The Nationals swept the Reds to open the season. Since then, the Nats have won just three more games than the Reds and have a losing record. On Opening Day, Max Schurzer (6 IP, 0 ER) out-dueled Homer Bailey (6 IP, 1 ER). Tonight was a continuation of that dominance.
The Reds have now lost three in a row and are 5-8 since the All-Star break. They play three more games this weekend in Washington.
If you blinked, say sometime around the trade deadline, you might have missed the Reds Winning Culture.Ã‚Â
Cincinnati Reds 4 (48-61)Ã‚Â Ã¢â‚¬Â¢Ã‚Â Washington Nationals 10 (55-53)
Tyler Mahle turned in another poor start. After a 1-2-3 first inning, he gave up six runs in a 36-pitch second, which he didn’t finish. The Reds are using a 6-man rotation, so you’d think they’d be watching closely for opportunities to remedy that. Mahle seems due for a trip to Louisville. He’s only 23 years old and made fewer than 10 starts at the AAA level. Nothing wrong with taking a little pressure off and refreshing his fundamentals. Mahle was more than solid through the month of June and still is promising.
Even with a Mahle demotion, as long as Matt Harvey makes every fifth start, there’s no room for the Reds to give Robert Stephenson or Cody Reed opportunity. Innings limits aren’t going to force the club’s hand with Luis Castillo or Sal Romano. Neither is on pace to eclipse their total IP last year by more than 20 innings. That’s the opportunity cost associated with Harvey.
Keury Mella relieved Mahle with bases loaded in the 2nd inning. Mella was called up to the Reds last Friday and hadn’t pitched yet. He was San Francisco’s #1 pitching prospect when the Reds sent Mike Leake to the Giants. Mella was the headliner of that trade, but the Reds also picked up Adam Duvall. Tonight, Mella walked the first batter he faced, forcing in a run. But then he pitched pretty well. He completed 4.1 innings giving up just one run. He did walk four and struck out two.
Raisel Iglesias came on to pitch the bottom of the 8th with the Reds trailing by 5 runs because he needed the work. He gave up two homers and three runs. Always, always be trading closers.
Eugenio Suarez blasted his 25th homer in the 4th inning with Scooter Gennett on base, accounting for the Reds first two runs. In the 5th inning the Two TuckersÃ¢â€žÂ¢ were on base with two outs, but manager Jim Riggleman decided to let Mella bat instead of pinch hitting. Mella struck out against Schurzer. Newly acquired Preston Tucker lined a Schurzer fastball into the right-center gap, prompting Chris Welsh to say Tucker “looks like he can hit a fastball.”Ã‚Â
Jose Peraza’s slump continued. He was batting .208/.255/.313 since the All Star break. He was 1-for-5 tonight, with a 2-run double in the 9th. Throw in a dropped foul pop-up, a bounced throw to first base, short range and consecutive games where second base has gone uncovered on a stolen base attempt (those could be Scooter Gennett’s fault), and I’m moving Peraza back into the “not quite proven himself” category. Not saying anything near give up on him. He had a strong first half of the year. But in my mind, he’s also not a proven major league shortstop yet. Continued watching required.
Riggleman Returns to DCÃ‚Â Washington D.C. is where Jim Riggleman grew up, delivered the newspaper, caddied at the country club and walked outÃ‚Â in the middle of the season on his team and big league manager’s job over money.Ã‚Â
Suarez BlowsÃ‚Â Hat tip to our Wes Jenkins for spotting and correctly grading this terrific article about Eugenio Suarez by Jared Diamond:
Eugenio Suarez, man of intrigue, MVP candidate, and bubble blower extraordinaire. Also subject of the best thing written about the Reds all seasonhttps://t.co/T48fueC692
— wesjenkins (@_wesjenks) August 2, 2018
It contains multitudes:
- The phrase “sticky pink wads” in the second paragraph,
- A public health message – kids, chew sugar-free gum,Ã‚Â
- An interview with a Guinness World Record holder from Alabama, and
- Finally a clear explanation of BABIP (beard absent bubble if popped).Ã‚Â
India Back In Lineup Jonathan India, the Reds #1 pick in the most recent amateur baseball draft, was back in the starting lineup for the Dayton Dragons tonight. India was batting third and playing 3B. He was held out of yesterday’s game with a contusion (“boo-boo” is the technical term) on his right hand after being hit with a line drive (Doug Gray reporting). India was promoted to the Dragons on Monday. He was hitting .267/.443/.483 for three Reds affiliates going into tonight’s game. India singled and walked tonight.
Cody Reed Sparkles LHP Cody Reed came within an out of a complete game shutout for AAA Louisville. Reed gave up just four hits (two of those in the 9th inning), walked one and struck out 10. A lot of attention has rightly been put on it being time for Stephenson to get a shot at starting. Reed’s in line, too. In Reed’s previous two games he’d struck out 16 and walked just one.Ã‚Â
Back When E.D. Meant #44 Fabulous video of Eric Davis getting good wood on the ball for a walk-off homer and reaching the 30/30 milestone (on August 2!):
#OTD in #Reds history, 1987: Eric Davis becomes the seventh player in MLB history to hit 30 home runs and steal 30 bases in one season by drilling his 30th homer in the bottom of the 11th to give the Reds a 5-4 walk-off win over the Giants. pic.twitter.com/Li0V1PL33t
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) August 2, 2018
[Header Photo Credit: Kareem Elgazzar, Cincinnati Enquirer]