The Short Version: Luis Castillo strikes out a career-high 11 as the Reds shut out the stupid Cardinals in their dumb little ballpark.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (58-78) 4 10 0
St. Louis Cardinals (76-60) 0 2 0
W: Castillo (8-11) L: Poncedeleon (0-1)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score

The Good
–Luis Castillo was magnificent, allowing just two hits and no runs over 6.2 innings and striking out a career-high 11 hitters. After surrendering a leadoff single, Castillo retired 15 of the next 16 Cardinals to reach the plate.

This is the Luis Castillo we were expecting to see this year.

–Scooter Gennett and Eugenio Suarez had two hits; Scooter scored a run and Geno drove in two. Tucker Barnhart had two hits and an RBI. Joey Votto doubled, scored one and drove in one. Scott Schebler doubled and walked.

–David Hernandez and Raisel Iglesias pitched no-hit, no-run ball for the last two and a third to seal the victory.

The Bad
–It’s all good.

Not-So-Random Thoughts
–Three game losing streak: over. That’s two wins in Cincinnati’s last ten games. #PositiveMomentum

–The game was scoreless until the top of the fourth. With one out, Jose Peraza doubled to right center. Votto then doubled, breaking the scoreless tie. Scooter singled and, with runners on the corners, Suarez doubled, scoring Votto and Gennett. Reds 3, Cardinals 0.

–Cincinnati collected their final tally in the seventh. Schebler led off with a double to right and, one out later, Barnhart singled him home.

–Anthony DeSclafani will pitch tomorrow as the Reds try to grab a series against St. Louis on the road.

48 Responses

  1. Sasha09

    It amazes me how the Reds have a game like last night and turn around and play so well like tonight.
    I’m sure most of it is because of their pitching.Homer Bailey and Jackson Stephens (just to name two) need to go ASAP! Am I right that the Reds are dead last (#30 out of 30 teams) in ERA but #3 in hitting?

  2. Sliotar

    Good sports day (take them when you can get them)…

    -Reds 2-hit Devil Magic before a sell-out in enemy territory

    -Ohio State wins

    -Bearcats (!!!) Going for it late, getting TD to win at UCLA

    -Michigan loses (only time in my life I root for Notre Dame, in any sport)

    • Jim Walker

      I found myself (almost) wanting the guys with the yellow stripes on their helmets to pull it out. But then I’m the same as you, I rare or never root for either of those teams to do anything but get ingloriously defeated.

      BTW the those guys were reminding me of the Reds down the stretch. They’d had trouble moving the ball all night with #2 at QB then when he had to leave #10 was moving the team but the coaching staff couldn’t seem to wait to get #2 back into the game. It was more that fitting that #2 fumbled away their last chance.

    • reaganspad

      I was at the OSU-OSU game. Ohio fans are really great. was greeted with a smile and a beer at every tailgate we walked through. Never made it to the last tailgate we were trying to get to because people we had just met were just so dang nice.

      I of course was sporting my College World Series championship shirt. I was finding common ground at all the tailgaters sharing my love for the Reds. i was told that Columbus is about 70-30 Reds country. I could understand that number for the Browns. Then one guy really helped me understand that Cincy being so close to UK is really more SEC country. That many from Cincy go to UK. He loved it cause he gets to see Alabama play when he visits his daughter in the fall. That Columbus was majority from the north. that made complete sense to me.

      Looking forward to Castillo’s game on the DVR when I get home

  3. Sliotar

    When you see this Castillo performance, IMO, it’s why you give him a second look, third look, maybe more looks than he deserves to stick in the rotation.

    SP is so expensive, the Reds don’t develop SPs, and for this night, at least, he pitched and had the demeanor of a top of rotation ace.

    Awesome to watch.

    • Jim Walker

      I believe Castillo has pitched well enough this year to hold his spot unless and until somebody beats him out of it as opposed to just moving him out to give somebody a shot. It would be great if he could consistently pitch anything approaching the way he did tonight though.

    • Hotto4Votto

      You’re right about SP being expensive on the open market. It’s also extremely risky. From what we can recall about prospect currency it’s pretty expensive to go that route as well. The Pirates paid quite a bit to get Archer at the deadline. The Reds paid a lot to get Latos in 2012. Developing your own SP is the best route, it’s just easier said than done.

      I looked up the top 5 (according to MLBTR) SP FA’s for the past two seasons.

