Tonight at 7:10 PM, the Cincinnati Reds (14-15) will look to win their first Ohio Cup title since 2014 when they travel north up I-71 for three games against the Cleveland Indians (17-13) this weekend. The Reds are just 23-37 all-time in Cleveland.

The Indians come in hot as they’ve won 5 straight games and 9 of their last 11. The Indians have been a two man show offensively: Jose Ramirez (156 wRC+) and Franmil Reyes (164 wRC+). They do not have another regular above average hitter in their lineup.

The Reds are very fortune that they won’t see Shane Bieber this weekend. The Reds will want to get to the Indians SP early. James Karinchak and Emmanuel Clase have allowed just 1 earned run in 29.1 innings this season. Karinchak has an unbelievable 30 strikeouts in 15.0 innings this season, and has only walked 3 batters. Fortunately for the Reds, Karinchak has pitched each of the last two days, and 4 of the last 5 (he has thrown 76 pitches this week). He has yet to pitch in 3 straight games this season, so there is a good chance he is unavailable tonight.

Starting Pitchers

Wade Miley‘s only mediocre start of the season came against the Indians on 4/18: 5.0 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 HR, 1 BB, 5 K. Miley has only allowed 3 home runs all season, but two of them came in that game to Jose Ramirez and Eddie Rosario. Miley has a career 4.95 ERA in 8 starts against the Indians (6.75 ERA in 2 starts at Progressive Field).

Wade Miley Statcast numbers

Zach Plesac is certainly happy that Joey Votto is not in the lineup. Votto has 2 bombs in 4 at-bats against Plesac. The numbers this season for Plesac might not look very good, but 12 of the 17 ER he allowed came in two starts. He has only allowed 5 ER in the other 4 starts this season. Plesac was dominant in 8 starts in 2020 with a 2.28 ERA/3.39 FIP, but got demoted at one point due to blatantly disregarding the Covid protocols. He has a career 5.11 ERA in 2 starts against the Reds. Here is a video of Castellanos homering off Pleasc last season for your viewing pleasure.

Zach Plesac Statcast numbers

Starting Lineup

Reds Indians
1. Nick Senzel (2B)
2. Jesse Winker (DH)
3. Nick Castellanos (RF)
4. Mike Moustakas (1B)
5. Eugenio Suárez (3B)
6. Tyler Naquin (CF)
7. Tucker Barnhart (C)
8. Kyle Farmer (SS)
9. Shogo Akiyama (LF)
1. Cesar Hernandez (2B)
2. Jordan Luplow (RF)
3. Jose Ramirez (3B)
4. Franmil Reyes (DH)
5. Eddie Rosario (LF)
6. Harold Ramirez (CF)
7. Josh Naylor (1B)
8. Amed Rosario (SS)
9. Austin Hedges (C)

The Reds have really mixed up their lineup with Votto out. Shogo Akiyama was activated and will make his 2021 debut batting 9th. It appears the Eugenio Suárez at SS experiment has either been ended or put on pause. Suarez has -10 outs above average this season, which is 4 more than any another player at any position. Votto being out might have been a good excuse to end the experiment. It looks like Nick Senzel is going to be playing 2B more regularly (at least vs RHP). You have to wonder what this means for Jonathan India. It seems possible that he could be sent down after the weekend when the Reds no longer have a DH/extra bat in the lineup.

Tyler Naquin will play in his first career game at Progressive Field as a visitor. Naquin played 325 career games with the Indians.

Reds pitchers obviously need to look out for Jose Ramirez and Franmil Reyes as mentioned above, but one guy specifically for Wade Miley to watch tonight is Jordan Luplow. He has a career .967 OPS in 317 PA vs LHP.

One interesting note: Josh Naylor is playing first-base for only the third time since he made that famous “Buckner” style error in Cincinnati a couple of weeks ago. The last time that he played 1B was on 4/26.

Reds bullpen watch

Today begins the brutal stretch of 17 straight days of baseball for the Cincinnati Reds, who will also play in 30 of the next 31 days. The most obvious concern with that is how the Reds bullpen will hold up. They will at least start well rested as you can see below with the usage chart.

News and Notes

The Reds defense could look different on a daily basis

Prior to the game tonight manager David Bell spoke with the media and explained that there could be a lot of movement while Joey Votto is out when it comes to who is playing what defensive position. Mike Moustakas also spoke about how versatile the team was and how that really helps make things easier.

