The Reds won two out of three this series and stand at 14-14 overall. They’ve beaten the Pirates 5 out of 6 games. These are the Pirates (13-15) that experts in the preseason said would leave the Reds in the dust. Accomplishing all that they have without Devin Mesoraco and Homer Bailey is commendable. The team’s glaring weak spot reared up in the form of Kevin Gregg tonight to smite the Reds chances of coming back to win. Someday, managers will realize that it’s more important to use good pitchers when the team is behind by one run than when they are ahead by three or four. Regrettably, that day is not today. You can’t win ’em all.

Pirates 7, Reds 2 | Fay | Sheldon

J.J. Hoover pitched a clean inning.

Marlon Byrd had two hits and a walk (!). He’s hitting .221/.257/.432 and Byrd’s wRC+ is 86. Todd Frazier had two hits, including his tenth home run of the year. He leads the NL in homers. Kris Negron and Brayan Peña had two hits apiece.

That’s about it for the good stuff.

Anthony DeSclafani struggled with his control again. He walked 4 and struck out 1 in 5 innings. It’s his second poor start in a row, after four good ones. Jeff Brantley seemed to pick up on a problem with his delivery, rushing through the equilibrium point, so hopefully the coaching staff can straighten him out. It’s unreasonable to expect DeSclafani to be more than a #5 pitcher, despite his excellent start.

Kevin Gregg was a disaster coming out of the bullpen. His ERA is back in double digits and his FIP is 5.57. He’s made 11 appearances and given up more than one run in four of them. Anyone who expected anything other than this outcome from him can’t read a player page at FanGraphs. At this point it’s hard to know what is more remarkable, that Kevin Gregg still has a role in close games or that he still has a roster spot. And how much longer will Reds fans have to put up with the inept and stubborn decision making that results in him on the mound with a game on the line?

The Reds outfield arms were particularly suspect tonight. Billy Hamilton and Marlon Byrd combined for three Little League throws to home plate (that may be unfair to Little Leaguers). Two of them didn’t reach the pitchers mound. All three of them would have resulted in outs with good throws. On another occasion, Byrd threw to the wrong base on a fly out. The Pirates showed no respect for two-thirds of the Reds outfield.

With the Reds just a run behind in the top of the 7th, Bryan Price sent Skip Schumaker to the plate to pinch hit for the pitcher. Kris Negron was on third base. Schumaker struck out on three pitches. He’s hitting .160/.192/.200. Despite hardly playing, he has amassed a fWAR of -.4 to go with his -1.2 fWAR last year. Quite a signing there.Saw somewhere in the Twitterverse tonight where it was suggested that the Reds might have been better off if Price had sent Schumaker to pitch and Gregg out to pinch hit. Our own Wes Jenkins tweeted this:

See, that’s not quite right, unless the bag opened up and the balls rolled onto the field tripping up Reds players at important parts of the game. But I think Wes has the sentiment nailed. (And by the way, a shout out to the tremendous job Greg Dafler and Wes are doing on our new and improved Game Threads!)

Interesting choice by Price to pinch hit, with Devin Mesoraco on the bench. We know Mesoraco was available because Price sent him up to hit with two outs in the bottom of the ninth down by five runs. I’m going out on a limb and stating that Devin Mesoraco is a better hitter even against right-handed pitchers than Skip Schumaker. Price playing lefty-on-righty match-up in the seventh with Schumaker over Mesoraco is simply mind-boggling.

Up next: The Reds head to the South Side tomorrow for a three game series against the White Sox. They lost tonight and are 10-15.

135 Responses

  1. ohiojimw

    What happened to that Reds manager that played for the sweep (and got it) the first weekend of the season. He’s had by my count 3 chances since and ran from the opportunity each time.

  2. D Ray White

    Watching Keving Gregg “pitch” causes me to pine for the return of Logan Ondrusek. That’s how bad Gregg is. Maybe Eric Milton is ready to come out of retirement?

    • Aaron Bradley

      that’s why I never minded Ondrusek… my friend who is a Cardinals fan used to be scared of the guy when he came into the game when we watched and I laughed to myself but never revealed how reds fans don’t have faith for him. He is intimidating! yes I wish we had him instead of Gregg x 10! Next time you hate on a guy remember it can be worse!

