The Reds (52-69) will look to end the four-game losing streak as they start a weekend series with the San Francisco Giants (61-61) tonight at Great American Ball Park. First pitch is at 7:10 ET.

The Giants come to town trying to stay in the NL West race at 5.5 games back of first place. San Francisco is 5-5 in the last 10, and is desperate for wins to keep pace with the three teams ahead of them. With a .699 team OPS, the Giants are near the bottom of the National League in batting, but are middle of the pack in pitching with a team ERA of 3.94.

The Reds faced the Giants in May, and had just come off a four game sweep of the Los Angeles Dodgers only to promptly lose two of three at AT&T Park.

Starting Pitchers

Pitcher IP ERA xFIP K% BB%
Anthony DeSclafani 66.2 4.46 4.15 21.5% 6.6%
Casey Kelly 130.0 4.78 4.72 18.4% 6.6%

**Kelly’s above stats are from Triple-A Sacramento.

Anthony DeSclafani by far has been the best starting pitcher for the Reds the last two times through the rotation. In each of his last two starts, he’s gone seven innings. He’s allowed just one run in those two starts and has struck out 11 (nine in his last start vs. Arizona) while walking only one. He’s looked like the pitcher he was in 2016, before the injuries.

If there’s a negative to his season, it’s that he’s been a victim of the home run ball. DeSclafani has given up 15 home runs this season in only 66.2 innings. For comparison, in 2016, he gave up 16 in 123.1 innings. However, he has surrendered exactly zero home runs in his last two starts against the Diamondbacks and the Nationals, so maybe he’s improving in that category.

DeSclafani has faced Andrew McCutchen the most, from McCutchen’s days with the Pirates. He’s handled McCutchen fairly well. Brandon Belt and Hunter Pence both have home runs off DeSclafani.

desclafani vs giants

Dereck Rodriguez was supposed to start for the Giants, but went on the disabled list yesterday with a hamstring strain supposedly suffered in the altercation with the Dodgers Tuesday night. Instead, rookie Casey Kelly will be starting. Kelly will be making his second start for the Giants after being called up to pitch against the Pirates last Saturday. Kelly also just pitched 1.1 innings out of the bullpen Wednesday at Dodger Stadium.

In his very short time with the Giants, Kelly has given up four hits and one run in 6.1 innings. At Triple-A Sacramento this season, he has both an ERA and a FIP nearing five. He’s very much a fly ball pitcher, with his FB% being 38%, but he didn’t give up a crazy number of home runs at Triple-A (18 in 130 innings).

He’s a 28-year-old journeyman who was drafted out of high school by the Red Sox at the end of the first round of the 2008 draft. Kelly has four main pitches–fastball, curveball, change up, and slider–but throws his fastball almost 50 percent of the time. His velocity tops out in the low 90s for his fastball and the high 80s for his breaking stuff.

The only Red who has faced Kelly is Eugenio Suarez, and he is 0-for-1 against him.


With an off day for both teams yesterday, both bullpens should be fully rested. Cody Reed would be the only pitcher who might not be available since he pitched 3.2 innings Wednesday.


The Reds lineup was posted early today. You can find the Giants lineup here.

-Billy Hamilton leads off for the first time in a long time, Scooter Gennett moves to the three spot, Tucker Barnhart is playing first base (?!), and Phillip Ervin is not in the lineup again. I think that about covers it.

News and Notes

-This is not the news you want to hear today. It is entirely Ryan Madson’s fault.

-The Giants starting pitcher Casey Kelly is the son of Reds bench coach Pat Kelly.

-Ken Rosenthal posted a very good Q&A with Dusty Baker on The Athletic this morning.

-I wrote about Phillip Ervin and why the Reds should be giving him more playing time.


78 Responses

  1. WVRedlegs

    Was looking forward to Rodriguez pitching for the Giants with him being Pudge’s son. But isn’t Casey Kelly the son of Reds bench coach Pat Kelly? Just as interesting a sideline.
    The Reds are 4-11 since July 31 and are entering a very tough stretch of games. Got to get 2 of 3 from SF Gigantors.

  2. Jack

    Wow! What a lineup! That’s about as nice as I can be.

  3. Sliotar

    1) Havoc! and his 68 wRC+, 30% worse than league average, and a mighty .305 OBP is back as the leadoff hitter.

    2) Herrera and Aquino are sitting. This allows Riggleman to have Preston Tucker in a lefty vs. righty matchup. Tucker is 101 wRC+, 0.1 WAR, 28 years old…definition of AAAA guy.

    For a moment, forget the injuries and the hot takes of Ryan Madson replacing some Steeler as Cincinnati’s new no. 1 sports enemy…

    Does anyone around still think the rebuild is over in 6 weeks, given those points above?
    There is gross mismanagement with the lineup, both in the short term and long term.