      Darvish: Signed 6 years $126m. $25m for 2018, has been worth -0.1 WAR in 8 games (currently on DL)
      Arrietta: Signed 3 years $75m. $30m for 2018, has been worth 3 WAR.
      Lynn: Signed 1 year $12m. Has been worth 0.7 WAR.
      Cobb: Signed 4 year $48m. $14m in 2018 with 0.8 WAR
      Sabathia: Signed 1 year $10m. He has been worth 2.4 WAR this season.

      Helickson: Signed 1 year $11m. Was worth -0.8 WAR in 2017.
      Nova: Signed 3 year $26m. Paid base salaries of $15.5m for 2017-18 in which he was worth 2.2 and 0.8 WAR respectively.
      Hill: Signed 3 year $48m. Paid $28m in 2017-18 with 2.2 and 1.2 WAR respectively.
      J. Hammel: Signed 2 year $18m deal with (12/2) option/buyout. Has produced 1.4 and -1.4 WAR in 2017-18 respectively.
      Wood: Signed 3 year $17m deal. Paid $10.5m for 2017-18 and produced -0.6, and -1.6 WAR.

      According to Fangraphs, the value of 1 WAR in 2017 was $10.5m. The estimated value of 1 WAR in 2018 was $11.1m. Using that as a barometer of value it appears that of the top 10 FA starting pitchers signed in the last two offseasons, only Jake Arrietta, CC Sabathia provided value this past offseason. In 2017 all three of Ivan Nova, Rich Hill, and Jason Hammel out performed their contract in the first year. Nova has slid back this season, Hill has remained solid in his second season when healthy, and Hammel pretty much canceled out any value he might of provided in his first season.

      4 of the top 10 pitchers have provided surplus value to this point in their contract. Two of those guys (Nova and Sabathia) signed team-friendly deals. Considering how quickly an injury can make a good deal look bad in an instant, it’s pretty risky business to go out and sign starting pitching.

      • da bear

        Hammel did not provide the Royals any value last year. He was provided a lead numerous times and promptly blew those leads. Had Castillo pitched last year in those games for KC instead of Hammel, Castillo would have probably won 15 games. Hammel was money in the bank to bet against.

  4. Mike Kelsch

    I just caught the WLWT 11 news. Not once did the sports guy mention the Reds’ game. They had the score stroll by once. I hope Castellini stayed up to see that.

    • Jim Walker

      In addition to the UC win, didn’t FCC draw 25K and also clinch a league playoff spot tonight? That would make the Reds no better than third banana.

      • Jazzmanbbfan

        I was at the FCC match and you are correct on both counts Jim.

  5. Mike Kelsch

    Great night anyway. Sorry to be bitter.

  6. cfd3000

    Just a solid game all around. The only complaint I could offer was Barnhart being too eager on a 3-0 pitch with the bases loaded. But then he had hits in each of his last two at bats. Somehow the Reds and Castillo have to figure out how to put this version of Castillo on the hill more often. He was dominant and if he can pitch like that he’s Cueto 2.0. And it couldn’t have happened to a nicer opponent!

    • Colorado Red

      Not all that different then a lot of his starts, with the exception of not throwing up a meatball or two.
      Several times, there is a HR, followed by 12 straight, a walk and another HR.
      If he can cut the long balls down to about 12 or so, he is a #1 ir #2,

      • da bear

        Often an error or poor defensive play not counted as an error created extra pitches and extra runs charged against Castillo too. The infield has been atrocious, the corner infielders not so good.

  7. Shchi Cossack

    Why in the Toccata and Fugue did Riggleman pull Castillo with 2 outs in the 7th inning? I suppose he couldn’t have Castillo surpassing Harvey’s one 7.0 inning outing with two 7.0 inning outings by Castillo, thereby risking a bruised ego by Harvey’s and eliminating the Reds chance of signing Harvey to a FA contract.

    • Hotto4Votto

      Because Riggleman’s main objective is to win games. HIs objective is to build his resume, to build a winning culture for Big Bob, to carry forward the mythological concept of positive momentum between baseball seasons. He’s not there to develop the young players or to challenge them. Neither Price or Riggleman has managed for anything but to keep their jobs and make the big guy upstairs happy. Neither had an eye for development. It’s probably part of the reason the young, touted, stable of Reds pitchers hasn’t developed much over the past few years.

