The Cincinnati Reds (11-15) head to Wisconsin to take on the Milwaukee Brewers (11-15) tonight, looking to get something going after a deflating series in St. Louis. Cincinnati sends arguably the best pitcher in baseball this season to the mound in Trevor Bauer. The Brewers will counter with left-handed pitcher Brett Anderson.

Starting Lineups

Cincinnati Reds

Milwaukee Brewers

Joey Votto – 1B Avisaíl García – CF
Nick Castellanos – RF Christian Yelich – LF
Eugenio Suárez – 3B Keston Hiura – DH
Matt Davidson – DH Justin Smoak – 1B
Mike Moustakas – 2B Ryan Braun – RF
Phillip Ervin – CF Omar Narváez – C
Jesse Winker – LF Luis Urías – 2B
Curt Casali – C Eric Sogard – 3B
Kyle Farmer – SS Orlando Arcia – SS
Trevor Bauer – SP Brett Anderson – SP

Cincinnati’s going with a more right-handed lineup than usual today with lefty Brett Anderson on the mound for Milwaukee. The offense has been in a real funk since returning to play in Kansas City on Wednesday. Perhaps facing a lefty who doesn’t miss bats is what they need to get things going in the right direction.

Starting Pitchers

Pitcher IP ERA WHIP BB% K%
Trevor Bauer 26.1 0.68 0.57 7.4% 43.6%
Brett Anderson 17.0 3.71 1.35 5.3% 18.4%
Links: Trevor Bauer’s Stats | Brett Anderson’s Stats

Trevor Bauer

You can make a strong argument that Trevor Bauer has been the best pitcher in baseball so far in 2020. He doesn’t have as many starts as some other guys, but he’s been absolutely dominant through the four starts that he has made for the Cincinnati Reds this season.

2020 Splits

Split PA H 2B 3B HR BB% K% AVG OBP SLG
RHH 46 2 0 0 0 10.9% 39.1% .049 .152 .049
LHH 48 6 0 0 2 4.2% 47.9% .133 .188 .267

No one has really had success in 2020 against Trevor Bauer, but lefties have had a little more success. They’ve hit as many home runs, two, as right-handed hitters have total hits against him. Left-handed hitters, however, have walked half as often and struck out nearly half of the time they’ve stepped to the plate.

Pitch Usage in 2020

4-Seam 2-Seam Slider Change Curve Cutter
Velo 93.5 95.1 80.8 83.4 79.1 84.5
Usage 56% 1% 12% 1% 12% 19%

While there are six pitches that Trevor Bauer does go to, it’s mostly just four pitches as the sinker and change up are going to show up about once per game.

Brett Anderson

Left-handed pitcher Brett Anderson’s profile fits in more with a pitcher from the 1980’s than from 2020. He doesn’t strike guys out, he doesn’t throw hard, and he gets a lot of ground balls. But he’s been effective in doing so throughout his career over the last decade plus.

2019 Splits

Split PA H 2B 3B HR BB% K% AVG OBP SLG
vsRHH 551 143 27 2 17 6.7% 12.9% .280 .329 .441
vsLHH 192 38 6 0 3 6.3% 9.9% .221 .280 .308

Despite already having four starts under his belt in 2020, Brett Anderson has only had 11 total encounters with left-handed hitters this season. As such, we’re going to look at his 2019 splits as the information is likely more accurate given the sample size. The strikeout rate in 2019 was the lowest of his career, and it’s up this season so far – but even being up, it’s still well below-average. Anderson simply doesn’t put hitters away via the strikeout. That said, while lefties make plenty of contact, they don’t do much of anything with that contact because it’s overwhelmingly contact on the ground. Lefties had a 68% ground ball rate against Anderson in 2019, and for his entire career it’s only a tad lower (66.2%).

Pitch Usage in 2020

4-Seam 2-Seam Slider Change Curve Cutter
Velo 90.2 89.8 81.8 82.6 75.9 87.4
Usage 1% 43% 9% 24% 9% 14%

Brett Anderson doesn’t miss a ton of bats by today’s standards. What he does do, though, is get a bunch of ground balls. He does that with a good sinker, and a solid array of secondary offerings – throwing six total pitches. There isn’t a ton of breaking stuff, with only 18% of the pitches he throws being either a slider or curve.

When and Where

  • Game time: 8:10pm ET
  • Where: Miller Park, Milwaukee
  • Watch: Fox Sports Ohio, MLB.tv
  • Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
  • Forecast: It’s in a dome so it doesn’t matter.

