Tonight the Reds meet the Pirates in the middle game of the current three game series at PNC Park in Pittsburgh. The Reds can still win the series and complete a winning road trip if they can reverse their fortunes and win the remaining two games of the series. Game time tonight is 7:05.
Lefthander Cody Reed is scheduled to start for the Reds. The Pirates will counter with righthander Joe Musgrove.
Tonight marks Cody Reed’s third start of the 2018 season and second start since being reinserted into the Reds rotation on August 30 against the Brewers. Reed performed well on August 30 allowing just 1 run (earned) in 4.2 innings. Eyebrows were raised when he was pulled mid inning in a leverage situation despite having a pitch count of just 73. Jim Riggleman later explained Reed’s exit had been due to him being on a tight pitch count that night as he was being transitioned from the MLB bullpen to the rotation. Reds fans hope Reed will be able to extend his stay tonight with similar results.
Joe Musgrove is a 25 year old righthander selected in the first round (46th overall) of the 2011 draft by Toronto. After being traded to Houston in 2012, he was sent to the Pirates in January of this year along with 3 other players as the return on former Pirates ace Gerrit Cole. Musgrove started 2018 on the DL with shoulder discomfort. Following recovery and rehab, he was placed in the Pirates rotation in late May and has made 16 starts for the Pirates this season including a June 17th start versus the Reds when he was roughed up for 6 runs (all earned) in 4.1 innings of work.
What to watch for:
The key to Cody Reed’s success to stay on top of his pitches and thus create a downward plane on both his fastball and slider. When Reed does this, his pitches avoid prime hitting zones; and, he misses bats or induces weak contact. When his release flattens, his pitches end up in prime hitting hot zones or sail wildly out of the strike zone resulting in an abundance of bad outcomes.
Musgrove is coming off consecutive poor starts, both on the road, against the Cardinals and Brewers. In each game he allowed 2 home runs. He will be hoping his return to the more pitcher friendly PNC Park where his ERA is nearly half a run better than on the road will help him avoid the long ball and another poor outing.
Sal Romano and Jackson Stephens both pitched an inning on Monday; but, could be available for similar duty tonight. Otherwise the Reds pen should be unfettered and ready to go.
The Pirates pen worked 2.1 inning on Monday spread across three pitchers. Nobody worked more than an inning. Their leverage relievers were not called upon.
|1. Billy Hamilton (CF)
2. Jose Peraza (SS)
3. Joey Votto (1B)
4. Scooter Gennett (2B)
5. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
6. Scott Schebler (RF)
7. Tucker Barnhart (C)
8. Phillip Ervin (LF)
9. Cody Reed (P)
|1. Starling Marte (CF)
2. Adam Frazier (2B)
3. Gregory Polanco (RF)
4. Francisco Cervelli (C)
5. Jose Osuna (1B)
6. Jordan Luplow (LF)
7. Pablo Reyes (3B)
8. Jordy Mercer (SS)
9. Joe Musgrove (P)
FACT: The Reds with the two lowest OBP are batting at the top of the order. You can decide what if any significance should attach to this fact.
News and Notes
Here are Doug Gray’s latest thoughts about goings on in the Reds minor league system
— Doug Gray (@dougdirt24) September 4, 2018
Reds are filling out the expanded roster (looks like Brandon Finnegan will not be recalled)…….
From #Reds: recalled from Class AAA Louisville RHP Tyler Mahle , selected from Louisville the contracts of C Tim Federowicz and OF Gabriel Guerrero and recalled from Louisville RHP Keury Mella for the purpose of placing him on the 60-day disabled list (left oblique strain).
— C. Trent Rosecrans (@ctrent) September 4, 2018
More kudos for Tucker Barnhart…
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) September 4, 2018
It is September again; and again, for the fourth consecutive year, the Reds are looking at a 90 loss season. Some perspective from our RLN bossman:
The Cincinnati Reds are on the verge of losing 90+ games for the fourth consecutive season.
In the 65 seasons from 1950 to 2014, the Reds had also four seasons with 90+ losses. #PositiveMomentum
— Chad Dotson (@dotsonc) September 4, 2018
Rather than puzzle about what this might mean now and for the future (there is a long cold off season ahead for such musings), here’s a story not about baseball or even football as it might appear on first glance. Instead, it is a remarkable uplifting story about being human. Bookmark it to read when you have time to appreciate and be moved by its totally unbelievable but true twists and turns.
The jaw-dropping story behind an NFL coach's search for his family https://t.co/AEwJPF0reF
— OhioJimWalker (@jn_walkerjr) September 4, 2018
And in the meantime because we are obsessed Reds fans, as always, GO REDS!