The Reds look for another series victory tonight if they can defeat the Cleveland Indians in the “series” finale. I guess it all depends on whether or not you count this as a 4-game series or separate 2-game series. If you look at it as the latter, then the Reds look to break out the brooms and sweep the Indians following a split in Cleveland.

The juggernaut that is the Reds offense has risen to the occasion the last two games and can not be stopped! Oh yeah, and Homer Bailey takes to the mound with his now solid 3.89 ERA. Let’s see if the Reds can continue closing that gap between themselves and first place in the division.

Discuss the ball game here! Come on you Redlegs!

1. Hamilton CF
2. Bruce RF
3. Frazier 1B
4. Mesoraco C
5. Ludwick LF
6. Negron 2B
7. Santiago 3B
8. Cozart SS
9. Bailey P

173 Responses

  1. Kurt Frost

    Is Gritty Gritman hurt or did Price figure out gritty is code for sucks?

    • pinson343

      Schu has been outplayed by Negron, Ludwick, Santiago, and Heisey, so he’s where he belongs, on the bench.

  2. George Mirones

    Tonight’s starter, T. J. House, for Cleveland is a left hander who has velocity traits similar to the Reds Mike Leake
    Source 2014 Fangraphs
    Splits versus RH/LH batters
    LH Batter
    K/9 7.91, BB/9 1.40, HR/9 0.93, WHIP 1.19, BABIP .305, xFIP 2.30
    RH Batter
    K/9 5.55, BB/9 3.28, HR/9 1.26, WHIP 1.68, BABIP .353, xFIP 4.17
    Pitch types, % and velocity
    FA 11.3%/91.5
    FT 45.5%/90.6
    FS 0.1%/83.9
    SL 24%/83.6
    CU 1.8%/75.8
    CH 16.8%/81.8
    Based on these splits and pitch quality I would start Ludwick in LF and Heisey in RF and sit Bruce.
    I would keep the infield and catcher the same as last night.
    Jay Bruce 2014 Splits
    VS LH- AB 84, H 15, RBI 14, SO 28, BB 5, AVG .179, HR 6, BABIP .176
    VS RH- AB 254, H 60, RBI 31, SO 76. BB 34, AVG .236, HR 5, BABIP .314

    • Kevin J. Brown (@ZebtheRed)

      Sit Bruce when he is starting to hit and play a guy who can’t hit at all when he starts and has a notable reverse platoon differential?

      Crazy. I really don’t get the extreme Heisey love people on this blog have.

      Pena needs some days off too and Santiago hit a 3 run HR last time he started. This is a good lineup by Price.

      • George Mirones

        “Extreme Heisey love” That’s a stretch. He is a right hand hitter against a soft tossing left hander.

      • pinson343

        I agree. Also Pena does not hit as well against LHed pitchers. This is the best lineup against lefties since BP went down.

      • George Mirones

        As always on this blog everybody deserves their opinion. 🙂

      • pinson343

        Sure, no problem, but I do like this lineup.

  3. zippy

    Grande’s obsession with the word “looper” has reached a point where I think he needs professional help.

  4. pinson343

    Havoc. With Hamilton on base plus the shift on, no wonder the IFers are confused.

  5. hof13

    Is this going to be another – runner on 3rd with no outs that doesn’t score?

  6. pinson343

    Good job by Ludwick. With runner on 3rd and none out, not getting that run in would have been deflating.

    • Vicferrari

      And Ludwick inflates that lead to 2 runs, here’s to a solid outing by Bailey that will make those runs stand up

  7. pinson343

    So far, seems to be the Reds night again.

  8. zippy

    Baseball’s such a weird game. Indians are the team hitting the ball hard, Reds are the team with two runs.

  9. hof13

    Homer is getting kinda lucky. Some balls have been hit hard but the Reds have made plays on them. Things are evening out from the beginning of the season.

  10. BigRedSaguaro

    I love Billy, but slow down sometimes lol

  11. pinson343

    Homer needs to get a breather now.

  12. Mark Moore

    Bit of a TOOTBLAN … and I think the guys in the booth were right. Had he poured on the gas, he’d have beat the throw home and scored.

  13. hof13

    Why did Hamilton stop running …. once he committed – just keep going. Course he shoudlnt have committed in the first place but … just keep going.

    • msanmoore

      Smith did try to stop him … his turn was too big and they threw behind him.

      • zippy

        He also slipped a bit. But I think he was going to be out regardless. For once Smith is doing the right thing and the runner ignores him.

      • pinson343

        Right. Smith finally tries to stop someone, and it backfires.

