Final R H E
Colorado Rockies (22-16)
3 6 0
Cincinnati Reds (16-18)
4 6 0
W: J. Broxton (1-0)    L: B. Logan (1-1)
Box Score | Play-by-Play | Stats | Depth Chart | FanGraphs Win Probability

The Good

Johnny Cueto and Joey Votto. How many teams have two guys like this. They carried the team tonight. Todd Frazier hit a monster shot to dead center in the 2nd inning

The Bad

Jonathan Broxton. Guess who got the win tonight? Don’t anybody ever cite won/loss records by pitchers as proof of their worth.

The Ugly


Not so random thoughts …

The Colorado Rockies came into tonight leading the NL in: AVG, HR, RBI, Slugging, OBP, Fewest Ks. Johnny Cueto could care less. Yes, the Rocks are a different team on the road. But, still….  8Ks for Cueto and only one walk.

This is the third straight 4-3 game for the Reds. Odd. (Correction: 4th straight 4-3 game)

How about Pena in the 2-hole tonight. I love the job Bryan Price is doing. The naysayers can say otherwise, but this guy is not afraid to go outside the proverbial box. It’s refreshing. It’s been long overdue in Cincinnati. When this team gets healthy, the people criticizing Bryan Price are going to look pretty silly.

How strong is Todd Frazier? Good grief. 485 ft. The 6th longest HR in the history of GABP. Only Adam Dunn (535 ft), Juan Francisco (502 ft), Willie Mo Pena (498 ft), Reggie Abercrombie (493 ft) and Alfonso Soriano (492 ft) have hit longer dingers in the ballpark down by the river.

A real show of emotion from Votto as he rounded the bases after his walk-off HR. You could tell the slump was beginning to get to him. And you could tell he didn’t want to discuss it with Jeff Piecoro.



100 Responses

  1. jdx19

    I’ll never forget that Adam Dunn shot. Man.

    Both balls by Frazier and Votto were crushed tonight. Fun game to watch.

    • sergeant2

      The Reds beat a good Rockies team tonight, fingers crossed but the Reds are slowly but surely looking like a team that can do some business this season. Go Reds!

    • Vicferrari

      I just wish I could forget the Dunn years and believing that him a Griffey were going to bring back the glory days. It seems like sometime in in the nid 2000’s I envisioned a team of Every day Eddie, Stormy, and Farney’s residence were the team of destiny

      • pinson343

        It was too bad that Every Day Eddie hurt his arm after getting off to a great (mid-season) start with the Reds in 2006. That Reds team may have squeaked into the playoffs with him. People forget that the 2006 Reds were eliminated by a Cardinals win on the second to last day of the season. They were 80-80 when eliminated. Of course the Cards went on to win the WS.

      • ohiojimw

        RE:2006, the Reds basically called it a season after they left Houston on September 20 after dropping two of three. The lineups were looking like ST lineups.Then back to back to back Cardinal losses caught the Reds attention and they tried to get back on their horses. The Cards went on to lose 7 straight and 8 of 9 before saving their season by winning 3 of 4 in games 157-160. The team that nearly stole the margarine was the Astros. They won 11 of their last 14 including those 2 of 3 versus the Reds followed by a 4 game sweep of the Cards. After the Houston/StLouis series, none of the top three faced each other again which enhanced the drama since they all could win or all could lose on any given day.

  2. Bill Vanover

    That’s actually the 4th straight 4-3 game by Reds!!

    • Vicferrari

      So what is the take, does a great manager win all 4, or just gets his team close enough to have a shot. A great manager manages a great team to win all 4, this is not a great team, so I still have faith in Price

  3. Michael Smith

    No mention of Hamilton’s pinch hit double???

    • Vicferrari

      Tough call not to let Shumaker swing away and go for the steal, Pena doing all the right things, great pick-up by Walt, was hoping having him in the hole would not come back to burn Price tonight and he executed

    • pinson343

      Right we’ve got to mention Hamilton’s double ! With the help of nothing but a sac bunt and a sac fly, he manufactured the go-ahead run that ultimately kept the Rockies from bringing in their closer with a lead in the 9th. Without that run, the Reds probably lose.

