The Reds got the misfortune of facing the Washington Nationals to start 2018, and three starters who finished in the top six a season ago in the National League Cy Young voting.  It does not make it much easier to swallow getting swept to start the year, but it is important to consider that fact. The Reds have yet to take a lead in 27 innings in 2018, and the small amount of optimism that surrounded this team is starting to fade.

The Reds will face Tyler Chatwood tomorrow. He had a 4.69 ERA a season ago. 159 games still to go.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (0-3) 5 7 0
Washington Nationals (3-0) 6 8 0
W: Gonzalez (1-0) L: Romano (0-1) S: Doolittle (2)
FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Biggest Play of the Game

According to Fangraphs WPA statistic (winning percentage added), the most important play of the game was Adam Duvall grounding into a double play with no outs and the bases loaded in the 8th inning. The Reds scored one run, and still trail 5-3. That play decreased the Reds chances of winning by 22.4% (from 36.0% to 13.5%).

Player of the Game

Adam Eaton: 2 for 4, 1 HR, 2 RBI. 

Eaton absolutely destroyed the Reds in this series. He went 8 for 13 with 2 homers. Bryce Harper also had 2 homers today, so you could have put him here if you really want to.

Positives

Sal Romano surrendered a two run bomb to the second batter of the game, and ended up throwing 34 pitches in the first inning. He settled down pretty well after that, and recorded a quality start. After seeing what the Nationals are capable of yesterday, 3 runs over 6.0 innings isn’t all that bad.

Phillip Gosselin hit a 2-run home run off Nationals closer Sean Doolittle. Gosselin had been double-switched with Gennett earlier in the game. He had a grand total of 6 career home runs in 509 at-bats.

When you have as a bad of a weekend as the Reds did, sometimes you just need to marvel at Joey Votto.

Negatives

The Reds loaded the bases with no outs, down 5-2 in the 8th inning. Adam Duvall grounded into a double play, and the Reds got just one run. The Reds also loaded the bases with no outs yesterday, and failed to score at all.

Jose Peraza has started the season 0 for 12 with 5 strikeouts. He made 13 outs in 12 trips to the plate (hat tip to Patrick Jeter). Senzel can not get here soon enough.

Yovani Gallardo gave up a two run bomb in his Reds debut just as they had cut the Nationals lead to 3-1.

Raisel Iglesias gave up a solo home run to Bryce Harper. It didn’t seem like a big deal at the time, but it ended up being the difference in the game.

The Reds offense just might be really terrible vs LHP. Votto and Suarez are probably the only good hitters vs LHP, although Votto is a little less powerful against southpaws. This could be something that could really be an issue until Nick Senzel establishes himself in the lineup.

Not so random thoughts……..

I couldn’t be more thrilled that the Reds are finally embracing some platoons. However, Billy Hamilton’s OBP vs LHP over the last two years is .252, and his OBP vs RHP is .330. I don’t exactly get why you bench him yesterday vs RHP and start him today vs LHP. Hamilton made the final out of the game with the Reds down 1 run against…..a left-handed pitcher.

Up Next:

Reds vs Cubs
Monday, 4:10 PM
TV: FOX Sports Ohio, MLB Network, MLB.tv free game of the day
Tyler Mahle vs Tyler Chatwood