Following the loss to Cleveland on Tuesday night, Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell announced some changes to the rotation. Everyone knew that the team didn’t have a starter able to go on a normal set days of rest for Thursday because of the postponements and doubleheader on Sunday. But rather than Luis Castillo being listed as the probable on Wednesday – which would put him on his regular schedule – the team game notes listed TBA. We now know why that was. Tejay Antone will make his first big league start tonight as he takes on the Indians in Cleveland.

Following Tejay Antone in Cleveland on Thursday will be Luis Castillo. Trevor Bauer, Anthony DeSclafani, and Sonny Gray will pitch the three games against the Milwaukee Brewers up in Wisconsin from Friday through Sunday before the Reds get an off day on Monday.

For Tejay Antone, he says he’s ready to give the team anything they need, but he’s ready for a full start, too.

“I’ll do anything for this team, whatever role they need me, but I’m very excited to start,” said Antone. “During quarantine, they (the Reds) asked me to get up to 5 innings. So I threw 5 innings, 100 pitches in quarantine – to the same hitter over and over – but yeah, I’m built up and ready to go.”

The right-handed pitcher only has one appearance in the Major Leagues – a 1-hit, 4.1 inning relief appearance of Wade Miley on July 27th. Antone struck out five batters in the game on 69 pitches with just one walk and a solo homer allowed. Almost all of his games in the minor leagues have come as a starting pitcher. He’s made 109 starts since being drafted in 2014 and just two relief appearances. One came in 2014 as he followed up a rehabbing pitcher and the other came last season in long relief right before the All-Star break.

Things for the rest of the rotation set up to to where Castillo, Bauer, DeSclafani, and Gray lead into the off day on Monday. Then, if the team wanted to, they could skip the #5 spot in the rotation, and pick back up with Castillo on Tuesday the 11th and move forward there. After Tyler Mahle’s start on Tuesday night against Cleveland, maybe they would like to get him out there again – but the option is on the table to get Luis Castillo a start on the 11th and the 16th (if they skip Mahle and then pitch him on the 15th) before an off day on the 17th.

While there are not going to be any possible weather postponements in Milwaukee because they play in a dome, in 2020 that’s not the only reason your game could be postponed. Still, the Reds may be moving their rotation around a bit to try and best maximize how things play out for the top of the rotation and to try and get the most out of Sonny Gray, Luis Castillo, and Trevor Bauer. Time will tell if the planning works out or not.

35 Responses

  1. Gonzo Reds

    I like it. Antone deserved a look in this spot after his strong spring and great relief appearance last week. With him and Mahle both pitching well and our need for another lefty in the pen… I see Wade Miley as an option at RP when he comes back until he builds his innings back up and shows he should be starting material.

    Thanks Doug, got my picture linked to my account now. May be hard to see but includes a Red Stockings hat I purchased at GABP last year, a Get Pete Into the Hall Of Fame face mask (which I’m sure you love), and a 60 feet social distancing pitcher/catcher shirt.

    • Doug Gray

      Whoa whoa whoa…..

      I was not prepared for a new (gr)avatar! Welcome to the club.

      • Mark Moore

        I just redid my gravatar as well. Easily done once I figured out where to go to do it.

    • RedsFan11

      like the shirt! need to get my gravatar set up next

      • Gonzo Reds

        Thanks got it at CincyShirts, have to order online mostly since I’m down in FL. Another that I have and was wearing when I got on tv last year for a post game show was SNL Farley saying “We play in a ballpark down by the river!” They’ve got one now that has a picture of Barnhart in his catching gear with caption “We’re going to win the whole tucking thing!” Good stuff LOL!

      • Gonzo Reds

        p.s. Doug you should hit that website up for ads for your page.

  2. Tomn

    Antone and Mahle have both looked really good. Our SP is excellent as long as they can stay healthy. I’d rather see Castillo get an extra days rest and give Mahle / Antone a start. Helps Castillo stay strong.

    Last night’s loss was another come from ahead pain. I don’t understand Bell’s reluctance to use Garrett. Seemed it was a prime spot for him.