      • pinson343

        For that matter, Schumaker led off the 1st inning with a double and scored on a ground ball and a sac fly. That run counted just as much as the others.

  4. Vicferrari

    I think the MVP moment might have been Cozart swing 3-0 (as I recall) in the 7th, he walks, PH for Cueto, and I am almost Positive no Hamilton (let alone no guarantee he repeats 2B in that situation) and you see what the bottom of the line-up did to the best Reliever, I imagine Lecure is out there facing the top of that beast of a line-up in the 8th.
    Also, I know Broxton is getting flak for blowing the save but some props for not wilting after the 2B, tough AB by Arenado and he went after a great hitter got burnt but did not let the line-up turn to the top.
    I said it in the game thread, the past few series feel like playoff games, close all the way through solid starting pitching, up and down, hopefully this is the start of a trend of 1 run games evening out.

    • jdx19

      I think you’re right. Playing two hot teams (MIL, COL) and the defending WS champs (BOS) will give that sort of atmosphere!

    • pinson343

      I’m with you on Broxton. I’m disappointed that Cueto didn’t get the win and it’s ridiculous as Richard said that Broxton got it. But Broxton didn’t invent the stupid rule for assigning wins, and he surely would have much preferred for Cueto to get the win. It’s the first run he’s given up this season and he did not at all “melt down” as somebody said on the game thread.

      He pitched tough to two very good hitters, Cargo and Arenado, I thought he struck Arendo out on that check swing. I didn’t like throwing yet another low, outside fastball to Morneau, he’s way too good a hitter for that. Most importantly, as you say, he kept the game tied after Morneau’s double.

      One thing I didn’t like: Pena standing up to signal a high pitch on 0-2 counts with Broxton. That’s like telling the hitter: “Don’t chase this one, it’s going to be a ball.”

      • greenmtred

        Agree with you about Broxton and, of course, with Richard about the injustice of Johnny not getting the win. Good hitters get hits sometimes, and Broxton’s velocity seems to be returning. I won’t be surprised if he emerges as a critically important part of the bullpen.

  5. NorthernMichiganRedsFan

    I used to live in Cincinnati (I still miss it). For the last three years I’ve lived in Michigan, and have followed the Tigers in addition to my Redlegs. I loved it when the Reds acquired Pena. I really feel like he will be a difference maker this year. I loved him as a Tiger, and I love him more as a Red.

    • Vicferrari

      So was his heart as evident as a Tiger as it appears now, I am with the crowd who suspects he comes down to Cozart like levels, but he just looks like he is wants to play a little harder than a lot of these Baker influenced players

      • NorthernMichiganRedsFan

        He’s definitely hitting above his ability at the moment. He’s a career .261 batter, and you can expect about that from him by the end of the year. He was the Tigers backup catcher to Avila, But every Tiger fan I know loved his attitude, his hustle, and his ability to call a game. I’m not a huge believer in “intangibles” (however defined), but I make an exception for Pena.

    • sergeant2

      What I miss most about Cincinnati is Skyline Chili, LaRosa’s steak hoagies and Frisch’s Big Boy. Oh, and for soft serve ice creme and Bar-B-Q sandwiches with slaw, Putz ice creme stand. The banana shakes are second to none.

    • pinson343

      I’m already a fan of Pena. He reminds of Javy Valentin, the Reds former switch hitting backup catcher who was an excellent pinch hitter. Except Pena is a better hitter and of course a better catcher. (But please don’t stand up when expecting a high pitch.)

      I loved his sac fly – the pitch was out of the strike zone but he saw he could hit it more than far enough in the air to score Hamilton.

  6. Kurt Frost

    I’d like to curse on here so I could tell how I really feel about people talking about Votto‘s mental health.

    • Vicferrari

      I like to use classless, but I am not sure that element finds that insulting enough to rethink their posts

    • Kyle Farmer

      I don’t see those comments, so hopefully Richard or Steve tossed them. I’d like to see the users making such comments tossed as well. RLN is better than that.