    Either Riggleman is incompetent, or more likely, pandering to the owner to get the gig full-time and top off his retirement fund.

    Go Redlegs (although my faith is shaken with roster management like this).

  4. Shchi Cossack

    Votto makes a trip to the DL. Under the circumstances, that’s a good move, albeit a week late of course.

    The best on-base hitter on the Reds roster goes on the DL and of course Riggleman replaces Votto in the top of the lineup with Hamilton. Not only is Hamilton starting every game, but he’s now leading off and getting the most PA in the lineup. Meanwhile, Ervin and Herrera continue to accumulate bench time rather than starting every game. I guess we can now include Aquino in that select group.

    I’m desperately trying to maintain an even keel this season with Riggleman’s managing, NK’s and DW’s ineptitude to do anything positive and BC’s counter-productive interference, while awaiting the off-season moves that will turn this unmitigated disaster of a rebuild into a rousing success. I really don’t have any confidence that anyone in BC’s organization will demonstrate anything to counter the image of the worst run, most inept organization in MLB.

    • lwblogger2

      Sounds about right all the way around I’d say.

    • vegastypo

      There were a few front office moves announced, but I don’t know much about the people involved. Any indication of a change in direction with the moves ??

    • roger garrett

      Nothing to add except they are still my team.After 50+ years I have no other place to go now but my grandson would do better with this team and he is all of 7 years old

  5. lwblogger2

    As for the lineup, I really don’t know what to say at this point. Barnhart at 1B. He’s never played there professionally and probably not since he was a kid, if at all. Why not Hererra at 1B since he’s at least played some corner IF at 3B?

    Why no Ervin again? Riggleman wants the LH bats against the RH pitcher? Same number of LH bats if Barnhart is behind the plate (after a day off yesterday) and Hererra is at 1B.

    What about Hamilton, Peraza 1 and 2? Yes, Peraza’s OBP is improving as is his walk rate. Peraza could perhaps leadoff. Barnhart could hit 2nd. Suarez and Gennett 3 and 4. Tucker 5, Casali 6, Williams 7, Disco 8, Hamilton 9.

    I don’t know. I don’t know why some guys are playing and others aren’t. I don’t know why the order is what it is? I don’t make the lineups but the guys getting paid to do so have put this garbage out there. Tonight may be one of those few nights where I’m home and still just skip watching the Reds game.

  6. docproctor

    I don’t even know why I watch this shit anymore.
    But I will.

    • big5ed

      You can’t switch favorite teams any more than you can switch mothers. This is our lot in life, so we might as well do it with a twinkle in our eyes.

  7. Shchi Cossack

    A Friday night game at home for the Reds. There will be no buses and caravans from San Francisco making inroads to Cincinnati, unlike the fans from Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Chicago or St. Louis. Any wagers on the over/under for actual fannies-in-the-seats attendance for tonight’s game?

      • Sliotar

        Remember…Dick Williams hinted that the money available this winter would be affected by attendance during the rest of the season.

        Based on the crowd shots I have seen so far tonight, I guess I should give up hopes of the Reds signing Patrick Corbin to 8 years @ $25 million per year?

      • Jack

        I could have told you when he said it that he was taking the blame off the Front office. This way they can say well the fans didn’t show so we have no money. 10 year rebuild.

  8. doofus

    I wonder if the Williams brothers and Castellini get along? Could there be a division between the two families? Did the Williams’ plant Dick into a position in the organization because they saw Castellini brothers getting positions?

    Could these two factions be at odds to the point that the front office has become impotent? It could be that the Williams along with other owners have a large enough quorum to insert themselves into operations, but not enough b/c BC has majority control. Just a thought. I can’t believe that an organization can be so inept.

    • Seat101

      For the most part, as far as I can tell, the business side (the Castellini family) and the baseball side (the Williams family) seem to be working very well together.

      Yes, the rumors of a big difference of opinion over Hamilton/Phillips seem too strong to ignore. But they are rumors, not documented facts. And even if true provide little or no evidence of anything near to a “feud.”

  9. roger garrett

    Maybe Riggs picked the lineup and batting order out of a hat.Yes that’s it.I knew there had to a reason for this madness.My grandson just told me I was just silly cause they don’t do that in little league.

  10. Jack

    Maybe Riggleman made the worst lineup he could so Pat Kelly’s son could win a game. Wouldn’t put it past this circus caravan.

  11. vegastypo

    Marty and Brantley were talking in pregame about how Barnhart was working during the day today taking grounders, and more than that, learning when to chase field balls and when to cover first base. When he figures that out, maybe he can let Votto in on the answer.

