In the span of a week the Cincinnati Reds have gone from first to worst in the National League Central division. They’ve lost six games in a row after a shutout loss to St. Louis on Saturday. There will be a matchup that features the opening day starters for both teams as Luis Castillo and Jack Flaherty face off this afternoon at 2:15pm ET.
St. Louis Cardinals
|Alex Blandino – 3B||Tommy Edman – 2B|
|Jesse Winker – LF||Dylan Carlson – CF|
|Nick Castellanos – RF||Paul Goldschmidt – 1B|
|Joey Votto – 1B||Nolan Arenado – 3B|
|Eugenio Suarez – SS||Paul DeJong – SS|
|Nick Senzel – CF||Justin Williams – RF|
|Tucker Barnhart – C||Tyler O’Neill – LF|
|Jonathan India – 2B||Andrew Knizner – C|
|Luis Castillo – SP||Jack Flaherty – SP|
The Cardinals beat Luis Castillo around in a bad way on Opening Day. In the three starts since he’s allowed just five earned runs in 16.0 innings (2.81 ERA) with four walks, two home runs, and 16 strikeouts against the Pirates, Giants, and Diamondbacks.
Left-handed hitters have obliterated the baseball this season against Castillo to the tune of .360/.418/.620 through 55 plate appearances. Righties haven’t had much success as they’ve posted a .250/.314/.313 line in 35 plate appearances.
Pitch usage from 2021
Cincinnati touched him up on opening day for six runs in just 4.1 innings, including two home runs. Since then he’s allowed three earned runs in 17.0 innings pitched and hasn’t allowed a homer to Miami or Washington (faced them twice).
Left-handed hitters have found more success against Flaherty than righties have. This year they’ve walked four times with just six strikeouts against him but righties have both homers against him this season, too. Extremely small sample size in 2021, and still a small sample size in 2020 given the shortened season.
Pitch Usage in 2021
When and Where
- Game time: 2:15pm ET
- Where: Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri
- Watch: Bally Sports Ohio (formerly Fox Sports Ohio), MLB.tv
- Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
- Forecast: 64°, Sunny, 0% chance of rain
News and Notes
Prior to the game today the Cincinnati Reds made several roster moves. They placed outfielder Aristides Aquino on the 60-day injured list. That opened up a spot on the 40-man roster for Vladimir Gutierrez, who has now completed his 80-game suspension for a positive test for the PED Stanozolol last year in spring training. He’ll remain with the alternate site club for now. And the team also added outfielder Dwight Smith Jr. to the alternate site roster. We wrote about each of the moves with a little bit more detail if you are interested in checking that out.
Shogo Akiyama’s rehab start gets delayed by rain
Saturday was supposed to be the first game action at the alternate site in Louisville for Reds outfielder Shogo Akiyama as he works his way back from a hamstring injury that he suffered in spring training. Mother Nature wasn’t having much of that plan, though, as the game was rained out.
We’re just going to leave our own tweet here
So to be clear: Ryan Tepera admitted he threw a baseball at another player and will have the same length suspension that Nick Castellanos served for yelling at a guy and having Yadier Molina put his hands on him.
Good job, Michael Hill. https://t.co/bQDJ65YCHk
— Redleg Nation (@redlegnation) April 25, 2021
NL Central Standings
Playoff odds via Fangraphs
A week ago somebody joked about my comment that Reds would be out of contention by the end of the month. Well, guess what? It’s April 25th!
The Reds are out of contention? I think the math would strongly disagree with you on that one. It’s early so every winning streak and losing streak are amplified. It’s time for another one of those winning streaks!
I wanted to bring that up too, who is questioning you now? Votto and Suarez at 3rd and 4th in the lineup. Rally killers supreme. Bullpen will give away the lead all day every day. Home sweet home in the basement.
New day Boys Lets go.
Like this Lineup to be Honest.
Not perfect, but like the change.
I could live with this lineup for awhile. When Moose returns Blandino sits and Moose in 2nd or 5th spot.