    • eric nyc

      You are REALLY fired up about this. The term “mental health day” is a pretty common phrase in baseball circles. It doesn’t imply anyone thinks a guy is actually MENTALLY ILL. Every single player benefits from a day off every now and then and there’s undoubtedly a psychological element to that as well. It’s not just to rest muscles and joints, it’s also a day of not having to study film on an opposing pitcher and not have to put your brain through the process of a major league at bat. No one is more cerebral than Votto so those processes are more taxing on him than anyone.

      • Janet

        Just so you know, the objectionable comments, which appear to have been removed, were not talking about a mental health day. They were much more pointed and totally crass, delving into personal matters. Be glad you didn’t see them. Drugs were mentioned.

  7. Vicferrari

    Here’s a nugget, with all the fear of the brutal opening 6 week schedule, the 2014 Reds have only beaten 1 team with a winning record before tonight. I am not talking series, I am talking win a single game, with all the injuries I will take getting to .500 by June. I think there is a lot of teams hovering around the .500 mark by June; the good teams will start making their separation.

      • Vicferrari

        That is the 1 team until tonight; the point is the Reds are right there with some other perceived good teams because they have beat (-or at least hung with ) other teamsthan the Cubs and Pirates- are the Reds closer to the Padres or the elite teams if there are any

    • redmountain

      I would expect the Reds to be above 500 by several games. However, the Cards are about to spend a month at home as they only play three games away from home But I think the Reds will be ok if they can get and stay healthy

  8. WVRedlegs

    Pena delivers a go-ahead sac fly from the #2 hole and Votto delivers a game winner from the #4 hole. Gotta figure we’ll see more of that until Bruce gets back.

    • Vicferrari

      Ludwick is the perfect 6th hole hitter, I sure hope if Hamilton starts tomorrow they do not disrupt the mojo since it is so important where every one hits.

  9. jessecuster44

    Votto wasn’t looking for the walk, even on a 3-0 count.

    • pinson343

      Yep, I said much the same on the game thread: “3-0 count, Votto wasn’t thinking walk that time. Thank goodness.”

    • pinson343

      PS Even Carlos Gomez wasn’t going to catch that one.

  10. vegastypo

    I just got a belated look at Votto’s home run. In the highlight, when the center-field camera stayed on Votto for a few seconds after he made contact, he sure had a look of relief on his face, as if to say, It’s about time. …

  11. pinson343

    I listened to Price’s pregame interview with Marty B. He said that Chapman is physically ready, but not mentally ready. So I thought AC was going to have a couple more outings at AAA. But here he is with the Reds. I don’t get it.

    Like Yogi said: “It’s 90 per cent mental, and the other half is physical.”

    • big5ed

      Well, Chapman would need a couple of days off after pitching two days in a row at Louisville, so if he isn’t going to play, he may as well be in Cincinnati working with the major league staff as opposed to hanging in Louisville. It’s a better post-game spread, if nothing else.

      Chris Heisey earns a pinhead award in right field for the semi-slide attempt at Tulowitski’s foul ball.

      • Shchi Cossack

        Heisey deserves accolades for avoiding a headlong collision with the wall (wall wins every time!) from an all-out sprint which would probably have resulted in another injury and trip to the DL.

      • greenmtred

        Excellent point, Cossack. I say this because I thought the same thing.

  12. Eric the Red

    I don’t think I’ve ever agreed with THOM! on anything before, but he’s right about that “catcher stands up/high fastball” pitch. Pena called for it with 2 strikes on a couple of batters in the 9th. The pitchers don’t seem to like it, the batters never chase, and Broxton didn’t follow up with sliders away so some of the value was lost. It just doesn’t seem to work, ever.

    Price is taking a lot of abuse lately (in my opinion, unfairly), so I hope he gets a lot of credit for putting Pena in the 2-hole. He moved the runner along in the first, and did a great job on the sac fly. Quality, professional at-bats. (Walt-bashers: pretty good night for his “do nothing” offseason, with Pena and Schumaker, not to mention Hamilton, contributing mightily.)

