The 1st place Cincinnati Reds will look to do more of the same thing this afternoon as they did last night when they dropped 10 runs on Cleveland in a win in the series opener. They’ll turn to Sonny Gray in this one as the right-handed pitcher makes his 2021 debut at 4:10pm ET.

Starting Lineups


Cincinnati Reds

Amed Rosario – CF Jesse Winker – LF
Cesar Hernandez – 2B Nick Castellanos – RF
Jose Ramirez – 3B Joey Votto – 1B
Eddie Rosario – LF Eugenio Suárez – SS
Franmil Reyes – RF Tyler Naquin – CF
Josh Naylor – 1B Jonathan India – 2B
Andres Gimenez – SS Tucker Barnhart – C
Austin Hedges – C Kyle Farmer – 3B
Triston McKenzie – SP Sonny Gray – SP

Starting Pitchers

Sonny Gray

After missing the first two-and-a-half weeks of the season, Sonny Gray returns to the mound after back spasms cut off his spring training. The right-handed pitcher has made a rehab start with the alternate site team in Louisville, and on the road trip threw a simulated game at Chase Field when the team was in Arizona. He says he’s ready to go.

Pitch usage from 2020

4-Seam 2-Seam Change Slider Curveball
Velo 93.0 93.0 89.9 82.8 80.8
Usage 25.8% 26.7% 3.7% 16.2% 27.6%

Triston McKenzie

23-year-old Triston McKenzie has pitched in 10 games for Cleveland between 2020 and 2021 with an ERA of 3.51 in 41.0 innings. He’s made seven starts and three relief appearances – including one this season. He came out of the bullpen on April 5th against Kansas City and threw 3.2 innings and then on Monday he started against the White Sox and threw 4.0 innings on 76 pitches. How long Cleveland will let him go this afternoon could come into play, even if he’s having some success.

We’re dealing with a small sample size of just 41.0 innings in the big leagues for McKenzie, but he’s dominated righties – holding them to a .132/.239/.250 line in 88 plate appearances. Lefties have found more success, hitting .231/.286/.477 against him. Neither righties or lefties seem to hit him well, or get on base against him – but lefties crush the ball when they do seem to turn their contact into hits. Eight of the 15 hits against him by lefties in his career have gone for extra-base hits. He’s also pitched much worse on the road – his ERA is literally twice as high, 2.41 at home versus 4.43 on the road, and  opponents have a .725 OPS on the road versus just a .468 OPS against him at home.

Pitch Usage in 2021

4-Seam Change Slider Curveball
Velo 92.0 86.2 87.6 79.0
Usage 64.9% 8.2% 13.4% 13.4%

When and Where

  • Game time: 4:10pm ET
  • Where: Great American Ballpark, Cincinnati
  • Watch: Bally Sports Ohio (formerly Fox Sports Ohio),
  • Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
  • Forecast: 55°, cloudy, 40% chance of rain

News and Notes

Mike Moustakas remains out of the lineup

After being a late scratch to the lineup on Friday night, Mike Moustakas is out of the lineup once again this afternoon. Last night it was stated that he was out because of a non-COVID related illness. Though he is not in the starting lineup, manager David Bell said that he would be available off of the bench today.

Cam Bedrosian designated for assignment

Needing a roster spot for Sonny Gray, someone was going to be moved off of the roster this afternoon. That player was Cam Bedrosian. The reliever has an ERA of 11.12 through two-and-a-half weeks with the team. He’s been designated for assignment, which also clears a spot on the 40-man roster for the organization.

NL Central Standings

Playoff odds via Fangraphs

Team W L GB Playoff %
Reds 8 5 0 31.7%
Brewers 7 6 1.0 51.9%
Cardinals 6 7 2.0 19.7%
Pirates 6 8 2.5 0.6%
Cubs 5 8 3.0 12.4%

86 Responses

  1. west larry

    Doug, your brother by another mother is pitching today. I’d like to see him go six innings today, but that might be asking a lot for a pitcher coming off the ten day d l . go reds!

  2. Indy Red Man

    Blandino on the IL and Mark Payton called up. I wonder if Bell will try to work Senzel into the infield at all?

    • Redsfan4life

      Indy, I doubt it. They still have Farmer and Schrock as backup Infielders.

  3. Indy Red Man

    Bigfoot , Loch Ness, and a 4 pitch walk to Castellanos))

  4. DaveCT

    When the Cleveland starter turns in his windup, I can’t see him.

