The Cincinnati Reds and Chicago Cubs will wrap up their 3-game series at Wrigley Field this afternoon at 2:20pm ET. Cincinnati will be looking to avoid the sweep at the hand of the baby bears.

Starting Lineups

Cincinnati Reds

Chicago Cubs

Eugenio Suárez – 3B Joc Pederson – LF
Jesse Winker – LF Kris Bryant – 1B
Nick Castellanos – RF Javier Báez – SS
Tyler Stephenson – 1B Ian Happ – CF
Tyler Naquin – CF Willson Contreras – C
Kyle Farmer – SS Rafael Ortega – RF
Tucker Barnhart – C Patrick Wisdom – 3B
Jonathan India – 2B Eric Sogard – 2B
Tyler Mahle – SP Jake Arrieta – SP

Starting Pitchers

Tyler Mahle

After a hiccup on the 20th against San Francisco where he allowed seven runs in just 2.0 innings, Tyler Mahle rebounded with 5.1 innings of no-run baseball in Washington the last time out. He’ll look to be more like that version of himself today.

It’s been a running theme this year but Tyler Mahle has reverse splits this season. Right-handed hitters are hitting .287/.330/.521 against him in 102 plate appearances with five walks and 33 strikeouts. Lefties are hitting .179/.284/.274 with 13 walks and 33 strikeouts in 109 plate appearances. Left-handed hitters are striking out a lot more and hitting for a lot less power than right-handed hitters have been. Mahle also has some big home and road splits. He’s been outstanding on the road, posting a 1.71 ERA in six starts this year (7.23 on the road in four starts).

Pitch usage from 2021

4-Seam Splitter Change Up
Velo 94.3 86.4 87.3
Usage 52.3% 11.9% 35.7%

Jake Arrieta

The former Cincinnati Reds draft pick (it’s true, the Reds picked him in the 31st round out of high school but he chose to go to college) has posted a 4.37 ERA this season in 47.1 innings with 16 walks and 38 strikeouts. He had a strong start to the year – his ERA was 2.57 after five starts, but he got roughed up at the end of April by the Reds who tagged him with seven earned in 3.1 innings and hit three homers off of him.

Lefties have performed better against Arrieta this season, hitting .269/.336/.454 against him with 11 walks and 25 strikeouts in 122 plate appearances this year. Right-handed hitters have posted a .219/.278/.438 line this year with five walks and 13 strikeouts in 79 plate appearances. He’s performed much better at home – 2.86 ERA – and it’s mostly due to the fact that he’s kept the baseball in the park at home where he’s given up just two home runs in 22.0 innings.

Pitch usage from 2021

2-Seam Slider Change
Velo 90.8 87.5 85.9 79.9
Usage 56.9% 20.8% 5.9% 16.4%

When and Where

  • Game time: 2:20pm ET
  • Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago
  • Watch: Bally Sports Ohio,
  • Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
  • Forecast: ­62°, sunny, 0% chance of rain.

News and Notes

Hunter Greene keeps getting it done

Last night in Double-A we saw Hunter Greene pick up eight more strikeouts, bumping his league best total to 41 on the year in 28.2 innings while his ERA sits at 1.91 through five starts. I wrote about his start and how the team should handle his promotion and timeline a bit today at this morning if that’s the kind of thing you are interested in reading.

Jose Garcia changes his name to Jose Barrero

Reds prospect Jose Garcia is now going by Jose Barrero. The name change is to honor his mother who recently passed away, so he took her last name. After missing a few days on the temporary inactive list he returned to the lineup on Saturday for Double-A Chattanooga.

NL Central Standings

Playoff odds via Fangraphs

Team W L GB Playoff %
Cardinals 29 22 0 41.5%
Cubs 29 22 0 36.9%
Brewers 27 25 2.5 47.9%
Reds 22 28 6.5 6.4%
Pirates 20 31 9.0 0.0%

121 Responses

    • Rex

      CBS sports standings predicts a 75.5 win season 1.1% Div Champ 1.7% playoffs

      they look completely lost to me

      Joey may start a fire when he get’s back from his hitchhiking injury, it should at least get Blandino off the field

  1. Joey Oreos

    Is there a clause in someone’s contract that says Shogo Akiyama is not allowed to start? I understand when he came back from his injury that Naquin was tearing it up but that’s not the case anymore. You’d think that instead of messing around with the batting order or playing musical chairs with players in the infield that maybe Bell would try starting Shogo more than once a week.

