The Cincinnati Reds (30-29) fell to the Minnesota Twins (36-23) on Saturday night. In the final tune up start for Luis Castillo he wasn’t as sharp as he had been recently, and in a big game for the Twins as they play for the American League Central division, their offense went off – hitting eight doubles along the way to a 7-3 victory.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (30-29)
3 7 0
Minnesota Twins (36-23)
7 10 0
W: Clippard (2-1) L: Castillo (4-6)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

The Cincinnati Reds offense took no time off to begin the game. Shogo Akiyama led off with a single and then stole second base. Jesse Winker followed up with a walk to bring Joey Votto up to the plate and he came through with an RBI double, bringing Akiyama in from second. Mike Moustakas would cap the inning off with a sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.

The offense went quiet for a while from there. Brian Goodwin got things rolling again in the top of the 7th with a leadoff single. Kyle Farmer followed with a single of his own to put two men on. After Curt Casali took a questionable strike three, Nick Castellanos came through as a pinch hitter for Shogo Akiyama and drove in a run with a single of his own. That cut into the Twins lead, making it 5-3. That was the last time the Reds would score, though.

The Pitching

Luis Castillo took the mound to start the game, knowing that this would be his final tune up start before pitching on Thursday in the playoffs. After being handed a 2-0 lead in the top of the 1st, Castillo gave one of those runs back in the bottom half of the inning. He’d give up two more runs in the 3rd inning, and another in the 4th. That was all he’d take the mound for after throwing 77 pitches and picking up four strikeouts in 4.0 innings.

Anthony DeSclafani would take over in the bottom of the 5th and he’d give up three runs over 3.0 innings of relief on four hits and a walk. Robert Stephenson pitched a hitless 8th inning, hitting a batter along the way.

Notes Worth Noting

Tomorrow will be the final game of the regular season for the Cincinnati Reds. They will begin the playoffs on Wednesday with Trevor Bauer on the mound against a yet to be known opponent.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Minnesota Twins

Sunday September 27th, 3:10pm ET

Sonny Gray (5-3, 3.73 ERA) vs Rich Hill (2-2, 3.27 ERA)

24 Responses

  1. Steve Schoenbaechler

    Well, every other team seemingly did the job tonight but us.

    So, now, from what I see, if everything stays the same, we get the 7th seed.

    If we can win, then we force the Cards to win and Marlins to win. If they don’t win, we get the 5 seed. If the Marlins win/Cards lose, we get the 6th seed.

    I still say go for the higher seed tomorrow.

    If anyone is wondering, I wasn’t aware of this, but all teams start at nearly the same time tomorrow, to keep teams from tanking.

    • Steve Schoenbaechler

      Then, what was the deal with those games the Cards missed? Wasn’t it “if” those missing games could keep them out of the playoffs, then the games will be made up? Then, if the games only meant seeding, then the league will go with winning percentage?

      For, if it’s the former, I can’t help thinking the Cards could literally go from “not making the playoffs” to a 6th or even 5th seed. It would suck if that would happen. But, that could happen any season, I guess. Teams have missed games at the end of the season previously.

    • 2020ball

      Not sure Lamet needs TJ, I’m cant find anything that confirms that. All I can find are optimistic reports that he might start game 1. I was watching the game he left, he basically took himself out of the game without any real warning as to why. Didnt look serious to me.

  2. Don

    Reds looked to be on an emotional hangover after a big night of celebrating and they were playing one of the best teams in MLB which took advantage of the situation.

    Cards loss locks the Cubs in as NL Central division winners so Cubs have nothing to play for on Sunday.
    White Sox playing to win the division pr could fall to #5 if the Indians Win.

    Twins are playing for AL Central and AL #2 seed on on Sunday
    If Twins and Blue Jays win and Yankees lose then Blue Jays #6 and Yankees fall to #7 and will be the Twins WC opponent.
    If the Twins lose to Reds and Sox Win, Indians Lose and Yankees win the Twins will be #4 and the Yankees #5.
    Twins just seem to not be able to avoid the Yankees in the playoffs.

    These playoff seeding race in the AL central are more weird as than NL Central.

    Embrace the weird of 2020.

    • Mark Moore

      What I can’t figure out is what would be the trigger for the WLB’s going to Detroit for the DH on Monday. The home field advantage for the NL top four for the Wednesday-Friday games is set. There is no “home field advantage” in the bubbles. At that point they are playing for a spot and the Phillies or Brewers are hoping they fall flat … is that right?

      • Don

        working on those scenarios now. Will post soon. Assuming Giants are going to lose to Padres tonight.

  3. Mark Moore

    Padres still picking us up 3-0 needing only 9 more outs against the Giants. That cements us at #7 and that’s fine with me if #6 can’t happen. Regardless, we’re in and playing Wednesday. Tomorrow is for pride and a chance for a winning 2020 campaign.

    • VaRedsFan

      FWIW…I fear Atlanta more than San Diego.
      Although you get the Dodgers in R2 if they happen to beat SD, but on a neutral.

  4. Klugo

    Under the circumstances, I dont really mind Castillo getting a stinker out of the way now. Those happen with young pitchers. The good ones bounce back with a focus that leads to a renewed sharpness. Let’s call it humbling.

