Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Brewers 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 9 1
Reds 2 2 6 3 0 0 0 0 X 13 14 0

Don’t look now, but here come the sim Cincinnati Reds!

Nick Senzel went 2-for-4 with four runs batted in to lead a balanced Cincinnati Reds (22-24) offensive attack in a 13-4 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers (24-23) at Great American Ball Park.

That was the result today as Strat-O-Matic games of Glen Head, N.Y., continued its announced plan to simulate the entire 2020 Major League Baseball season on a day-by-day basis for as long as actual game play is on hold.


Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:

Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance. Learn more below!


The sim Reds scored all 13 runs in the first four innings as their predominantly righthanded batting lineup lowered the boom on Brewers lefthander Brett Anderson. The big inning was a six-spot in the bottom of the third inning. With one out, seven consecutive Reds reached base against Anderson and reliever Ray Black. Curt Casali walked with the bases loaded to open the scoring, then starter and winner Trevor Bauer poked a hit that knocked in a run. With the bases still loaded, Senzel smacked a two-run single, ending the day for Anderson. (Senzel’s two-hit game could have been a three-hit game had it not been for a web gem by Milwaukee second baseman Keston Hiura, who robbed him of a hit in the second inning.)

Michael Lorenzen, starting in right field, and Nick Castellanos followed with run-scoring singles to cap the inning.

Unfortunately, later in the game, Castellanos was injured while running out a ground ball in the fifth inning, and will miss the next eight games, according to Strat-O-Matic. That means the Reds will play the final game of the four-game series against the Brewers Sunday with Castellanos, Shogo Akiyama and Jesse Winker all sidelined by injuries.

Redleg Nation readers are asked, in the comments below, to nominate a position player who should be brought up from the minors to replace Castellanos, who will go on the 10-day injured list. The player with the most votes by late Saturday evening will be brought up for Sunday’s game.

Strat-O-Matic’s previous listing of position players who can be recalled included:

  • D. Dietrich
  • T. Jankowski
  • A. Blandino
  • S. Schebler
  • A. Aquino

Despite the recent rash of injuries, the sim Reds have won five of their last six games, their hottest streak of the sim season. Winning commenter/manager Jon Davis is now 2-0 in that role and will have priority for submitting a lineup for Sunday’s game. Many of the Reds players who got off to slow sim starts are now beginning to show signs of producing at levels closer to what Reds fans had hoped. It is an indication that perhaps over a larger sample size, the simulation statistics will appear closer to what fans might expect.

For the second consecutive day, all of the other teams in the NL Central Division lost. Cincinnati pulled to within three games of the leading Cardinals, and within one and a half of Milwaukee and Chicago, tied for second.

Here is the sim Reds box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:

A-Pinch Hit For Black In 4th Inning
C-Pinch Hit For Lindblom In 6th Inning
E-Pinch Hit For Suter In 8th Inning
F-Subbed Defensively (C ) For Holt In 8th Inning

B-Subbed Defensively (1B) For Castellanos In 6th Inning
D-Pinch Hit For Bauer In 6th Inning
G-Subbed Defensively (3B) For Suarez In 9th Inning

Standings following the May 16 games:

NL Central WON LOST PCT GB
Cardinals 25 21 .543 0.0
Cubs 24 23 .511 1.5
Brewers 24 23 .511 1.5
Reds 22 24 .478 3.0
Pirates 18 26 .409 6.0

The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds hosting the Milwaukee Brewers at Great American Ball Park Saturday for the final game of the four-game series. Anthony DeSclafani will pitch for the sim Reds, while righthander and ace Brandon Woodruff pitches for Milwaukee.

News/Notes from around baseball

One of the things we would have during the season in the game threads was a section comprised of news and notes for the day. While there’s a lot less going on these days in the baseball world than usual for this time of year, there still are some things that are worth highlighting. When there are, we’ll be adding them to these daily simulation threads.

A deeper look at MLB’s safety plan proposal

Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association have been meeting every day for the last half-week and almost all of their meetings have been around the safety for everyone involved in the game (not just the players, but the coaches/managers/training staff, and non-clubhouse staff that are all required to get a game in each day). Both Jeff Passan of ESPN, and The Athletic’s dynamic duo of Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich got their hands on MLB’s 67-page plan and have details.