    • Seat101

      I do hate to sound like a broken record, but with Gennett’s limited range, Votto has to cover more territory.

      Just think back to when someone else was playing second base… Joey didn’t have to worry about a second baseman who couldn’t go to his left

      • VaRedsFan

        Joey did it to BP, ALL THE TIME. The other night, Joey took 4 steps to his right and dove….while Scooter was on one knee waiting to field it.

    • Phil

      Oh my!! Bad mouthing the “1st ballot hall of famer”?

  12. VaRedsFan

    So Billy defies the odds and gets a hit, so Peraza naturally swings at the 1st pitch

      • Jack

        He is becoming a liability on base. Havoc my @$#

    • Seat101

      The success rate of rise it swinging at the first pitch while good – is not 100%. It happens

      • Jack

        The problem with Peraza batting after Hamilton is that Hamilton isn’t stealing bases at a high rate this year. And Peraza is a free swinger who will not take to many pitches. This is another Riggleman mismanagement.

    • greenmtred

      Not to pick, but that gives him a 10 game hitting streak. And the odds are against anyone getting a hit in any given at bat.

  13. roger garrett

    No runs on 3 hits with a pick off and all on 13 pitches.Only this team could do that.We just can’t lose we have to look just awful in doing it.I thought nothing would top the ninth inning on Wednesday but we just did.

    • Seat101

      I think you’re borrowing trouble here. Or one out into the bottom of the second

      • roger garrett

        I hope your right and most of the time when I throw them under the bus they score a bunch.

      • Jack

        You put this lineup in 10 times they will lose 9 of them. It helps they are going against a rookie pitcher who is basically a reliever.

      • Seat101

        I know what you mean! Every time I say Jose Perez it should not be batting in the top half of the order he goes two for five.

  14. vegastypo

    Riggleman apparently hinting that hard feelings with the Nationals aren’t settled. The fact that Votto had to go on the DL probably makes this a ‘retaliatory’ incident.

  15. VaRedsFan

    A pair of catchers produce the 1st run. Nice

  16. docproctor

    There is a whole lot to like about Casali.

    • vegastypo

      Is his offense (granted, a small sample size) unusual for him? Why would Tampa part with him, just because he’s 29?

    • Seat101

      Another plus from the Harvey trade

  17. Sliotar

    2 times Disco had a sacrifice opportunity

    2 Ks


    Glad this team has really cleaned up its act on stuff like that and TOOTBLANs in the Riggleman era.

    • Jack

      As soon as you say that , Peraza and Scooter both cover the bag on a steal. I can hear Vince Lombardi now ” What the hell is going on out there?”

  18. vegastypo

    Speedy Mr. Peraza is out by 10 feet. Only a poor tag made that the least bit debatable. I swear Peraza always does something to let me down.

    • Jack

      He might but at the end of the year he very well could be leading this team in average. Who would of thunk?

    • Seat101

      Give a dog a bad name…

  19. TomN

    At least Disco is pitching a nice ballgame, though I’m only following it on sportsline.

  20. roger garrett

    Reds have 9 singles a double and two walks but only one run.You can’t beat a high school team by hitting singles.

  21. TomN

    Is it time for another Riggleman double-switch?

  22. TomN

    Most valuable pitcher on the team? Hughes?

  23. VaRedsFan

    Wasn’t a fan of removing Disco after striking out a man, but it worked out. I’m so glad the didn’t trade Hughes.

  24. TomN

    I’m surprised Hughes & Hernandez are still on the team. Surely other teams are noticing how good they are pitching.

    • Jack

      Looks like Disco is taking that 4th spot in the rotation next year behind Dixon, Ervin and Blandino.

      • roger garrett

        Yep I think its a done deal.

  25. TomN

    Finally! We get a Riggleman double-switch. Life is good.

  26. roger garrett

    I get the feeling the Giants will have to just give this game to us because I don’t see us winning it.Eleven hits and ten are singles.

    • VaRedsFan

      Scooter and Tucker have doubles.
      Maybe Dixon pr Casali can run into one here

      • roger garrett

        Your right I missed Scooter’s double.

  27. TomN

    Acc to cbssports, it said Iglesias seemed to be hurt and the trainer was out. All of a sudden, Crawford grounded out to first. Did Crawford just throw the ball in the air and hit a grounder to Barnart while Iglesias was being checked out?

    • VaRedsFan

      Threw a few warmups an continued. Looked like a back twinge.

  28. Jazzmanbbfan

    First base ump needs to get his eyes checked.

  29. Jeff Reed

    A game the Reds should win. Let’s get a run.

  30. VaRedsFan

    You guys are silly…Riggs saved Ervin to be a late game sub

  31. Jack

    Riggleman– “Thanks Philip . Now get back on the bench.”