The longest off day of the year, also known as the day between Opening Day and Game 2, is finally over and the Cincinnati Reds are ready to get back on the field. They’ll look to rebound from the Opening Day loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday. Here’s hoping the first inning goes a little better today.

First pitch happens at 4:10 EDT from Great American Ball Park. You can watch on Bally Sports Ohio (formerly Fox Sports Ohio) or listen on 700 WLW. The weather looks to be an absolutely delightful 61 degrees and sunny at game time.

Starting Pitchers

REDS

Tyler Mahle gets the ball for the Reds in his first start of the season. Last year, he recorded a 3.59 ERA in 47.2 innings. He was inserted into the rotation after Wade Miley got hurt early in the shortened season, and pitched well for a fifth starter. It was good enough to earn a spot in the 2021 rotation.

Mahle uses four pitches: four-seam fastball, slider, split finger, and curveball. His four-seamer is the pitch he relies on most, but something happened last year with his breaking pitches. In 2019, he didn’t throw the slider at all and the curveball was his secondary pitch after the fastball. However, in 2020, he threw his curveball just 0.9% of the time, while throwing his slider 32.4% of the time and getting a 41.5% whiff rate on it. It’s by far the highest whiff rate on one of his pitches in his career.

CARDINALS

Yes, Adam Wainwright is still pitching in the big leagues. At 39 years old, he signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Cardinals for the 2021 season. And for the most part, Wainwright is still pitching decently too. In 65.2 innings last season, he had a 3.15 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. The ERA, however, is a little deceiving given that his FIP was over 4.00. One thing Wainwright has continued to do well throughout his career is limit walks. He walked only 15 batters in 2020, leading to a 7.6 BB% and the 1.05 WHIP. In 2019, he was one of the top pitchers in the league at limiting walks, only giving up 64 in 171.2 innings.

Wainwright has five pitches (curve ball, sinker, cutter, four-seamer, and change-up), but primarily throws his curve ball, sinker and cutter. He usually saves the four-seam fastball and the change-up for left handed hitters. The curve ball is his best pitch. He had a 33.0% whiff rate with it in 2020, but that’s probably because it’s so slow that hitters are always ahead of it. It clocked in at 73 mph last year. When he locates it, it’s usually down and out to right-handed batters.

Stats from 2020

Name IP ERA FIP xFIP WHIP K% BB%
Tyler Mahle 47.2 3.59 3.88 4.59 1.15 29.9% 10.4%
Adam Wainwright 65.2 3.15 4.11 4.23 1.05 20.6% 5.7%

Stat of the Day

Starting Lineups

CARDINALS REDS
1. Tommy Edman (2B)
2. Paul Goldschmidt (1B)
3. Nolan Arenado (3B)
4. Paul DeJong (SS)
5. Tyler O’Neill (LF)
6. Yadier Molina (C)
7. Dylan Carlson (CF)
8. Justin Williams (RF)
9. Adam Wainwright (P)
1. Jesse Winker (LF)
2. Nick Castellanos (RF)
3. Joey Votto (1B)
4. Eugenio Suarez (SS)
5. Mike Moustakas (3B)
6. Jonathan India (2B)
7. Tyler Naquin (CF)
8. Tucker Barnhart (C)
9. Tyler Mahle (P)

News and Notes

Nick Senzel is not in the lineup tonight, but he’s apparently available to pinch hit. This seems like a good sign after his diving catch on Thursday. Redleg Nation has you covered on all the updates, including quotes from David Bell.

The Reds picked up catcher Beau Taylor on waivers today and to make room for him on the 40-man roster they designated catcher Deivy Grullón for assignment. We wrote about it here shortly after the game preview went live.

Shogo Akiyama started the season on the 10-day injured list with a hamstring strain. While it still looks like it will be a couple of weeks at least, he is reporting to the alternate site in Louisville. That’s a good sign.

Jonathan India was on MLB Network Radio after his Opening Day performance, talking about his goals for the year.

Finally, here’s a clip from the Rays-Marlins game last night because I can’t stop watching this pitch and the batter’s swing. Baseball is back and so are these highlights.

56 Responses

  1. Jonathan Linn

    Where or how can I listen to the games online? Through iheart radio and 700 WLW?

    Reply
    • Doug Gray

      Yes. Online allows streaming through iheartradio if you are within a certain distance – but I do not know how far out that goes.

