The Cincinnati Reds try for their seventh consecutive win this afternoon versus the Milwaukee Brewers.  The Brewers who have now dropped 6 of their last 7 games need a win to have a chance to split the current series. Game time at Miller Park is 4:10 EDT

STARTING PITCHERS

The Reds Luis Castillo makes the start against  Jhoulys Chacin in a battle of right handed pitchers.

REDS

Luis Castillo appears to be on his way to becoming an All Star for the the first of what the Reds and their fans hope will be many times. In 2019 we have seen Castillo harness his electric stuff and display an emerging sense of maturity on the mound. His change up reminds those old enough of Mario Soto’s.  It dives and backs up in addition to offering a sharp change for pace from his nearly 100 MPH fastball.

Castillo has experienced only one truly poor outing this season. It came a month ago versus the Brewers also at Miller Park.  In that game he lasted only 2.2 innings while allowing 4 earned runs. Tonight he will try to even the score with the Brew Crew.

BREWERS

Jhoulys Chacin has bounced around MLB since breaking in as a highly regarded prospect with the Rockies in 2009. Injuries and inconsistency kept him from ever reaching the heights projected for him.  He has made 243 MLB appearances of which 215 have been starts. His career ERA/FIP numbers are 3.95/4.16 with 16.3 fWAR earned. Those are mid rotation grinder numbers.  Chacin’s 2.4 fWAR in 2018 made the season one of his best in quite a while. He has not been nearly as effective this year; but much of the damage is down to 2 very poor starts.

Today Chacin makes his second start since returning from a trip the Injured List due to a lower back strain.

Chacin has faced the Reds once in 2019. On April 2, he held the Reds to 2 runs over 5.1 innings in a game won by the Brewers 4-3.

PITCHER FIP WHIP HR/9 BB% K%
Louis Castillo 3.53 1.11 0.72 12.4% 29.0%
Jhoulys Chacin 5.75 1.52 1.72 11.4% 18.1%

Savor the pitcher Luis Castillo will become if he can get that BB rate down and turn those pitches into additional innings pitched!

BULLPENS

In total more than 400 pitches, yes 400,  were thrown in Friday’s game. The two bullpens combined threw 198 of them.

The Reds bullpen was tasked to cover 4.2 innings Friday.  It took 5 relievers to get the job done. Four of them threw at least 20 pitches. Topping the list were Matt Bowman and Michael Lorenzen at 27 and 25 pitches respectively. The good news is Raisel Iglesias threw only 5 pitches and should be available today. Otherwise expect to see mostly Jared Hughes, Wandy Peralta, Zach Duke and Robert Stephenson today with  possibly short spot duty from anyone else.

The Brewers pen had to cover 4 innings Friday and used 3 relievers to get the job done.  Junior Guerra and Corbin Burnes both topped 40 pitches and figure to be unavailable today. Jeremy Jeffress threw 17 pitches to complete an inning. He could probably cover an inning today. Once again Josh Hader did not appear.

LINEUPS

        REDS         BREWERS
1. Jesse Winker (LF)
2. Joey Votto (1B)
3. Eugenio Suarez (3B)
4. Derek Dietrich (2B)
5. Yasiel Puig (RF)
6. Jose Iglesias (SS)
7. Jose Peraza (CF)
8. Tucker Barnhart (C)
9. Luis Castillo (P)
1. Yasmani Grandal (C)
2. Christian Yelich (RF)
3. Mike Moustakas (2B)
4. Lorenzo Cain (CF)
5. Eric Thames (1B)
6. Orlando Arcia (SS)
7. Travis Shaw (3B)
8. Jhoulys Chacin (P)
9. Ben Gamel (LF)

Nick Senzel is sitting out after an early exit Friday due to a migraine headache. Let’s hope that is the extent of his issue and we see him subbed in today or back in the lineup tomorrow.

NEWS AND NOTES

Nick Senzel isn’t in the lineup, but Cincinnati Enquirer writer Bobby Nightengale says that David Bell has said he will be available off of the bench today.

That “other” Iglesias, Jose, has turned into quite an acquisition for the Reds

Speaking of astute off season acquisitions, Derek Dietrich had a record setting night of a different sort Friday

I wholeheartedly agree with this and hope  Lance is right about the length of Nick Senzel’s Reds tenure

FINAL THOUGHTS

As Doug Gray wrote in the RLN recap of Friday’s game, it was a long and ugly trek; but, the Reds emerged victorious. Unlike earlier in the season, the Reds did not fold when an early lead evaporated. Time and again they held the line, took the walk (or HBP) and got the timely hit. At least for now the Reds are grabbing what may have been their last chance to be competitive in 2019.  The joy is back in watching them play baseball. Let’s hope the team can keep it there for 3 more months and just maybe, even a bit a beyond.  GO REDS!!!


Stats and data via MLB.com, Fangraphs and Baseball Reference