    • RedsMonk65

      Yes, unless he’s hurt, I don’t understand that either.


        Especially if the wind is blowing in like the other day. Seems Shogo could start in that case because Naquin’s homerun threat is diminished.

  2. Mark Moore

    Nice article on our AA phenom pair of arms. I’m right with you on not rushing them forward. Give them a chance to repeat success the 2nd time against teams (or even the 3rd). Don’t squander starting talent in the MLB bullpen either.

    Hoping we take it to Arrieta and the Stupid Cubs today.

  3. Old-school

    Nice article on the other site.

    Any ideas on innings limits for both Lodolo and Greene this year?

  4. Mark Moore

    3 batters – 3 expected outcomes.

    Nice 16-game streak for Nick C.

    Time to make Jake-the-Reds-hater pay early (and often).

  5. Mark Moore

    Nice work TySteve! Run up his count.

    Now to convert …

  6. Old-school

    4 straight simple quality at bats.
    Stephenson continues to give a quality AB

  7. JB

    Joe West crew is the worst. I wonder how many calls get challenged against his crew.

  8. Mark Moore

    Winner winner chicken dinner!!!

    The one thing DB and staff seem to be able to consistently do correctly.

    Make ’em pay, Tuck!

  9. Mark Moore

    I didn’t realize it’s still HBP if it hits dirt first. Run would score anyway.

    Time for India to show up … and he does!

    • Rex Aultman

      I had not seen that either, Tucker by instinct blocked that pitch in the dirt

  10. Old-school

    India showing some speed on the infield single

  11. Mark Moore

    Batted around in the 1st. Got to love that.

    Time for Mahle to show his stuff.

  12. RedsMonk65

    We scored three runs. In the first inning. With no HRs. Baby steps.

    Now, hold them and score some more!

  13. Old-school

    3 singles 1BB 1HBP 1 fielders choice 1 sac fly and no strike outs by any position players produces 3 runs.

    Terrible launch angles though.

    • Old Big Ed

      In theory, the Reds didn’t score.

  14. Old Big Ed

    Joe West is yet another umpire who can’t call balls and strikes.

    • Mark Moore

      He’s well beyond his prime and too arrogant to learn or be corrected. Time for him to move along.

    • RojoB

      Joe West loves him some Joe West. The fact we all know his name tells all


  15. Mark Moore

    My Internet went out briefly. Bryant was at bat when it did. came back to the inning being over. That’s another baby step.

    Now to see if Geno had a good view from the bench while the other players did something productive.

    • Mark Moore

      I was about to comment on what I saw as wicked fast bat speed by Bryant. Wonder what uniform he wears next year.

      • RojoB

        Well, although he loves hitting in GABP, if he joins the Reds he won’t get to face Reds’ pitchers there anymore.

  16. Mark Moore

    So Suarez makes an out, Winker and Castellanos get on. Isn’t this how it started an inning ago?

    Crooked number(s) please!!

      • Mark Moore

        Right. And he got to lead off 2x already. Plus he did put the bat on the ball both times.

      • RojoB

        There may be something to the idea that lead off forces a change in his plate approach to hitting not slugging.

      • TR

        The result of many years of holding down third base and the offseason prediction of at least 50 homeruns.

  17. Mark Moore

    Productive out by TySteve (again). Gives us a chance and runs Jake-not-from-State-Farm to 50+ pitches.

    • RojoB

      The good- running Jake early is always fun

      The bad- Cubs bullpen is better than he is

      • Mark Moore

        If we stay ahead, we won’t have to see Chicken Arms today. Did I mention how much I don’t like the Stupid Cubs’ closer?

      • Mark Moore

        I love me some wings, Rojo. I just don’t like them on a certain Cubbie’s Closer.

