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

Momentum swung sharply and quickly during the seventh inning of the Chicago Cubs’ (33-28) 7-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds (30-30) at Wrigley Field.

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!


After five and a half innings, the Cubs held a 1-0 lead on Kris Bryant’s fourth-inning home run — the first of four Chicago long balls in the game. In the bottom of the sixth, Willson Contreras went deep off Sonny Gray following a Bryant walk to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead.

The sim Reds made a stirring rally in the top of the seventh. After a Mark Payton single and Michael Lorenzen walk against Yu Darvish, Eugenio Suarez singled home Payton. Then Mike Moustakas launched one over the ivy-covered brick wall at the friendly confines off reliever Brad Wieck to give his team a 4-3 lead.

But Robert Stephenson was not able to hold the lead. He surrendered a two-run homer by Anthony Rizzo in the bottom of the seventh to put the home team back ahead 5-4, and Bryant then left the yard for the second time for a 6-4 lead. Matt Bowman surrendered an unearned run in the bottom of the eighth thanks in part to Suarez’s team-leading 11th error.

Cincinnati had a shot in the top of the ninth. Lorenzen and Moustakas both singled off Cubs closer Craig Kimbrel, and with two outs, Redleg Nation commenter/manager Gonzo Reds pulled out his secret weapon, Phillip Ervin, to pinch-hit for Tucker Barnhart. Unfortunately, Ervin grounded out to shortstop Jose Baez to end the game, resulting the Reds dropping three of four at Wrigleyville.

Some bad news on the injury front: Joey Votto was hit by a Darvish pitch in the first inning, and had to be removed in favor of Derek Dietrich. Votto will miss the next eight games and will be placed on the 10-day injured list. Redleg Nation commenters will have the choice of bringing up a player for Tuesday’s game, and then sending that player or someone else down Wednesday when Shogo Akiyama will be activated from the injured list. Or, no player recall for Tuesday would mean that Akiyama will take Votto’s place on the roster Wednesday.

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

A-Pinch Ran For Votto In 1st Inning
B-Pinch Hit For Gray In 7th Inning
E-Pinch Hit For Barnhart In 9th Inning

C-Pinch Hit For Wieck In 7th Inning
D-Pinch Hit For Wick In 8th Inning

Standings following the June 1 games:

Division-leading St. Louis defeated Toronto, so the Reds fell four and a half games off the first-place pace.

NL Central WON LOST PCT GB
Cardinals 35 26 .574 0.0
Cubs 33 28 .541 2.0
Brewers 31 29 .517 3.5
Reds 30 30 .508 4.5
Pirates 25 34 .424 9.0

The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds moving on to Pittsburgh Tuesday for the first game of a brief two-game series against the Pirates at PNC Park. Trevor Bauer will pitch for the sim Reds, while right-hander Joe Musgrove pitches for the Bucs. If the Reds could sweep two from Pittsburgh, it would even out the road trip record at 3-3.

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.

MLB is having a tough time returning while other sports aren’t

Major League Baseball isn’t acting like other sports right now. It seems that the NHL, NBA, NASCAR, and even the NFL are just moving on just fine with plans to get back onto whatever surface they participate on, while MLB can’t seem to get much of anything moving forward. Bradford Doolittle of ESPN wrote this morning about why that is.  He broke it down into several factors:

  • The Calendar
  • The Economic Structure
  • The Nature of League Competition
  • The Nature of On-Field Competition
  • Sources of Revenue
  • Minor Leagues
  • Timing of the CBA Expiration
  • Labor and Management Relations
  • Public Perception and Baseball’s Unique Place in our Culture

It’s an incredibly thorough read and I’d suggest you check it out if you want a lot more details about why baseball is so far behind the other sports when it comes to getting things together. Most of it revolves around the fact that except for the NFL, the other sports have nearly completed a full regular season and have made plenty of revenue already because of it. But there are a lot of little things beyond that, too.

A seemingly insurmountable gap is likely closer than it appears

Owners asked for a billion dollars in pay cuts. The players asked for a billion dollars more with more games. A seemingly insurmountable gap is likely closer than it appears.

