Final R H E
Pittsburgh Pirates (4-13)
9 11 0
Cincinnati Reds (8-11)
6 12 0
W: T. Williams (1-3) L: DeSclafani (1-1)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Pittsburgh Pirates have now won 23 of the last 32 games they have played against the Cincinnati Reds after tonight’s 9-6 victory. Keep in mind that Pittsburgh has finished fourth or fifth in the National League Central Division in each of the past three seasons. For the Reds, a too-little-too-late comeback attempt was futile and left their fans, the players and the coaches feeling this way:

Cincinnati scored single runs in each of the final three innings to pull within three runs, but a 9-0 deficit after an inning and a half was too much to overcome for the home team.

We’re still looking for indications and signs that this is a good team, and so far that is definitely not the case. Small mistakes have a negative cumulative effect for a bad team, and that was the case tonight. Jesse Winker failed to hustle from third to home on a ground ball by Freddy Galvis, and the result was that Nick Senzel was tagged out at second base a split-second before Winker crossed the plate. Replay showed Winker in a jog. Had he run hard, he would have scored because the play at second was a tag play and not a force. Later in the game, both Josh VanMeter in the eighth inning and Eugenio Suarez in the ninth swung at pitches way outside the strike zone for strikeouts. Both times, had the batter not swung, it would have resulted in a base on balls and a promising rally would have been prolonged.

The Offense

Senzel batted 3-for-4, and each of his hits (a single, double and two-run homer) drove in runs. Winker raised his batting average to .347 and his OPS to 1.059 with a 2-for-4 day at the plate. Winker should be somewhere in the top three in the batting order.

The Pitching

It’s probably not a surprise if you watched the game, but Anthony DeSclafani allowed seven batted balls with an exit velocity of 100 mph or more in his two innings:

Certainly those numbers are telling, but today DeSclafani could not get the ball down in the strike zone, and he got hammered, to which the “exit velo” numbers above will attest.

Cody Reed and Michael Lorenzen combined for six innings of two-hit, one-walk relief work with five strikeouts. Hopefully, it is the beginning of a turnaround in performance for both.

The defense

Cincinnati’s defense has been largely below average for most of the season so far, so it was certainly nice to see Shogo Akiyama show that he knows what to do with the glove …

Notes Worth Noting

Of Colin Moran’s 31 career home runs, eight have come against Cincinnati …

Today was the fourth time in Anthony DeSclafani’s career he allowed as many as three home runs in a game …

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Pittsburgh Pirates vs Cincinnati Reds

Friday, August 14th, 7:10 pm ET

Chad Kuhl (2.00 ERA, 0-0) vs Sonny Gray (2.25 ERA, 3-1)

31 Responses

  1. Sliotar

    Tom wrote – “We’re still looking for indications and signs that this is a good team, and so far that is definitely not the case.”

    Nailed it, Tom. Great comment. IMO, summarizing the first 19 games in 1 sentence.

    The Reds have some above-average players and a lot of AAAA /hit-or-miss guys surrouding them.

    It is a club screaming for a few upgrades, and besides bringing Aquino and Stephenson and giving them an extended run, probably means a trade or two.

    • ClevelandRedsFan

      +500

      If you’re looking for positives:
      Winker/Senzel/Votto/Brewers

      Winker and Senzel coming along and both will be Reds for a while longer. This could be Winker’s break out year at the plate. He just needs to learn to be a more well-rounded player.

      I do think Senzel can be an All-Star CF in the next year or two if he stays healthy.

      Votto will never be the pre-2019 Votto again. But it’s good to see him rebounding a bit from last year and showing more power. Reds need him to be an above average hitter because he looks afraid of the ball in the field.

      Somehow the Reds still hold the #2 spot in the NL Central. Brewers lost again last night to the Cubbies. It’s hard to see the Cards after all this time off and replacement players win. But, St. Louis is always St. Louis. Reds could still sneake into the playoffs.

