Emotions ran high during last nightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s doubleheader nightcap in Washington, D.C. Bryce Harper got hit in the knee by an Austin Brice 84-mph-curveball, and later, Jesus Reyes hit the first batter he faced in the majors, Spencer Kieboom. Pretty unlikely that either had any intent.
But in the eighth inning, Phillies reliever Ryan Madson hit Joey Votto squarely in the right knee with a 96 mph fastball Ã¢â‚¬â€œ apparently a revival of the Ã¢â‚¬Å“eye for an eyeÃ¢â‚¬Â mindset of years past. Perhaps it would be more accurately called a Ã¢â‚¬Å“knee for a knee.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Nice throw bitch, you won’t square up though Ã°Å¸â€™Âª pic.twitter.com/yWy7MnWVvy
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Joey Votto (@EvilJoeyVotto) August 5, 2018
Joey Votto was not happy about getting plunked…
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Todd (@bitterRedsfan) August 5, 2018
I can read Joey Votto’s lips.
Joey Votto pulling his best Nate Diaz right now.
Ã¢â‚¬â€ Doug Gray (@dougdirt24) August 5, 2018
Votto was irate after being hit and spewed insults at Madson that canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t be transcribed here in a family-oriented blog. It will be very interesting to see how much, if any, of the anger spills over into todayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 1:35 p.m. Eastern time finale of the four-game series at Nationals Park. The Reds are hoping for a series split.
July was the month when the light bulb apparently began to glow for Castillo. In five July starts, Castillo allowed only 7 earned runs in 28 innings, striking out 25, and walking only 4. Of particular note is he allowed only one home run in July after surrendering 18 in the first three months of the season.
After his most impressive start of the year, last weekÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s seven shutout innings against the Phillies, published reports indicated that pitching coach Danny Darwin has been working on CastilloÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s arm angle during pitch delivery. What Reds management and fans are looking for from Castillo is consistency in the form of how he pitched in July. When that is realized, Castillo will be ready to take the step that all in Redleg Nation are hoping he takes, and that is into the role of Ã¢â‚¬Å“stopperÃ¢â‚¬Â and Ã¢â‚¬Å“ace.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Like many pitchers, Roark runs hot and cold. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s coming off two very good starting performances, allowing just one earned run in 15 innings. That was preceded by three starts in which he allowed 17 earned runs in 16 innings. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a lot like a box of chocolates. You never know what youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re going to get.
How about Reyes last night? Pretty impressive major league debut with two scoreless innings in a mop-up role. As a result of throwing two innings, he may or may not be available today. All others in the bullpen crew should be available if needed.
|SS Jose Peraza||RF Adam Eaton|
|LF Phillip Ervin||LF Juan Soto|
|2B Scooter Gennett||3B Anthony Rendon|
|3B Eugenio Suarez||CF Bryce Harper|
|RF Mason Williams||2B Daniel Murphy|
|C Tucker Barnhart||1B Matt Adams|
|1B Brandon Dixon||C Matt Wieters|
|P Luis Castillo||P Tanner Roark|
|CF Billy Hamilton||SS Wilmer Difo|
It was not clear at the time this post went live if Votto’s absence from the lineup is in any way connected to the events that occurred late in Saturday night’s game.
News and Notes
Very, very interesting read from yesterdayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s LA Times: Ã¢â‚¬Å“You hear a lot about major league prospects Ã¢â‚¬â€œ but most will never be heard from again.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The storyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s focal point: Ã¢â‚¬Å“In his eight years as the DodgersÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ general manager, (Ned) Colletti made 44 trades, sending 71 players out of town Ã¢â‚¬â€œ not all of them minor leaguers, to be sure. But out of the dozens of minor leaguers Colletti traded, how many came back to burn the Dodgers? One.Ã¢â‚¬Â
That was Carlos Santana, traded to the Indians in 2008, and now with the Phillies.
Author Bill Shaikin maintains: Ã¢â‚¬Å“The goal should not be to hoard minor leaguers. The goal should be to identify the very best ones, then consider trading any of the others for players that could help the major league team.Ã¢â‚¬Â
In fairness, it should be pointed out that the article was written from the perspective of a perennially contending team, as opposed to one that is in a rebuilding cycle. The player acquisition strategies are obviously very different.
I highly recommend this read to anyone who spends time regularly here at Redleg Nation.