    • RedAlert

      Or maybe just MILTON period – tonight would maybe have been appropriate for those braces to appear in the recap

      • Steve Mancuso

        That’s sort of Chad’s move. But you’re right.

    • lwblogger2

      Said early on that I’d take Ondrusek or especially LaCure over Gregg. Price keeps talking about how LaCure needs to get his fastball command back but I fail to see how he could be worse than Gregg has been. Price knows pitching. It makes me wonder what in the heck he’s seeing in Gregg that he keeps running him out there? It’s gotta be something.

      • redmountain

        I love LeCure, but if you look at his stats in AAA he is not getting guys out.

      • lwblogger2

        I just looked. Yeah, he’s struggling. Better than Gregg though? 7 walks in 12-1/3 IP isn’t inspiring, that’s for sure.

      • Bill Lack

        I don’t think it has to be an either or decision…

  3. ohiojimw

    Price will say what he will say; but my guess would be the pitching choice tonight was driven by the fact that Chapman wasn’t available and thus Cingrani was the closer de jour and Jumbo the 8th inning man.

    Wonder what the manager would have done if the Reds would have inconveniently tied the game there in the 7th? Badenhoft?

  4. ohiojimw

    It looked to me like they were going to bring Meso for Negrón in the 7th if Bruce extended the inning. Why Meso for Bruce since the Pirates had the lefty in there to face Bruce?

    • ohiojimw

      Make that the 8th when Bruce 8th when Bruce struck out versus Watson to end the inning.

  5. PARED84

    Steve you know very well Price has nothing to work with.Schumacher/ Gregg/ Badenhop/Negron Should not be on team. Throw in no Bailey/ Mesoraco/ Marshall/ Parra and options are few and far between. Plus we fans have the advantage of knowing what happens after the fact to say what moves should have been made.
    This is on Walt and scouts for not being able to find useful bench and bullpen help.Maybe Big Bob and money is also part of it.

    • lwblogger2

      I’m not upset with the budget. The issue is it was spent poorly. I’m not even talking about the big, big contracts. It’s paying guys almost $6-million to go away that’s killing them. There’s the money for your bench and maybe pen right there.

    • jessecuster44

      Maybe stop pitching Kevin Gregg, except in blowout losses. I think any manager could do this.

    • Jeremy Conley

      I’m sorry, it’s just not hindsight. Every time Kevin Gregg has been called in I have said “this is not going to go well,” and I’ve been right almost every time. It’s not hindsight, it’s foresight. It’s being able to see a players stats and use your eyeballs and see that he stinks. He’s old and bad now, and he was young and bad then.

      He never should have been signed, never should have been given a roster spot, and never should have been put into a game. Those decisions are on everyone in the organization.

      • jdx19

        Precisely. Anyone can go look at Kevin Gregg’s past performance and conclude there is little to no chance he’ll ever be a decent major league pitcher. The evidence suggests that he will, in fact, be a below-replacement level major league pitcher. It’s just tough to watch BP manage nowadays.

    • Redsfan48

      I was with you till I saw “Negron” on your list of players that shouldn’t be here. Then you lost me. Explanation please? Negron performed very well last season in limited time, and he’s far better than any of the other backup shortstops (see Valdez, Renteria, Izturis, Santiago) we have had in recent memory. Negron also hustles on every play (and has some speed to work with) and brings some energy to this team. Sorry, but name me one current player in the Reds farm system or out there on the waiver/free agent wire that would be a better backup infielder than Negron (and remember that they at least would have to cover 2nd base, shortstop, and third).

  6. RedAlert

    Reds are lucky to be at .500 the way Price has mismanaged this team – has shown nothing to indicate that he has improved his managerial skills from last year – just bizarre decisions during the course of a game – almost like he manages “backwards” – Reds ain’t going anywhere as long as this guy and his compadre Jocketty are in charge

    • RedAlert

      And big Bob is at the root of the problem for keeping Uncle Walt in the fold

      • lwblogger2

        Can’t argue with you there. After last year, I was stunned that WJ was signed to a new deal.

