Apparently, the Reds (34-38) bought yesterday’s game on layaway, paying for 6.0 innings upfront and getting the next three a day later. There’s a very slight chance for rain in New York today, so these games should be played unhindered. Interestingly enough, the Game 2 starters have a grand total of one career Major League start between them, with the Reds holding the more seasoned veteran.

STARTING PITCHERS
With the lineups for Game 1 staying the same and both teams already going to their bullpens, there doesn’t seem to be a pressing need to preview Game 1’s (sort of) starters. Carlos Torres will be on the mound for the Mets, and Manny Parra is still in for the Reds but don’t expect him to come back out for the 7th.

All stats 2015 AAA actuals:

PITCHER ERA FIP HR/9 BB% K%
Steven Matz 2.19 3.41 0.60 8.6% 26.2%
Josh Smith 3.56 3.03 0.38 5.6%% 17.7%

In his major league debut earlier this week, Josh Smith was not very good. After the game, he admitted that nerves had gotten the best of him, explaining his six walks over 3.0 innings. In the minors, Smith was known for his control and heavy curveball, but not overpowering velocity. See Doug Gray’s complete scouting report on Smith here.

For the Mets, native New Yorker Steven Matz will be making his Major League debut. Matz was drafted in the second round of the 2009 draft out of high school and came into the 2015 season ranked as the 33rd prospect according to Baseball Prospectus. Unlike Smith, it seems that Matz has been getting his nerves out off the field under the bright lights of New York. At his introductory press conference. when Matz was asked a question, his immediate reply was to look at the mic and reply, “Um, I talk into this?”

STARTING LINEUPS
Game 2 will begin 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1. When those lineups are announced, this post will be updated.

#VOTEJERSEYBOYS
The Angels and Reds are teaming up to get Mike Trout and Todd Frazier into the All-Star game. Prince Fish and Super Todd. The Millville Meteor and the The Toddfather. Starting CF and starting 3B. VOTE.

DATDUDEHBD

The Reds outspoken, big gloved resident team clown turns 34 today. Phillips has long been one of the biggest personalities in baseball and is one of the few who you always know that he lives for this game. If you’ve never heard BP’s draft day story, look it up; it’s hilarious and fits in his legacy quite perfectly. Phillips may be succumbing to the talent sapping progression of time, but he sure has been fun to watch these past 9 years.

Meanwhile, Joey Votto gave Brandon his birthday gift just one day early:

THE GRANDY MAN CAN
The Mets haven’t had much to be proud of in their offense this season, but over the past week, Curtis Granderson has been carrying this team. During his seven game hitting streak, Granderson has gone 11-24 (.458) with five home runs and six walks. His OPS is an absurd 1.692 in that stretch, and his wRC+ sits at 350. The rest of the Mets may be hitting like Oompa Loompas, but the Grandy Man is mashing.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS

It’s not every day this season that the Reds have been able to say they’re starting the more experienced pitcher in a match-up. That that experience today is one shaky start of 3.0 innings is neither reassuring about the present or future of the Reds’ rotation. Maybe we’ll see the pinpoint control Josh Smith today.

GO REDS

221 Responses

  1. Eric

    I can’t find the BP draft story. Do you have a link?

    • Wesley Jenkins

      agh I’m having trouble finding it myself…basically, the gist of the story is Brandon was planning on going to UGA when he found out he had been drafted by the Expos and was then told he was to report to Jupiter, FL. His response was along the lines of “But I thought I was drafted by Montreal?” —if I ever find the video, I’ll post the link

      • jdx19

        I also remember hearing something like he didn’t know the Expos were a major league team. Maybe I’m remembering incorrectly, because I find that hard to believe.

      • mwvohio

        I think I heard this story from the blue jay’s announcers back when we played them. If I’m remembering right they said he didn’t know the Expos were a major league team and was fairly ignorant of the entire minor league process. No idea how factual it is though.

      • Vanessa Galagnara

        I think everyone found it hard to believe Montreal had an MLB team. Might as well put one in Boise City or Little Rock.

      • jdx19

        MWV, now that you mention it, I think that’s where I heard it, too.

