The Cincinnati Reds (38-37) play for their 4th straight win tonight and are looking to lock in their 4th consecutive series victory. The Reds haven’t lost a series since dropping 2 of 3 to the Giants at the beginning of the month. Only Jake Arrieta and the Chicago Cubs (31-43) stand in the Reds way of continuing their June success tonight.

STARTING PITCHERS
Arrieta will make his 10th start of the year after missing the beginning of the season with a shoulder injury. In 7 of his 9 starts, Arrieta has allowed just 1 run or less. He has been even more impressive over his last three games: 20 innings, 10 hits, 2 walks, 27 strikeouts and only one run on a solo homerun to Giancarlo Stanton. Fangraphs attributes his 2014 success to throwing a cutter more frequently. Prior to this season, Arrieta was throwing a cutter less than 15% of time. Over his past three games, he’s thrown a cutter for more than 30% of his pitches.

Homer Bailey takes the ball for Cincinnati. His best start of the season was in Chicago back in April. It is the only start of the year in which Bailey allowed 0 runs, and he also went 1-for-3 at the plate with an RBI.

BULLPEN
After getting heavy use late last week, the bullpen should be well rested, if needed. J.J. Hoover hasn’t appeared in the past five days, last throwing 39 pitches on June 18th. The following table summarizes reliever pitch counts over the past 5 days:

Pitcher

Total Pitches

June 23

June 22

June 21

June 20

June 19
Chapman

71

18

33

20
Broxton

58

14

23

21
Ondrusek

31

10

10

11
Diaz

31

31

Parra

16

4

12
LeCure

13

9

4
Contreras

9

9

Hoover

0

LINEUP
Phillips is still day-to-day while Devin Mesoraco remains in the cleanup spot.

1. Billy Hamilton (S) CF
2. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
3. Joey Votto (L) 1B
4. Devin Mesoraco (R) C
5. Jay Bruce (L) RF
6. Ryan Ludwick (R) LF
7. Skip Schumaker (L) 2B
8. Zack Cozart (R) SS
9. Homer Bailey (R) P

MINOR LEAGUE NEWS
Jesse Winker and Robert Stephenson were named to the MLB Futures roster for the USA Team. Doug Gray has the details and 2014 player’s stats.

MLB RULE CHANGE/CLARIFICATION
After apologizing for the incorrect interpretation of the home plate blocking rule during the last week’s Reds/Pirates series, MLB has adjusted rule 7.13 today and instructed umpires to not enforce the rule on force outs at home plate.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS
There was some afternoon rain in the Chicago area, but there’s no forecasted chance of rain delays during the game. It looks like the Reds are facing a tough starting pitcher tonight, but I’ll choose to be optimistic that the Reds keep their record above .500 and continue to chase down the front running Brewers.

GO REDS!

180 Responses

    • Steve Mancuso

      He’s pitched well. But unlike Samardzija and Hammel he’s under team control through 2017. He hasn’t even started his three arbitration years. So I’d be a little surprised if the Cubs trade him, if they think this early performance is even partly for real.

  1. Greg Dafler

    I see that the Royals DFA’d Donnie Joseph this afternoon. He’s the LH reliever that the Reds traded to KC for Jonathan Broxton. He’s spent most of the past three years in AAA Omaha and still striking out over a batter per inning. However, his walk rate with the Royals organization has been in excess of 6.0 BB per 9ip each year. He’s still only 26, and with the Reds recent bullpen issues, it may be worth seeing if they can get him back and back to how he was throwing when he was last with the Reds organization.

    • Redgamer

      Really shows that mid season trades for B level prospects usually works out, Walt take note!

      • Vicferrari

        This why any talk of a fire sale is stupid.

  2. Steve Mancuso

    Joey Votto returned from the DL on June 10. In the 12 games after that, the Reds have averaged 6.7 runs/game. In the 63 games prior to that? They averaged 3.4 runs/game. Not sayings it’s all Votto. Certainly not. Other key players (Mesoraco, Bruce) were injured earlier as well. But Votto’s return, marking the health of the lineup, has been a catalyst.

    • Kurt Frost

      I feel better when he is in the lineup so I assume it makes the guys hitting around him feel pretty good too. Not that that really means anything.

    • Eric the Red

      Yes, he’s definitely played a role. But so has the return from facing a lot of above-average pitching to facing mediocrity. We faced a whole lot of front-line pitching and Reds Kryptonite (like Jaime Garcia and Cole Hamels) in May. Of course, it’s good that we’re beating up on that mediocre pitching, which we haven’t always been able to do.