      • Jay King

        I live in Wisconsin and they fired their manager who had winning seasons in the past. Poor guy Reinike (sp) … Doug Melvin should have gone instead their owner in the papers was quoted as saying how many years do you wanna stay GM.

  7. jdx19

    Of the 8 worst qualified relievers by FIP in the NL, the Reds have 2 (Gregg, Diaz). The Brewers and D-Backs also have 2. Badenhop is not qualified with 8 IP, and his FIP is worse than both Gregg and Diaz.

    A sad state of affairs.

    • Redsfan48

      You fail to realize that Diaz’s FIP and ERA are only high because of 1 or 2 bad outings. He’s been money in the other appearances. His ERA will not remain that high, he just needs a larger sample size. As far as Badenhop and Gregg, I have zero faith that they will turn it around so I agree about them.

      • jdx19

        I didn’t fail to realize anything. I simply stated a statistical fact.

  8. Michael E

    Is there any reason 3 relievers and Schumaker can’t be released and any random AAA and AA player chosen to replace each of them? I seriously doubt more than 1 or 2 players would fair WORSE at the MLB level than these guys.

    Would someone please wake up Walt and jab him with a cattle prod? How dim and unconscious does a GM need to be to NOT act upon basic observations?

    • redmountain

      There is a money angle in releasing guys, though I agree that it might be a good thing to do. I am not sure that there are three relievers in the minors who could be brought up and be effective. Schumaker on the other hand……

      • Bill Lack

        I didn’t see much of last night’s game, but did see the Schumaker AB. It was horrible. Needing, at the least, a fly ball, he hacked the first 3 pitches he received, none of which were in the strike zone and the final two he couldn’t have elevated with a lift.

      • jdx19

        All of their contracts are sunk costs at this point. When they can be replaced by a guy making league-minimum, it’s not a huge outlay of additional funds. That, coupled with the fact that guys like Gregg and Skip are negative-WAR players means the only logical move is to ignore the money and release them.

    • Redsfan48

      I only see 2 bad relievers (Gregg and Badenhop). Who is your third? I might be missing someone (please read above if your 3rd is Diaz, Jumbo)

  9. Vanessa Galagnara

    Give a rookie a chance instead of running a player out there that you know will fail.

  10. CBD

    I will never understand the mentality of bull pen roles.

    It’s like putting your entire paycheck into a retirement account that you can’t touch until 70 when you’re 30 need the money to live now! What sense does that make?

    I have to wonder though, had Price utilized Mesoraco (or Skip came through to tie the game) do we still see Gregg with a 3-3 ball game? The options Price has in the bull pen when the starting pitching only goes 5 innings is pretty underwhelming. This is been a glaring weakness for 28 games with nary a peep from the front office.

    • DHud

      Why even bother sending him to AAA? He would just take up a roster spot there. Outright release him.

      • Steve Mancuso

        It’s not like he’s going to get better. He’s 36.

  11. Paul

    The bad news is Gregg continues to fail.

    The good news (?) is it had no bearing on this game. If Gregg was lights-out the Reds still lose 3-2.

    I got the feeling when we saw Hoover and Gregg back to back that Price was basically ceding this game, happy to just take the series.

    • greenmtred

      They lose 3-2 if they don’t score any more runs, yes. Change one part of history and other parts are subject to change as well. In this case, the often-derided but still real intangibles might (mind you, might) have been enough to waken the somnolent bats.

    • jessecuster44

      I completely disagree with the logic of this staement. Your mindset, down 2-3, may be markedly different than if you are down 2-7.

  12. spro

    Both Diaz and Gregg were warming up in the Top of the 8th. Price said postgame that Jumbo would’ve been in if we were tied or ahead, Gregg if behind. The Jumbo-Cingrani 8-9 combo if we had the lead or tied was the right thinking. We just have no one else down there. Should’ve really gone with Jumbo in the 8th no matter what the score.

    • wkuchad

      “Price said postgame that Jumbo would’ve been in if we were tied or ahead, Gregg if behind.”

      Does this make any sense? If “warming up” takes it toll on relievers similar to actually coming in the game, why have two righties going in this situation? Seems like bad bullpen management.