Assuming that Suárez has to be playing, that is
Yea Like to see it for a nice stretch.
See if it a legit batting order.
Since Blandy and Winker will slow down.
“ See if it a legit batting order.”
I hear you. I think so many of us are starving to have them let something ride for awhile to see what kind of “machine” may develop. That is my biggest frustration as a Reds fan.
Perhaps every team now changes lineups like socks, and i’m just out of it.
Yea frustrating since have stuck with, Suarez and Votto.
In same Spots for the most part.
Glad Both out of the top 3 in Order.
So happy with that, that is a start.
I like the lineup. I feel like we’re gonna get shut down by a #1 SP on getaway day and never see it again – but I like the idea. Avoid the sweep!
Not as big a shakeup in the lineup as I would have hoped, but at least it’s something to stir things up. I like Blandino hitting leadoff because he gets on base. Let’s see what happens. Votto and especially Suarez move down a little, which is warranted right now — although I might have pushed them down a little more.
Here’s my “shakeup” lineup to experiment with for a few days, as I posted on the recap thread yesterday:
1. Blandino — SS
2. Senzel — CF
3. Winker — LF
4. Castellanos — RF
5. Stephenson — C
6. Votto — 1B
7. Suarez — 3B
8. India — 2B
Just curious ….
I like it. There were box scores I found back in the day when Bench was 6th and Foster batted 8th. Team game.
I wouldn’t call this “curious,” I would call it something a big league manager would do. Oh, wait, we have one named David Bell. Silly me.
The only change I would make is to slide India up in front of Votto. I suppose Bell is scared he might bruise someone’s ego.
Well, I guess the “shakeup” (such as it is) hasn’t made a difference. Still can’t hit.
Starting to get worried about this team …
I like your lineup save Suarez needs to sit. Things tend to repeat thereselves look no further than last year,Suarez is in a funk he couldn’t hit a beach ball right now. The losing streak isn’t all on him. The total Reds team needs to be embarrassed by their play, and get mad dog mad and turn this thing around!!!
I said it yesterday.
Everyone wants to win.
The champions hate to lose.
If you hate to loose you don’t play guys that haven’t been helping you win
I think I am okay with never hearing “Big Flies” again. Isn’t “Long Flies” actually more accurate??
Interesting they said Senzel took grounders in the middle infield today. With Naquin, and Shogo coming back, a utility role might be in Senzel’s future.
Bench Votto, move Moose to 1st, start Senzel at 3rd. Looking at JV’s numbers the last couple of years, I’m not optimistic about his future productivity.
Blandino saw 6 pitches at the lead off spot.
Looking at the shift they put on Winker it still drives me crazy. What did he do? Hit right into it. Every player, when they see a shift put on them, should take it as an insult. Instead, to most I’m afraid, they take it as flattery. I know this is beating the same horse over and over again but…….
Winker is 2 for three with a home run; hardly the stuff warranting criticism because he made an out.
That was a general comment earlier in the game not against him personally. It goes for everyone….and yes he would be even better if he would go the other way against the shift.
Ugh. This is not a fun team to watch right now
Yeah, I’m there with ya.
I am beyond shocked that bell is actually figuring out that Suarez and Votto are not 3 and 4 hole hitters. Votto should be hitting 7th and Suarez 8th. Move Winker to 3 and Castellanos in the 4 hole.
Also, it’s very clear that something is not right with Castillo.
Having said that, this is just a really bad team that figures out a way to lose every night. If we score 8 runs, we figure out a way to give up 9; if we hold the other team to one or two runs, like yesterday, we figure out a way to not score any runs.
Castellini needs to sell this team and let someone take over that knows how to run a major league team. Giving Iglasias away for nothing because you couldn’t afford to pay his salary for a month or two while you look for a better deal was the last straw for me with Big Bob. It’s pretty obvious why Williams jumped ship now.
