Final R H E
Philadelphia Phillies (71-65) 7 6 0
Cincinnati Reds (64-74) 1 7 2
W: Smyly (3-6) L: DeSclafani (9-8)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

THE GOOD

Aristides Aquino hit a home run. [Make sure to check if still true before hitting publish.] Yep, still true. Drew Smyly missed a fastball out over the plate, and the Punisher sent the ball to the moon as a result.

— In addition to the dinger, Aquino made a spectacular running catch on a smoked Bryce Harper liner in the sixth. The ball seemed destined for a double, but Aquino charged back toward the wall and leaped to catch it at the edge of the warning track.

—  Alex Blandino made a slick play in the top of the second, catching Andrew Knapp’s liner and firing to first to double off Adam Haseley for the first two outs. Welcome back to show, Dino.

— Walks and dingers did Anthony DeSclafani in today after what was an otherwise solid start. Disco went 7.0 innings, striking out eight. The two long balls and walks that preceded them ultimately made the difference.

THE BAD

— DeSclafani almost had a five pitch first inning, but Bryce Harper’s groundball skipped right over Joey Votto‘s glove into right field. It was in-between hop to be sure, but Votto did look to be caught on his heels. Harper hustled to second, bringing up Rhys Hoskins with the potential to put the Phils in the lead, but Disco struck out Hoskins on five pitches. No harm, no foul.

— Disco’s escape act only lasted that one batter though, as he walked Cesar Hernandez to start the second. The next batter, Scott Kingery, hit a lunging, off-balance, Todd Frazier special out to right field. 2-0 Phillies.

— Then, in the top of the third, Disco faced Hoskins again with two outs. Instead of striking out the slugging first baseman, DeSclafani grooved a middle-middle fastball and Hoskins did what he does, sending it out to deep center. 4-1 Phils.

Nick Senzel struck out twice on breaking balls to start the game, both with awkward, flailing swings. Even after a solid showing in yesterday’s second game, Senzel has scuffled of late. Making matters worse, after a single to lead off the sixth, Senzel got caught on the basepaths.

Wandy Peralta iced the game for the Phillies in the eighth, giving up a two-run homer to Harper then a solo shot to Hoskins. All of a sudden, the Reds were down by six.

NOT SO RANDOM THOUGHTS

Curt Casali got a single out of some miscommunication in the bottom of the second when Kingery and Corey Dickerson both decided the other was going to catch the ball. I honestly find no baseball play more hilarious than that. Just two guys deciding that ball is someone else’s responsibility and looking at each other like utter dolts when no one takes charge. Priceless.

— The rest of this season feels pretty forgettable, doesn’t it? Aquino continues to prove himself while everyone else seems like a known quantity. Maybe Josh VanMeter should play every day but that’s about the hottest take left. Meh.

Up Next

Phillies at Reds

Vince Velazquez (6-7, 4.86 ERA) vs. Alex Wood (1-3, 5.80 ERA)

6:40 EST

34 Responses

  1. matthew hendley

    WIll Aquino Catch up to Pete Alonso. Will he hit enough, homeruns to catch the attention and get some ROY votes?

    Solid outing by disco with a few mistakes. Few mistakes cost though

  2. CI3J

    I think most of us already have our eyes on next season. I wouldn’t say Senzel, Aquino, Ervin, JVM, and even Winker are known quantities just yet, so they as a young core at least make the games somewhat interesting to watch, but I’m most looking forward to 2020 with a healthy Bauer and Wood in the rotation, a revamped bullpen, and the young core all 1 year older and experienced and ready to start living up to their potential.

    • VaRedsFan

      Not a big fan of Wood for next year. He has a very “Scott Feldman” type of feel for me. Someone that once had it, but appears to be on his last legs.

      However…he is exactly the type of pitcher that would give up 1 run in 7 innings against the Reds

  3. VaRedsFan

    Since there was a discussion a few days ago about what Votto swings at, or what he should swing at…
    Check out the video above, of Harper’s 2 run HR.
    Those are the exact pitches that Votto takes, jacknifes out of the way, or gounds out to 2nd base on…inside corner thigh high. Nearly every lefty in the history of baseball loves the ball down and in like that.

    Again, nobody wants JV swinging at balls out of the zone. (Talking heads and some RLN false narrative). But, every pitch does not need to be in the center of the tic-tac-toe board to be considered hittable.

    • JB

      And Joey has to understand he is not getting the close calls anymore. He needs to start hacking at anything close.

      • TR

        Certainly with two strikes. Votto has taken too many third strikes this season.

      • Ed

        I’d love to know exactly how many strike 3s he’s just watched this year. Is there a way to find that out?

      • ELZ

        @ Ed: Baseball Reference under Votto’s advanced stats. Look for the L/SO stat. It says 49 times this year (career high) which accounts for 45.8% of his strikouts this year.

      • Jim Walker

        @ELZ> I am not finding this on the Advanced Batting Table. Do you recall the name of the table it is in? Maybe Play Index is required to see it? Thanks.