NL Central Standings

Team Wins Losses GB
Cubs 17 10
Cardinals 9 8 3.0
Reds 11 15 5.5
Brewers 11 15 5.5
Pirates 7 17 8.5

News and Notes

Cody Reed designated for assignment, Robert Stephenson activated

Reds DFA Cody Reed, activate Robert Stephenson from IL

Joey Votto and the opposite field

Joel Luckhaupt shared this stat on twitter this afternoon, and while we’re only 26 games into the season, it really is something else.

Updating the playoff odds

Entering the series against the Milwaukee Brewers tonight, Fangraphs has the Cincinnati Reds playoff odds at 46.2%. Sitting at 11-15, they are 5.5 games out of the division lead, but just 2.5 back of the final wild card spot.

71 Responses

  1. Jack

    Off topic but do you know if the Reds or any of the individual players use virtual reality training? I was reading Andrew Baggarly and Grant Brisbee’s article about Yastrzemski’s emergence as a star at the age of 30 and he credits his use of the WinVR baseball program for improvement in his ability to recognize pitches.

  2. Sliotar

    Reds are the worst in away batting average of all 30 teams (.172), 27th in wRC+ (71), per FanGraphs

    Coors Field East (GABP) doing its silent damage again … making some guys look more dangerous in home games than if they played in other places.

    Feels like there have been a lot of 8-5 type games between these 2 in Miller Park. Jay Bruce used to own that place, I feel like.

    8 runs and Bauer being Bauer may (hopefully) get this team right.

  3. John C.

    I watched a little bit of the Cardinal broadcast of one of the games this weekend and they had a bit of a discussion about Votto. In admitting that Votto has been one of the best hitters of his generation there is always the discussion of his approach and his continued desire to walk verses driving in runs. They question why he was hitting leadoff and making $25M annually, saying that that certainly wasn’t what the Reds expected when they gave him that contract. They concluded that the Reds have basically given in to his wishes allowing him to become the hitter that he is today.

    It is pitiful watching the Votto of today. He has become strikeout resistant which isn’t bad on the surface but his swings look more and more like Billy Hamilton just trying to hit the ball when he swings instead of trying to drive the ball. If he has another bad game he is looking at driving the interstate half way through this abbreviated season. Please don’t talk about OBP. We all know that is good, but he isn’t scoring runs and that is usually the end result of a good OBP. His lack of speed is a killer from the leadoff position.

    I cannot imagine he returns next year unless there is a radical improvement over the last 35 games. Its not quite as bad as watching the end of Willie Mayes’ career but I hope it doesn’t come to that.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      I’m rapidly coming to the realization that we’re getting to the point with Votto that the Angels are with Pujols and the Tigers are with Cabrera. What the heck do you do with a guy who is making $20+ million per year and can’t produce on a daily basis any longer?

    • Tom Mitsoff

      I’m rapidly coming to the realization that we’re getting to the point with Votto that the Angels are with Pujols and the Tigers are with Cabrera. What the heck do you do with a guy who is making $20+ million per year and can’t produce on a daily basis any longer?

      • TR

        I’ve never understood the huge Votto contract that pays multi-millions through age 39 when most players are on the downhill curve after age 32.

      • Jefferson Green

        These guys got these contracts because that is what various teams were willing to pay, so the Reds had to pay that to keep Votto. Tough decisions await every team that signs players this way because they will decline at some point. The Cards would be having to make them if Pujols had signed their offer instead of going to LA, and the odds are that the Phillies will be in this place in ten years with Harper, just to name two examples. It is indeed a sad way for stars to go out.

    • Jefferson Green

      Votto is getting paid for what he did 3-7 years ago. That’s how MLB contracts work. And if you compare Votto to peers of similar age, you see similar declines. Bat speed slows with age, and Father Time always prevails in the long run. Watching the game tonight reminds me of that: the Brewers would love for Ryan Brain to be producing what Votto is producing. And yes, I know that Votto is a shell of his former self and not producing well, but OBP is probably the best we can expect from him from here on out, no matter what he does with his stance and swing adjustments.

      • TR

        I’m aware how major league contracts work and I was aware then that a guaranteed contract through age 39 was excessive.

  4. Mark Moore

    Let’s see how fired up Bauer is tonight.

    Nice single by Nick C … too bad it came to naught.

  5. docproc

    Hey Eugenio, how about taking that outside pitch to right field instead of rolling over on it into a double play?

    And how ’bout a little more hustle to first base, too?

    This is getting so old.

    • Roger Garrett

      Its a joke to play the game this way and not be held accountable by anybody.How on earth can ownership not see this and do something about it.Eugenio needs to set and now.

