The Cincinnati Reds hosted the Los Angeles Mike Trouts with Luis Castillo on the mound. The good guys batted around in the first inning and never looked back.

Final R H E
Los Angeles Angels (56-58) 4 5 1
Cincinnati Reds (53-58) 7 8 0
W: Castillo (11-4) L: Cole (1-3) S: Iglesias (22)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score | Statcast

Hitting

The Reds offense wasted no time giving their #1 starter a lead. Jesse Winker singled. Joey Votto walked. Aristedes Aquino singled in a run. Jose Iglesias doubled in two runs. Nick Senzel bloop singled in two more runs. Jose Peraza doubled in the fifth and final run of the inning. This all came with a Mike Trout dropped can-of-corn and the Reds botched a suicide squeeze with Luis Castillo batting, getting Peraza picked off of third base.

Once the opener, Taylor Cole, was out of the game, it was rookie pitcher Patrick Sandoval making his first career start. As you probably could have guessed, he threw five innings of three-hit baseball while striking out eight and walking two. The only runs he allowed were from walks and wild pitches (Jesse Winker in the 2nd, Phillip Ervin in the 7th). This Reds offense, man.

Pitching

Luckily, seven runs was plenty tonight. Luis Castillo had one of his better games of the season last time out against the Pirates. He picked up right where he left off tonight against the Angels as he nearly secured free pizza for the fans by the 6th inning (they had to wait until the 7th inning). His final line was 7 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 13 K, 1 BB. It was only the third game all year that he has allowed multiple home runs but that did not matter tonight. Ace-like stuff from the future of this pitching staff.

Wandy Peralta came on in the 8th. He walked the first batter he faced and then allowed a pinch-hit single. Michael Lorenzen replaced him to face Mike Trout with two runners on. Lorenzen got the strikeout on a 98 mph fastball and got out of the inning with no damage done.

David Hernandez allowed a two-run blast and a two-out walk to make things interesting in the 9th, forcing interim-manager Freddie Benavides to bring in Raisel Iglesias for one out. Cincinnati fans got their first live-look at Shohei Ohtani, who did not start because the National League would rather watch pitchers (fail to) hit. Iglesias struck out the two-way phenom to end the game.

Random Notes

  • Mike Trout won the battle of Trout vs Castillo with a walk, a single and a home run. He also had a gorgeous slide on a stolen base in the first inning as he glided past Jose Peraza’s tag, despite the throw beating him by a mile.
  • Aristedes Aquino continues to make the most of his opportunity with the big league club. He went 1-3 with an RBI and a run scored. His wRC+ after 13 plate appearances is 148.
  • Jose Iglesias made a wicked stop and got the out with a two-hop throw scooped up by Votto. That dude can play shortstop as good as anyone.
  • Jesse Winker walked in his 2nd inning appearance against LHP Sandoval but David Bell replaced him with Phillip Ervin in the 4th inning. I think Winker should get some more at-bats vs leftys to help his development but am not mad about Ervin getting playing time either. Good problem to have.
  • Tough night at the plate for Eugenio Suarez who was 0-4 with three strikeouts. He was the only starter without a hit on the night.
  • David Hernandez’s ERA has ballooned up to 7.24 (!) but his FIP (3.97) and xFIP (4.32) are still better than average this year. Wandy Peralta on the other hand… Let’s hope it is a quick 8-game suspension for Amir Garrett.

Up Next

The Reds go for the series sweep tomorrow, same time and same place. Anthony Desclafani and Jose Suarez are the probable starters.

67 Responses

  1. Satchmo

    “…because the National League would rather watch pitchers (fail to) hit.”

    Strawman much? Clown.

    Reply
    • RojoBenjy

      Not commenting on circus performers here. Just wanted to say that I don’t feel sorry for the AL teams when they come to NL parks. If the Angels wanted Ohtani to start then he can play a position (since he’s not yet pitching).

      Reply
      • Rut

        Indeed – without vitriol I think we can all recognize the fact that Lorenzen does what he does due to the lack of a DH. I think that has been awesome this year, love to hear visiting team announcers flip out about it.

        The game is so much more interesting for the possibilities that the pitcher’s spot in the lineup creates, especially as the game moves to the later third.

        To each their own, but i frankly feel bad for Reds fans (or any fan of an NL team) that truly want a DH. I mean, the team has been bad enough for decades, but to watch a brand of ball you find inferior as well — sounds worse than being a Cubs fan!

    • Rich H

      Satchmo, you’re being a knob. Stop both the trendy and outdated insults to the author. You may have an opinion, just recognize it as an opinion instead of being a turd.

