Opening Day should be an official holiday in Cincinnati, but for some reason it still isn’t. Perhaps that was for the best on this particular day as the Cardinals were up 6-0 before the second out of the game was recorded thanks to some poor defense and a rough outing for Luis Castillo. St. Louis didn’t look back, either, adding on to their lead and keeping the Reds offense just out of reach.

Final R H E
St. Louis Cardinals (1-0)
11 10 0
Cincinnati Reds (0-1)
6 10 2
W: Gallegos (1-0) L: Castillo (0-1)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

Jesse Winker reached base three times out of the leadoff spot, going 2-4 with a walk, double, and two runs scored. Nick Castellanos also reached base three times, going 3-5 with a double, home run, two runs scored, and he drove in two runs. Eugenio Suárez went 1-3 with a home run and two walks, but he also had two errors in the game and those errors helped put the Cardinals up big, early. Jonathan India went 2-4 in his debut with a double. Tyler Stephenson, who came in during a double switch, went 1-3.

Key Moment of the Game

The Reds had things moving in the 6th inning. Singles by Jonathan India, Tyler Stephenson, and Jesse Winker loaded the bases with one out, giving them perhaps their best chance of the game to get back into things. But Nick Castellanos flew out to left field and in what appears to be a situation where Tyler Stephenson forgot how many outs there were, he was doubled off of second base before Jonathan India was able to tag and reach the plate, keeping the score 11-6. The team didn’t really threaten much after that, much less threaten to the point of making the game close.

The Pitching

While today may not be the worst start of Luis Castillo’s career, it’s up there. It was 6-0 before Castillo recorded the 2nd out of the 1st inning, and he didn’t make it out of the 4th inning, finishing with a line of 3.1 innings and eight earned runs on eight hits, two walks, a hit batter, and a home run. He didn’t strike out a batter for only the second time in his big league career.

Sal Romano, who stated at the end of spring training that he was ready to show that he was a different pitcher, threw 2.0 hitless innings with a walk and two strikeouts. Day one of “show them things are different now” was successful for Romano. Carson Fulmer made a good impression in his Cincinnati Reds debut as he tossed 2.0 perfect innings with two strikeouts. Sean Doolittle gave up a leadoff double in the 9th inning to Paul Goldschmidt, but then went 1-2-3 with two strikeouts to stand him on the bases to give the Reds offense a chance to score a  touchdown and win the game. They didn’t, but at least he gave them that opportunity.

Notes Worth Noting

Nick Senzel made a diving catch in the top of the 4th inning. In the bottom of the 4th inning he was pinch hit for by Tyler Naquin. An inning later the team announced that he left the game with a left shoulder injury.

After the game manager David Bell said that indications are that Senzel would be ok, but they won’t have full knowledge of what to expect until tomorrow. “Hopefully we’ll have him back this weekend.”

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Cincinnati Reds

Saturday, April 3rd at 4:10pm ET

Adam Wainwright vs. Tyler Mahle

48 Responses

  1. Matt O'Neal

    There were a lot of reactions based on one game of Suarez’s defense. Sure, two errors aren’t good. But let’s overreact the other way. Sal Romano, Fulmer, and Doolittle did good work today. I had preset in my mind that Romano is on the roster until Gray is ready. What happens if he is still pitching well? de Leon gets optioned to make space for him? Same could be asked of when Lorenzen is ready.

    • Doug Gray

      When bad things happen in the first game of the year the overreactions are going to be strong.

      Suarez certainly had a bad day in the field, and that’s putting it lightly. But had this game happened on April 24th, and he had been solid up that point, we’d probably not see the kinds of reactions we did (or at least that I did).

      They play 162 games for a reason in this sport.

      • Matt O'Neal

        I know! That’s kinda what I was getting at. I’m a math teacher who really enjoys statistics – no need to explain small sample sizes to me lol. I’m excited to either watch and enjoy the next 161 games.
        I put on my Twitter account that it’s April and I got to watch live baseball games that count today. My team lost, which stinks, but still. Live baseball in April. Bring on the next 161.

      • Kevin Davis


        On his second error, when they showed the replay on TV, I thought the fault should be on Votto. Realize not the best of throws, but it appeared that Votto just made a bad play on the ball.

    • JB

      Honestly who isnt throwing well should go. Bell has said he wants the best 26. Right now Bedrosian would be odd man out.

