The Short Version: Reds cap off a rough week with a series-ending victory in Philadelphia.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (29-35) 4 9 0
Philadelphia Phillies (37-28) 3 5 0
W: Duke (3-1) L: Alvarez (0-2) S: Iglesias (13)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score

The Good
–Sonny Gray’s final line doesn’t reflect the face that he was pretty locked in today: 5.2 innings, 3 runs allowed on 4 hits and 3 walks. One of those hits and two of those runs were not his fault (see below). I’ll take this version of Gray every single day.

–Amir Garrett was unhittable in his one inning of work. Watching him pitch to (and strike out) Bryce Harper was entertaining.

–Nick Senzel didn’t start, his first day off since joining the Reds. The “day off” last six innings; Senzel entered the game and went 2 for 2 with a run scored.

–Zach Duke, Michael Lorenzen, Garrett, and Raisel Iglesias pitched 3.1 innings of shutout relief.

–Duke threw two pitches and got credit for the win today. Nice rules you have there, Major League Baseball.

–Gray and Curt Casali combined to nab Harper trying to steal home. That was fun.

–Casali had a single, two walks, and a run scored. Joey Votto singled, walked, and picked up two runs batted in.

The Bad
–With bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the third, Gray induced Rhys Hoskins into an easy infield popup that would have ended the inning and preserved Cincinnati’s 1-0 lead. Except the Reds chose that moment to look like Little Leaguers. Neither Votto or Derek Dietrich could come up with it, and two runs scored. Sure, the wind was whipping around and the sun was in their eyes or something, but that was an embarrassing display that cost Gray two earned runs.

–Yasiel Puig was 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. He’s now hitting .207/.252/.378 on the season.

The Recap
–Reds pick up a much-needed win after losing 6 of 8.

–Jose Peraza played three different positions today: CF, 2B, LF.

–The Reds opened the scoring with a run in the top of the second inning. Derek Dietrich led off the frame with a single. One out later, Dietrich attempted to steal second while Jose Iglesias made a little “excuse me” swing on the ball. Iglesias made contact and it landed where the second baseman would have been, if he weren’t covering second because of Dietrich, who advanced to third. The run came across when Peraza grounded out to third.

–After the Bad News Bears nonsense described above, the Reds were down 3-1 as the game moved to the seventh. With two outs, Casali got a rally going with an infield single. Josh VanMeter followed with a walk, and Nick Senzel — pinch-hitting for Jesse Winker — collected an infield single of his own. Votto then delivered a single to center that scored two and tied the game. That was one of the biggest hits of the season for the Reds, given recent struggles and the need to pick up a win today. Nice to see Votto come through.

Eugenio Suarez followed with an RBI single to left that gave the Reds a 4-3 lead that the good guys would not relinquish.

–On to Cleveland, where Luis Castillo will face Trevor Bauer on Tuesday night.

Today’s Tweets

87 Responses

  1. Seat101

    Fun game.

    Is it just me or is Jesse Winker well on his way back?

    • Steve Mancuso

      He’s hit the ball hard, and not just recently, without a huge amount to show for it. Strikeout rate up a little and walk rate down a lot. But Winker has hit the ball as well as he did last year.

      • Brian

        He could improve his situational hitting a little bit. Bases loaded less than two outs and all you need to do is hit a fly ball for a run. I could be wrong but it feels like him and Iglesias have hit into 700 double plays this year.

      • Indy Red Man

        Too many hard groundballs to the right side though? Winker is like Joey in that when he’s going good he’s shooting it the other way and up the middle. I’m no hitting coach but:

        1. Spray the ball around…hit it the opposite way
        2. Get the ball in the air & out of the infield

        Just simple exit velocity doesn’t cut it. Schebler would hit the ball hard at times, but it was always into the shift

  2. Seat101

    Chad,
    My Knothole team was sponsored by a charity the “Heart Mart”. And we were the third team in our age group from our area. The lovable losers were in the second group. We were like the guys in animal House who kept being told to sit on the couch rather than mingle with the other pledges. In four years we won three games. I’m 64 years old and I still don’t find that funny.

    • Grand Salami

      The Lebanon Roller Rink checking in and we played like we were on skates. I don’t think we won a game.

      Point is Reds had to rally against themselves today

      • Seat101

        I guess that’s better than playing on thin ice

    • Brando

      I will never be able to bash a pitcher based on my own history. In High school, as a closer for a game we were leading by four runs in the bottom of the 9th (and no other pitchers available)…I hit two batters in a row, then walked the next two. I couldn’t control the ball at all. So we were down by three with the bases loaded. A guy that was drafted in the 2nd round by the Baltimore Orioles came up to the plate in hit the longest home run in his school’s history to win the game. I faked sick the next day.