    Anyone know who Price was warming up in the bottom of the 7th, in case Cueto’s spot came up? With 2 outs and Cozart at the plate, I figure that with a double or better Price would have pinch hit. I’m sure he was hoping Cozart wouldn’t single or walk and force a very tough decision. (Even a double: with the current state of the bullpen and Cueto on a tear, he might have stuck with him. But who was up in the pen? FSO didn’t say anything, of course.)

    • eric nyc

      Schumaker looks like he could be a very valuable piece of the puzzle this year, especially when he can go back to the bench. But he’ll clearly get a lot of spot starts I’d imagine at all three OF positions. Heisey also needs to go to the bench, but it takes a lot of pressure off of Hamilton to have 2 legitimate major league OF’ers pehind our starters for once.

      As for Pena, I love what he’s done as much as anyone, but he just can’t keep it up. Going into last night’s game he had an OPS+ of 144. Last year, For his career he’s 79. You can already see him starting to regress back to his norms. He had two very productive outs last night but he’s not hitting the ball like he was in April.

      • Eric the Red

        I’ll take a guy who can get us productive outs when we need them–it’s not like the team has been great at that kind of thing the last few years.

        Also, he seems to have a great rapport with Cueto. I don’t like personal catchers and of course most of it is the quality of the pitcher, but Cueto sure seems comfortable with Pena. That’s not worth nothin’, as my pappy might say.

      • eric nyc

        I’m actually worried about the Cueto connection. I totally agree with you that he has a great rapport with him and that’s fantastic, especially right now. But when Mes gets back and Pena goes back to being the below average hitter he actually is I really hope we don’t keep starting him just for Cueto. That’s fine for the regular season, but then what happens if we make the playoffs and Cueto starts game 1? Are we going to sit Mes on the bench so Cueto can have his catcher or are we going to start the better hitter who hasn’t caught Cueto all year?

      • Steve Mancuso

        I agree with this concern, not only for the post-season, but for other big games during the regular season (horse, cart).

      • ohiojimw

        It really just comes down to net run differential. Doesn’t matter how the team gets to “W” as long as it does. If having Peña catch Cueto saves more runs than the additional runs they would score and allow if Meso was catching those games, it shouldn’t matter on the ultimate bottom line. And having Meso on the bench allows the manager to spot a huge bat into the line up exactly where and when he might need to which could be the difference maker in a close game such as Cueto’s so often seem to be,

      • eric nyc

        Mesoraco has some experience catching major league ball games. I find it hard to believe that having Pena behind the dish instead of Mes seriously contributes to Cueto giving up fewer runs. And if it is it is fractional compared to the likely long term difference in the offensive production of Mes vs Pena. And if you take it to a post season scenario, you’re talking about a game where we’d be playing against another elite pitcher so runs would be at a premium.

      • greenmtred

        I expect that you’re right about Pena, but as others have noted, his hustle and attitude will continue to make him valuable even if his hitting numbers decline. And he does sting the ball; nice to have some pop from our catchers.

      • Vicferrari

        Agree he probably comes back to reality, but he is not regressing yet…
        People were posting he was evening out during the Cubs series but despite only the 2nd hit-less game in almost 2 weeks that he had last night, he has raised his average from April and hit 3 Homeruns since April 30th

    • Steve Mancuso

      I have no idea whether the hitters can see the catcher stand up. Ryan Hanigan used to do that, too.

      Brantley says (just strictly reporting here) that pitch really isn’t designed to get the batter to swing, although occasionally it happens. It’s designed to “change the eye level of the hitter” so when you throw a low strike the next pitch he’s more likely to swing and miss or take it.

      • Eric the Red

        Yes, but like I said, Broxton didn’t follow up with low strikes. So it’s really a waste. For me the issue isn’t the catcher standing up, it’s the way out of the zone high ball instead of something that’s at least somewhat inviting to the batter.