    • Grand Salami

      The Garrett question is fair. I wonder if his reduced velo has made Bell a little anxious.

      Last night I looked like a Righty was the better call in the bottom of the 7th because they were past the switch hitters.

      • VaRedsFan

        Most likely it’s Garrett’s performance over the the last 3-4 months that he has pitched in real games.

  3. CFD3000

    Except for the injured Miley start, the rotation has been really good so far, perhaps even better than expected. And that includes Mahle last night. David Bell will need to figure out who is reliable out of the pen, and who is not. And there are a few guys who need to get involved in The offense, starting with Suarez (glimmer of hope last night), Winker, Ervin, and even Moustakas and Akiyama. Castellanos has been all world, and Votto and Senzel are looking solid, but otherwise the offense is on the struggle bus. The good news is that for most guys there’s nowhere but up.

    After tonight’s game the season is 20% gone. You read that right. Time to sort out the bullpen and half the offense. I’m excited to see how Antone looks tonight. Go Reds!

  4. Mark

    I believe its time to start looking at Garcia at SS, can he really be any worse than Galvis? How about T.Stephenson or Casali used as the DH? Outfield should be Aquino, Senzel, and Castellanos. Shogo is a no show so far. Why is Winker so bad has he just lost it??

    • Sean D

      I mean 25-30 at bats not sure I would say he’s lost it. Something to note: Career against righties for winker he has a nearly .900 OPS carried by OBP which is even more valuable. I think it’s pretty clear winker can bang but he definitely isn’t off to a fast start. Still, 25-30 at bats is significant in this short season although I’m not sure if Aquino is any better, he hasn’t looked great overall

      • Michael Martin

        So Aquino is a much better fielder and base runner than Winker. Winker is on the field for one thing – hitting.

    • JayTheRed

      I don’t think Shogo is a no show so far. He has had some key walks and hits and even a home run too.

      A bit steep to say he has not done anything to help this team.

  5. Chris Holbert

    Senzel is starting to figure it out in CF, and looking good so far at the plate. With Garcia coming, probably in 2021, or sooner?, I guess someone may have known a little bit about what they were doing not trading for Lindor. A healthy Senzel in CF and Garcia at SS for the next few years, looks a lot better up the middle then, ?? in CF and Lindor at SS for 1 year.

    • Mark

      I think they might ride with Galvis for now during this next 40% of the season but if this team fades at some point over the next 40% then I would strongly consider Garcia for the last 20-25 games at SS to get him ready for 2021.

    • Sean D

      Senzel was crazy underrated just cause his rookie year wasn’t awesome but he still has all the talent in the world combined with great skills at the plate.

    • jon

      #2 overall pick hitting .280 with no power is looking good?

  6. Mark Moore

    I’m good with this shuffle. We need consistency to continue from the SP crew as a foundation. Then we need to actually start HITTING other than a Pair-o-Nicks doing it.

    • Grand Salami

      I think Casali needs to see more PT. He was absolutely smoking the ball when we needed him. But since Tucker’s return he’s only gotten one appearance. The difference in offensive output this year from that position was noticeable.

      • Gonzo Reds

        If you saw Tucker gunning down runners that’s why he’s in there and not Casali but I’m fine with Casali at DH as long as we have Stephenson up. Farmer is really only an emergency catcher now that he’s proclaimed himself to be a SS. 🙂

        Speaking of gunning down runners, the one positive about rain delays for me is seeing some of the interviews they run. If you live in OH and get FS Ohio you’ve probably seen all of them but for me down in FL I haven’t. Really enjoyed the interview with my all time fav player Johnny Bench. Him throwing shade on the 70’s Dodgers was priceless and loved his stories like when he threw out Lou Brock three times in the same game.

  7. ClevelandRedsFan

    Galvis is right about where we all expected. On the year, his OPS is .793, which is pretty solid for a shortstop.

    That’s only trailing the Nicks, the Moose, the Votto.