      *to be fair the next game I pitched was my last ever, and I had Tommy John at age 18.

  3. Old-school

    Good win. Reds pitching great.
    Senzel is becoming a really good major league player already. Winker had 3 quality at bats. Would like to see Gennett and Ervin on this roster Puig is lost and needs replaced.

  4. Mark Lang

    I really, really, really thought Puig was going to put up monster numbers in GABP and that it was apparent the Reds had discussions with him before finalizing the trade about making him a franchise/marquee player (with all the community involvement and corporate tie in deals going on… but something happened between point A and point B. Puig can’t play… at all. He should not start another game.

    • Steve Mancuso

      Interesting personnel decision for the player that is third on the team in home runs (11) and first on the team in stolen bases (9 for 11). I agree he’s been disappointing. And I wouldn’t mind if his playing time was cut back, especially vs. RHP when Scooter gets back. But benching him seems pretty extreme.

      • JB WV

        Agree, although his good buddy the new hitting coach sure hasn’t enlightened anyone. The Dodgers seem fine without him. Wondering if he was hired just to appease Yasiel.

      • Mark Lang

        3rd on a team in home runs? Wow, that’s some cherry picking right there… try, last on the team (in starters) in Slugging (even with home runs), last in On Base Percentage, 6th in runs scored, Last in Batting Average – and all those “lasts” are on a team that is one of the worst, if not the worst, offensive teams in the league.

      • Steve Mancuso

        I didn’t say he was having a good year. In fact, I said the opposite. But all of the stats you cite are derivative of Puig’s low batting average.

  5. Steve Mancuso

    David Bell managed a great game today. Pinch hitting Senzel for Winker in the leadoff spot is something a lot of managers wouldn’t do. Bell was aggressive handling the platoon splits with the bullpen to perfection.

    He makes decisions like this all the time. Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t. But they’re the right moves (by percentage play) whether they work or they don’t.

    Just thought I’d throw a spotlight on a day when they worked like they were supposed to since any time they don’t he’s “over managing” or some other phrase that implies it was his fault.

    Bell is smart, up-to-date and really handling the team well. I couldn’t be happier with the way he’s managing.

    • Indy Red Man

      I like him too. This Dusty Baker/Corey Patterson “Gotta get’em going” stuff has to go though? Enough already with Barnhart & Peraza. Puig is nearly that line too. The Reds have won 3 straight games that Casali has started! Blandino>Peraza. Scooter and Blandino should end the Peraza era. Ervin needs to play too.

      Overall though…I agree with you. He’s got to evaluate what he has and some guys aren’t probably 100% in his control…like Puig. The Reds really really want to market this guy!

      • greenmtred

        The thing about the “gotta get him going” is that he does. The starters can’t play every inning, and absent roster changes, guys like Barnhardt, Peraza and Puig have to play. Same with the designated bench guys. It’s unlikely that a slumping hitter will improve without playing.

      • Pete

        Green, this is a valid point; however, the three mentioned have been starters for the most. It’s mid-June and the club struggles nightly to score runs. Here a couple of guys I’d like to see get more PT: VanMeter, Casali, Ervin and perhaps even Farmer. I’ve seen enough of Puig, Barnhart, and Peraza.

      • greenmtred

        They have struggled, Pete, and it’s frustrating to watch. But Puig, in particular, is a bit mysterious. It’s hard to imagine that he isn’t going to start hitting at closer to his expected level. He’s been around: Did the pitchers suddenly figure him out? Peraza is not surprising, since–excepting part of last year, which was partly smoke and mirrors, per Steve–he hasn’t hit much.

      • Pete

        Green, his bat looks slow and is it me or does he always take a really long swing? IMO, they have figured him out: high fastballs from the waist up and an occasional breaking ball down and away. They just seem to throw him high cheese now and best he can do is the occasional pop up. I had such high hopes, maybe he’ll get it figured out…

      • greenmtred

        Pete: I’ve certainly noticed that he doesn’t seem able to catch up with fastballs. If he’s really lost it, he’s lost it fast. I’ll watch his swing.

    • Reddawg12

      Agreed. There are several posters who need to read this.

    • VaRedsFan

      I called out the Senzel for Winker in the game thread. Winker can get his chances vs. lefties if the Reds are way out of touch in the standings.

      The bullpen platoon moves are fine if they don’t involve Duke and Peralta. Duke blew so many games in the early season in high leverage spots.

    • Shchi Cossack

      Completely agree that DB had a masterful game today, but @VaRedsFan makes a completely valid point. Bullpen churning just to match up a platoon split makes little sense if the LH reliever is less effective than the RH reliever being relieved. I don’t think anyone argues against replacing Lorenzen with Garrett against a tough LH hitter, especially with a scheduled off day after the game.