      Reply
      • Seat101

        Nice language. You kiss your mom with that mouth?We are lucky to have a hipster like you to tell us How the cool kids talk.

      • Rich H

        Seat, I was trying to be polite as possible while expressing my displeasure with the unnecessary insult to the author. I’m not a hipster, and I don’t think any cool kids talk like that. If you want to take a breath and recover, feel free. Otherwise, we can continue this.

      • Jefferson Green

        Reminder: RLN has commenting guidelines so that we all can enjoy the experience of the site – among them is the prohibition on personal insults of any kind. The rest of us do not want to read about a personal little fight. If you find yourself thinking something insulting, please don’t type it, and if you have typed it, please delete it. This site works only if we want it to, not if Doug or others have to constantly edit and delete. Let’s self-police and self-govern for the good of all. Thanks for reading this and taking it to heart. And go, Reds!

        Part of the guidelines, for easy reference:
        No personal attacks. This covers other commenters, the post author, players, agents, coaches, journalists and front office personnel. This includes renaming people in a derogatory manner. In general comment on the Reds, not other commenters. Treat people with respect.

        Feel free to disagree, even strongly, just keep it civil. While emotions are inevitable when it comes to being a sports fan, we nonetheless believe it is possible to discuss the team in a thoughtful and respectful manner.

      • Satchmo

        I don’t usually add venom to by posts, but the author shot first with a bad faith argument regarding fans that don’t like the DH. There are several reasons that I (and people like me) want the DH to stay out of the NL, and virtually no one thinks its because “we like to watch pitchers hit.” My guess is that Habel knows that, but he couldn’t resist the temptation to smear those that don’t share his opinion. That, to me, is clownish.

    • Sam Miglarese

      Why is it that Castillo pitches so well for 7 innings v the Angels and it takes 4 relievers to protect his game? Drives me crazy.

      Reply
      • Doug Gray

        Because Luis Castillo is one of the best pitchers on the planet Earth.

  2. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I hope we extend Castillo. Now’s the time to do it.

    I agree with the Winker/Ervin extended play.

    Reply
    • Doc

      Except that Bell is still suspended, so the Ervin for Winker move was Benivedes’ call.

      Reply
    • RojoBenjy

      Likely Peralta because they have a dirth or LH relievers (Reed apparently still hurt). But Collins was just signed, perhaps he will be up soon.

      I am expecting Hernandez to be placed on IL or DFA’d to make room for Gausman tomorrow.

      Reply
      • Jim Walker

        My guess is Hernandez goes back on the IL. I read that Scott Schebler is having shoulder surgery this week. That has to work out to an easy 40 man spot by putting him on the MLB 60 day IL.

      • Jay

        I forgot about Scheb. Man this lineup has turned over. Still Hernandez and Peralta??? Would be better off with some guys out of Double-A. Bullpen has essentially been Lorenzen, Garrett, and sometimes Iglesias (he may be finally getting back to form). That ain’t going to cut it in the last months of an NLC race.

      • Doc

        Finnegan has had a few good outings, but how is he throwing? Is his velocity and pitch repertoire back to 2016 levels or has he just had a couple good outings with below standard stuff? Don’t know so just posing the question.

    • RedAlert

      Couldn’t agree more !!! Total waste of roster spots!

      Reply
    • Doc

      Also hard to understand why you call on your next to worst reliever first, then bring in Lorenzen for 10 pitches, then call on your worst reliever next instead of letting Lorenzen start the ninth, which forced you to have to use your closer. The sequence is mind boggling.

      Reply
    • Steve Schoenbaechler

      Probably a simple reason like, “If not them, then who?” Bringing up a AAA pitcher or AA pitcher isn’t always the best decision.

      Don’t get me wrong. I do believe we are going to go searching for a better lefty this off season. And, Hernandez may be injured and trying to work through it, like Dietrich was (I was wondering why we weren’t seeing him playing much). If not, he may simply be finally losing “the stuff”, where we need to consider replacing him.

      Reply
  3. Colorado Red

    So, with the DH the Babe never hits.
    Stan the Man, never hits.
    Where-as, we watch people to cannot play defense.
    The DH is from the pits of Hades.

    Reply
    • Matthew Habel

      Pitchers now are so much better than when the Babe was playing. League wRC+ for pitchers has been negative since 1983. I would rather watch hitters that cannot play defense hit than watch completely over-matched pitchers strike out on three pitches.

      Reply
      • Seat101

        Gaines with the DH are longer then games without the DH.