      • Matt O'Neal

        I agree. But like Doug said, they play 162 for a reason. We’ll have a better picture of who goes down in a couple of weeks when Sonny is actually ready to return from the IL. Same thing with Lorenzen.

    • Jack

      Bound to be reactions when he a number of errors in spring training, hasn’t played the position in years and wasn’t that great when he did. Not sure I would classify those as overreactions though

  2. JB

    Wasnt what we all expected today but it was game one of 162. I liked the hitting and the relief pitchers who were suppose to be question Marks going in. Reds seem to hit Wainright so hopefully Saturday will be different. Win or lose it was a great day today with the return of baseball.

  3. Tim Phillips

    Senzel is never going to play a full season. This could be his last season as a Red.

    • TR

      When the DH comes to the NL for good, Senzel could fill that role.

    • Earmbrister

      Speaking of potential overreactions … Let’s see how many games he misses, if any, before declarative statements. Like Doug and others have said, there are 161 games remaining.

    • Tom

      Should have already been gone. Problem with the Reds, they hang onto guys much too long when they just aren’t any good anymore. Need a bounce back to this poor start.

  4. Votto4Life

    Doug, any word on how serious Senzel’s injury is? Shoulder injuries are concerning. Nick just can’t catch a break.

    Castellenos is really swinging well. If he has a big season he will likely opt out. I also think one of the Red’s third basemen (likely Moose) will end up in Washington around mid season.

    The 2022 opening day roster could look radically different.

    I’m assigning all errors by Red’s shortstops this season to Bob Castellini.

    • Doug Gray

      I added it to the article a few minutes ago. David Bell said indications are it’s not serious and he hopes to have him back this weekend. Also did say that you don’t know for sure until tomorrow. But yeah, it doesn’t sound like they are concerned.

      • Doc

        It seems they all tend to be out much longer than initial projections. Those who are out longer than initial projections would make a pretty formidable lineup.

  5. Tomn

    Castillo was not even that bad except for the pitch to Carlson. Two soft infield hits and two errors by Suarez. True he looked stuff out there and unsure about even trying to throw a slider or change. Winker, Castellano and India look ready to rock. Sure hope Denzel is ok. Can the Reds hire a professional tumbler to teach Senzel how to tumbler and not get hurt. I’m serious.

  6. B

    The key moment in this game was Suarez’s error in the first. If that goes for the DP it should’ve been then we’re looking at a tie game after 9

    I like this team though. Everyone should be healthy soon (bell said senzel could be back this weekend) and there’s a lot to like. Going to be fun to watch the young guys grow

    • Doug Gray

      I could have been more specific – that was the key moment for “the offense”.

    • Doc

      The game certainly would have been different, but saying it would be tied in the ninth, thereby assuming nothing else would have happened any differently just doesn’t stand up.

  7. Klugo

    I feel bad for Suarez. He’ll do anything for the team and with a spectacular attitude. But he’s playing SS because Nick Krall didn’t do his job adequately. Suarez will take some lumps while Nick Kralls under a rock and hides. Cardinals’ big move this offseason: Nolan Arenado. Red’s big move this offseason: Dick Williams resignation and Nick Krall taking over. It’s up to Suarez now to save his butt.

    • RojoBenjy

      It would have been nice if Krall would have birthed the brain child of Suárez at SS much earlier and informed the player, so that he could have been working on it all these pst months instead of just the last 2-3 weeks.

    • Earmbrister

      Klugo, I’d use the analogy of a construction worker being told to excavate a foundation for a building and being handed a shovel with which to do it. Krall clearly was told by the owner to reduce payroll. He couldn’t add a SS through free agency because he didn’t have the $. He got rid of payroll costs where he could, and historically the BP is a good place to economize. We may never now what potential trades were offered/considered. I, for one, am happy we didn’t blow prospect capital on a one year rental like Lindor.

  8. ClevelandRedsFan

    Positive vibes on Senzel.

    On the bright side of overreactions, Reds were not homerun or bust on offense. Of and by the way, India for MVP!!!!

    • TR

      Good vibes from India on offense and defense. I see him taking over second base this season.

    • Sliotar

      Some good calls there, Cleveland.

      -Winker as lead-off hitter seems poised to have an awesome season. Will get on base a lot with his batting eye, if he’s not swinging out of his shoes.