      While match up pitching can certainly help, I do believe that DB needs to factor the effectiveness of the existing reliever into his decision. Every pitcher has ‘ON’ days and every pitcher has ‘OFF’ days. If a reliever is absolutely dealing, why risk pulling him for an unknown performance from the bullpen, just to face one hitter. How many times have we seen a reliever come in from the bullpen and walk the first hitter he faces and then loses the platoon advantage against the next hitter with a runner now on 1B.

    • Jim Walker

      Bell manages by the new “book”. My issue is that I don’t particularly enjoy the kind of baseball that often results from it, not with Bell.

      I am looking forward to the rule changes coming next year which limit the number of pitchers on the active roster and how pitchers are used within games.

      If I have a complaint with Bell it would be that he isn’t looking forward to next year and trying to get a jumpstart by using his bullpen in line with what the rules will be then. But I suppose the Reds still harbor thoughts of still getting into the race this year.

  6. CP

    I agree completely. Bell has handed this team really well all season. This offense on this squad has not made game management very easy for him and requires the active type of management from the manager. The defense on this squad is weak and Bell and the rest of the analytics-driven organization has put their guys in the best position to succeed all year. The pitchers benefit from that every single game, it’s just no one remembers a corner OF making a boring catch on a line drive in the the corner versus some grounder that finds a hole in the shift.

  7. Indy Red Man

    I’ll admit I gave up today. The ump irked me with the walk to Hernandez on the 3-2. It was the same pitch they called Winker out on and closer to the corner then when Suarez caught looking on 3-2.

    Anyway….the boys have won 3 straight Casali starts. NOTE TO BELL!!!! Also JVM drew a key walk and has a .351 obp. The kid just looks like a hitter to me! He takes some pitches and he looks for one he can square up! Bell could find more at-bats for him if he wanted to?

    • Slicc50

      I agree. Josh looks to me like he has a plan when he goes up there. He is willing to take a BB if he doesn’t get a pitch to his liking. The Reds need more guys like that!

    • Shchi Cossack

      @Indy Red Man, I thought the umpire put the Reds hitters at a distinct disadvantage today with his calls. The same pitches he called strikes for Reds hitters were called balls for Phillies hitters and it happened a lot. That really impacted Gray’s performance today and I thought he dealt with the problem magnificently. Today spoke loudly to the Old Cossack for robo strike zones.

  8. matt hendley

    A good win by the Reds, completed a comeback and caught even me off guard. TIme is running out for a few people. Assuming that Peralta will be sent back down if/when Stephenson returns, a few roster spots will need to be created soon. Blandino currently on Rehab assignment. Scooter to minor league Extended Spring training tomorrow. Wood throwing off a mound. Thats 3 spots that will be needed.

    DH games coming up. Hope David Bell Does not waste the opertunity. JVMR should either be the DH or the DH Factor (individual who replaces in the field the guy going to the DH) perfect opertunity to have him compete against regulars.

    David Bell has made some moves, sometimes like today, they have worked but more often than not they haven’t. He is not bryan price by any stretch of the imagination but it will take more then a singular come from behind win to make me a complete fanatic of him.

    But good win, on to a weak cleveland

    • Steve Mancuso

      “more often then not they haven’t” — unproven claim

      I disagree with this. He makes countless moves – taking out the starting pitcher, handling the bullpen, platooning several positions, uses defensive shifts, willingness to switch around the lineup, doesn’t waste outs on bunts — countless moves that work out. And beside, when they don’t work out that doesn’t mean they weren’t the right move.

      It’s the rankest, laziest kind of fan whining to see a move that makes sense by the numbers but doesn’t work out then complain about “over managing.”

      No one is asking you to be a “complete fanatic of him” — but that’s a nice straw man.

      • JayTheRed

        Your comment about the rankest, laziest kind of fan is pretty lame when you’re directly responding to someone’s comment. There have been many occasions when I don’t agree with your statements but I don’t sit there and put you in a group of people by directly replying to you with angst.

        There have been a ton of examples of when a starting pitcher this season has been rolling along and Bell takes them out simply cause he can use a pinch hitter to get a run that inning. Or the pitcher has simply gone through the order 3 times. Yes the stats overall in baseball show that a pitchers success go down, but give the guy a chance to perform. This bullpen has worked so many innings already that come August their arms are going to fall off. Give the starter a chance to get a win or a quality start. I can remember a few games with both Roark and Gray where I was like why is he taking them out they are pitching well.

      • Steve Mancuso

        I said the rankest, laziest kind of fan whining, not fan. Careful not to attack the person (who I’ve never met) but the words.

