After an unexpected day off yesterday, the Reds (55-77) will play two against the Brewers in a day-night doubleheader. With the Rockies’ win last night, the Reds are now in a tie for fourth worst team in the Major Leagues and sit 3.5 games behind the Phillies (53-82) for the worst. The Marlins (56-79) are just a half game worse than our Reds, and the Braves (54-81) continue their hopeless free fall to the bottom.

All stats are 2015 actuals:

Matt Garza 5.56 4.95 1.44 8.3% 15.9%
John Lamb 5.24 3.68 1.61 5.2% 30.2%

Instead of leaving the pitching matchup from last night’s game intact, Bryan Price is shaking things up a bit to keep the weather off-balance. In place of Keyvius Sampson who will start the night cap, rookie John Lamb has been given the arduous task of toeing the rubber against the Brewers’ Matt Garza. Lamb was superb in his last outing–6.0 innings, 2 ER, 8 K’s, 0 BB–but he took the loss anyway because TOS*. Through four starts, Lamb has already accumulated 0.4 WAR and has a 2.92 xFIP, so it seems his fortunes may turn around soon enough.

I wrote about Matt Garza in yesterday’s preview, but in case you didn’t read yesterday’s preview, the summary is: he’s having a horrible year. Garza has given up 5 runs or more in 8 of his 24 starts, which moves his season definitively out of the few bad starts category and into the repeated pattern category. Also, Garza has been worth 0.5 WAR over his 24 starts, a number John Lamb has nearly matched in one sixth of the time.

All stats are 2015 actuals:

Wily Peralta 4.30 4.47 1.08 6.8% 13.5%
Keyvius Sampson 6.43 4.61 1.29 9.8% 18.8%

Pushed a full 24 hours from his original scheduled start, Keyvius Sampson will take the mound in tonight’s outing against the Brew Crew. Sampson has struggled mightily in his last three starts–posting an 11.35 ERA in 11.o innings–after his first three starts showed so much promise. If Stephenson is brought up to the bigs at some point in this last month, there is a better than good chance he will replace Keyvius in the rotation (unless innings limits dictate otherwise).

Before Wily Peralta pitched against the Reds last Sunday, there were reports claiming he was experiencing dead arm and that was why he had suddenly lost the ability to get anyone out. Peralta, presumably annoyed, then went out and tossed 7.0 innings of one-run ball with six strikeouts, proving that no he did not have dead arm, he was actually just bad for two starts. For the season, Peralta has posted a 0.7 WAR, which is the best of any pitcher throwing today.

Tucker Barnhart gets the start behind the plate today:

1. Jason Bourgeois (R) CF
2. Jay Bruce (L) RF
3. Joey Votto (L) 1B
4. Brandon Phillips (R) 2B
5. Todd Frazier (R) 3B
6. Skip Schumaker (L) LF
7. Eugenio Suarez (R) SS
8. Tucker Barnhart (S) C
9. John Lamb (L) P

Jason Rogers starts at first in place of Adam Lind for the Brewers:

1. Jean Segura (R) SS
2. Jonathan Lucroy (R) C
3. Ryan Braun (R) RF
4. Khris Davis (R) LF
5. Jason Rogers (R) 1B
6. Domingo Santana (R) CF
7. Hernan Perez (R) 3B
8. Elian Herrera (S) 2B
9. Matt Garza (R) P


Today is the first big college football Saturday of the year, so if you aren’t feeling six maybe seven hours of Reds’ futility, go watch some students who somehow manage school and sports concurrently (or have someone manage it for them). I will be at the Cardinals/Cubs game myself, defiantly wearing my Brandon Phillips jersey, hoping both teams will lose.


90 Responses

  1. Shchi Cossack

    Joey has some serious makeup work to do today. While the Reds were washed out, Harper put up a 1.101 OPS yesterday, going 2-3 with 1-HR & 2-BB. Nice to see Garza on the mound for Joey’s batting practice today.

  2. VaRedsFan

    Skip batting ahead of Suarez….nice.