        Teams have discovered that they can work rosters to take it vantage of inefficiencies. You’ll see more of the two-way players.

        Of course with the DH there’s less nuance – maybe that’s what you want

      • Rich H

        Have a few pops tonight at the game, Seat?

      • VaRedsFan

        +1000 Matthew…The DH can’t go soon enough.
        Average game time is now at 3:04 minutes….I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than watch baseball, so I don’t care how long the game is. If I am paying money, i want a 3 hour+ game, instead of being short changed 45 minutes.
        I wouldn’t mind a pitch clock (that’s implemented).
        Next year, pitching change rules are coming to cut down on times too…i also agree with this.

        Who was mad that the Reds batted for 30 minutes in the 1st last night?

      • CP

        You guys are just wrong about the DH having meaningful impact on game times. It’s the same people stating this every time, and every single time, you are wrong:

        https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/is-the-dh-rule-bane-of-baseball-purists-slowing-the-game-down/

        It’s basically neutral (even if you include the Yanks/BoSox in the calcualtion). It is tv breaks/commercials that have caused games to run long, everything else is gravy. As for nuance, sounds like a bunch of nonsense. Sorry nobody cares about the 2-3 remaining decent hitting pitchers in the MLB, when 19 out of 20 can’t hit their way out a wet paper bag.

    • Don

      Agree with those whom say No DH.

      I do not like watching AL baseball. There is a lack of strategy and decision making.

      Reply
      • jazzmanbbfan

        I can watch either and don’t find myself any more (or less) interested if there is a DH. My impression is that the next collective bargaining agreement may try to address this difference and the leaning is likely to implement the DH in the NL. I’m fine with the two leagues being different but I’m not going to go ballistic if they adopt the same rule, whichever way it goes.

      • RojoBenjy

        At the end of July there was a game between the Red Sox and the Rays where the Rays manager did what was essentially a double switch to keep his reliever in the outfield. The Red Sox manager and the umpires were so confused that they had to stop the game to argue for 30 minutes, get on the headphones to NY, and the Red Sox STILL couldn’t understand and play the game under protest.

  4. earmbrister

    Another great outing by Castillo; career high in Ks with 13. The man is a true ace. He’s going deeper and deeper into games: 119 pitches and 7 complete innings. Here we come Cubbies.

    Huge K of Trout by Lorenzen. Hernandez looked good, until he didn’t. Could use another reliever to lead into Garrett/Lorenzen/Iglesias. Where is Reed in his rehab?

    Reply
    • Rut

      Indeed – without vitriol I think we can all recognize the fact that Lorenzen does what he does due to the lack of a DH. I think that has been awesome this year, love to hear visiting team announcers flip out about it.

      The game is so much more interesting for the possibilities that the pitcher’s spot in the lineup creates, especially as the game moves to the later third.

      To each their own, but i frankly feel bad for Reds fans (or any fan of an NL team) that truly want a DH. I mean, the team has been bad enough for decades, but to watch a brand of ball you find inferior as well — sounds worse than being a Cubs fan!

      Reply
  5. Pete

    Check my math:

    If we beat LAA tomorrow and the Cards are sweep by LAD in their 3-game series. The Reds go into Thursday behind the Cards by 2-1/2 games.

    Even if the Cubs sweep the A’s in their 3-game series. The Reds will be 5-1/2 games out going into the Cub series Thursday. If the Reds sweep the Cubs: and LAD sweeps the Cards and we win tomorrow worst case on August 12:

    1-1/2 Games behind the Cubs and this assumes they sweep the A’s this week
    2-1/2 Games behind the Cards and this assumes they sweep the Pirates this weekend. We have a 4-game series with the Cards, at home, starting August 15

    Great time to get red hot but we need to have a better performance from the bullpen to pull it off. The hitting looks to be there and the starting rotation is nails.

    Reply
    • CP

      Agreed. I would love to see them get aggressive in call ups for the bullpen. Kuhnel and Reed (once healthy) could be a great call ups I think.

      Reply
      • Jim Walker

        I like the idea voiced above to bring up Brandon Finnegan. It appears he has reinvented himself with the help of the Reds development staff. He recently arrived at AA and has struck out 8 while walking just 1 in 6 IP.

        If his health holds, gives him a quick look at AAA; and, if he gets the job done there bring him back to MLB. He has the advantage of having been there and done that in the biggest act of the biggest stage previously.

      • Jay

        At this point I’d love to give Brandon a go at it. The bullpen went from among the best to the worst. Guys who were killing it last season not getting it done. Fatigue maybe?