That’s the teaser for Craig Edwards piece today over at Fangraphs. Earlier today we wrote about the players proposal to the owners on Sunday with both the health and monetary issues they attempted to address. Edwards breaks down why he believes that the two sides are actually closer than they may appear – while also disputing again the owners claims that they’d actually lose money on games without fans, instead showing evidence they’d MAKE money on those games.

How are the simReds performing?

Every day we link over to Strat-O-Matic’s simulated stats, but there’s a lot of information in these posts and you probably gloss over the links and don’t click them. Well, today we’re just going to share the stats here for how everyone is performing so you don’t need to click the link and it’ll be a bit harder to gloss over, too.

The Hitters

The Pitchers

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 6 1 .857
Peter Onte 2 1 .667
BK 7 4 .636
James Owens 3 2 .600
Gonzo Reds 3 3 .500
Redsfan4life 3 3 .500
Doug Gray 1 1 .500
RedsEuphoria 1 1 .500
Tomn 1 1 .500
Melvin 1 3 .250
AirborneJayJay 0 1 .000
Jeff 0 1 .000
Mark Moore 0 1 .000
Tom Mitsoff 0 1 .000
VaRedsFan 0 1 .000
Don 0 3 .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.

44 Responses

  1. Don

    Play a man short on Tuesday is my vote.
    Have Akiyama will take Votto’s place on the roster Wednesday.
    Looks like Dietrich will get his chance to see what kind of card he has and dice rolling luck for a few days.

    My Lineup for Tuesday.
    Payton – CF
    Ervin – RF
    Winker – LF
    Suarez – 3B
    Mouse – 2B
    Galvis – SS
    Dietrich – 1B
    Barnhardt – C
    Bauer – P

    • Jon Davis

      After pouring over the options I have come to the decision that I agree with Don. The value added is minuscule so my vote is we should just let Akiyama take Vottos spot on the roster.

    • Jon Davis

      On a side note I feel somewhat responsible for the Votto injury since I was just talking about this situation yesterday. To you all I am sorry.

      • Jon Davis

        Thanks Tom my logical brain says that too but I still feel guilty hence the apology

    • BK

      This lineup has my vote. Not a fan of playing players out of position unless necessary. 7 ABs is not enough to write Dietrich off. I think he should get some extra playing time while Votto is out.

  2. RedsEuphoria

    Would love another shot at this! It’s been awhile, and I think my only loss so far was an unlucky one, because if Aquino had not gotten caught stealing in the 11th inning of it, Suarez would have likely knocked him in on the following play to tie it. Especially seemed fluky since Aquino was 7-for-7 in stolen base attempts in 2019; most times he probably does swipe that base successfully. Still, I was fortunate enough to get a win before that, and want to see if my luck will be better this time.

    Here’s my proposed lineup:
    RF Mark Payton
    LF Jesse Winker
    1B Michael Lorenzen
    CF Phillip Ervin
    3B Eugenio Suarez
    SS Freddy Galvis
    2B Mike Moustakas
    P
    C Curt Casali

    • Melvin

      Make a deal with you. Switch Winker in at 1B and Lorenzen to the outfield and I’ll vote for this lineup. I know this is a risk playing an outfielder at 1B but I think it’s one worth taking. I’m a “think outside the box” guy anyway. You don’t have to take my advice on this too but in my opinion Lorenzen is our best outfielder and should be in CF. Payton is better than Ervin and should be in RF then of courser Ervin shifts to LF.

      • RedsEuphoria

        Yes, I am willing to do that! Go ahead and switch Winker to 1B if my lineup is chosen, and Lorenzen can go to CF because he is a little more athletic than Ervin (makes sense). Ervin can take over at LF.

        I am also open to any other changes anyone wants to suggest that is open to voting for my lineup!