        Your own statement that is supposed to provide examples where Bell has made mistakes actually admits the numbers back up his decisions. Your only opposition is “give the guy a chance to perform” which is a plea, not fact-based. Of course there are examples we all second guess. I do, too. But given the overall performance of the pitching staff, how can anyone have systemic complaints about Bell? The Reds are # 4 of 30 in ERA and #2 in xFIP. I mean, seriously.

        The Reds rank #18 out of 30 in bullpen innings. The Brewers have used their bullpen *56* innings more than the Reds. That’s more than 20%.

      • Rich H

        Good luck explaining this stuff Steve. You stated it perfectly but it seems at this point more than a few vocal minds are made up.

      • matt hendley

        29-35 makes it a completely proven claim.

        If i fire the exact same rifle, at the exact same target at the exact same target at the exact same distance at the exact same time in my breathing, with the exact same sight picture 50 times in a row. I will hit the exact same point in that target 50 times. That’s math

        If i pitch (hypothetically here, not claiming i am an actual MLB level pitcher) the same pitch, to the same batter, in the same position, in the same count in the order, in (insert all other variables indicating the exact same pitch), to a player 50 times, i am going to get a strike…….who knows, certainly not 50 times. That’s probability.

        PLayers are human, and one of the abilities a human has is to adjust to the situation. DB has tried it on occasion. Keeping Mahle on during the SF game. It backfired, but it was a good effort. Starting pitchers who want to remain starting pitchers, are going to need to be able to pitch into the 7th and sometimes 8th, regardless of how many times through the lineup they have gone. Its called development. Additionally while the numbers say in general, bat a righty against a LHP, and specifically, they say bat Not winker over winker against Lefties, WInker will never improve against Lefties. WInker will eventually become a straight platoon player. He will diminish. That is a failure on management. On DB and his staff, (the parts dealing with hitting at least) need to find a way to continue to bring him along to face lefties, as opposed to having to remove him in situations where the PROBABILITIES indicate his removal. PUIG is the biggest example of this. A proven hitter who won’t hit right now. What is the manager doing? Is this Horse whisperer working with him to change his swing to be better? Is he getting benched for a show of time? No? ok. Thats a failure on DB.

        You talk about useless bunts. Luis Castillo is a good pitcher, but a slugger at the plate he is not. So perhaps with bases loaded, and only one out. But because the probabilities say bunting is worthless Castillo swings away, Right to second to start the 4-6-3 DP. A bunt, could have resulted in a 1-2-3 or other variation DP, but more then likely it would have resulted in Castillo out and a run scored. with 2 outs in the inning. Castillos a bad bunter? who is making him practice?

        Managing requires a human touch, and sure numbers are important, but as one of many factors that lead into managing. If we were going to do everything by the numbers might have well have built a robot.

        So going back to 2 comments you made
        “But given the overall performance of the pitching staff, how can anyone have systemic complaints about Bell? The Reds are # 4 of 30 in ERA and #2 in xFIP. I mean, seriously.”

        Well the offense for one. But to be more specific then that, Jose Peraza. I understand DB is not totally responsible for JP being on the 25 man as that is Dick Williams determination, not his. But it is DB determination to start him. To play the “Platoon game”. Has he tried to coach him back to last years success? Not well enough, has he PH a Pitcher ahead of him, giving him and the FO a message they would understand? No. What has he done. Just thrown him out there so his supporters can feel vindicated when he gets a seeing Eye single once every third game.

        Since you are going to attack my comment about the reds record let me remind you of this,

        “He makes countless moves – taking out the starting pitcher, handling the bullpen, platooning several positions, uses defensive shifts, willingness to switch around the lineup, doesn’t waste outs on bunts — countless moves that work out.” you talk about the entirety of his moves, i will talk about the entirety of his results

        and since it is also coming, he is a game over 500 since the first nine games?
        Was he not managing the first nine games as well?

        Again, he is not a technical expert that is compeletly lost in the management position, (Price), and he is not a My way without fail manager (riggs). There is hope, but he needs to manage, not just compute.

      • Steve Mancuso

        You spend lots of words attacking the way Bell handles pitchers. Then at the end you quote me with the stats about how the pitching staff rates overall. And then you say say, well it’s the hitting. Again, the pitching overall has been handled well. There’s no way to avoid that conclusion based on the facts. Is David Bell perfect? That answers itself.

        Your desire to develop pitchers for 7th and 8th innings instead of following the data about the third-time penalty is simply outdated and being abandoned by every major league team. It’s stubborn thinking the likes of which put the Reds years behind under Jocketty, Baker and Price. I want the Reds to be managed based on the best available information and research.

