in a lot of scenarios, maybe not this one. I didn’t see this particular instance, but it’s probably always the correct decision if you are Billy Hamilton, if the OF has a poor arm, if the team is struggling to score. It didn’t turn out well in this instance, but going 1st to 3rd is something that is typically applauded when successfull

      Reply
    • You are correct. Bad decision, and it was Votto’s decision and not Hatcher’s. The RF pretty much had the ball right as JV touched second. Never make the first out at third base. It was a good throw, but not a difficult one.

      It would have been fine for Billy Hamilton to take third, but not Joey. 100% Tootblan.

      Reply
  11. Lorenzen should be considered as an option in the OF, no reason not to with that kind of bat speed

    Great to see 12 strike outs for Mahle

    Reply
  12. These are major league pitchers Lorenzen is rocking.

    Lorenzen should ABSOLUTELY get 100-200 ABs this summer in the outfield. There is really nothing stopping them. He gets a day off on any day after relieving, and on days he starts in the OF, he could be 1st or 2nd out of the pen, just come to the mound from the OF, and stay in the game and hit. No double switch, no nothing. Think of it like a Reverse Ohtani.

    This team is destined for 70ish wins this year. Who cares? Maybe you have a decent reliever here, or maybe you have a borderline Allstar OFer.

    Reply
  13. It’s awfully difficult to not ask for Lorenzen to debut in the OF. Billy can sit, Schebler to CF and Lorenzen to RF. Isn’t an every day player more valuable than a relief pitcher?

    Reply
  14. Lorenzen has given up 5 earned runs this year. He’s driven in 6 runs. Could he finish the year with more RBIs than Earned Runs?

    Reply
    • My employee is a Mets season ticket holder. He pointed out that Lorenzen has more HRs (3) and RBIs (6) than Jose Reyes (1,4). The rub is that Lorenzen has done it in 7 PAs, vs 114 PAs for Reyes.

      Reply
  15. From what the announcers have said several times, Lorenzen shags flies in the outfield every day and takes BP regularly. He would love to have a shot at this. What do we have to lose? Give him some innings at his natural position: Centerfield.

    Reply
    • Yeah but he is years removed from reading a ball off a bat at game speed from CF and has never done so at the professional level. Certainly the way he fields his position at pitcher suggests he should be able to adjust to CF at MLB; but, we should be prepared for the possibility it might take a while for him to round into form as a CF.

      Reply
      • The Reds should take the necessary time to get Lorenzen ready for the outfield which I think should be right field since Schebler can handle center field until the young outfielders in the minors arrive in a few years. Lorenzen can hit, and he’s needed with Suarez and Peraza to even up the mostly lefthanded hitting Reds lineup. Offseason winter ball in the outfield should get Lorenzen ready for 2019. This move would make it clearer that a big trade with Gennett and others might well net the Reds a good starting pitcher to anchor the rotation.

        Reply
    • Riggleman said he is not considering Lorenzen as a two way player and might let him bat when he is pitching or might pinch hit for him. In other words, Riggleman is clueless.

      Reply
  16. Anyone got stats on the following?

    -Last time a relief pitcher hit a pinch hit home run
    -Last time a relief pitcher hit a grand slam
    -Last time a relief pitcher hit a pinch hit grand slam
    -Last time a relief pitcher hit home runs in back-to-back games? (as relief or pinch hitter)

    Reply
  17. With his body building regimen and taking BP the Reds FO once again failed to categorize a guy correctly. They think this guy is a middle reliever while Billy is an everyday outfielder. Lorenzen should have been converted to OF years ago, his arms and shoulders are too big to be a pitcher, he keeps getting hurt as a pitcher… every other team in the draft saw Lorenzen as an outfielder but our geniuses stuck him at pitcher and lost an opportunity to develop him properly as a potentially elite slugger. I’d say I am disgusted but its par for the course with this brain trust.. and I use the word “trust” tongue in cheek. I’d say more negative things but this was a nice win let’s enjoy the moment.

    Reply
    • I’m one of the folks who has said here that the Reds were the only team which projected Lorenzen as a pitcher. That’s what I’ve read in a couple of accounts on MLB.com and other places where Lorenzen himself was a primary source,

      However it has occurred to me that while other orgs were going to start Lorenzen as an OF, it may well have been in the back of a mind or two elsewhere that there was always the possibility of using him as reliever/ closer if he were to be a bust as position guy.