  5. Indy Red Man

    92 right down the middle and Naquin missed it. Its not like the kid is really changing speeds either. Well if Naquin and Senzel both scuffle a little bit then I’d ride with Senzel, but if Tyler can keep it going at all then I’d platoon and give Senzel some utility IF time.

    • Redsfan4life

      Shogo will likely get most of the time in a platoon with Senzel soon. Naquin is a 4th 5th OFer nothing more.

      • Indy Red Man

        His lifetime ops is like 60 points higher then Senzel’s but ok. Naquin has like 950 career atbats too so its not like he’s played 3-4 full years more then Senzel. Shogo? No power….can’t throw. We’ll see? He could improve, but isn’t he 32 already?

    • Redsfan4life

      Shogo is making 7 mil a year and Naquin makes 1.5. Unless Naquin continues to Mash HRs before Shogo gets back then Naquin will return to his 4th 5th OF spot.
      I think Shogo can be very valuable for the club. He makes contact runs well and has a good glove. He really hit well 2nd part of last year.

      • Indy Red Man

        Naquin was a 1st round pick, but I agree with you. Only problem is where do you bat Shogo? I guess Bell could drop Jesse to a rbi spot, but time will tell. Great problems to have! Tucker is hitting out of his mind too!

        You could bat Jesse 1st and Shogo 9th?

    • Redsfan4life

      Yeah good problem for sure. Ii would hate to mess with Winker while he is hot but Ii would like to see him hit in the middle of the order somewhere. I think he could be a 100 RBI run producer and still have a high OBP. I figure Shogo gets worked back in slowly. Depending on how well he plays will determine playing time.
      I sure hope not but you have to wonder if Senzel , Winker or Naquin will make it through a year without at least on IL stint. All three has a injury history. Good to have depth.

  6. Indy Red Man

    This kid doesn’t have much today! He was throwing harder when I watched him pitch at home. Reds will hammer him 2nd time thru I think.

  7. Frankie Tomatoes

    It is so good to see Sonny back on the mound. Good start to the year without him but he makes the pitching staff so much better.

    Need to win today with Bieber pitching tomorrow.

  8. JB

    I think this is the year Winker breaks out. If he stays healthy he could have a great year and maybe contend for the batting title.

    • Redsfan4life

      I agree. I have always been a huge Winker fan. So happy he wasn’t traded and happy he is getting to play so far against LHP.

    • Matt WI

      Yep… he’s killing it and he’s easy to root for.

  9. Indy Red Man

    Hate Suarez swinging at 3-0 there? Borderline pitch and he’s a double play waiting to happen too. Oh well. We need this game. I feel like 4-5 against Arizona, SF, and Clev minus Beiber is not good enough. We need to sweep

  10. Indy Red Man

    Uggghhhh. Cmon Bell? Sonny isn’t fooling them and won’t go much longer anyway. This is Dusty 101. Lets most likely halt a promising inning for no good reason

    • Redsfan4life

      Yes should have used Schrock there. If one guy reaches base Bell will probably pull Gray anyway. Missed chance there may come back to haunt.

  11. Daytonnati

    So we traded a possible big inning for one more out.

  12. ClevelandRedsFan

    What’s the point of having Gray bunt only to pull him in the next inning? Reds gave up a valuable out.

  13. J

    It’s hard to imagine what sorts of things are going through Bell’s mind when he lets Gray hit and asks him to intentionally make the second out, knowing that at MOST he’s pitching one more inning — and hasn’t looked especially sharp since the first inning. Just seems like he’s operating under a different set of assumptions, goals, and expectations than the rest of us.

  14. ClevelandRedsFan

    Votto is and has been a turrrrrrible base runner for about a decade now.

    That’s now 2 outs in the last 2 innings that the Reds gave up.

    • JB

      How is that Vottos fault? House told him to go! House is terrible at 3rd. Sends guys when he shouldn’t and holds guys up when they should go.

    • 2020ball

      That had to be a coaching snafu. The play wasn’t in front of Votto so theres no reason he’d decide to run on his own.

  15. JB

    Joey was looking right at House and then sped up when he must of seen House give him the go ahead. Wakeup Larkin. Sending the slowest runner on the team was his first mistake.

  16. Matt WI

    Um, what on earth was Votto going home for? TV says they can’t tell if House sent him. If so, he should be relieved of all duties. Drat.

    • 2020ball

      play’s behind him, theres no way he makes that call blind. I know everyone loves the good-‘ol-Votto-bash around here and all but thats on House.

  17. JB

    This is a crazy game. It feels like the Reds have about 5 or 6 runs and are dominating the Indians and they are down a run and have less hits. I really hope the Gray bunting with one out doesnt haunt us.