  3. Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

    Just turned the game on and see the lineup. I hate griping about lineups but why is Skip starting any games in September? Duvall or even Lamarre should be starting over him. The Reds are wasting a golden opportunity to see what they have for next year but they’re not even using this time for anything smart. Makes no sense to me.

    • Jim t

      Maybe the Reds already know what they have in these two players.

      • Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

        I disagree. I don’t see how they could know what they have with these guys without playing these guys. When a team is this fat out it is irresponsible not to prepare for next season and play the young guys. Maybe they’ll figure something out who knows? But they’ll never know with not getting them playing time.

      • Jim t

        Ryan you must not have a lot of faith in the MLB scouting process. The Reds have had Lamarre in the system since he was drafted. Duvall was just added as a throw in in the Leake trade. No way does either have a impact at the ML level. The Reds and Giants scouting department as well as their performance will tell you that. If they are to be on a roster it will be exactly filling the role they are filling now. PH or occasion sub. Also scouting report on Duvall is he can not catch a cold in OF. You subbing him for Joey? Only two position outfielders in Reds minor league system are worth looking at Winker and Y-Rod. One is injured the other not yet ready at AA. Plus if I’m pitching for the Reds I want the best players playing behind me. You think those guys want to face a ML team without giving themselves the best chance to win?

      • Michael J Hampton

        Maybe, but they definitely know what they have is Skip. Price did the same thing last year, one of my biggest gripes with him. There is nothing to be gained by playing Skip at this point and that shows just how clueless Price is.

      • Jim t

        Mike who did you want him to play last year?

      • Jim t

        Mike everyone complains about the bench. Most loved the Shumacker signing when it occurred. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. He has PH very well this year. Like all subs when he plays everyday his production falls. If it didn’t he wouldn’t be a bench piece. While you may think his at bats are a waste being they could go to other prospects I can agree but those two are not propects. If the Reds had a legitimate prospect ready to play at this level I’d be all for giving him a look. Fact is they do not.

  4. Carl Sayre

    Bruce gets a single, Votto walks and I think it was Marty junior (Thom) started in about the Reds are in last place they don’t need JV walking to be in last place they need to do something if JV isn’t going drive in runs. BP got the base hit to drive in Bruce then it becomes maybe they need to do something to get people to hit behind Votto’s walks. I get so sick of the snide comments because he won’t swing at pitches out of the zone. Great hitters hit strikes they don’t chase balls out of the zone period.

    • pinson343

      Is he still really talking about that ? Idiots said the same thing about Ted Williams his whole career, history is repeating itself.

    • Carl Sayre

      My mistake it wasn’t Thom commenting it was someone else on the broadcast. Lamb has given up some cheap hits in the sixth maybe someone with better knoweledge can answer this. He has pitched well in his starts with the exception of one bad inning. Does he need to play fall ball or winter or does he need the rest? The Reds defense and I use that term mockingly has let him down this inning, one charged error but with real ball players out there he is 2 outs into the 7th.

  5. Shchi Cossack

    I really like listening to Chris talk intelligently about baseball without the continuous nonsense from Thom B. Chris also doesn’t engage in a lot of self-promotion during the broadcast. I’m not a huge fan of the play-by-play guy, but at least he has enough common sense and professionalism to not talk over or try to show up the color guy and he doesn’t detract from the game on the field.

  6. DHud

    Article by saying Reds “balancing playing contenders, prepping for future.”

    Well they need to stop it. Newsflash: they aren’t contenders. They only have the future

    • vegastypo

      The ironic thing, to me, is that if there were pennant races left in the NL, I could at least understand the argument. But the West is set, and the Central and East are probably set, as is the wild card. Maybe try to play your best lineup against the Pirates and Cards on this homestand, but after that…….But the other part of it is that playing your best lineup these days probably means benching guys like Schumaker, Why he is still in there, I have no clue.

    • pinson343

      By “playing contenders” they mean playing AGAINST contenders. Teams out of the race are supposed to try to be competitive against contending teams for the “integrity” of the race. At least, that’s the tradition.

      • DHud

        It’s a stupid tradition. The Reds owe nothing to other teams. Their only objective should be doing what is best for the Cincinnati Reds, and, right now, that’s preparing for 2016

    • Chuck Schick

      The future may be a long way off

      The Reds have 78 million committed for next year to 8 players. This is roughly the same amount as the entire 2011 payroll.

