The Cincinnati Reds (65-75) took game three against the Philadelphia Phillies (72-66) last night on the back of Michael Lorenzen making the rest of baseball history look like a bunch of chumps. This afternoon the Reds will look to win the final game and split the series against the baseball team that shares the same city with sports best mascot, Gritty.

Starting Pitchers

Sonny Gray (10-6, 2.80 ERA, 151.1IP, 15HR, 60BB, 174K)

He’s currently in one of the best stretches of his career, and arguably having the best season of his career, too. His ERA sits at 2.80 on the year. In the 12 starts since June 28th he’s posted a 1.55 ERA in 75.1 innings with 29 walks and 89 strikeouts. He has allowed just three earned runs in six August starts.

When looking at his splits he’s been very good against both lefties and righties. Right-handed hitters had a .199/.278/.314 against him. Left-handed hitters are hitting just .203/.291/.339 against him. His home and away splits are pretty much the same, too. On the road hitters have a .596 OPS against him, while at home it’s .621. As noted above, his second half run has been outstanding. Since being a National League All-Star his held hitters to a .166/.270/.294 line with a 1.62 ERA in 61.0 innings.

Jason Vargas (6-7, 4.31 ERA, 127.1IP, 17HR, 52BB, 98K)

The left-handed pitcher has only made six starts for the Phillies this season. He was acquired from the New York Mets at the trade deadline. With the Phillies things haven’t been smooth as he’s posted a 5.18 ERA in 33.0 innings. He’s kept the ball in the ballpark, but that’s about the only bright spot thus far.

On the season he’s had a poor strikeout-to-walk ratio, but it’s been even worse since being acquired by Philadelphia. Vargas has walked 13 batters and struck out just 17. Overall on the season he has 52 walks and 98 strikeouts in his 127.1 innings. High-ish walk rate and a very low strikeout rate usually means a good thing for hitters.

Despite being a left-handed pitcher, lefties have hit him better than righties have. Lefties have a .252/.325/.450 line against him with 12 walks and 22 strikeouts in 122 plate appearances this season. Righties are hitting .243/.320/.403 against him with 40 walks and 76 strikeouts in 421 plate appearances against him. While he’s spent time with two different teams, he’s pitched much better at home than on the road. His road ERA is 5.23 this year, while at home it’s 3.65. Hitters also have a .771 OPS against him on the road, while it’s just .709 at home.

Starting Lineups

Cincinnati Reds

  1. Alex Blandino – 2B
  2. Jose Iglesias – SS
  3. Eugenio Suarez – 3B
  4. Aristides Aquino – RF
  5. Phillip Ervin – LF
  6. Curt Casali – C
  7. Michael Lorenzen – CF
  8. Josh VanMeter – 1B
  9. Sonny Gray – RHP

Philadelphia Phillies

  1. Corey Dickerson – LF
  2. J.T. Realmuto – C
  3. Bryce Harper – RF
  4. Rhys Hoskins – 1B
  5. Jean Segura – SS
  6. Scott Kingery – 3B
  7. Cesar Hernandez – 2B
  8. Adam Haseley – CF
  9. Jason Vargas – SP

Pre-game Notes

Nick Senzel didn’t play in the game last night after being scratched from the lineup with a sore shoulder. He’s likely unavailable to play in the field for a couple of days according to Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Also prior to the game last night we saw Kyle Farmer placed on the injured list with an oblique injury. Jose Peraza was recalled from Triple-A to take his place on the roster.

Earlier today at Redleg Nation

Michael Lorenzen makes history for the Reds on Wednesday night

19 Responses

  1. matthew hendley

    Sonny gray’s push towards Cy Young Votes continues
    Aquino’s march towards ROY votes continues
    Lorenzen’s march towards the Pitcher silver slugger continues

    • SaveTheFarm

      If he didn’t win the silver slugger last year, not sure he can win it this year. Last year he was crazy good and didn’t win it. A few years ago when Votto finished a very close second in MVP behind Stanton and then lost the silver slugger to Goldschmidt I stopped paying attention to this award. The trophy is really cool but the voting is pretty suspect.

      • Broseph

        Oddly enough, it’s the most straightforward award out there with four statistical categories that go into the voting.

        Votto beat out Goldschmidt in 3 of the 4 that year. So yeah, pretty useless award now

  2. Doug Gray

    Breaking: This Sonny Gray fella is good.

    • SaveTheFarm

      Still hard to believe the Yankees wanted to be rid of him so bad. I bet they’d love to have him back about right now.

      • CI3J

        It was a classic case of over-thinking on the Yankees’ part. They wanted all their pitchers to throw sliders, but one of Gray’s best pitches is his curveball. So since they wouldn’t let Gray use one of his best assets and tried to shoehorn him into a mold he didn’t fit, he naturally struggled.

      • SaveTheFarm

        “We are going to move him if we get the right deal because I don’t think it is going to work out in The Bronx,” Cashman told me Monday at the GM Meetings. “I don’t feel like we can go through the same exercise and expect different results.”

        Sounds like he didn’t believe in Sonny…

  3. VaRedsFan

    Iggy…go ahead HR last night.
    Go ahead HR today.

  4. CI3J

    Aquino just had a real Benny Hill moment in the outfield. Don’t know that I’ve ever seen an outfielder bobble a clean hit that badly before.

  5. RojoBenjy

    They are finally going to play their best center fielder 😉

    Would love to see that every day. If Senzel is hurt, why not let Mikey Biceps finish the year there?

  6. vegastypo

    And Peraza to the ‘rescue’ again. Gotta be watching the runner in front of you, Jose.

    Would have had the bases loaded for Iglesias and then Suarez, albeit with two outs. But no, we’ll end the inning right there. The guy cannot find a way to contribute to this team.

    • SaveTheFarm

      Guy can’t get out of his own way, as a human I feel bad for him, as a fan it drives me bonkers.

  7. VaRedsFan

    Taking Kuhnel ou?? Looked pretty effective to me.
    Bring Bowman in, with a long windup, so Harper steals easily.

    • vegastypo

      I didn’t see the stolen base, but radio announcers were saying Bowman didn’t even check the runner at first.

      But we win !

  8. VaRedsFan

    Ervin walks it off. Good for him, he’s been scuffling.

  9. TR

    That was one of the big wins of an on-again, off-again season. A bit of a pay back for the Philly sweep of the Reds in the 2010 playoffs.