The Cuetoless Reds (43-53) finish their short 6-game road trip with a three game series in St. Louis. The Cardinals (63-35) currently have a six game lead over the Pittsburgh Pirates, the best record in baseball (3.5 games over the Royals), and the best overall run differential.

These two teams have not played since the Cardinals swept Cincinnati in St. Louis on April 19th. The Reds have lost to the Cardinals in five of six times this season. Both teams have league average offenses averaging 4.0 runs per game, but the Cardinals pitching staff has been far better than any other club in the majors. Their 286 runs allowed (just 2.9 runs per game) is 57 runs better than the Pirates second best pitching staff. There are 13 major league teams within 57 runs of the Pirates.

STARTING PITCHERS

PITCHER ERA FIP HR/9 BB% K%
Raisel Iglesias 5.45 3.47 0.8 8.2% 22.2%
Lance Lynn 2.80 2.68 0.6 7.5% 26.1%

Raisel Iglesias made his major league debut against the St. Louis Cardinals back on April 12th. In that game, he retired the first seven batters that he faced and 11 of his first 12 batters. He escaped from a walk and a double in the 4th inning before giving up three runs in the 5th. That start was similar to what he experienced last week against the Cubs, though in the Cubs game he made it to the 6th inning. Iglesias has major league stuff. To stay in the rotation long-term, the Reds are looking for him to worker deeper into games and get guys out that third time through the batting order.

The Cardinals have only lost two of the last nine games that Lance Lynn has started. Lynn was only responsible for one of those losses. During that nine game stretch, Lynn is 4-1 with a 2.14 ERA. He’s coming off back-to-back quality starts where he’s given up just three runs on eight hits, two walks and 17 strikeouts over 13 innings. This will be the first time for Lynn to face the Reds in 2015.

STARTING LINEUPS
Tonight’s Reds lineup:

  1. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
  2. Joey Votto (L) 1B
  3. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
  4. Jay Bruce (L) RF
  5. Brayan Pena (S) C
  6. Marlon Byrd (R) LF
  7. Eugenio Suarez (R) SS
  8. Raisel Iglesias (R) P
  9. Billy Hamilton (S) CF

Matt Holliday is getting a day off in the Cardinals lineup:

  1. Kolten Wong (L) 2B
  2. Matt Carpenter (L) 3B
  3. Jhonny Peralta (R) SS
  4. Jason Heyward (L) RF
  5. Yadier Molina (R) C
  6. Stephen Piscotty (R) LF
  7. Dan Johnson (L) 1B
  8. Peter Bourjos (R) CF
  9. Lance Lynn (R) P

REDS TRANSACTIONS
Today the Reds called up catcher Kyle Skipworth from AA Pensacola. Skipworth is taking Johnny Cueto’s spot on the roster, likely until just Thursday when the Reds will need a 5th starter. Tony Cingrani will not be Thursday’s starting pitcher as he is scheduled to pitch for Louisville tonight.

Chris Dominguez was designated for assignment to make room for the new pitchers acquired yesterday. Brandon Finnegan and John Lamb have been assigned to AAA Louisville while Cody Reed is heading to AA Pensacola.

CARDINALS RUMORS AT FIRST BASE
In need of more offense, the Cardinals have been rumored to be discussing Adam Lind (.285/.365/.500) with the Milwaukee Brewers. After Matt Adams’ season ending injury in May, the Cardinals have been leaning on Mark Reynolds (.229/.312/.391) for most of the starts at first base.

CUETO AND VOLQUEZ REUNITED
The trade of Johnny Cueto to Kansas City means that he is reunited with former Reds teammate Edinson Volquez. Volquez has been the Royals best starting pitcher this season, and I’ll be rooting for those two to have a successful run in the post season.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS
If the Reds cannot win it all, hopefully they can play spoiler to the Cardinals tonight and the Pirates in the weekend series. There’s no better team I’d like to see the Reds knock off right now than the Cardinals. They’ve got the offense to do it, and hopefully the young, inconsistent pitching can string together a number of great outings.

Go REDS!

118 Responses

  1. I-71_Exile

    Whenever I hear the name Lance Lynn, I think of Lance Link, Secret Chimp. Yes, I am easily distracted and have a mind cluttered with pop culture.

    Go Reds! Shake off the post-Cueto doldrums.

    • reaganspad

      I think that tony larusa played matta hairy in the TV series

    • msanmoore

      And the spy boss, Darwin. I remember Lance’s character in briefings asking, “So what’s your theory, Darwin?”

      Oh the brain cells that have to hold that and can’t hold other stuff.

  2. msanmoore

    Am I reading too much into Skipworth as a pending Pena trade? Then again, who else might they have called up? But the DFA of Dominguez says something other than just a bench butt until Thursday to me.

