It was another struggle on the mound for Luis Castillo, and the bullpen didn’t help much either as the Cincinnati Reds fell to the Milwaukee Brewers on Sunday by a score of 9-4.

Final R H E
Milwaukee Brewers (23-23)
9 9 1
Cincinnati Reds (20-25)
4 7 0
W: Boxberger (1-1) L: Castillo (1-7)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

A lot is being asked of the offense lately, and being behind 3-0 before you get to the plate for the first time probably doesn’t help. It was 5-0 before the team got on the board with a 456-foot solo home run by Jesse Winker that clanged off of the power stacks in right-center. He just missed hitting the sign that would have won someone a truck.

Two innings later Cincinnati scratched together another run when Shogo Akiyama came through with a pinch hit double and scored on a Nick Castellanos double. They weren’t done threatening as Tyler Stephenson walked and then Tucker Barnhart was hit by a pitch to load the bases. But the threat was just that as Eugenio Suárez struck out to strand the runners.

Nick Castellanos added a double in the 7th inning that saw him overtake the National League lead in average from Jesse Winker by a point. That lead didn’t last long as Winker singled in the 9th to jump back up with a .355 average. Castellanos must have done the math on the fly and decided he was going to follow with a home run and take the lead right back with a .356 mark, making it 9-4 in the process. Tyler Naquin kept the game going with a double into the gap, but Tyler Stephenson grounded out to end the game.

The Pitching

Another day and another struggle on the mound for Luis Castillo. He gave up a leadoff single to Kolten Wong and then with two outs he gave up a single to Avisail Garcia. That was followed by back-to-back walks and then a single that made it 3-0 before the Reds even came to the plate.

After a 1-2-3 2nd inning the struggles came back for Castillo as he walked Christian Yelich to start the inning and then gave up a 2-run homer to Avisail Garcia to pad the Milwaukee lead and make it 5-0. He would make it through the 4th and 5th innings before turning the game over to the bullpen in the 6th.

Michael Feliz took over and walked the first batter he faced, then gave up a 1-out single to put runners on 1st and 2nd. David Bell went to the bullpen to bring in Sean Doolittle to face the lefty portion of the Brewers lineup. It didn’t go as planned as Kolten Wong tripled in two runs and Christian Yelich drove him in and it was 8-2 before another pitching change took place. Ashton Gougeau came on to end the pain with a pop up to second base. He threw two perfect innings after that. Brad Brach came on for the 9th and served up a home run to Christian Yelich that landed somewhere in Tennessee that made it 9-2.

Notes Worth Noting

Jeses Winker and Nick Castellanos both raised their OPS over the 1.080 mark, with Winker sitting at 1.096 and Castellanos at 1.085 on the season. Now if only they could get some help.

Sean Doolittle has allowed 10 of the 12 inherited baserunners he’s entered the game with this season to score. That’s 83.3%. The league average is 35% this season.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds at Washington Nationals

Tuesday May 25th, 7:05pm ET

Tyler Mahle (2-2, 4.20 ERA) vs Max Scherzer (4-2, 2.24 ERA)

97 Responses

  1. Mark Moore

    Could not be a more appropriate headline … Wink and Casty producing at a monster pace. Our catching tandem is supporting that. Few else are to any great extent, especially the pitching core.

    Swept by the Giants. Barfed up a lung to the Bernie Brewers. How long dos Bell last even in this organization?

    • Melvin

      Until his contract runs out. With Big Bob calling the shots maybe even longer. Not exactly an encouraging thought I know. Krall has to hate his job. He must feel helpless at times.

      • JayTheRed

        Williams was smart to leave when he did.

    • greenmtred

      The last straw for me was when Bell pitched such a bad first inning that the Reds–particularly with only two hitters really producing–were already out of the game…oh, wait….

    • burtgummer01

      And again 0 playoff wins since moneybags Bob took over,and only 3 playoff appearances.Reds record the last 7 years 469-608
      Open your eyes kid

  2. TR

    The 1-6 homestand. The Reds are going ….

  3. Old-school

    Reds 1-6 on the home stand despite incredible performances from Winker and Castellanos. Season high 5 under .500

    Castillo and Suarez not getting it done
    Aging Votto out and hurt. Senzel and Moose injured. No credible MLB shortstop again.