      Or course, bringing in Greg in a one-run game is also bad bullpen management.

  13. doublenohitter

    Quoting Brian Price –
    “I think Kevin puts everything he’s got into every single outing. He’s unbelievably professional in how he goes about his business,” Price said. “It’s been a rough start for him, no doubt. It’s why I thought tonight’s game was another opportunity in a close one-run game to get him in there and get him on a roll.”

    Heck, give me the ball and I’ll give you everything I got and be unbelievably professional. I’d suck and have and ERA upwards of infinity, but I would qualify for a bullpen roll based on his assessment.

    How ignorant is Bryan Price?

    • RedInInd

      Also known as, “We’ve got to get him going.”

      • RedInInd

        Didn’t read down far enough. You got it, Ted!

    • greenmtred

      As others have noted, Price can only use who he has. I wish Gregg weren’t on the team, but he is, and Price has few options. He didn’t sign him. And, yes, Gregg still might “get going” and be serviceable. We’re an impatient bunch–we were calling for Byrd’s head on a pike, but now he has started to hit. Not saying the same will happen with Gregg (he almost certainly won’t hit), but you never know.

      • Eric the Red

        He could have used Gregg in the 6th to face 8,9,1 and then Hoover in the 7th to face 2,3,4 instead of the other way around. He could have used Hoover, then Jumbo, then Cingrani to finish it out instead of holding Cingrani back for a save or so he could maybe pitch Friday or for whatever reason he wasn’t used. He could have left Disco in to pitch to 8,9,1 and then Hoover in the 7th.

        In other words, even with an awful bullpen–terrifyingly, Gregg is apparently not the worst guy out there in Price’s eyes so long as Badenhop is on the team–Price had plenty of options. With a chance to step on the neck of a team that is probably our key rival for a playoff spot, choosing to use the bullpen the way Price did is malpractice. And I’ve been a staunch Price supporter.

    • RedAlert

      Not very intelligent for a supposedly smart guy – simply not a good manager – can’t hide that fact

    • docmike

      That is a scary quote from Bryan Price. Using a guy that’s struggling in a pressure situation (and yes, a 1-run game in the 7th inning qualifies) is lunacy.

      If you want to “get him on a roll”, use him in low-leverage situations, in games that are blowouts in either direction. That way he gets a chance to work out the kinks, but if he is terrible again, he doesn’t cost us the game.

    • Bill Lack

      The more Price talks, the less I believe in him and the more I realize how wrong I was when I was excited about him getting the job. It’s not about who he has, but about the decision making process he seems to use. I’ll say again, he’s gone between the AS break and August 1.

      • Jeremy Conley

        100% agree. It’s terribly disappointing that we somehow went with a young guy who had never managed and questioned the old ways in his opening press conference, but then turned into Dusty 2.0.

      • wkuchad

        These comparisons to Dusty are ridiculous. Dusty was frustrating at times, but he won. He won over 52% of his games for the Reds, and that’s with taking over a pretty bad team. He won 90 games 3 out of last 4 years here. He won 86 games or more 9 times with the Cubs and Giants. Has Price done ANYTHING to make you think he will have success like that?

      • lwblogger2

        I’d argue he isn’t the manager that Dusty was. At least pre-stroke Dusty.

      • docmike

        Dusty had a much more talented roster than Price has had to work with. I give Dusty very little credit for the club’s successes from 2010-2013.

      • greenmtred

        If you choose not to give Dusty credit for his team’s success, you can hardly blame Price for his team’s failures. It would be difficult for a casual reader dropping in to this site to know that this wretched team is actually playing .500 ball. Perhaps Price will be fired this season, but if the Reds continue to play at something like their current pace, they will closely match what most of us expected them to do. I wouldn’t expect a new manager to make much difference. A few new players probably would.

  14. Eric the Red

    Here’s what I don’t get. I thought the decision to pull Disco was questionable. But having made that decision, you as a manager know you have to cover innings 6-9 with a terrible bullpen. In the 6th, the Pirates had 8, 9, 1 coming up. Why do you use Hoover for that, and Gregg for 2,3,4 instead of the other way around? Hoover may have had his shaky moments, but he’s been infinitely better than Gregg.