Passan’s piece over at ESPN is free to read. So you may want to start there if you don’t have a subscription to The Athletic. But Drellich and Rosenthal’s piece at The Athletic has pictures laying out how team staff and players are supposed to be situated in and around the dugout in order to maintain proper social distancing, and well, it’s something else.

Both articles detail many aspects of testing, travel, expectations, etc. that is going to be in place for the games to happen. Let’s also be sure to note that all of this stuff needs to be approved by both the owners and the players to take place and that the likelihood that this is the only set of plans we see without a single change is very unlikely. But for now, it’s what we’ve got to look at and now both sides get to examine it and discuss it, and if they feel the need, make alterations to the plan to “fix” it.

Amir Garrett hires Scott Boras

For those of you who like to keep track of those sorts of things.

Old Cincinnati Reds footage to close out the notes

Had this retweeted into my timeline earlier today and thought it would be a fun thing to share.

Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:

Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance.

Strat-O-Matic has agreed to allow Redleg Nation to submit the Cincinnati Reds’ lineups for each day’s simulated game. We want all of our readers who want to participate to get involved.

Here is how it will work:

  • In each wrap up of that day’s simulated game, Redleg Nation will post the opposing starting pitcher for the next game. You will know who the pitcher is and whether he is left-handed or right-handed, and you can use that information in creating a lineup for the next game, and submitting it in the comments below. “Splits” such as performance vs. left-handers or right-handers are replicated in the Strat-O-Matic game algorithm, and therefore should be considered.
  • We will accept lineups from every reader who wants to submit one. The lineup that will be submitted to Strat-O-Matic each day will be the one that receives the most positive replies (in effect, “yes” votes) from readers other than the submitter. In case of ties:
    • First tiebreaker: Lineup submitted by the reader who has had the fewest number of opportunities as a “manager.”
    • Second tiebreaker: Lineup submitted earliest in the comment thread. (So get your lineup in “early” each day.)
  • What is “early?” Redleg Nation posts these articles daily between 5 and 6 p.m. Eastern time. Strat-O-Matic’s deadline for us to submit a lineup for the next day’s game is midnight. On most days, we’ll do this before “bedtime,” which is typically between 10:30 and 11 Eastern time.

All players’ batting stats

All players’ pitching stats

Batting and pitching player stats by team

Have fun with this! If you have any questions, please post them in the comment string below. Here are the “managerial records” of our Redleg Nation participants to date:

Commenter/
“Manager”
WON LOST PCT
Jon Davis 2 0 1.000
Peter Onte 2 1 .667
BK 7 4 .636
Gonzo Reds 2 2 .500
James Owens 2 2 .500
Redsfan4life 2 2 .500
Doug Gray 1 1 .500
RedsEuphoria 1 1 .500
Tomn 1 1 .500
AirborneJayJay 0 1 .000
Don 0 1 .000
Jeff 0 1 .000
Mark Moore 0 1 .000
Tom Mitsoff 0 1 .000
VaRedsFan 0 1 .000
Melvin 0 2 .000

About Strat-O-Matic

Strat-O-Matic has been in the sports simulation business since the 1960s. A USA Today article contained this explanation:

Strat-O-Matic and other baseball simulations use statistics from the previous season to create “cards” for each player on a roster. The team managers select the batting order and the starting pitcher. From there, a series of dice rolls and calculations determines the outcome of each at-bat.

Strat-O, as it’s known to longtime players, first gained its immense popularity as a board game. The company has since expanded to a downloadable Windows version and one that’s played online. A few years ago, it introduced Baseball Daily – a new iteration that combined the player cards from the previous season with statistics from the real season being played at the same time.

Unlike many video games, the Strat-O-Matic results are based on algorithms that account for players’ performance based on statistics that their statistical experts project for each player in the 2020 season. It’s not a game played with a joystick that relies more on the skill of the person with the video game controller in his or her hand.

The simulation software will keep comprehensive statistics for all teams for the season, so we’ll be able to track year-to-date leaders in many statistical categories. Our current plan is to provide statistical leader summaries here at Redleg Nation each Sunday. You can follow the season at Strat-O-Matic.com, where they plan to post the results from each day’s schedule at 2 p.m. Eastern time.

