A three-run 11th inning rally and some clutch relief pitching by Michael Lorenzen propelled the Cincinnati Reds (24-24) to a hard-fought 4-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians (32-18) at Progressive Field.
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!
With the score tied at 1-1 after 10 full innings, Joey Votto reached Indians right-hander Adam Cimber for his second triple of the season. Tucker Barnhart followed with a run-scoring single to give the sim Reds a lead they would not relinquish. But the offensive uprising continued, and it would be needed as it turned out. Centerfielder Travis Jankowski followed with a single, his third hit of the game. Cleveland right-hander Dominic Leone was brought on and retired Mark Payton on a popup. However, Phillip Ervin continued his hot hitting with a single that scored Barnhardt, and an error on the play by left fielder Domingo Santana allowed Jankowski to score all the way from first base with two outs.
Robert Stephenson struck out Carlos Santana to start the bottom of the 11th, but then things got dicey. Jake Bauers reached on an error by Votto, and then advanced to second and third base on consecutive Stephenson wild pitches. Domingo Santana walked, and that was all for Stephenson. Lorenzen came on and allowed a single to Jordan Luplow that scored Bauers to make the score 4-2. Cesar Hernandez then singled, loading the bases. But Lorenzen reached back for something extra and struck out Roberto Perez and Delino DeShields Jr. (son of Reds first base coach Delino DeShields Sr.) to end the game with the tying runs in scoring position.
Ervin was the Reds’ offensive star, reaching base four times in his six plate appearances. His seventh-inning solo home run accounted for the Reds’ 1-0 lead after eight and a half innings. Starting pitcher Wade Miley led the hurlers with perhaps his best start of the season, shutting out the Indians over 6.1 innings. He would have been in line for the victory had Raisel Iglesias not allowed the Indians to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth and send the game to extra innings. In the past 20 innings, sim Reds pitchers have allowed two earned runs.
Freddy Galvis had a 14-game hitting streak broken, but his glove showed up today. He was credited with two web gems at shortstop, both resulting in double plays.
The victory marked the sim Reds’ first time back at the .500 mark since they were 2-2. Their current four-game winning streak is their longest of the sim season, and Cincinnati has won seven of its past eight. The Reds and Indians finish their brief two-game series Wednesday in a game that marks the return of Shogo Akiyama from the 10-day disabled list. Akiyama is one of the top offensive players in the Strat-O-Matic sim league:
- first in batting average against righthanded pitchers, .381
- sixth in overall batting average, .343
- tied for sixth in doubles, 15
- 12th in on-base-percentage, .397
- seventh in runs created per 27 outs, 9.4
- 10th in “total average” (bases / outs), 1.011
- OPS of .959
In order to add him back to the roster, one of the following players who have options remaining must be sent to the minors. We’re asking the Redleg Nation community to vote in the comments below on which one of these players should be sent down to make room for Akiyama:
- Matt Bowman
- Luis Castillo
- Kyle Farmer
- Raisel Iglesias
- Travis Jankowski
- Michael Lorenzen
- Mark Payton
- Nick Senzel
- Josh VanMeter
- Jesse Winker
First-place St. Louis won its second consecutive game to maintain the NL Central lead. Milwaukee, after losing three straight to Cincinnati, ended its losing streak to maintain its half-game edge on the Reds, who enter Wednesday’s play two and a half out of first place.
Here is the sim Reds box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:
A-Pinch Hit For Winker In 7th Inning
B-Pinch Ran For Reyes In 9th Inning
C-Pinch Hit For Mercado In 11th Inning
Standings following the May 19 games:
The 2020 schedule as currently constituted has the Reds finishing the very brief series and road trip in Cleveland Wednesday. Luis Castillo will pitch for the sim Reds, while right-hander Adam Plutko pitches for the Indians.
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.
Reds crushing it on social media
There isn’t organized baseball happening right now, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t players out there doing their thing and having a good time.