    This season is on the brink. Road trip against Scherzer and Strasburg and then Cubs

    Id like to see Jose Garcia inserted as the every day SS and Tony Santillan given the ball every 5th day. Jeff Hoffman to the bullpen.

    Nick Krall needs to step in and lead this franchise and roster

    • JayTheRed

      I am with you on your choices for moves to make. If we are going to sink lets sink and see what some of these younger guys can do.

      Suarez – I just don’t know what they need to do with him.. As soon as he starts looking better he falls back down again.
      Castillo – I feel like they need to somehow put him on the IL or maybe even take him out of the rotation at this point. I haven’t seen anything obvious other than he breaking stuff doesn’t seem to have that crazy bite it had the past few years.
      Dolittle – Seems to be ok if he gets a fresh inning to work with but coming in with guys on has not been good.

      • Tomn

        Suarez: Bench him.
        Castillo: BP or AAA
        Hoffman: BP

        Bring up Garcia and put him at SS. At worse, we only get great D.
        Bring up Santillan or the top SP whoever that is at AAA. Or even consider Lodolo.

        That was easy.

  4. Gene Kehoe

    Interesting stat on Do Little…so why is he still being brought in with men on base? This management team is a league-wide joke!

    • JB

      Because that’s one stat Bell doesnt look at. Doolittle reminds me so much of kevin Gregg years ago.

  5. Steve Schoenbaechler

    If I was the Reds, I would either look to lock Winker and Mahle up long term, or trade them off for several high level prospects. I would also add a couple of years to Gray’s contract.

    No extension for Castillo until he convinces people he can work out his problems.


    I wanted to say, and I think I speak for all of us, and all of us should be in agreement, that Doug Gray, you do a GREAT JOB, giving us the recap of all the Reds games. I know it is very tough, given the Reds struggles this year, but whatever happens the rest of the year with the Reds, irregardless….Thank You!

  7. Dennis Westrick

    Once again, poor pitching in the form of ill-timed walks! Brewers had 9 runs on 9 hits! Reds – 4 runs on 7 hits, 9 men LOB and 1 for 11 with RISP! Stats don’t lie!

  8. JB

    Guys in the bullpen just cant put good outings back to back. Just when you think they have a good 5-6 guys and then they stink again. Doolittle has no business being on this team. He is terrible and the statistics show it. Pretty soon the opposition will intentionally walk Winker and Castellanos and take their chances with the rest of the team. They need to find it and fast.

  9. Chris

    I’m wondering if this group has a run in it – but I just don’t see how that happens without better starting pitching. There’s enough talent on the roster to allow you to squint and see a playoff team (especially in the NL Central), but they’re just not getting what they need out of too many spots. I remain convinced that by dealing Castellanos, Gray, Miley, and Moustakas in July, the Reds can paper over some holes, restock the minor league system, and still have enough talent left over to be competitive in 2022. It requires bold and decisive action… unfortunately, my fear is that we’ll get timidity and equivocation and end up standing pat, finish 77-85, lose Castellanos and Barnhart, and remain saddled with Mouse and Gray in decline.

    This roster is too old. It needs to win now or it needs to break up and get younger and less expensive.

    • DataDumpster

      That’s the sad but best advice I’ve heard yet. Deal some talent, offload some dead wood and reconfigure this horribly unbalanced team. The loss of key players for nothing and the record you mentioned is at high risk otherwise. Finally, don’t forget to throw the Bell out with the bath water.

      • Tom Reeves

        Agreed: If this team is under .500 at the break, Castellanos has to be traded. I hate that but he will absolutely take his option to walk and get $$$, as he should.

        Sonny Gray’s contract is pretty good for the Reds. I likely would not trade him unless it was for a total haul.

        Moose probably gets traded. Miley too.

        Senzel can move to 3rd next year. Hopefully Jose Garcia will be ready for short stop. I think India can end up handling 2nd. And a Votto/Stephenson platoon at first might be the best option.

        The outfield will still have Winker, Akiyama, and Naquin.

    • Tim Odeen

      I don’t think Castellanos will walk with the possibility of a work stoppage. It’s very risky. He has guaranteed money coming by picking up his option.