I understand your frustration but nobody was giving anything for Iglesias. He had 2 lousy years and With the month he is having with the Angel’s the Reds have won that trade. He wasnt worth the 10 Mil and the Angels are finding that out with his 1-2 record and 2 blown saves and a 7 era and 1.43 whip. Although he would fit right in with this bullpen. I do agree that there is no direction with this team.
I’ve been thinking. Let’s not forget why the manager has gotten as far as he has in Baseball. The hint was given last being during the broadcast of the game
Last evening * during the TV broadcast
And now on today’s TV broadcast there is another reference to the reason why David Bell has this job.
It begins with N and rhymes with “mepotism”
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.The Reds will not be real contenders without new ownership
Just like Cincinnati’s NFL “franchise”
Changing Lineups Will not help the Pitching.
Once can get that figured out.
Believe have better chance.
Figure out the hitting on the road.
And get Consistent Pitching and Defense
Team might have a chance.
Not really much of a lineup change. Moved Votto/Suarez to 4-5 instead of 3-4. And this is Castillo 4th mediocre start in 5 attempts. Likely, it’s not going to be a good day.
GreatRedLegsFan is right, out of contention by the end of the month. If it costs Bell his job, I guess I’m good with it. But it won’t.
I’m very much afraid, being the cheapskate big Bob is, that no matter what happens Bell is here for the rest of the year simply because he’s under contract and big Bob is not going to pay two managers although anyone in the organization already being paid could probably do a better job. All it takes is baseball common sense.
I’m sure that’s why he kept Krall, because he didn’t want to pay an established GM. So I’m afraid you are right, he will never fire Bell and hire a real manager and have to pay two salaries. Although, I wouldn’t mind seeing what Benevidos could do as an interim manger. Couldn’t be any worse than Bell IMHO.
The Reds haven’t been league average (100 or higher) on the road in wRC+ since 2010.
Coors Field East (GABP) has had an effect for quite a while.
Can’t wait for the Reds to get back home … hit some HRs vs. a currently lousy Cubs pitching staff … and #RedsTwitter will re-assure all of us that guys are “fixed now.”
Yup which means have an issue.
Just trying to be Positive.
Watching the young Guys, hopefully grow.
my previous comments were not posted and were within guidelines, why
Because your first comment has to be approved by a moderator and we aren’t sitting in the comments section at every moment of the day.
It was reported this week the Reds had operating losses of $47 million in 2020. 2021 wont be profitable either
I would expect a fire sale in July if this team isnt winning
Isn’t that a tax write off though?
I dont have a problem with them trading guys as long as it’s not the young ones. They need to get out of the Moose contract and Shogo as well.
Did the Reds open their books to an accountant? Otherwise take this with a massive grain of salt.
As in, don’t trust it?
Because if the case is that this “loss” is only what they want us to hear, then call me skeptical
The next time I trust what MLB or a team tells me about their financial situation will be the first time in a very long time because every piece of evidence that’s leaked out over the last two decades shows that they’ve always lied about what’s actually going on.
Cincinnati business journal quoting forbes. Theres a paywall but $47 million
Castillo needs to hit his spots. His stuff is good but he just isnt hitting his spots and when he doesnt and leaves it up, bad things happen.
I have Cowboy Brantley on overlay on MLB.TV … and he had a great insight at start of that last half-inning:
That Castillo maybe made his 3 best pin-point pitches of season vs. Flaherty to K him.
He showed some emotion after striking out Carlson.
If Castillo he needs is a little return of swagger …. look out. His stuff is unhittable when he is right.
I thought the same thing on Flaherty pitches. He hits his spots and he is untouchable. The one thing I have always wanted him to do is slow down and take a breather when he throws a couple of balks in a row. Sometimes he speeds himself up and he gets in trouble.
Winker just gave a clinic on winning an at bat
And Castellanos on GIDP
Wife is from Cali and a die hard Dodger fan. She was worried last night about the Dodger bats during the Padre series. I just laughed her told not to worry, that’s all about to change come Monday when the Reds get into town.