        Having a draft-eligible guy not know how baseball works seems like a bit of a stretch for me… I mean, I know athletes generally aren’t ‘rocket scientists,’ but still…

  2. Tom Reed

    Happy birthday to Brandon Phillips. He’s still making incredible defensive plays. I always wished he was more into working the count, but that’s not his style. An amazing career and still going strong.

    • mwvohio

      He’s never been anything less than a treat to watch defensively. I have no idea how difficult it is to learn to change hitting styles from free swinging to being more selective. I imagine a lot of it depends on visual ability and simply isn’t teachable but it’s still frustrating to watch guys in this day and age refuse to work counts and take walks.

      • Vanessa Galagnara

        And yet… He makes plenty of contact. Thankfully he tied the game for us yesterday. And won us the game the other day with a homerun. I for one like his old school ways. It takes the old and the new to make a team turn like a screw. What a boring game it would be without players like bp.

      • jdx19

        I’m sure everyone appreciates BPs defense and many enjoy his flash and flair.

        But are you honestly saying you enjoy BP swinging at a ton of pitches that are in the dirt or at his eyeballs? I mean… he can still be the same hitter he is without swinging at junk.

      • mwvohio

        Yep. Makes lots of contact this year but his power has vanished. Lately he’s stepped it up a little but overall on the year he’s hit for dramatically less power. He’s also been leading off a lot so getting on base more and seeing more pitches would really help us a lot. Also unless I’m mistaken seeing more pitches and taking walks isn’t new school when you’re batting from the 1 position.

        BP’s excitement factor doesn’t take place at the plate though. The showmanship is out in the field where he combines incredible reflexes and timing with lots of showboating and entertainment factor. I’m not saying I don’t like having him on the team; in fact I love watching him play. I just wish he wouldn’t refuse to walk and didn’t like to swing at everything.

    • jdx19

      Was supposed to have started at 1:10 eastern, but apparently it’s still in a delay.

      • Wesley Jenkins

        wow, my reading skills are just off today…a tweet from C. Trent says 1:30 new start time, I’m assuming eastern?

      • jdx19

        You’re right, though… ESPN shows 1:10 Central (12:10 MDT from my settings).

      • jdx19

        Ahh, I see now… the original game scheduled for today was a 2:10 ET game. Now that game is being pushed back to whenever. I guess CTR is probably right?

  3. ohiojimw

    From MLBRostermoves on Twitter:
    [email protected] designate RHP Chris Volstad and OF Jose Tabata for assignment.

    ****************************************************

    Tabatha is a guy that might be worth a taking a flyer on. If baseball reference has it right, the Pirates have already eaten the amount to essentially buy out his contract.

    • VaRedsFan

      He’s your guy if you ever need a guy to break up a perfect game with a HBP

      • jdx19

        Yeah. No doubt about that. Not sure Tabata’s upside is enough to warrant picking up a guy like that.

      • vegastypo

        Funny, as bad as the Reds’ bench has been, I was thinking there wasn’t much down side to picking him up, especially if the Pirates were paying him.

      • Tom Diesman

        Tabata is 26 and has put up a .275/.336/.377/.713 in Major league at 1765 PA. Reds leadoff hitters and their .219/.270/.316/.586 slash line says hi.

      • jdx19

        I didn’t say he was a worse hitter than Billy Hamilton and Skip Schumaker (the guys bringing those leadoff numbers down), I said I didn’t like his upside.

        He’s put up 2 fWAR in those 1765 PAs. That’s a below-average major leaguer.

        For a guy like that who has questionable character (in this poster’s opinion), he doesn’t warrant much thought.

  4. jdx19

    ‘There’s a looping liner to left.’ Grande has an unhealthy obsession with the words “looper” and “looping!” Not sure a liner can be looping! Hahah! 😉

    • mwvohio

      Mets guy called that a jammed hit by barnhart when he was clearly out in front of it and just laced it into right. Announcers are weird.

  5. vegastypo

    That Welsh is such a kidder, suggesting a 2-inning save from Chapman. Believe it when I see it.

  6. jdx19

    They are replacing Torres with…Torres. Hah!

    • jdx19

      The weirdest part of the whole situation with that hat is that just about every guy who gets hit (at least in my memory) is hit in the face or the side of the face, not in the skull. So, that hat would provide no protection.