      • Doug Gray

        I think it will depend on how his season goes. If he hits .330 with 30 home runs it’s hard to believe he wouldn’t get a better deal than what he’s owed the rest of his Reds deal.

    • VegasRed

      You are correct Chris. Brewers have much better pitching and more effective offense (not the explosiveness of the reds but better professional hitting). Cubs are not great but better in all areas than the Reds, especially manager. Cardinals are a complete team and at least 15-20 games better than reds. They have an elite closer, HOF catcher, better offense throughout lineup, much better pitcher, vastly superior FO and on the field management. So 2021 Reds are going nowhere. Happy talk from Castellini, Krall and tinker bell (pun intended) is just sillier than Baghdad Bob.

      There is young talent on its way but it will take a bona fide baseball executive to build on it and transform reds into a winner. So no chance of that happening in cincy under current ownership.

  10. Roger Garrett

    Team is made up of way too many outfielders and third baseman to compete this year.That was done last year in hopes of winning.Did it again this year with the play of Naquin earning him a spot and India earning a spot.All 5 outfielders,6 with Aquino are better hitters then the guys in the infield but you can only play 3 and that problem will not go away.The infield is a mess offensively and defensively right now with all the 3rd baseman playing out of position and none of them hitting.India is the youngest with the most upside but he is getting caught up in the numbers crunch and Bell’s little league everybody must play style.Pen is full of B performers who only pitch when we are behind and the A pen only pitches when we are tied or ahead.Lost in all of this is that its really just a 5 inning game like it was today and enter the B performers down 3 and quickly it goes to down 7.In addition our manager runs a scripted game full of lefty on lefty or right vs righty and good relievers only pitch when ahead.Doesn’t mind setting a player after a good game at the plate just because the script says he can’t hit a lefty or a righty.I could go on and on but I will say this in defense of Bell.Maybe nobody else could win with this roster and maybe we just expect to much from him and this team.I think we have talent and some young talent but I just see us in 4th all year in a weak division.

    • Old-school

      Pretty accurate
      Id call up garcia and start him tuesday at SS india 2b and Stephenson first with Senzel 3b and naquin CF until moose is healthy. Suarez can sit a few games.

  11. Klugo

    Send him to the minors already. I mean… seriously. I read somewhere we are 1-9 in Groovy’s starts. 19-16 otherwise.

  12. Doc

    I look at the moves they make and what the roster and line up look like and I conclude management has packed it in for 2021. We’ll be traveling in a couple of months and are changing our route to scratch Cincy and add Louisville. Possibly could see some entertaining baseball.

    • Klugo

      I think the lineups are really more of a product of all the injuries. No Votto, Senzel, Moose will do that. The rotation and pitching in general is a different story. And of course there’s the SS thing that will haunt us all season.

      • Tomn

        I think Garcia is the SS NOW. He’s hitting well over 300 last i checked. I realize this is AA but from what I can tell that’s a lot better than anyone expected. Anyway, his D is better than anyone we’ve got up here now. Why wait? Or maybe Rodriguez. Since he’s at AAA and doing well.

    • Jim Walker

      The Reds real rising talent is much more in Chattanooga than Louisville as I type this but who can say whether most of these guys will be in Chatt./ Louisville or perhaps even with the Reds in a couple of months.

  13. realist

    The trade idea has to be nixed though cause with the guys running the Reds now they will get taken. There really isn’t any hope Reds = Pirates. Bottom feeders the both of them. We could always hope the franchise gets sold and the new owner hires a good management team. Somebody has to be a perennial loser for every good franchise like the Dodger, Yankees and Cardinals.

  14. Jeff

    Great Job as usual Doug! That said, I’m done spending my time watching incompetent management run this team into the ground. Today is my last reds game for a while. Cheers!!

  15. DaveCT

    I suspect this has been discussed and I likely missed it, while avoiding things during the recent misery. But, i am incredibly offended that Big Bob took a victory lap in his golf cart for his 55th anniversary before Saturday’s game. Sorta says it all to me. We dilute our bullpen and replace with reclamation projects. We fail to acquire a SS, after we let one walk in 2020. On and on. It’s just astounding and an embarrassment.

