Happy May Day!  Last night the game slipped through the Reds fingers twice. They did not take advantage of having the Mets bottom starter paired against their top man, Luis Castillo. Then after the Reds finally rallied to extend the game to extra innings, their top reliever served up a victory to the Mets in short order. Tonight in game three of this series, things could to be even tougher against the top of the Mets rotation. Game time from  Citi Field is 7pm.

Starting Pitching

REDS

Anthony Desclafani gets the ball for the Reds at game’s beginning. After missing substantial portions of the last three seasons due to injuries, elbow; oblique (twice), Disco hopes 2019 is a redemption tour. So, far as might be expected, his results have been uneven through 5 starts as he shakes off the rust. The good news is that much of the carnage creating his current shakey stat line happened in 2 early starts. His last 2 starts have been very effective. RLN’s Matt Wilkes has taken a deep dive into the adjustments Disco is making. Check it out here. Matt’s bottom line is Desclafani has recovered his curveball, found a little extra oomph on his fastball and is mixing them effectively. The missing piece is his slider which he continues to work on. Thanks again Matt.

METS

Righthander Jacob deGrom starts for the Mets. deGrom is the reigning NL Cy Young winner and to boot also finished 5th in the NL MVP balloting last season. However deGrom has not pitched to form since his second start of the season on April 3. On April 16 deGrom who had TJ surgery in 2010 and surgery for an elbow nerve issue in 2016 was placed on the Injured List with a sore elbow. After much ado, a scheduled MRI was cancelled; and, he returned to the rotation on April 26. In that start he allowed 5 earned runs in 5 innings (3.36 FIP) versus the Brewers. So, it is life is a box of chocolates time for the Reds tonight. Who knows which deGrom they will get.

PITCHER 2018 FIP WHIP HR/9 BB% K%
Anthony DeSclafani 5.01 1.26 1.78 10.1% 25.7%
Jacob deGrom 3.69 1.38 1.73 8.8% 37.7%

Keep in your thoughts that both pitchers have made 5 starts. deGrom’s first two starts were brilliant with 0 earned runs allowed while inversely DeSclafani has allowed just 1 earned run in his 2 most recent starts. Definitely a box of chocolates night.

Bullpens

REDS

Despite needing to cover only 2.2 innings last night (thanks to 6.2 innings from Luis Castillo), the Reds pen is somewhat in disarray. Raisel Iglesias has worked on consecutive days throwing 50+ pitches. He almost certainly is not available tonight. Thursday being a matinee, he could be done for the series. David Hernandez worked on a third straight day Tuesday. That’s a career first for him. Count him out for tonight. The heavy lifting today would seem to fall to Michael Lorenzen and Zach Duke. Robert Stephenson, Amir Garrett and  Jared Hughes should be OK for short stints.

UPDATE: This afternoon the Reds called up Matt Bowman, a righthander, to bolster their bullpen. Phil Ervin was optioned to open the required roster spot.

METS

The Mets used 4 pitchers to cover 4.2 innings of relief. The main point here is that their closer Edwin Diaz who wasn’t available last night should be good to go tonight. However, prime setup man Jeurys Familia is almost certainly not available tonight. He has been put on the injured list. Leftie Ryan O’Rourke has been added in his stead. Two other Mets relievers also threw over 20 pitches last night and could be limited tonight. This could be a factor if deGrom turns out to be a short timer.

Lineups

           REDS            METS
1. Joey Votto (1B)
2. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
3. Jesse Winker (CF)
4. Yasiel Puig (RF)
5. Derek Dietrich (LF)
6. Tucker Barnhart (C)
7. Jose Iglesias (SS)
8. Anthony DeSclafani (P)
9. Jose Peraza (2B)
1. Jeff McNeil (LF)
2. Peter Alonso (1B)
3. Robinson Cano (2B)
4. Michael Conforto (RF)
5. J.D. Davis (3B)
6. Brandon Nimmo (CF)
7. Amed Rosario (SS)
8. Tomas Nido (C)
9. Jacob deGrom (P)

What’s to say? Slightly interesting that Winker is in CF given the size of CF at Citi. With Nick Senzel’s pending call up, who knows what implications that may or may not have moving forward.

News and Notes

Note to Reds pitchers: KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR THIS GUY TONIGHT!

No, it is not our imaginations, the baseball really is flying over the fences at a record rate. Kudos to Reds pitchers for largely not helping hitters contribute to the HR Boom.

Nick Senzel has been told he is being called up to the Reds. Doug Gray has the latest at RedsMinorLeagues.com.

And here is an overall look at the Reds outfield situation right here at RLN from the keyboard of Jeff Gangloff.

Final Thoughts

Last night was a tough loss for the Reds. The offense squandered a golden opportunity with Luis Castillo pitching well versus the bottom of the Mets rotation. Along the way, the team’s hitting star was involved in what appeared to be another inexplicable TOOTBLAN at a critical point. Then after the offense finally awoke enough to at least extend the game to extra innings, the team’s other ace, closer Raisel Iglesias, promptly coughed it back up.

Alas if this were hockey, at least the Reds would have garnered the loser’s standings point for extending the game beyond regulation. But it isn’t; and, they don’t. So, we’re left wishing for a (potential) star, Nick Senzel, to arrive (Friday, right? That’s really for sure?!?) and make things right.   Sometimes it is hard to hang in with this crew. But today is a new game in a new month. I’m here writing. You’re here reading. Thanks for your time. And all together now, GO REDS!!!

 

Data and stats via Baseball Reference, Fangraphs, and MLB.com