      Ok, that’s it. I’m out of optimism for today until the Reds win again.

  2. Joe

    If the Reds get to playoffs they have the starting pitching and that’s it. Offense is offensive. Just think how bad they would be without Nick. So basically offer Bauer with Votto and start the next rebuild.

    • RojoBenjy

      But the club doesn’t know how to rebuild the right way.

  3. seadog

    Barnhart says Desclafini was tipping his pitches. But, they found out too late. Really, you think

    My God this Coaching Staff is a complete train wreck. Obviously Bell is in over his head. Derek Johnson has to take some heat also.

    • TR

      Do the Reds still have a hitting coach? He seems to keep a low profile. A few years ago the Reds were not a bad hitting team when Don? Long was the hitting coach. He left when Bell took over. The Reds have a potential potent offense trio in Castellanos, Moustakas and Suarez when they’re injury free and in gear. Castellanos has led the way, but recently he seems to be trying to always hit the ball over or off the wall. Senzel and Winker are stepping up offensively which is positive.

  4. Brad

    I have watched the Reds on TV for years now, went down and spent a lot of good money at GAB, went to the caravans in the winter and I have just about reached my end. Some say its the manager, lack of effort from players, slow start. I just can’t take much more. I think its just a losing culture that they just can’t or won’t change. Why should I waste my time, energy and money on this team any more? How many more “wait til next year” or “it’s still early” can one fan take. This rebuild has taken 7 years. And they still can’t win. Somebody please tell me why I should put up with this (insert comment) of a baseball team anymore. Its just getting to painful to watch anymore.

  5. Old-school

    Winker was just bad baseball awareness. He saw the play unfold ahead of him and didn’t realize his run counted if he scored ahead of the out at second… He assumed it was like any other double play as a runner at 3b and a 6-4-3 dbp. Sprinting home from 3b doesn’t matter in a 6-4-3 double play. It does on a 3-6 tag double play. It’s not hustle. It’s baseball unawareness.

    The Reds aggressively targeted JT Realmuto after the 2018 season. They aggressively targeted Yasmani Grandal. Why? They knew catching was a weakness. Barnhart and Casali are both back up catchers. 2 backup catchers doesn’t equal a whole catcher. Stephenson is an every day catcher.

    The holes in the offense are in LF, 3B, 2b and catcher. Moose will fix 2b.
    Suarez has to fix 3b . There’s no other answer. Shogo needs more reps and is good defensively. I don’t see C fixing itself.

    OPS by position

    Winker DH/rare LF 1.059
    Castellanos RF 1.020
    Davidson occassional DH/ rare 1b .965
    Galvis SS .858
    Moose .857
    Senzel .857
    Votto 1b .764

    • scotly50

      “The holes in the offense are in LF, 3B, 2b and catcher”

      That is half the line-up. No wonder they are losing.

      • Indy Red Man

        Suarez will come around at some point. Moose will be back. Maybe this team isn’t as good as they looked on paper, but they’re still easily capable of atleast .500

        The problem is Bell. Yesterday letting Colon end the game. Disco for 9 runs today when he has 15-16 pitchers or whatever? Moe on 700 WLW used the same word I used “Inexcusable”!!! Frazier, Bell, and Moran are 1,3,4 in their lineup. It was 4-0 and these guys splits are way worse vs LHP. Reed is ready to go….lets do it! 60 game season and 4-0 isn’t much in gabp in the 2nd inning!

        Last night Bell lets Colon end the game. How many times can this team fail to get a man in from 3rd with less then 2 outs? It feels like they’re failing 80% of the time unless someone homers. Last night they were down 4-0 and had 1st/2nd nobody out with Barnhart at the plate. Why not surprise bunt then? You stay out of the doubleplay and move Farmer to 2nd base who can run a little. Instead TB fouls out and Shogo hits into a doubleplay. Shogo’s grounder gets a run in if TB sacrifices. You have to be able to score without HRs.

