Sometimes I forget how good Major League baseball players are at what they do. After spending hours fielding fly balls and grounders in high school, we would get to the game and still boot two or three plays in just such a horrendous fashion I’m sure our parents wondered if we actually practiced or just played home run derby for five hours after school each day.
Today, the Reds reminded me of my high school team. Missed cut offs, not covering the bag, baserunning TOOTBLANS along every inch of the paths. Any one would be excusable as a regular brain fart, but as the mental errors approached double digits, I wondered where exactly were these Jim Riggleman fundamentals?
Today, the Reds just looked fundamentally bad.
Cincinnati Reds 4 | Detroit Tigers 7 | My Amusement Level 3/10
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Sal Romano, despite the loss and 4 ER, had a nice day at the ballpark. Jose Iglesias’ double in the 2nd was a nasty piece of luck, as Romano jammed him on an inside fastball but the resulting grounder took a high hop over the third base bag. Eugenio Suarez did Romano no favors by slinging the cutoff throw wide and allowing the second run to score easily and the runner to move to third with one out. Romano worked out of that particular jam though.
The thing I noticed most about Sal today is that he has a really nice curveball. It’s not a standout pitch, but it has strong 12-6 break, and when Romano keeps it down, drops straight from the bottom third of the zone to the dirt. However, Romano has a tendency to hang it, and boy is it hittable. Just ask Tigers’ first baseman Jim Adduci, who took a hung curve way back in the 4th.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Preston Tucker had a tough first at-bat to his Reds career. He ripped the first pitch long down the first base line, but it just hooked foul. Then, he smoked a liner but right at the second baseman, who then doubled off Phil Ervin at first to end the inning.
It all worked out for Tucker though as he singled in the first run in the 7th.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ The Reds 7th inning started with six consecutive hits, bringing in four runs and making this whole ordeal a bit more interesting. The good vibes didn’t last.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Missed cutoffs: Suarez’ second inning throw went wide left; Phil Ervin slung the ball right over Scooter Gennett’s head allowing a run in the 6th.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ TOOTBLANs: Curt Casali tried to take home after a Jose Peraza swining bunt in the 7th and was promptly gunned down for a rally-killing double play. In other not-too-quick-Reds news, Joey Votto was forced out at second in the eighth following a Suarez bloop single. It wasn’t so much a TOOTBLAN as Votto is just very, very slow, but still it looked bad.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ It didn’t amount to anything, but Scooter and Peraza forgot to cover second base on a Victor Reyes steal in the fourth. Jim Riggleman did not seem pleased in the dugout.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ When the Reds pulled Sal Romano, they had one out in the sixth. By the time the Reds had one out in the seventh, they were using their FOURTH reliever. Wandy Peralta, Michael Lorenzen, and Amir Garrett all had less than stellar days.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Phil Ervin has not had a great time here in the Motor City. Maybe it’s just the nerves that come with starting for a MLB team, but boy does he need to figure it out.
NOT SO RANDOM THOUGHTS
Ã¢â‚¬â€ I liked the decision to send Romano out in the 6th even though it was his third time through the order. He had just breezed through the 5th and wasn’t too up there with pitches. Riggleman obviously gave him the quick hook once he allowed a baserunner, but not a bad decision at all.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Remember our old friend Rosell Herrera? Well Rany Jazayerli has some nice things to say about him over at The Athletic:
“Herrera is probably never going to hit enough to be an everyday player, but if he can show some defensive chops on the infield as well as the outfield, well, a switch-hitter who can play seven positions and run well doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have to hit much to carve out a nice career as a utility guy.”
Seems like a guy the Reds could’ve found a use for if they really wanted to.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Curt Casali has been such a welcome addition to this team. His 2-RBI double in the 7th once again showed that he’s a guy who can hit Major League pitching while calling a good game from behind the dish. Savvy move by the Reds FO.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ The Reds go to Washington next to play the Nationals who are somehow a completely dysfunctional team but still winning games 25-4? Riddle me that.