Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Cubs 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 4 1
Reds 0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 X 3 10 1

Luis Castillo shut out the Cubs through his first seven innings of work in what might have been his best pitching performance of the sim season to date. Castillo’s flash of his potential was the key to the Cincinnati Reds (39-40) scoring a 3-2 win over the Chicago Cubs (41-38) 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 got out to a 3-0 lead after six innings, with the runs being delivered on a run-scoring single by centerfielder Michael Lorenzen, and an RBI single and RBI double by Tucker Barnhart.

Before today’s game, winning commenter/manager Don wrote at Redleg Nation, “fingers crossed that Castillo pitches well on 7 days rest.” As it turned out, “La Piedra” rewarded his manager’s finger-crossing. Through the first seven innings, Castillo allowed the Cubs only two hits and two walks. But he appeared to weaken as he started the top of the eighth. Nic Hoerner led off with a walk, and Castillo wild-pitched him to second base. Ian Happ followed with a run-scoring single, and that was it for Castillo. But reliever Pedro Strop got the job done against his former team, inducing pinch-hitter Hernan Perez to ground into a double play and Anthony Rizzo to fly out to prevent further damage.

Raisel Iglesias came on in the top of the ninth, and yielded a leadoff homer to Kris Bryant to pull Chicago within one run. An out later, Iglesias errored a groundball by Middletown native Kyle Schwarber, putting the tying run on base. But Iglesias retired Willson Contreras and Jason Heyward to end the game and earn his 15th sim save.

The victory pulled the Reds within two games of second-place Chicago, and they remain four games behind first-place St. Louis. Cincinnati is 4.5 games behind the second wild-card playoff berth.

Shogo Aikyama’s third-inning double off Cubs starter and loser Jose Quintana extended his hitting streak to 28 games, and he scored the game’s first run on Lorenzen’s RBI hit.

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

A-Pinch Hit For Quintana In 6th Inning
B-Pinch Hit For Ryan In 8th Inning
D-Pinch Ran For Schwarber In 9th Inning

C-Subbed Defensively (RF) For Castellanos In 9th Inning

Standings following the June 23 games:

NL Central WON LOST PCT GB
Cardinals 43 36 .544 0.0
Cubs 41 38 .519 2.0
Brewers 40 38 .513 2.5
Reds 39 40 .494 4.0
Pirates 33 45 .423 9.5

The 2020 schedule has the Reds hosting the Cubs again Wednesday. Commenter/manager Don will choose the Reds starting pitcher between Trevor Bauer, scheduled to come off the 15-day injured list Wednesday, and Sonny Gray, who is the Reds starter with four days of rest. Right-hander Yu Darvish will pitch for Chicago.

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.

Where does José De León fit in?

When the Reds picked up the right-hander back in November, the move was seen as a low-risk, potentially high-reward pick up of a former top prospect. In his first season back after both a flexor mass injury and then Tommy John surgery, the fastball velocity wasn’t quite where it used to be. But that velocity is reportedly back now.

Where does José De León fit in with the Cincinnati Reds?

Rosenthal: No winners in this negotiaton

Over at The Athletic, Ken Rosenthal wrote about how ugly, and at times silly, the negotiations between MLB and the MLBPA were over the last two months.

Whatever happened, the differences at that point should not have been insurmountable. But as usual, the parties retreated into their bunkers and became more hardened in their positions. The union did not simply respond with a proposal for 70 games. It tacked on a series of additional benefits the league considered excessive, particularly after Manfred thought he had the basis of an agreement. The players also offered the clubs certain enticements, but the league saw little point in countering.

Several Minor League teams suing over coronavirus

According to William Weinbaum of ESPN, 15 teams in Minor League Baseball are reportedly suing five different insurance companies who have rejected insurance claims over “business-interruption” protection claims. One of the teams is the current Reds Double-A affiliate, the Chattanooga Lookouts.

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 3 .667
Peter Onte 2 1 .667
BK 9 5 .643
James Owens 3 2 .600
Redsfan4life 5 4 .556
Gonzo Reds 6 5 .545
RedsEuphoria 1 1 .500
Tomn 1 1 .500
Doug Gray 1 1 .500
Don 2 4 .333
Melvin 1 4 .200
AirborneJayJay 0 1 .000
Jeff 0 1 .000
VaRedsFan 0 1 .000
Mark Moore 0 2 .000
Tom Mitsoff 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.