        I look back at Bell with Hernandez last year. He doesn’t get it. I think he has some kind of defiance mental issue disorder where he feels forced to reject what common sense and 95% of everyone else would dictate. He’s worse then Price and 5x worse then Dusty.

        Where is Scott Rolen? Would he like to manage the Reds? He was a leader and a coach on the field in some respects. Joey obviously doesn’t have the personality. Jay Bruce didn’t have it. You have to be 110% invested yourself before other players will follow your lead. Rolen had that! Molina on the Cards. Thats the kind of leader the Reds need. Bell will get them beat in the 1st round even if they squeak in.

      • RojoBenjy

        “The problem is Bell”

        Drop the mic after that.

        I’m tired of his apologists making excuses for him. The guy is scary bad. The team is in Cincinnati he’s somewhere else in his mind.

    • Jim Walker

      And the guy with the big OPS (Winker) apparently doesn’t have a clue about how to play the game except for hitting and getting on base.

  6. Indy Red Man

    4-0 game, 1 out and man on 1st, top of the 2nd, and Pittsburgh had 3 hrs and a double off the wall by the 7th hitter in the lineup.

    Frazier RHP .777 lifetime ops, LHP .654
    Bell RHP .853, LHP .730
    Moran RHP .774, LHP .630

    Does Bell not understand OPS? For that matter Miley could’ve/should’ve started vs Pittsburgh with these splits and Disco vs righty hitting KC last night.

    This is the equivalent of the NFL coach that yelled out after a TD “Hey do we have a 2 point play?” Can’t remember who it was, but thats your job to know these things beforehand and during the game.

  7. CFD3000

    Positives: Winker and Senzel at the plate, Shogo in the field, Reed and Lorenzen and Sims out of the bullpen (and yes, I’m a little surprised to be typing that).
    Negatives: DeSclafani
    Frustrating: Suarez at bat, Castellanos slumping, Votto still searching, Moustakas hurt
    Encouraging: Akiyama looking a little more comfortable at the plate, Votto not crouching so much
    Unacceptable: Winker jogging home. That was the first time I actually got mad at the Reds, ANY Red, all year. I hate that they’re underachieving. I hate that guys have been hurt, that the bats have often been quiet, the bullpen often ineffective, and Bell’s in game choices odd to worrying. And I’ll even give Winker a pass for maybe not realizing his run could count. But the lack of hustle, on a team scraping for wins, is unacceptable. He’s a major leaguer – he should have known it counted – and he has to hustle. They all do. Unacceptable.

  8. Cubano

    Is it still exciting when your hometown and most-beloved ball club makes it to the playoffs… even though the defense sucks and the offense is below league average? Is that a good FO putting a good team on the field- or are we basically riding the wave of mediocrity afforded to us by COVID. The team last year had no depth. The additions were Moose, Castellanos, and Strop. Shogo was a gamble. The core of the offense of this team sucked last year. I guess we didn’t do enough. This is not a club of all stars, and I want em to win- but man. It’s bad baseball. I still love ‘em.

  9. FreeHouse

    Josh Van Meter is definitely the teams rally killer. Gets many plate opportunities with runners on and never delivers.

    • Indy Red Man

      Its too bad because he’s had some good at-bats the last few days. I’m a JVM fan, but I can’t really support him over Farmer at this point.

  10. Melvin

    I’m sorry. Nothing personal as I have no reason to believe he’s not a good guy….but….David Bell HAS to be replaced…..NOW.

    • TR

      In my mind there’s an old sociological principle that applies here: it’s called the Peter Principle. That’s where people are promoted beyond their capability. David Bell was V.P. of Personnel for the Giants before being made Reds manager, largely due to historic family ties. Bell is a natural front office guy.

  11. Vandermint

    I didn’t see the JVM strikeout in the 8th, but Suarez in the 9th…I mean, can you even say it was way outside of the strike zone? It never got there. It barely made it to the dirt. He needed an 8 foot bat to make contact with ball 4.

