Let’s recap tonight’s game…

FINAL SCORE
St. Louis 2
Cincinnati 4
WP – Leake (4-0)
LP – Wainwright (5-2)
Save – Cordero (12)
BOX SCORE

Positives
Drew Stubbs seems like he’s getting it together, going 1-4 with a 2 run triple.
Ramon Hernandez was 2-3 and drove in a run.
Johny Gomes was 1-3 with a HR.
Another good outing by Mike Leake, followed by outstanding work by Rhodes and Masset.
What a relay to end the game, Heisey, Cabrera, and Hernandez

Negatives
Cordero drives me crazy….makes me a nervous wreck..he’s escaping right now, not pitching well.

ETC.
Rubber game tomorrow for first place.

51 Responses

  1. Y-City Jim

    Is Cordero’s issue control or pitch selection?

    • pinson343

      Is Cordero’s issue control or pitch selection?

      It’s mostly control. Some nites he hasn’t had command of any of his pitches. Tonite he couldn’t throw the slider for a strike. He could throw his fast ball for a strike, but wasn’t locating it well. We were lucky that Masset faced the heart of their order in the 9th. The heart of their order would have sat on Cordero’s fast ball, with dire consequences.

  2. wanderinredsfan

    @Y-City Jim: I think a little of both. Cordero just seems to miss towards the plate too often, and Hernandez just seems to call the exact pitch that the opposition prefers. I truly wonder if Hernandez does any homework on the opposition; it just seems to be too common of an occurrence.

  3. Chris Garber

    Credit to Dusty for getting the right guy in LF. It was an obvious move, but the right one.

    Don’t look now, but “pitching and defense” is really working – 10 games w/o an error, the TV man said. And quality starts in 8 of the last 11 (and 2 of the other 3 were decent outings 7 IP/4 ER and 6 IP/4 ER.)

  4. earl

    Coco has been walking and getting behind on batters, but they also tattooed three hits off of him.

    Nick Masset really looked great tonight, both of those sliders for the K were nasty. The Reds really needed Masset to get it together, as while Lincoln has pitched well, he just doesn’t have the stuff to put often in tight games against top batters.

    Jonny Gomes is playing like a man possessed.

  5. Barnes

    +2 to Dusty for putting Heisey in LF. When Hanigan leads off 4 games in a row I might lay off the fire Dusty train.

  6. Barnes

    As bad as his LF defense is, Gomes makes up for it as best he can with his hitting and those intangibles. Just being a kick ass guy to have on the team. Worth having around for sure.

  7. Y-City Jim

    If Pryce can “fix” Cordero, the Reds can really roll. Even more so if Janish would start seeing more time at SS to really put some “uumph” to the pitching and defense theme.

  8. Chris Garber

    @earl: Baker’s by-the-book bullpen management worked perfectly tonight. Rhodes and Masset – the two best pitchers – pitched to the best part of the Cards lineup. The third-best reliever – Cordero – faced the bottom of the lineup.

  9. crypticphrasing

    Heisey pounced on that ball like a cat, when it got caught briefly under the wall. There were a lot of things done well in that relay, but that stands out.

    Cordero frightens me more than David Weathers right now.

  10. Kyle

    I forget who the poster is that had been to 15 consecutive Reds losses, but that had to be a great way to break the streak.

  11. Kyle

    @crypticphrasing: Yeah, it was a great play by Heisey. The entire relay was done to perfection (I think Cabrera and Hernandez have to share equal credit). I can’t remember the last time seeing a game that ended like that.

    Although oddly enough, the last time I read about one was two days ago and it was Corey Patterson making a great throw to end the game.

  12. Y-City Jim

    I like the fire the Reds have brought into this series.

  13. Steve

    Just got back from the game. Pretty exciting and a great win for the Reds. I haven’t had a chance to read through the game thread yet, so sorry if these observations are redundant.

    **I love the Civil Rights Game. I really wish the Reds would push to host it every year instead of trying to get the elusive All Star Game. It’s great for the community to pull together and it’s a wonderful cause. I hope they build in something for the Latin players next year.

    **The atmosphere in the eighth inning, with Nick Masset pitching to the heart of the Cardinals lineup, including Pujols, was electric. That’s the most activated I’ve ever seen a crowd be over a strike out. Masset is completely back to being dominant. We can focus all our bullpen concerns on the closer.