  6. Sliotar

    Yelich turned his season around the first time he played the Reds … continuing on now.

    Already qualified for membership in Reds Killer Hall of Shame.

  7. VaRedsFan

    Note to Votto: The Yelich hit to the opposite field is how you hit it the other way. (Reference to Doug’s note in the pre-cap).

  8. Old-school

    Joey votto

    .205/.333/349/.682

    WRC+ diving WAR 0 and headed below replacement.

    Bad first baseman. Slow. Leading off.

    He does nothing above average now and lots way below average.

  9. Mark Moore

    Yellich … oh how I wish he were wearing Red.

    • VaRedsFan

      I believe the Marlins wanted Senzel as the centerpiece of that deal. I was excited…Trigger not pulled. Then the Marlins wanted Trammell as the centerpiece of a Realmutto trade….trigger not pulled. Now here we sit, as we let an MVP and an All Star go elsewhere. They eventually got Bauer with Trammell.

  10. Roger Garrett

    This game could already be over.

  11. Old-school

    Moustakis is 1 year away from 2019 Votto and 2 years away from 2020 Votto.

    • Sliotar

      Moustakas was given 2 more years than he should have been given.

      Would have love for local media to press Reds (fat chance) on who else was offering a 4-year deal to an over-30 infielder.

      Moustakas’s agent should call Bauer up …. might fleece the Reds again.

      • Old-school

        @sliotar where are you on the catching situation? I’d bring up Stephenson and play 80% now.

      • Sliotar

        Casali coming up this inning … might be a big series for him.

        Barnhart is Ol’ Tuck in the locker room, team union rep, blah, blah, blah … feels like he is a fixture.

        Got to get some some juice in the lineup … as Doug wrote earlier, Votto, Suarez, Moustakas are going nowhere.

      • Old-school

        Good point. Tucker is player rep. Casali is pitchers catcher and legit manager material . Stephenson is going nowhere.

        The Reds will just lose again.

  12. docproc

    Moose hit into a DP that looked like a left-handed version of Suarez’s DP in the first.

    Did I mention that this is getting old?

  13. Roger Garrett

    Moose got what he wanted.Nick signed with an opt out after 1 year I believe so he got what he wanted.I doubt seriously if any other team offered or would have given the same deals.We shall see how it plays out but they didn’t come to Cincy because either thought the Reds were better then the teams they left.I don’t blame either player.

    • RedAlert

      Just do not understand why Stephenson does not get a look – these 2 catchers are anemic hitters – just mind boggling – par for the course for this organization . Ridiculous

      • RedAlert

        They just don’t give young players opportunities like other organizations do – someone pointed this out previously also . Seem to keep these guys in minors way too long . Service time bullcrap.

    • Roger Garrett

      Never moved once he got on.Please blow this team up and replace it with a high school team.

      • Indy Red Man

        $82 mil to send Joey away. Not gonna happen(((
        The thing is, his ceiling now is about .230 with 15 hrs. By 2022, its unlikely he could hit .200 at this rate. His defense is horrendous. Somehow he’s an ancient 37 or whatever. Is there a Homer for Kemp deal they could make somewhere? This team is hopeless moving forward with that anchor weighing them down.

  14. Old-school

    Winker, Castellanos and who else???.

    Hope Senzel is OK but he’s my leadoff hitter going forward when he’s back.

  15. Roger Garrett

    Oh sure Nick and Bauer can’t wait to resign with the Reds.May even give them a discount.See everybody tomorrow.

  16. Mark Moore

    Well, goodnight, friends. Can’t watch anymore of this when we don’t know how to hit. Trevor can’t do it all by himself.

  17. Old-school

    Reds offense now NEEDS to wake up.to save the season… 4 th place and 5 under now staring ahead.

  18. RedAlert

    Just as well be 10-0. Compete disaster of a team.

  19. VaRedsFan

    That was Smoaked. Didn’t Bauer learn in the 1st AB not to throw him a fastball?

  20. RedAlert

    Keep playing Suárez Bell and batting him in the top 4 – stupidity at its finest

  21. Old-school

    It’s important to note Castellanos hustled his tail fir infield single … Only for another Suarez lazy double play.

    Votto and Suarez are destroying this season. $35 million for negative productivity.

    • Old-school

      Prorated of course. But small sample size is actually bigger fail/ $.

  22. Indy Red Man

    Blow it up. Mel Rojas Jr. is a triple crown threat in the Korean league at .359 with 29 hrs. He’s 30. Why not? Thames came from Korea and give Milw a decent boost for a few years.