    That just isn’t indicative of a physically/mentally ready big leaguer. Let him have a few days off, then pinch hit (heck, pinch run) him a time or two, and then try again.

    But this isn’t normal, and can’t be left at cleanup…

    https://cuts.diamond.mlb.com/FORGE/2020/2020-08/13/f0a0c55e-d329bb59-d01d1505-csvm-diamondx64-asset_1280x720_59_4000K.mp4

  12. Steven Ross

    We’re still looking for indications and signs that this is a good team, and so far that is definitely not the case. Small mistakes have a negative cumulative effect for a bad team, and that was the case tonight.

    If the Reds lose 3 outta 4 to the Buccos (George Grande sighting) or dare I say, worse, it’s not too late to make what’s looking like an obvious managerial change. We have too much talent to be this bad.

    • greenmtred

      I don’t really know whether Bell should be replaced or not, but looking at the performance of the players, it seems clear that if they were producing at the level we (mostly) all expected, the Reds would be a winning team, despite odd managerial decisions. If you believe Bell is responsible for Suarez, Votto, et al not hitting, then blame him for the whole mess, but I disagree. Experienced professional hitters ought to–and have in past–deliver regardless of who is making out the lineup card.

  13. JB

    What this team needs is a vocal leader. One that will stand up and yell and call player meetings. Votto isnt the type nor was Dunn, Bruce or even Griffey Jr. This team has no urgency. People like Mouse, Castellanos or Bauer need to tell these guys they stink. They are the 3 that need to change the culture.

    • jessecuster44

      Bring in Greg Vaughn and have him manage.

      • JB

        He was the guy I was thinking of when I thought about vocal leaders.

  14. Cubano

    Iglesias and Galvis are both .5 WAR guys according to Fangraphs, 158 WRC+ for Iglesias , 129 WRC+ for Galvis.

    Iglesias has been immaculate on the field, and is batting .383 with an OBP at .400. He also has hustle. Meanwhile, Galvis has been spiking throws, flubbing simple plays… I have seen people here on this website say he was supposed to be functionally “the same” as Iglesias- maybe even better because he has more pop.

    I don’t get the sense that front office really watched these guys play. Galvis has always been a solid but unexciting player. Iglesias has a spark and energy to his play that the stats don’t always capture.

    • Jimbo44chi

      You are sooo right. Out of all the moves the Red’s made over the last year, this was by far the dumbest. YOu had a All star glove man out there who proved he could hit, and hit in the clutch. A great teammate and a spark. He would have been happy to sign a deal with the Reds, but noo, you trade him away. Bad move. I like the move for Castellanos, and will have to wait and see if Moustakous ever gets healthy, but so far, not so good.

  15. Roger Garrett

    Nick.Moose,Shogo and Strop are the only established major leaguers the Reds added.Two of them are hurt and one is coming over from Japan and already from the get go was tagged as a platoon guy.Minus Nick’s performance its the same team as last year and if not for him we would have a worse record.Its the same team as last year lead by the same manager and still doing the same things.Another way I always look at things is how many of our starting 8 actually start some where else?Anybody come up with anybody.Not me.Look around what could the Reds get in return for one or even two of these players in a trade.The only tradeable pieces we have even combined with other players is on the pitching side of things.The Reds have a losing culture which will not go away until those that accept it go away.We talk on here about their prospects and well that’s all that’s going to happen because we won’t see any of them until they reach 24 or 25 years old but yet we watch guys like well you can fill in the blanks that are older that nobody else wants.Again just go around the diamond and tell me who would want what we have.

  16. ClevelandRedsFan

    As others on this blog have said here in the last few days, why not Disco on Wednesday and Miley last night.

    Disco faces the mostly right-handed Royals’ lineup. Miley the mostly left-handed Pirates lineup.

    Lefties crush Disco. Bell already changed up his order?

    Reds might have won the last two if he uses common sense.

  17. TR

    Over the last few years, the Reds and Bengals have similar diminished records against the Pirates and Steelers.