Eugenio Suarez broke out of an offensive slump with three hits, including his team-leading 12th home run, and two runs batted in to lead the Cincinnati Reds (21-24) to a 9-5 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers (24-22) 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!
Porous defense contributed mightily to the defeat that snapped Milwaukee’s seven-game winning streak. Three Brewers errors resulted in five of Cincinnati’s nine runs being unearned.
The NL Central division foes played to a 5-5 standoff through five innings, but the sim Reds broke through in the bottom of the seventh inning. With one out, Freddy Galvis — promoted to the cleanup spot in the batting order by winning commenter/manager Jon Davis — tripled against Milwaukee reliever David Phelps. Milwaukee then countered with lefthander Alex Claudio to face lefthanded batters Tucker Barnhart and Mike Moustakas. Barnhart struck out, but Moustakas made the strategy backfire by clubbing his sixth home run of the season, giving the home team a lead they would not surrender.
The sim Reds tacked on two unearned runs in the eighth against Brewers lefty Brent Suter, who happens to be from Cincinnati. With two outs and two on, Galvis hit an infield single to second baseman Keston Hiura, who then kicked it for his second error of the game, allowing a run to score. Then, Suter booted a grounder hit by Barnhart, allowing another run to score and accounting for the final 9-5 margin.
Phillip Ervin joined Suarez in the three-hit club, raising his batting average to .346.
Pedro Strop was credited with the victory. Just one day after he coughed up a Reds lead late to get tagged with the defeat, he was brought on in a tie game and shut down Milwaukee in the top of the seventh.
It was a very productive day for the Reds in the NL Central standings, as all of the other teams in the division lost. Cincinnati pulled to within four games of the leading Cardinals, and within two and a half of Milwaukee and Chicago, tied for second.
Cincinnati has won four of its last five games, its best stretch of the sim season to date.
Here is the sim Reds box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:
A-Pinch Hit For Houser In 6th Inning
C-Pinch Hit For Sogard In 8th Inning
F-Pinch Hit For Suter In 9th Inning
B-Pinch Hit For Gray In 6th Inning
D-Pinch Hit For Garrett In 8th Inning
E-Pinch Ran For Casali In 8th Inning
Standings following the May 15 games:
The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds hosting the Milwaukee Brewers at Great American Ball Park Saturday for the third game of the four-game series. Trevor Bauer will pitch for the sim Reds, while lefthander Brett Anderson pitches for Milwaukee.
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.
MLB’s re-opening plan has a lot of problems
Rob Arthur breaks down Major League Baseball’s re-opening plan over at Baseball Prospectus today. He has a lot of questions still, and notes that there’s going to be risk no matter what – but that the current plan is adding an exponential caliber risk compared to the ones offered before it. You need a free account at Baseball Prospectus to read the entire article. Here’s the concluding paragraph from Arthur’s piece:
The problems here are not as easily solvable as a different revenue split. They are consequences of COVID-19’s basic biology and the highly-infectious, incredibly dangerous infections it produces. Major League Baseball may well be able to steamroll the players’ objections and continue with the plan they’ve laid out. But unless they address these issues, the season will put thousands of people at additional danger. That’s a steep price to pay for baseball.
MLBPA asks for many MLB financial documents
As a part of the collective bargaining agreement, Major League Baseball gives the Major League Baseball Players Association some financial documents. But they don’t have to open up the books to show all of their revenue and expenses. Nor do they have to claim many “baseball related” incomes as actual baseball income. With the proposed “50-50” split of revenues for 2020, the Major League Baseball Players Association has reportedly asked for far more financial documents from the owners.
Pitchers really stink at hitting
We all remember the few outliers to the “pitchers can’t hit” statement. But by and large, even the ones we remember as being good, were only good because they were pitchers, but compared to even your average hitter, weren’t. Mike Leake was a “good hitting pitcher”. Leake is a career .192 hitter with a .491 OPS. He hit .333 as a rookie, and two years later he hit .295. He’s hit .200 or less every other year of his 10-year career. Michael Lorenzen is a “good hitting pitcher”. That one is closer to the truth. Sort of. Lorenzen has some pop – he’s slugged .432 in his career. But he’s also hit .235 with a .279 on-base percentage. His 85 OPS+ in his career is very good for a pitcher. It’s also 15% worse than your league average hitter. Micah Owings – that’s actually a good hitting pitcher. He hit .283/.310/.502 in his career.
Why do I bring all of that up? Well, that would be because Ben Clemens wrote an article today at Fangraphs titled “An Encyclopedia of Pitcher-on-Pitcher Crime” where he looks at how cruel some pitchers can be to their counterparts….. by throwing them offspeed stuff. But there’s a real fun ending to the article that I won’t spoil for you. Go check it out.
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’ performance based on statistics that their statistical experts project for each player in the 2020 season. 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.