    • RedsEuphoria

      To make things easier to sort in the event my lineup is chosen, here is the current updated version of my lineup

      RF Payton
      1B Winker
      CF Lorenzen
      LF Ervin
      3B Suarez
      SS Galvis
      2B Moustakas
      P
      C Casali

      • RedsEuphoria

        Hmm, I have another idea I want to entertain: what if I slot Dietrich in at 3B (where he had 103 games of experience one year with the Marlins), adding another lefty to the lineup (giving us 4), and slide Suarez over to short stop (where he has prior experience in his career), giving Galvis a day off. Suarez has made way too many errors at 3B (11; that’s 7 more than anyone else on the team). Why not try his luck out at SS? He has played 96 games there in a season before with the Reds after all.

        And anyways, if we put Suarez as an occasional SS we always have Dietrich and Moustakas who can handle 3B, providing us with more overall flexibility. This could be favorable vs. RHP (having two lefties and 1 righty thumper instead of two righties and one lefty thumper at 2B/SS/3B).

        I know this may seem like quite a bit of moving around, but I think this type of thinking is best to try out so we can obtain the best results in sim world possible, because if we only have a fixed amount of positions we’re willing to put players, then the overall potential of the team is reduced because of our unwillingness to try out unorthodox things that could potentially lead to success. How do we know unless we try it?

      • Melvin

        I’m okay with using Suarez as our backup SS so we don’t have to carry anyone else just for that as I think it’s unnecessary in the sim world. Galvis being a rock playing really well is one reason for that. If we think he needs a day off maybe giving Suarez a start there wouldn’t kill us but in the long run I think he (Suarez) would be even worse at short than 3B. So again I’m good with your second lineup submitted.

      • AvidRedsFan

        This lineup is interesting. I’ll vote for it… if Dietrich is indeed placed at 3B and Suarez at SS.

      • RedsEuphoria

        OK (update 2.0)

        RF Payton
        1B Winker
        CF Lorenzen
        LF Ervin
        3B Dietrich
        SS Suarez
        2B Moustakas
        P
        C Casali

  3. Redsfan4life

    Here is my proposed lineup
    Payton CF
    Winker lf
    Suarez 3b
    Ervin RF
    Moustakis 2b
    Castellanos 1b
    Galvis ss
    Barnhart c
    Bauer p

    My vote is to call up Aquino then send Farmer down Wed for Shogo

    • Jon Davis

      I was just about to say we already did that because I didn’t see Toms late update from last night. So My vote Now is that Today we callup Aquino in Vottos place Then tomorrow we send down Farmer and activate Akiyama.

    • Melvin

      Yes. I vote to call up Aquino. It makes sense since we were going to do that anyway then send Farmer down when Akiyama returns. With Votto being out a while it should give us a better understanding of who we should send down next between Senzel. Dietrich, and Aquino.

  4. Jon Davis

    Ok on to my lineup, like Don said it looks like Dietrich is going to get a shot here to show what he can do. Lorenzen is a must play to me at least for now. I am putting Casali in because I think he deserves more playing time given how he has performed. Other than that I as usual looked at Musgroves splits and previous matchups including our recent Sim matchup against Musgrove to fill the rest of the lineup and here is what I came up with.

    1. Lorenzen – CF
    2. Payton – LF
    3. Ervin – RF
    4. Suarez – 3B
    5. Moustakas – 2B
    6. Casali – C
    7. Dietrich – 1B
    8. Galvis – SS
    9. Bauer – P

    • RedsEuphoria

      I like this lineup overall, but think we should definitely consider putting all of Winker, Ervin, Lorenzen and Payton into whatever lineup we form vs. the next RHP, only because they are all hitting over .300 right now, and Jesse Winker as a left-handed bat is dangerous vs. RHP, so I think we should try to make room for him?

      Do you think any defensive issues from putting, say Lorenzen at 1st, would be worth it if we are able to put 4 batters into the lineup sporting a .300+ batting average (2 of which are above .350)? Also, when Akiyama returns, how can we possibly sit 2 players hitting over .300 on a daily basis simply because they are all outfielders? I think it might be smart for us overall to consider some of those .300+ hitters playing at 1B while Votto is hurt, or other spots in the infield if need be, because I don’t think they would be too much of a liability defensively.