  18. Sliotar

    Arrieta already at 51 pitches after 2 innings. Doesn’t have his stuff today, apparently.

    A hit there would have allowed Mahle to cruise … picking and choosing which hitters he wants to challenge.

  19. Mark Moore

    3rd inning – continue with “Everybody hits. Everybody scores.”

    Let’s chase Jake-who-hasn’t-got-it this inning.

  20. Mark Moore

    60 pitches and climbing. Probably feels more like 100 given how he’s laboring.

  21. Sliotar

    Great job by Barnhart.

    When a dude doesn’t have it … run up that pitch count.

    Also, maybe it brings Mahle up this inning, not leading off the 4th.

  22. Mark Moore

    Still a lot to learn, Mr. India. You gave away that AB to Jake.

  23. Mark Moore

    Mahle not even taking a hack at it?

    At least we roll over the line-up again.

    • DeadRed

      Pitchers are so useless in the batting order. Hasn’t swung the bat in two at bats now.

      • Mark Moore

        It’s time. We’ll see it in the CBA.

  24. Old Big Ed

    Another homer today for Billy Hamilton, who now has an OPS that is .064 higher than That of Eugenio Suarez.

  25. Mark Moore

    TySteve apparently took all his 1B coaching well based on that stretch-and-catch.

  26. Mark Moore

    Sorry, Cowboy. Even Barney having to reach back doesn’t make up for West blowing that call.

    Of course, then apparently Old-Joe-I-Can’t-See-Anymore gives us one back.

    • Rex

      it seems like we have gotten a ton of Joe West this year…is he traveling with the REDS?

  27. Sliotar

    Third time through the lineup … the Reds may put Arrieta and the Cubs out of business … right here.

    Clearing Mahle last inning set this up.

  28. Mark Moore

    Well, it appears Geno heard what Billy just did and had to answer.

    I’ll take this as the 1-for-3 lead-off so far. Plus Jake at 70 and fading helps.

  29. RojoB

    It’s Jesse Winker’s world. He just lets Arrieta live in it

    • Mark Moore

      And he’s living in his head rent free today. The thought to bunt down 3rd was genius.

  30. Mark Moore

    Law of averages says that will happen.

    • Mark Moore

      Didn’t realize that was only his 4th GIDP this year. Line drive machine indeed.

  31. RojoB

    85 pitches and the error keeps him throwing

  32. Mark Moore

    I kind of figured we’d see a muffed throw from 3B today. TySteve had just enough speed to make it work for us.

  33. Mark Moore

    Will Jake make it through the 4th? I’m thinking David Ross has seen enough by now.

    • Mark Moore

      Asked and answered.

      Nice to have a 5-0 lead and less innings of their BP to face.

    • RojoB

      Hey, lucky for Arrieta, it’s a home game. So he’ll be able to find something to do that he finds interesting after his Turkey of a game

      • Mark Moore

        Chicago is our favorite city. Haven’t been since Thanksgiving 2019. So many fun things to do and great places to eat there. Can’t wait until we can go back again.

      • RojoB

        Ever eat burgers at Au Cheval or pizza at The Peqod?

      • Mark Moore

        Our pizza joint is the Exchequer on Wabash under the el. Thanksgiving dinner at the Weber Grill.

      • TR

        Chicago is the capital of the American Midwest.

  34. RedsMonk65

    Such a much different feeling being up 5-0 instead of down 5-0 nearly halfway through the game. Let’s make it a habit.

    • Mark Moore

      That would be nice, wouldn’t it?

  35. Mark Moore

    OK, perfect game and no-no off the table.

    Now focus on “just pitching” and get through the inning. Fail that task and you don’t get the W in any case.

  36. Mark Moore

    Big K there for Mahle. Now to wrap up the 5th and hit the showers.

  37. Mark Moore

    And another Joe West gift after blown calls.

  38. Mark Moore

    Did y’all catch that wave, wave back between Wink and Joc? Smiles all around.

  39. Mark Moore

    OK, Amir. Block out the noise and just pitch – like that AB.

  40. Sliotar

    Garrett may not be able to go 2 innings today … but this is a great spot to go as long as he can … and hopefully refine his stuff.