  18. DeadRed

    Larkin. One of my favorite players of all time. As a broadcast commentator… dull in the tongue. Sheesh!

    • JB

      Agree and the other guy never shuts up. . I’ve turned it over to the Indians station.

      • 2020ball

        “the other guy” is a great nickname for him lol. I can never remember his name either.

  19. DeadRed

    Reds gotta be one of, if not the worst baserunning team.

  20. ClevelandRedsFan

    Way too many outs given up today. Hard to win when you give away 1 out per inning.

  21. JB

    Nice one Votto. I was saying there is no way Rosario tagged up and made it home in time. Now let’s get some runs!!!!!!

  22. DeadRed

    Triple play! C’mon. That’s gotta be a premonition that we’re gonna score some runs now!

  23. Indy Red Man

    Wow. Time to break thru now!

    Win or lose though letting Sonny bunt makes zero sense. You don’t accept a deficit against anyone’s A team pen? Their starter was all over the place and was much more hittable

    • 2020ball

      Ya some questionable calls from the coashing staff look like theyre costing them thus far. The making-the-first-out-at-third from Winker doesnt look very good either, but thats the result of aggression on the basepaths.

  24. DeadRed

    That high heat’s tough to deal with.

  25. Eurostep

    I think it’s becoming obvious that this team cannot hit good pitching. So what are they going to do when they face great pitching in the playoffs? I guess we just have to settle for being ok to good but at least we’re not bad.

    • 2020ball

      Is anyone good at hitting good pitching?

  26. Indy Red Man

    So we get Beiber tomorrow? Great.

    Then Tues-Wed we have Castillo and Mahle with 7 days off. I’d be surprised if either one is sharp. Baseball players are creatures of habit.

  27. Daytonnati

    There was more emotion at Prince Philip’s funeral.

  28. Daytonnati

    But maybe we get a Bill Buckner break!!

  29. DeadRed

    Pulled “Buckner”! Haha. Lessgo.

  30. JB

    Reds need to win it because Bell has burned through all the good relievers.

    • Jim t

      His use of the pen maybe why we are still in the game

  31. 2020ball

    After all the miscues today, nice to see them capitalize on the other teams mistake.

    What a game today, very entertaining.

  32. Mark Moore

    10th inning will be an adventure

  33. B

    Suarez strands 8 more today. Maybe if he’d not worry about hitting 50 hone runs he’d have more hits.

      • DeadRed

        True that. However, that drive to RF was good contact.

    • ClevelandRedsFan

      Suarez crushed 3 balls today. Two were line drive outs to RF. The third was a line drive at 3B. I’ll take that contact all day.

    • Mark Moore

      He performed nicely. Hoping we don’t need any more pitchers tonight.

  34. Matt WI

    Disagree with the negative comments about Larkin and Sedek… pulled a free trial of I’ve been really impressed by both. Larkin is sharp without being mean.

    Also… Reds are over .500 since a Brennamen stopped calling their games. Coincidence, the power of getting rid of negative loudmouths? You make the call. 🙂

    • 2020ball

      I was tired of Brenneman and his negative attitude so these guys are a nice change-up. Larkin did well today, but he’s no natural broadcaster IMO, plus Welsh is world-class so he pales in comparison. I like Sadak overall.

      • Matt WI

        Larkin in a few games is 10x more listenable than how Cowboy started and infinity better than Sean Casey. Would way ahead of Graves too.

    • TR

      I’m glad that Barry Larkin is in the broadcast booth. A great HOF shortstop and a smart guy who knows the game and speaks well.

  35. AllTheHype

    I can’t watch the game right now but box score states Senzel is playing 3rd. Is that correct?

    • Mark Moore

      Yep. Only option left and it looks like Moose might still be feeling a little punkish.

  36. Daytonnati

    Sadak is like an eager puppy. He is just so happy to have this gig.

  37. Daytonnati

    They stole one today. Weeeeeeeeeeeeee ….!!

    • Mark Moore

      Stole, earned, won … it’s all good at the moment.

  38. Mark Moore

    Way to go Tyler!!! Got to feel great about how this finished.

    Seeing Geno on 3rd he really does look a LOT more trim.

  39. JB

    Like I’ve said before. Cant remember a better bench.

  40. AllTheHype

    Nice bullpen effort today, kept them in the game from 5th on. Luv Antone, and now De Leon also, pitching high leverage innings in tight games.

  41. TR

    The mark of a winning team. Less than two outs, runner on third base, flyball gets him in.

    • Mark Moore

      Had to explain that game winning hit to my wife 🙂

      Happy to do that every time!