      • Melvin

        I know what you mean. The reason I suggested Castellanos is because even though he’s not hitting .300 right now he has been coming on strong for the most part and at least if we play him at 3B where he’s played before he wouldn’t be taking up another players outfield spot who hasn’t played infield before.

      • Jon Davis

        Yeah I thought about that but Winker is 1 for 6 vs Musgrove in previous matchups and went 0 for 4 just a week ago when we faced Musgrove in the Sim world. Another note If I was going to take one of Lorenzen, Ervin, Payton and Winker and put them at 1B it would be Winker. None of them have experience in the infield but Winker is the least athletic and worst defender of the four.

      • Melvin

        I agree that if one of those 4 does play 1B it should be Winker. Lorenzen is probably the best outfielder we have.

    • Gonzo Reds

      Going with JD here. Like the lineup and we need another streak and with Pirates for 2 and then back home we have a good opp for it to happen!

      BTW is it too late to tell Strat-o-Matic that I’m a Cards fan and offer to run their stinking team into the ground the rest of the year?

  5. Melvin

    Another tough loss guys. Bullpen has been struggling more often than not lately. We’ll be okay though. Wow. Just as Votto was coming around. Again Strato doesn’t make it easy on us does it consistently taking away our good hitters? Good to see Moustakas with a very good game. Payton still showing there’s no way we can send him down. Lorenzen still looking more like an every day (very good) player than a pitcher. Unfortunately Senzel 0-4 after giving him a chance in CF leading off. Dietrich hitless in 7 AB now and uncharacteristically no HBP yet. Does have 3 BB. Not sure we can count him out just yet with just 10 total AB. I’m starting to get a little concerned about Suarez and his errors with 11 already. Doesn’t make sense but nevertheless is still happening. Of course we have to find a place for him to play to keep his bat in the lineup. A thought just occurred to me. Since Votto is out and he’s (Suarez) already making so many errors anyway, what about trying him at 1B instead of Castellanos and then let Castellanos play 3B for awhile since he does have experience there? If we could do that we would be able to get more of our good hitting outfielders in the lineup which is going to be even harder to do when Akiyama returns soon. What do you think about that idea guys? When we stop and think about it we don’t have that much to lose in that scenario and maybe worth a try.

    • Jon Davis

      Yeah Melvin I have been thinking about similar things, trying to get some others guys into the lineup. Castellanos at 3B, Suarez at 1B or SS, Winker at 1B, Moustakas at 1B or 3B and it all seems worth a shot given current skid.

  6. Gonzo Reds

    Sorry guys. I like this team am only .500, a sad victim of our worse than actual pitching talent. I still think in a close game an Aquino big shot would have taken the day but wasn’t then was then wasn’t given that option, LOL

    I also vote to leave things as they are and don’t bring up anyone until Aki returns. It’s just the stupid Pirates, how can we lose? Clearing throat, I don’t want to hear it, let’s get it done!

  7. Sliotar

    Don gets my vote.

    Don has had good takes/information with this project … and I hope everyone in the Manager’s Standings currently with 0 wins gets at least 1 before the real 2020 MLB season starts (fingers crossed).

  8. Mark Moore

    It’s near to impossible for me to click on the link when we lose to the Stupid Cubs!

    No favorite lineups from the above, but I’m in the camp of those who say play a man short tomorrow and then figure it out.

    • Sliotar

      To paraphrase your famous replies ….. +1000.

      Enough of the Cubs for a while.

      • Mark Moore

        Thanks, Sliotar. If I could adopt a movie line for this streak it would be from “The Jerk” where his father says to put away his place setting from the dinner table because, “It makes me too d*** sad!”

    • Melvin

      Somehow I get the feeling you’re not a Cubs fan. LOL!

  9. Sliotar

    Tom … thanks for posting the team hitting/pitching statistics.

    This is “a” simulation … if Winker is hitting .301 in a real-life, full 2020 season … am guessing his BB/K ratio is better, because it has been so far in his career.