        Your suggestions to prioritize development are legit considerations, especially Winker vs. LHP. I share that concern. I’ve advocated development at the expense of wins here many times over the years. But choosing development over numbers would give the Reds a worse record at least in the short term and maybe ongoing. By definition, development sacrifices the present for the future. In your example, you admit Winker isn’t as good as the alternative RH hitters, but he needs time to develop. The pitchers may no do well in the 7th and 8th innings, but we need to keep doing that because it’s good for their development. All the while this development costs runs and wins.

        That’s fine. Development might be more important than wins in the short term. But then you sure can’t complain about the Reds record being poor, as you do, when several of your solutions by definition lead to worse records at least as of now.

        Your caricature of Bell as “all computer, not human” is pure fan fiction, entirely made up by a person who has never met or talked with David Bell about baseball or been around him to know how he handles players. You have zero actual idea of how David Bell handles people. You’re just saying it — without any proof at all — to generate your narrative.

        Sorry to be coming at your opinions like this. You comment here more than anyone else now. And that’s fine. I was away for two weeks on a trip and didn’t comment. I generally try to stay out of the comments section, figuring I have have a voice in writing posts if I want. But it’s gotten to the point where people who disagree with you feel like there is an onslaught of opposing opinion coming from you and they give up. At least that’s my inference because those smart, reasonable voices that were the strength of this site seem to be missing with a couple exceptions. I’m trying to offer a counterpoint.

        I could be wrong and guilty of what I’m accusing you of. But my cards are on the table.

      • matt hendley

        OK cards on the table.

        I do comment alot, but eliminate the “Ra Ra reds did something cool” comments and I go to just about above average. Eliminate the posts about (JP) and I barely comment at all. I am always going to comment once, usually at the beginning and that is to catch my way on the thread. The orginating comment of this thread was a Ra Ra thread with a minor, i am not completely against the guy comment that got jumped on.

        Yes, I beat up on Jose Peraza, yes i beat up on people who think whose Peraza is (not will be but is) a good player, because he isn’t, I also beat up on people who get on here and defend faulty opinions such as that. If you have been paying attention i have gone around to backing up opinions with statistical data when it is available and I have the time to find it. So I do get on people who claim that Joey Votto died yesterday of old age or that scooter is going to suffer this magical drop-off cause he is hitting 30. Oh and if i had to pick a moment, it was when i was called crap on this site that i took the gloves off and started hurting peoples feelings (allegedly, and yes the comment was eventually addressed)

        I don’t think that DB is a bad manager, and if that is how it is coming across I am sorry. He is a middle of the road manager, who has benefited greatly from his pitching coach and is on the verge of having his hitting coach being exposed as a fraud.

        I am also not saying keep a young starter in, through the 7th even if he gives up 80 runs. but at some point you gotta get them into the 7th. Schell (2+y ST) pitches into the 7th, scherzer, lester, hendricks, etc etc, (insert compitent pitcher here) pitches into the 7th, heck on occasion Homer Bailey pitches into the 7th. and while the move to a RHB was a good move today that was because the option was available with senzel on his 2/3s day off. That is usually not the case and winker is the best amongst the least options and still pulled.

        You want to talk about straw man arguments? How about this sites move to be like, look we are better in this than last year. Yea, that’s cause we were trying to lose last year, and the year before.

        You are correct. I have never met David bell, I can only develop my opinion through the Nots. What he has not done and to a lesser extent when he says something that is outside of the realm of normal during a press interview. (not BP F bomb type of realm of normal, more the JP is bad so play him every day, the realm of normal). Noone is on notice, JP has been rewarded with more playing time, and the reds still pander out YP every day.

        David Ortiz has been shot.

      • Rich H

        Thank you Steve, for all of that.

        Matt, we bump heads often, and I’ve been trying to avoid saying this directly, but I just don’t care any more how this is viewed.

        You should really, REALLY, examine exactly how informed your opinion is, how much it adds to a conversation, and consider how much breath of yours other people want to hear. I do not say this to be mean, or spiteful, or whatever. I say this because in a place where everyone has opinions, you shout yours out louder and more often than anybody else. Because in a place where reasoned (and even occasionally unreasonable) argument should take place, you choose to dispute almost every plainly presented piece of logic that you don’t agree with repeatedly and dogmatically, with very little regard for the merit of the counterargument.

        More than a few valued regulars here have been much more absent of late, some citing or alluding to the nature of commenting here this year. I would not at all count myself as one of those valued voices, and absolutely cannot speak to their reasons. But I can tell you that the way you comment here, with the repetitive, single-mindedness of a political ad campaign or a zombie on the hunt for brains, is playing a significant part in ruining my enjoyment and value in what for years what I considered a good place to share thoughts and ideas about the Reds.