    • greenmtred

      Wasn’t he at 104 pitches, or something like that? His velocity was up, too–97 and 98. Abundant caution.

      • Hotto4Votto

        The 100 pitch mark is an arbitrary number. I’ve read studies that have shown most pitchers can go 110-120 pitches without showing any more signs of arm fatigue. The more important thing to consider when dealing with fatigue is how many pitches per inning and how stressful those innings are. Since he was in the seventh and hadn’t had any really stressful, pitch count heavy innings he likely wasn’t in a danger zone to face another batter or two.

      • Colorado Red

        I Also remember when Johnny used to go over 110 pitches, they would have to hold him back a day or so.

      • VaRedsFan

        It’s my biggest pet peeve with today’s game. The arbitrary 100 pitch mark.
        All of the great pitchers of today routinely go 110+. Allow guys to get thru the lineup 3 times. Strive to be great, not just mediocre.

        Riggleman’s quick hook routinely ends with the reliever coming in and given up the starter’s earned runs. The quick hooks also don’t allow the starters to grow and learn.

      • greenmtred

        I don’t disagree, generally, about pitch counts, but he probably–along with most young pitchers–has not often gone far past 100, and if 110-120 is where fatigue commonly shows up, he would only, as you say, face another batter or two anyway. Maybe he should have, but it could be argued that he left the game with an unambiguously successful start to show for it (I noted the appreciation shown him by teammates and Riggleman), and that has value.

      • Hotto4Votto

        Not a big difference, but the 110-120 pitch count didn’t show a difference in fatigue, so after 120 is where there starts to be a correlation to pitch count and fatigue. I do think Castillo probably left feeling pretty good, and he should have because he pitched awesome. At the same time, pitchers are never going to take the next step forward unless they’re challenged and given opportunity to do so. One or two more batters wouldn’t have hurt Castillo and wouldn’t have lost the game right there. Since it wasn’t a 1-2 run game it would have been a nice opportunity to see if Castillo could have completed the inning without even risking giving up the lead.

        In my opinion the only reason he was taken out was because Riggleman wanted to win the game and didn’t want to risk Castillo giving up runs to the next batter. It’s the same reason Iglesias came on in the 8th in a non-save situation. I want to see development take place over wins in a lost season. That’s not going to be the case when the manager is managing for his next contract. The interim tag should have provided the Reds with an easy avenue to placing development over winning. This hasn’t been the case, and it probably has something to do with Riggleman and Big Bob’s special relationship.

      • lwblogger2

        Yes, pulling a guy from out outing where the outcome of his outing is a guaranteed success, does have value. It’s also something to build on. I bang on Riggleman all the time but I thought he made the right move there.

  8. Indy Red Man

    I swear the Reds are about 10-3 in games where I didn’t watch a single pitch. Good for Castillo….he really really needed it. I don’t know about tonite, but his velocity was up to 2017 standards (97-99) last time out vs the Cubs. He just lacked command. He needs to work on something else vs lefties, but atleast its a spark of hope. Reed has been a pleasant surprise too.

    Overall though…I just have to let the Reds go until they cut Bailey loose. I love them, but if you don’t stand for something then you’ll fall for anything. Would you keep coming to work if a coworker was destroying products in the break room and driving customers to the competition, but yet always kept his job? I said this in March….if the Reds don’t have 5 better then Homer then something is wrong. He’s not getting his B- minus game back. Never! I will watch closely to see if Scooter can stay on this heater and get the Reds a batting title!! Markakis has faded but the Reds put Yelich right in the mix. It will be interesting!

  9. Scott Gennett

    Looking into 2019, it looks like only two starters are set to join the rotation in Disco and Castillo, and a big maybe for Mahle. Therefore, unless FO is able to trade for and/or FA signing of two capable starting pitchers, we should expect, more or less, the very same results.

    • Reaganspad

      At this point you have to invite Robert Stephenson to camp next year as a starter and hope that between offseason yoga and meditation and a new manager you catch lightning and harness it

      Too good of a season at AAA for us not to take another shot and with 3 spots open, I like Stephenson a lot more than any Jimmy Haines or Paul Wilson we may sign

      • Colorado Red

        Several people we have to look at in ST (not the best place, but the only one left)
        Bob Steve, Reed, Sims, etc.
        LIke to see some of them pitch now, vs Boom Boom Homer.