    • Steve Mancuso

      It would be nice if they could find a trade partner for Peña, but I just can’t imagine any team wanting him. Zero power. Nothing to offer defensively. He’s not expensive, so the Reds don’t have a strong reason to trade him for financial relief.

    • Tom Gray

      Rodriguez hurt (day-2-day). Not many good candidates on Reds 40 man roster.

      • msanmoore

        Yeah, I realize options are limited. It’s the whole 40-man bit that confuses me.

      • jdx19

        It would be nice to see him get at least an AB or two unlike Yorman last time.

    • Greg Dafler

      Skipworth was already on the 40-man.

      Trading Cueto reduced the 40-man roster to 39 active players. Two of the three pitchers the Reds received had to be put on the 40-man roster. Dominguez was DFA’d to reduce the # of active players to 38 so that they could add both Royals prospects to the Reds 40-man.

      • msanmoore

        OK, that’s the part I missed. That makes much more sense. Added out of necessity … or desperation. Your pick.

      • Morgan Mayham

        Still the question is are they go with a 8 man bullpen the rest of the year?

  3. jdx19

    No matter what their records, I’ll always be up for a Reds-Cards tilt. Lets get those WLBs!

    • msanmoore

      Kind of like Reds v. Braves or Reds v. Dodgers of the old NL West days.

  4. jdx19

    Can anyone think of a reasonable explanation why Pena has been batting 5th?

    • tct

      I don’t get all the Pena love not only by the Reds but some of their fans too. I mean he seems like a good dude, but he’s basically a replacement level catcher. Yet, I’ve heard so many people talk about him like he’s a good hitter.

      And the Reds themselves are even worse; not only is Price batting him fifth this year, but last year he was deemed a good enough hitter to play first base when Votto went down. Craziness. I think maybe it’s just because people let things that happen in the first month or two set the narrative for the rest of the year. And last year, and this year too, Pena was hitting for a pretty good average in April. But it was a pretty empty batting average with few walks last year and no power this year.

      • BigRedMike

        Pena has a higher wRC+ than Phillips

        Both have significant negative offense WAR

      • CP

        Some people can’t get past batting average.

  5. vegastypo

    The real show comes Thursday. Will Price bother to tell Skipworth he’s getting sent back down before C. Trent reports that the starting pitcher for that day is already in the clubhouse? … Who do these reporters think they are, anyhow?

  6. jdx19

    If Pena were qualified, he’d have the lowest ISO in MLB by 34% (.035 to .053 by Angel Pagan).

  7. TomatoTovotto

    The 40-man roster is weird to look at right now: a lot of exciting but still-developing pitching talent, zero infield depth, and a very depressing collection of outfielders.

  8. jdx19

    BP always brings it against STL. Love watching him against the Cards!

  9. jamesgarrett

    Man its hard to imagine being any worse then we are with RISP.

  10. jdx19

    Votto wasted no time extending his 2x on-base streak to 14 games.

      • jdx19

        Reds record is 15 games by Pete Rose. I have no idea what the overall record is. Gotta be somewhere in the 25 range, I’d bet.

  11. jdx19

    If only we didn’t have the weakest hitter in the league hitting 5th… if only…

    • Vicferrari

      Makes no sense to hit Byrd and Suarez below him. Gameday showed Bruce swung out 3 pitches outside before the SF and so was Pena, gotta like that aggressive inning- at least they got 1

  12. Indy Red Man

    Bases loaded….nobody out. Bruce swings at ball 4 and then Pena hits into a dp. Big shocker

    • jdx19

      Don’t you usually like sac flies? Bruce got a ribeye steak! Maybe I’m mistaken.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Yes but bases loaded, no outs, middle of the lineup,and Lynn struggling with command; you probably need to get more than a single run. Oh well, that’s baseball.☺

      • jdx19

        Well, yes. I agree. Just poking fun at Indy and his not so veiled hate of Jay Bruce.

      • Indy Red Man

        Good memory…lol. Hey atleast I didn’t point out that Bruce does all his damage when the Reds lose by 10 yesterday.

      • jdx19

        Bruce’s homer put them up 4-2, right? You really need a new schtick, man.

      • Indy Red Man

        That was my joke man….I know

  13. Indy Red Man

    Barnhart/Pena aren’t the worst combo in the world but if Mesoraco can’t catch atleast 100+ games then they’re never going to have a good offense with the current roster?

  14. jamesgarrett

    Barnhart needs to get most of the playing time going forward so we can see what he can do.He is part of the future Pena is not.

    • jdx19

      I’d guess Pena will be Iglesias personal catcher because the are both Cuban, or something along those lines. Agree, Tucker should get every other start.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Probably should be the regular and Pena a true backup. Playoff hopes are dashed, who are we fooling. Play the kids.

    • Vicferrari

      Exactly but is Price still playing personal catchers?