      And as things have turned out, ML is paying his way as a reliever. So, it isn’t that whoever decided his course with the Reds was 100% wrong, just that they may have made a decision which may not be getting them the best value from his talents.

      Reply
  18. Nick:
    “….But, everyone found out in the 7th inning that if you keep kicking at the door, eventually it will fall. That is why it is far more important to be looking at things like how many times you get on base, keep rallies going, etc., than harping on batting average with runners in scoring position….”

    Keep thinking that….but how often does the door fall for huge 8 run innings?

    Go back to April and review the games. How many losses involved the Reds going 1 for 10, or 0 for 6 with runners in scoring positions? How pathetic were the Reds hitting with runners on base?

    It’s half the equation to get on base. The other half is equally….if not MORE important.

    Would you rather the Reds strand 12 runners on the bases having gone 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position posting a big fat 0 on the scoreboard……or strand 3 runners having gone 1 for 3 with RISP but at least scoring a single run?

    To win the game you have to score more runs than the other team – not exceed the other team in on base percentage. Having a high OBP helps for sure. To think you can ignore the other half of the equation, clutch hitting, or stats like avg with RISP is sticking your head in the sand.

    Rallies and runs happen infrequently if you don’t hit when runners are on base.

    For the elite OBP guys hit them first and second….(2nd in the order is where Joey Votto belongs despite his slowness). For the guys who bring home the bacon hit them 3-6. That’s Eugenio Suarez, Jesse Winker, Scooter Gennett, then Adam Duvall (usually in that order).

    Reply
    • Nick’s point is accurate. Yes they have to hit, nobody espouses that hitting isn’t a vital component of scoring. But you also have to allow for the truth that sometimes you hit a stretch when the hits don’t fall. You can’t score in every given opportunity, but the best thing to do is keep giving yourself opportunities… You can get dealt aces to split in blackjack and still go bust, but I’d rather they keep coming. It’s understanding the long term payoff, not unique on-offs.

      Reply
    • And remember, the position on OBP isn’t “getting on is more important than hitting” but rather “getting is much more important than making outs.”

      Reply
      • Well said. … I think the other point is that the best teams typically end the season very high in runners left on base just because they have so many runners on base during a game.

        Reply
  19. More important than the awesome comeback vs. the dreaded Brewers…the pitching performances of Mahle and Castillo and Romano offer great hope for the rest of this year and the next few years. Mahle and Castillo both showed they are not far away from becoming a dominant one oneA punch of the pitching staff. Disco is already one/oneA/oneAA hopefully stays healthy the next three years. Romano pitched well under duress to limit the damage. Potentially a rock 4th or 5th starter. Harvey would be nice to keep but the money he and especially his agent will want dictates he has to go hopefully brings a decent haul from a talent rich team like the Yankees.

    The Dodgers withstood numerous injuries to their pitching staff last year and this year via having a surplus of starters. Kershaw, Ryu, Hill, Wood all have missed plenty of starts but they roll onward. Reds will need Bob Steve, Cody Reed to continue developing and even acquire a couple more inexpensive starters to cover the inevitable toll throwing a ball really fast entails.

    Reply
  20. #FreeLorenzen

    Reply
  21. Rumors are that Houston is “looking hard at Iglesias”, with Boston also interested. Houston has the better farm system, the only question is how desperate are they,

    Reply
  22. I need to vent about Marty (again). Of COURSE it was frustrating after walking away with only two runs with the bases loaded innings. He closed the second time it happened with a disgusted “if you don’t do better than that you don’t deserve to win.”
    I decided to check back in as I was preparing dinner, but how many people does he turn off (or get to turn off the radio) with his editorializing? Let us decide the implications, and heaven forbid have some enthusiasm for the game. Turns out, good things can happen if you hang in there sometimes. He even worked in a rant about too many relief pitchers on rosters instead of bench players (see Steve Mancuso’s great post on the Third Time Through and implications on the game).

    Reply
    • He is an angry old man. I think his problem is a combination of not having Joe around to balance the broadcast out and the fact he can say almost anything he wants with zero repercussions, because he knows he won’t be fired and could walk away at any point if he was questioned. He is the perfect example of hanging around too long. I would much rather remember his as the guy I listened to growing up as opposed to the angry old guy yelling at the kids to get off his lawn. Hopefully he retires soon and takes Thom with him

      Reply
      • A good summation Bill. I had fond memories of Marty and Joe as a kid, listening to them on the radio as a I played with my whiffle ball in the back yard. Now I can’t stand listening to Marty and it taints the positive memories I had.