That homer should seal it. Castillo just laid it in there. Dont see the Reds hitters getting more than 3 hits against Flaherty.
What a joke… Leave it up to Votto and Suarez to combine for 3 outs and kill any chance of a rally.
Can we send Suarez back to Detroit for Alfredo Simon?
Castillo due up 3rd in 6th.
Probably last inning (?)
Only 12 outs left offensively … and 3 runs feels like a mountain right now.
Slip sliding away, slip sliding away
You know the nearer your destination, the more you slip sliding away
Whoah God only knows, God makes his plan
The information’s unavailable to the mortal man
We’re workin’ our jobs, collect our pay
Believe we’re gliding down the highway, when in fact we’re slip sliding away
I’m not counting last years nonsense so I think this will make something like 16 losing seasons in 20 years? Its not fun. You get excited for Opening Day and its just playing out the string by Memorial Day. Feeling good about the Reds offense after gabp is fools gold.
Yeah, and we might as well call this a 10 game losing streak right now because the Reds can’t even win in LA when the Dodgers are just good instead of great! The bullpen started this messy losing streak but now it has extended, like losing streaks always do, to the starting pitching, the offense AND the defense.
Regarding Suarez, I know he struggled last year but really the only thing they’ve accomplished with him this year by moving him to SS is take away his bat (worse than last year) and have a very bad SS. Let’s be honest here. He IS very bad, even worse than when he played it a few years ago. The only positive is getting India playing time. I’ve heard this and I guess is must be true that India doesn’t have the arm to play on the left side of the infield. If he did he could play SS. He’s probably the best infielder we have on the current 26 man roster. All this IMO of course.
Whoever told you that India doesn’t have the arm to play on the left side of the infield was misinformed. The guy was a third baseman. He’s got plenty of arm. The reason he doesn’t play shortstop is that he doesn’t have shortstop range. Not that the current shortstop does, either, of course.
I’m glad you told me that because those were my thoughts too knowing he played 3B. I think I read that somewhere recently about India but I’ll trust your word for it. Regarding the range given our current situation logically doesn’t it make sense to just move players around when Moose comes back with Suarez at 3B, India at SS, and Moose at 2B.
He looks to have pretty good range at 2B to me.
Speaking of range, How would you say Senzel’s range at SS would compare to the Reds’ current starting SS?
There was MUCH talk of Senzel at SS and the subtext from those in the know was “Nope.” But compared to Suarez–would he still be a “Nope.”?
I’m legitimately curious, not just bellyaching
And while at it, how does India fit into that spectrum at SS?
“RojoBenjy” if you’re asking me I’ve stated before that the chances IMO of Senzel being better at SS than Suarez are great. Suarez and Moose are going to play most of the time so you would have to choose between India and Senzel as your every day SS. India has proven himself so he pretty much stays in the lineup. That’s why I think Senzel should be ready to play anywhere needed and be in the lineup most every day. Remember he can play all three outfield spots too and to my knowledge India cannot. Certainly Farmer and Blandino or any other bench player currently on the 26 man roster should not be playing over Senzel.
Rojo – I responded to your question but it’s in moderation for some reason. No profanity. Promise. 🙂
The current shortstop can’t hit a basketball. I’ll tell you who should play SS. Anybody but Suarez. Course Suarez should not play 3rd either. He should not play at all. But Bell will never figure that one out.
And having Senzel take infield balls at 2nd makes no sense unless they move India to 3rd. I think this team is a hot mess. I dont even know what Bell has up his sleeve when Shogo comes back and it’s probably not good.
I personally think Senzel should be in the lineup wherever needed even at SS with the exception of Catcher/Pitcher of course. Use him while he’s healthy and hope he stays that way. This team is not talented enough for him to not be playing.
That’s what I mean Melvin. Senzel needs to be in the lineup but not at India’s expense. They both need to play every game.