    • tct

      Didn’t you know that only Latino catchers can catch Latino pitchers? That seems to be the rule lately. I mean, it’s not like they have hand signs that would be universally understood. Oh, wait……

      Also, Tucker has reached base 10 times in his last 13 pa. Now, 3 of those were intentional walks, but that was just cause Tucker’ s manliness scared the daylights out of the Rockies.

      • ohiojimw

        I think it had more to do with the fact the Reds bat their pitcher 8th because Hamilton is such a poor offensive player until he manages to get on base 🙂

  15. jdx19

    Heyward was standing on the RF line… wtf. Took away Raisel’s first big league hit!

    I guess there is a reason why he’ a GGer.

  16. Indy Red Man

    Cingrani smacked around again in Lville tonite? They need to shut him down if he’s still throwing 89 mph

    • charlottencredsfan

      Or bring him back to Cincy and let him continue to be a 1-inning reliever. He needs to develop a couple of pitches before he can be a dependable starter, IMO.

  17. jamesgarrett

    Had Lynn on the ropes in the 3rd and let him get away.He got us in order in the 4th.We may not get many more chances to score against him.

  18. jamesgarrett

    I am not sure if its physical or mental with Cingrani.He sure has taken a step backwards.The reds need to decide what he is going to be a starter or reliever.

    • charlottencredsfan

      Neither. The league figured he has one decent pitch and the deception he has is not enough. Just wait him out until he throws fastballs.

      • CP

        That doesn’t explain his 6.56 BB/9. Sounds more like mechanics and/or injury to me.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Or lack of an out pitch. That combined with marginal control is making it more than difficult.

      • CP

        Maybe, but he’s still striking out 10+ per 9 innings. He’s a weird pitcher. My recollection is that he gets behind the count a lot.

  19. Mack Ashley Potter

    Wanna hear the Reds season in a nutshell?
    With Lance Lynn on the ropes and not able to throw a strike if someone offered him $100 Million to do so, Bryan Pena (who is normally a very smart ball player) swings at the very first pitch and grounds into an inning ending double play with 2 on.

    • Evan armstrong

      Or you can look at it as knowing he is struggling he is going to throw one down the middle to get a strike and not get behind so I need to jump on that first pitch.

  20. charlottencredsfan

    Can Iggy show some poise – here we go>>>>>>>>>>>

  21. Morgan Mayham

    Who starts thursday… Lamb?

  22. Evan armstrong

    Tucker is going to get plenty of starts going forward but if the young Cuban SP is more comfortable with Pena behind the plate then its a no brainer. Going forward our objective must be the development of players and not worry about W and L.

    • jdx19

      If that’s the case then Iglesias needs to get comfortable being caught by someone not from Cuba. Pena is not part of this team’s future. Tucker might be.

      • Evan armstrong

        And next year that will be but for the reminder of this season why not allow him to have Pena. Exactly what is the downside?

      • jdx19

        The downside is that IF he really is more comfortable with his countryman, then he’s going to gain a false sense of security and the learning process will be hindered when he actually has to be caught by someone else.

        As you mentioned yourself, the time is now for players to grown and learn… for Raisel, perhaps that means learing to pitch without your training wheels, or something to that effect.

  23. jdx19

    No surprise at all. Full count, grand slam.

    Blow it up.

    • Evan armstrong

      Ain’t gonna happen. Young pitchers are going to make mistakes and we just have to relax and allow them to grow and learn.

      • jdx19

        Yes… while they grow and learn the Reds won’t be competitive. Blow it up and restock so when these suspect young pitchers maybe become decent we ARE ready to compete.

      • Evan armstrong

        Well blowing it up isn’t going to happen. We have a nice core and have key players returning next season. Just be patient.

      • Vicferrari

        It took Cueto 2 full seasons to be decent, just look for positives, he was 1 pitch from going into the 5th inning with a shutout. The 4 runs just came an inning or 2 early the 3rd time through is just brytal

      • charlottencredsfan

        This is very true. Kid looks like he can throw but he needs to learn to pitch. I’m not overly concerned. That was too fat a pitch in a 2-2 count. 3-2, okay. As long as his inning count stays reasonable, I’d keep starting him.

      • ohiojimw

        Iggy may be proving that he is what he was in Cuba, a reliever (but probably a very good one at that); and I’m starting to wonder if maybe they shouldn’t send Lorenzen back to the fall league this year but as an OF. Between the way Lorenzen is giving up long balls and the dearth of offensive talent in the org, it could be a good move all the way around.

  24. msanmoore

    And that’s how it blows up … have a great evening, folks.

  25. Vicferrari

    Unbelievable splits:
    1st time through 143 .208 .184 .391
    2nd time through .326 .404 .478 .882
    3rd time . 429 .500 .786 1.286

      • charlottencredsfan

        Or a kid that has stuff but needs to learn to mix pitches better. Striking out 5 in 4 innings isn’t a bad sign.