46 Responses

  1. Tom Mitsoff

    Gentlemen, two points for your consideration:

    1) I asked Strat-O-Matic how they intend to proceed if and when the real season starts. They said they will continue to do daily simulations until the day before the real season begins. At that point, they will simulate the entire rest of the season in one day.

    2) Don gets to choose whether he wants Trevor Bauer to pitch or Sonny Gray, because Bauer is due off the injured list on the 24th. If Bauer pitches, someone has to be sent down to activate him.

    • Melvin

      Thanks Tom for doing that. Too bad they won’t simulate game by game. In a situation where the season is interrupted we could pick up the baton again at that point. I’m still for pushing towards 1st place until the real season begins. We will feel like we’ve won then. It will make it more fun. What have we got to lose? At least we will feel like we’ve been in a pennant race. 🙂

      As a side not I’m looking on the Strato site and not seeing the results of the Reds sim game. Anyone else seeing that?

    • Don

      I am going to have Gray start today as he is on 7 days rest so no need to push him another day. This would slot Bauer in on Thursday so his roster move would be tomorrow

    • Don

      Last I find Gray picthng is June 17th, am I missing something?

      • Melvin

        Don’t think so. Does one more day make that much difference? Don’t know. Your call of course.

  2. Melvin

    Great Win today for Don and our sim Reds pushing towards first place! Looks like Lorenzen snuck in and and when Strato wasn’t looking replaced his “Monster” card with one more to his liking. hahahaha As I’ve tried to emphasize guys, we have a strong weapon/asset that virtually no other team has. That is the ability to carry 14 pitchers on our active roster. All we have to do to activate it is to have the “guts” to play Lorenzen five more games. We must remember that Lorenzen is not like someone else who may go 0-4. His value goes beyond the stat sheet. He is our best outfield defender and all around player. The closest thing we have to a five tool player. Strato recognizes he’s a good defender as it’s put him in defensively late in games. I’m not saying we should play him every game for the rest of the season necessarily but for five more games it should be a no brainer IMO.

    • Don

      Lorenzen is 4-30(.133) in games when a right handed pitcher starts and 13-31 (.419) when a left handed pitcher starts so he is getting a day off vs Darvish

  3. BK

    Congrats Don! Lorenzen and Barnhart came through … well done!

  4. Mark Moore

    Shogo the Strat-o-Monster!!!

    Freddy is still hitting, Nick hit, Mikey Biceps really hit … something fired on all cylinders to beat those Stupid Cubs!!

    Interesting to see if we get to run the remaining she-bang at one clip what happens …

    • Tom Mitsoff

      It will be VERY interesting! We just need to keep this team in contention until then.

    • Melvin

      Something tells me you might be excited we beat the Cubs. haha So am I buddy.

      • Mark Moore

        Always … and the first MLB regular season game I attended was in Wrigley (day of seats).

      • Melvin

        Never been to Wrigley. Although in Florida often visiting relatives I live in Indy and should go some time.

  5. Jon Davis

    Current Roster
    (* = player has NO options)
    (+ = LHP or LHB)
    (^ = Switch Hitter)

    Our current 26 man roster is:
    C – *+Barnhart, *Casali
    IF – *+Votto, *+Moustakas, *Suarez, *^Galvis, *+Dietrich
    OF – +Akiyama, Lorenzen(15), *Ervin, *Castellanos, +Payton, +Winker, Senzel
    SP – *Desclafani, *Gray, *+Miley, Castillo
    RP – *+Reed, Iglesias, *+Garrett, *Sims, *Strop, *R. Stephenson, Lorenzen, *Jones, Kuhnel
    DL – *Bauer (Can return 6/24)

    Guys on the 40 man roster not on active roster
    C – Stephenson(Can Return 6/28), Farmer
    IF – Garcia, +Vanmeter, Blandino
    OF – Aquino, +Jankowski, *+Schebler
    SP – Mahle(Can Return 6/24), Santillan, DeLeon, Antone
    RP – Bowman, Hendrix, Shafer, +Smith

    Finally here is a list of relevant non 40 man players
    C – Chris Okey
    IF – India, Davidson, Colon, Rodriguez, Trahan
    OF – +Friedl, +Powell, Barnes, Fairchild, +Hannah, +Siani
    SP – +Lodolo, Greene, Gutierrez, +Naughton, +Raley, Solomon, Lillie, +Sanmartin
    RP – Thornburg, +Biddle, Romano, +Finnegan, Carpenter, Alaniz, Powers

  6. Gonzo Reds

    Good job Don! I’d probably not do what I did and start Lorenzen too many games in a row, especially since he had 2 hits today but will be interesting to see what you come up with. We faced Darvish recently, you’ll have to see who hit him last time if you have access to that.