    Also, Price keeps saying he doesn’t really believe in left-right matchups with his relief pitchers. Yet when selecting pinch hitters, that’s his most important criterion. How exactly does that make sense?

    • lwblogger2

      I’ve thought the same thing about his use of platoon splits in his decision making. He ignores them for the most part for pitchers but then uses them religiously when selecting pinch hitters. It doesn’t make sense to me.

      • lwblogger2

        Not like he’s been over used. He probably could have gone 2.

      • Eric the Red

        I’m not sure I’d get into that habit. Last year, a lot of Hoover’s troubles came in the 2nd inning he pitched.

  15. ManuelT

    Good article. How long will it take to get rid of Gregg and Skip?

    • CTRedsFan

      Until the offseason probably, sad as it may be.

  16. VaRedsFan

    Billy’s throw in the 1st was indeed bad. But from what I’ve witnessed, his arm is above average, and normally good. Bruce has the reputation of a great arm, but he is off with just as many throws as Billy.

    • lwblogger2

      Disagree about Hamilton’s arm. His arm is adequate. Usually he throws to the right spot and he also gets rid of the ball quickly, which helps him. It is certainly not an above average arm though.

      This is where the eye test is interesting. We both are watching the same player make the same throws and we both have very different conclusions.

  17. lwblogger2

    Now Led Zeppelin’s “How Many More Times” is playing in my head.

  18. Eric the Red

    For a guy who is supposed to be all about doing the little things the right way, Skip seems to fail a lot at moving the runner over, putting the ball in play to score the tying run, etc. His AB against Burnett was just pathetic. Since he’s not any good at doing the big things, it would be nice if we could at least count on him to do the little things.

    • wkuchad

      Makes no sense that Devin wasn’t used in that situation.

    • Redgoggles

      Give him credit for keeping his batting gloves adjusted though.

    • jdx19

      Saying a guy is good at the little things is a nice, PC way that baseball has developed to say “this guy can’t hit.”

      Same as calling a guy a “good fastball hitter.” That means he can’t hit breaking pitches and off-speed stuff.

      • docmike

        Heh, I think all MLB players are “good fastball hitters”.

      • lwblogger2

        And “good fastball hitter” describes every single MLB player who isn’t old or injured, so still has bat speed. All these guys can hit fastballs or they wouldn’t be there!

      • Hotto4Votto

        It’s like saying “she has a nice personality “.

      • tct

        There is also a racial component to the “gritty” narrative. You rarely hear a black player described as tough and gritty. I’ve never heard an Asian player described that way, and Latinos are only gritty if they are diminutive middle infielders. It’s almost always sucky white guys who are “gritty” and “tough guys who do the little things”.

      • jdx19

        I thought the “grit” narrative carried at this site was a jab at something Walt had said in the past. I could be wrong about that, but that was my impression.

      • jdx19

        And, also, there have been something like 30-40 Asian players in the bigs? Also, they are all the very best of their leagues in Japan or Korea, so I’d expect there to be no talk of “grit” because most of them can play ball, as evidenced by their trip across the pond.

  19. IndyRedMan

    Yeah I thought the shell of Jim Edmonds in a Reds uniform was bad enough but the shell of Schumaker is a new and insidious form of torture…..and Jay Bruce….wow….he is pulling off the impossible. I actually feel sorry for a guy making 10 mil/year or whatever it is?

    • jdx19

      Pulling off the impossible? Stop with the hyperbole already, dude, regarding Jay Bruce. He’s not even one of the 5 worst hitters on the team based on stats. You know, batting average doesn’t mean a whole lot, right?

      • jessecuster44

        Let’s wait till mid-June to have a referendum on Jay Bruce, please. Byrd is coming around… it’s about time for one of Bruce’s hot streaks.

