So this aged poorly….

Final R H E
Milwaukee Brewers (29-22) 11 13 0
Cincinnati Reds (22-27) 9 11 0
W: Guerra (2-0) L: Peralta (0-1) S: Hader (12)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

THE GOOD

If you told me the Reds would score nine runs in a Luis Castillo start, I’d put my life savings on a win. To quote Jayson Stark: “That’s why you can’t predict baseball.”

The bats went, just not quite enough. Rookie Josh VanMeter started the scoring in the top of the second with a bloop double that brought home two. It was the first double of the kid’s career. After a Castillo flyout, Tucker Barnhart capped the inning with a mammoth three-run homer. Tucker has never been known for his power but just watch this puppy fly:

Derek Dietrich played add-on in the top of the third with a solo shot destroyed to deep center. The ball stopped about halfway up the batters’ eye, estimated at 432-feet. The blast tied Phillip Ervin’s double yesterday as the hardest hit ball by a Red this season at a 111.7 mph exit velocity.

Jose Iglesias continued his clutch hitting tear with a two-out, bases-loaded single in the fifth, putting the Reds up 8-6 at the time. Before that at-bat, Iglesias was hitting .467 with runners in scoring position. Dietrich and Iglesias: The heroes of this season.

Robert Stephenson and Jared Hughes pitched a clean 3.0 innings between them. The rest of the bullpen failed to take notes.

The bats had more chances after that, but a seventh-inning, bases-loaded, ground-rule double by Phillip Ervin was reviewed to land foul and an eighth-inning, potential sac fly by Eugenio Suarez didn’t quite travel deep enough. Sigh.

THE BAD

Neither of the “two most dominant starters of 2019” did much of note this afternoon, with each taking an early shower. Luis Castillo just didn’t seem to have his control, racking up 75 pitches with three walks and two home runs. Both Keston Hiura and Mike Moustakas took the Reds ace deep for solo shots on pitches that caught far too much of the plate.

He almost got out of the second inning with minimal damage but fell behind 3-0 to Orlando Arcia with the bases loaded before leaving a 3-2 pitch up that Arcia laced into left for a two-run double. That was the end of Castillo’s day.

Michael Lorenzen came on in relief and got the final out of the third then allowed two in his second inning of work, tying the game. The rest of the relievers followed Lorenzen’s lead.

Wandy Peralta coughed up the lead in the sixth, and then David Hernandez failed to staunch the bleeding. You have to believe Peralta’s time in the bullpen is winding down, though at this point, who even knows.

Curt Casali got thrown out after a bases-loaded, dropped third strike to Phillip Ervin. Casali must have forgotten the rule that if a base is occupied, the batter may not run to first base. The Reds best chance at rallying died in the most inept way possible.

NOT SO RANDOM THOUGHTS

This loss should upset me more than it does, but I find it hard to get mad about splitting a series with the Division leader.

Even if it didn’t end up mattering, this play was cool and fun! Let’s watch it a bunch and forget about the rest!

Also, Geno is a gem. Remember: Baseball is fun. 

44 Responses

  1. CI3J

    I’m not satisfied with a split. This is a game the Reds should have won.

    Instead, as I said in the other thread, they’ve fallen back to 5 games under .500, where they’ve been since April 6th when they were 1-6.

    Talk about being stuck in neutral.

  2. Ross

    They’ve had six opportunities to get 3 games under .500 since april 26th. They’ve failed to get there in all six chances…Snake bitten team

    • Mike Adams

      Yeah, but they all got good pay for the game and also saved 15% on car insurance with Guy-Ko.

      • Seat101

        Perhaps Doug should suggest to the Reds that they put the team up at a Holiday Inn Express in Chicago?

    • TR

      The season is still young and the offense is waking up so .500 and better is still within reach. The starting and relief pitching failed today but those games happen occasionally to all teams.

  3. Pete

    Although at times this team can be frustrating it is still far better than the last several seasons. Maybe they are just learning how to win. Today’s game is very disappointing.