First, let’s take a look at the video that Cincinnati outfielder Aristides Aquino posted to his social media.
When I hear that MLB season is coming?#PUNISHER ??? pic.twitter.com/DFwzMt9ASW
— Aristides Aquino (@Aristide_Aquino) May 18, 2020
But it’s not just Aquino out there having a good time. Reds prospect Hunter Greene, who is now 13 months removed from Tommy John surgery, lit up the social media world with this clip that’s been viewed nearly half a million times on twitter.
Watch ya lips!??? @Tesla @SportsCenter @BleacherReport @Complex pic.twitter.com/brvn9lWppN
— Hunter Greene (@HunterGreene17) May 18, 2020
Only one side is ever asked to make sacrifices for the Greater Good
At Beyond the Box Score this morning, Shawn Brody takes a look at how it’s the owners who should be taking a cut, not the players.
In this war between suppliers of labor and owners of capital, only one side is ever asked to make sacrifices for the Greater Good. The players never signed up for this, but the owners did. They chose greater leverage, exposure, etc. for the prospect of greater returns — which they kept for themselves. Now that this model has blown up in their face, it is not on the players to bail them out. The owners made this bed, they know what comes next. It is about (expletive deleted) time the owners of capital realize the downside of risk, something they knew was there the entire time. If the profits are theirs, so too should be the losses. If the losses are for everyone, so too should be the profits.
Jim Maloney on The Jim Day Podcast
Jim Day was joined by Jim Maloney on the most recent episode of his podcast. Maloney joined the Reds in 1960 as a 20-year-old and spent 11 seasons with the Reds before he was traded to the Angels after the 1970 season. He only pitched one year for California before being released. In total he went 134-84 with a 3.19 ERA in 1849 innings during his playing career. Now go listen to the podcast.
Great pitcher, great person, great storyteller all wrapped into one! You won’t believe what players got away with in Jim Maloney’s day. Join us for an entertaining conversation on the latest episode of the Pod.https://t.co/JFgqkdcZ34 #Reds #MLB https://t.co/3Gqj8jVPic
— Jim Day (@JimDayTV) May 18, 2020
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.
Batting and pitching player stats by team
Today’s exciting victory extended Jon Davis’ record as commenter/manager to 4-0, as he has set the lineups for each of the victories in the sim Reds four-game win streak. Therefore, he will have priority for Wednesday’s lineup, and he will try to guide the Reds over .500 for the first time all season. 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.
Hard to send a guy down after a 3-5 day but that is what needs to occur.
Jankowski to the minor for Akiyama.
If Jon does not post a lineup here is mine.
Leave Payton in the lineup and put Akiyama in left against another right handed pitcher.
1. Payton – CF
2. Akiyama– LF
3. Ervin – RF
4. Moustakas – 2B
5. Winker – DH
6. Suarez – 3B
7. Votto – 1B
8. Barnhart – C
9. Galvis – SS
Senzel goes down.
I agree Senzel goes down. Has to be an OF and Peyton/Janikowski/Winker all above .300 so far while Senzel sitting at .200.
Tempted to send down Iggy actually LOL. Send a message to him! Bowman stays, he’s been good so far.
Back to .500 finally!
Glad to see that we are finally putting together a nice streak! Well done so far Jon, keep it up!
I vote for Senzel to be dropped to the minors, but do want to be informed if he starts producing well there (if that is able to be checked). Because his ceiling is so high, he may warrant another callup if he can hit for a good batting average in the future, and especially if someone else starts slumping.
To my knowledge, there is no minor league version of the simulation by Strat-O-Matic. Players in the sim “minors” will be much like many of the players in the real minors this season — apparently not playing.
Not sure why to send Senzel down now.
He is hitting 254 with a 333 OBP in May.
He has been started in CF 2 times in May, when Strat-O-Matic subbed him into games, 3 times has been at 2B and once as defense replacement for Winker in the CF and as DH today. Rest of time as a one AB pinch hitter.
