Reds fans were part of a fascinating and exciting weekend of baseball in Cincinnati as rookies Robert Stephenson, Luis Castillo and Tyler Mahle squared off against Pittsburgh. Overall, the Reds young arms held their own against the Pirates’ somewhat-featherweight offense.

But for the second day in a row, the Reds offense struggled. They did walk seven times (five by Joey Votto) but only managed six hits, one for extra bases.

The Pirates won the series, but the Reds still lead over the season 9-4 and have outscored Pittsburgh 65-44.

The Reds have tomorrow off, then host the New York Mets for three games. After that, the Reds travel to Pittsburgh for another series against the Pirates.

Cincinnati Reds 2 • Pittsburgh Pirates 5 || Box || Play Log || Statcast

Tyler Mahle made his much-awaited debut. One of the Reds top prospects, the 22 year old was drafted in 2013 in the 7th round. Since then, Mahle has rocketed through the organization, splitting 2017 in AA and AAA. He threw a no-hitter for Daytona in 2016 and a perfect game for Pensacola this year.

The young right-hander got off to a good start, spotting a 94-95 mph fastball and retiring the Pirates in the 1st on 10 pitches. A bit of wildness surfaced in the 2nd inning when Mahle walked two, hit a batter and gave up a double for two runs.

Overall, Mahle threw 92 pitches over 5 innings. He struck out five and walked four. All three runs against him were knocked in on ground balls.

The Reds bullpen handled the final four. Some innings were easy, others not so much. Kevin Shackleford and Drew Storen pitched clean innings. Michael Lorenzen allowed runners to reach second and third (walk, double) before retiring the side with help of a double play. Raisel Iglesias came in to pitch the 9th. The first three Pirates got hits, adding two big runs.

Joey Votto saw 22 pitches in walking his first two times at the plate. Votto walked three more times, for a total of 40 pitches seen.

The Reds missed a big opportunity in the 2nd inning when they loaded the bases with no outs. But Adam Duvall, Scooter Gennett and Jose Peraza couldn’t get a run in.

Chad Wallach, 25-year-old catcher, made his first major league start. Wallach came to the Reds from the Marlins in 2013 in the Mat Latos-for-Anthony DeSclafani heist. Wallach is the 14th player – 9 pitchers – to debut with the Reds this year. He has been catching for Louisville and was called up with Devin Mesoraco on the DL and Stuart Turner on paternity leave. Wallach was 0-for-4 at the plate.

27 Responses

  1. Mike Adams

    Wow! Duvall left ten men on base.
    Were the Pirate pitchers that good against him, or as someone said in the game thread, give that man a day off?

  2. Sliotar

    Is Price managing as if he does not know his fate, and is trying to win every game in hopes of coming back next year?

    Two examples:

    -For the second straight season, Duvall’s second half is not shaping up to be as good as his first half. Ervin is on the bench. Why not play Ervin more? Even if you believe the Reds should try for a higher pick, playing Ervin would seem to further that goal.

    -Lorenzen came back today, after pitching last night. Adleman was an option, seeing how he warmed up in the 9th.

    That’s now 7 appearances, all of an inning or more, in 13 days.

    For a guy that had arm problems last year, and a scare this year…and is projected as a starter next year….why do this?

  3. james garrett

    As usual Cossack you are right on the mark.He was rushing in both innings although he gets the ball and throws it with not much messing around.Let the young guys pitch is my motto.As for Duvall he has a history and diabetes so get smart and give him a couple of days off along with Billy.Gee its so obvious they need it.

  4. Steve Hanshaw

    Agreed, but Castillo should hit an innings limit after 1 more start, two at most. Would love to see Zen Master get those starts the rest of the way. Reed still needs to get is control and mental issues worked out, but he’d be my second choice.

    Sentimentally, I would not object to Arroyo getting a one inning retirement send off start, out of respect to all he’s meant to the organization over the years.

  5. Aaron Bradley

    Is Phillips playing 3B for the Braves this season? He qualifies at that position in the MLB 9 Innings phone game (which is a really good game, give it a try, free in the Google Play Store! You can friend me in the game my team name is Farney.)

  6. Scott Carter

    You are pinning a scary picture. Unfortunately you are right. That is what is so scary.

  7. Scott Carter

    Good thing we score plenty of runs with Billy at the top of the lineup. Otherwise the past two games would be difficult to watch.

    • da bear

      Exactly WV. Reds have lots of streaky hitters. Their ‘average’ runs scored is decent, but a lot of runs score after they’ve been blown out.

      Their scoring is lumpy, and testament to Castillo’s 2-7 record, the Reds don’t score WHEN IT COUNTS. They need more Winkers who produce game in, game out, higher OBP guys….and fewer streaky hitters (nearly the whole team).

      • james garrett

        Tell it like it is Cossack.Data driven easy to see just plug it in and play ball.However it could be just to much to grasp for the Reds.

  8. james garrett

    The worse is yet to come.DW is on record as saying they weren’t losing games in the dugout or something close to that.The point is he wasn’t holding Price accountable.I feel strongly that he will be back primarily because he should have already been gone.The story on Billy is proof of that in my opinion because nobody would say something like that unless the GM or owner had his back.Nobody would be that smug or arrogant to know Billy’s obp,tell you what it is then completely ignore it.Kind of reminds you of how he backed Bronson while he continued to get hammered.