  16. Max BRAGG

    Reds fans are starting to see the TRUTH this team needs leadership, and that starts at the TOP! Until they are held accountable nothing will change on the field. Suarez is a complete failure and should be dropped in lineup. Stephenson is not ready for 3-4-5.

  17. B-town fan

    The question is has Eugenio Suárez become Dan Uggla his performance is becoming more than just a long slump, stretching through last season and well into this season.

    The pitching, who would have seen this coming especially the starting pitching, yea they lost there ace to free agency but the top three, you think would be a very strong core after last years performance.

    • DaveCT

      If they want to win, Geno sits when Moose or Senzel returns.

      When Votto returns, Naquin and Senzel platoon, or India doesn’t play. Or both.

      If they want to keep Nick C., DJ, and Boddy, they will need to pony up, or suffer key defections.

      Who, of competitive ML players, would want to join anninept, sinking ship?

      A: No one.

      Like 2021.

  18. Slicc50

    Yep……Luis is right there on the verge of turning it around! Anytime now!

  19. Hanawi

    Worst part is that the Reds have had a pretty easy schedule. Already played the 3 teams with worse records than them 16 times in 45 games. Only have 16 games left with those teams the rest of the year, mostly against the Pirates.

  20. BatsLeftThrowsRight

    The team is lifeless, the whole thing has become depressing to watch. Always falling behind early is really getting old. Off to DC, to face some pretty good pitching.

    This team has entered free-fall. The only question remaining is how soon you pull the trigger on the trade/rental of Castellanos. A fire sale should follow. Maybe Toronto will take Votto at twenty percent of the remaining part of his contract, Reds pay the rest.

    • Scotly50

      The Reds definitely will not let Votto go and pay for him to play elsewhere. They would not even pay for a low price shortstop.

  21. LuciusRuber

    “Baseball breaks your heart. It’s designed to break your heart.”
    Bart Giamatti

  22. Grand Salami

    This was the only game of series that I missed. Please get someone in front of these two.

    Shogo, India, heck even Barnhart and his OBP. They are nowhere near top run producers and that’s a byproduct of this construction, nothing else.

    • Slicc50

      I agree. Those 2 need to be 3-4 in this lineup! Get your higher obp guys in front of them. Imagine the rbi totals Winker and Nick C. would rack up with the lineup constructed this was!

  23. Scott C

    I don’t like to rag on any player but boy does Suarez need to sit a few days. Personally I don’t think he is ever going to be the hitter he was that one year. He is trying to hit the ball out every at bat instead of making good solid contact, today was the second time this week he has come to the plate with the bases loaded, a single in either caee could have been the turning point in either game, instead we get a pop up and a strike out.

    • MuddyCleats

      Before and after every game in the cage working on hitting backside. Guy can’t handle a pitch on outer 1/2 of the plate, yet takes a pitch middle in or jams himself by leaning over to protect against low and away. Sit on middle / middle in & hack! Work tail off before and after game on a 2 strike swing going the other way. Put ball on a tee off the right foot – hit the other way. Soft toss low and away & parachute CB, let the ball travel, and hit it the other way. Early BP, work on 2 strike swing going the other way! If you R not willing to do that – grab some bench! Question is, R Reds helping Suarez w/ any of this?? I don’t see any reporting on it so it makes you wonder??? Dittos on Castillo

  24. Indy Red Man

    This year is over. Arizona is 5-1 against us and 13-29 vs everyone else. No reason whatsoever to think they’ll be ready to compete next year either.

    2023. Thats the new target. Deal Castellanos if he won’t take your best offer. Sonny will be 34 in 2023 so deal him too. Find a way to give Moose away too.

    I’d be able to find a place for Naquin and Lorenzen even though they won’t have a ton of time left after 2023. Naquin could help with the universal DH thats most likely coming and he fits gabp. Lorenzen is obviously versatile and might be able to handle alot of different roles. I don’t know why he couldn’t work on a put away pitch like Kevin Gausman? He’s always had the arm.

    Core of Winker, Stephenson, India, Garcia, Greene, Lodolo, and Antone. Add to that some young talent from savvy trades and they might be watchable. This dumpster fire is not.