>>> the only thing they’ve accomplished with him this year by moving him to SS is take away his bat (worse than last year)
You mean worse than last year,… when he struck out 190 times?
Pardon me. Actually, Suarez struck out only 67 times last year,..in 57 games that he played. So,….last year if he played in 162 games he would have struck out,..what? Yep,..189 times. It was the year before last that he actually struck out 189 times,..in a full season. So,..if there’s one thing you can say about Suarez,…he’s consistent.
He looks completely lost this year for the most part. The chances of him coming out of it and being a good hitter again while playing SS are slim to none IMO.
Castillo should cut off the blond locks…maybe it will change his mojo. sacrifice a chicken or maybe a goat
Interesting thought. So far they are very bad juju
Dang…2nd time taking one in the head for India
I’m in with the goat sacrifice. Burn some uniforms, too.
Guy on Twitter
“Probably a fine from @MLB upcoming for India for “scuffing up baseball with is helmet” and for Bell showing “too much emotion”
Bell tossed…he was livid
I missed it. What is the beef? Can’t watch or listen at the moment
They warned the Reds after the HBP….even though it was a Red that got beaned.
MLB is quite the hypocritical circus
If I’m India I’m going in to second hard.
Correct me if I am wrong, Doug, but didn’t India suffer a hit by pitch in the head in the minors that cost him time?
Suarez says “Hey….don’t pile up on me. Joey’s hitting .121 on the road.”
Castellanos said he’s sick of losing. I guess that means he’s somewhere else next year. If I’m tired of chicken I don’t work at KFC
See my post at the top of this thread.
MLB made it clear to Castellanos that he is not going to be allowed to fire up the Reds into a team that hates to lose. Not sure why MLB hates Cincinnati so much. The hate from NFL i can understand
So hypothetically, why not have Castillo bunt (if he can), let him start the next inning and have him hit the first batter in the backside with something soft? He gets tossed and Fulmer is ready.
Because MLB will suspend Castillo for 25 games and give Molina a medal
Now–after this Wink oppo bomb–if the club comes back to win this for India, I will be happy
You must of forgot our heavy hitters are coming up. Rally over.
next inning when the productive 6-9 hitters are up
If they end up winning due to Cardinal mistakes I think I’ll take it at this point
Winker will be the guy the Front Office will trade for a 32 year old veteran.
LOL the one time in the last 20 years they would trade a guy at peak value this is probably how they’d do it
Bunt to the left side might have been useful for Joey and the Reds there.
Votto is the one I’m disappointed in the most when it comes to hitting in to the shift. Of all people he should know better.
I bet KC so I’ve been watching them. They’re a low budget team that has some great arms in the pen and a nice lineup mixture of young/experienced & power/speed. Speed and good bullpens travel well. Living off cheap HRs does not travel well. We have good hitters, but we’re not a good hitting team. Too many pitchers mow them down 1-2-3 on 12 pitches or so. Good lineups have guys in the 7 hole that have solid 8+ pitch at-bats and grind on the opposing pitcher.
Eugenio now leading the league in Ks. Gunning for 50 HRs comes at a price. Remember the days when he was a pretty solid contact guy? He was good then.
He always leads the league in strike outs. That’s nothing new.
Sure missing a real ss. Conception , Larkin, Phillips those were the days. And a real manager, Anderson, Sweet Lou, and Dusty those were the days.
Suarez is now beyond bad; he has progressed to an embarrassment. Takes six pitches to K. How does he expect to get a hit if he never swings the bat. True, he might K swinging, but he might also accidentally make contact.
He’s out of his comfort zone in the 5 hole. Move him back to 3rd and he’ll K in 8 pitches.
Bell has got to be the worst MLB manager. A guy has 11 hits and 33 Ks and he bats in the middle of a lineup every day. One the other hand, if you are the reliever that is struggling the most, you get the ball with a 3 run lead in the 9th.
Jordan Hicks is channeling Amir Garrett
But not enough to blow the lead, shucks
That only works for our team.