  4. Roger Garrett

    Losing culture.Reds have to learn how to win as silly as that may sound.Peralta just like Sunday couldn’t get a lefty out.Hopefully Bell understands he needs only to pitch at least for awhile in low low leverage situations if he indeed remains in the big leagues.Reds hit some bullets today that were caught and Brewers hit some bleeders that fell in but that’s the way it goes sometimes.I was hoping we were beyond losing games in the 6th inning or later while our best guys watch from the pen but it happened today.Bell playing the match ups but it hasn’t worked the last two times with Peralta and while Hernandez has done well working in back to back games he hasn’t.Just have to wonder what may have happened if Garret and Iggy would have been asked to finish from the 6th on?Easy to second guess isn’t it?

    • NELSON COBLE

      time to cut bait on votto. salary or not. we are getting zero from him and catching position is a mess.

      • RojoBenjy

        Cut bait on Votto? Try the decaf, my man.

  5. Wayne nabors

    Until reds get a manager that will stand up to fo and demand the best players be on the team instead of the Zach dukes,peraltas and scheblers instead of better options this is gonna be the norm

    • RojoBenjy

      Problem is, i’m not sure the manager realizes that he doesn’t have the best players.

  6. Aaron B.

    Casali was assuming all runners would advance because the ball went to the back stop, but the guy at 3rd didn’t want to risk it (the ball caromed back pretty hard) so Casali realized the guys ahead of him weren’t advancing and tried to reverse course but fell to the ground. I don’t blame him, I thought there was a good chance to score on the wild pitch or passed ball or whatever it was, but it would have been a close play because of the crazy carom… the runner at 3rd probably saw that and retreated but Casali was stuck in no man’s land.

  7. Ron Payne

    I can count 6 games that the Reds have simply given away this year. Put those games in the win column and the Reds are 28-21 instead of 22-27. That would put them 2nd place.

    • Joel D

      I was thinking the exact same thing. The reds are throwing away games they have to and must win. At some point this losing culture should not be tolerated. Those who can’t contribute like Peralta and Duke need to spend some time with Schebler.

  8. matthew hendley

    Good news, its still may and this is still a split, and we haven’t lost a series to a NLC team this week. Hopefully that continues, Castillo will recover. Peralta, probably not.

      • matthew hendley

        More good news, ST Louis has already lost twice, in the last two days and due to a DH may lose 3 times. Homer Bailey on the mound against STL in game 2. Cubs going to face a tough PHI team as well. Pack is not breaking away today.

  9. FreeHouse

    Bell really needs to stop giving away outs batting Joey 2nd. He needs to drop him 6th or 7th. Also Reed needs to be on this Roster.

    • Scott Gennett

      Moreover, once Gennett is back, a tough decision shall be made to either keep Votto (651 OPS) as regular or sit him and play Dietrich (1011 OPS) everyday.

      • Pete

        If these to sticks hold up when scooter gets back, it should be a no brainer. Painful perhaps but a clear call. Otherwise Joey Votto becomes a relic and a slideshow, someone you can take your kids and grandkids to the park to see a man who once was the greatest hitter in Cincinnati Reds history. I don’t want that and I doubt Joey does either.

      • RojoBenjy

        The caveat is “once Gennett is back and performing like he has been the last two seasons.” Let’s not forget that just because he comes back is no guarantee he pick up where he left off.

        But I for one hope he does just that.

    • RojoBenjy

      I can get behind moving Joey down in the order, but not “cutting bait” as was suggested above.

  10. Matt WI

    Wow. Rough game to be at with all the ups and downs. Tucker’s homer was a thing of beauty. Wandy was not. Bummed about Castillo. Huge crowd for a Wed afternoon.

  11. matthew hendley

    220 Start time on Friday? what communism is this?

    • Lwblogger2

      A throwback to when Wrigley didn’t host night games. It wasn’t until well into the 80s that Wrigley had lights.

  12. jessecuster44

    Stop blowing big leads. Winning teams rarely have games like this. MAddening.

  13. Shchi Cossack

    We’re back to the same refrain again. No one ever knows what to expect from a reliever coming out of the bullpen. There are certainly times to bring in a reliever but excessive over management of the bullpen and excessive substitutions are just asking for trouble. Couple that with bringing in bad relief pitchers rather than good relief pitchers just doubles down on the trouble.