    **I can’t express the depth of my despair over the role Miguel Cairo plays on the Reds. I can’t disagree with pinch-hitting for Leake tonight, I could have seen that go either way. The bullpen was ready for three innings. But I think Leake had one more good inning left in him. Nonetheless, Cairo is just as terrible as can be. He hasn’t walked in over two years. His AB tonight was a disgrace. There may have been reasons not to use Heisey, Janish or Hanigan there, but I honestly believe that Mike Leake or certainly Micah Owings is a better hitter than Cairo. He has to go.

    **Drew Stubbs is fast.

    **The decision to make Mike Leake the fifth starter, whoever in the Reds organization was pushing for that, is the single most important decision so far this year. That kid totally rocks. Nothing bothers him. He’s a great athlete, too.

    **I hate to rain on the “what a tremendous relay that was” parade, but Orlando Cabrera’s role was pretty bad, honestly. Heisey was amazingly quick getting to the ball, his throw was strong and accurate. Cabrera took possession not that far from third base. The Cardinals runner was basically rounding third when Cabrera caught it. My seat is right at the third-base on deck circle, so I had a good perspective on the play but haven’t seen a replay. When I saw the runner being waved in and Cabrera catching it so close to the plate, I said out loud “He’ll be out by 20 feet.” But Cabrera’s throw was weak and pretty far up the line. Ramon Hernandez made a fantastic play to catch it and get back to the plate to tag the runner.

    **The Reds missed a lot of opportunities tonight, but still they played an excellent game overall. Great pitching until the ninth. Solid defense and hitting in various parts of the lineup.

    Can’t wait until tomorrow’s game for first place. Haven’t decided yet if I’m going to go or stay home and watch.

    • wanderinredsfan

      Heisey was amazingly quick getting to the ball, his throw was strong and accurate.

      Heisey’s throw was strong, but not accurate. It was way off of the plate, towards second, thus pulling Cabrera off-line. It might be part of the reason Cabrera couldn’t get much on the throw.

  14. Steve

    The Reds, pretty obviously, ought to promote Drew Sutton to take Miguel Cairo’s roster spot.

    But there are also a couple of new guys on the waiver wire who I’d like to see the Reds sign over Cairo – Ryan Garko or Pat Burrell.

  15. Barnes

    Some combination of Stubbs, Heisey, and Gomes in LF and CF for the time being seems best. With equal playing time. All three have worthy qualities. Figuring the right amount of playing time is best left to…

  16. Barnes

    I guess give Gomes the lesser part of the playing time. I would love to say just play the young guys everyday to see what they have and get them ready for the stretch run, but man, Gomes is the veteran leader for real. Anybody see what I mean, he plays with a contagious positive energy. The sombrero! A playing time conundrum.

  17. mike

    @Steve: Steve I think you make a couple of points that are important and I haven’t seen anyone else make.

    Who in their right mind makes Leake the #5 starter? I’d *LOVE* to know who in the Reds organization pushed for that.

    Cairo is just a way for the Reds to be cheap. The odd part is, why is he the 1st guy off the bench to PH? Has anyone seen any info on why Nix isn’t available?

    And I think you are right. I really thought the Cards runner was faster but Cabrera with his “speed” almost blew that play.

  18. Barnes

    Big time props to the scouting dept., Jocketty, etc., for picking a college junior with a high draft pick instead of an 18-year-old project. And to know that Leake is ready for the big leagues right now. Good call.

  19. mike

    @Barnes: so who picked Leake to make the team? Price? Dusty (no chance in hell), Jocketty or some combination?

    I guess, lets not forget that we also got a little lucky.
    Harang, Arroyo, Cueto and Bailey were locks

    after that two things happened
    1. There wasn’t much competition. Lincoln, Wood and Maloney. I was leaning towards Maloney.
    and
    2. Lincoln bombed! And it was clear by how he’s done since the 1st couple weeks of the season that he just wasn’t ready in spread training or the 1st week or so. IF Lincoln pitches like he has as of late, he’s our #5. So props to Lincoln for being so awful in spring and the 1st 2 weeks of the season.