      • IndyRedMan

        Hyperbole? Bruce is a career .190 hitter w/risp and 2 outs. The guy doesn’t have the confidence to get it done…period. Sure he can 3 run bombs when they’re already up 4-0 but that’s about it

      • Steve Mancuso

        More weak claims about Jay Bruce. Home runs this year:

        Score: 0-0, 3rd inning, Bruce hits grand slam
        Score: 0-0, 2nd inning, Bruce hits two run homer
        Score: 0-0, 2nd inning, Bruce hits solo shot vs. Cardinals
        Score: 1-0, 4th inning, Bruce hits solo shot vs. Pirates (Liriano)

        Bruce career: .249/.322/.465
        Bruce w/RISP: .249/.360/.442
        Bruce w/men on: .260/.349/.459
        Bruce w/man on 3rd, less than 2 outs: .345/.398/.645
        Bruce w/man on 3rd, overall: .264/.400/.560

        Nice job of cherry picking the data for your campaign against Jay Bruce. Please explain how a person has confidence with less than two outs but not with two outs. Self-evidently absurd claim.

      • jdx19

        What’s the sample size for your argument? Just curious.

      • IndyRedMan

        Jay Bruce’s career is my sample size
        .190 with 2 outs and risp

      • jdx19

        That’s not what sample size means.

        How many plate appearances has Bruce had while being at-bat with men in scoring position and two outs?

      • lwblogger2

        I think he walks a ton in those situations. Probably getting pitched around some. Yeah, the BA is .192 but his OBP is .346 in those situations. He has walked 101 times and struck out 154 times in 547 PA in that situation over his career.

        Going by the leverage index, Bruce slashes .231/.320/.426 in high-leverage situations over 935 PA in his career. Not world beating numbers but not garbage either.

        In general w/ RISP over 1153 career PA, he’s slashed .249/.360/.442, which is pretty much in line with his norms.

        So, the primary complaint is that he seems to stink with RISP and 2 outs. It’s come up in less than a season’s worth of PA but enough that it is somewhat significant. I’d agree with you that his BA has indeed been pretty poor in those times. He also doesn’t have a huge slugging in those situations. So, with RISP and less than 2 outs, Jay Bruce hasn’t been very good… In other “clutch” situations however, he seems to have had more success.

        Give me enough time though and I’ll find an area where a player is falling short for pretty much any player who’s not a super star.

  20. EinNKY

    29 MLB pitchers currently have an ERA over 8. Only 3 of those pitchers have appeared in more than 7 games-
    Burke Badenhop- 10 games
    Kevin Gregg- 11 games
    Jumbo Diaz- 11 games

    I know ERA and appearances aren’t the most important but this certainly paints a picture of the Reds bullpen.

    • jdx19

      RJ Alvarez. 13.00 ERA. 10 games
      Cody Allen. 9.00 ERA. 11 games
      Tim Stauffer. 8.38 ERA. 8 games.

      Also, there are 5 qualified relievers in MLB with ERAs over 8. Guys who have throw an inning or two shouldn’t count because givine up 1-2 runs gets you there.

      • lwblogger2

        What’s bad about that list is when Stauffer was signed I said to myself “He’s the kind of guy at the kind of money that could have helped the Reds.”


      • Bill Lack

        I said that about Badenhop…doh!

      • lwblogger2

        So did I Bill! Guess I’m 0 for 2.

      • jdx19

        I was hoping for AJ Ramos in the Latos/DeSclafani deal. But he’s probably too good as a throw-in.

  21. BigRedMike

    Byrd has been really bad to this point, but, his OBP is now above Hamilton. Not sure the Reds have any better options, but, Hamilton at the top of the order is certainly not helping.

  22. tgarretson82

    I know this has been said before many times, but I dont blame Price here. He was given Gregg, Badenhop, Marquis, and Diaz (who I think will come around). And this bench. The management in Jocketty is one who ABSOLUTELY HAS to start making changes if he wants to salvage the season. But he’s just sitting on his hands hoping that he can shine these turds.

    • jessecuster44

      No – one thousand times no.

      Gregg has proven that he cannot get it done. Don’t pitch him UNTIL the game is out of reach. Pitch him in any other situation, and you just might put the game out of reach.

      Price may have been given garbage, but he should be able to tell which piece stinks the most.

      • RedAlert

        You hit it on the head Jesse – he has mismanaged his garbage terribly

      • tgarretson82

        I agree with you to a certain extent. Price is totally mismanaging. But the root of the problem isnt the manager, its the roster. He has to give his best bullpen pitchers rest (Chapman, Cingrani). They cant pitch in every 1 run game.