    To clarify any misunderstanding or misinterpretation…good pitchers are better than bad pitchers. Effective pitchers are better than ineffective pitchers. Pitchers with demonstrated effectiveness are better than pitchers with undetermined effectiveness. Replacing a good pitcher with a bad pitcher without reason is a bad move. Replacing an effective pitcher with an ineffective pitcher without reason is a bad move. Replacing a pitcher of demonstrated effectiveness with a pitcher of undetermined effectiveness without reason is a bad move.

    Castillo is a good pitcher who was ineffective today. Replacing him with a good pitcher (Lorenzen) was a good move. Lorenzen is a good pitcher who was ineffective today. Replacing him with a good pitcher (Hughes) was a good move. Hughes is a good pitcher who demonstrated effectiveness today. Replacing him with a bad pitcher (Peralta) for no good reason was a bad move, every day and twice on Sundays, even on Friday afternoon. Selecting a pitcher to face a left-handed batter simply because the pitcher throws left-handed is a bad move.

    Peralta v. left-handed hitters this season:
    5.60 FIP; 4.51 xFIP; 2.16 HR/9; 1.20 WHIP; .233/.286/.467 slash; .308 wOBA

    Hughes v. left-handed hitters this season:
    4.08 FIP; 4.71 xFIP; 0.00 HR/9; 1.17 WHIP; .150/.292/.150 slash; .224 wOBA

    Handedness statistics are inherently small samples, especially against left-handed hitters or left-handed pitchers and even moreso for single season and even moreso for partial seasons. Sometimes small samples are all the information that’s available, but the available statistics are clearly tilted in favor of Hughes over Peralta. I believe they also support the ‘eye test’ from this season and prior seasons with the Reds.

    Peralta v. left-handed hitters for his career:
    4.68 FIP; 4.72 xFIP; 0.93 HR/9; 1.50 WHIP .251/.350/.377slash; .322 wOBA

    Hughes v. left-handed hitters for his career:
    4.72 FIP; 4.67 xFIP; 0.74 HR/9; 1.31 WHIP; .257/.328/.397slash; .310 wOBA

    Even looking at career handedness stats, the two pitchers are no better than a wash, making the decision to replace a pitcher of demonstrated effectiveness with a pitcher of undetermined effectiveness for no reason is a bad move. Hughes pitched 1.0 inning and threw only 12 pitches, TWELVE PITCHES! Hughes last pitched 5 days ago for 1.0 inning and threw only 13 pitches, THIRTEEN PITCHES! He was the only pitcher, up to the point he entered the game, with demonstrated effectiveness.

    Zack Duke created a very good career for himself after the Reds signed him to a midseason FA minor league contract in 2013 after the Nats released him. I think the Reds made a good decision to sign him to a minor league contract during the off season, but he is 36 years old and I believe he has reasonably demonstrated an inability to get major league hitters out this season, especially following a completely ineffective spring training. At this point in his career, Duke is a below replacement level pitcher. Why Duke continues to hold a spot on the 40-man roster even though he was added to the IL simply baffles me. Why DB continues to insert him in any situation, especially high leverage situations, also simply baffles me.

    Wandy Peralta is a replacement level pitcher. I was really hoping that Peralta had turned a corner and become an effective pitcher this season, despite my concern that he accomplished his early effectiveness using smoke and mirrors. He is the same pitcher he has been for his entire career, a replacement level pitcher. He is pre-arbitration eligible this season and will remain pre-arbitration eligible next season. A replacement level pitcher making league minimum represents a cost-effective investment…if the manager uses him as a replacement level pitcher and not a high leverage pitcher simply because he throws left-handed.

    • Old-school

      This is really a RLN post. Agree.