    • JayTheRed

      Savy trades… Lol… This is the Reds we are talking about.

      • Indy Red Man

        Well evidently the positive returns ended in 2020, but they got Suarez and Castillo for next to nothing. The Pads got Trent Grisham for next to nothing from Milw. Sometimes it works out.

      • Hanawi

        Yeah. Best not to look at how some of the prospects they’ve traded away in the last 3-4 years are doing. Downs, Gray, Trammell, Naughton, Siri, Moss, Fairchild are all at AAA and many are playing very well.

      • Indy Red Man

        Well Trammell was supposed to be a star and he was Suarez-like for the Ms. I supposed 1-2 of those guys could break out, but I doubt it. They just draft poorly

    • Indy Red Man

      I forgot Mahle too as part of the core. You could do worse then Antone, Hunter Greene, Mahle, and Lodolo as 4/5 of your rotation.

      • CI3J

        And Santillan.

        The Reds 2023 core, as I see it right now, is this:

        1B Winker
        2B India
        SS Garcia
        3B Senzel
        C Stephenson
        LF ????
        CF ????
        RF ????


        SP Lodolo
        SP Greene
        SP Santillan
        SP Antone
        SP Mahle

        Of course, we don’t know if all these prospects will actually pan out at the MLB level, but the bottom line is, anyone that is not part of that 2023 core needs to be traded NOW with the eye to getting more pieces to compete in 2023. I said they should have done this before the season even began, and there are some on this site who shouted me down saying this team is good enough to compete. And my response has always been “Are you satisfied with just competing… Or do you want to win the World Series?” Because I don’t think there is ANYONE who would have said this team is good enough to win the World Series. And if it isn’t, then what’s the point?

        Tear it all down and make the trades needed to shore up the 2023 team. I don’t care if the Reds go don’t win another game between now and Opening Day 2023, but as long as I know they have those pieces in place to field a young, talented, exciting team in 2023, I will be satisfied. I will take the potential of a young, exciting team over the known commodities of decent but aging players any day.

        Trade Castillo. Trade Gray. Trade Castellanos. Trade Miley. Trade Moose. Trade Suarez (selling low, but what can you do at this point?). Trade Akiyama. Trade Barnhart. Trade Naquin. Trade Lorenzen. Trade Garrett. Anyone who is going to be 31 or older by Opening Day 2023 has no place on this team. Then with Votto’s money off the books in 2024 and the minor leagues overflowing with talent, this team will be set to seriously challenge for a championship from 2024 onward.

        But of course, the Reds won’t do this.

    • Scott C

      Let’s not forget that 1/3 of the starting lineup is on the IL right now. Bring those three back and Stephenson moves down in the order as does Barnhart. And again the Reds have got almost nothing from Suarez.

      • MuddyCleats

        Let’s be totally honest, other Wink, Naquin and Nick, Reds haven’t gotten much out of anyone else AB! However, Suarez has put up better numbers than anyone else except those 3…….those R the facts. I agree his approach is atrocious, but at least he is available & willing to try

      • Grand Salami

        What numbers? Cumulative stats don’t mean much when you are negative WAR on the season

      • west larry

        Has the team done any intensive look at Suarez’s eyes? He’s fallen off a cliff since 2019-pay the best eye guy to find out if Suarez’s eyes are okay. If his eyes are fine, trade him for a bag of baseballs. Bring Garcia up. He is a great defensive shortstop, and can probably hit more than Suarez now, sans the power. Big Bob, break the piggy bank and offer Castellanos monster contract to waive his options and sign for three more years. If he declines, trade him NOW. Pull Castillo from his starting pitching role. Bring up a couple of the kid pitchers and let them pitch. This season is lost, try to prepare for 2022 and beyond.

      • Scott C

        Muddy Cleats, I don’t know what team you are watching but Suarez is hitting worse than almost all of MLB players, there are pitchers that are hitting better than Geno.

  25. Slicc50

    I can’t help but wonder what has happened to Luis Castillo. I can remember other seasons where he started out rough but got it together as the season went on. I don’t see that this year though. He seems to be afraid to throw strikes. For good reason, they get crushed! Has he gotten caught up in the “spin rate” craze or what? Is it hurting his pitches? Even his change up is being crushed this year. I can’t recall another pitcher that has fallen quite as far as he has in such a short period of time. Unless they were injured. They say he is healthy, so what can it be? Tipping pitches?