      • Indy Red Man

        Its called age with H&H. Their baseball life is in the nursing home stage.

      • Jefferson Green

        Hernandez was throwing 95 mph fastballs last night; I don’t think his arm is the problem. They kept moving on him, and he couldn’t hit his spots. The HR was supposed to be an inside fastball that ran back to the middle of the plate. If he sharpens up the location, he will be tough to hit, but given his struggles for a while now, it is hard to know if that will realistically happen.

    • Jay

      Our offense is Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde. They score all their runs in the first few innings and then go silent. It works until you face teams with stronger lineups and deeper bullpens. Our starting rotation is great, but not going to go out and toss 7 innings of 2 run ball everytime. We need relievers to step up. I lost it Sunday when bullpen nearly gave the game away. Grays gem was wasted. Good thing Tucker bailed them all out.

      Reply
      • Pete

        On the offense, wRC+:

        Senzel: 104
        Suarez: 116
        Winker: 127 Against RHP
        Ervin: 265 Against LHP
        VanMeter: 129
        Aquino: 148
        Votto: 98, Since June 1st: 106
        Barnhart: 141 since returning on July 26

        Am I reaching a little bit? Yes but this team is hitting right now and with the great SP’s we can make real noise. And this week, we don’t have to wait until 2020 or even next week.

        Cubs, Brewers and Cards all seem to be running on fumes while we are kicking in the turbo. Great time to be alive.

      • VaRedsFan

        They are hitting better by those numbers, but it is somewhat of a mirage. They continue to pile up runs (and stats) in non-late-close game situations. Those early runs are important, but whenever it doesn’t happen, the pressure builds, resulting in meager results late in the game. I wonder how many games have been won, when the Reds have lead or trailed by 1 run in the 7th inning or later. Good/great teams find ways to win these close games late.

    • Doc

      How many series have the Reds swept this year against anybody, much less against teams with winning records?

      Reply
      • Pete

        It so wonderful to live in a world that’s not stagnate. Off the top of my head, Marlins and Astros. Probably means we are due for several more. This is a different team than the one before the trade deadline. We’ll see.

  6. Don A

    I made comments in the prior article about the trades that they did not improve the team by not fixing an obvious problem Bullpen! Changes need to be made! Peralta, Hernandez and Hughes need to go now. Garrett needs to get his act together or he may end up on that list next.

    Reply
    • Pete

      Agree but I think we are going to see major changes with the pen and they have started with Gausman. Curious to if any more are made before Thursday. There is help in the farm system, not a lot but maybe just enough. We have some guys really hitting the ball now and Reds are able to score without the homers. Can’t say enough about Barnhart. The duo of Winker/Ervin just keeps impressing. IMO, O’Grady > DD at this point.

      Matt, I know you want Jesse to get more looks against LHP but now is not the time. We have a pennant to chase!

      Reply
      • RojoBenjy

        Tony Sipp is on waivers. Possible short term boost, even though he’s 36

      • Pete

        Minor league contract perhaps. Depends on how much fuel looks to be in the tank.

    • jim t

      Garrett isn’t going any where. . He has been nails for most of the year. No one throws up zero’s every outing. Come off the ledge.

      Reply
  7. Tomn

    Is there any chance that Cody Reed returns to MLB this year? What’s up with him? Any status?

    Reply
  8. Roger Garrett

    Reds know its time to make changes in the pen.Just can’t use 4 guys to get 6 outs up by 5 runs.Peralta and H@H will have to go and I love the vets but its time to move on and give some of the guys down on the farm a shot.Gausman will help along with Reed and pick another guy maybe Bowman.Offense struggles against lefties(what else is news) and falls asleep for long stretches but as long as we stay with our younger players it will work out.Seems like we just double switch just to double switch which unless you plan for the pitcher to go two innings or more its just not feasible with a short bench to start with.Doesn’t seem to be much thought about who is coming out of the game but rather who made the last out.Our relievers rarely go more then an inning and that’s on a good day so its almost like its written down it has to happen.We will catch the Brewers for sure and we will know this time next week about the other two teams ahead of us.Castillo has arrived just in case we haven’t noticed and Trout truly is the best player in baseball.

    Reply
    • Matt WI

      But don’t you think Trout is a lot like Votto?… just hitting empty HR’s and stealing bases but clearly doesn’t care enough about winning. What a losing culture he’s created in LAA. 😉

      Reply
      • da bear

        True that! Not Trout’s fault but the terribly inefficient contract the Angels handed him will likely mean mediocre results for the Angels for the next decade plus…..as if the Pujols contract didn’t teach them anything.