30 Responses

  1. Don

    Castellanos injured for 8 games and there are two off days, put Castellanos on IL is a must.

    Woodruff 2019 splits where LHB +47, +73 OBP, +139 SLG, need to stack with LHB when possible.

    Call up Aquino as a late inning pinch hitter. Thought about Jankowski but Winker will be back for next game and a power hitter to replace Castellanos and Senzel may be starting to heat up.

    If Jon Davis does not post a lineup here is mine.

    RF Payton
    LF Ervin (337 avg, should never sit)
    2B Moustakas
    3B Suarez (5-9 last two games)
    SS Galvis
    1B Votto
    C Barnhardt
    P Disco
    CF Senzel (2-4 yesterday, walk and hit in previous games as PH)

  2. BK

    Tom, can you address the implications of recalling Dietrich or Schebler. If we’re playing by normal MLB rules, neither can later be optioned to the minors as they would have placed on waivers. Further, do we have to take someone off the 40-man roster to add Dietrich? Perhaps for the sim, the player rules have been simplified? Just want to ensure we understand any second-order effects of a move we make.

    As for tomorrow, I recommend we recall Jankowski. Woodruff struggles against LH hitters and Jankowski is at his best against RHP. Perhaps he gets one start (or simply shores up the OF for one game) and then heads right back to the minors as the Reds are off on Monday and Winker is available Tuesday when we play at Cleveland and need a DH. We have an opportunity to play matchup both Sunday and Tuesday if we choose to.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Excellent question! I did ask Strat-O-Matic about players we are permitted to send down, now and moving forward, and those are only players who have options remaining. So if we do recall someone without options, he’ll be stuck on our roster for the remainder of the season.

      Of the players from the list above:

      Dietrich and Schebler do not have options remaining
      Aquino, Jankowski and Blandino do have options remaining

  3. Melvin

    All I can say is keep it going! We didn’t bring up anyone to replace Winker correct? That means we’re already playing one short before Castellanos injury if so. Dietrich is an option I guess if we can send him right back down. Another option would be to leave him up and send VanMeter down as they both fulfill basically the same role. We could also send VanMeter down now and bring both Dietrich and Aquino up. I vote that we need Aquino regardless with the DH coming up and Winker and Akiyama returning soon. He would be replacing a right handed anyway. We would have to decide who to send down when Akiyama comes back as it certainly can’t be Payton. May have to be Senzel then although we do technically have a backup short stop in Suarez in a pinch. We could send Farmer down. That would probably be my choice then. I guess my vote in the next few days with Castellanos (sure seems like Strato likes to injury our hottest hitters doesn’t it) being out for eight games would be to Send VanMeter down now and put Castellenos on the IL. Bring up Dietrich and Aquino now then send Farmer down when Akiyama comes back. Make sense? PLEASE don’t bring up Schebler. LOL

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Here is how the roster situation will play out in the coming days:

      1) Tomorrow — we will add the person who the majority votes for here, with Castellanos going on injured list and returning on Wednesday, May 27
      2) Tuesday — Winker returns, but was not on DL, so no roster move needed
      3) Wednesday — Akiyama returns — we will need to option a player to the minors for him. One interesting twist: Strat-O-Matic required us to add an eighth reliever a couple of weeks back because we had 17 straight games without a day off. That streak ends Monday, so we could potentially send back a reliever instead of a position player. I’ll have all of the options outlined in Tuesday’s post.

      • Jon Davis

        Thanks for this Tom very helpful. I am liking that idea of sending down a RP on Wednesday. I am thinking Mahle haven’t seen him pitch in a while but it occurs to me I am not exactly sure what our roster looks like right now or for that matter how big the roster is and the rules. Is it 25 like normal or 28 with 25 active or something else? Sorry if you have already covered this but my inquiring mind needs to know.