      • jessecuster44

        Hoover and Contreras were the only other bullpen arms used. Diaz? Badenhop?( I know, but at least he’s not Gregg) I’d argue that since Cingrani was stretched out to be the long may in April, his arm should be OK to go multiple days.

  23. CJ22

    Why is Kevin Gregg on this roster and how much longer do we have to put up with this crap? He’s making 1.5 million to do this? Surely their is someone in the minors or on the waiver wire better than this. Next, does Skip Schumaker have naked pictures of Walt? That’s the only reason I can come up with as to why he is still on the roster. Would Heisey not have been better than this?

    • lwblogger2

      It all comes down to $$… I don’t know what happened. It’s possible that the Reds tried to trade Schumaker (who makes about the same as Heisey) but couldn’t, so they traded Heisey. Also, if they cut Gregg they have to pay the minimum to somebody. It’s baffling how budget-tight they are. A lot of bad contracts and I’m not even talking about Bailey, Votto, BP or even Marshall.

    • ohiojimw

      I don’t disagree about Shumaker but we were treated to 5 years of seeing Heisey fail regularly in similar situations. If he could have hit or even laid off of breaking pitches like Shu was waving at last night, Heisey certainly would have been a starter and maybe even an All Star from time to time

      • tct

        But Heisey has some pop. Skip doesn’t. Heisey is a solid defender who can play all three outfield positions. Skip isn’t a good defender anywhere. Heisey has decent speed and is a good baserunner. Skip isn’t . Heisey is average to above average at several baseball skills. Skip doesn’t do anything well.

        The question isn’t whether Heisey was good enough to be a starter. The question is whether the Reds bench would be better with Hesiey or Skip, and its not even close. Even coming off the bench with only 1-2 starts per week, I think there is as much as a two win difference between the two players.

      • ohiojimw

        And a guy with a good breaking pitch who doesn’t get greedy and throw a hittable fastball to Heisey will turn him every which way but loose with the same results as Shumaker gave them last night. My point was that one was as inept as the other in a pinch hitting role versus a guy that has an effective breaking pitch; and the Reds need to move and not look back.

    • PARedsfan

      You know Walt’s affinity for ex-Cardinal castoffs who are past their prime and shelf life seasons ago (which is why the Cardinals let them go!), but he can’t help himself. In his dinosaur mind he is somehow reliving the glory days with each of these mindless signings. Either that or he is still secretly on the Cardinal’s payroll to sabotage the Reds with h these signings…lol

  24. RedAlert

    The game has totally passed Walt by – he has no idea how to assemble a reasonable roster – gets most of his pieces off the scrap heap – endorsed by Big Bob – ashamed the direction this organization is going – however , I will stick by the Reds thru thick and thin as I have always done – just have to lower expectations I guess

  25. IndyRedMan

    Even Badenhop…as bad as he’s been….deserves the benefit of the hefty doubts in a 1 run game over Gregg. Badenhop was great last year for Boston….not just good. I haven’t looked but wasn’t Gregg pitching for the Fujiyama Panda fish last year or something?

    • jdx19

      Agreed. Badenhop has actually been a good reliever for many years in a row before this year. Not something that can be said about Gregg. Plus, he’s gotten a more disproportionate amount of bad luck (.424 BABIP against) than has Kevin Gregg. I mean, any time you have a sample size of 8 IP, sometimes even decent pitchers will have horrible stats.

  26. big5ed

    Gregg is utterly hopeless. No movement, no deception; fastballs at hitting speed. It’s hard to see how WJ can’t see the obvious. Gregg’s going to get himself hurt, if not killed.

    Maybe he should try throwing left-handed.