    • MBS

      He’s got to be giving something away, but it’s worse than that, he leaves too many pitches over the middle. I assume it’s a mechanical issue, like Garrett had. Hopefully someone on the Reds picks up on it soon. We can’t afford to basically forfeit 20% of our games.

  26. Rednat

    looks like it will be another lost season. yes, there has been a lot of these now spanning 2 decades. i think all we can do as fans is to continue to show up to games like we are and demanding more out of ownership. eventually if this losing continues, the national media will take notice as they did with the bengals and wouldn’t you know it Mike Brown at least started to invest a little more into winning!

  27. Nelson COBLE

    So, is Castillo still getting close? Give me a break. This manager can’t make out a logical line up to save his life. This is embarrassing. Shogo gets 3 hits and a game and sits for four games , except for pinch hitting. He is a lead off hitter and center fielder. He is the only outfielder who can make the key plays in the outfield. We have been sold a bill of goods that the pitching coach is a pitcher whisperer. Many look horrible.

    Major changes are needed from the top down.

    • Jimbo44CN

      Yes, and Suarez needs and eye doctor, a smaller lighter bat, and a flatter swing. Doubt it’s going to happen, but I think it’s time he spent some time in Triple A. Can’t hurt.

  28. GreatRedLegsFan

    I seriously doubt that another manager could have done significantly better under such circumstances, where key players expected to lead the team have underperformed to say the least (Castillo & Suarez), several regulars have hit the IL (Lorenzen, Votto, Moustakas & Senzel), the bullpen have just been improvised and no SS by trade was allocated during offseason despite plenty of options. I just hope that opportunities will be given during the rest of the season to allow the new generation of players taking over.

    • Indy Red Man

      Completely agree. Bell quickly pulled Garrett out of high leverage. He’s giving Stephenson a shot at 1B and in the middle of the lineup. All he can do is hope Suarez and Castillo get it going. Anyone can see how Votto/Moose’s replacements are strugglling. If we get 7 hits then Winker/Castellanos have 4-5 of them. He probably will pull Castillo pretty soon, but it won’t matter. The season will be over by the time we finish 4 in SD in mid-June.

      What manager would thrive without a SS and when a key starter/hitter have both settled in as the worst player at their position in the NL (or mlb?). The key for Bell’s future would be how the young guys perform moving forward when/if they get to play.

      • Roger Garrett

        I agree with your last sentence and that is why I stay so frustrated.We are not going anywhere as a team until the big money comes off the books.In the meantime I know we have to ride out Moose,Suarez and Joey and however they may perform also.There is no excuse however that this year barring injury that India,Senzel,TySteve and even Naquin don’t get 450 to 500 at bats.Tired also of just trying guys out at short so bring up a true shortstop and lets move on.Who cares if he hits less then 200 cause so are Suarez and Farmer and neither of them have a future at short.For me the Reds just seem to try and fit square pegs in to round holes year after year and never appear to have a clear direction.I said this yesterday in that I don’t know if Bell or any other manage could win with this team and I meant it.My problem is trying to play everybody is not a plan nor a direction.Bringing up position players and giving them a start or signing guys off the waiver wire and pitching them immediately reminds me of kids when they get a new toy.Develop a plan stick to it and go forward.

  29. Tom Reeves

    I’m starting to wonder if Caleb Cotham was the guy holding the entire pitching staff together.

    • JB

      Or Bauer. Bauer was always talking pitching to everyone. Amazing the pitching guru couldn’t figure out Garrett but Miley could. The bullpen is trash and Castillo is as well. The only thing reliable by the whole pitching staff is the walk. They are all pretty darn good at that.

  30. Reddawg2012

    I’m usually the last person to suggest a rebuild…but it might be time to tear it down. Even if everyone gets healthy and things start going our way, this is a .500 team at best. Trade anyone who isn’t part of the future core (Castellanos, Moose, Gray, etc.), sign Winker long term, and focus on competing in 23/24 once Lodolo and Greene are ready to roll. The half in/half out thing (like 2014-2017) never works and only delays the inevitable.

