The Reds (34-38) dropped the series opener to the Mets last night behind their ace and now watch as rookie Michael Lorenzen takes on one part of the two-headed Mets’ ace that is Harvey and DeGrom. The Mets, similar to the Reds, are looking to get through the season with a rotation loaded with young, unconditioned arms. Yesterday, they announced that to rectify that problem, the team would be using a six-man rotation for the near future.

Vote for Super Todd here.

All stats are 2015 actuals:

Matt Harvey 3.18 3.36 1.16 4.1% 25.2%
Michael Lorenzen 3.56 5.62 1.46 12.2% 14.8%

If you just looked at Michael Lorenzen’s traditional numbers (3-2, 3.56 ERA), you would think he was having a spectacular rookie campaign. Expand the view out to the more precise stats though (5.62 FIP, -0.4 WAR), and Lorenzen’s season more closely resembles a dumpster fire. So which is it? Well, neither. The traditional numbers are skewed as they almost always are but in this instance, so are the advanced stats. Lorenzen’s 12.2% walk rate compared to just a 14.8% K rate is the culprit. Advanced stats see him putting runners on base and completely relying on his defense to get out of those jams, i.e. his advanced stats go through the roof. What that theory doesn’t take into account is the skill that is pitching to contact. Lorenzen has not yet proved to be an effective strikeout pitcher, but he sure can pitch to contact to get guys out and minimize damage. Walks will haunt, just not quite yet.

He shares a name with Two-Face, but the city has dubbed him their Batman. For good reason too, over 50 career starts, Harvey has posted a 2.61 ERA and a 2.62 FIP. He’s struck out 354 and has a WHIP of 0.99. Harvey is indeed the Real Deal, and Tommy John hasn’t seemed to have hampered him much at all. Harvey’s bounced back from the surgery better than most pitchers are before, and his consistency has not waned as he has had only one start of less than 6.0 innings this entire season.

With Skip Schumaker in CF and Marlon Byrd in LF in today’s Reds’ lineup, Jay Bruce has been spotted conferring with Billy Hamilton on the best way to cover the entire outfield by yourself. Ivan DeJesus gets the start at short over the defensively struggling Eugenio Suarez:

1. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
2. Joey Votto (L) 1B
3. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
5. Marlon Byrd (R) LF
6. Skip Schumaker (L) CF
7. Ivan De Jesus (R) SS
8. Tucker Barnhart (S) C
9. Michael Lorenzen (R) P

The Mets roll with the same lineup as last night:

1. Curtis Granderson (L) RF
2. Ruben Tejada (R) 3B
3. Lucas Duda (L) 1B
4. Michael Cuddyer (R) LF
5. Wilmer Flores (R) SS
6. Juan Lagares (R) CF
7. Kevin Plawecki (R) C
8. Matt Harvey (R) P
9. Dilson Herrera (R) 2B

When I posted the lineup yesterday, I had the thought of, “Wow, I only know like three names in the entire Mets lineup.” So today, here is a primer for the lesser known names on the 2015 Mets:

Juan Lagares is a 26-year old in his third year with the Mets. In his first two seasons, he was worth a 3.0 WAR and a 4.0 WAR but has been just barely over replacement level this year. Where he made up for his weak bat in the past was his spectacular defense (it earned him a five year contract), but this year even that has been just average.

Kevin Plawecki is the Mets touted rookie catcher who’s been filling in for the injured Travis d’Arnaud and had the grave misfortune of debuting the same day as Addison Russell and Carlos Rodon. The 40th ranked prospect according to Fangraphs coming into the season, Plawecki is known as a decent defensive catcher but a big bat. So far, the bat hasn’t lived up to its hype, as Plawecki has hit .227/.273/.313 through 41 games. With d’Arnaud hurt again, Plawecki is here to stay.

Dilson Herrera, the other Mets’ rookie who got his first cup of tea in 2014, was the 7th best prospect in the Mets’ system coming into 2015 according to Keith Law, and “just missed” Law’s top 100. Herrera has now made two stints in the big leagues this season, once in early May and then from mid-June until now. Another weak bat, good glove kind of player, Herrera earns his keep in the field but has the tools for a Dee Gordon-esque batting renaissance in the next couple of years.