Nick Lodolo struck out 10 in his Double-A debut

The Cincinnati Reds starting pitching on the farm has been incredible so far this season. Doug Gray noted that in the 11 starts this year for the Reds minor league starting pitchers the group has posted a 1.40 ERA in 45.0 innings with just 26 hits allowed and with 57 strikeouts. Nick Lodolo played a big role in that on Thursday night in his Double-A debut as he struck out 10 batters without a walk over 5.0 shutout innings. Lodolo has not walked a batter in his professional career and now has a 40-to-0 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

Redleg Nation Radio #374: Naughty by Nature

If you missed it, be sure to check out this week’s episode of Redleg Nation Radio where Chad Dotson and Chris Garber discuss the Joey Votto injury, the ridiculousness of Amir Garrett’s suspension, Hunter Greene’s Double-A debut and more.


The Reds have not had a .500 record in the month of May, since May 16, 2017. Today is the day that changes. Go Reds!

177 Responses

  1. Melvin

    Well, I do think Aki and Winker are both LFs with Aki having more range so I do agree that Winker should be the DH out of the two. I give DB credit for that one anyway.

  2. Sliotar

    4-8 away from GABP
    30th and dead last in road wRC+ (66)

    Home games are entertaining … but the park, IMO, distorts the realistic picture of the Reds ceiling. It’s the 81 road games that will define the Reds season.

    Only Winker is above league average on the road … Kyle “Black Hole Offensively” Farmer is higher than Suarez away from GABP. Yikes.

    Good place to try and win a series and get some balance offensively.

  3. Doug Gray

    The game will begin in a rain delay.

    • RojoBenjy

      So Doug what you’re saying is that there is still a chance for Bell to insert India at shortstop.

      (Winces and waits to be banned)

  4. MBS

    OK, Gutierrez stat line looked really good.

    6 IN 1 H 2 BB 6K on 76 pitches

    Time to bring him up, and send down Romano. He might even push Hoffman out of the rotation, but we really need another Antone like reliever. I was hoping De Leon would be that guy, but the 2nd inning was not working for him.

  5. Indy Red Man

    Cleveland has 1 great hitter and 1 great starter plus a great bullpen and we won’t see Beiber this time. The rest are mediocre at best. Reds should win this series and no excuses are acceptable! Do you want to get to .500 or not?

  6. ClevelandRedsFan

    Senzel with 109 exit velo on his groundout.

  7. TyGuy88

    Listening to 700. Bronson is a very good play by play guy. I hope they continue to give him air time.

    • RojoBenjy

      Agreed. He’s so chill, not too excited, no boring. Great stories. Like listening to him on the Jim Day Podcast.

    • RojoBenjy

      If you aren’t listening to Bronson, do yourselves a favor and switch there now

  8. Melvin

    Caught a break there. Need to take advantage.

  9. RojoBenjy

    Cy Plesac pitches his way out.

    Jesse will get him next time

  10. Melvin

    Wow. Winker just isn’t very fast. An average runner would have beat that out and produced a run. Good AB though. Oh well. On to next inning.

  11. Sliotar

    Big missed opportunity there.


  12. Indy Red Man

    Reds baseball! 1 run in 22 innings. Catch the excitement!

  13. Roger Garrett

    Cy is right.Makes the third guy in a row we can’t hit after 13 runs on Sunday.Almost seems like every time we hit a bunch of homers in a game we go several without even getting any hits.We must manufacture runs on the road and until we change at the plate we will never ever get better as a team.Wink battled and lost and thats all you can ask for right there for sure.

  14. Indy Red Man

    Guess I’m wrong on Miley! The only time he really got hit was when he was didn’t have 90-91 that day. He definitely keeps them off balance.

    • Mark Moore

      K’s, pop-ups, and grounders. I think we can handle that. That last grab and throw wasn’t to shabby either.

  15. Mark Moore

    Miley is looking pretty good tonight. Hate that one AB went so long, but I think we ride him as long as possible tonight. At least he doesn’t have to think about batting, so no “strategy” from that perspective.

  16. Melvin

    I miss not knowing Votto is coming up somewhere in the lineup. The Reds are still a better team with him in there.

  17. Melvin

    Come Suarez. Play small ball. Get the run home.

    • LDS

      Nope, a Suarez special. Wasting a lead off double?