    • Kevin J. Brown (@ZebtheRed)

      Smith finally did one right and held him, but Billy went too far around 3B. Still a run is a run; Swisher probably should have gotten an error on that play (my scoring: 2B, E7, no RBI).

      • pinson343

        The Indians defense is really awful. I’ve haven’t seen a NL team this bad.

  14. George Mirones

    Looks like the Indians not sure of what to do. House not fooling anybody.

    • Vicferrari

      Bullpen is not exactly fresh, but I am all for keeping IN THE HOUSE

  15. zippy

    Classic Reds. They have a good amount of talent, but aren’t quite sure how to use it.

  16. George Mirones

    Good start to 3rd inning by Homer.

  17. pinson343

    That was a flat out baserunnng mistake by Hamilton, he rounded 3rd too far. Don’t know why George thinks it’s so funny.

    • zippy

      George could be on a plane falling out of the sky and he’d be saying “on the bright side, now we won’t have to worry about making our connection in Denver.” (Also, he’d say the plane is “looping toward earth.”)

  18. George Mirones

    Finish the inning with this batter.

  19. msanmoore

    95 gas right down Broadway. Homer wanted his breather and he wanted it NOW!

  20. pinson343

    They’re hitting some line drives, but Homer’s fastball looks live and his splitter is nasty tonight.

  21. George Mirones

    The Reds need to put House away and get to the bullpen

  22. MesosBat

    Regarding Billy’s out… It looked like Smith did not put the stop sign up until Billy was already around 3rd by a step or so… It’s hard to stop the Hamiltrain

    • Shchi Cossack

      That stop sign used by Smith was lame and late at the very best. A good lesson in physics and inertia might be useful for Smith if he continues to coach 3B with Hamilton running at full speed. Such a casual stop signal as Hamilton touches 3B and running at full speed with the intent to go home is a recipe for disaster, and of course that’s what happened when Hamilton tried to stop from a full run without any advanced warning.

      • Thegaffer

        Please dont tell me Smith is worth defending, he is simply unacceptably bad at his one simple job.

      • MesosBat

        I agree … Thanks for confirming my thought on the matter.

      • Kevin J. Brown (@ZebtheRed)

        He might be bad at his job but he did it correctly there. You have to coach the runner on 1st first and then worry about the batter/runner. In those situations, it is mostly up to the batter/runner to decide whether to try for the inside the park HR. Billy overran the base which is not the coach’s fault no matter how many other mistakes Smith has made.

  23. George Mirones

    Homer looks like he is getting it done . could be a long night for Cleveland

  24. hof13

    The Reds should have Homer sprint around the bases before every game. He’s been dealing ever since.

  25. earmbrister

    Lord, is there any AL player I can’t stand more than Swisher? Love the .208 BA

  26. earmbrister

    Yeah, I hate on the NYY, but … any player who campaigns to make the All Star game is forever lame in my book.

  27. pinson343

    Homer was not phased by that. When Frazier couldn’t handle his throw, he winced and gestured what the hell with his hands.

  28. BigRedSaguaro

    Arghh the Indians need to buy some gloves

  29. pinson343

    Too bad. Hamilton had 2nd stolen easily on strike 1 to Bruce, which he fouled off.

    • Kevin J. Brown (@ZebtheRed)

      Bruce is batting 2nd so he gets more fastballs to hit, but I think it hurts Billy’s SB chances. Jay normally isn’t going to take a pitch down the middle if he can help it which a good #2 hitter is supposed to do.

      • pinson343

        Right. Bruce won’t be batting second when BP returns. Probably Frazier will be.

  30. Kyle

    What an odd game for Hamilton. He has ripped one ball, got another hit, created some havoc on the bases that played a part in an error, but then has also made two really bad base running mistakes.

    I’ll chalk it up as a net positive.

  31. hof13

    That whole sequence for Hamilton wasn’t good – from AB to out .

  32. zippy

    This team really seems to want to make things as hard as humanly possible. Hamilton refuses to take a borderline 3-1 pitch (first mistake), but he’s awarded first base as a gift. He wasn’t running hard (second mistake) or he’d probably have been on second. Then he has stolen easily but Bruce refuses to take the pitch (third mistake). Then Hamilton gets himself picked off (fourth mistake). I think this team could be really good if they ever committed to playing fundamentally smart baseball, but apparently that’s too much to ask.

      • zippy

        Because he normally gets a hit when he swings?

      • earmbrister

        ok, that was almost as funny as this tidbit:

        George could be on a plane falling out of the sky and he’d be saying “on the bright side, now we won’t have to worry about making our connection in Denver.” (Also, he’d say the plane is “looping toward earth.”)

