Tonight the Reds open a 10 game road trip with the first of two games versus the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. The Reds (48-58; 5th place NL Central) are 5-5 in 10 games since the All Star break. After being swept by the Pirates in their first post break series, they have bounced back to win 5 of 7 games. The Tigers (45-62; 3rd place AL Central) are also 5-5 over their last 10 games. Despite being in 3rd place in their division, the Tigers have a worse record than the Reds and are only half a game closer to the top of their division than are the 5th place Reds to the top of theirs. Game time is 7:10pm.
Reds right hander Homer Bailey will face off against Tiger leftie Matthew Boyd at the game’s beginning.
Tonight will be Homer Bailey’s second start since returning from his most recent stint on the DL. Last week in an encouraging return versus the Cardinals, Bailey pitched 6.2 innings allowing 2 earned runs on 5 hits while striking out 8. He was able to control the flow of the game by throwing first pitch strikes. The effort mirrored Bailey’s strong opening at the beginning of 2018 season prior to him slipping off into deep mediocrity and eventually landing on the DL. Fans can only hope Bailey will remain healthy and maintain the strong level of performance he posted last week because with about $35M guaranteed remaining due on contract, Bailey figures to be around at least through the end of the 2018 season.
Matthew Boyd faced the Reds on June 19 at GABP. He lasted just 4 innings in the game won 9-5 by the Reds. Boyd allowed 5 runs in those 4.0 innings of work with the big blow being a Joey Votto grand slam he gave up as the Reds cruised to a 9-0 lead before the Tigers posted all 5 of their runs in the 9th inning. Since that start Boyd has been on a rough road, pitching to a 6.90 ERA in 6 starts. However in his last two appearances he has allowed just 3 earned runs in 11.0 innings of work. MLB.com notes that Boyd typically makes good use of the sizable dimensions of Comerica Park, pitching to a 3.40 ERA and allowing a slugging percentage of just .328 on his home ground.
Once upon a time before TJ surgery, Homer Bailey’s K% hovered at around 20% and his HR/9 rate was around half of what it is now. Whether he can get back anywhere close to those numbers is the $35M question.
Both teams were off on Monday and should be at full strength tonight.
SP: Homer Bailey
SP: Matt Boyd
|1. Jose Peraza (SS)
2. Phillip Ervin (LF)
3. Joey Votto (1B)
4. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
5. Scooter Gennett (DH)
6. Tucker Barnhart (C)
7. Dilson Herrera (2B)
8. Brandon Dixon (RF)
9. Billy Hamilton (CF)
|1. JaCoby Jones (CF)
2. Nicholas Castellanos (RF)
3. Niko Goodrum (2B)
4. Victor Martinez (DH)
5. Jeimer Candelario (3B)
6. John Hicks (1B)
7. James McCann (C)
8. Jose Iglesias (SS)
9. Mike Gerber (LF)
I like this look for the Reds given that Schebler will go back in when he returns from the DL. Hopefully when that happens, Ervin is not the odd man out. It will be interesting to see if Gennett plays any OF to give Herrera more looks at 2B.
News and Notes
You’ve probably heard already but if not, this happened late Monday
— OhioJimWalker (@jn_walkerjr) July 31, 2018
Here’s a guy the Reds won’t be seeing tonight. Perhaps Billy Hamilton is still a Red because of this deal?
— MLB Trade Rumors (@mlbtraderumors) July 31, 2018
Well, are you happy with the way the trade deadline played out with the Reds? The deadline has passed; and, apparently the Reds only move has been the trade of Adam Duvall.
A part of me was sad to see Adam Duvall leave. He has been one of my favorites since he exploded onto the scene with his big first half in 2016. I’d stop whatever else was sharing my time with following the Reds game just to see his at bats and appreciated seeing the replays of some of his defensive exploits I missed in real time. However, I understand it was time for the organization to make this move; and, the fact they got what appears to be outstanding return for him makes it even better. Thanks Adam for your efforts. I hope you find yourself in the postseason with the Braves and do well.
Now I’m excited to (hopefully) see a lot more of Phillip Ervin in the next two months. If he can reach his draft day potential (#27 overall 2013) he should be at least as good as Jesse Winker (#49 overall 2012). And then there is that wave of young outfielders making noise at AA, A+ and on down the line. Life goes on. GO REDS!