      If we assume the attendance estimate for next year is around 2 million ( average from 2004-2009 Dark Ages) then revenue should drop by about 20 million (500k fans x $40 estimated revenue). They set the budget based on projected revenue which is largely driven by their internal attendance estimates. Also, at this point, there is no cable deal in place after 2016. That is a huge financial uncertainty. The opening day payroll this year was $115 million, so next year’s payroll may be in the $95 million range.

      Votto, Bailey, Phillips, Bruce, Meso, Frazier, Skip’s buyout and Badenhoff are on the books for 78 million. Chapman is estimated at 10 million……so you have 88 million of a possible 95 million budget committed to 9 guys. So you need to allocate 7 million over 16 players (430k per head) which is less than the MLB minimum of approx. 500k.

      Obviously, something needs to give…..someone or several someone’s need to go….but even that isn’t easy.

      Votto has 10 years/225 million left on his deal, so despite his greatness, there is a limited number of teams that could afford him. Chapman is a year from free agency and the market for expensive closers is not what it once was. They could very likely be stuck with him. Bailey is not tradeable right now, nor is Meso. Frazier and Bruce may be tradeable, but the return would be very little.

      Yes, they have young arms…..but teams seems hesitant to give up any hitter of value, especially one’s that are under cost control, so that “plan” may not bear the fruit many expect.

      I hope Barry Larkin knows what the next 3-5 years look like.

    • Jim t

      DHUD, the Reds have two legitimate outfield prospects in the minors at or above AA. Y-Rod or Winkler. one is injured and the other is in AA. Playing Lamarre or Duvall is not prepping for the future.

      • Tom Reed

        But playing Duvall or LaMarre is prepping for next years bench.

      • Jim t

        Tom they are. They at best will be subs. I’ll also bet you a sundae Lamarre isn’t on the team. Duvall may be a bench piece on a bad club.

      • DHud

        And besides, I still think both of them are better ball players than Schumaker

      • DHud

        Watching Shumaker’s excuse for play in LF today

  7. Vicferrari

    Looks like Lamb off to a great start. Every game getting slightly better. Lets hope he does not get the syndrome Igelsias seemed to have where he fell apart during the 3rd time through. Would be great if he could get some 7 inning starts built up as the year winds down.

    • Vicferrari

      So close to having a good outing just could not get it done. I find this very frustrating and it is the bottom of a very crappy Brewers line-up that he cannot get out

  8. Vicferrari

    Suarez is having a game, busting out of his first legit slump, good to see

  9. jamesgarrett

    Suarez 3 for 3 with 2 runs knocked in so far today.Kid continues to hit.

  10. pinson343

    And Schumaker is batting 6th and Suarez 7th because ….. ?

    Led to a wasted (leadoff) double by Suarez in the 4th, when he could have been at bat with a runner in scoring position in the 3rd. Luckily, in that case he gets a chance because only 2 out after Schumaker strikes out.

    I won’t miss Price.

  11. msanmoore

    And the wheels on the bus go round and round … and then they fall off. Thanks, Skip.

  12. Jeff Morris

    Anybody know… Schumaker’s contract with the Reds up after this season??

    • Shchi Cossack

      Unless the Reds picl up the team option for $2.5MM with a $500K butout.

      • DHud

        I think we could raise the $500k from fan donations if that’s what it will take

  13. msanmoore

    I like Lamb even with what little we’ve seen from him. Needs a little more luck (don’t we all) and to figure out how to go 7 innings on a regular basis. I keep reminding myself he’s a young lefty and we need that. Personally see him as our #4 next year.

  14. msanmoore

    Today – right now – I miss Billy. He’d have been under that one cooking a ballpark dog and waiting. Wasted start again.

  15. Indy Red Man

    I flip the channel over to see True Grit showing his usual brilliance in leftfield! Can we please pay him to go away next year? Poor Lamb deserved better. Bourgeois looked like a 20 something stumbling out of a bar at 2am on that one?