      • Vicferrari

        I am not sure if there is a debate this team is better with Votto in the line-up? To me Ludwick has played a role, it is a team game, but no one make this line-up better than Votto

  3. Eric the Red

    It’s silly, but the fact Broxton got the Win last night probably helps his case for selection to the All Star team. Setup guys have trouble getting selected partly because they don’t have the big Win and Save totals that generate buzz for the average fan. Broxton’s got a few of both, now to go along with his outstanding ERA. He and Chapman are both deserving at this point.

  4. ToddAlmighty

    Chapman with 71 pitches the last 5 days? It’d look a lot nicer if that was more like 105 pitches the last 5 days… and 9 innings pitched.

    • Dale Pearl

      I think it has been discussed more than all mighty Votto being the greatest hitter of all time on here. Chapman would make a great starter i think we get it by now.

      • Vicferrari

        I have a hard time letting it go and know that he will never pitch a full season, but realize it is just is not realistic given how poor this bullpen is

  5. Steve Mancuso

    While you’re watching the game, vote for Frazier, Mesoraco and other Reds for the All Star game. Leave a comment here with the number of votes you cast.

    • Kurt Frost

      I’m going to go vote 25 times.

      • Kurt Frost

        I get to vote 35 times because I was already logged in.

  6. RedAlert

    I’d bat Jay Bruce no higher than 7th in this order – just in front of Cozart – dude cannot simply be counted on to put the ball in play the majority of the time – has certainly regressed offensively this year

      • Steve Mancuso

        Bruce in June: .274/.337/.534 (since surgery)

        Career: .255/.329/.476

      • RedAlert

        Not throwing in the towel – just too inconsistent and too many ks this year –

  7. mwvohio

    Bailey looks sharp in the first couple innings, lots of break and good velocity.

  8. Redgamer

    Looks like we are settling in for a quiet night, will take a 1-0 win.

  9. jas428

    60 for Frazier, Mes and my favorite Red.

  10. jcredlegs

    This kid Arrieta is pounding the strike zone. Great command. Going to be tough to score much tonight.

    • RedsfanPa

      He has 27 strikeouts in his last 3 starts, getting that run will be may be enough the way he is pitching. Hopefully the Reds can get it going.

  11. sergeant2

    I just voted 10 times, I get a total of 35 votes. I’ll vote my limit well before the deadline. They sure don’t make it easy, you have to re-log in every time you want to vote again, and fill in all the info. date of birth, zip code, the kinda hard to see numbers in that little rectangular box, and you have to remember to uncheck the little boxes so you don’t receive e-mails. Takes me especially longer because I have to scroll forever to reach year of birth. But well worth it to support my Cincinnati Redlegs. Go Reds!

  12. ToddAlmighty

    What kind of fly ball was that for out #3? Because on Gameday it showed the landing spot like.. almost behind the warning track. Was it a stolen HR or something?

  13. jcredlegs

    Well the way Arrieta is going that Rizzo HR may be enough.

    • jcredlegs

      Seriously, this kid has no-hit stuff tonight.

    • ToddAlmighty

      Yes, because the rest of the lineup is doing so well that we should focus on just Bruce.

      Marty, is that you?

  14. sergeant2

    I’m not ready to wave the white flag yet, not when its the top of the 5th inning.

    • ToddAlmighty

      That might be it right there though. 2-0, with a runner on 2nd and no outs. If this becomes 3-0, it might be white flag time. Reds can’t come back from a 3 run deficit like that. Don’t believe they’ve done it all year.

      • ToddAlmighty

        Ah, my bad. Runner out at 3rd. Tried to test Bruce’s arm.

  15. Greg Schiller

    Votto is far from a great hitter this year. Chapman would not be a great starter either.

    • I H8 Dusty

      Let’s face it, what Reds fan wouldn’t trade Votto for Rizzo? Votto’s contract is going to paralyze this franchise for a decade.

  16. sergeant2

    Seems like things happened lightning quick that inning. Reds were fortunate to get that gift out at 3rd. Time for the Reds to do some business, gotta crack the ice. Go Reds!

    • ToddAlmighty

      I’m a bit amazed that they didn’t test Bruce’s arm by trying to tag up and go home the other day, but they tested his arm trying to squeeze a triple out of a double with no outs. Just odd to push on one and not the other.