      • ELZ

        @ Jim Walker: Just hover over the heading “Finders & Advanced Stats” then click on Advanced Stats under the Batting header.

  4. VaRedsFan

    Since there was a discussion the other day about what Votto swings at, takes, or what he should swing at….
    Take a look at the video above of Harper’s 2 run HR.

    This is what I was talking about. Thigh high, inside corner. Nearly every lefty in the history of baseball loves the ball down and in. Votto either takes, jacknifes out of the way, grounds out to 2nd, or tries to hit it to left field.
    We never wanted Votto to swing at balls outside of the zone. That’s a false narrative created by talking heads and RLN. Every pitch does not have to be in the center-square of the tic-tac-toe board to be considered hittable.

    • Lockersocks79

      Joey May be struggling this year; partially related to injury, mostly to aging. However, I trust Joeys instincts and knowledge over any couch-side fans opinion.

      • VaRedsFan

        Injured players don’t play 5 games in 3 days, so I think we can 86 that excuse.

      • Lockersocks79

        I said PARTIALLY to injury, MOSTLY to aging. You and I are not Joey Votto, nor are we close enough to his inner circle to discount him being injured. If the Reds and Joey Votto say he was injured then most likely that is a truth.

        What I’m not a fan of with some of the Reds fans, is dumping a player that has contributed to the team over many years to play a rookie who has had 5-10 slightly above average games. We’ve done this with Barry Larkin and BP and now some Want to cut Votto for unproven talent. In Vottos case, give him a chance to rebound next year, if he falls short of expectations, then slowly phase him out.

      • VaRedsFan

        I wasn’t saying that he wasn’t injured. I’m saying that he’s not injured now. You kind of missed the point of the post, and that is of the pitches that he decides to swing at. It’s long been a misconception that people want him swinging at pitches outside the zone, where my stance has been that he should be more aggressive at pitches IN THE ZONE (not even including great pitcher’s pitches”), instead of taking them.

        I was one of the first to praise his new stance/approach at the plate. I think, with work over the off season, that he can recapture some of the great form he showed in 2017.

    • Shchi Cossack

      There are 24 qualified players in MLB with a 5.0 WAR and/or 140 wRC+ or better. Joey Votto’s 67.9% Z-SWING% is higher than 10 of those 24 players. Joey Votto’s 21.8% O-SWING% is higher than just 4 of those 24 players.

      The only ‘false narrative’ presented is the unjustified and unsubstantiated argument that Joey Votto needs to swing at more pitches in the zone.

      • VaRedsFan

        Well, the early years 2012-2015 is when he caught all of the flack for not swinging at strikes (Z-swing 62%, 67%, 64%, 62%)
        Then what happened in 2017? 71.4% Z-swing (2nd in MVP)
        How about 2010? 72.9% Z-swing (MVP)

        See the difference now?

  5. VaRedsFan

    So they called up some AAA guys for support, and they choose Wandy Peralta to come into a 4-1 game?
    Lorenzen gets the call to pinch hit late.
    We should assume Votto is completely healthy now….since he just played 5 games in 3 days.

    • BigRedMike

      An aging Votto is definitely going to be an issue. That is on top of multiple issues for the Reds. Very few answers in the farm system.

      The Reds are now 10 games under .500 and have a set solid rotation. The Reds are a long long way from the top teams in MLB. The Astros and Yankees are 41 games over .500. Dodgers and Braves are close. The Dodgers and Yankees just bring in players all the time that perform. Two teams that have more challenges than the Reds are 20 and 23 games over .500 in the A’s and Rays.

      The rebuild was a complete failure. It is an example of what not to do.
      Senzel was a solid draft pick. The remaining top picks during this horrible stretch is not showing much promise.

      As Chad noted on a recent podcast, how do teams like the A’s and Rays do so well?

      A’s and Rays are the blueprint, instead Reds fans want long extensions for the likes of Gennett, Dietrich, Iglesias, Galvis, Puig, etc. Once the Reds realize that signing aging/average at best players, then there is a chance to compete.

      The Reds talent level is so far from the elite teams, a total rethinking of a plan is needed

      • Ed

        Wouldn’t Cleveland also be considered a good example of what to do? I’ve actually developed a ton more respect for Francona than I had before this year (even as a former resident of Boston)… He’s a fantastic manager and their FO seems to have their heads on straight.

        Puig FITS in their model, and they’re going to nail a wild card spot. Therefore, what’s the problem with OUR expectations? Reds just have way too many deficiencies all over the field, and an overall attitude that seems to lend itself towards losing ballgames.

        Trading for Bauer was a really bold move, a great vision for the future, and maybe even a way to have added some extra Ws this year. but in it’s looking like it’s going to go down as a total ridiculous, absurd misplay. Maybe he’ll magically get his juice back.

        The Indians DID ‘sneak on in’ after the break, after the trade deadline. The choices the Reds made buried them in the cellar, just three or four games above the Pirates. Such a bummer.

