The Cincinnati Reds will host the Detroit Tigers this evening at 6:10pm ET for the final exhibition game before Opening Day on Friday night at Great American Ballpark between the two teams. Just like the game on Tuesday, you can follow along at Reds.com, MLB.tv, and listen in the Cincinnati area on 700 WLW. Hopefully the weather plays nice – there’s a chance for some thunderstorms in the area as the evening progresses (Boo! Hiss!).
Detroit Tigers vs Cincinnati Reds Lineups
|1||Niko Goodrum – SS||Phillip Ervin – LF|
|2||Jonathan Schoop – 2B||Josh VanMeter – 1B|
|3||Miguel Cabrera – 1B||Eugenio Suarez – 3B|
|4||C.J. Cron – 1B||Nick Castellanos – RF|
|5||Jeimer Candelario – 3B||Mike Moustakas – 2B|
|6||Christin Stewart – LF||Matt Davidson – DH|
|7||Victor Reyes – RF||Nick Senzel – CF|
|8||Grayson Greiner – C||Curt Casali – C|
|9||JaCoby Jones – CF||Freddy Galvis – SS|
|SP||Michael Fulmer||José De León|
Josh VanMeter is in the lineup for Joey Votto, who is fine. David Bell mentioned earlier today in his meeting with the press that VanMeter was among a few guys who may enter the game today early on. Seems that he’s just going to get the start instead.
The Starting Pitchers
Cincinnati – José De León
The biggest thing with regards to José De León is that he’s got the best facial hair game on the team and that it’s not particularly close. I mean, seriously, LOOK AT THIS:
What’s up! ?? pic.twitter.com/WtDX18Nm8P
— Jose De León (@JDL_87) July 19, 2020
When it comes to the actual pitching side of things, well – let’s dive on in. The 27-year-old right-handed pitcher is still rookie eligible despite pitching in parts of three seasons in the Majors. He’s only thrown 23.2 innings in his big league career between 2016, 2017, and 2019. Last season he threw 4.0 innings for Tampa Bay, striking out seven batters with three walks and giving up just one earned run.
In 2019 most of his season was spent in Triple-A Durham with the Rays organization. He made 13 starts and four relief appearances for the Bulls, posting a 3.51 ERA in 51.1 innings with 27 walks and 73 strikeouts. It was his first season back on the mound after undergoing Tommy John surgery in the spring of 2018. His velocity wasn’t quite all of the way back to where it once was, but he was reportedly throwing harder this spring than he has been in a while. Keep an eye on the radar readings tonight. He’ll also mix in a very good change up. In the past he’s also thrown both a slider in the low 80’s and a curveball in the mid-70’s.
Detroit – Michael Fulmer
The 2016 American League Rookie of the year and a 2017 American League All-Star, Michael Fulmer has a career ERA of 3.81 over three seasons in the big leagues. But the right-handed starter missed all of the 2019 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery last spring.
Before his injury, he averaged 96 MPH with his fastball, while mixing in a mid-to-upper 80’s slider, and an upper 80’s change up. Over the first two years of his career, all three pitches rated out as above-average according to Fangraphs Pitch Value metric, but in 2018 the change up was well below-average, and his fastball went from being an above-average offering to a below-average one.
Baseball News and Notes
Nick Senzel sheds weight, is faster, ready to go
Reds outfielder Nick Senzel wants to be the best center fielder in the league, and during the time since last year ended and now, he’s put in the work to try and do just that. Since baseball shut down in mid-March he’s lost 20 pounds, gotten faster, and worked on a lot of defensive things to try and get there.
Wade Miley throwing at Prasco Park
Lefty Wade Miley is staying on target for his turn in the rotation. Manager David Bell said that he was going to throw at Prasco Park today.
Where will Toronto Play?
Canada isn’t going to let the Toronto Blue Jays play in Toronto. And now the state of Pennsylvania has said no to letting the Blue Jays share PNC Park, too, which had been the plan for the last few days that everyone had been working on. Buster Olney of ESPN is reporting that they may have to be play on the road during the season.
The Blue Jays are looking at alternative options to Pittsburgh, including going to the city of each scheduled opponent and playing as the home team.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 22, 2020
Mookie Betts gets his contract
The Los Angeles Dodgers and outfielder Mookie Betts have reportedly agreed to a 12-year contract extension. Depending on who you ask, it’s worth somewhere around $350M-$380M over the span of the deal. Jeff Passan of ESPN had it at $380M over the 13 years of time with the Dodgers, which presumably includes his salary this year.
Including 2020, the new deal is expected to keep Mookie Betts in a Dodger uniform for 13 years at more than $380 million.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 22, 2020