Based on where Strat-O-Matic has him playing he may be more of a right handed hitting 2nd basemen instead of an outfielder on his card.
If Senzel is sent down then Ervin is the only right handed hitting outfielder (possibly Lorenzen) on the active roster with 4 lefties Outfielders until Castellanos is back on the 27th. Hopefully there are very few lefty pitchers for the next week for the Reds to face.
First, let’s deal with roster moves, after much thought and research I vote to send Jankowski down for Akiyama. The rest of the discussed roster moves I am very torn about but I also vote to Send Farmer down & call Blandino up. I agree with BK that Senzel and Vanmeter should be given a little more time but are on a short leash, and given the Dietrich situation I would say Vanmeter has a little more slack than Senzel. I feel that Blandino will provide better defense at SS plus he will provide better AVG & OBP than Farmer sure he has less pop in his bat but Farmer hasn’t been hitting anyway.
To recap I vote:
1. Jankowski optioned & Akiyama activated
2. Farmer optioned & Blandino recalled
In an effort to keep the votes somewhat orderly, please reply immediately below this comment by clicking the “Reply” button on Jon’s idea of optioning Farmer and recalling Blandino: yes or no
Well its hard to get motivated for “sim” baseball, but at least Cincy is back to .500 so there’s that.
I think Farmer needs to go down but not for Blandino so I vote no.
I am a not for optioning Farmer for Blandino
As far as the lineup the potential Farmer/Blandino move will not be a factor. This is tough my initial thoughts give me 10 guys for 8 spots, having the DH does help. The only 2 of that group that have faced Pluto before are Winker 1 for 2 with a HR and Castellanos who is 4 for 10. Plutko does have a pretty hefty split OPS goes .905 to .764 in favor of LHB. Ok I feel like Akiyama, Payton, Winker, Votto and Moustakas need to be in the lineup, then Suarez at 3B and Galvis at SS,
so now we are down to Castellanos and Ervin for the final spot. My gut is saying to go with Ervin since this is sim world and he has been performing, also this way I don’t have the Castellanos/Winker debate on who should DH. Ok Tom here is my lineup going for 5 in a row.
1. Akiyama – LF
2. Payton – CF
3. Ervin – RF
4. Winker – DH
5. Galvis – SS
6. Votto – 1B
7. Suarez – 3B
8. Moustakas – 2B
9. Barnhart – C
good lineup, get 1 game over 500
Castellanos is on the IL until Next Wednesday May 27th so he could not be in the lineup.
Yeah very true Don clearly My brain completely forgot that when I mentioned him luckily my gut must have remembered.
This looks like a lineup that could do a lot of damage in my eyes. Hopefully it performs as well as I believe it can!
I don’t want to take credit for this virtual turnaround… but ever since I accused those guys of cooking the results I’ve noticed we are playing much better. Surely a coincidence but hey it’s what I do… I do the same thing in real life, accuse the umpires of squeezing us etc. You can thank me later when we win the world series.
Well done, Aaron! 😉 We want as many of our readers as possible to be involved.
P.S. I just watched a video of Dusty Baker and Derek Loww having a feud that I never knew about because Lowe hit Votto in the back and Baker basically ordered Latos to buzz him inside… man I never knew Dusty did stuff like that… he said “Don’t mess with me or my team.” Now I love Dusty i take back every negative thing I ever said about him (which were many).
Jankowski down. Senzel stays.
Send down Jankowski
At 10:26 p.m. Eastern, the vote was Jankowski 4, Senzel 3 for the player to be optioned in favor of Akiyama.
The vote on the idea of optioning Farmer and recalling Blandino was 2 no and 1 yes.
Jon’s lineup is headed to Strat-O-Matic in hopes of a season-long five-game winning streak, and a hope that Luis Castillo finds his groove Wednesday!