    • RedsfanPa

      Yeah, he will no doubt have double digit K’s just like his last start….

  17. MrRed

    Boy oh boy! I have a bad feeling about this is going to turn out the way Arrieta is pitching tonight. Some great stuff but also some nice breaks on some hard hit balls.

    • jcredlegs

      Feels like a no-hitter kinda night to me.

      • MrRed

        I sure hope not but the conditions just seem ripe for it.

  18. ToddAlmighty

    Can’t let a Stupid Cub throw a perfect game against you… have some self respect, Reds hitters…

    • ToddAlmighty

      This guy had a good ERA and K/9, but he has a 1.200 WHIP and averages under 6 innings per start this year. He has a career 4.88 ERA for crying out loud. Or should I say Cying out loud?

  19. jcredlegs

    100 votes for Todd, Mez, BP and The Kid.

  20. charlottencredsfan

    Top of the 7th will be our best chance. Billy just has to reach base one way or the other; the havoc can then commence. IMO, it’s games like this is where Hamilton can do what others can’t. Arrieta has no-hit stuff tonight if I have ever seen it.

    Go Reds!

  21. wildwestlv

    Homer’s making it easy, even on Arrieta.

  22. Kyle

    What a brutal division. Brewers and Cards come back from early deficits, now hold 1 run leads. Feels impossible to make up ground.

    • I H8 Dusty

      Especially when the Reds can’t put together a run of wins … get used to it

  23. ProspectCincy

    Bullpen is fresh; Rizzo has had two very strong AB’s vs. Bailey … this is the kind of decision I would love to see Price make.

    But I dream.

  24. charlottencredsfan

    Sacrilegious I realize but I would trade JV for Rizzo tomorrow morning.

    • jcredlegs

      Indeed. But Cubs wouldn’t do it.

  25. wildwestlv

    I think Homer’s thinking more about the perfect game than Arrieta is.

  26. charlottencredsfan

    Jeez Homer, here comes the meltdown.

  27. wildwestlv

    Homer-haters going to love tonight.

    • charlottencredsfan

      Heck, second half he could pitch three SHO and a no-hitter. Just frustration, no hate.

  28. Kyle

    Disappointing season continues for Homer. 2 bbs, 1 bhp, 1 single. Verge of a big inning.

  29. RedAlert

    That’s on you Bryan Baker !!!! Waited a hitter too late- when Homer loses it he loses it – geeze !!!!!

    • jcredlegs

      And now we get Home Run Hoover. This oughta be interesting.

  30. ProspectCincy

    Waited two hitters too long. When you walk the opposing pitcher to lead off the sixth inning … you get the bullpen ready immediately.

    Rizzo should never have hit vs. Bailey. But Price always waits too long w/ the SP’s.

  31. RedAlert

    JJ with his blowtorch to the mound – ballgame 4-0 forget it

  32. ProspectCincy

    Just a terrific play by Hamilton there. No other CF makes that play.

    Saved a few runs; but not the game.

  33. sergeant2

    Good catch and throw by BHam. One of the reasons he got my All-Star vote ten times tonight. Go Reds!

  34. Redgamer

    Please just break up the perfect game now.

  35. ToddAlmighty

    Wasn’t Bailey’s season just a bad start and he was supposed to transform back into the $18m/yr pitcher who people were throwing the Ace term around about?

    Shows what two no hitters will do for your career, regardless of other results.

    • jcredlegs

      I concur. Back of his baseball card says .500 pitcher with an ERA above 4. I suspect that’s what he’ll turn out to be. Reminds me a lot of Jon Garland.

  36. sergeant2

    Hamilton, Votto and Frazier due up. Sounds like a recipe for some runs. Go Reds!

  37. wildwestlv

    Losing against the Cubs is always embarrassing. Losing by getting shutout, in a no-hitter, perfect game is flat-out pathetic. Upside is, nobody will remember Friday night’s game, vs. Toronto, after this. You never know how low you can go.

  38. charlottencredsfan

    Who else but BHam?? Now let’s get some runs and win this game!

  39. MrRed

    Atta boy Billy! Now let’s make something of it!

  40. ToddAlmighty

    Perfect game AND no hitter broken. Mission accomplished, Billy.

  41. ToddAlmighty

    I guess he had to get at least 1 hit. His hitting streak is at 11 games now, isn’t it?