  9. TR

    As a not too distant contending team is slowly coming together for the Reds, it would be a shame if Bryan Price is the manager come opening day 2018.

  10. Jeff Morris

    There was the same debate years ago, with Stubbs, as there was with Hamilton. Dusty said Stubbs was very valuable in CF and “saved runs” for the Reds, even though he couldn’t hit worth anything, and seemingly striked out most of the time. Stubbs ended up playing for multiple teams, without sticking anywhere with any team. Billy Ham doesn’t strike out as much, but does hit weak grounders and pop flys, and should not be batting leadoff, of course…everybody in the world gets that, except Price, and it looks like the GM…Dick W as well.

    • kmartin

      In 2010, his first full year with the Reds, Stubbs hit down in the lineup and hit 22 home runs. I remember how excited I was about his future. Then the following year he was moved to the lead off spot because of his great speed and floundered for the rest of his career.

  11. cfd3000

    Nice start from Mahle given debut jitters. I did say in the game thread that Duvall is going to need some rest and his recent performance suggests that is overdue. How about two or three in a row off with the off day? Winker (if healthy) and Ervin both need to play. Hamilton could stand a break too. Just as the starting pitching picture is looking a tiny bit brighter the starting eight is looking a little ragged. Sigh… Go Reds!

    • james garrett

      I agree 100% but neither of us get a vote.It was obvious yesterday that Joey wasn’t going to get anything to hit and Adam’s bat is slow right now.Hurdle and the rest of the world could see it but again we don’t count.I thought in the ninth it would have been a good time to pinch hit for Billy and of course he swings at the first pitch and dribbles it about 20 feet back to the pitcher who rushes in to pick it up.Sad to watch such a display every game.Great to see Mahle compete today and his future looks bright.Hope we see him every 5th day the rest of the year.

      • jazzmanbbfan

        “The future’s so bright I gotta wear shades.” I was favorably impressed with Mahle’s overall composure and his postgame comments where it was clear he knew what went wrong. In his case I’m also confident that he will fix it.

  12. jazzmanbbfan

    Who is that person(s) that would be a solid analytical manager? I’m guessing most managers don’t think that much differently than Price and no, I’m not advocating that the Reds keep him. No one has even speculated who might be out there that would be appreciably different in style (line-up, other in-game decisions) than Price or most “baseball” people.

    • da bear

      Jazzman just look to the organizations that use more analytics. Cubs, Red Sox (leftovers from the current Cubbie GM), Astros, A’s….most organizations have made the switch in more aggressive fashion than the late adopter Reds.

      • jazzmanbbfan

        Finally thank you for a couple of names. Cash is employed as a manager but McEwing might be interesting based on his bio anyway. Never heard of Todd Greene so I will need to look him up. I’m just hoping, if Price is let go, that they do a more thorough vetting of multiple potential candidates. And if they hire Riggleman or DeShields I may have to remove all sharp objects from my home.

  13. J

    Given that Price doesn’t spend a single minute thinking about who should be leading off and getting the most at-bats, one might assume he’s using the extra time to think about who should be hitting behind Votto in the upcoming game. But one would obviously be wrong about that. What DOES this man spend his time doing when he isn’t sitting in the dugout giving the bunt sign?

    • J

      Price has made zero attempts to see how another guy would perform hitting cleanup for even a few games, just as he’s made zero attempts to see how another player would do in the leadoff spot. He pays no attention to who’s hot and who’s cold, who’s nursing an injury, who the opposing starter is, or seemingly anything else. His thought process is “Hamilton, Cozart, Votto, and Duvall are playing today, so those are my first four hitters.” He has lots of talented hitters to choose from, but he’s made it clear that doesn’t spend time thinking about such things.

    • IndyRedMan

      Well if he gave the 150 lb stringbean and the diabetic a day off once in a while then maybe they might be more effective? Everyone is physically and mentally worn down at this point but its really an issue w/Billy and Duvall. Duvall has hit some HRs in the 2nd half but his average has fell way off.

      I agree with you on Price overall….nobody is going .500 with the Reds pitching issues, but SD is 2.5 games ahead of the Reds and they have absolutely nothing….besides a bunch of games w/LA, Arizona, and Colorado. Price needs to go!

      • da bear

        Excellent point. Talent wise Reds are far far more talented than the Padres. Despite facing a much tougher schedule, the Padres have outperformed the Reds.

        Someone managed to turn Reed and Stephenson who started okay in the bullpen into messups either via neglect or putting them in difficult situations to succeed. The same could be said with respect to Cingrani. Someone left Winker and Ervin early on to rot on the bench…. Someone couldn’t spot when Cozart, Feldman, Schebler were playing hurt which exacerbated their problems, and doesn’t recognize Duvall and BH need more rest than most players.

  14. OklaRed

    Three out of four seem appropriate as top four

    • J

      Every single game, no matter what? Even if someone else has been a much better hitter for the last few weeks and strikes out far less often? That makes no difference?