    Nice having Bauer and Gray available for the rest of the Cubs series. As to which order to use them I guess give Gray the extra day of rest? As to who to send down for Bauer perhaps Jones? Kuenel hadn’t given up an earned run last I checked so figure he deserves to stay for now.

    • Don

      I would agree that Jones is the one to be sent down for Bauer.

  7. Melvin

    Was trying to figure out how we could only be four games back and realized that the Cards must have played yesterday. Sure enough Miami beat em 11-0. Awesome! Thanks Miami. 🙂

  8. Don

    My plan is to start Gray.

    Castillo pitched a gem, 7 inning, 3 hits, 1 run, 3BB, 3K.
    He had a 2 hit shutout after 7 innings then in the 8th inning, Leadoff Walk (#7 batter), Wild Pitch him to 2nd then a single by the #8 batter to give up the run.
    Strop then got a 463 DP and a fly ball to left to end the inning.
    Iglesias put his normal excitement in the 9th.
    Leadoff HR by Bryant, got Baez out, His own error to put Schwarber on before a 64 force out and a fly ball to Lorenzen to end the game.

    The SIM team has done very little vs Darvish this year do we need another gem by Gray on Wednesday.

    June 1 – vs Darvish 6.1in,4H,3R,1BB,7K
    Senzel 0-3
    Payton 2-3
    Votto HBP – IL
    Lorenzen 0-2
    Suarez 0-2
    Mouse 1-2
    Barnhardt 0-2
    Gray 0-2
    Galvis 0-2

    June 6- vs Darvish 5.2in,4H,2R,2BB, 7K
    Akiyama 2-3 2HR
    Lorenzen 0-3
    Winker 1-3
    Casteallanos 0-2, BB
    Mouse 1-1, BB
    Suarez 0-2
    Galvis 0-2
    Casali 0-2
    Gray 0-2

    Darvish has splits which favor lefty hitters so going with a lefty heavy lineup + Suarez.

    My only questions is whom to hit 6th. See below.

    Lineup
    Akiyama RF or CF (based on whom hits #6 spot)
    Winker LF
    Votto 1B
    Suarez 3B
    Mouse 2B
    Payton CF or Senzel CF or Castellanos RF
    Galvis SS
    Barnhardt C
    Gray P

    Payton is 2-18 since June 3rd (since Akiyama return from IL and Payton is not playing much).
    Castellanos is 10-32 in June
    Senzel (as BK noted yesterday has not been lucky with his BABIP) but he has struggled in this SIM.

    I do not think it is a good game for Senzel to play, so I am really thinking Payton or Castellanos.

    Any others thoughts?

    • Melvin

      Okay Don. Here are my thoughts if they help you in any way. You mentioned that we have not had good results with Darvish and may have a hard time scoring runs. Since that is the case you might consider Bauer instead. He has been our ace. Since there might be a strong possibility of a low scoring game it might be a good idea to think defense first. We always have guys in our lineup who can hit enough for us. I always like our chances when we keep our opponents in a low scoring game. In this scenario it might be worth considering Lorenzen again for defense if nothing else. If not Lorenzen I wouldn’t put Winker and Casty in a game like that together.

      • Don

        Melvin, I knew Bauer was having a better year that Gray but I did not realize he is giving up 0.9 runs less a game. Gray has a better WHIP (1.28 vs 1.48) but Gray is giving up a ton of HRs.

        Hendricks (9-2) is the Cubs starter on Thursday and he has a slightly lower ERA (by 0.3) than Darvish (5-6).

        So is it better to have Bauer vs Hendricks which could be an even lower scoring game.

        You have me questioning my thoughts.

        If I change to Bauer, I would then sending Jones down.

        Can we agree on that while I look more at the pitching in more detail?

      • Don

        Sim Reds have not faced Hendricks yet this year so no old games to fall back on for data.

      • Melvin

        Don’t know about everyone else of course but I agree Jones down for sure. When is Disco’s turn next? He had an excellent game last time as I recall.

      • Melvin

        Disco last outing against the Cards 6/19

        IP 7
        H 4
        ER 1
        BB 1
        SO 9
        HR 1

      • Don

        Real 2019 reds were 2-1 vs Hendricks, in the 3rd game they knocked him out in the 3rd inning shortly after Aquino hit his 2nd HR in 2 innings where Aquino had 3 on the night. August 10, 2019. That was a great game for Reds fans.