    • DHud

      That’s the starting outfield Price put out there.

      But hey, the Reds have to follow baseball etiquette and play their most competitive lineup

    • Shchi Cossack

      Can we please just eat the rest of his 2015 contract and release him? I’m more than tired of seeing Price insert Schumaker into the lineup against RH starting pitchers.

  16. jamesgarrett

    Why in the world would you leave Lamb out there after giving up 4 straight hits and now a fifth that ties the game.Nobody in their right mind would do that.Talking about building a kid’s confidence.He pitched a good game and deserved to be taken out when he could only win the game.Good grief how bad do we have to let it get before Price gets fired.

    • vegastypo

      In fairness, Lamb gave up three flare-type hits, and a ground ball that just eluded Frazier. Not like he was getting hit hard at all.

    • Shchi Cossack

      Are you kidding? Are you watching the game? Every one of those hits had eyes and the only one hit remotely hard was a ground ball through the infield. This is why BAbip often references luck or the law of averages. The mistake was the lineup Price fielded against Garza. LaMarre catches the ball hit by Lind to CF. Anyone except Schumaker catches the ball hit by Perez to LF.

    • Vicferrari

      Why not see what he can do, there is nothing else to find out, who do you suggest bring in to face left hand hitting LInd. It was a great move sticking iwth him. Lamb needs to get better and figure out how to get average hitting lefties out in a tight situation or you are stuck depending on below average Ofers

    • Tom Reed

      A last place finish should guarantee Price’s exit as manager of the Reds.

  17. Indy Red Man

    Grit could play with the Reds another 3 years and Duvall would still outhomer him in 1 atbat. Was is it with Jocketty and scrubs? Is he forcing Price to play him? Duvall needs some atbats. DeJesus is hitting pretty well and if would be nice to see him in LF or CF to be better prepared for a utility role next year. He hasn’t played out there much and still looks a little shaky in LF. I’d still take him over Grit if you blindfolded him.

    • ohiojimw

      When Bourgeois failed to end the inning by catching the Lind fly ball, I turned the TV off; I’d had enough. I was out of the room on Braun’s hit but the next two that Skippy couldn’t catch topped by Bourgeois’ misplay did it for me.

      They were saying early on over the radio that Price had to play his best line up versus the Pirates, Cards, and Cubs because of the playoff implications. Today should have demonstrated that Skippy in the OF is not his best line up. Duvall couldn’t be any worse; and from what I’ve seen DeJesus would be better than Skippy.

      • DHud

        No, that makes sense. Stop making sense

  18. jamesgarrett

    I’m not watching the game but regardless of where they were line drives or bloops you take him out for the reasons I mentioned.Can’t wait to here Price explain this one.Bet you hear he was throwing good,didn’t want to use up the pen and it happened so fast we didn’t have anybody ready or Lind is a lefty and I thought he would get him.Did I miss any?

    • Vicferrari

      It was the correct play. rookie pitch need experience getting out games, this games means nothing other than possibly evaluating talent who might contribute to a winning club. He was at around 90 pitches and has a decent line if Lind’s ball was caught. The dumb move would have been to bring any of the nighties to face Lind, is there a quality lefty in that bullpen available other than Chapman?

  19. vegastypo

    Duvall doesn’t have enough experience to play left field? After what we’ve just seen from Schumaker, the bar can’t be set very high!!! C’mon, Price, think a little bit. Please.

  20. CP

    Chris basically said Price doesn’t feel Duvall can play LF. I think that is a valid concern, but you might as well go ahead and bite that bullet and see if he can get some experience in this last meaningless month.

    • Shchi Cossack

      And Chris also made the point that the game is between 2 teams with absolutely no playoff implications so there is not reason to play a lineup to be competative in fairness to the other teams. This was a game to play guys and find out what they can do. Chris then mentioned the reason for Price tnot playing some guys to find out what they can do would be Price’s attempt to not finish in last place and have such a designation on his resume.

    • ohiojimw

      Price is more out of touch than I previously thought if he thinks Skippy can cover LF at this stage of his career. The Rogers’ ball in particular looked like a very ordinary chance. Rogers’ himself seemed to be joking that he couldn’t believe it wasn’t caught.