      • mwvohio

        Yeah. I mean, it’s a cool idea but the look makes me think of those Russian fur-lined hats and makes me laugh.

  7. Vicferrari

    Collins might be micro managing this game, any body no anything about Robles…really high ERA to come in w bases loaded

    • mwvohio

      Looked like he had good stuff to me, was hitting 96+ on those fastballs.

    • Vicferrari

      Disappointing AB there, said batters were hitting .333 off him more walks than K’s…did look like he threw hard though

      • jdx19

        If they said that, shame. Both stats are wrong.

        7.79 K/9
        4.25 BB/9

        BABIP Against: .288, which means their actual AVG is lower (due to more Ks than HRs).

      • Vicferrari

        Gameday stated 9.00 ERA since May 26th, other stats must be for that period

      • jdx19

        Must be. So probably like a 7 or 8 inning sample size. Basically, worthless. I mean… his whole season is 17 innings… why cut it even smaller? I hate when announcers do that.

    • jdx19

      He’s only pitched 17 2/3 innings now… a high ERA doesn’t really mean much. Likely that he had 1-2 bad outings in his 22 appearances.

    • mwvohio

      Todd is a weird hitter. He looks awful in 3 or 4 at bats in a row then he looks like he could hit anything in the next one. Plus he is strong like bear and loud like cannon!

  8. Vicferrari

    I cannot believe Hamilton did not remain in the game, I am almost certain Matheus pitches one inning and we are stuck with this OF

    • Vicferrari

      Bad call by me, but basically got nothing out of Hamilton’s talents. Who knows if they left Hamilton in they put Byrd in left he does not make those plays.

  9. VaRedsFan

    hats off to Skip on that catch!!!!!!

  10. VaRedsFan

    back to back SKIP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. jdx19

    THIS IS SKIP’S WORLD> WE JUST LIVE IN IT!

  12. pinson343

    Schumaker for Gold Glove !!! Well, Gritty Glove maybe.

      • vegastypo

        that inning was pretty much the long and short of it offensively for the Reds….

      • jdx19

        If you add Skip’s distance to Jay’s, the ball makes the 1st row of seats!

    • jdx19

      If he hits a dinger, I”ll not say a bad thing about him the rest of the season.

      • mwvohio

        Can’t really blame anyone bashing Zack last year. He was dreadful at the plate. Guy is an absolute rock out in the field though.

      • jdx19

        Yeah… I don’t get this post.

        Cozart was a dumpster-fire at the plate in 2014. He deserved the bashing.

        With that said, I think most people around here were fine with a bad hitting Cozart as long as he batted 8th because he defense provided such great value.

      • earmbrister

        Despite a terrible year at the plate in 2014, Cozart was a middle of the pack SS because of his stellar Defense. With even average offense (which he has flashed at times) he’s a top tier SS.

  13. Indy Red Man

    Mattheus doesn’t have much velocity today? True Grit bailed him out once but 2nd inning doesn’t seem like a good idea. Its too bad Price can’t see that?

    • jdx19

      He’s thinking about “tomorrow’s” game again. In this case, it’s today’s game, but still.

      Never try to win today’s game… always try to win tomorrow’s game.

      • jdx19

        With that said, I don’t have a problem the Mattheus pitching 2 innings there.

  14. Indy Red Man

    I really like Mattheus a lot. He keeps the ball down…think the only HR he gave up was a cheapy oppo GABP special. 3 of the earned runs he gave up was from a 2 out grand slam allowed by Cingrani. I think he’s like 31-32 years old already but I hope they keep him for a few years

  15. jdx19

    Dominguez was oh-so-close to getting his 1st walk as a Red. Buuut, even 3-0, his 37.5% K-rate takes over!

  16. Indy Red Man

    These guys have no offense so we’ll prob gift them the walkoff with some bloop or something?

    • Vicferrari

      Feeling like it after 2 walks, Hoover threw a lot of pitches, be nice to get a run bring on Chapman for the 10th and possibly have both available for game 2

  17. pinson343

    Hoover couldn’t throw a breaking pitch for a strike, gets out of it anyway. He has so much more poise than last year. I kept thinking of early last year, when he blew a save at Citi Field on a grand slam HR.