      • ToddAlmighty

        Even better. One more and he reaches the teens. That’s the kind of hot streak a RoY needs.

  42. jcredlegs

    Good for you Billy. At least we won’t get no hit.

  43. wildwestlv

    Bucs took care of business (against a really bad team). Brewers leading Nats. Cards are coming back (down 1) against the Rockies.

  44. ToddAlmighty

    No shut out! There we go, even if they lose now, no perfect game, no no-hitter, no shutout.

  45. RedAlert

    Ok – that crow tastes good Jay !

    • ToddAlmighty

      If it’s a little too dry, you can use some Jay-#1 Steaksauce.

      • ToddAlmighty

        One K just dropped his ERA from 27.00 to 20.25. Small sample size ERAs always crack me up when I see stuff like that.

      • ToddAlmighty

        Not sure why that went there.

  46. ToddAlmighty

    Yeah, Bruce is totally a lost cause. Just let that dumpster fire burn. Write it off. (Sarcasm)

  47. charlottencredsfan

    Boo-ya! Arrieta is at 90 pitches, he won’t finish. Reds can certainly win this. JBruce!!

  48. SPRO

    Dusty Baker style managing, Cubs just now getting someone up in the pen.

  49. ToddAlmighty

    Hey, no better time than against the Stupid Cubs to get their first 3 or more run comeback win of the season.

  50. RedAlert

    Ok got it cut in half – gotta keep scratching !

  51. Joe Atkinson

    Gotta give Home credit for a great strategy: Totally implode in the 6th inning so Arrieta has time to sit in the dugout, cool off, and think about what he’s doing for a while. That’s how you break up a no-hitter, Homer! Strategery!

  52. Jake

    What in the world happened to Homer? Up till the 4th inning he’s great but after that he goes downhill big time

    • sergeant2

      It seems Homer has a penchant for losing it for an inning, but than usually gets it together quickly and gets in a good groove for several innings. Not tonight though.

  53. charlottencredsfan

    Really great inning by Jumbo. Welcome to the show, Big Guy!

  54. ToddAlmighty

    Good job by Jumbo. Clean inning, 2 K. ERA goes from 27.00 to 13.50

  55. Redgamer

    Jumbo looking better against MLB hitters, well I mean Cubs who are are all hitting below .200.

    • Redgamer

      But it was a good call for Price to get him in, get some confidence.

  56. jcredlegs

    All right Jumbo! C’mon boys, let’s get him that first MLB win!

  57. sergeant2

    Don’t know much about this Cubs manager, but usually when a Cubs manager starts doing stuff, bad things happen. (for the Cubs that is)

    • ToddAlmighty

      If we wanted to get rid of fan voting, we should just massively flood the box for Cozart. Make him the starter over Tulo.

      • ToddAlmighty

        Granted, it’s equally bad that Wright and Molina will end up being starters.. but at least they have name power.

  58. charlottencredsfan

    Ooooooooh, things are getting very interesting.

  59. jcredlegs

    Cozart will never ever be a good hitter until he stops being so aggressive. Surely the Reds have someone who can help him with that. He gives away AB’s way too often.

    • Redgamer

      The first part of that first sentence is the most accurate.

  60. jcredlegs

    Oh Billy. Why you swing at the first pitch?

  61. sergeant2

    The Cubs manager needs to breath into paper bag to stop from hyperventilating.

  62. jcredlegs

    If we could somehow tie this up it would be advantage Reds. Renteria blowing through his whole bullpen this inning.

  63. Jake

    Sigh, we didn’t need a groundout Frazier

  64. ProspectCincy

    Manny Parra OK? Two lefties due up here … strange to see Parra not be used.

    Has only thrown 1 innings in 10 days. 🙁

    • jcredlegs

      And Price makes the wrong call again. I truly believe he doesn’t know what he’s doing. Very unimpressive when it comes to handling the bullpen.

    • ProspectCincy

      Bryan Price … what are you thinking?

      Is there a reason he refuses to throw left handed pitchers against Rizzo? I understand that Rizzo has hit lefties well this year (small sample size) but he’s a .217 career hitter against LHP.

      Sam I am … time for you to go.

      • pinson343

        I didn’t see single bad pitch by Sam. Horrible defense.

  65. RedAlert

    Why Is Sam Lecure still in Bryan Price ?????

    • RedsfanPa

      To give up more runs…..Ugh!! : /

    • RedAlert

      Goodnight – ballgame – Votto pitiful glove work – Sam unimpressive – Bryan Prices bullpen management = atrocious again !