  18. VaRedsFan

    Reds are 1st in MLB with getting a runner from 3rd home with less than 2 outs. 68%
    0-2 tonight.

    • RojoBenjy

      Wow that’s pretty impressive. It just feels like they never do i guess

  19. Melvin

    Have to guard the plate and put the ball in play with a runner on 3rd and less than two outs. We need to get better at those things….a lot better.

  20. Indy Red Man

    1st/2nd nobody out and Winker & Castellanos coming up? Don’t you have to bunt Senzel there? Could’ve been 2 runs and now we’d be happy with 1.

  21. Mark Moore

    Way to go guys. Love it when we strand runners that should have scored. Look at the good stuff; whiff at the garbage. Lather.Rinse.Repeat.

    That routine is getting very old very quickly.

  22. Old-school

    Bells lineup aint working
    Miley has a no hitter

    • Mark Moore

      To be clear, certain parts are working. Other parts are doing what we’ve come to expect them to do.

  23. Indy Red Man

    So a team with 1.5 good relievers plays 17 games in 17 days with 4 being in Coors. I suggest we start hitting or the Cards are going to bury them quick.

    • Roger Garrett

      Curious Indy who is the .5 guy.

      • Indy Red Man

        Antone is .9
        Sims/Hembree/Hendrix are .2 each)))

  24. Melvin

    Aki doesn’t look too bad for just coming back.

  25. Indy Red Man

    Decent at-bat by Shogo. Its good to have him back! You can tell he’s got an idea up there.

  26. Roger Garrett

    Somebody please send message to the Reds dugout.Memo should read.Runs are important and can’t win unless we score.Put ball in play at all costs when runner is at third with less then 2 outs and punchouts are not acceptable in this situation especially with bat resting on shoulder.

  27. Melvin

    Suarez looks A LOT better at 3B. Just leave him there.

    • MBS

      I’m fine with Suarez at 3B, in fact it’s probably the best position for him. I am not fine with Farmer / Blandino playing SS. We have the same problem we had going into the offseason last year. We have no Short Stop! Thanks Bob

    • LDS

      Suarez looks a lot better when he hits which he isn’t doing regardless of where he plays. He’s hitting worse than Chris Davis did after his MVP year.

    • Melvin

      I hear ya both and everyone else. I agree but if he is going to play that’s where it should be unless he becomes a first baseman too. LOL Maybe this will help him relax a little and hit better. Can’t hurt most likely. I’m still in the “try India at SS camp”. 🙂

      • LDS

        I’ll stay in the trade Suarez camp. He needs a change of scenery and so do the Reds. Still think the Rockies would entertain a straight up trade for Story. They won’t hold on to him anyhow. Big Bob would just need to okay a bit of spending. And there’s the rub.

      • Melvin

        Well we have plenty of 3B guys that’s for sure. LOL It would have to be a miracle for Big Bob to pay the money though. If he would I’d go for it for sure. Suarez is not making that much money comparatively speaking but it would offset some of it. The guys who would play 3B wouldn’t make that much.

  28. RojoBenjy

    Really good stuff from Bronson. Great color. So natural

    Top of the 6th. Time to put a pleat in Plesac, fellas!

    • Roger Garrett

      He got the top of our order in 7 pitches.I was going to stay around and watch Bell do his double switches but just don’t have it in me tonight so I am gone.Go Reds.rr

  29. Melvin

    This is the kind of game that we have the most trouble with. Kind of like the playoffs last year. We have to learn how to win in situations like this. It could take us from an 80 win team to a 90 win team.

  30. Indy Red Man

    Bell failing to bunt Senzel with 1st/2nd & nobody out could cost us the game. He makes obscure double switches, but can’t read the game when its right in front of him. Indians don’t have a ton of offense so it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out that 2 runs might win the game and you absolutely cannot get behind them late with their pen. A 1-0 lead is huge in this situation.

  31. Mark Moore

    Small sample and it’s just my eye test, but Senzel doesn’t look all that comfortable at 2B.

    • RojoBenjy

      He played 2B all of AAA until the very end.

      Too soon to make the call. Mostly emotional because it took away Miley’s glory

      • RojoBenjy

        Well Miley issues a BB

        Magic spell broken

      • Mark Moore

        I forgot about that Rojo. Thanks for the reminder.

  32. MBS

    Really annoys me when announcers talk about perfect games or no hitters.