      It also goes for playing Jose Peraza in LF and benching Jesse Winker . Thanks to the Old Cossack for some long winded reasoning

    • PhP

      Agreed. You never know what type of stuff a reliever will have when he comes out. Agree with Old-School about Winker too. I never want to sit him in favor of Peraza. If you want to give him his occasional day off against lefties go for it, but making him a platoon player this early in his career I’m not in favor of

    • wutinthehail

      Completely agree. Managers are getting to the point where they are pulling pitchers when they get to the third time through the lineup even if they are showing no signs of struggle up to that point. It seems to me, if you are mowing them down the first two times through the lineup, even if you regress a little you are still going to be better than most anyone out of the bullpen. Leave the starter in and see what happens. You can always pull him at the first sign of struggle.

    • SrRedsFan

      Well reasoned and well stated. Kudos!

  14. Klugo

    Maddening.
    Nothing drives me crazier, as a baseball fan, than seeing a pitcher lose focus after given a hefty lead.

    Looks like it’s safe to say that Peraza has lost his job(again), and has been relegated to bench duty. His spot on the depth chart is only going to get deeper when Scooter returns. Can’t say he hasn’t had his chances.

    • Eric the Red

      Actually, I can say he hasn’t had his chances. Two years ago, in his first full season at the age of 22/23 he lost his job after Scooter went nuts at the plate, way above his career norms. Last season, he was fine. This season, thanks to an injury to Scooter he switched positions right before the season started. His replacement at “his” position has played excellent defense while batting .300 on a team where no one is hitting; he’s batting nearly .500 with RISP so he’s been an offensive miracle. (If you’re THOM! you believe Iglesias will drive in runs like that for the rest of his career; I’m not so sure.) Meanwhile, with no one on the team hitting Dietrich came along and started hitting homeruns, so Peraza lost his spot again.

      Maybe we sign Iglesias to play SS and Peraza’s next year’s 2B. Maybe not. But this idea that Peraza has been given a ton of chances and keeps failing is simply not correct.

      • matthew hendley

        2017- Scooter Gennett- 497 Plate appearances (461AB) – 24 HR, 97 RBI, 2.4 WAR, .874 OPS
        2017 Jose Peraza- 518 Plate appearances (5 HR, 37 RBI, -.8 WAR .622 OPS)
        The changeover took place in June of 17, after Scotter commemorated D Day with his 4 HR game. Despite losing his job at 2B obviously the numbers indicate that Peraza was still given more then enough chances. And squandered them.

        2018- Scooter Gennett (starting 2B) 638 PA (584 AB) 23 HR 92 RBIs 4.2 WAR, .847 OPS 11Errors
        2018- Jose Peraza (starting SS) 683 Plate Appearances (632 AB) 14HR 58 RBIs, 2.3WAR .743 OPS 22 Errors
        2018 Jose Iglesias (starting SS Detroit Tigers) 464 PA (432 AB) 5 HR 48 RBIs 2.2 WAR .699 OPS 8 Errors

        An improved year by Jose peraza that is for sure, however his numbers do not come close to challenging Scooter Gennett despite having more playing time then him. Jose I still on the tigers was out performed by Jose I with 2/3rds of the playing time but still put up solid numbers that reflect his defense, of which, Peraza had none. Despite this, Jose P earns the chance to maintain the SS position, Jose I is brought in as a back up option.

        From here on out, the word effective is a ‘common sense guess on the persons position now)
        2019- Jose Peraza Numbers (effective Platoon LHP UT) – 146 PA (137 AB) 4 HR 11RBIs, .1 WAR, .575 OPS
        2019- Jose Iglesias Numbers ( Effective starting SS) -162 PA (155AB) 3 HR 17 RBI, 2.2 WAR .759 OPS
        2019 Dereck Dietrich Numbers ( Effective Platoon RHP Starting 2B) – 119 PA (100 AB) 12 HR 27 RBIs 1.4 WAR .650 OPS
        2019 Kyle Farmer Numbers (Effective Platoon LHP Starting 2B) 66PA, (61 AB) 5 HR, 14 RBIs .3 WAR, .781 OPS

        Not going to insult anybody here and post winkers numbers for LF. Scooter obviously went down with an injury in Spring training. Iglesias was given the starting SS job, with Peraza getting the starting 2B Job. With effectively similar playing time Iglesias has distanced himself from Perazas production, especially on defense. With Roughly 2/3rds the amount of playing time, Deitrich is well on his way to eclipsing Peraza as a RHP option. Likewise, with maybe 1/4th the time Farmer has also provided his argument to replacing him as a LHP 2B option. When Scooter returns, it is not a question of if, but a question of when he will also out produce Peraza.