        In baseball especially no one player means that much to a team’s successfulness on the field.

        Bad culture can drag down talent; good culture cannot create a solid distribution of talent across 25 players. Efficient spending of resources does that the best, plus taking advantage of stupid rules that favor veterans and screws over rookies for three to four years.

    • Don

      Reds do Double Switch to much and have gotten them selves into poor matches late in games.

      Unless the pitcher is a batter as one of the next 4 spots and is being planned to pitch the next inning (very few ever start the next inning) no double switch.

      With the double switch the other manager knows whom will be batting and can plan their bullpen for the best match ups.

      The double switches can let the other team then pick the pitcher/hitter match up and the advantage of a pinch hitter is lost. Letting the defense define the match up seems to play into the other teams hands.

      Not doing the double switches will be critical in 2020 with the 3 batter rule. The offense will be able to dictate the match up next year without using double switches.

      Reply
  9. Matt WI

    Injuries are piling up across the Central. Davies on IL for the Brewers (do they even have a pitcher left?), Kimbrel is hurt, Contreras is hurt in Chicago… if the Reds just stay healthy they might be able to improve their lot.

    Reply
    • Pete

      Kimbrel is now on the IL. Cubs bullpen is in shambles, almost blew a big lead against the A’s last night.

      Reply
      • Matt WI

        I was crossing my fingers in that 9th inning for comeback! The A’s are scrappy, I kind of like them.

  10. Indy Red Man

    The Reds could make a run with this starting pitching, but the pen wouldn’t hold up anyway. Peralta is horrible and has been for years. He’s going to walk one of the first 2 guys he faces every time! H&H are washed up. Garrett is struggling with control. Lorenzen walks half the park too. Iggy is inconsistent. Why not go with Finnegan > Wandy and Bowman > DH? Try something.

    Another thing to consider…you don’t have to have a lefty to pitch to lefties. Sam LeCure used to have good #s vs lefties with his changeup and comeback fastball. Surely one of their righties has good splits vs lefties? Also haven’t looked at the #s, but doesn’t Mahle usually get thru the lineup once and look pretty good? Put him in the pen. I’d try to get LeClerc from Texas in the offseason. He’s signed thru 2024 or something. Closer experience and Ks people like crazy. They’re rebuilding and have alot of old guys like Choo, Pence, and Andrus. The Twins were rebuilding 2-3 years ago and had Ryan Pressley up for grabs because he’s 31 or something. Houston grabbed him and he’s one of the best setup men in the game. There are guys out there.

    Reply
    • Jefferson Green

      Almost every contender, including those with deep pockets and rich farm systems from which to deal, were looking for bull pen help at the deadline, and some of them came up empty. It is not easy at this point in the season to build a bull pen. The Reds will have some options if Gausman can transition and Reed, Finnegan, and Mahle can come back (note: Finnegan not currently on the 40 man).

      Reply
  11. Doc

    Do Cincinnati schools no longer teach the proper use of who and whom?

    Reply
  12. CP

    You guys are just wrong about the DH having meaningful impact on game times. It’s the same people stating this every time, and every single time, you are wrong:

    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/is-the-dh-rule-bane-of-baseball-purists-slowing-the-game-down/

    It’s basically neutral (even if you include the Yanks/BoSox in the calcualtion). It is tv breaks/commercials that have caused games to run long, everything else is gravy. As for nuance, sounds like a bunch of nonsense. Sorry nobody cares about the 2-3 remaining decent hitting pitchers in the MLB, when 19 out of 20 can’t hit their way out a wet paper bag.

    Reply
    • Jim Walker

      Thank you. And to add, the rule changes coming on line next season clearly indicate that MLB believes the on field factor slowing down games is all the pitching changes within innings in progress.

      I’ll add just based on eye test recall that I believe part of the problem is also that many pitchers don’t seem to want to throw the pitch of decision to end an AB. Watch for the number of 0/2 and 1/2 counts that end up running out to full and even eventually walks.
      When batters like Adam Duvall and Phil Ervin are consistently able to go down that deep in the count and come back to even or 3/2 and draw a walk or put the ball in play, something fundamental has changed. IMO a big part of it is that pitchers hope the batter chases a pitch clearly out of the zone for a K versus trying to make a pitcher’s pitch which looks good enough that the batter has to offer but isn’t likely to make meaningful contact with. As Chris Welch often says, a pitch needs to look like it has a chance to be a called strike if a pitcher expects a decent MLB hitter to chase it.

      Reply

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