  4. Melvin

    I have no problem taking a chance on Dietrich. If he doesn’t perform we can always release him correct? VanMeter isn’t doing much for us and we all know what Dietrich can do for us when healthy. He could be a big impact bat off the bench. So again I vote to send VanMeter down now and bring up both Aquino and Dietrich. If I have to choose only one then it’s Aquino. When everyone is back having both on the bench would add much power and maybe make an opposing manager think twice about things as it could add the intimidation factor.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Melvin, see above — if we bring up Dietrich, he does not have options, so he will be on our roster for the rest of the season. I’m not 100 percent clear on your vote, so let me know.

      • Melvin

        Tom. I’m sorry for the confusion and not making it clear as I don’t want to make it too complicated. As always I appreciate all of your work for us. I vote to bring up Aquino to replace Castellanos. In another move I vote to take a chance on Dietrich to replace VanMeter. We could release Dietrich if we had to and wouldn’t have to leave him up all year if he wasn’t performing. Am I correct on this? Anyway if this happens eventually when everyone is healthy we would have pretty good power from both sides coming off the bench. In the future, not relevant right now of course, I vote to send Farmer down to replace Akiyama off the injured list if we have to send a position player. Did I make sense?

      • Tom Mitsoff

        Melvin, it is my understanding that releasing or trading players is not an option. So let me know if you want to proceed with the idea of Dietrich replacing Van Meter and we can put it to a vote.

      • Melvin

        I think the manager getting what he wants is generally a good thing so I change my vote for the call up for tomorrow to Jankowski. That’s tough not being able to release a player isn’t it? We could have lightning down there in Dietrich that would really help this team but will never know unless we try. Tough call. I’d like to know others thoughts.

  5. BK

    Jon Davis, do you want to start any of the players available for recall?

    • Jon Davis

      I am working on that now. I am leaning away from Dietrich and Schebler since we would be stuck with them. I do like both but not that much. Although I really like Blandino but I am leaning towards agreeing with you BK and adding Jankowski. Yes just decided I am voting for adding Jankowski. You gotta listen to your bench coach.

      • Mark Moore

        Blandino or Jankowski get my vote.

    • Jon Davis

      Oh and to answer your question yes given that both Woodruff and Jankowski have favorable splits I am planning on starting him. If he was the guy getting the callup.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        Jon, you may want to submit one lineup with Jankowski if that is how you are leaning, and one without. I’ll wait until later in the evening to do a final tally on the votes to give people who want to vote a chance to do so.

  6. Jon Davis

    Ok as mentioned above Woodruff dominates RHB so I am only planning to put Ervin in the lineup.

    Tom just to cover my bases I will be giving you lineup options based on who gets called up. This one is my first choice and if Jankowski gets the callup.

    1. Payton – LF
    2. Ervin – RF
    3. Moustakas – 2B
    4. Galvis – SS
    5. Votto – 1B
    6. VanMeter – 3B
    7. Barnhart – C
    8. Desclafani – P
    9. Jankowski – CF

    • Don

      go with this lineup. i change my vote to bring up Jankowski instead of Aquino.

  7. Jon Davis

    Tom, I love this stuff so trust me you will not be lacking options and will know exactly what I plan to do.

    This lineup is if Dietrich gets gets the callup.

    1. Payton – CF
    2. Ervin – RF
    3. Moustakas – 3B
    4. Galvis – SS
    5. Votto – 1B
    6. VanMeter – LF
    7. Dietrich – 2B
    8. Barnhart – C
    9. Desclafani – P

  8. Jon Davis

    Ok if the callup goes to Blandino or Aquino then my lineup is…

    Galvis Votto Moustakas VanMeter Payton Ervin Suarez Barnhart

    1. Payton – CF
    2. Ervin – RF
    3. Moustakas – 2B
    4. Galvis – SS
    5. Suarez – 3B
    6. Votto – 1B
    7. VanMeter – LF
    8. Barnhart – C
    9. Desclafani – P

  9. Jon Davis

    Sorry about that last post I pick the guys then order them and forgot to delete the first part. And lastly just in case but seems unlikely if Schebler got the callup.

    1. Payton – CF
    2. Ervin – RF
    3. Moustakas – 2B
    4. Galvis – SS
    5. Votto – 1B
    6. VanMeter – 3B
    7. Barnhart – C
    8. Schebler – LF
    9. Desclafani – P

    Ok sorry if that was too much but like I said I love it.