        Regarding Pena and Cueto in the playoffs: if Cueto pitches like this all year, then yes I’d start Pena with him in the playoffs. 8 or 9 innings of that kind of pitching is worth it, even if Mes mashes and Pena doesn’t the rest of the way. I said in my original post I don’t like it, but I also wouldn’t mess with this kind of success.

      • VaRedsFan

        I hate the catcher stand-up as well. I’m not against the shoulder high pitch, something that a hitter might chase….it seems like there are a lot of walks post catcher stand up waste pitches

  13. Shchi Cossack

    The Brew Crew go down. The Birds go down. The good guys in the wishbone C pick up a game on both teams ahead of them. Thank-you Johnny C. This was your victory even if the W is missing on back of your card.

  14. eric nyc

    What was the measurement on Votto’s ball? I didn’t even see it land.

    • jdx19

      The Rockies’ post-game had it listed as 438 ft.

      • jdx19

        I think it went into the window well where the center field cameras are. But, it didn’t look 47 ft shorter than Frazier’s blast. Maybe 20 ft forter.

  15. eric nyc

    I know it ended up working out, but again with the bunts? If there’s one guy you shouldn’t have to bunt from 2nd to 3rd with no outs it’s Billy freaking Hamilton. Skip has been hitting the ball well and I’d much rather have not given up that out. Ended up being another 1 run inning that could have been more and saved us the 9th inning drama, as fun as the ending was to watch.

    • AnnapolisHoosier

      Completely agree. Price has also done a poor job with the bullpen. Just because he’s been willing to hit the catcher second or Votto second doesn’t make him Sparky Anderson.

      • Kyle Farmer

        I admit there have been some head scratchers, but I think he’s done pretty darn well considering the fact that the bullpen is down Chapman and Simon. Didn’t have Broxton for a few weeks. Marshall can only throw 5 pitches every seven days. And, Hoover couldn’t hit water throwing a ball off a pier. When you look at it that way, I am happy with the job Price has done in that area. All he has had to work with is smoke and mirrors.

      • Vicferrari

        Its not exactly like Lecure looks to be rubber-armed durable, observers say his velocity is down. He was not exactly on top of his game Sunday or Tuesday, people were posting to get Leake out of there after the 6th. He sticks with guys, plus does not blow out arms of the 2 decent relievers he has in May. I did not like the switch of Parra, but he would of done a whole lot better if he gets Napoli out, not sure what options other than Hoover had, guys just did not execute.
        Like I said before he manages that differently in September, hopefully in a pennant race.

    • Kyle Farmer

      I know that math says that it’s actually less likely to score from second with one out than from first with no outs, so I am not in favor of that sac bunt. However, it seems to me, that bringing the sac fly into play by moving a guy from second to third, along with passed ball, etc, might be worth it. I’m sure someone way smarter than I has the numbers to prove me right or wrong.

      • eric nyc

        Sure, if the guy standing on 2nd isn’t BILLY HAMILTON. And if you only want to get 1 run out of the inning. You want Hamilton on 3rd? I can think of a pretty easy way to get him there without giving up an out. At the very least you could put a hit and run on with Schumaker. Yes, the odds of scoring 1 run with a man on 3rd and 1 out is higher than 2nd and 1 out, but we played that inning for 1 run when we had the perfect guy in the perfect spot to make it a bigger inning.

      • Eric the Red

        If ever there were a time to play for one run, that was it. You’re forgetting that Schumaker has been awful against LHP in his career. And if Hamilton were thrown out trying to steal 3rd with no outs and the top of the order coming up, we’d all scream bloody murder. Get the guy to 3rd, get the run, get Cueto his Win (it’s a dumb stat, but again: if ever there were a time…), and hand the ball to a guy who hasn’t given up a run all year. Perfectly sensible.

        By the way, it was a great play by the Colorado RF to get to the ball and cut it off in the corner, holding Billy to a double in the first place.

      • eric nyc

        It’s always “sensible.” But it almost guarantees you’re not going to have a bigger inning and, as Broxton proved last night, everybody gives up a run eventually. Especially against an offensive juggernaut of an opposing team. You have the fastest guy in baseball with a leadoff double and the top of your order up, you play for a big inning.