  18. Vicferrari

    Mets are allowed to use their closer for 2 innings? especially in a non-save situation

    • jdx19

      You’re right, though… he’s been in a slump since his 3 HR game. He’s been walking, still, so it hasn’t been a particularly bad slump. Something like .250/.370/.350. Bad for Votto, not for some people.

  19. Vicferrari

    Finally Familia throws ball 4, c’mon Todd Father

  20. Indy Red Man

    Dude throws 97-98 and the ball drops a ton!! How does anyone hit him?

    • jdx19

      He put decent wood on it, at least! Just hit it at the 3Bman. I’m really not in the mood for a 15 inning game followed by another… haah! WIsh that would have fallen in.

  21. Vicferrari

    Why not leave Hoover in or go with Chapman, I would think Hoover could throw 2 innings and save Chapman for Gunderson and Duda

    • spro

      Hoover threw 27 pitches, and it seemed like more

  22. VaRedsFan

    Each BHop pitch starts outside edge and run right back to the middle of the plate

  23. pinson343

    Badenhop has been OK since his horrible April.

  24. jdx19

    Burke getting it done. We’ll probably see him for another inning. Next game we get all the AAA pitchers.

    • mwvohio

      Next game very well could be a clown show. On BP’s birthday. Probably fitting.

  25. Vicferrari

    Is Suarez not available, I thought he was on the bench

      • Vicferrari

        Thank goodness him and Chapman can discuss what they will do when this occurs…Might be game 2 or later in the week

  26. seat101

    Looks like I haven’t missed anything.

    I understand we have a new leftfielder named Skip something… Is that right?

  27. jdx19

    Can pitchers pitch twice in a day? We’re using a lot of relievers for 1 inning in this game.

    • vegastypo

      Just kinda odd that the Reds were so bullpen-heavy that when they were allowed to add a guy for the doubleheader, they’re adding an outfielder.

      • pinson343

        It gives them the usual number of bench players, instead of going one short.

      • vegastypo

        Right, I see the effect. Just not used to a team playing so short-handed to begin with. … And the irony being that because of these extra innings, the Reds might STILL end up short in the bullpen if Game 2 proves competitive.

    • seat101

      If only we had that amphibious pitcher.

      I understand he has a really mean submarine pitch. Period

    • Vicferrari

      Looks like he handled the pressure pretty well, threw nothing but fastballs in an 11 pitch walk to Tejada, Gameday made it seem like he made Duda and Cuddyer swing at a lot stuff in the dirt.

      • hof13

        I am listening to the game. That is how Marty and Brantley made it seem too.

  28. Tom Reed

    Votto’s timing the throw to the pitcher at first before he catches the ball. Granderson again.

  29. jdx19

    Good on Contreras for bearing down after the Votto error. Let’s see if 1-2-3 can put SOMETHING together.

  30. pinson343

    Great job by Contreras, working around Votto’s error. He has some very good stuff, just needs to throw strikes.

  31. jdx19

    Opponents’ defensive alignments never cease to amaze me. Granderson standing 15 feet from where that ball is hit and it was crushed.

  32. Vicferrari

    I think you have to go with Contreras for another inning, Suarez might pitch before Chapman

    • Vicferrari

      Exactly what I am thinking, and what exactly happened…Gameday shows a single on a bunt pop up to pitcher

  33. jdx19

    Wasn’t the infield fly rule in effect there? Welsh advocating for letting it drop to get Lagares off base.

      • jdx19

        Ahhh, ok. Thanks. Always thought it was in effect any time you could drop a ball on purpose for a double play.

      • Vicferrari

        Thought so too, what is the purpose of the infield fly rule then

      • vegastypo

        if the batter runs to first base, and the ball is allowed to drop, you’ll get the force at second, but no DP … but with TWO guys on, and they both have to hug a base on an infield pop, that’s when a defense could get a cheap double play.

      • jdx19

        ‘Should be.’ Lots of guys dog it to 1st on a pop up.

    • vegastypo

      Just remembered, extra inning games help Marlon get to his plate appearance clause in his contract.

  34. jdx19

    DeJesus is slow. Terrible throw and he’s out by 4 feet.