    • RojoBenjy

      It annoys me more when they talk about so-and-so from the opposition that is up with bases loaded and say “the last time player X hit a grand slam was—“

      Because you know said player is about to go yard


      • RojoBenjy

        At this point just hoping for the W

    • RojoBenjy

      Tonight he is—through 6 at least.

      C’mon Reds get runs!!!

      Just the name Plesac makes me ill. So whiny—let’s get it! LOL

      *disclaimer just kidding Plesac

  33. Sliotar

    Great job by Miley … but hopefully that’s it.

    Don’t really want to see him taking on Reyes and Ramirez a 3rd time, when 1 run could win this.

    • Mark Moore

      I’ve got mixed feelings at this point. He’s been pretty efficient so far, but I get your point.

    • RojoBenjy

      But—do you trust who DB will bring in from the bullpen?

    • LDS

      Leave him in. He has been about as good as anyone the Reds have this year. We sure don’t want Romano in at this point. The Mets fired their hitting coach. Maybe the Reds should do the same. Can’t really point to any big successes.

    • MBS

      I’m all in on Miley for another inning or 2

      • Melvin

        Considering our BP let him pitch until he proves he can’t.

      • Indy Red Man

        1 run in 26 innings. Alrighty then. Didn’t we score a total of 1 run that weekend in Seattle when Junior came back? Tonite…they’re not even squaring anything up except for Castellanos double. Miley has been even better, but I’m guessing its not going to end well.

    • AllTheHype

      84 pitches, no hitter, and a weak bullpen. He aint coming out.

    • JayTheRed

      I have to say Miley has done a way better job pitching this season so far than I thought he would. Honestly I do like how fast he works too.

    • Indy Red Man

      Scrolling MLB futures on my betting apps for Miley to win Cy Young)))))))))))))

  34. Sliotar

    He got through the 7th unscathed. Very well done.

    • Mark Moore

      And his glove has helped his own cause. Love it when that happens.

  35. Mark Moore

    Still dealing through 7. Time for the offense to show up. Really can’t afford to go to the 10th on this one despite our track record in extras.

  36. Melvin

    Might be a good idea to score a run or two. haha

  37. RojoBenjy

    time for one of the hitters to make a statement. Someone has to put the team on his back

  38. LDS

    95 pitches with a no hitter. Does Bell leave him in?

  39. JB

    Great pitching game. Have to hand it to the pitchers. Cant win all games 12-11. Have to win the 1-0 ,2-1games as well.

      • RojoBenjy

        And you’re right, hats off to both pitchers

    • JB

      If I remember right Reds offered Cueto a contract but he turned it down. Either way Cueto hasnt done much since he left Cincy. He had a 18 win season and little after that. So Either way Red’s fans would be still Bellyaching.

      • RojoBenjy

        But wasn’t that after they paid Homer?

        So they had no money to really attract Cueto

  40. RojoBenjy

    this team needs to dig deep next inning for their pitcher who is leaving his all on the diamond. Hope they can do it

  41. RedsGettingBetter

    At this moment on top 8th, Reds have scored 1 run in the last 26 innings

  42. Indy Red Man

    Homer Bailey….parlayed both no-no’s into about $50 mil each. Not bad work for a below average pitcher. He did pitch a good game against SF in the playoffs so I’ll give him that.

    • RojoBenjy

      Reminds me of the quote someone posted earlier about Bronson where he said (i paraphrase badly), “the GM never comes to you and says, ‘which guy should i extend? Homer or Cueto?’”

      The subtext of that quote, which was much longer, was that “you dope, it should have been Cueto all the way!!!” At least that’s how i choose to read it LOL

  43. Melvin

    If DB has a small ball playbook he better dust it off and use it now.

    • RojoBenjy

      Step number one: Execute a double switch

  44. Melvin

    Best speed on the team. I good bunt would have been good.

  45. Melvin

    Good AB by Casty. Made things happen.

  46. Mark Moore

    Shift supported run … that’s the break we needed.

    • RojoBenjy

      Sweet music.

      About time the shift blows up in someone’s face

      • RojoBenjy

        Moose with another shift killer!!!!!

  47. Mark Moore

    Wow … the baseball gods are showing us a little love this inning.

    And now the pitcher is rattled.

    • JayTheRed

      They better give him a chance to do the No Hitter… I’ll hate Bell if he doesn’t

  48. MBS

    Man don’t get Miley up to bat, lol , I actually want some offensive outs

      • RojoBenjy

        And aren’t we all thankful that we are!