      • greenmtred

        It’s hard to fault your logic, Eric NYC, except for one thing: BH, for all of his speed, is not a sure thing to steal that base. His success rate is marginal. What isn’t marginal is his speed in other baserunning situations–advancing on a bunt or a fly ball, for example. Hindsight is 20-20 (better than that, actually) but if he doesn’t score that run, Votto’s bomb only ties the game, assuming that it played out the same, which you can’t assume, of course (do I sound at all like Thom?

      • eric nyc

        Doesn’t have to be a stolen base. Hamilton also has a high likelihood of advancing on just about any well hit ball that isn’t to the left side. You open yourself up to a lot of possibilities if you let Schumaker swing there and only a very few if you have him bunt. Against such a prolific offensive opponent, I would have played for more than 1 run. Price played it just like Dusty would have played it and I thought the whole point was to change the philosophy of the clubhouse.

      • Eric the Red

        Eric NYC: In a tie game in the bottom of the 8th with a pitcher available who is pitching well and hasn’t given up a run, yes I’d take one certain run over the chance at a couple of runs. Again, Schumaker is bad against LHP. Are you saying you’d definitely try to steal that base? (Remember, it’s an easier throw for the catcher with a LH batter at the plate.) Earlier in the game I might play things differently. But not in that game situation.

      • eric nyc

        See above. I wouldn’t DEFINITELY have him steal, but it’s certainly a viable option. We played it conservatively and it backfired – Broxton gave up the tying run. Votto bailed him out, but Price played it safe and it didn’t work. I mean we can argue all day about Votto’s homer being the tie run instead of the go ahead run, but the fact is Price played it like you said: Get one run, shut down their offense to make the one run hold up. That didn’t happen. I don’t want to make this a huge thing because it was a great team win, but it was conservative baseball and the kind of conservative baseball most of us around here have become pretty wary of over the Dusty era.

      • Eric the Red

        Eric, I was writing the same time as you. Fine. You wouldn’t steal. You’d leave things up to the possibility a guy who is terrible against LHP will move the runner along. There’s no right or wrong. (In fact, I guess you were proven “right” in that we needed more than a run.). But I don’t think you can say this represents the same philosophy as Dusty.

      • lwblogger2

        Well, no hit-and-run there w/ Schumaker at the plate. I like the idea of Schumaker being given at least one chance to hit the ball to the right side though. The reason no hit-and-run however is the main reason of a hit-and-run is to stay out of the GDP and if Schumaker swings and misses, there is a decent chance that Hamilton gets thrown out because he wouldn’t be picking HIS spot to run but would be told to run on the play.

      • jdx19

        Ok, here are the numbers:

        Situation : Chances of Scoring AT LEAST 1 run : Total Run Expectancy

        Runner on 2nd with 0 out : 63.7% : 1.170
        Runner on 3rd with 1 out: 67.4% : 0.989

        So, basically, in that situation if you are pretty sure 1 run will WIN the game, a bunt is correct, since it increases the chances a run scores by 3.7%. This basically means that 1 in every 27 times, you’ll score a run when you wouldn’t have in the runner on 2nd with 0 out situation. So, not a ton more.

        However, if 1 run won’t win the game (such as early in the game) you decrease your expected runs scored by .181 (basically, you score 1 less run every 5-6 times you do this).

      • eric nyc

        I’m really surprised the odds of scoring 1 run in the two situations are so close. I would think scoring from 3rd with 1 out would be considerably easier.

      • Vicferrari

        Curious what the splits look like in non-sacrifice situation, where you did not intentionally go from the 1st situation to the 2nd…
        One thing I notice is that lots of teams (not just the Reds) do not score in those situations and its not that easy to hit a SF, any trends from Reds the past few seasons to this one as far as SF efficiency/runner on 3rd one-out, another thing I do not get why everyone gets upset when the runner on third gets thrown out on a ground ball

      • lwblogger2

        I have an issue with Total Run Expectancy. While it is a decent indicator for overall strategy, it fails to take into account the pitcher on the mound, who’s available in the bullpen, the current batter, the on-deck and “hole” hitters, and who’s available to PH. Then as you point out by saying that you would have gone ahead and bunted in that situation, it doesn’t take into account inning. There is no way that I would base my strategy solely on TRE if I were a manager. It is a decent indicator of probable outcomes in a certain situation given the past outcomes in a neutral environment.