        Reply
        • Marty has watched a lot more games than you and I, put together and multiplied by a thousand.
          Sometimes he gets grumpy He got grumpy with Joe. I don’t mind the grumpiness when the team fails to perform. A lot of fans identify with Mary’s discontent with the team when they don’t perform. Marty would be a liar if he pretended things are great when they aren’t. Joe got grumpy on the air too with bad play and bonehead pitching.

          Baseball is a game, and it is played by flawed people who sometimes screw up. And sometimes do amazing things. That’s what can be entertaining.

          What he is doing is entertainment. It apparently doesn’t entertain you or others, but other people do find it entertaining. I don’t listen much to games anymore, because I have other things to do than listen to the radio. But at the very least, the listeners know that Marty is being sincere and saying exactly what he thinks.

          Reply
          • Said well.

          • I’d like to think that radio broadcasters had the responsibility to provide accurate information to their listeners, not just to entertain. And certainly they shouldn’t misinform listeners for the sake of entertainment.

            Playing on emotions without facts and solid reasoning to back it up is disreputable in my book.

          • The problem is saying what he thinks when it is clearly wrong. He is like hiring a manager who completely ignores all modern baseball analytics, but won a World Series in the 80s. His past success as a broadcaster is no longer relevant

    • I like when announcers speak the truth about the game, and not worry about hurting the feelings of the players or listeners. Constant failures with the bases loaded are a problem. I don’t want to hear, “That’s OK fellas, nice try….you’ll get ’em next time.”
      Now Thom’s incessant, long-winded babbling I would gladly do without.

      Reply
      • I knew somebody would go that route… but the alternative to Marty’s cantankerous negativity doesn’t have to be its idealogocal opposite. I know I’m not asking for a pollyanna in the booth.

        Give us credit as listeners to know what is good and bad… but shouldn’t the voice of the franchise be somewhat invested in keeping the listener around? In isolation, sure, express the frustration… but let’s be honest, being negative has long become a constant rather than periodic for him.

        He foresakes his role as an important opinion shaper. I didn’t major in public relations, but I’d wager they seldom tell you to dump on your company on the regular.

        And then when a guy turns it around, he convienently tends to forget he bashed him for three innings.

        Reply
      • But if I had to choose only between a “glass half full” or “half empty” I would pick the half full person everytime. Baseball is a hobby and get away for me. While results aren’t always fun, I don’t want help with hating something.

        Reply
      • To me, the main problem with Brennaman isn’t his negativity per se, it’s that his understanding of how to win baseball games is so out of date, his rants are ignorant and misinform listeners.

        You chose a perfect example to demonstrate Brennaman’s weaknesses as a broadcaster – batting with bases loaded.

        First of all, research shows without a doubt that batting with the bases loaded isn’t a separate, distinct skill. It’s just batting. Implying it is a particular failure misinforms the listeners. It’s no more meaningful than complaining that batters don’t perform well on Wednesdays.

        Second, Brennaman doesn’t work hard enough (research) to know if his specific rants are accurate. For example, based on his broadcasting, it would be hard to know the Reds are the THIRD BEST hitting team in all of baseball with bases loaded, way in front of the fourth place team and far above average. He’s venting based on what he’s seen in the last couple innings, ignoring the actual context. So even though the stat is meaningless, Brennaman is completely wrong about how the Reds do it – again, misinforming his listeners.

        You might consider that “speaking the truth” but I don’t. In fact, it’s just the opposite.

        Reply
        • Yes! How great would it be to couch a game call with info like “they are the 3rd best at this” rather than knee jerk reactions.

          He went off on Blandino for taking too many pitches and called 3rd strikes. A fine enough observation… but it’d be much more interesting to ask Cowboy or someone WHY they think that’s happening and how to fix it instead of presenting the guy as weak.

          Reply
        • Good post, Steve.

          Reply
  23. Big day for Harvey & the Reds. I would have gone to the game today(for the first time in a long time) but it just didn’t work out.

    Reply

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About Nick Kirby

Nick is a lifelong Reds fan who was born and raised in Cincinnati. He acquired his love of baseball from his late grandfather. Nick moved to the Cleveland area in 2014 with his wife, and his currently fighting to convert his beautiful baby daughter Emma to Reds fandom. Nick has been writing for Redleg Nation since 2013. Follow Nick on Twitter @nicholaspkirby.

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