Nick Castellanos’ seventh-inning, two-out single scored Phillip Ervin with what turned out to be the winning run as the Cincinnati Reds (6-7) defeated the Philadelphia Phillies (5-9) by a score of 2-1 in the second game of a four-game series at Great American Ball Park.
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!
Neil Walker’s second-inning home run against Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani gave the sim Phillies the early lead. Both teams’ pitching staffs held the opposition scoreless until the bottom of the seventh.
Tucker Barnhart doubled with one out, and Jesse Winker was called upon to pinch-hit for reliever Amir Garrett. The sim Phillies manager then removed starter Aaron Nola in favor of lefthanded reliever Ranger Suarez. Sim Reds manager Peter Onte countered by sending up righthanded batter Phillip Ervin to hit for Winker. Ervin made the strategy pay off by hitting a double of his own, scoring Barnhart to tie the game. Shogo Akiyama followed with an infield hit, and Nick Senzel was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Righthanded reliever Deolis Guerra was brought on to face Castellanos, who foiled the strategy with a single to score Ervin and give the Reds the 2-1 lead.
The Phillies threatened in both of the final innings. Michael Lorenzen struck out Bryce Harper with the tying run on second to end the top of the eighth inning. Then in the ninth, Raisel Iglesias allowed the first two batters to reach, but escaped trouble when Didi Gregorius grounded out to end the game.
“We won because we did the little things right,” Strat-O-Matic quoted winning manager Peter Onte as saying. “This is why we practice things over and over and over, so when we get in close games we don’t make mistakes.”
The Reds stand two and a half games behind the first-place Cubs and Cardinals in the NL Central, and are tied with the Brewers in the division basement.
Here is the box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:
C-Pinch Hit For Guerra In 8th Inning
E-Pinch Ran For Bruce In 9th Inning
A-Pinch Hit For Garrett In 7th Inning
B-Pinch Hit For Winker In 7th Inning
D-Subbed Defensively (2B) For Moustakas In 9th Inning
Standings following the April 10 games:
The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds and Phillies playing game three of the four-game series Saturday. The intriguing pitching matchup has Luis Castillo starting for the Reds, and right hander Zach Wheeler — who the Reds reportedly pursued strongly during free agency — starting for the Phils.
Due to his two-game winning streak as sim manager, Peter Onte will have first priority for submitting the lineup for Saturday’s matchup.
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. Here are the “managerial records” of our Redleg Nation participants to date:
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.
Over at RedsMinorLeagues.com Doug Gray took a look back at the Reds prospect that he believed in the most over the years. That prospect was Robert Stephenson. He talked about why he believed it, and then what happened that changed all of that from that point moving forward. Go check it out.
Amir Garrett is back, defending the Reds in MLB The Show
After winning the initial MLB players “The Show” tournament, Amir Garrett is back representing the Cincinnati Reds in an expanded tournament.
Games start tonight. More details: https://t.co/pMXYrMqTAe
Here are the 30 players: pic.twitter.com/i2ISX393s6
— MLB Communications (@MLB_PR) April 10, 2020
Great short-tenures in recent Reds history
Wick Terrell put together a list of some of the better “short-tenured” Reds careers in recent history over at Red Reporter on Wednesday. The list includes Shin-Soo Choo and Kevin Mitchell. It also includes Skip Schumaker, and you’re going to want to read his section.