  5. Mark Moore

    Trouble brewing in the bottom of the 8th in San Fran … 😮

    • Mark Moore

      Escaped with the lead. Need 3 more outs without SF scoring to cement our #7 slot tonight.

      • Mark Moore

        Tommy Pham probably just put it out of reach. Padres up 5-2 in the 9th with nobody out. That got back the 2 SF scored.

        I think I can safely go to bed now and stop watching West Coast games!!

  6. Don

    Assuming Padres hang on in the 9th to beat the Giants (Padres up 6-2 in 9th)

    Cards only play Monday of it impacts whom will make the playoffs.

    Sunday Scenarios
    Cards Win (30-28) (0.5172 win%), clinches NL Central #2
    Reds WC#1 – win (0.5166 win%) or loss (0.500 win%)
    Giants WC#2 with a win
    Phillies WC#2 with Phillies win and Giant Loss
    Brewers WC#2 with Phillies and Giants both lose

    Scenario #2
    If Brewers beat the Cards on Sunday, Reds and Giants lose and Phillies win.
    Reds and Brewers 30-30, Cards 29-29, Phillies and Giants 29-31
    If Cards were to play and lose both on Monday, they finish 29-31.
    Cards have tiebreaker over Giants
    Cards have tiebreaker over Phillies
    Result = Reds, Brewers and Cards all in playoffs so the Cards do not play Monday as only seeding is impacted.
    Seeding in this scenario
    All three NL Central teams are 10-10 against each other
    Reds and Cards are both 21-19 in division, Brewers are 20-20
    Cards are 6-4 vs Reds
    Cards NL Division #2
    Reds WC #1
    Brewers WC #2

    Scenario #3
    If Brewers beat the Cards on Sunday and Reds lose. Giants win.
    Brewers and Giants wins eliminate Phillies
    Reds and Brewers 30-30 and Cards 29-29 and Giants 30-30 the Cards have to play on Monday as based on Cards wins and loses Monday will determine if Cards or Giants make the playoffs.
    Cards lose both Monday to finish 29-31
    Result = Reds NL Central #2, Brewers WC#1, Giants WC#2

    Cards win 1st game, will finish season 30-29
    Result = Cards NL Central #2, Reds WC#1, Brewers WC#2

    Cards lose 1st game and win second game to finish 30-30
    Result = Cards NL Central #2, Reds WC#1, Brewers WC#2

    Working on Cards loss and Reds Win scenarios

  7. Don

    Padres beat the Giants, Reds locked in at worst #7


    If Reds win and Brewers beat the Cards on Sunday and Giants win.
    Brewers and Giants wins eliminate Phillies

    Reds 31-29, Brewers 30-30, Cards 29-29 and Giants 30-30
    Cards have to play on Monday as based on Cards wins and loses Monday will determine if Cards or Giants make the playoffs.

    Cards lose both Monday to finish 29-31
    Result = Reds NL Central #2, Brewers WC#1, Giants WC#2

    Cards win 1st game, will finish season 30-29
    My understanding of the rule is that this elominates the Ginats so the 2nd game as only impacts seeding and wuil not be played
    Result = Reds NL Central #2 (31 wins, .516 win%), Cards WC#1 (0.508 win%), Brewers WC#2 (0.500)

    Cards lose 1st game and win second game to finish 30-30
    Result = Reds NL Central #2, Brewers WC#1, Cards WC #2

    • Don

      Sorry about the mistyping in above note:

      My understanding of the rule is that this eliminates the Giants so the 2nd game as only impacts seeding and will not be played

  8. GreatRedLegsFan

    It’s never too early to start thinking about next season’s roster, so I wonder what approach will FO take regarding the following positions: 1) Catcher – Will they hand duties to Stephenson/Barnhart or will they look into FA, for example, JT Realmuto? 2) SS – Major question mark here as Garcia is still far from hitting at ML level, with no one else close in the pipeline and Galvis set to become a FA. 3) OF – Assuming Castellanos stays, plus Akiyama, all other current players are question marks: Winker is a poor defender and runner, more suited for DH duties, Senzel is yet to prove he can perform over a full season, Aquino has not been able to adjust to ML pitching and Goodwin has shown very little in his short stint and may be non-tendered.

    • CallowayPost

      And this is their opportunity to play baseball when it counts, and sink or swim, become known players or try again next year, these games are going to build some strong bonds…

      Plus a title, or any achievement, in the post season, and now you have players coming back next year who firmly believe that this is a strong group, and they’re going build each other up, because each will get a chance to see what the players under the jersey can do to step up.

      Those achievements alone are what keep the bands together, so to speak.

  9. Tomn

    Did anyone else think that Castillo was being squeezed big time tonight? No close calls went for him that he’s almost always gets. Then later in the game it seemed the ump relaxed his zone.

    • JB

      Squeezed big time. He didnt give him anything on bottom of the zone or the sides. When an ump does that it basically takes alot away of his change up. Man, umps have been really bad this year.

      • Tomn

        Glad to hear someone else thought the same. I think that accounted for his outing and the Reds loss. Who was that ump? An AL ump maybe. Awful

    • RojoBenjy

      A couple mentions on the game thread. It’s a shame when the umpires insert themselves into the game narrative like that.

  10. Jimbo44 CN

    Did anyone hear what the deal was with Goodwin and the visit by Bell in the outfield last night? He came out of the game next inning. Just looked odd to me as he did not seem hurt.