        Keep on keeping on

      • preacherj

        Yeah, ‘looping toward earth’ made me laugh.

      • Kurt Frost

        You’re wrong on this one zippy.

  33. preacherj

    Negron 7 for his last 12. Not too shabby.

  34. yorktownred

    Really like Negron. Too bad he languished in the minors over half the season.

    • Vicferrari

      c’mon dude is playing out of his head right now, remember when Cozart first came up, I seriously doubt Negron can be the player Cozart is, but I sure am enjoying the hot streal…to 2nd guess his usage just is off base

    • pinson343

      Todd was almost thrown out trying to steal, but nonetheless he’s a smarter base runner than Hamilton.

  35. pinson343

    Nice job by Negron. An add-on run was overdue.

  36. hof13

    I said it the other night, will say it again. I’ve been impressed with Negron.

  37. George Mirones

    Looks like Homer wants the inside of the plate

  38. Ed Lambert

    If Negron keeps hitting they will keep in the lineup, won’t they? Even when BP comes back they have to keep playing them? Maybe not 2B but somewhere?

    • George Mirones

      If they wait till September 1 to bring back BP Negron will stay with the team.

      • Kevin J. Brown

        Pretty sure BP will be back before September 1.

    • hof13

      I doubt it. I just hope it keeps the Reds from activating BP before he is ready. If Negron can keep hitting, and playing the defense he has, they don’t have to rush BP back.

    • pinson343

      Negron can play 3rd base, so they wouldn’t necessarily have to sit him.

      • pinson343

        Probably could, but he’s billed as a 2nd, SS, 3rd base guy.

  39. pinson343

    Jumbo warming up in case the “extra ball on the field” play is needed.

  40. Ed Lambert

    I’m thinking they have to DFA Hanahan to keep Negron and at least let him play LF or 3B when Frazier plays 1B.

    • George Mirones

      Not if they wait till 9/1 to activate BP

  41. pinson343

    Really impressed by Bailey, dealing with all those LHed hitters.

    • msanmoore

      He has looked good. Movement was down right filthy at times.

  42. George Mirones

    Homer has not put himself onto “critical high leverage” situations. Good Job.

  43. msanmoore

    And a Zack Attack on top of it all. Let’s see Homer drive him in … NUTS! They’ll PH for him.

  44. BigRedSaguaro

    Brantley must hate being in the outfield with Swisher

    • George Mirones

      Could Swisher be as fast as Ludwick? (tic)

  45. Ed Lambert

    Man the Indians outfielders are slow. Who is this number 2 player for the Reds? I don’t recognize him?

    • pinson343

      On Cozart’s triple, it looked like they were just jugging.

    • Kevin J. Brown

      Heisey is our best PH and why use the only other catcher?

      • George Mirones

        Your right I thought about that the minute I hit “Post”

  46. George Mirones

    Here is where Bruce needs to be, let’s see

  47. BigRedSaguaro

    Runner stranded on 3 rd, oh well at least we are ahead tonite

  48. BigRedSaguaro

    But those were some bad AB’s

    • pinson343

      The best AB of those was Hamilton’s. Heisey was impatient, Bruce looked overmatched.

    • George Mirones

      That’s what we saw coming out of the All-Star break and we know what that got the Reds.

  49. Kevin J. Brown

    Little easier to take tha inning when we’re up 4-0 rather than down 2-1.

  50. sergeant2

    Reds winning 4-0 heading to top of 8th. I ain’t complaining about nuttin’ Go Reds!

  51. pinson343

    Runner on 3rd, nobody out, and they’re not even close to getting him in. Heisey grounds out on the first pitch, he couldn’t wait a bit, maybe for something he could hit in the air ?

  52. zippy

    So let me get this straight…. one of the few times in the last month Billy Hamilton is willing to take a borderline pitch is when he has two strikes and a runner on third? I mean, seriously, does anyone teach baseball players ANYTHING about the mental side of the game? To put it nicely: I’ve never seen a team more committed to doing the opposite of what a smart team would do.

    • Kevin J. Brown

      To be fair, that was an awfully nasty pitch on 3-2; a breaking ball right on the outside corner.

      • zippy

        Yes, but to be even fairer, the rule of thumb is that you swing at anything close (not just fastballs or pitches down the middle) when you’ve got two strikes, especially when there’s a runner on third and one out. That’s Baseball 101.

    • pinson343

      Hamilton was struck out on a backdoor curve ball, a perfect pitch, looked like a ball until the last instant. That was one of his better recent ABs, in terms of taking vs. swinging.