    I think an even more important part of the decision with going with Leake is that Chapman is SOOO obviously not ready. It would have been SOOO easy to give Chapman the job and he would have gotten rocked.

    and this brings me to the last point. What happens if Bailey doesn’t get it together? Right now I think you gotta go with Maloney.

    another odd semi-related thing. Owings hasn’t pitched in over a week. With his odd motion and control issues I hope we don’t need him because I have a feeling he won’t be able to find the plate when he next pitches. This brings up an odd issue. We trade Dunn for Owings. Think Owings has any value on the market? He’s just rotting away (not that I think he should play more) on the Reds roster.

    • wanderinredsfan

      What happens if Bailey doesn’t get it together? Right now I think you gotta go with Maloney.

      Did you forget about Bailey’s last start?

  20. Barnes

    @mike: I thought Wood was going to get the call out of spring training. Or Chapman. Evidently Leake is so good that the powers that be were rightly impressed. My point was that the scouts were right in convincing whoever to pick him instead of an 18-year-old shortstop. This guy can help us right now. Knowing that kind of scouting is in place is very encouraging.

  21. Barnes

    Bailey’s gem against Pitt– 71 of his 90 pitches were four seam fastballs. Which says nothing else was working for him. Against the Pirates who were swinging away early in the count, not making him work, everything fell into place for Bailey that night. I’d need to see it happen against other lineups a few more times to feel comfortable with him. Homer needs to have his secondary pitches (curve, slider, change, split) working to be successful against better lineups to have a chance because the fastball just doesn’t move enough.

  22. Josh Rose

    Bailey Pitched a nice game against the Cards last time around and if dusty doesnt pitch to Albert who knows maybe even picks up the win

  23. Barnes

    If Harang, Arroyo, Cueto, Bailey, and Leake hold up throughout the season, what about Chapman coming up to bolster the bullpen?

  24. Sultan of Swaff

    I don’t ask for much in this life, and after 10 years of losing, I ask even less of the Reds. All I want is for them to play a game like this in September. It’s pretty obvious by the crowd tonite they’re starved for something to get excited about. They’ve been teased so much the last couple years that they’re gunshy, but there is something different about this group and it seems they can sense it.
    The guys on MLB Network were pretty suspicious about Leake, basically saying he was getting by on smoke and mirrors. Hey ya dumba**es, it’s called pitching. If he were 33, they’d be raving about his veteran savvy.
    Not too shabby to beat the Cards w/ only 22 guys. I like the idea of exploring the waiver wire to replace Cairo. Nix will be gone as soon as Alonso goes on a monthlong tear. That makes keeping Janish a palatable situation seeing how you’d have two better bats off the bench. Chapman would be ideal as a late season bullpen callup—you give him a taste and limit his innings in the process. He would not be a starter this year if it were up to me, I’d go with Maloney or Klinker.
    Let’s get after them tomorrow!!!!

    • pinson343

      The guys on MLB Network were pretty suspicious about Leake, basically saying he was getting by on smoke and mirrors. Hey ya dumba**es, it’s called pitching. If he were 33, they’d be raving about his veteran savvy.

      Great point. I still don’t (yet) get mlb network on tv, but listen on the radio. Jeff Nelson was on a campaign early in the season about how the Reds made a big mistake with their decision to have Leake in their starting rotation.

      In an interview with Jeff Brantley, Jeff B. said the decision was the right one. Nelson flatly contradicted him: “Pitching to college kids and pitching in spring training is not the same thing as pitching in the big leagues, and this will only hurt his confidence.”

      Nelson and his partner said the Reds big problem was the number one (Harang) and five (Leake) starters in the rotation.
      The other guy said that Harang woud have to come back strong for the Reds to have any chance to contend. Nelson said of course they needed that, but if he does come back strong, they still don’t have a chance to contend.

      What a butthead. I forget how his arrest due to assaulting a Red Sox groundkeeper was resolved.

  25. pinson343

    I just watched the video replay of the final play of the game half a dozen times, going thru it on freeze frame. It was a good play all the way around: Heisey, Cabrera, and Hernandez. The ball died coming off the wall, it didn’t bounce back to Heisey at all. Schumacher has good speed and there were 2 outs (no doubt it was a hit anyway), so he was off and running. Nailing him at home was not an extraordinary play, but there was little margin for error, and when 3 people are involved in that situation with the game on the line, usually someone will screw up just enough for the runner to score.