  66. Kyle

    Well, that should be game. Bad error there.

  67. Jake

    Game is over now, unfortunately. Votto watched the ball go right between his legs

  68. Greg Schiller

    Votto cannot field his position and he cannot hit. All he does is walk.

      • jcredlegs

        Not I. Of the Reds could find a taker who would give them a decent return, I’d trade him in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, that albatross of a contract is now untradeable. And the extension hasn’t even kicked in yet .

      • Greg Schiller

        I just don’t agree with the crowd that walks are as good as a hit. They just aren’t. The reds paid votto for 2010 votto not 1013-2014 votto. His contract is a disaster for the reds moving forward. It’s funny how does who attack Hamilton, who has been great, praise votto who has been garbage.

      • Dale Pearl

        Very true i agree with all of that. Walks seldom drive in runs. Yes they are good but i dont agree that they are as good as a hit either. The thing about Votto that gets me going is that he is a liability on base and his defense is terrible. So what if he has a good eye to walk. Maybe his future is in the american league where he would bat ninth and never play in the field

      • Steve Mancuso

        No one says that walks are as good as hits. Occasionally, they are the same. Walks may not be as good as hits, but they have positive value toward creating runs.

      • Steve Mancuso

        No one says a walk is as good as a hit. Occasionally they are. But all anyone really says is that walks add to run creation even if they don’t drive in runs.

  69. Dale Pearl

    Story of this game so far how two young studs are outperforming the guys that make the big bucks. Oh and secondarily it would appear that the entire redleg nation commenting crew obviously knows more about pitching than Price.

    Hopefully this game will lead to further middle relief changes and just maybe it is time to DL Bailey with a chummed up report of elbow soreness.

  70. pinson343

    LeCure has not pitched badly. A bloop single, then a fly ball that Bruce gives up on, he still should have gotten put of it with a DP ground ball right to Votto.

    • ProspectCincy

      You can justify the three runs he gave up all you want; he’s been terrible lately; giving up 3 runs consistently every other appearance.

      He’s throwing soft tosses up there …

  71. charlottencredsfan

    Mes-o-raco!!! 5 straight, baby.

  72. Kyle

    Not going to win but at least we all get to watch Devin crush another ball.

  73. sergeant2

    I guess some nights its just not meant to be, normally Votto makes that play. Even if we went to the 9th with the Cubs having a 2 run lead it would have been a tall order for the Reds to come back and win the game, but at least it was doable. Coming back from a 7-2 deficit ain’t what I would call doable. If the Reds can get out of Wrigley taking 2 outta 3 I will be a happy camper.

    • Vicferrari

      Had the go ahead run at the plate in the 8th, good come back attempt

  74. sergeant2

    369 ft. HR by Mesoraco. That’s what I call a little pain medication for tonight’s loss.

  75. sergeant2

    I know, I know, the Reds loss, but ya gotta give em credit for breaking through a pitcher throwing a perfect game, and being dominate while doing it. I expect the Reds will get a win tomorrow, taking the series before heading west to subject the San Francisco Giants to the Reds Surge. Go Reds! Adios Amigos.

    • Vicferrari

      Hate to be dramatic but a series loss to the Cubs would be devastating going into a brutal 4 game series in SF- especially all the strides they have made to get back to .500= need a gem from Latos who is due for his 1st win

      • sergeant2

        In Latos I trust. I don’t know, but I think “devastating” might be a bit much. Exasperating, or maybe disappointing might be the right words to describe losing the series to the Cubs, but devastating, I don’t know about that. It definitely wouldn’t be good that’s for sure.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Just like the loss to Toronto was devastating, until the next game anyhow.

  76. Brian Rutherford

    Hard to believe the comments. The team offense takes off when Votto comes back but he is should be traded? Seriously?

    I know this is the place to vent but the chances of this team making the playoffs without Votto in the line up are slim. He has been hitting great since returning and th team resonded. I don’t see him as some sacred cow that is above criticism either but the flack he takes here is laughable.

    • Dale Pearl

      Hes good we need him but he is far from perfect. He is a walking machine no doubt about that. And that is good.

  77. sergeant2

    One or two comments out of hundreds suggesting Votto should be traded, or time to blow the team up is not worthy of being taken seriously. Keep that in mind and it will do wonders for your blood pressure, I speak from experience. Go Reds!