      • zippy

        Yes, it was a very good pitch. But a smart major league hitter doesn’t say “well, it was a good pitch, so nothing I could do with it.” A smart major leaguer realizes he’s got to swing at anything that COULD be a strike, even if he’s fooled by it. If he can’t put it in play, he needs to foul it off. But the very worst possible thing to do is to take strike three. ANY contact whatsoever gave him a chance to plate a run. That is one of the few times when it makes sense to swing at a bad pitch, which Hamilton is usually very willing to do when it does NOT make sense. It’s 100% backwards.

      • Grand Salami

        His error slash pick off was awful. Up 3-0 and popping out. Then he tries to cheat on the throw.

        He cheats all the time and he is probably the one guy who never has to!

    • George Mirones

      It is hard to explain but to keep it short IMO when players get paid (cash, adulation, praise) by individual performance and not team performance it becomes “all about me” so situational awareness goes out the window. Many players think if it is good for me then it must be good for the team so what I do must be right.

      • Kevin J. Brown

        I’d like to see Billy take occasionally on 3-1; he always seems to hack on that count.

      • zippy

        YES! I think that’s a HUGE part of the problem. Teams reward individual stats much more than contributions to team wins. If a guy hits 30 HRs and drives in 100, the team stupidly ignores the fact that he doesn’t understand situational hitting and costs the team several runs by swinging for the fences all the time.

      • RedPegLeg

        if a guy hits 30 HRs and 100 RBIs he probably helped his team win quite a bit already

      • zippy

        Yes, but not nearly as much as the guy who hits 20 HRs, drives in 85, but also knows how to take a walk, move a runner from second to third, take a pitch to let a guy steal a base, force the opposing pitcher to throw a lot of pitches, run the bases well, etc. But teams are far more likely to offer the big contract to the guy who hits 30 HR than the little guy who forces the pitcher to throw a bunch of extra pitches (tiring the pitcher out so others can hit him better) and drawing walks that force opposing pitchers to throw strikes to the slugger. It’s far more of a team game than people seem to realize.

    • pinson343

      What do you have to say about the Indians play tonight ?

      • BigRedSaguaro

        Amazing they still get to be in the bigs, nasty defense

      • George Mirones

        The Indians are the Reds without the defense or pitching.

  53. Kevin J. Brown

    Not a save situation but I think I’d use Chapman who hasn’t pitched at all in this series. But I didn’t see him warming up.

  54. George Mirones

    Showing Broxton off to somebody in need of a closer.

  55. hof13

    Indians with 3 errors and at least 3 plays in the field that weren’t caused errors but allowed the Reds an extra base. They are the worst fielding team I’ve seen this year.

    • pinson343

      I saw all of games 2 thru 4. Definitely the worst defense I’ve seen this year, and I can’t recall much worse without going all the way back to the 1962 Mets, one of the worst teams in history.

  56. BigRedSaguaro

    Jennings from the Marlins got hit in the head by a liner tonite, hope he ok

  57. sergeant2

    Marty seems to enjoy mocking the peasants for getting excited about getting free pizza.

    • BigRedSaguaro

      As he looks down from his throne

      • BigRedSaguaro

        And yells “let them eat cake!” errr pizza”

      • George Mirones

        It is good to be the king. 🙂

      • Kurt Frost

        He’s such an exaggerated phallus.

      • BigRedSaguaro

        worked some deep history into this post

      • Grand Salami

        It’s bc Marty and Buddy went to grade school together in 1887 and he gets all the free pizza his little gullet desires.

        Ps I still love Marty.

  58. pinson343

    Great game by Homer and Parra and Broxton looking good. This is a very good pitching staff.

  59. sergeant2

    Johnathan “Big Sequoia” Broxton slams the door shut for the win. Good game, good win for the Reds. Gotta keep it going. Go Reds! Adios Amigos.

    • Grand Salami

      I still wonder is Walt didn’t force a Broxton trade bc he is a better waivers trade commodity with that contract to unload and the increasingly desperate need for set men and closers in August and Sept.

      • George Mirones

        No question in my mind. Walt is laying in the weeds for some team to be unfortunate enough to call about a closer.

  60. yorktownred

    We can all rest easy for another year… the Ohio Cup has been secured.

  61. Kevin J. Brown

    Pirates seem to have a safe lead but the Cards are only up 3-2 in the 4th. Go Red Sox!

    At worse, we’ll be 3 GB behind both WC teams and 4 back of the Brewers. 47 games to go!

    • Grand Salami

      Keep winning and the rest takes care of itself

  62. Tom Reed

    It’s amazing what great pitching combined with some emotion from the manager to call out players who are not hustling can do. I’ll take the Lou Pinella school of management any day.

    • BigRedSaguaro

      Lou could get a little excited