  49. Sliotar

    If Miley gets his no-hitter, he owes thanks to Francona.

    I have Clase on my season-long fantasy team … and did not put him lineup tonight because he had pitched 3 of last 4 days.

    Doesn’t have it tonight, for sure.

    • RojoBenjy

      Well—Clase’s D didn’t do him any favors. However he did balk that’s on him

    • Mark Moore

      So he did … went with a 101 mph fastball and hit it where they weren’t.

  50. Mark Moore

    It took 9 innings, but we’re in this to win it now. And Miley has to be totally pumped. Let’s give him a couple more!

  51. ClevelandRedsFan

    Indians Bill Buckner-ed last time. Now they’re making Bill Buckner look like a gold glover.

    Anyone else catch Winker jumping for joy on the balk? Amazing.

    • RojoBenjy

      Uh oh Wink better watch it. Michael Hill is watching

  52. Indy Red Man

    “Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.” ? Napoleon Bonaparte.

    This is fun! The team on a 9 of 11 winning streak has made the key mistakes.

  53. VaRedsFan

    Miley has had nothing but stress free innings…no reason to pull him….Throw the pitch count meter in that lake outside the stadium.

    • Mark Moore

      Pretty much cruised with the exception of that one long AB that ended in a K anyway.

  54. Mark Moore

    Disappointing night from “Henny” again

    • RojoBenjy

      Um, yep.

      At the very least, Blandino walks occasionally

      • RojoBenjy


        We’re on double secret probation from mentioning that India can play baseball.

        LOL only kidding, Doug. It’s Friday night after all

  55. Mark Moore

    Did Naquin just spit in his own helmet???

  56. MBS

    @Rojo there goes Calling out the other teams batter slumps. Thanks Sadak

    • RojoBenjy

      Wait i’m listening only. The no-no is official. To what do you refer?

  57. Mark Moore

    And it comes down to this … may be the most exciting game we’ve seen this year. C’mon, Wade! See this through.

  58. JB

    I wonder if Tucker took those pitches for strikes for his pitcher, so he can get back out there. I wouldnt put it past a catcher doing that for his battery mate.

    • Mark Moore

      Actually that last one was pretty good.

  59. Melvin

    Reminds me of Tom Browning especially the pace.

    • JayTheRed

      + Infinity !!!!!

      What a great day in Reds history.

  60. Melvin

    Wade Miely a no hitter. Who would have thunk it? 🙂

    • Mark Moore

      Not I. I had him in the bullpen as the preferred spot.

  61. Mark Moore

    WOW!!! What did we just see???

    Congrats to Wade.

    And the Tribe gets no-hit 2x in the first 31 games.

  62. RojoBenjy

    This just in from my sis:

    Wade Miley in danger of suspension for inciting benches-clearing celebration after pitching no-hitter

    Man when will Reds players EVER learn?

  63. RedsGettingBetter

    No-no. It is a Great gem for Miley… wow I did not expect it tonight…

  64. Mark Moore

    Only his 2nd complete game shut out … what a way to add that second one.

  65. VaRedsFan

    Awesome Wade! Who needs a pitch count?

    • Mark Moore

      Ultimately not that bad anyway. Under 115, wasn’t it? And he threw “easy” most of the night.

      • RojoBenjy


        May need an arm transplant

        Dr. Andrews on standby

  66. RojoBenjy

    Enjoy the reward for not Clete-ing tonight, mis amigos

    • RojoBenjy

      Wade did his best to Bell-proof the win

      Having a DH really helped because it obviates the double switch

  67. Mark Moore

    And a stick-on tattoo for his son … that’s a class act in my book.

    Good night friends. It’s been an absolute pleasure this evening.

      • RojoBenjy

        Nope Sean Manaea walked one so far…

        Good pitching in the atmosphere tonight

      • RojoBenjy

        He yielded a hit. So this night is Miley’s alone!

  68. Melvin

    Maybe the most amazing thing is that a (Reds) pitcher actually threw a complete game. 🙂

    • RojoBenjy

      I still think part of that is because the double switch was out of bounds

  69. RiverCity Redleg

    Congrats to Wade! That was fun to watch. Hopefully that’s the boost the team needs to go on a serious run. Either way, that was great.

  70. TR

    After a rain delay. Historic. Congratulations to Wade Miley.