Tonight the Reds (69-79) and the Diamondbacks (75-73) meet in the second game of this weekend series at Chase Field in Phoenix. The Reds will try to continue to hurt the Diamondbacks’ wild card chances while going for their third straight win. First pitch is at 8:10 ET.

Starting Pitchers

Name IP ERA FIP xFIP K% BB%
Anthony DeSclafani 148.2 4.06 4.65 4.45 24.00% 7.50%
Merrill Kelly 163.1 4.68 4.72 4.68 19.50% 7.10%

REDS

The most encouraging part of Anthony DeSclafani’s season has been that he’s pitched 148.2 innings. It’s the most of his career since his first season with the Reds in 2015. His K% is up from a year ago, and he’s one strikeout shy of his career high 151 strikeouts in 2015. However, once again, it’s the home run ball that continues to plague him, as he’s given up 28 home runs. While his HR/9 of 1.7 is slightly down from a year ago (1.88), it’s still seventh worst in MLB in 2019.

In his last start, against these Diamondbacks, he pitched six innings and gave up two earned runs on three hits with three walks and three strikeouts. David Peralta is 3-for-9 against DeSclafani and Ketel Marte is 1-for-5 with a home run against him. That home run came last Sunday at GABP.

DIAMONDBACKS

Arizona signed Merrill Kelly last December after he had a 3.80 ERA in his Korean league career. In this rookie season of his, after not pitching for an American professional team since 2014, he’s had a 4.68 ERA/4.72 FIP in 163.2 innings. He gave up three runs in six innings in his most recent start in New York. But in the start before that at home against the Padres, he pitched seven innings of two-hit, shut-out baseball with nine strikeouts.

Kelly has four pitches, but mostly throws his fastball. He’s thrown it 46.7% of the time, while the next pitch he’s thrown the most is his curveball at 21.5%. Throwing his fastball a lot could be a reason for why he has given up a lot of hard hit balls. According to FanGraphs, his hard hit rates are fairly high. His Hard% is at 42.4% and his Med% is at 44.9%. Kelly has also allowed 28 home runs this season. When hitters are making contact with his pitches, they are crushing them over the fence.

Freddy Galvis and Kevin Gausman are the only Reds to have faced Kelly in his career. Galvis is 1-for-2 against him.

Lineups

REDS DIAMONDBACKS
1. Josh VanMeter (LF)
2. Joey Votto (1B)
3. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
4. Aristides Aquino (RF)
5. Tucker Barnhart (C)
6. Freddy Galvis (SS)
7. Jose Peraza (2B)
8. Michael Lorenzen (CF)
9. Anthony DeSclafani (P)
1. Ildemaro Vargas (2B)
2. Ketel Marte (CF)
3. Eduardo Escobar (3B)
4. Christian Walker (1B)
5. Josh Rojas (LF)
6. Carson Kelly (C)
7. Nick Ahmed (SS)
8. Jarrod Dyson (RF)
9. Merrill Kelly (P)

Michael Lorenzen is starting in center field. That is all.

Stat of the Day

If someone tells you that Joey Votto isn’t having a good season, please refer them to these stats. He’s been a .300 hitter since the end of May. Since coming off the IL at the end of August, Votto is hitting .313/.408/.516.

News and Notes

-And speaking of Votto, this Twitter thread from Joel Luckhaupt is quite interesting.

-Enjoy re-living that moment when the Reds last won the World Series. I don’t remember it, because I was a baby, but at least I can say I was born when it happened 😉

-Finally, Happy Birthday to the skipper, David Bell. Hopefully the Reds can get him a win for his birthday present.

25 Responses

  1. Aaron B.

    As happy as I am that Votto has turned it around, I can’t for the life of me understand what he was doing for the first 2 months of the season with his crazy crouched stance and choked up so much on the bat. Was he not seeing the ball well and felt he needed to do that to shrink the strikezone and speed up his bat? It obviously didn’t work out if that was the plan. He has always had a power stroke which combined with his keen eye and selectivity made him deadly and forced a lot of walks. One can only wonder if he had used the normal batting stance for the entire season what might have been the first two months when the Reds offense struggled mightily. They could have really used his normal numbers those first two months. Between that and Iglesias blowing 11 games this could have been a very different season. But alas it is what it is and we can only hope they put together a more consistent season in 2020.

  2. MARK MOORE

    Isn’t this what we’ve been asking for?

  3. Seat101

    One of the broadcaster said that Joey Votto hit that ball “with authority”.

    Whose authority? And did he not have their authority earlier in the season?