      – HRs are always going to be a factor at GABP … but moving the line along will help on the road. Reds showed that potential.

      Rockies did some small ball, put the ball in play a lot and beat the Dodgers today.

      Some balance to nothing but HR/BB/K will do MLB a lot of good and be a more entertaining product.

  9. Redsvol

    I’m less concerned about suarez than I am Castillo. Castillo looked very slow and predictable to home plate. I’m hoping it was the cold weather but he has to come out with better energy on a big game like opening day. He’s the number 1 starter. Also Votto is clearly not ready after his absence and the organization needs to quit bowing to his every wish. He plays when the coaches think he is not ready and not when Joey thinks he’s ready. That throw to 1st base should be a routine pick. Otherwise there were some encouraging signs. The team didn’t mail it in after that first inning.

    • RojoBenjy

      I’m inclined to give Castillo a break since he likely could not feel his fingers. Hard to pitch with a block of ice for a hand.

      • jim walker

        Agree on the weather situation; but, the Cards had some really fat pitches to hit. The pitch Arenado singled on in the 1st could just as easily been launched into orbit, thigh high inner half..

  10. Optimist

    Following it on gamecast was awful (no TV here), and was really pulling for an AA bomb, but after a few hours there are some interesting positives hidden in that mess. Agree that’s why they play 162, and this seemed quite a bit flukier than most of the losses the past few years. 6 runs and several excellent RPers will get it done. Keep that up and they’re looking good.

    • MuddyCleats

      Agree on AA; he had a couple of good chances to make something happen. Looked like he was trying to stay w/in himself and not be too aggressive; not sure that helped him much? Check swing strike on his last AB was a tough call; Ump was ready to go. Fortunately, there was NO drama in CF w/ all balls hit right at him. I can only imagine the pain if he makes a error in the field.

    • Gonzo Reds

      Had the Dish preview to watch (refuse to pay for the season when the Reds refused to pay for a SS) but to add insult to injury they inserted the hated Cards tv feed on the Reds station so not only had to see this debacle but had to listen to them crow about it.

      Good start for India, him doing well will make it difficult to move Moose back to 2B with Suarez back at 3B. Now I’m all for having Moose at 1B a couple games a week to keep Votto fresh and work in some other guys at 2B/SS/3B (remember India played 3B at Florida).

  11. B

    That’s correct but we will never know. All we do know is that error led to 5 extra runs that inning for the cardinals

  12. GreatRedLegsFan

    Certainly a discouraging start by Castillo, hope will be better next outing. Votto doesn’t look fit for regular playing time, at least for now. I hope Senzel’s condition is not serious. Other than that, team looks good enough for a 3rd place at best.

  13. Rednat

    the 6th inning was disheartening because you had 3 hits and no runs. Yes Stephenson’s base running blunder hurt but there are some other observations to be made as well.

    1. the ball India hit would have been a triple at Riverfront stadium. honestly I cannot recall a ball ever “bouncing to the wall” at GABP. The grass in Gabp is just too darn thick. Especially in the outfield. i am not saying go to astroturf but do something to speed up the ball when it gets to the outfield. i always chuckle when people say gabp is a hitters ballpark. homerun ball park, yes. hitters ballpark- no way.

    2. Stephenson’s single came on a 3-2 pitch. if India had been running, which you used to see all the time on a 3-2 pitch, he makes it to third easily. he broke and stopped which actually slowed him down.

    3. on Winkers hit i felt House put up the stop sign way way too early. Let India at least make an aggressive turn to home. the right fielder slipped on the paly and he may have been able to score.

    i feel the reds can have some success with the small ball, singles and doubles approach but that will require smarter baserunning and also a faster field surface would be nice as well.

    • Westfester

      One big reason to let the grass grow is if your team is slow defensively. It helps keep the ball from getting away from the plodders. I bet they let centerfield be almost painted dirt when Billy was there.

    • ClevelandRedsFan

      In one run game, yes to all of these. However, it was a 5 run game. The situation called for conservative base running. When you’re down 5, you can’t afford to get thrown out going first to third on a single. Reds needed a big inning, not scratching out an extra run.

      • Old Big Ed

        This is a correct opinion. Running on a 3-2 count against Yadier Molina could have resulted in a strike-out/throw-out double play, which would have been the tootblan of the year.

        The one and only goof in that inning was Stephenson’s completely awful blunder. If he had scored, the Reds may have only lost 11-8 instead of 1106.