  10. Tom Mitsoff

    Looks like Jankowski is the clear choice for recall. So I’ll submit Jon’s lineup that includes Jankowski. Let’s go for three in a row!

    • Melvin

      Tom, I’m still not sure what to think about Dietrich. Of course it’s not urgent so we have time to think about it. I’d like to know your thoughts if you care to weigh in. I think we have to ask ourselves in a worse case scenario would Deitrich be that much worse than VanMeter? They both fill basically the same role and play the same positions. We also have to ask ourselves can Dietrich potentially provide more of what we need than VanMeter as a left handed power bat off the bench? We all know what he’s capable of. Do you think we should post it as a topic of disussion in the future possibly tomorrow or whenever to get everyones thoughts? Thanks and have a good night. 🙂

  11. Don

    From what I can find from Tom(&Red Leg Nation), Strat-O-Matic, Spotrac and Baseball Reference about the current Sim Reds Roster

    Hitters on 26 man roster without options.
    Ervin, Casali, Galvis, Barnhart,Suarez,Moustakas,Votto

    Hitters on 26 man with options
    Winker(can play Tuesday May 19) ,Payton,VanMeter, Senzel,Farmer, Janikowski

    IL
    Akiyama (Can return on Wednesday, May 20)
    Castellanos(Can return on Wednesday, May 27)

    Pitchers on 26 man without options
    Strop,Reed,Bauer,Sims,Disco,Gray,Garrett,Stephenson,Miley

    Pitchers on 26 man with options
    Bowman, Iglesias, Castillo, Lorenzen

    Pitchers that can be called up (all have options)
    Ryan Hendrix,Joel Kuhnel,Tyler Mahle,Justin Shafer,Josh D. Smith

    Hitters that can be called up
    D. Dietrich – no options
    A. Blandino – options
    S. Schebler – no options
    A. Aquino – options

    Trying to think like a GM, sending down a players with options to bring up a player without options (that can not be waived or traded and one has no idea if they have any chance of being better than whom is being replaced ) would not seem to be a smart decision as it ties one’s own hands for the future.

    Adding Dietrich or Schebler to the 26 man roster would seem to be a move reserved for when a player without options is injured and out for the year since these players have the same impact on the roster. If these players are playing poorly, the only option is to not start them as to limit negative impact on the team which limits managerial options. This seems like a high price to pay for a taking a shot that their predicted 2020 cards are going to make a difference for the team. My fear is that Dietrich’s .100 avg for the last 5 months of 2020 is what is predicted for 2020 and his call up is not worth the risk.

    After the 2 game Indians series with off days on both ends, the Reds schedule is 17 games (May 22 to June 9: 7 home(4 Padres & 3 Pirates), 4 @ Cubs, 2@Pirates,4 home vs Cubs) in 17 days before the next off day so I assume that the 7 man bullpen would only be possible for the 2nd Cleveland game then another roster move would be needed to bring a pitcher up for the Friday game vs Padres. I also believe that the pitcher sent down on Wednesday would not be eligible to return for 10 days based on call up rules after a demotion??
    I do not think that any of the 5 pitchers that are eligible would be better than those already on the 26 man roster for the 1 game.

    When Akiyama is ready on Wednesday(2nd Indians game), send Janikowski (it was report here at Red Leg Nation that he has an option but Spotrac says he does not have options) to minors.

    When Castellanos(can return on Wednesday, May 27, 2nd pirates home game) send Farmer down as no need for 3 catchers in Sims baseball. I remember Tom stating that position players do not have a tired/off day need in this Sim so play Galvis at SS everyday, no need for a backup SS like in real baseball.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Don, very thorough! Regarding Jankowski’s option, I used Fangraphs as my source for that information. I will confirm with Strat-O-Matic before we get to that decision deadline.

      • Doug Gray

        Jankowski has an option. I can confirm this. He has been injured to much that several of his “seasons” don’t actually count as seasons. It rarely happens this way, which is why so many places are reporting he has no options remaining because if you simply count the seasons and options used, he should be out. But some of them don’t count because he wasn’t active enough for them to actually count. Weird rule.

      • Don

        Thanks for the clarification. I figured Doug was on it as I remember reading about Jankowski having option in 2020 and the other sites were wrong.