      • Jim Walker

        Part of the puzzle with Stephenson is figuring out exactly when his shoulder became an issue and how that impacted his performance. One of the 1st things many noticed when he got to Cincy was that his velocity was significantly down and he couldn’t spot his fastball which suggests he was already hurting. He was so dominant at AAA for 2 months that it is hard to believe he was the same pitcher over that period as he was with the Reds. Talk to him and go back and look at what ever video and charting records they have to try and find out when this began to happen.

    • CI3J

      Reed also might hold some promise, depending on how his next few starts go.

    • Klugo

      As long as BC is in there making all the decisions, its a crapshoot. The comments that Riggleman made about BC in the Fay article have made me as frustrated and apathetic as ever. I’m ready to throw my hands up and give up on this organization.

  10. Jeff Reed

    Quite a night for Castillo in the Cardinals dumb packed ballpark.

  11. roger garrett

    Reds play throw under the bus and anoint games with there pitchers.Some like Castillo/Romano have over 40 starts in MLB and we have seen them be really good from time to time and have hope they get it.If we hadn’t wasted 2017 and stuck with Homer and then Harvey we would have more some good some bad on other guys to go on.Bob,Reed and others should have 40+ starts by now but because they don’t we will have to sort again next year.Experience turns in to being consistent and only way to get it is to pitch.

    • greenmtred

      Doug Gray said an interesting thing about this, to the effect that sometimes they’ve seen enough and know what a pitcher is.

      • VaRedsFan

        Absolutely. RS doesn’t need 40 starts to know if he has what it takes. There is talent there, but if the coaches/psychologist can’t seem to pull it out of him.

      • roger garrett

        I believe that can happen but both Reed and Bob started 20 games at Louisville.Both come up and Bob starts and Reed goes to the pen.After Bob starts 3 times they move him to the pen and Reed into the rotation.Doesn’t look like they have seen enough and know anything

    • Hotto4Votto

      Yeah, kind of makes me want to throw up in my mouth. The thing is, the Cardinals changed their way of doing things when they showed Walt the door. Walt didn’t want to change with the times so he went somewhere he didn’t have to. Riggleman represents the way the Cardinals used to do things until they saw a better way, not the current successful model of how to run a team.

      • Jeff Reed

        Instead of moving forward, the Reds will stand still if Riggleman is hired.

    • Jim Walker

      Not good news for those of us wanting fundamental changes in how the Reds operate. And you can’t have the “Cardinal way” mentioned in the article if the big guy is constantly in the way of making player personnel changes. Just look at how the Cards turned over their roster on the fly in late July and early August to go from an apparent also run to right in the middle of the play off chase.

  12. Hotto4Votto

    Luis Castillo was dealing last night. I wish he would have been left in to finish the 7th. That’s the Castillo I knew was still in there, just got to harness that sort of command consistently. He’s currently sporting a 4.33 FIP and 3.75 xFIP and has added 1.5 fWAR this season. Those numbers are all tops on the Reds starting staff. For a guy who’s taken a step back this year, those numbers are still pretty solid. The sophomore slump was real, but showing signs of emerging from it.

  13. old-school

    Castillo leads the Reds in Wins
    He’s been durable, starting 27 games and leading the team in innings at 143.
    He leads the pitchers in WAR @ 1.5- again.
    HIs K% is nearly 9 and he has cut his %BB/9 from 3.22 to 2.70
    His xFIP is a solid 3.76

    As Reds fans know full well, the category that stands out from 2017-2018 is %HR/9 .
    He’s gone from 1.11 to 1.5. Castillo only threw 83 IP last year at the MLB level and with his electric stuff , he may simply have won a lot of “round 1’s” versus hitters. In year 2, the sample size is much larger- 143 innings and 27 games started- so the hitters are adjusting and more prepared. You lose some battles along the way.

    But, assuming health and a strong finish, Luis Castillo and Disco look like solid pieces to a SP rotation in 2019 and beyond.

  14. Colorado Red


    Why does turn around and puts his hands in the air after s save.
    No living in the CIncy area, I was wondering why.

    • Jack

      He is thanking God for giving him the abilities to do what he does. We are all given the abilities to do something . It’s what we do with it that determines who we are.

  15. WVRedlegs

    Great pitching by Castillo. Yes it was what we were looking for from him this year. Just didn’t expect it to be Sept. 1 before it showed up. There have been glimpses, but nothing like this. A shutout of the Cards is always nice. Need a good outing from DeSclafani today.