Reds’ starter David Holmberg simply didn’t have it on Saturday night. The 24 year old lefty was pasted for seven earned runs in two-plus innings pitched. He walked four batters without any strikeouts at all. But it was the three home runs he allowed that guaranteed a short night for him and a long night for the team. Games like tonight are why I ranked Holmberg 26th out of the 27 starting rotation candidates the Reds have in the system.

Holmberg threw a whopping 64 pitches in his brief time on the mound, and 35 of them were balls. When he did manage to find the plate he also found the sweet spot of a Dodger’s bat. Chavez Ravine is normally a tough place to hit home runs but tonight was the exception to the rule.

The Reds started off the scoring against Dodgers’ lefty Brett Anderson in the first inning when a Joey Votto single was followed by a Todd Frazier home run. The long ball was his 29th of the season, putting him one behind Bryce Harper for the National League lead. Todd also had a single and a walk later in the game. Frazier seems to have put his prolonged slump in the rearview mirror with his recent hot stretch. Watch the home run HERE.

Holmberg managed a scoreless first inning but the wheels came off in the second. Rightfielder Yasiel Puig led off the inning with a line drive blast over the centerfield wall. Leftfielder Carl Crawford walked and then advanced on a wild pitch. Holmberg walked catcher A.J. Ellis but got centerfielder Joc Pederson to hit an infield fly rule popup. The Dodgers generously gave Holmberg a free out when the pitcher Brett Anderson put down a sacrifice bunt. Shortstop Jimmy Rollins singled to left to score Crawford and tie the game at 2-2. Next came the body blow. Second baseman Enrique “Kike” Hernandez teed of with a three run homer that would provide the winning runs as the Dodgers’ took a 5-2 lead they would never relinquish. Watch and listen to the great Vin Scully call the highlights from the Dodgers’ 2nd inning HERE.

The Reds managed a run in the top of the 3rd when Brandon Phillips singled and was driven home by a Votto double to left field (Watch it). The score was now 5-3 Dodgers, but that was the last time the Reds would dent the plate.

In the bottom of the 3rd inning third baseman Justin Turner took Holmberg deep to right field. Then Puig and Crawford drew walks. That was it for Holmberg. The Dodgers got another run on a fielder’s choice ground out by Pederson.

Yet another short outing by a starting pitcher meant the bullpen would be taxed again. Pedro Villareal pitched solidly for three innings, although he did allow a 4th inning home run to Dodgers’ first baseman Adrian Gonzalez. Ryan Mattheus pitched two scoreless innings and Jumbo Diaz came on to get the last three outs while allowing a hit and a walk. The bullpen gave up only one run in six innings for one of the few bright spots for the Reds in this game.

It was Back to the Future night at Dodger Stadium. Watch it here.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (51-64) 3 7 1
Los Angeles Dodgers (66-51) 8 12 1
W: Anderson (7-7, 3.48) L: Holmberg (1-2, 5.95)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Box Score | Game Thread

Player of the Game:

Todd Frazier went 2-3 with a walk and a home run. He had two RBI and scored once. He also made an error. Frazier leads the team with 73 RBI, nine more than Jay Bruce.

Good Stuff:

— Todd Frazier tied his career high in home runs with 29, equaling his total he set last year.
— Joey Votto has recovered from his 0-14 streak and seems to be back in the smoking hot groove he has been in since the All Star break. He went 2-4 today with a double, RBI and run scored.
— The Reds are gearing up for an early draft pick.

Bad Stuff:

— The Reds went 0-3 with runners in scoring position. Marty and Thom will whine about the oh-fer. I whine about creating only three opportunities w/RISP.
– The four home runs the Dodgers hit was the most they have hit in a game all year.
— The Dodgers now have eight players who have each hit 10 or more home runs this season.

Up Next:

Anthony DeSclafani will climb the bump to start Sunday’s game. Disco has been pitching well lately. He will be opposed by Dodgers’ ace Zack Greinke. I say he is their ace despite the presence of one Clayton Kershaw. Can’t argue against that 1.59 ERA. The former Cy Young winner is leading the league in ERA, WHIP and winning percentage. Could be trouble for the Reds.

Reds vs Dodgers at 4:10 PM Sunday afternoon.

Reds: RH Anthony DeSclafani (7-7, 3.75) vs Dodgers: RH Zack Greinke (12-2, 1.59)

18 Responses

  1. seat101

    Great recap! I guess it was a good night to have to go to bed early.

    I have a question though. Who will be the pitcher next year whom we will count upon to end any losing streak?
    I am assuming that Homer will not be available early in the season, and will probably take a while to return to his old form. Assuming, arguendo, what do we do for that stopper?

  2. redsfan06

    The Reds aren’t going to have that pitcher to count on to stop a losing streak next year. They aren’t going to be in the hunt for the playoffs either, They are going to be sorting through the other 26 candidates for the rotation to determine what they have. With Bailey, the hope is he pitches well enough by the end of the season to give reason to believe that he will be back to form in 2017.

    • greenmtred

      Good to get this much advance warning that next season’s outcome is a foregone conclusion. Think of the other stuff I can accomplish without the distraction of Reds baseball!

      • redsfan06

        Well, if you think otherwise, please feel free to make your case. Next year won’t be the first season the Reds outlook didn’t look good. That doesn’t mean there isn’t something worthwhile watching; such as, the development of the Reds pitching.

        If the only thing that makes it worthwhile watching for you is seeing the Reds contend for a playoff spot, you must have spent a good portion of your life pursuing other accomplishments without the Reds being a distraction.

  3. mark from nc

    Holmberg is a 24 yr old lefty, not righty.

    Although I did have a few too many vodka cranberries last night and it was a late game, so who knows…

  4. sultanofswaff

    Holmberg is AAA insurance, nothing more. He simply doesn’t have swing and miss stuff. What I wonder is who do we have available (health\innings limits\40 man roster issues) that we could get a look at in September instead of this guy. I’d hate to waste those starts on a known commodity.

    Dejesus is really bolstering his case to make the team next year. Still, like Negron, we’re gonna have to see a lot more to be convinced.

    • jessecuster44

      Hopefully Holmberg is not part of future plans. He has not looked impressive.

    • sezwhom

      I agree. He’s a fill-in for now but I seriously doubt he figures in the starting rotation next year. Too many others have greater upside.

  5. VaRedsFan

    Saw an interesting stat this morning:
    The Reds are 12-33 when allowing 4 or more walks in a game.

    • Vicferrari

      I would think that is typical for all Major league teams?

  6. peter ponds

    Terrible strike zone for the second night in a row. A pitcher like Holmberg cannot survive with that kind of squeezing zone.

    BTW, Holmberg is a LEFTY.

    • jessecuster44

      I don’t think being squeezed is why Holmberg left pitches up in the zone. He just didn’t pitch well.

    • big5ed

      Holmberg might have been more effective last night had he been throwing righthanded.

      I am sure he is a fine young man; pays his taxes, is kind to animals, etc., but I don’t see any evidence that he is going to make much money playing baseball.

      • Dick

        This is correct. I’m sure he’s a stud in AA.

  7. Tom Reed

    The Reds go for a series split today with a win in L.A.

    • jazzmanbbfan

      Could be a challenge against Greinke. Hope DeSclafani has his good stuff.