    With freeze frame I could see Schumacher almost at 3rd, then in the next frame the ball has just left Heisey’s hand. By the time Cabrera is in his throwing motion Schumacher is halfway home. No force out obviously, Schu has to be tagged. Once again, little margin for error. Cabrera used that margin when his throw was a few feet off line, but it was good enough to allow Hernandez to make the tag if he does everything right. Which he did.

    Well done, guys, you had Cordero’s back.

  26. pinson343

    Having told what I saw above, this in no way changes the fact that Janish (at the very least) should be brought in for defense in the 9th, when we lead. Early in the season Dusty did that and Janish dropped the ball on a possible 6-4 that was ruled a hit.
    Apparently, one miscue was enough to convince Dusty to go with veteran presence rather than good defense at SS with a 9th inning lead.

    • Bill Lack

      Having told what I saw above, this in no way changes the fact thatJanish (at the very least) should be brought in for defense in the 9th, when we lead. Early in the season Dusty did that and Janishdropped the ball on a possible 6-4 that was ruled a hit.
      Apparently, one miscue was enough to convince Dusty to go with veteran presence rather than good defense at SS with a 9th inning lead.

      And Hanigan at C would have possibly stopped the ball in the dirt, kept the DP alive, and ended the game earlier.

  27. pinson343

    The word “pesky” was invented for a guy like Schumaker.
    Late in a tight game, I can’t remember when he has made an out against us.

    • VTNReds

      The word “pesky” was invented for a guy like Schumaker.
      Late in a tight game, I can’t remember when he has made an out against us.

      Back in the ’90s, when the Braves were in the post season every year, my brother and I used to refer to Mark Lemke as “that pesky little Lemke!” Now it’s “that pesky little Schumaker!” That was one of the most exciting games I’ve seen in a long time. Nice how it lived up to the occasion. The Stubbs triple, the two Masset strikeouts, Gomes’ towering blast and of course the play at the plate to end it. Like everyone else, the presence of Cairo fills me with despair. I’d love to see them make a strong statement and sign someone like Garko, as was mentioned above. Not many options @ AAA right now.

  28. pinson343

    For once espn Sports Center was worth watching tonite. Because it was a Civil Rights game, it was a lead story. (The fight for first place in the NL Central does not generally make for a lead story on Sports Center, or even Baseball Tonite.) Anyway they covered the game nicely, showing Leake make the Cardinal hitters look silly. The only issue they raised with Leake was how his stamina will be in the second half.

    It was nice to see Willie, Mr. Cub, and Billie Jean KIng there. I’m a tennis fan and like Ms. King. Anyway, they played the audio for Ernie Banks giving Johnny Gomes huge amounts of love. In an excited voice, Ernie says: “What energy, what enthusiasm, what a powerful swing !”

    (Let’s play two !)

  29. pinson343

    PS Of course, Masset faced the heart of the Cardinals order in the 8th (typo above). His getting ahead with his fastball and then putting them away with his slider was a thing of beauty.

  30. pinson343

    I like Stubbs more and more. He put such an easy swing on that triple. The man is strong and oh so fast.

  31. mike

    @pinson343: tonight it seemed like he was getting ahead with his fastball and putting them away with his curve (or is that a sink?) He seems to be throwing fewer sliders this year

    • pinson343

      @pinson343: tonight it seemed like he was getting ahead with his fastball and putting them away with his curve (or is that a sink?) He seems to be throwing fewer sliders this year

      Mike. you’re right, it was a curve ball. I was watching on GameDay, and all 3 out pitches were called curve balls. Later on I read somebody call those pitches sliders, so I called it that. But then I went back to GameDay, which sometimes misidentifies a pitch, but gives at least approximately good info for speed, break, etc. and those pitches were either curve balls or something very similar. It’s awesome that he struck out Pujols on a curve ball.

  32. Glenn

    Hernandez had one heck of a night tonight. Cordero not so much. watching on the network feed, it appeared that his fastball was straight as an arrow. His breaking stuff was all over the place. Maybe Mario Soto should catch a flight north and teach CoCo the changeup.

    • pinson343

      Watching on the network feed, it appeared that Cordero’s fastball was straight as an arrow.His breaking stuff was all over the place.

