Prior to the start of this season, opinions here at Redleg Nation were widely split on Jose Peraza. This observer was among those who believed he had achieved a breakthrough in 2018 when he finished fourth in the National League in base hits. Despite the lack of walks which continues to characterize his offensive performance, it seemed he would be able to settle in at shortstop if he could improve his defense and maintain the offensive output he displayed last year.
But alas, those who believed Peraza was far from a finished product have been correct, at least so far this season. Pitchers are pitching him outside almost exclusively, and — unlike 2018 when he was able to serve those pitches to right for hits — he can’t hit the outside pitch with any authority, if at all. Instead of assuming the role of a regular that the team can rely on, Peraza in the first 34 games has been reduced to being moved around the diamond and starting on an irregular basis. Today, Manager David Bell has him in left field. The batting order for today’s 12:35 p.m. afternoon game against the San Francisco Giants has only one left-handed batter, Joey Votto, to face left-handed Giants starter Drew Pomeranz. Peraza has an on-base percentage of only .220, with 20 hits and three walks in 33 games. If he is not able to re-discover his 2018 form soon, he may be the next 2018 mainstay to head to Louisville to try to get things turned around.
Other second basemen on the team Derek Dietrich and Kyle Farmer have OPS numbers of 1.047 and .994, respectively. It’s only a matter of time, if those two continue hitting that way, that they become the everyday platoon at second base over Peraza, whose OPS is .496.
Left-hander Pomeranz has pitched well for the Giants this year after two years with the Red Sox. Only four players on the Reds roster have ever faced him in the major leagues. In his last two starts, DeSclafani has pitched 12 innings, allowing only one run, six hits and four walks while striking out 12. His team could really use a performance like that today.
Of course, the big question is, what is wrong with Raisel Iglesias? At times he has looked as dominant as he ever has in his career, and other times, like his two appearances in this series, he coughs up leads with shocking regularity. He has five losses and two blown saves. This team has to figure out what the problem is, and until the issue is resolved, perhaps others should be used in late-inning and save situations. In post-game comments Sunday, Bell said he was going to continue to use Iglesias in high-leverage, late-game roles due to his track record of success prior to this season.
|2B Joe Panik||CF Nick Senzel|
|RF Steven Duggar||1B Joey Votto|
|C Stephen Vogt||3B Eugenio Suarez|
|1B Brandon Belt||RF Yasiel Puig|
|3B Pablo Sandoval||2B Kyle Farmer|
|CF Kevin Pillar||SS Jose Iglesias|
|SS Brandon Crawford||C Curt Casali|
|LF Mike Gerber||LF Jose Peraza|
|P Drew Pomeranz||P Anthony DeSclafani|
Additional insights into the statistical history of the players in today’s game is available all season long at BaseballSavant.com.
News and Notes
More interesting numbers on Derek Dietrich …
Derek Dietrich is now 18/70 (.257) with 7 BB, 14 K, a .361 OBP, 165 OPS+, 163 wRC+. Recently his numbers started looking solid, rather than all-or-nothing/fluky, despite still having an .188 BABIP.
They’ve successfully shielded him vs LHPs, w/ 77 PAs vs RHPs, 6 vs LHPs. #Reds
— RedsFanMan (@CinciRedsFanMan) May 6, 2019