        Please, just take a step back and think or listen before making a million daily comments.

      • matt hendley

        Ahhh Rich Hill, the vaulted Jose Peraza apologist.

        I see now, I have hurt peoples feelings.

        I remember not to long ago when it was Doug Gray that was hurting peoples feelings. When it was Doug Gray whose responses were chasing people away from this site.

        And while I didn’t pay attention before that I am sure that someone else was responsible. And someone before that. And so on ad nasium. But the difference is Doug and Steve and a few others are given the opportunity to post their opinions ad nasium. I am, attacked and vilified for sharing mine.

        I have significantly increased my researching on my comments this year. Having found this site sometime during the ’18 season I used to be an emotional and non-logical typist. Homer was going to come back and pitch a no-hitter, Billy was finally going to take a walk etc etc. However I have learned through research and baseball research to refine my opinions through the available resources. I.e. Baseball resource.

        However I have seen the fallacy to such as well. I remember when Scooter Gennett was supposed to be a bum. That he was never going to repeat his 2017 results. We know how that story ended.

        If people’s feelings are getting hurt…. too bad. Come and make an argument backed up with facts. When called out for using a small sample size, the correct course of action is not to go to an even smaller sample size, to attempt to back up your argument. Oh and yes rich, I mean YOU specifically, and not you in the General Sense.

        But all in all cool story from the both of you. I would love to hear how i am destroying the world today, since it seems to be my turn to do so.

      • Jefferson Green

        Matt, please re-read Rich’s post, and try to really understand what he is trying to say to you. It is valuable.
        I happen to enjoy some of your research and perspective and have never had my feelings hurt by you, but do wish you would post less and with less attacking attitude at times.

      • greenmtred

        Matt: For what it’s worth, I enjoy your posts. You feel strongly about this stuff, but still have a sense of humor.

  9. DocProc

    Somebody on the game thread today mentioned that the pitch on which Harper stole home should have been called Strike Three. I just watched the video at the top of this page and that observer was correct–it’s right down the middle on a 1-2 pitch. Out three should have been called before Harper reached the plate.

    • DocProc

      Just watched it again and the pitch shows up in the strike zone box at 88 MPH. Not right down the middle, but unquestionably a strike.

    • DocProc

      Just went back and checked: VaRedsFan gets credit for spotting that.

      • VaRedsFan

        Thanks for the shout out. Sometimes my eyes don’t lie…lol

      • vegastypo

        Did Casali jump out of his crouch and block the ump’s view? That’s the usual spiel, such as on a stolen base when the catcher comes out of the crouch to make the throw to second.

        Nice, Call, Va. !!!

      • CFD3000

        I didn’t see the game – listened to it on WLW while driving from Atlanta to Charlotte. So I could EASILY be wrong about this. But I believe Marty described it that the Reds pitcher (was it Gray or was he gone by then?) stepped off the rubber and threw home, which means it was a pickoff move, not a pitch, so ball or strike is irrelevant. Is it possible that’s why strike three was not called?

      • docproc

        Gray never steps off the rubber; never stops his pitching motion.

        I’m just intrigued because if they had called Harper safe, I don’t know that the Reds could have appealed. The ump wasn’t watching the pitch–he was watching Harper coming to the plate. Can’t appeal balls and strikes. I imagine the ump would say he didn’t see the pitch and couldn’t make a call. I don’t think he could use replay to find out where the pitch was. Not sure–just speculating.

      • CFD3000

        Ok Doc and VA – you were absolutely right. I found the video clip last night and Gray did not step off. It appears to be a normal pitch. The batter moved out of the way to avoid Harper, but that doesn’t negate the pitch. It was a clear strike three, inning over. Wonder if Harper’s agent will be lobbying to have his caught stealing eliminated? Also – who led off the next inning for the Phil’s? I Need to investigate. Was there a possible batting out of order situation? Fascinating play – thanks for spotting that guys!

      • Jefferson Green

        Fun dialogue and research. Thanks, guys!

      • DocProc

        Ooh–batting out of order is another interesting implication! Good thought CFD. Since the ump clearly called the runner out, not the batter, there’s no out-of-order batting–but there should have been. That batter should not have returned to the plate with a clean count the following inning.

      • VaRedsFan

        Actually, since it was a caught stealing the batter does get to return to the plate next inning with a clean count. And he did…Hoskins, I believe.

      • lost11found

        Actually I think the rule is the opposite.

        If a runner is CS for the third out the current batter does lead off the next inning with a 0-0 count.