In news that likely breaks the hearts of baseball fans everywhere, Giancarlo Stanton is projected to miss the next 4-6 weeks with a broken left hand. The injury would prevent him from playing in the All Star Game or, more importantly, participating in the Home Run Derby. I thought maybe we would see a ball clear the riverboat, but now that hope is no longer. I doubt Thom understands my sadness.


The Reds’ defense today seems to be a case study in just how many runs can we give up to a weak hitting team. With Lorenzen’s reliance on his defense, my guess is going to be upwards of five. But we do have eight guys down in the bullpen so this is exactly how management wants this game to go. My brain hurts.


31 Responses

  1. Michael J Hampton

    The original lineup I saw had Byrd in CF, so I guess that was a mistake. At least now Byrd is in his usual spot (for this season) but Skippy in CF, really?

    • vegastypo

      Could have put Negro in CF, but I keep forgetting, we needed to have 14 or 15 pitchers on the roster, so he got sent down. … Better be a ground ball pitcher today, Mr. Lorenzen.

      • renbutler

        Negron might improve the defense in CF, but good luck getting him on base. Ever.

    • vegastypo

      And I also saw a lineup on Twitter (from Fay) that had Byrd in center field. Not that it matters too much, I fear.

      • Steve Mancuso

        Bruce is a better CF than Byrd, but then the manager and GM would have to admit they don’t have a second CF on the roster right now, which they don’t.

      • renbutler

        How does playing Byrd there (instead of Bruce) prevent the same admission?

      • Steve Mancuso

        Fig leaf – they can say Byrd played there the last couple years, which he did a little, tiny bit. 2 games for the Mets in 2013. Did a lot earlier in his career.

  2. Scot Lykins

    Harvey is on the mound. It matters not what lineup they put on the field. But we did beat Cole, so there is some hope, just would not put any money on it.

  3. renbutler

    Lots of rain all up the East Coast. They managed to just start a game in light rain in Philly, but heavier rain is headed toward the big cities. Games in Baltimore and Detroit have already been PPD, and Pittsburgh just put the tarp out in advance of the Pirates’ 4:05 start.

    Bottom line: Be prepared for a delayed/suspended/shortened/postponed Reds game today.

      • renbutler

        If that happens, I expect a split day-night doubleheader Sunday. Normally, MLB doesn’t want any scheduled games conflicting with Sunday Night Baseball, but they’ll make exceptions for postponed games. CLE and BAL are doing the same thing tomorrow after today’s rainout.

  4. hof13

    Nice job by Lorenzen. Good to know it isn’t just the Reds that get a lead off double and then don’t score.

  5. Eddie

    Looking for a nice long delay or postpone the game. Either way we don’t have to face Harvey.

    • Vicferrari

      But the Reds would have to come up with 2 starters tomorrow- should they do a DH…are they still going Josh Smith tomorrow?

  6. I-71_Exile

    Dang. Reds need a new book on Granderson.

  7. Indy Red Man

    One solo HR in the 3rd and we’re prob less than 20% to win now. 2 runs will prob win it in this mess even if they go 9 innings. 1 might be enough?

  8. VaRedsFan

    batting the pitcher 8th gets harvey out of the game. On 2nd thought, Reds would have walked the 8th place guy to get to MH.

    • Vicferrari

      Almost an hour between comments, was not sure if anyone was keep up with the game. A shame Lorenzen could not get the last batter, no excuse for walking a .200 with the only guy hitting on deck.

  9. VaRedsFan

    31 game hitting streak for BP at the NY Mets, with his RBI single in the 5th

  10. VaRedsFan

    This inning is eerily similar to last night. I hope Parra can get Grandy with the bases juiced

    • Vicferrari

      That was tough, why are the umps making them play in that mess. Only getting the look-ins on MLB network but rain water was coming off of the batter’s helmet every time they lead down…base ball getting too wet to throw as Parra had trouble getting on same page with Barnhart

  11. Vicferrari

    So how does this work if the game is called, do they suspend it or call it a tie and make them play a DH tomorrow from scratch. Reds would be at a huge advantage as judging from Jo0sh Smith’s performance Tuesday they are already short 1 SP and would need 2.
    On a side note what was the point of keeping Smith on the roster when they had such a short bench? Surely they could have brought someone in tomorrow to pitch and then waited to send down Negron

    • Steve Mancuso

      Play tomorrow picking up where the game left off.

  12. Steve Mancuso

    #VoteFrazier during the rain delay