    • Jimbo44CN

      Agree on number 3. Thought he stopped him prematurely. Also, nobody mentioned that Mr. Bell helped the first inning blowup by putting the shift on a right handed hitter who it into the wide open space on the right side of the infield. It looked to me like he took that pitch and put it to that side purposely. No more shifting on him after that. At least I don’t remember any more against him.

  14. MuddyCleats

    Tend to agree on Def side of things. Reminds me of Ryan Freel Defensively. Kid can play OF, but appears to have more of an infielder’s body; I think he’ll always be out of position and prone to injury in the OF? Luv the energy he brings to each game, but it appears he presses too hard AB and becomes frustrated very easily? It would b great to see him relax and become the hitter everyone expected him to be. I recall moving Nick Esasky to the OF improved his Offense. Praying the kid is healthy and can enjoy some success.

  15. DDRedsfan

    Not the way we wanted to start, but it is also just one game in a long season. Come out and take game 2. Offense didn’t look too bad. Nice to see India record a couple hits in his debut. Hoping Senzel will be ok. Suarez’s error in the first was a game changer. No guarantee they turn two but with Molina running could’ve shut down that inning. Let’s go Reds!!!

    On another note. It was nice to see Trammel start for the Mariners last night. Man, they are going to have a nice young core outfield when they bring up Kelenic. Trammel, Kelenic and Lewis. Fraley as well. I’ll always be a Reds fan but I love watching baseball and seeing all these young players getting a chance is great. IMO

  16. Grand Salami

    It was great being there but the 1st inning really set everyone back. The game environs (weather-wise) were pretty miserable. The moon deck was cold and had a breeze rippling across.

    Suarez error’s simply deflated the crowd and the grumbling was evident. I wondered about an error on Votto too bc it was bad but appeared to be on-line.

    Votto didn’t look good initially today. I don’t think he’s the answer at #3 this season. Let’s see what happens when Akiyama returns ….

    A lot to like from our bullpen, to the rookies/Winker, and Bells move to pull Castillo when he did. The leaving him in for 5 fallacy was evident in the other dugout.

  17. Westfester

    Definitely a rough start to the season, but that’s why they play 162.

    Take away the 1st inning and the Reds really showed some potential. didn’t have Stephenson as recording the first TOOTBLAN of the season (would have LOVED to see Joey v. a RHP with runners on in the ensuing at bat), but I know he will learn from it. Really encouraged to see the hitters not swinging out of their shoes and going for solid line drives. Only one game but I’m more excited about this offense.

  18. Still a Red

    A lot of people down on Votto. On the throw from Suarez, while it may have looked like it was on line, in the gameday replay, Joey looked fully stretched and had to short hop the throw. Joey’s a good scooper…I think that one was on Suarez. In re: to hitting, wow two infield pop-ups for the first time since 2008. But hey, he came through with a timely RBI single on a high fast ball, with two strikes, after a pretty ugly checked swing strike. He looks pretty stiff in his new upright stance (which seems more upright than ever), but I was impressed with how he went up to get that fastball.

    • VaRedsFan

      You are correct on the 1st scoop attempt….it wasn’t a short hop or long hop… the in between hop at full stretch was the most difficult. Little leagues make that 2nd scoop most of the time. MLB’ers should make it 99 out of 100

  19. Chris Morris

    Moose didn’t hit well last year, has not hit well this spring, and may be a liability with the bat. Votto still a better hitter than Moose. Suarez back to 3rd, Farmer/Blandino/or any glove first good defense SS, and this team can compete. Score 6 runs every game and baseball will be fun in Cincy again! Would like to see the same barrel ball hard hit analysis that was done on Nick Cast done on Moose. I want to believe, but he doesn’t “look” right.

  20. Roger Garrett

    Just one game so we file it and move on.Nobody expects Eugenio to be anything but average at best and all he really needs to do is just make the ones he should make which he didn’t.He will get better with practice at the position.Hard to evaluate the offense when you get down early in the game.No pressure on the opposing pitchers so here it his hit and we did.Reds may have something with Senzel,India and Stephensen going forward.

  21. Greenfield Red

    What may be the single biggest positive point about yesterday’s game that has not been mentioned is this: The Suarez HR was the right field. He hit the ball away from the shift. To me, that is a very good sign.