    • Cubano

      I’m sad to see his fielding has been pretty bad this year.

      • Sean D

        It definitely has not, he has made one error in the field and one bad throw. He has definitely made some outstanding plays

      • Old-school

        Everyone needs to clean up the D and all can. Votto, Galvis Suarez have had costly errors. Senzel and Castellanos had the communication.

        All is fixable.

    • JayTheRed

      Galvis has done a fair job so far.. Hitting for some power, and he has a few nice defensive plays too. Yes he has had a bad play or two also but overall I am content with what he has provided. As listed above he has produced at a rate of about what we expected. Not every player is going to be a superstar on your team.

  8. Tom Mitsoff

    I share the sentiment of others here that Galvis has been disappointing. At bat, he’s about what was expected. Defensively I expected much more than what we’ve seen in the first 11 games. So far he’s been cross-your-fingers on both fielding and throwing.

    • Hanawi

      Not sure how disappointed one can be in a guy the Blue Jays gave away for free. League average is probably the ceiling but I didn’t expect that from him. It was always the weakest spot in the lineup coming into the season.

  9. VaRedsFan

    “I’ll do anything for this team, whatever role they need me, but I’m very excited to start,” said Antone. “During quarantine, they (the Reds) asked me to get up to 5 innings. So I threw 5 innings, 100 pitches in quarantine – to the same hitter over and over – but yeah, I’m built up and ready to go.”

    Doesn’t this statement kind of debunk the myth that the pitchers couldn’t hit the mound running once the season restarted? No need to build innings up, because the pitchers were doing this during the shutdown.

    No need to pull effective pitchers after 6 or 7 innings or sub 110 pitches, because arm-wise, they are in midseason form, without the mileage of in-season innings.

    • Doug Gray

      No, it doesn’t, because not everyone was doing it. Some guys weren’t in a place that made it really possible to do it in the way that was actually needed (Antone, though, lived where there was a high end baseball facility that he had access to).

      • VaRedsFan

        If starters weren’t required to do this, once a plan was in place then it’s an epic fail. Is there a list of who did and who didn’t? I’m thinking all pitchers prepared similarly to Antone, just based on the fact that they are professionals, and take great care of their body when preparing for a season.

      • Old-school

        Sonny Gray in his interview basically said Derek Johnson got on him and said you better put the work in or your not going deep in games when we start. Gray seemed to say if it weren’t for Johnson calling him out,. He wouldn’t be where he is now.

  10. Roger Garrett

    We should not expect our pen to hold every 1 or 2 run lead when they come in the game because sometimes a guy has it and sometimes he doesn’t.I said this at the beginning of the year that its a sprint and not a marathon so what happens when a guys struggles?Games have been and will be lost while guys try to work things out on the mound and at the plate and over 162 games you usually will get whats on the back of their card.Players should not be expected to get to work things out on the field nor should a manager allow them to in a 60 game season.At this current rate we could be 10 games out after 25 games while guys are still working things out.Maybe a day off helps Eugenio and Wink and Galvis and Shogo and others and who knows the guys that replace them may actually helps us win a game like Colon did over the weekend.Time to shake some things up.We have to try to stay close and if we can sneak in to the post season we have a good chance with our starters in a short series.

    • JayTheRed

      Couldn’t agree more. Yes it’s a short season but there are things that are going to happen. So many people need to stop expecting players to be perfect. Just cause Suarez hit a ton of bombs last year does not mean that is how he will play every day this year. I was happy to see the homer Yesterday though.

      There are so many variables that occur during a game that can change the whole output. Errors, infield hits, walks, pitching in general. There days when I pitched in High School or in Summer leagues that I couldn’t get my fastball over the plate for the life of me for some reason. Maybe someone is a tad sore or they don’t get the right slot spot for their pitches every pitch. Mahle was a good example of this the first 2 innings he was struggling with control but he kept battling and found his groove for the rest of his start. Sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way.

      Same thing for hitters One guy they may clobber and the next pitcher they can’t touch.

      So Like it was said above quit expecting everyone to be perfect.