        The Facts are there, every time Peraza is placed in competition with another player he loses. Should superior players be forced to sit because it would ‘hurt peraza’s Nerve’ No. More then likely the adjustments that Peraza did make last year evaporated this year along with his production. He has been given the chances, the numbers do not lie. Even if the reds do not sign scooter to an extension ( and due to the fact I do not want to repeat my other posts opinions, I will leave it at that) Deitrich, short of Front office negligence will be offered Arbitration and will return. Jose Iglesias has already made visible steps to indicate he is willing to talk , (agent change) and would also be a superior pickup.

        So yes, the assessment that Peraza has been given a ton of chances, is correct.

      • PhP

        I’m more in the middle between you two, but you can’t say Peraza extremely struggling this year and his first year didnt play a part in the benching. Yes, Scooter the first year and Iglesias and Dietrich this year have played extremely well, but Peraza has played very poorly. If he started the picking up from where he left off last season he would be certainly playing more than he is at the moment.

      • Eric the Red

        So…He lost his job after 2 months in 2017. Then he had a good year last year. And lost his job this year after 2 weeks. Yup, tons of chances.

        Look, I’m not his agent or his mother. But the “tons of chances” narrative is false. He is/will be a much better defender than Dietrich, Farmer, and Scooter—as well as having more positional flexibility—and he’s shown promise offensively. He’s not some bum.

      • matthew hendley

        You had might as well of been his agent. Only his agent or his family would believe the broken car that you are trying to sell is drivable. I literally showed the math, the numbers, THE FACTS, and you still wish to deny what is staring you in the face.
        Lets talk defense: (although I can remember a defensive wizard poor hitting player that the RLN soured on as well)
        I don’t even need numbers to show that Iglesias is the superior SS to Peraza. Its not even close.
        Scooter(.983 FLD%) had 665 defensive chances and Erred 11 times in 2018. That means he converted 98.4 Percent of his opportunities
        Peraza (.980 FLD%) has had a total of 98 defensive chances and has erred twice so far in 2019. that means he converted 98.0% of his opportunities. Its close but survey says….scooter is the better defender.
        Deitrich (.1000 FLD% fielding percentage) has not erred in any of the 77 chances he has had at 2B this year. obviously nothing beats perfect. On a side note this also means that DD is a better defender then Scooter, something that I will accept.
        Farmer (.950 FLD Percentage) has had 1 error in 24 chances. This means he converts 94.9% of his attempts. It would seem, that Peraza is better then Farmer at second. I guess we should start him then, I guess we should get on the phone with KC and see what they want to get billy back too.

        It is not like they just benched JP in 2017 either. He got significant playing time especially after Cozart got hurt. HE has received 1600 plate appearances over three years to produce a cumulative 1.7 WAR in 4 seasons. Scooter got 6.5 in 2, Detrich will clear 1.7 in a month.
        The worst move of the offseason was not flipping Peraza for a pitching prospect/pitcher. It could have been a straight up trade with Detroit, who would have been dealing with the loss of JI.
        Oh and being placed in LF doesn’t make him a LF. Winker is getting the starts over him against RHP and soon Ervin will be getting the LHP.
        This is the real world, when a better player comes along, and you don’t produce and they do, they get the Job, any other result and then the manager really does deserve to be fired.

      • Old-school

        The Reds may be wise to look at the Brewers and Gennett and why Gennett was DFA’d. Gennett was a terrible hitter against lefties in his 4 years with the Brewers. His lefty right splits are very wide. Some years we’re awful. In 2018, at age 28 Gennett grew into a good hitter against both. He just needed at bats. The Brewers also let him go because his arbitration clock was getting expensive. Paying 3 million for a lefty 2b in 2017 who couldn’t hit righties and had double digit HR’s only once in his career was too much. The Brewers said Gennett can’t hit lefties, is too expensive and doesn’t fit. That was after his age 26 season.