    Sims might need work and could close things out, if AG stumbles.

    • Mark Moore

      I was thinking 1+ would be the target just to get some confidence back.

  41. Mark Moore

    Joe-can’t-see-the-zone not helping.

  42. Mark Moore

    That works. Avoid Joe-blows-calls and get the DP.

  43. Mark Moore

    The oven mitt discussion is more than a little silly.

    • Mark Moore

      But they are definitely New School.

      Froze him. 9 outs left.

  44. Old-school

    Brandon Phillips is the best Reds seccond baseman defensively by a long shot since 1980. Pokey Reese was outstanding but didnt play long.

    Jon India is very good. For a team that has struggled defensively the last 5 years or so- India @ 2b is part of that solution. That 5-4-3 double play turn was major league

    • Mark Moore

      I personally like him settling in there. Somebody posted that he didn’t play above AA yet? And I keep having to remind myself that nothing really counted last year for the minor leagues.

  45. RojoB

    Báez with the hat trick

    It’s a beautiful day

    • Mark Moore


      Did I mention I find him to be the same kind of punk as the Neck Tattoo? 🙂

  46. Mark Moore

    Love the “Oh Joe!” from Cowboy.

  47. Dennis Westrick

    Perez? Seriously? Bell simply can’t help himself!

      • Roger Garrett

        Relievers one inning at a time until we find the one that can’t is just classic.Surely and I mean surely he has no feel at all for the game or his players.Perez hasn’t had it at all that I can remember.Just cluless but great job by Tyler Mahle who twice now on this trip came up big time.Kid is getting better.

  48. Mark Moore

    Why can’t we do more of that oppo-shift stuff?

  49. JB

    Well it’s hard to believe but the guy that walk…….scored.

  50. LDS

    Have we reached the point where everyone realizes that Bell has to go? Unlikely, but we all have dreams.

    • Dennis Westrick

      Obvious to everyone but the people who need to fire him! As a Notre Dame grad I liken Bell’s hiring to ND’s hiring of Jerry Faust back in the day!

      • LDS

        I was living in South Bend at the time. At least Faust had a terrific record at Moeller. Bell had no such minor league record.

      • Mark Moore

        One of the local jokes back in the Faust(ian) years was …

        “Good news! Faust sold his Knollwood house. Bad news – he bought another one.”

    • Mark Moore

      Past that point. And it is just a dream for us.

  51. Old-school

    This bullpen is awful

    Garrett and perez both had zero command and their walks and failures were erased with lucky hard hit double plays.

    Sims and Antone are the only legitimate pitchers in the bullpen.

    The Reds didnt address SS in the off-season and also weakened the bullpen.
    Add to that injuries and the failures of Suarez Castillo and Garrett and it adds up to 5 under .500 @ Memorial Day

    • Mark Moore

      So do you try and sell off the few working parts that won’t cripple you for good? Castellanos, Barnhart, Geno, Shogo?

      • Rex

        I think so but, I do agree with Sliotar who I think said recently to resign Tucker to 2 years for less money, I get the feeling he would do it to stay with the team and he surly knows his current deal will be an team opt-out

      • Old-school

        I think that was me- but if Sliotar said it too…i agree

        Reds catching core is solid and if you can have A 2 time GG lefty catcher paired wuth a young RH hitting top 15 pick for under $8 million per year for both???


  52. Old-school

    Story of this game and frankly the season is the growth of Tyler Mahle as the Ace of the staff. Beat Scherzer after a 1-6 home stand and beat Cubs to salvage the series.

    First home grown Ace since Cueto

    • Mark Moore

      Very well could be. Imagine him, Lodolo, and Greene in the same rotation for a couple of years.

    • TR

      It’s taken awhile, but Tyler Mahle is getting there.

  53. Mark Moore

    Much better afternoon. Time to go help cook a little dinner.

    Catch y’all tomorrow.

  54. Dennis Westrick

    3 and 3 road trip! Could have been worse! Beat two (2) former Cy Young winners as well. Still in this thing if we can just string some wins together! Let’s start against the Phillies!