    Honestly I don’t blame Bell that much and management tried. We looked pretty good on paper, but it just doesn’t work.

    • DX

      Bell has one job and that is to win games. He isn’t doing that and should be fired.

  23. VaRedsFan

    The NL record for GIDP for one team in a game is 7.
    We still have a chance.

  24. Jack

    The lowest team average in baseball history is .207 in 1888, can the Reds do it? At least it would be something to remember.

    • Jack

      Reds currently sitting at .206, they are going for it.

  25. RedAlert

    Amazingly bad team – just unbelievable . These guys have quit . Play with absolutely no heart .

    • RedAlert

      Please make me eat that comment …I would gladly

    • TR

      Change needed. Bring in the crew from Mason Praso.

  26. Old-school

    Phil Ervin is hitting .097 in a role he’s supposedly good at. Maybe that 6-6 in Coors field against a home lefty pitcher with a 10 ERA didn’t project. Perhaps Aristides Aquino should get his roster spot. He’s a good outfielder and has elite power

  27. Indy Red Man

    Cashed Under 4.5 (barely) thru 5…..only way to follow this team

    • Sliotar

      Congrats.

      If only Ohio’s politicians would stop bickering over 2 bills, and whether the casino or the lottery commission runs it …

  28. Frankie Tomatoes

    Only need three more solo home runs to get ahead in this game.

    • TR

      Excellent definition of the Red’s offense.

  29. Redgoggles

    I wonder what % of the runs we score are via the HR, and how that ranks? Love the HR, but hate waiting for it. Really undisciplined offense. Was hoping Votto and Shogo would be high OBP guys, but their struggles plus the entire lineups inability to hit to the opposite field makes for too many easy outs/innings.

  30. Old-school

    Reds analytics team are applying minor league regular stats handedness…. With twice a week mlb handedness. Phil Ervin played every day in the minors… Now he’s playing interrupted 3x a week and 5 at bats… This program is wrong. You pick the best players and they play… You don’t platoon based on minor league stats when they played every day then. … And then bench them in mlb and expect the numbers to work in your favor at mlb pitching .

  31. Jack

    Antone is one of the few who put a smile on my face.

    • TR

      Will Antone go to the starting staff and Miley to the late game bullpen staff?

  32. Redgoggles

    Our young studs of yesteryear……Iggy (as starter), Lorenzen (starter), Reed (starter), Cingrani (starter), Finnegan, Romano, Garett (starter). I remember thinking they probably all won’t pan out, but surely 3-4 of them will. Kind of like thinking the offense this year surely won’t be worse than last year.

    • Redgoggles

      Oh, yeah. Robert Stevenson too. 3-4 decent relievers now, if you squint really hard. No starters.

  33. Indy Red Man

    BABIP is a poor indicator of the Reds hitting struggles imo. I don’t really like babip anyway, but I get the gist of it.

    The problem is they hit into shifts because they don’t change their approach with 2 strikes. Brantley and the guy (Tom?) were talking about the Reds “bad luck” in St. Louis the other night. How we lined out a few times while the Cards scored a few runs on floaters. Thats not luck. They fought off pitches and looped them in while we’re just hacking away into their shift. We have a bunch of slugs speed wise so doubleplays are always a rally killer.

    5 for 26 (.192) and thats an improvement over St. Louis((

    • VaRedsFan

      Totally agree about babip. If I tap weakly to the SS 10 straight times, was I unlucky that none of them were hits. It’s all about quality of contact, the babip has a small place in the stats world.

  34. AVinVA

    Pretty telling comment made by Jim Day – Farmer saying Reds dugout needs more energy. There are ways to infuse energy into a team which everyone has been mentioning but they aren’t willing to do it and have opted for using the same approach that isn’t working. Frustrating.

    • RedAlert

      Takes on the personality of their manager as well – no sense of urgency whatsoever . ZERO

  35. RedAlert

    5 games under with this talent – let that sink in . When will this front office wake up and make some meaningful changes !!???? This ain’t working !!!!!! Got to start with you know who ….

  36. Roger Garrett

    Five hits,two solo homers(keep swinging for the fences please) two walks and another I believe in this lineup loss.Can’t wait till tomorrow to watch to see if Joey goes below 200,to see if Suarez can swing harder and how soon the Brewers can score a couple of runs to put the game away.Hoping they can do it before 830 so I can catch the second half of an NCIS rerun.Please sell sell sell and lets starts over.

  37. Erik the Red

    It does not matter who plays. This season is getting old quick. This organization has no fire. Not sure we will be relevant in the next five years.