      • jdx19

        Could be that. But the fact that he’s fallen apart in every single start after 65ish pitches is a pretty bad sign, so far.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Yes, you’re right but I’m looking for improvement. For instance, bounce back here and finish strong would be a nice sign.

      • Evan armstrong

        He has pitched how much this season and he is how old?

      • jdx19

        All I did was say he looks like a reliever. Not sure how anyone can say that’s wrong with a straight face. What that you have seen makes him look like a starter?

        I never said he can’t become a starter… just that what he’s shown so far seem to align with being a reliever. Namely, no stamina (I know, you have to build up), good K-ability, and mediocre command. To me, that looks like a reliever.

  26. huskycardinal

    Not surprising. This dumpster fire of a season will give the reds young staff a chance to work through their mistakes without worrrying about missing the playoffs. That ship has sailed.

  27. CP

    Iglesias reminds me a lot of a young Cueto/Volquez. Both guys had amazing stuff, but struggled to get to the 5th/6th.

    • charlottencredsfan

      Nice call. Somethings can only be gained with experience. We have plenty of time for that.

    • huskycardinal

      I can see that. I was at a reds/cards game where Cueto pitched and gave up 7 runs in 2 innings, and Pujols wasn’t even playing. I hope he can become the quality of Cueto/Volquez.

      • ohiojimw

        My memory of the maturing Cueto is that they would get him 4 run (or more) leads and he would find a way to blow them. That always came back to me these last several years when it seemed like he had to pitch his posterior off every turn because they could never score runs for him.

  28. Kurt Frost

    Rewind it and listen to Lynn yell “Fornicate yeah!” when he strikes out Frazier.

  29. jdx19

    Not sure I’ve ever heard of an official scorer taking the time and effort to change his score from a sac bunt to an out.

    I agree with that, but still odd!

    • charlottencredsfan

      The bunt was odd. 4-1 game, do you just shut BHam down on the bases? Kind of disappointing.

      • jdx19

        Yeah. I agree it was a weird spot to try and beat the shift. Not sure Hamilton was going. DIdn’t seem to eager to steal will Brandon at the plate.

      • charlottencredsfan

        Did Lance ever throw over to first when Billy was there?

      • Vicferrari

        1 run makes a big difference in the 5th, just lost their fire. No reason Billy does not steal unless they are just scared

  30. jamesgarrett

    Iglesias has swing and miss stuff

  31. jamesgarrett

    Lynn just plunked Bruce.Payback time from the Cards.Would love to see some fire from our guys right now.

  32. jamesgarrett

    Guess we don’t have any fire or fight.I am gone for tonight.

    • jdx19

      If Skip were playing we’d at least have grit!

    • Evan armstrong

      Can someone or anyone tell me how from your TV you are able to gauge the fight or fire or desire of a team or player?

  33. jamesgarrett

    Iglesias hit two Cardinals tonight.You can bet Lynn went after Bruce.

    • Evan armstrong

      Why? He is struggling tonight himself and he knows the other pitcher is very young and green. There is zero reason to plunk Bruce.

    • jdx19

      He didn’t even hit him. It grazed his jersey.

  34. CP

    Iglesias has only pitched 8 games for the Reds, and has 9+ K/9, with 2.95 BB/9, and a 3.60 FIP. This is the perfect type of season for him to get stretched out.

  35. jdx19

    The kid certainly buckled down after the Cardinal Way dinger.

    Nice to see. 7k in 6ip. I’ll take that every time.

  36. charlottencredsfan

    Play smart Reds and let’s have a big inning, and get Iggy a W.

  37. charlottencredsfan

    I’ve heard of “hit” and run but “bunt” and run. Come on young Billy, play smart.

  38. charlottencredsfan

    We had a couple opportunities but so far no cigar. 6 more outs to make something happen.

  39. jdx19

    I think after this game Votto will overtake Frazier in WAR. 4.0 to 3.9 or so. Might be tied at 4.0 if Frazier doesn’t drop.

  40. Mack Ashley Potter

    UNBELIEVABLE…..NO MATTER who is at bat….for over the last 5 years now…..how the Cardinals ALWAYS seem to keep up with the big hit when needed. I mean they could be getting no hit but if they get that one single chance they take advantage. Compared to the Reds NEVER getting that hit. Unreal.

  41. Mack Ashley Potter

    I like Jumbo. He’ll be closing for the Reds in the long run. Chapman is prob gone soon. Unfortunately our window has almost closed. We had a good run considering what we Reds fans have went through in the 90’s. Just develop all this young pitching we have, get a manager, demote Price back to pitching coach, and we’ll be back in the Playoffs in a few years.