        I couldn’t fault Price for the bunt if it were my call, I may have let Schumaker swing there. Of course Price would have gotten ripped if it didn’t work out because the book says you bunt there since it’s so late in the game and the math says you have a 1/27 better chance of plating that run.

    • VaRedsFan

      It was 100 % the right move to bunt. your chances of winning a 1 run game with 1 inning to go are quite high. i’m fairly certain that every big league manager would do the same thing…. except maybe with someone who can absolutely not bunt. That was another factor. We had two great situational hitters up that knew how to execute.

      • eric nyc

        That’s fine, but Billy Hamilton is on the major league roster for one reason. It ain’t his hitting. Once you get him on base, why treat him like any other player?

        I’ll let it go, because as you say it was late in the game, but it’s not like we haven’t seen it in plenty of other situations this year. As far as the overall philosophy of bunting goes, Price does not seem to fall very far from Dusty on the spectrum.

      • Eric the Red

        Actually, as regards with treating him like any other player: if our 3rd base coach sent anyone else on the team (except maybe Heisey) on Pena’s fly ball I’m afraid we’d have had another runner cut down at home 🙂

    • lwblogger2

      Fully agree that I would have let Schumaker swing there. I trust the guy to hit one to the right side to get Hamilton over. If it fails, you can tell Hamilton to steal third if he’s pretty sure he can make it.

  16. Kyle Farmer

    I’m a hugger. I admit it. I know that not everyone is. Brayan Pena certainly is, though! He put a major squeeze on Votto last night! Just loved it!

    • Kory Estes

      I know “intangibles” are not very popular around here because they can’t have a number put to them, but Pena is definitely a good pick up this offseason, if only because of his attitude. The man comes to play, supports his teammates, and the broadcast team has mentioned several times that they always see him smiling. That means he’s out there having fun. Even -if- it can’t be measured (therefore it doesn’t exist by some logic), I still believe it does make a difference. A positive influence like that can do a LONG way.

      • eric nyc

        I think most people around here allow for the value of intangibles. I’ve been on the record numerous times saying I think Todd Frazier is much more valuable than his numbers have always been because of his clubhouse value – and now his numbers are catching up. Rolen was also much more valuable than his numbers suggested his last few years here. I think what some people bristle at is the notion that a guy with BAD numbers should be kept around because of intangibles. It’s perfectly fine to give a guy credit for intangibles, but they’ll never be more valuable than the numbers. They can make a good player better, but they can’t make a bad player good.

      • Reed Tom

        In baseball lingo it’s called chemistry. Almost all winning teams have that along with the stats.

  17. ohiojimw

    My thought about last night is that the game showed that maybe all our statistical based hand wringing is really pretty insignificant when the players do what they are paid to do. As the Titanic Struggle recap put it a couple of nights back, “Do Your Job”.

    If there isn’t one already, maybe we need a stat for bases advanced by an AB, however that happens but with a negative increment for multiple outs on a single AB 🙂

    • jdx19

      One exists. Runner Movement Index: A FanGraph person did the work to develop it. I don’t think it’s sortable on any sort of website, but it’s a neat stat. Basically, his hypothesis is that RBI are dumb, so he wanted a stat that showed how many potential chances a player had to move a runner up against how many runners were actually moved up. For example, a runner on 1st can be “moved up” 3 times. This would be equivalent to an RBI. If you have runners on 1st and 2nd, there are 5 potential “move ups.” So, the stat is pegged to be a percentage, like batting average. So, .342 means you moved up runners 34.2% of the way to scoring in every situation you had.

