After trailing 7-0 after six innings, the Cincinnati Reds (2-3) came all the way back to tie the Toronto Blue Jays (1-5), only to lose in the bottom of the tenth inning in the middle game of a three-game series at Rogers Centre in Toronto.
That was the result today as Strat-O-Matic games of Glen Head, N.Y., continued its announced plan to simulate the entire 2020 Major League Baseball season on a day-by-day basis for as long as actual game play is on hold.
Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:
Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance. Learn more below!
In the bottom of the tenth inning, Toronto’s Travis Shaw led off with a single against Amir Garrett. One out later, Joe Panik’s single sent Shaw to third. Manager David Bell brought in Raisel Iglesias to face Bo Bichette. Iglesias induced a ground ball, but shortstop Freddy Galvis was unable to cut down Shaw at the plate as he scored the winning run.
Toronto scored seven runs off Reds starter Wade Miley in the first five innings, and it appeared as though the home team was on its way to an easy win. But the Reds offense blazed back in innings seven and eight. Eight of the Reds’ 11 hits came in those two innings, including two by Shogo Akiyama. Cincinnati had no extra-base hits during the two-inning rally, but was aided by a Toronto passed ball and an error by Bichette. Akiyama, Joey Votto and Phillip Ervin had two hits apiece for the visitors.
After Miley’s shaky start, the Reds bullpen pretty much locked down the Blue Jays until the winning 10th inning rally.
Here is the box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:
C-Pinch Hit For Ervin In 9th Inning
A-Pinch Hit For Drury In 7th Inning
B-Subbed Defensively (3B) For Tellez In 8th Inning
Standings following the March 31 games:
If you have not seen it yet, please check out Wesley Jenkins’ randomized simulation initiative. This will be coming out once a week, starting on Thursday.
The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds playing the rubber match of the three-game series against Toronto on Wednesday. Right-handed pitchers Luis Castillo and Chase Anderson are scheduled to start for their respective teams.
Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:
Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance.
Strat-O-Matic has agreed to allow Redleg Nation to submit the Cincinnati Reds’ lineups for each day’s simulated game. We want all of our readers who want to participate to get involved.
Here is how it will work:
- In each wrap up of that day’s simulated game, Redleg Nation will post the opposing starting pitcher for the next game. You will know who the pitcher is and whether he is left-handed or right-handed, and you can use that information in creating a lineup for the next game, and submitting it in the comments below. “Splits” such as performance vs. left-handers or right-handers are replicated in the Strat-O-Matic game algorithm, and therefore should be considered.
- We will accept lineups from every reader who wants to submit one. The lineup that will be submitted to Strat-O-Matic each day will be the one that receives the most positive replies (in effect, “yes” votes) from readers other than the submitter. In case of ties:
- First tiebreaker: Lineup submitted by the reader who has had the fewest number of opportunities as a “manager.”
- Second tiebreaker: Lineup submitted earliest in the comment thread. (So get your lineup in “early” each day.)
- What is “early?” Redleg Nation posts these articles daily between 5 and 6 p.m. Eastern time. Strat-O-Matic’s deadline for us to submit a lineup for the next day’s game is midnight. On most days, we’ll do this before “bedtime,” which is typically between 10:30 and 11 Eastern time.
Have fun with this! If you have any questions, please post them in the comment string below.
Strat-O-Matic has been in the sports simulation business since the 1960s. A USA Today article contained this explanation:
Strat-O-Matic and other baseball simulations use statistics from the previous season to create “cards” for each player on a roster. The team managers select the batting order and the starting pitcher. From there, a series of dice rolls and calculations determines the outcome of each at-bat.
Strat-O, as it’s known to longtime players, first gained its immense popularity as a board game. The company has since expanded to a downloadable Windows version and one that’s played online. A few years ago, it introduced Baseball Daily – a new iteration that combined the player cards from the previous season with statistics from the real season being played at the same time.
Unlike many video games, the Strat-O-Matic results are based on algorithms that account for players’ actual past performance. It’s not a game played with a joystick that relies more on the skill of the person with the video game controller in his or her hand.
The simulation software will keep comprehensive statistics for all teams for the season, so we’ll be able to track year-to-date leaders in many statistical categories. Our current plan is to provide statistical leader summaries here at Redleg Nation each Sunday. You can follow the season at Strat-O-Matic.com, where they plan to post the results from each day’s schedule at 2 p.m. Eastern time.
News/Notes from around baseball
One of the things we would have during the season in the game threads was a section comprised of news and notes for the day. While there’s a lot less going on these days in the baseball world than usual for this time of year, there still are some things that are worth highlighting. When there are, we’ll be adding them to these daily simulation threads.
The 2019 playoff baseballs were “de-juiced”, sort of.
Bradford William Davis of The New York Daily News wrote about how after all season of playing with a “juiced” baseball, once the playoffs began, a new ball was put into use that wasn’t the same as the one used during the regular season. Davis spoke with both players and consulted Dr. Meredith Wills, who presented her findings at the 2020 SABR Analytics Conference earlier this year about the differences between the baseballs after examining multiples of each.
Is the #2 spot in the lineup truly the best for a teams top hitter?
Something that we’ve seen pop up over the last handful of years is that the best hitter on a team should hit second in the lineup. For about the first 130 years of baseball the best hitter almost always was thought to slide best into the #3 spot in the lineup, but that thinking changed a bit in more recent times. Once we started being able to simulate the outcomes of things a lot easier with the help of computers, the best lineups almost always had the best guy hitting second because it meant he’d get a few more trips to the plate over the course of the year, and lead to a few additional trips to the plate with a runner on for the other good hitters in your lineup.
Russell A. Carleton, better known in some circles of the internet as Pizza Cutter, took a look at whether the second spot in the lineup is indeed the best place for the teams best hitter over at Baseball Prospectus today. There’s some “gory math” within the article, but if that’s not for you, you can just skip on by it and trust that he knows what he’s talking about and read the conclusion, too. That conclusion, isn’t definitive and there’s plenty of wiggle room on it – but the final paragraph of the piece leaves us with this:
But if you want the truth about the two-spot, there it is. We need to re-think the slogan that we’ve held onto for a long time. We need to re-re-think the second spot in the lineup.