  4. Curt

    I’ve been following the Senzel injury story curiously from the beginning and after reading Mark Sheldon’s recent article “Where Does Senzel’s Defensive Future Lie” and noticing a subtle shift in tone from Skipper Bell regarding the matter, I suddenly had the a-ha! moment and saw the picture clear.

    The funny little run-in with the wall was the final straw. The season ending injury will serve as a face-saving explanation allowing Senzel to move back to 2B without the FO having to admit that it was kind of a dumb idea in the first place and everyone will be happy. And people were unhappy, trust me. I’d even speculate that sometime after “the wall”, a certain player called a certain agent who then called a certain FO man and basically said,
    “That’s it, we’re done. We gave it a try like you asked but he doesn’t want to do it anymore.”
    The FO man who’s already arrived at the same conclusion replies,
    “No problem, how bad is it?”
    “He’ll be ok”
    “That’s good, take the rest of the season off, rest up, heal that shoulder and we’ll have him back on the dirt this spring”

    I can’t say that’s exactly how it went down but I bet I’m pretty close. It also fits with what we’re seeing on the field as they have to decide which infielders to keep.

    Good news for me, cuz I want him back in the infield, not sure how others feel but I would bet real money Senzel’s CF days are done. He’ll be on the dirt in Spring. Mark it! -Curt in L.A.

  5. Seat101

    First-year player’s agents do not make that phone call during the season. Exclamation point!

    The people who need to know already know the rookie’s feelings about The happiness or the lack thereof concerning where he’s playing.

    That said, I think Michael runs in is going to start on opening day next year in centerfield

    • Seat101

      I miss spoke or I was miss heard by my voice recognition or both I meant to say Michael Lorenzen

      • TR

        If Lorenzen is in centerfield and Senzel is at second base, I’ll feel a bit better about the Reds offense in 2020.

    • Curt

      And you know this…how?

      (My attempt at humor aside)

      • Seat101

        I can’t tell if you’re serious or not. When you have very little leverage you don’t throw it away on an unnecessary demand or even request.

      • Curt

        @seat101 since you’re not answering my question. I’ll take that as…you don’t know what phone calls agents make or whether the people that need to know things, know them. You’re speculating, same as me. Thanks, glad we cleared that up. Go Reds!

  6. Chris Holbert

    More stellar OF defense, a double played into a triple, and thus the 1-0 for Arizona

  7. Seat101

    31 pitches in three innings for disco.

    Nice

  8. Ed

    Man JVM has a lot to figure out. He’s young- but man. To be fair, I don’t remember seeing him fumble as much when he plays second. He really doesn’t play the outfield very well. He’s better than me I guess.

  9. Chris Holbert

    Once again tonight Murderer’s Row, TB 5th, Galvis 6th, Peraza 7th….DB might as well put Lorenzen 5th.

    • Seat101

      Peraza seventh against this pitcher is a good idea. Unless you’re one of those people who wishes that Perazzo were in the opponents lineup every night

      Them to heck with you

      • Chris Holbert

        I would rather see O’Grady in the OF and JVM at 2B

  10. Seat101

    @ChrisHolbert Much more valid point than mocking the lineup

    • Sliotar

      Reds won last night with 5 hits.

      Could easily do so tonight with less. Just one little poke with Aquino on.

      (Not a recipe for being a playoff team, but we are trying to avoid 90 losses right now.)

    • Sliotar

      Reds won last night with 5 hits.

      Could easily do so tonight with less. Just one little poke with Aquino on.

      (Not a recipe for being a playoff team, but the Reds are trying to avoid 90 losses right now.)

  11. Aaron B.

    Good night Irene, lol, man, Brantley is funny I like the guy alot and offers good insight as well as the comedy. Top 10 draft pick is firmly within our grasp as long as they don’t go on some kind of meaningless winning streak. It’s very difficult to judge Bell under these circumstances.

    • Aaron B.

      I am listening on the radio cause I got blacked out tonight. Good to hear Marty and the Cowboy a couple last times.

    • TR

      DeSclafani’s great one hit pitching over 7 innings didn’t keep the Reds on a meaningless winning streak. And to add to a crazy night, UK loses again to UF in the last minute after leading the whole game.

  12. VaRedsFan

    Blandino doesn’t like to swing at strike 3.

  13. VaRedsFan

    Great outing by Disco.
    7 innings, 1 hit.

    Should be an unearned run as JVM misplayed a double into a triple….next pitch, sac fly.

  14. RedsMonk65

    Reds lose despite the fact that the pitching staff gives up only ONE hit in 9 innings! One hit! Typical of this season. Difficult to win, even with great pitching, when you don’t score.

    Sometimes I really wish I didn’t like baseball or the Reds so much. It will be interesting once post-season begins to watch what good teams do every night.