There is nothing wrong with changing up the lineup.
IMO … there needs to be some guys dropped further down, if only to remind everyone that no one’s spot is set in stone forever.
However … keep Winker at leadoff. Every day he can go.
He would have been up instead of Blandino, as the potential tying run.
After that AB, Blandino still has 0 HRs on the season.
But not enough to blow the lead, shucks
News flash RLN. Naquin is pretty good. Thats 19 rbis! I think if you factor in Senzel has no HRs and Shogo had none last year then its hard to convince me that they’re better then Naquin. If you can’t get some cheapies in gabp then you have no power.
I think he can really help us if they bring back the universal DH, but he should be playing vs righties now! Senzel super utility. Joey needs time off. Suarez needs a mental break. Its not rocket science how to work Nick S into the lineup
As long as Senzel and India play every day.
Naquin has more than earned his at bats. He should platoon with Senzel. Or better yet, he should with Aquino when and if he comes back. Course fat chance of Bell realizing anything. He’s totally bewildered when it comes to managing baseball. Has no clue.
I respect you and the take … but, nah on Naquin as an everyday guy, IMO.
He has never hit the high fastball, can’t stay off it.
He got a hit today because the pitcher threw something down and in.
Today’s role is just right for him … come off bench late as PH, face a RH reliever.
Why invest significant playing time in age 30, AAAA guys?
More bad decisions based on a botched “Rebuild”.
He always leads the league in strike outs. That’s nothing new.
Geez, here comes the fireman as in Fahrenheit 451
The Molinas are doing much against Doolittle
Hmmm…power pitcher throwing 91. I wonder if that will work? Doolittle should be doing little at his house instead of starting the carousel. He’s done
Why did we bring in a LH pitcher to face the best RH hitters?
I think it’s a valid question considering how many times the manager plays matchups
His playing matchups hasn’t worked so now he’s trying reverse matchups.
Doolittle is the version of kevin Gregg back in 2015. Red’s kept running him out there until they realized he was a bad investment with his 10 era. When will they realize Doolittle is a bad investment.
No worries pitching around Votto to get the K king at the plate
Fastball up, curveball away, slider away
Ok so i’m not good at predictions. At least it wasn’t a double play
Suarez could right his season with a HR here … especially if is sparks an unlikely comeback win.
Well–even if he would have hit a HR–does that REALLY right his season?
We can all hope … he slammed his helmet down after a K today.
Maybe he feels he is jinxed at the moment … and needs something good to turn it around.
He needs to go back to 3B after maybe a 3 game benching. The pressure is mounting more and more while at SS. He just can’t handle it mentally or physically.
Fun to watch Castellanos hit. He chases some bad breaking balls sometimes, but his plate coverage is unreal and he truly hits the ball line to line with power. He could take the next step up to .950 ops borderline superstar
Suarez 0 for the series. Bench the guy for a couple of games.
Votto also 0 for series, was he not? Bench them both.
Absolutely right Suarez and Votto need some prolonged pine time.
Cue Tom Petty
Going to L.A. Coming home with a 10 game losing streak.
Like I said, the Reds will do whatever it takes to lose. I don’t have a crystal ball, but I’m pretty sure the Dodgers will annihilate them for the next 3 games. I have to just let this go. Another wasted day thinking the boys might actually win a game.
Well Another Loss.
Tough stretch going through.
Need Ace type stuff and results from Castillo.
Well onto LAD, hopefully at least compete.
Why Barnhart swung at that last pitch considering how wild that pitcher was I don’t know but oh well. On to LA. Maybe our GM will travel with the club there. That’s usually a sign of something coming. Just saying.
Rapidly becoming the Big Dead Machine! From first place to last in a week! Doesn’t look any better headed to LA to face the best pitchers in the NL.
Yep and who gives away a Cy Young pitcher. O ya anybody ever hear of a guy named Randy Johnson? He played for a minor league team called the Indianapolis Indians as did many of the Big Red Machine.