        I would hope the Reds can do the same vs Hendricks on Thursday.

      • Don

        Disco next start in Friday (after Bauer and Gray)

      • Melvin

        Since this is “Crunch time”, if we thought Disco would be better we could pitch him on Thursday. During times like this it’s not unusual for teams to adjust their pitching on the fly. As far as tomorrow I’m of the mind that it’s one game at a time. It’s important to start and keep a winning streak going. Your call big guy.

      • Melvin

        Don, I’m confident you’r going to win tomorrow so I’m talking to you directly but to everyone as well. I urge you to look at the stats for Disco and Gray. Doesn’t it seem clearly that Disco has been our second best SP this year? That along with what I posted about his last game, doesn’t it seem wise, since we kind of have this opportunity to reset our starting rotation, to go with Disco on Thursday? That would mean we would have our three best pitchers (since Castillo is coming on strong) facing our divisional (pain in the butt) Cubs.

      • Jon Davis

        And that Jones is the obvious man to go down when Bauer is activated. Also that it is 6 or one half dozen between Gray/Bauer & Darvish/Hendricks, so I say go with your gut Don.

  9. Don

    After looking at what the real 2019 Reds did vs Hendricks (Thursday) starter. I would like Bauer to start vs Darvish on Wednesday as I think that the Reds will score more runs vs Hendricks so have Gray (give him an 8th day of rest) pitch vs Hendricks.

    Thanks for the input Mark and Melvin, it helps me decide.

    Updated Lineup
    Akiyama CF
    Winker LF
    Votto 1B
    Suarez 3B
    Mouse 2B
    Castellanos RF
    Galvis SS
    Barnhardt C
    Bauer P

    Send Jones down for Bauer is my vote.

    • BK

      Good call … Senzel has been unlucky, but he’s got a big hill to climb to offer more than Castellanos or Payton as an outfielder.

    • Melvin

      It’s funny how, when we’re getting down to crunch time, this is pretty much a lineup that could very well have started opening day.

  10. Melvin

    Since Don has just decided he wants to pitch Bauer tomorrow I’m going to try and help us make it easier on Tom counting votes so I’m going to officially ask now. What is your vote for who to send down and activate Bauer? Please make your vote clear at the beginning of your comment. Thanks.

    • Jon Davis

      Jones.

      The mischievous part of me wanted to write this long winding post that said very little to nothing but said Jones somewhere in the middle but clearly I fought the temptation and apparently now I am writing this so I can get credit for not doing the thing that I am kinda doing right now anyway so…… ok Bye

  11. Melvin

    Good news guys.

    #MLB and the #MLBPA continue to exchange ideas with the health and safety protocols. There are no major snags. The union already informed MLB that it plans to play, and be in spring training camps by July 1 with a 60-game season starting July 24-26 weekend.

    By my count that gives us 24 games in our sim season to take over 1st place. 🙂

  12. Melvin

    Hey Jon. Just remember one thing. I can dish it out….but I can’t take it. Don’t forget that…..lol

  13. Tom Mitsoff

    Don’s revised lineup has been sent to Strat-O-Matic, as well as the overwhelming decision to option Nate Jones. Keep it going, Don!!!

    • Don

      crossing my fingers again with expectations that Bauer comes of the IL strong, Akiyama keeps hitting vs Darvish and the rest of the offense scores enough to bring how a win.

  14. Don

    Assuming real baseball starts Friday July 24th
    This is our Sim schedule with record as of June 23rd
    June 24,25 – Cubs (41-39)
    June 26,27,28 – Nationals (48-31)
    June 29,30,July1,2 – @ Dodgers (53-27)
    July 3,4,5- @ D’backs (40-40)
    July 6 – Off Day
    July7,8 – Indians (51-29)
    July 9 – Off Day
    July 10,11,12 – Pirates (33-45)
    July 13-16 – Off Days
    July 17,18,19 -@ Cubs (41-39)
    July 20 – Off Day
    July 21,22,23 – Mets (36-43)

    Not much easy in this schedule, playing 3 1st placed teams outside our division so the Sim Reds need to be at the top of their game.

    Good luck to us all.

  15. Melvin

    Yeah. I was checking out the remaining schedules of the Cards, Cubs, and Brewers. They have their difficulties as well. We WILL prevail. 🙂