    • Vicferrari

      They just do the double switch, keep Suarez in the game, would think they would bring Chapman in with Gunderson coming up and Duda if any one else gets on but thought that previously as well

    • ProspectCincy

      The reason Villarreal is the last available today … because he’ll be needed for Smith.

  35. jdx19

    Well, Adcock has seen enough, apparently.

  36. VaRedsFan

    Bruce totally assumed the runner wouldn’t go to 3rd and didn’t charge the ball.

    • RedAlert

      I noticed that also – very non aggressive

  37. jdx19

    Suarez needs to figure something out… he’s been about as good as me at SS.

  38. Scot Lykins

    I turned it off. Bruce playing like that did it for me.

  39. VaRedsFan

    Phillips was 33 when this game started

    • ProspectCincy

      Because it’s Bryan Price … AND because Chapman is his second to last available arm; if he comes in now and the Reds don’t score in the 14th, they’re essentially toast.

  40. Jeff Morris

    The last four years have seen Reds have major injuries, that was hard to overcome. 2012 is when Votto was hurt, and came back, but was not 100%, then in 2013 it was Ludwick who hurt himself sliding in the first game of the year, then in 2014 it was Bruce and Votto, now this year, in 2015 it is Mesaraco and Cozart. But, the Mesaraco injury really hurt the Reds Bats, and the Cozart injury really hurt the defense. Suarez seemingly has had an error every game in the last 5-6 games. Wonder if the Reds will ever have their full lineup, or will they always be injury bugged…..

    • jdx19

      Not an error. Watch the reply. Votto with little chance to get the runner off that high hop.

    • jdx19

      Not sure Votto would have been able to throw the runner out off that hop. Herrera runs well and was going on contact. Not an error, but sad that he muffed it anyways.

      • jdx19

        UFB, of course, is Unidentified Flying Baseball, for all the kids out there. 😉

        FFS? Free Frosted Sno-Cones.

      • jdx19

        Watch the reply. Votto didn’t have a good chance on the runner at the plate.

      • jdx19

        Yeah. Tough to watch. But with Herrera breaking on contract and having some speed, there was really no chance once Votto had to do a full vertical leap and then land, square his body, and throw.

      • pinson343

        I’m with Vegastypo, don’t want to watch right now. Anyway the key was walking the speedy, light-hitting Herrera.

      • Adam S.

        Votto is a horrible defender. I am tired of the excuses made for him. But at least he walked twice

      • jdx19

        Ok, Adam S.

        Clearly you don’t watch much baseball. Go watch a few games of every team. You’ll notice, as far as first basemen go, Votto is closer to the top than the bottom.

        There’s a reason why guys like Votto play first and not shortstop.

        I understand the frustration, but coming off two bad innings from Votto, your post is obviously emotional and not based on any logic.

  41. Kywhi

    The Reds played like a Little League team during that half-inning.

  42. pinson343

    Adcock collects himself to get the 2 ground balls, backed up by TERRIBLE DEFENSE.

    • vegastypo

      Very true. Contreras dodged Joey’s bullet, but at some point, our luck was bound to run out.

    • RedAlert

      Not much of one with Smih on the Hill I’m afraid – Reds ain’t gonna sniff .500 this year – every time they start inching closer, lose close games ( one totally gift wrapped) like these last 2 games and right back to 4 under

    • jdx19

      I’ve seen it 4 times and I disagree. There’s a chance, but it isn’t certain. He had to land and square his body, wind up, and throw. And as we’ve seen lately from lots of catchers around the league, it’s somehow hard to get your foot on the dish. And the throw has to be accurate.

      I put the odds of completion at 15% if Votto comes down with that ball.

      • VaRedsFan

        Since it was a force, IMO I think he would have gotten the out 3 outta 4 times

  43. jdx19

    New game thread for the next one? Or are we hanging out here?

  44. tgarretson82

    This team is anemic! Can’t get a run in 6-7 innings of the Mets bullpen. Meanwhile Chapman will be used when we’re up 4-0 five days from now

  45. mtkal

    With young, inexperienced pitching. when the Reds’ bats are quiet, at least they usually have solid defense. When that lets them down, there’s really not much hope. (Not saying the last play was an error. I didn’t see it yet. Just in general.)

  46. wildwestlv

    I’d say that finishing at or just above .500 is now the only official goal for the season. From the front office to the dugout.