  27. WVRedlegs

    In honor of Homer Bailey having his TJ surgery today, with DeSclafani struggling, and with Jason Marquis schedule to pitch tonight, the Reds have outdone themselves.
    Reds announce that they have signed Jason Marquis to a 2 year, $13.5M contract with a team option for 2018 for $5M and a $2.5M buyout. Reds GM Walt Jocketty said, “We are very pleased to have Jason in the fold for the next two seasons. He will looked upon as our leader in the rotation until Homer Bailey gets back from TJ surgery. Plus it will give Homer someone to lean on in his recovery, since Jason has already been down that road. Jason is a veteran with gritty determination, leads our staff with a 3-1 record, and he will be a leader in our young rotation going forward. This is a very good day for the Reds.”
    Just kidding. You had to take pause for a few seconds with Walt, two year contracts, and ex-Cardinals and all. We HOPE that Jocketty is not this stupid. I have my doubts though. Have a good weekend as we take 2 of 3 from the Pale Hose.

    • jdx19

      I sat up in my seat a bit… you certainly got my hackles up!

    • big5ed

      The Reds have won 4 of his 5 starts. He’s given up only 8 runs in his last 3 starts, spanning 20.2 IPs. He may not be Walter Johnson, but Marquis has not been the Reds’ problem this year.

      Now, Jumbo, Badenhop and Gregg, on the other hand . . .

      • jdx19

        This 2 decent starts are against the Brewers and the Braves. Throw a good game against STL or WAS and I’ll start believing.

      • i71_Exile

        How about a good game against the White Sox? 🙂 I was going to compare Marquis to 2013 Bronson Arroyo, but that didn’t work out so well for Marquis. Move along. Nothing to see here.

  28. IndyRedMan

    I haven’t looked at it but I think its Falu at AAA that’s had a cup of coffee in the bigs and hit .277 and he’s doing well at Lville…..or that might be DeJesus? Jocketty could literally find 50 guys somewhere that could help out more than Schumaker?

    The biggest disappointment though has to be Price. They have a tiring Burnett on the ropes in the 7th with 1 out and 1st/3rd & down 1 run. Even casual baseball fans know how hard it is to score on the other 29 teams in the 8th….and the closer as well. You use your best hitter there…PERIOD. Price is Dusty lite without the toothpick and people skills

    • jdx19

      Skip’s use there was perhaps the most curious decision Price has made all year… and that is certainly saying something.

    • jdx19

      I wonder if this has precident, or not.

  29. Jeremy Conley

    Hmm, interesting announcement from the Reds:

    Larkin gets a real job in the Reds organization a few months after interviewing for the Rays managerial job. Larkin has always been my favorite player, and while I really don’t know if he would be a good manager or not, but I’d love for the Reds to give him a shot.

    Becoming a roving minor league instructor isn’t a fast track to the big chair, but I can’t believe that with how badly Price has been doing that the timing of this is accidental.

    • jdx19

      Interesting. Looks like he’ll get to split his time between Cincy/Dayton/Louisville and sunny Florida! Not a bad gig. Glad to have him as an official part of the organization again.

  30. Jake

    Remember when we all thought Ondrusek was bad?

    • jdx19

      I think we all would have taken Ondrusek over Kevin Gregg on day 1 this year. Ondrusek was a replacement level pitcher over the past two seasons, where Gregg put up -0.3 WAR with worse peripherals. Ondrusek is still bad. Gregg is just exceptionally bad at this point in his career.

      Also, I think a lot of the rhetoric against Ondrusek was because Dusty and Price would use him in high leverage situations, just like Price has done with Gregg. Not Ondrusek’s fault. If Ondrusek were the garbage time guy or the super-long man, I think most folks would not have had much issue with him. Sort of like how everyone hated Cozart when he was batting 2nd, then everyone was fine with him again when he was batting 8th! 😉

  31. CBD

    whenever i get frustrated and down on the Reds… i watch the youtube clip of Jay Bruce’s clinching homer in 2010. I still remember what it felt like after years of futility to win the division that year.

  32. Art Wayne Austin

    To jdx: The point of my Rally Leaders is to place the rubber where the tire meets the road, ie, how much does a regular eight contribute to victories. One player, Bruce, was being given a free ride and another, Byrd, was being ostracized. Byrd is a gritty type of player who is getting it done. Bruce is playing the role of Robert Redford in the movie, The Natural. I liked Bruce’s hustle the other night in diving for the ball in foul territory Now, if he’ll get his eyes closer to the ball when he swings contribution could be immediate and enormously rewarding for himself and the Reds. He can’t survive with another year like he had last year and presently.