      BTW, I have my doubts that the Reds can afford Hamilton’s offense on an every day basis; but, I’m guessing he not only catches the Lind ball, he also runs down the Rogers’ skyball.

  21. DHud

    Did Bourgeois leave his arm at home? That was an awful throw…

    • Shchi Cossack

      Bourgeois has a terrible arm. He really isn’t a very good CF, but he does have some speed. I think Heisey was a better CF than Bourgeois and Heisey was only adequate in CF.

      • pinson343

        Agree about Heisey being average in CF and better than Bourgeois in CF.

  22. vegastypo

    They were talking about Badenhop being good in the clubhouse. Great. Now can we work on getting guys that are good on the mound, too?

  23. Shchi Cossack

    I wonder what kind of coach or manager Schumaker might make? He’s a no nonsense player and teammate. WJ’s signing him to an overpriced. 2 year contract was not Schumaker’s fault. No one else would have offered such a contract to Schumaker. At one point, Schumaker was an OK player, but those days are long gone and have been for some time.

    • ohiojimw

      In my comment below I was looking to fit in that in days of yore, when guys lost it during the season, they simply walked away at mid season; and, often became coaches if they fit the bill. The money today makes it very hard for a guy to do that.

      Look at Skip, aside from the money for this year, I believe he has a 6 figure buyout on the option. Some orgs find ways to work with guys in such situations but we already know communication is not a strong point of Reds baseball ops management.

    • Michael J Hampton

      Exactly, my complaint for the last 2 years hasn’t been with Schumaker, it’s been with the way Price has played him and not given the younger guys a chance. Skip has not been productive offensively and his defense leaves a lot to be desired. I don’t believe the young guys last year or this year would have put up any worse numbers than Skip and there was a good chance they would have put up better numbers with regular playing time. But Price is too stuck in his mind set to be progressive in any way, shape, or form.

      • Shchi Cossack

        How many years have we endured a GM providing poor players on the 25-man roster and the manager over-utilizing those poor players. I know I had my fill of this 5 years ago. Time to get out the brooms for the Baseball Operations management.

  24. ohiojimw

    In slight defense of Skippy, a guy can only do what he can. I think his issue as much as lack of foot speed is that he simply can’t see the ball well anymore. He looked tentative on both those fly balls and whiffed on barehanding the one on what looked like a pretty friendly bounce. And all of this came after acting like he wasn’t seeing three straight pitches in the same spot when he called out on strikes.

    • pinson343

      Schumaker was asked about who would play LF after Byrd was traded. His reply:”If I’m starting much, the Reds are in trouble.”

      At least he’s honest.

  25. DHud

    Grit with the rally-killing double play. Luckily he fell face first into the tying RBI

    • Shchi Cossack

      No RBI on a double play, just a run scored for Votto.

      • DHud


        My point was Schumaker needed to be given bases loaded and no outs to be useful

  26. jamesgarrett

    Really first pitch homer to the number 8 hitter.

  27. DHud

    So done with this team finding ways to be bad at baseball…

  28. jamesgarrett

    How many runs score before Price goes and gets Hoover?

  29. Ryan Lykins (@ryan_lykins)

    Skip and Bourgeois have no business starting anymore games the rest of the year. Play the young guys. Don’t be stupid. Use this time for something useful and evaluate your players that will be competing for bench spots next year. Why does this seem so hard for this team to do? Who cares if they lose every game at this point with the young guys? The veterans aren’t doing any better at the moment so what the heck. Come on Reds be smart that’s all we want.

    • DHud

      I don’t think it’d be too far of a stretch to say the young guys may actually give the Reds a better chance of winning

  30. VaRedsFan

    so skip is up now instead of Suarez.

  31. DHud

    Great, who else would come to the plate with the game on the line…

    None other than Grit himself

  32. pinson343

    I liked the idea of starting Lamb (instead of Sampson) against Garza in Game 1, giving the Reds a better chance to take advantage of Garza. And it would have made sense to start his A lineup, which I thought he had, until I see Schumaker in LF and batting 6th (ahead of Suarez !). Ugh.