    It’s a huge bummer that Covid ruined what could have finally been a really great season last year, but it is what it is.

    • TR

      If not a rebuild to install the young core, IMO the top need is a new principal owner of the Reds. But that takes a billionaire with ties to the Metro Cincy area. Not so easy to find.

  31. Hotto4Votto

    I’m not really upset or surprised this is where we find the Reds a little over a quarter of the season in. This was always a team that needed a lot of things to go right, constructed on a lot of hope. Not having Votto, Moose, or Senzel consistently over the last few weeks coinciding with a slide is understandable. It’s not like any of them were playing great, but they’re better than the alternatives replacing them. They still offered some protection and help to Winker and Castellanos.
    It’ll be interesting to see how Votto comes back. He had an interrupted and truncated ST, and started out predictably slow. He was turning things around but will he be able to pick back up, or will it take a while? I’d guess there will be an adjustment period.
    I’d like to believe that Senzel just needs consistent time and he’ll be a good hitter. He was in the minors and has shown flashes in the majors. Unfortunately he’s not been able to stay on the field, at all, during his time with the Reds. Infield, outfield, on the base paths, it doesn’t seem to matter and the injuries find him.
    I keep waiting for Suarez and Castillo to turn it around and become the players we’ve come to know over the past few seasons. I’m starting to be doubtful it comes. Castillo may need time in AAA to sort himself out. Suarez, I guess you keep trying to move him down the lineup, but it’s hard to move him much farther down when Farmer, Akiyama, Blandino etc are also in the lineup.
    Not a lot of answers for the bullpen other than trying to catch lightening in a bottle with some of the minor league FA signings. Unfortunately, as I supposed a week or so ago, Barnhart and Naquin are coming back down to earth after hot starts.

    It all just appears a lot to overcome at this point. I know it’s still “early” but some of the concerns about the club are coming to fruition, and other concerns are arising. If it keeps up I hope the Reds are active sellers at the trade deadline.

    • Scott C

      I am afraid that the Reds are who they are. Not only did not everything go right, a lot of things have gone wrong (Castillo, Suarez, injuries)

  32. Steven Ross

    Larkin brought up something which crossed my mind too. You have to put someone at leadoff besides Winker. Yes, he’s raking….solo homers. Need to get runners in front of Winker and Nick. He mentioned Shogo and I agree. He was a big part of our success last season when we made a run to make the playoffs. I’m taking it easy on Bell this year but he needs to tweak the lineup to one which makes more sense.

    • Grand Salami

      This is my sentiment. The Reds haven’t had OF hit this prolifically since who? Bruce never did. Dunn and Kearns didn’t. Griffey’s first year wasn’t this torrid. Dare I say Eric Davis?

      BUT the team leader in RBI is Naquin (Nick C) may be tied.

      Winker is top 4 in MLB in dingers and is 27th in RBI. The two of them lead the league in total bases. The average RBI count for anyone else with 100 TB is about 35.5 – the the Reds have missed out on about 10 more runs scored conservatively.

      That’s perhaps two more wins?

      Shogo, Nick C, Winker, Stephenson, Nanquin is your top 5 of the order. How to make that work?!

  33. Grand Salami

    I’m not as down on this team as I was after the Giants.

    This team lost their starting 1st baseman, 2nd baseman and CF.

    Their ace has bottomed out and their only IF to play consistently has accumulated negative WAR.

    they began the season with their other ‘starting’ OF on the DL and the closer a mental team in wreck.

    Miley, Winker, Castellanos, and Naquin may be the only ‘bright spots’ for this team.

    I can’t put all that on Bell. In fact, I can put very little of it on him. My problems are primarily limited to lineup construction and his use of Antone.

    This team, if moderately healthy, should have a good 30 game run of .600 baseball in them. At this point they have to avoid falling too far in the hole.