        I do get the gist of what you’re saying- and I’d give you Gennett, Dietrich, and Galvis. I personally think Iglesias could be a good shortstop for the right team. Unlike those other guys, he is a great ballplayer. But when you have 0 bats in the lineup… When 2 or 3 of your 5 starters are just offering up 8 runs every 9 innings… And an unreliable, emotional bullpen that gives away leads…

        Wanting to watch Iglesias for his defensive prowess is absolutely the smallest part of the problem right now.

      • Ed

        Interesting article about this on MLBtraderumors

        “Currently, there are only four players—Diego Castillo, Austin Pruitt, Nate Lowe, and Kevin Kiermaier—on the Rays active roster who can claim that Tampa was their first professional stateside club. Every other player suiting up for Tampa these days was signed, drafted, or developed by a different MLB organization.

        For context, this is far more than most teams in the current AL playoff race. According to Roster Resource, the Red Sox (10), Yankees (18), Astros (15), Indians (19), and Twins (9) don’t even come close to the Rays in terms of trade-acquired 40-man roster players. The only other competitive team with a somewhat similar roster makeup is Oakland, with 25 such players. “

      • Jim Walker

        Not sure I agree about the Reds recent top draft picks not doing well. Hunter Greene (2017) has had injury issues but Jonathan India (’18) and Nick Lodolo (’19) seem to be right on schedule.

        Taylor Trammell (2016 supplemental 1st round #35 overall) was part of the Bauer deal. Jeter Downs (2017 2nd round #32 overall) was part of the big deal that brought Puig/ Woods et al to Reds.

        Rounding out their picks in the top 50 overall from the 2016-17 drafts, Chris Okey (2016 2nd round #43 overall) seems to be struggling with offense at AA level. However Stuart Fairchild (2017 2nd round #38 overall) had a strong 2nd half at AA, is going to the Arizona Fall League and would figure to be a AAA sometime in 2020.

        In a sense, dealing Trammell and Downs for the player(s) they dealt them for was trying to borrow from the Rays or A’s playbook by selling high (on prospects) to immediately put a stronger MLB team on the field.

  6. jessecuster44

    I cannot understand the Votto hate when a subpar Votto is pretty far down the list of why the Reds stink right now.

    There are multiple high-use players on this roster who should be given their walking papers because they have had their chances to figure out how to win, yet haven’t done so. Sending Peraza down was a good start.

    Reds need new blood next year – 3 to 4 vets who can still play well and have won in the past. If they start 2020 with the same core, they won’t sniff .500.

    • Shchi Cossack

      Bell provided 564 PA to 4 players slashing .213/.264/.308 with a .573 OPS. That’s the equivalent of one full time player. Fortunately, none of those players are on the MLB roster now, but all 4 contributed to the miserable 2019 season performance.

    • Jim Walker

      +100.

      If you could make a request for her song what would it be?

      Maybe Turn Out The Lights (The Party’s Over) ? or perhaps something a with a little more edge? Life In The Fast Lane works there for my generation.

  7. Dougernaught

    Take away our start to the season, give us a few W’s in these one run losses and this team is competitive within our division. Winning starts at the top of an organization. Watching this team play day in, day out, you can see the lack of “team focus” on winning. It’s all about “my AB’s”. Just look at the silly defense and base running errors. We have enough talent, just need to learn how to play with an “expect to win attitude”.

  8. TR

    For some heat and interest to be generated the Red’s front office needs to be proactive this offseason, and one of the questions to be resolved is whether they’re going with a veteran double play combo like J. Iglesias/Galvis or start 2020 with JVM at second base.

  9. matthew hendley

    Lucas sims to get the start tonight. AN effort to reset the rotation after the DH messed up the rotation

    • Jim Walker

      Wood’s back reportedly is also barking again.

      The Homer Bailey trade has essentially turned into half a season of Puig and Kyle Farmer for Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray with the help on the paydown for Kemp vs Bailey’s buyout being offset by getting little or nothing out of Wood.

      • Scott C

        Actually we get more than a half of season out of Farmer and in truth just to get out of the Bailey contract I would have taken Farmer straight up. He has been a pretty valuable piece off the bench, particularly when Barnhardt and Casali both went down.

  10. David

    Trying to hit hit the ball hard into the shift over and over is really boring to watch.If a professional baseball teams players can’t hit a GROUNDER down the line in today’s baseball he is useless.Honestly this entire team.They all take a low an outside pitch,best for easy grounder down the line,to swing at middle up outside (which they foul off majority time)so they can drive the ball.Someone tell the marketers I don’t want 4 hats and 4 tickets for 48 dollars,easier to watch at home.Aguino and Suárez swinging for dollars and continuing to lose ,time to stop.Thank god for Jim Day ,hell he only keeps talking because he gets paid.

  11. B-town fan

    What has happened is the site down? There is nothing on here since Monday’s game.