      • lost11found

        An unintentional double post VA…

  10. JayTheRed

    As a fantasy baseball owner I can’t own any of the good Reds starting pitchers because none of them ever get to have a quality start ever. The way Bell runs the pitching staff drives me nuts. I know they have had good results as a whole but for all of the moon and stars please let these guys get an opportunity to get quality starts once in a while. I bet the Reds are in last for quality starts or near it.

    I do want to say other than the way Bell runs the pitching I am ok with the Rest of his managerial skills thus far.

    • Cincyborn2012

      So you want Bell to give the starters more of a leash to accomplish a quality start, even though that would likely worsen the overall success of the pitching staff, just so you can use a Reds starter on your fantasy team?

      He’s managing the pitching staff exactly as he should be. It’s not always exciting to watch, but it’s clearly been effective so far. I think DJ should also get a lot of credit.

  11. Reddawg12

    Great win. That 3 run rally in the 7th really came out of nowhere. Gotta love baseball.

    It’s time for Casali to start getting some more playing time. Hopefully today was the start of that. I was thinking that with all the money coming off the books this offseason, it would be awesome if the Reds could retain Casali as a backup and spend some money to sign Yasmani Grandal. It would probably take a monster contract, but he’s really good and would rake at GABP. Majorly upgrading the offense at the C position would be huge for the lineup and with Votto’s power diminishing, Grandal would be worth the money in IMO.

    • Wayne nabors

      whats sad is,reds used to have him

      • RojoBenjy

        Yep. They chose poorly that time (between Mes and Grandal). The other time was choosing Cozart over Gregorious.

      • Jefferson Green

        In hindsight, I agree that I wish that the Reds had traded Mes instead, but I don’t think the Reds chose poorly on this trade. They really needed another front-line starter, controllable for a few years. To get this pricey commodity, real value had to get traded away. The Reds got a stronger team for several years out of it, including the post-season. And if Mesoraco didn’t get hurt multiple times, he would have been at the beginning of a run of being a top catcher (top 5 or so).

    • Jim Walker

      By all accounts the Reds were seriously in on Realmutto, maybe the runner up at the end. So, maybe they will be looking to upgrade offense via the catching position in the next cycle this off season.

      • Reddawg12

        This was my thinking as well. The front office seemed like they wanted to upgrade the C position before Barnhart really started struggling this season. So now, you’d think that upgrade would be even more on their radar. Would be so huge for the offense IMO.

  12. jreis

    This was Bell’s best managed game of the year. He pushed all the right buttons today. I Actually like what he is doing with the line up construction and how he is managing the pitchers. I do wish he was more aggressive with his offensive play calling but I Think he will as he gains more experience and once the younger faster base runners in the minors make it up here.

    Speaking of that I know there is a big push to bring up Ervin up here. But I say if we are going to bring up an extra outfielder I would bring up Jose Siri. I have watched him a couple times already this year and he really looks good at the plate and on the field. he would bring elite speed and defense at the very least and I think he is going to be a really good hitter. Ervin had his chances last year to take the bull by the horns and become an everyday player and he blew it. I think Siri has a much higher ceiling.

    • PhP

      I don’t agree with your characterization of Ervin’s chances. I wouldnt say 247 PAs last year would equal “had his chances”. I’m not saying he will ever be anything more than a 4th OF but I don’t think it’s fair to say he’s had his chances. Especially with the 3 year long Peraza experiment.

      • RojoBenjy

        Ervin being dissed like he has been is a crime.

      • Grand Salami

        With the way Ervin is playing, he could be the 1st or 2nd best hitting OF on this team. Puig is floundering and Winker is foundering. Senzel has fewer MLB AB that Phil and he has never raked at AAA the way Phil has. Get that man up and make it a 4 man OF, pronto!

      • Jreis

        I was a huge Ervin fan. He has a ton of talent but just seems lazy to me. Too many baserunning mistakes and fielding mistakes to me.
        Like the brewers game this year. He scorches a shot to straight away center. One of the hardest hit Balls by a red this year. But then he stands in the batters box admiring it and nearly gets thrown out at second base. I can see why the reds front office is frustrated with him.

      • Pete

        Jreis – I understand your thoughts regarding Ervin. A real talent who has natural skills but at times doesn’t seem like he is exactly completely with us. However, Reds have a little choice if Winker continues his struggles against LHP and Puig’s struggles against all pitching. Maybe see the month out and make a change at that point if warranted but the production from the corner OF spots needs to be upgraded, one way or the other.

        It’s quite possible Philip Ervin has a mind that occasionally wanders…

  13. Hanawi

    Bell overmanages every game. Sometimes it works. More often it doesn’t. Big reason why the Reds are last in baseball in losses by 1 or 2 runs. He’s better than Price at least.

