Not a whole lot happened at the ol’ ballyard today, but it was hauntingly familiar to those of us that watched the 2014 vintage of Cincinnati Reds baseball. The Reds lost to Cubs 2 -1 if you want to review it (box).

Pitching: Cueto wasn’t his normal self because he struggled with his command, leading to multiple full counts and three walks. He pitched well overall, but one of his walks came right in front of the only hit he gave up (the only Cubs hit of the day), which happened to be a deep homerun cranked by ex-Red Chris Denorfia. The one run over four innings brought his spring ERA to an even 3.00. None of the other Reds pitchers are of particular interest to me (Gregg, Dennick, Contreras, Moscot), but they did well, giving up no runs, no hits, no walks, with four Ks.

“Offense”: Neither Joey Votto nor Jay Bruce was in the lineup, and the Reds offense scattered a few hits and no runs over the first eight innings. Devin Mesoraco had a hit and walk, which was the highlight. Hamilton was 0-fer in the leadoff spot, and Schumaker and Cozart followed suit from the bottom of the order. It was all eerily familiar. Cueto pitching well but unable to make a single mistake because of the punchless Reds offense.

Baserunning: This almost isn’t even worth mentioning since it’s just a random spring training game, but the icing on the cake came in the 9th inning. A single, a wild pitch, and a ground rule double had the Reds back in the game at 2 – 1, with a runner on second and one out. A single by Boesch would have made it first and third with one out, with a decent chance at tying the game, but the Reds sent the runner on a shallow bloop single and got him gunned at the plate. It all just added up to a day we’ve seen too many times before.

Hopefully Votto (who’s only played in 2 of the last 6 games) will be back soon, and the Reds can at least make their spring training losses not look so much like all of their losses from last season.

11 Responses

  1. preacherj

    Good pitching performance, no offense, runners getting thrown out at the plate, damage done by former Red, a one run loss…..all we missed was a bullpen meltdown.

  2. sezwhom

    Reds sent the runner on a shallow bloop single and got him gunned at the plate.

    The curse of Steve Smith.

    • jdx19

      On the broadcast, the Cubs’ announcer said “…and Riggleman waves him around third!” I got a sinking feeling in my stomach thinking about another season of Steve Smith-quality third base coaching.

      I propose a new stat… RASS14. Runs Above Steve Smith from 2014. I think we can calculate this!

  3. VaRedsFan

    “Votto (who’s only played in 2 of the last 6 games) ”
    Any additional news someone can share about this? I know it’s spring, but one day on 2 days off, doesn’t sound like a normal schedule if all was well.

  4. Woodrow068

    At the game – Mesoraco and Phillips both looked good all around, but Cueto eerily had all kinds of issues, especially ahead in the count. Maybe it gets chalked up to working on something particular in that situation from a Spring standpoint, especially as he seemed in good spirits running his sprints post-outing in the outfield (all the Reds pitchers did run the warning track during the game, save Kevin Gregg, unless I missed him.) Hamilton just didn’t get any good swings in. But his at-bats weren’t Javier-Baez-dumpster-fire-quality, either. In the field, Dominguez looks … like a pinch-hitter, and can’t imagine he’d have value to this squad as the roster is currently constructed.

    • Steve Mancuso

      Great to hear the first-hand accounts. Keep them coming if you see more games!

    • jdx19

      Javier Baez-dumspter-fire-quality! I love it!

      I was thinking as I watched the game at home “Why do the Cubs think this guy can be a good major leaguer?”

      I mean, anyone can hit with crazy power if they come out of their shoes every swing like Baez. Not too impressive, I think. Bryant and Soler, however, are the real deal, I think.

  5. Tom Reed

    Deja Vu? Three weeks until the count starts.

  6. vegastypo

    I commented last night about that play at the plate. The wiser course would have been to hold the runner with one out, yes, agreed, especially when the right-fielder was able to get momentum behind the throw. (Although last year taught me not to necessarily get my hopes when this team has runners in scoring position with less than two out, either.) But if the throw yesterday hadn’t been directly on line, the guy scores.

    I just hope that Price isn’t so gung-ho about this “aggressiveness” push that we keep losing too many runners on the bases. Not everybody was built to steal bases.