      Glenn: Yes. And these are exactly the problems Masset was having earlier in the season. I think Price can fix it.

  33. 18to88

    @Steve: I agree. I thought Cabrera’s throw was awful. A good throw and the runner is out by five feet.

  34. earl

    Pretty much with Baseball Tonight or the MLB network, any story even on the Reds or Mike Leake only matters in how it relates on the Yankees or Red Sox anyway.

    The scary thing is if the Reds continue to do well, who will be the first of the talking heads to jump on the band wagon?

  35. earl

    I can give you the lack of range, but c’mon Cabrera made the throw and the guy was out. He had him by five steps, you might throw to that angle to avoid the runner and be able to put a tag, either way it was the most exciting defensive play of the year- just enjoy. Orlando will miss a ball this week that will burn you up in the next few days. The guy does have an 8 game hitting streak and at least once Dusty’s line up seems to be working (kind of scary actually).

    Hernandez also had his best game of the year. To be honest, splitting time between him and Hanigan pretty straight is working out pretty well for both. Maybe it is getting a bit more time off, but Hernandez has hits in his last 6 starts and 2 hits each in his last 4. Combined they are hitting .339 with 11 2Bs, 23 RBI and 24 walks- that is pretty killer. I’ll give you Hanigan is the better defensive catcher at this point, but his bat will come down to earth with more time at the plate. Hanigan should be playing today and the platoon seems to be working pretty well over all.

    • pinson343

      c’mon Cabrera made the throw and the guy was out. He had him by five steps, you might throw to that angle to avoid therunner and be able to put a tag, either way it was the most exciting defensive play of the year- just enjoy.

      Absolutely. Cabrera had to adjust because Heisey’s throw was a little off line, he knew what he was doing. An interesting thing is that you can see that he quickly adjusted the ball in his hand, to make sure he had the right grip. He threw it on one hop, but with good velocity. In short, he knew he could get the runner at the plate and he had good instincts on how to do it.

      I agree with a post above that we’re splitting hairs too much on who did what on the RELAY. The fact is, it was a 3 man play, and they did what they had to do – throw the guy out and end the game.

  36. Furniture City Red

    For every other Manager in the League it’s a no-brainer – Late inning defensive replacements, for Dusty…not so much. At least he did it last night(in Left anyway) , If Gomes is still out there NO Way he makes that play.

    Gomes is hitting good and playing hard, so let him get a few at bats then put someone who can play defense in Left late in the game.

    Hernandez had a good night at the plate, BUT I just don’t like the way he catches…seems lazy at times back there. Hanigan is the superior defensive catcher.

    Stubbs is really doing well at the bottom of the line-up – Note to Dusty…Leave Him There(for a while longer anyway)

  37. Y-City Jim

    @Sultan of Swaff: The MLB broadcast must have been the Cardinal announcers. They haven’t been good since Jack Buck. Even Mike Shannon has gone down the tubes. They all spew that “Cardinals are gods” crap.

    • pinson343

      @Sultan of Swaff: The MLB broadcast must have been the Cardinal announcers. They haven’t been good since Jack Buck. Even Mike Shannon has gone down the tubes. They all spew that “Cardinals are gods” crap.

      Absolutely, Y-City Jim, they’re just “root for the great home team” guys. Shannon went down the tubes long ago. That nightmarish game that the Reds blew a 6 run lead to the Cardinals in the 9th, I had to hear his gleeful “get up, get up baby” (invoking the ball to clear the fence) on the 2 HRs. Both HRs were no doubt about it bombs, making it even more annoying. Too bad, I liked Shannon as a player, part of that great 1964 Cardinals lineup.

  38. Sultan of Swaff

    It was Vasgerjian, Reynolds, and Lark.
    Good point on the final play. If Hernandez gives a decent effort and turns his glove over on that pitch in the dirt, we would’ve gotten a double play and the final score would’ve been 4-2.

  39. pinson343

    Good points above on Cordero’s wild pitch, which turned out to be a big factor. My main problem with Hernandez is his laziness and lack of fundamentals about blocking pitches in the dirt.

  40. pinson343

    @earl: Does Aaron Boone count ? Probably not, but he’s already said the Reds have an excellent chance to win the NL Central.