    • Indy Red Man

      Too many holes on this team. 1-5 against a 18-30 Arizona team? Moose/Votto coming back creates more questions then they answer. Suarez forced back to SS to be a true 2-way threat? Stephenson forced back into a platoon? Suarez/Castillo could get it together, but you think Winker/Castellanos hit .350 all year? Naquin at age 30 is suddenly going to put out a 35/110 season? Idk? They DFA 3-4 scrub relievers and find 3-4 off the trash heap somewhere. Thats not winning baseball either. This season is toast. I’ll be estatic if I’m wrong, but I’m not in this case.

      They’re going to Washington, St. Louis, Chicago, Milw, and SD. They finish 4 in SD on June 20. They’re 5.5 out now and if they’re not 9-10+ games out by June 20 then I’ll be shocked!

      • Grand Salami

        Indy I think the biggest change needs to be Suarez.

        Once Senzel is healthy, he becomes the full-time IF guy. The best candidate for SS is probably India – and he can platoon there with Suarez. Moose plays whichever position he can cover better between 2/3 and Senzel takes the other.

        The OF gets slightly less crowded and give Shogo a chance to play a bit more as a lead off guy.

        Without a big turnaround by Castillo and an injection from a new starter from AAA or Antone, I don’t think returning to health will be enough.

        Crazy thought: why not make a PTBNL offer to the Orioles for Galvis? Admit defeat and get back to something serviceable.

  34. Fanman

    Does Castillo and Suarez have options left? Farmer keeps getting ran out there everyday. Nothing changes if nothing changes. Bring Garcia or Rodriguez to play SS. Winker or Castellanos play 1B until Votto returns. Get Shogo at top of lineup followed by Winker and Castellanos for more RBI opportunities. Idk. Add some speed. Strange-Gordon. Castellanos at 3B until Eugenio gets it together. Not a fan of defensive musical chairs but Farmer and Blandino in lineup everyday isn’t the answer. I do like Stephenson as spot starter at 1B. Deal surplus of outfielders for a quality bullpen arm. Drop Antone into rotation.

  35. Roger Garrett

    Reds have a bunch of outfielders that can hit and a bunch of infielders that are really third basemen that can’t or aren’t and that is the issue.We can only play 3 in the outfield and 4 infielders and a catcher.Moose, Joey and Suarez when healthy will play and only one will finish at or above league average as a hitter and none at average defensively but they will play.When all are healthy the Reds will have players watching that are better hitters and defenders with more upside and are younger. This is a big time roster issue to say the least.

  36. JB

    Everybody wants Shogo at the top of the lineup with Winker Castellanos and Naquin. That’s 4 outfielders. Winker has already taken balls at first before Blsndino and Stephenson. Obviously he wasnt good or we would have seen him there already. Castellanos isnt playing anywhere but right in my opinion. He is working on a new contract for next year and beyond. He isnt staying for 16 million. He has worked on his fielding and somebody is giving him a nice contract to play right next year. So Shogo or Naquin? So far Shogo hasnt shown much. They both are left handed. This team was not put together well. Winker and Castellanos play every day. Shogo ,Naquin and Senzel or Aquino for one spot.
    You have two quality catchers that are having good years. 1st , 2nd and 3rd can be played by 4 guys. Short is the only place where 1 guy ( Suarez) can play. Farmer and Blandino are bench pieces and nothing more. This team is a hot mess. To many players for 8 positions. Especially when Senzel,Moose and Votto get back pretty soon.

    • MBS

      It is a poorly constructed team. 21 seems to be a long shot, so it’s time to think about how to make 22 better, not a rebuild. Castellanos will leave if we don’t trade him, so we need to move him. Barnhart is not going to be resigned, so also trade him. Trade Miley, and either Castillo or Gray.

      LF Winker, CF Shogo, RF Naquin 4th Aquino
      DH Votto, 1B Moustakes, 2B Senzel, SS Garcia, 3B Suarez, U India,?
      C Stephenson, ?
      SP Gray, Mahle, Lodolo, Greene, (Santillan, Gutierrez)
      BP Garrett, Sims, (Santillan, Gutierrez) ?,?,?,?

      And to head off the criticism of India needing to play, believe me between Votto, Moustakes, and Senzel, there will be plenty of IL time, and India may start more games than any of those 3.

  37. Fanman

    I am pulling for Suarez. Like Castillo, at their best when relaxed and having fun. First few starts thought cold weather was problem for Castillo. Now?