        Jesse Winker is in his age 25 season. Labeling him as a platoon player is shortsighted. He’s had 115 + career at bats against lefties. He squared up Josh Hader’s 97 mph and turned it into 104.3 mph. He singled off Ryu when no one else could do anything.

        Peraza is making 2.75 million. Arbitration never goes down. Only up by a lot. Billy Hamilton got DFA’d for this reason as did Scooter Gennett. If Peraza isn’t an every day player, hard to see he’s an expensive backup with players like Iglesias, Dietrich, Ervin and Blandino.

      • Old-school

        ” Lefty 2b who couldn’t hit lefties”

    • matthew hendley

      @oldschool, Correct Scooter was extremely poor against same handedness hitters in MIL. However upon moving to Cincinnati he was quoted as working on his swing and plate approach. Whether or not this was in reference to working with DOn Long, or someone else I don’t recall. Obviously the changes to hit approach worked as SG fixed his problems with Lefties (shown as his OPS vs. LHP jumping nearly 300 points over 16-18).
      Peraza on the other hand, made minimal adjustments until 2018. He has and continues to show, little to no plate discipline whatsoever, despite having a Strong production when pitched middle inside, and low and inside, he is generally weak when pitched elsewhere. Even the hits that come from elsewhere usually show up as the Bloop variety. With a full season, and being pitched too either with an inaccurate, or no scouting report (something that I would determine as sketchy). The league was able to adjust to Peraza’s strengths, watch when he takes his at bats. Asside from mistake pitches, he is almost universally pitched outside. Peraza further compounds this when he goes further outside, reducing his BB numbers and raising his K. He has not made adjustments, has not changed his approach (swing less), and as such has watched his results plummet. As such, AND RIGHTFULLY SO, he has been replaced by a growing list of superior players.
      I suppose the question is now, can he make the adjustments necessary to at least be a serviceable bench piece. I would wager that Blandinos return would serve as a decision point for the Reds with him.

      • da bear

        Peraza will continue to be a Red beyond this year as a utility player, multiple positions, at an affordable salary. Scooter priced himself out of affordability with great but inconsistent offensive production and marginal defense. At nearly $10MM/yr, he’ll be let go like Billy Hamilton.

        Iglesias and Dietrich are both more productive per dollar spent than Scooter.

      • matthew hendley

        “Peraza will continue to be a Red beyond this year as a utility player, multiple positions, at an affordable salary.”

        Utility usually indicates some positive involvement. And with a Pre arb salary of 2.775MIL he will become expensive quickly. (and by quickly I mean, possibly 5Mil next year)

        Short of an extension, (which will eclipse the 2.5 MIL he is receiving now) JI will become a FA again, and will ask for a total that will on the low end be closer to his 6.2M/Y that he received in final year of ARB. While we can and will offer ARB (final year) to DD (2.0Mil) its safe to assume that that will end up around 5 million as well. An admittedly cheap option.
        But there is only one money target that matters and that is the Luxury tax threshold. The Reds aren’t even close.
        Now your right, Bobby C in yet another demonstration of his tight fistedness may let Scooter walk, and he will walk directly into lucrative multi year deal. Or we can give him one. Its time that the Reds secure Known commodities and get rid of known suspects.
        Money will clear up. In 2020 Kemps money is gone, and that right there is enough to sign all three. SG,DD,JI. Woods Money is gone too (although I have given an out the box idea for that situation as well). Puigs money also (probably) gone. Signing a player to an extension just validates the money that they are already earning.
        But your right, it is Bob Castillini we are talking about here, so we will probably have a 5 Million dollar Jose Peraza leading the world in errors and strikeouts at Short next year. At least we will have Dietrich at second for a year.

  15. earmbrister

    Hey Wesley. I watched this game too and also wasn’t terribly tormented. When they went up 5-0, I almost expected it.

    That said, just a quick note on the standings. You wrote: “This loss should upset me more than it does, but I find it hard to get mad about splitting a series with the Division leader”. The Cubs are in first place by 2 games. Could be worst, it could be the whiny birds on a stick.