      Like I said above, I have no idea if he’s updated this anywhere for 2013 and current 2014, but the article was written last summer.

      Oh, who was the “true RBI leader in 2012?” Mr. Joey Votto.

      • ohiojimw

        Thanks, this is pretty much exactly what I had in mind. If I retire as planned in the next year or so maybe I will find time to get back up to speed on this stuff and make some sort of contribution. I used to be a DBA/ spreadsheet/ number cruncher but the last two decades or so have taken me to the hardware/ infrastructure side of IT.

      • lwblogger2

        @OHIOJIMW – You and I have very similar jobs. I don’t have much physical infrastructure anymore though as my company put most our assets into AWS.

      • eric nyc

        As fascinating as that theory is (and it really is), Yasmani Grandal ahead of Miguel Cabrera? Not sure how effective of a tool that particular analysis can be.

      • ohiojimw

        So, it is a work in progress. The logical test is that what you said makes sense so one goes back to the data and processing to find out why Grandal was higher than Cabrera. Maybe it is legit and maybe the formulation needs to be tweaked,

        What I am looking for is a bridge between micro analysis and macro analysis. This could be a step in that direction.

      • eric nyc

        I really do appreciate the attempt at coming up with a better statistic than RBI in regards to advancing runners, but any advanced statistical analysis that shows Grandal had a more productive 2012 at the plate than Cabrera is fundamentally flawed. Off the top of my head I’d say you’d have to have a MUCH higher cut off for AB’s to qualify. At the very least, it seems like a stat that would only be useful in combination with a lot of other numbers to have much meaning…I’d assume it would basically turn into wRC in the end. Cabrera led that category by 100 runs in 2012.

      • eric nyc

        Actually i guess by that logic it would be wRC+ in which Cabrera only led Grandal by 22 points.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Grandal really did have an amazing 2012 for only 190 AB. If he’d had as many AB as Cabrera, at the same rate, he’d have had 117 RBI.

        Of course, the broader lesson is whenever you’re using a rate statistic instead of a counting stat, you have to pay attention to the number of plate appearances or innings pitched.

        Otherwise, you’d end up thinking that Zac Rosscup of the Cubs should have won the Cy Young award last year. After all, his ERA was 1.35 compared to Clayton Kershaw whose ERA was 1.83. But ERA is a rate stat.

        Rosscup only pitched 6 innings.

      • eric nyc

        It’s amazing what steroids can do.

      • ohiojimw

        When I was crunching numbers to help run a business some of the the numbers that produced an immediate “that can’t be right” response led to uncovering some of the most useful an unanticipated insights about how we did business. Then again most of the time the first hunch was right. There was an issue with the data or methodology.

    • Steve Mancuso

      We should probably get used to the idea that every time someone says “there ought to be a statistic that shows…” that we’ll learn there already is one.

      Here is Baseball-Reference’s page for the Reds batters this year. If you scroll down to the Team/Situational Hitting chart, you’ll find the numbers (both raw counts and percentages) for Productive Outs, Scoring Base Runners and Runner Advances for different situations.

      Pretty much anything that is countable in baseball is being counted. You just have to know where to look for it.

  18. Eric the Red

    Frazier’s homerun was apparently the longest in MLB this year.

    Cueto’s run of pitching his been astonishing this year. Votto’s homerun was fun and rescued us from having to talk about the blown save, but the real story is yet another outstanding pitching performance. Cueto has gone at least 7 innings in every start, hasn’t given up more than 2 runs in any of them, and has only allowed two runs not scored via the long ball. Yowza.

  19. Eric the Red

    Anybody know who was warming up in the bottom of the 7th in case Price pinch hit for Cueto? The TV guys never said anything (as usual) but maybe someone who was there or heard on radio can fill me in. Thanks.

    • lwblogger2

      They didn’t show it on the screen and I can’t see into the bullpen well from where I sit.

  20. ToddAlmighty

    I like Price’s willingness to change up the lineup and try new things.. so can we change up the lineup and try new things where BP, the 89 OPS+ guy, isn’t hitting 3rd?