    • Sliotar

      @Hanawi

      IMO, yes, Bell overmanages in many situations. My comparison is watching/listening to other MLB games, which I do virtually every day.

      Direct example in Sunday’s game….Gabe Kapler gave Nola every chance to finish off the 7th inning when he was clearly fading. Contrasted by Winker being lifted for Senzel.

      Philadelphia is going to need Nola to finish off those type innings, in September or October.

      The Reds need Winker to take those at-bats and deliver, sooner or later.

      This team may well have to take a step back in 2020 to set up a real contention window later on. If so, some of switching may end and young players can be fully tested, for the long-term growth of the club.

      Trading away more Shed Long (playing in Seattle) and Jeter Downs (top 10 in a rich Dodgers system) types for guys near 30 on 1-year deals is not a game the Reds can keep playing.

      • Sliotar

        Related…. why are the Reds third-worst in stolen base percentage (61.7%) and near the top in overall attempts?

        Do the players have a green light?
        If so, shouldn’t Bell be clamping down?

        If not, isn’t this a sign of a manager/club “pressing” a bit, because of the offense?

        I just get the impression most days that Bell is desperately trying to keep an overall mediocre club from falling out of “wild card contention” (everyone says they are “in it.”)

        And, trying to help everyone forget how botched things are after 4 straight 90-loss seasons of “rebuilding.”

      • Sliotar

        Long was traded to Yankees for Sonny Gray.

        But, it’s a hit to the system and would not likely have been a necessity if the rebuild had been successful and not “junked”, as Fay tweeted back in the winter.

      • CP

        The caught stealing argument is a pretty poor example of overmanagement since the stat itself can be misleading as it counts caught guys that got picked off. Nick Senzel is responsible for at least two of these by himself, and the sample size is small enough where it matters since they are essentially league average if you take those two away.

        The only guys I really want trying to steal bases are Senzel, Peraza, and Puig, although I don’t mind some others doing it situationally. The only players that really stands out on the list of caught stealing is Jose Iglesias, who is 1-4, and Jesse Winker, neither of which are probably given a green light, so I assume they had a hit-and-run that went poorly or something.

      • Steve Mancuso

        I have mixed feelings about Winker and pulling him to hit LHP, especially in a big situation like that. But leaving Nola in isn’t an example of Kapler (who is extremely aggressive and generally manages like Bell does) being more patient. Nola has a super strong track record. The Phillies bullpen is crippled by injury right now. Those factors played a big role, not anything else.

      • Big Ed

        I was OK with Senzel hitting for Winker. It was a key AB, and they had Senzel to take it off a lefty, so I thought it was clearly the right move. I would have not wanted them to use Kyle Farmer there, if Senzel had not been available.

        Bell has done a ton better over the last month, and seems to trust his eyes more. In Chris Welsh’s very good interview with Bruce Bochy, Bochy said that all the data is helpful, but that the manager really often needs to watch the game at hand and trust what he sees in making some decisions.

        For example, Bell let Lucas Sims go one more inning than he had been letting his starters go. Lucas tired and gave up some runs, but not the game. But even if doing that didn’t specifically work, it was still a good decision.

        Bell from a fan’s point of view is a bit bland and dull. He is about as quotable as Tarzan. That probably has very, very little impact on his actual job performance.

      • RojoBenjy

        @CP

        Jose Iglesias has also been picked off of first base twice.

    • Pete

      IMO, there is a better than 50/50 chance Winker never hits LHP adequately at the MLB level. He has never hit them well or even good or fair. MiLB numbers (OPS) versus LHP
      2012: .653
      2013: .742
      2014: +1.000, what? Caustion: SSS, 94 PA’s but still
      2015: .654
      2016: .756
      2017: .653
      MLB: .537

      I have zero problem sitting him down or ph for him against LHP. The Reds at this point need to focus on winning games, especially doing everything they can to boost the ineffective hitting. The sky may be the limit for Jesse hitting RHP but against the lefties he should not automatically be given preference.. Under Earl Weaver, the O’s always had a powerful platoon in LF. Blair in CF, Robinson in right and a very strong platoon in LF. There is no crime here: maximize JW’s skills while at the same time doing the same for the team’s fortunes.

      Let it be Lowenstein!

    • greenmtred

      I think the players’ performance (or lack of it) has more to do with the Reds’ record.

    • docmike

      No, the main reason the Reds have lost so many close games this year is the anemia offense. Hard to win when you score 1 or 2 runs.

      Personally, I think Bell has done a good job as manager. His job is to put the team in the best possible situation to succeed, which I believe he has done most of the time. It’s not his fault if the players fail to perform their job to the best of their ability.