    And, the Reds offense is likely better off because of it.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Thank Doug Gray for showing me how to harvest the stats from the Strat-O-Matic website into an Excel spreadsheet! 🙂

  10. BK

    I recommend we place Votto on the IL tomorrow and recall Joe Kuhnel to bolster the bullpen for, tomorrow. It will be a one day promotion, but it is a chance to try another arm.

    • Don

      BK the suggestion of trying another bullpen arm makes sense to me.
      The stats show that defense is why the Reds are behind the Cards and Cubs. Brewers record is far better than the stats show. They should start losing more.
      The offense is not really the problem with the Sim Reds, it is the runs allowed.

      St Louis ERA 4.04, Allowed runs 4.18(12 unearned runs), Runs scored per Game 4.90
      Cubs ERA 4.25, Allowed 4.47(15 unearned runs), scored 4.72
      Brewers ERA 4.45, Allowed 5.13(43 unearned runs), scored 4.65
      Reds ERA 4.23, Allowed 4.49(18 unearned runs), scored 4.93
      Pirates ERA 4.43, Allowed 4.96 (31 unearned runs), scored 3.71

      Reds have the highest scoring offense in the division (and 2nd lowest ERA) but are giving up to many runs on with errors (must be at the wrong time for the Reds) compared with the Cards and Cubs.

      I would not think adding more outfielders and putting them on defense in the infield is the right strategy to win in this Sim.

      Adding another bullpen arm may be needed (like Kuhnel as you suggested) and send down as outfielder (Senzel ???) when Akiyama is put on the roster Wednesday.

      Also starting players at a better defensive position may also be needed.

      • RedsEuphoria

        Regarding: starting players at a better defensive position might be needed, because we’ve had a lot of errors.

        I don’t know if that’s the right interpretation, because Suarez is far and away ahead of everyone else in terms of errors (he has 11, the most anyone else has is 4). Thus, if anyone needs to move, it is probably him. And we have not dared to put him anywhere other than 3B. If he keeps getting errors like this, he’d have 30 by the time the season’s probably. That’s ridiculous; which supports that we should continue moving guys around imo.

        I can see how you reached this conclusion, but I still think we need to try things out and gauge how well they work defensively, because Suarez should definitely not be locked into 3B the way he is playing there.

      • BK

        @RedsEuphoria … if I understood Tom’s prior explanation correctly:

        If we play a player at a position for which they have no prior experience, the simulation assigns the player the worst possible defensive rating. We’ve played Castellanos at 1B a handful of times. He’s made two errors at 1B–one cost us a game. Small sample size, but his example seems to fit that pattern. For this reason, I suggest we avoid playing players out of position.

      • Melvin

        Doesn’t it seem like Strato itself is inconsistent with this though? I mean it did sub Castellanos in for Votto the first time he got plunked the other day when it had options to sub another player who had prior experience at 1B. We’ve talked about this before and I understand exactly what you’re saying. You’re very smart concerning these baseball things and I have great respect for your opinion. Honestly something just doesn’t seem right to me about this defensive rating though. I wander if Strato changes things some times without telling us or maybe there is something we just don’t understand and it’s not quite like we think. Maybe I’m just hard headed and stubborn about it. LOL

    • Starkvegas

      This is also a good suggestion.

  11. Tom Mitsoff

    Very spirited discussion today! When we have this many ideas and contributors, the chances are better that the decision we make as a group is a good one, in my opinion.

    Regarding Tuesday’s lineup, I counted three endorsements for Don, two for Jon Davis and one for Reds Euphoria. So Don’s is in for hopefully his first win.

    Regarding the roster move, I counted four people saying Votto to DL with no callup Tuesday, Three people said Votto to DL and Aquino up, and one said Votto to DL with Kuhnel up. So we will move Votto to the DL and have Akiyama take his roster spot for Wednesday. (I will ask Strat-O-Matic if that is permissible. If they say no, that we must have a full roster, I will tell them to recall Aquino.)

  12. Melvin

    Behind you Don. I know we’re all in this together and hope tomorrow is the first of many wins in a row for you and our Reds sim team. 🙂