      Reply
  2. James

    The Reds I think should win this one. If Nick Castellanos plays well as long with the hitting, not to mention the pitching, we should play well. Our stats are very well against Adam Wainwright, I believe we have a decent shot.

    Reply
    • VaRedsFan

      Now 15 HRs vs. the Reds….next closest, 9 vs. the Cubs

      Reply
  3. Roger Garrett

    ESPN showed Mahle throwing Dejong 5 sliders and 3 in a row with #3 being hit out.Hindsight but do you think he was looking for it?

    Reply
  4. VaRedsFan

    I say this every year….but why, on a 2-2 count, is Tucker standing up asking for a high fastball. Wasting pitches. Huge pet peeve.

    Reply
    • JB

      I was going to say the same thing. Hitters are to good to chase and why do it with Mahles pitch count high.

      Reply
  5. ClevelandRedsFan

    Stephenson benched for his TOOTBLAN yesterday? Tucker taking advantage. I love it.

    Reply
    • JB

      I think it’s more of a right handed pitcher and gets tucker’s left handed bat in the lineup.

      Reply
  6. VaRedsFan

    Run support from the bottom is a bonus, hopefully the to will get it’s share too.

    Reply
  7. VaRedsFan

    Castellenos just missed a double in the 1st…now a line shot single up the middle

    Reply
  8. Tom Mitsoff

    It’s amazing what can happen when a team puts the ball into play consistently instead of striking out while aiming for the fences.

    Reply
    • magi210

      I’m liking this whole “Making contact” strategy.

      Reply
    • Nathan

      This is much more fun to watch than strikeout, strikeout, home run, strikeout like the last couple of seasons.

      Reply
      • JayTheRed

        I think they said that there have not been 5 singles in a row since May of 2019.

        Love seeing it.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        Of course, it’s just one inning. But other than Barnhart’s homer, there were only two other balls hit in the inning with an exit velocity over 90 mph.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        I was there that day in the upper deck and saw that ball go out of the stadium!

  9. VaRedsFan

    The booth as talking about how much good contact Naquin makes. Health has been an issue for him too. Maybe between he and Senzel, they keep CF covered between injuries.

    Reply
    • Tom Mitsoff

      Good point. 🙂 I really had no idea that Naquin was so highly regarded in terms of his hitting ability.

      Reply
  10. Indy Red Man

    Mahle comes inside like hoarders throw stuff away

    Reply
  11. VaRedsFan

    That was a tough pitch Votto hit for a 2-strike single.

    Reply
    • Tom Mitsoff

      It’s going to be an interesting year between these two teams. Shades of recent years with Pittsburgh.

      Reply
    • RojoBenjy

      Did he really? I’m not watching. But MLB will be blind to it

      Reply
      • VaRedsFan

        On his way to the to Nick, he bumped the ump

  12. JB

    Well Senzel is alright. He was in the middle of that scrum pushing people back.

    Reply
  13. JB

    India doing a little Diettrich imitation there and leaning into it. Love this kid.

    Reply
  14. Frankie Tomatoes

    Why was Castellanos ejected but Molina was not? One of them went after the other one and that guy is still in the game.

    Reply
    • RojoBenjy

      Unquestionably.

      Castellanos had the pitcher on his back, reacted emotionally and walked away. Yadi chased him down and got in hai face

      One of these things is not like the other.

      Injustice, says I! Lol

      Reply
  15. Joey

    It would be nice to have an explanation on the ejection. Ump to the Reds dugout- There’s no yelling in baseball!

    Reply
    • RojoBenjy

      I don’t expect such courtesy for the “lowly” Reds

      The explanations afterwards should be an entertaining lot of words that say nothing

      Reply
  16. JB

    Boy Aquino needed that. Hopefully that builds his confidence up and he can get comfortable at the plate.

    Reply
    • MBS

      Yes, he looked lost yesterday. Great to see Senzel back on the field. Hopefully Winker was pulled as a Defensive Replacement with our comfortable lead.

      Reply
  17. J

    It’s hard to understand how this team could ever have trouble scoring.

    Reply
  18. DaveCT

    The romance between Jonathon India and the fans has officially begun.

    Reply
  19. Jack

    Figured they would win since foxsportsgo is suddenly not working today for me.

    Reply
  20. Mark Moore

    Okay. I’ll take that result.

    Loving India so far.

    Reply
  21. VaRedsFan

    Good job men! The importance of tacking on runs.
    Take the series tomorrow.

    Reply

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