Jesse Winker’s third home run of the game in the top of the ninth inning against Cardinals relief ace Alex Reyes propelled the Cincinnati Reds to a stirring 8-7 victory and a four-game series sweep against St. Louis.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (28-29) 8 10 1
St. Louis Cardinals (31-29)
7 14 0
W: Hembree (1-1) L: Reyes (3-2) SV: Sims (6)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After the third Winker homer, Lucas Sims allowed the first two St. Louis hitters in the bottom of the ninth to reach. But he then retired the side without any runs scoring.

After the Reds took a 7-0 lead after three innings, a funny thing happened on the way to the rout. The Reds bullpen coughed up seven runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to wipe out a 7-0 Cincinnati lead, shining a very bright spotlight on the biggest deficiency on this team. It was the third time since 1966 the Reds have blown a seven-run lead in one inning — all three times to St. Louis.

The bullpen will likely continue to churn as the front office continues to scour the waiver wire for pitchers who they hope might have something to offer.

While the sixth inning was wildly disappointing, the fact that the Reds were able to overcome that disaster and score a victory is potentially a huge turning point. The four-game winning streak against rival St. Louis on the road is stirring, and pulled the Reds within a game and a half of third-place St. Louis. Milwaukee defeated Arizona today to improve to 33-26 and stay in first place. The Cubs-Giants game was still in progress as this article was posted, with the Giants looking to sweep four from Chicago.

The Offense

Before Wade Miley took the mound, he had a 2-0 lead:

It could have been more, but with runners on second and third and one out, Eugenio Suarez hit a grounder to third baseman Nolan Arenado. Tyler Stephenson, the runner at third, broke toward the plate. Arenado threw home, and catcher Andrew Knizner tagged out Stephenson. The catcher then threw quickly to second, where Tyler Naquin had strayed off base and was tagged out for a very inopportune and unusual double play. TV analyst Chris Welch described it as TOOTBLAN … TOOTBLAN, which means Thrown Out on the Bases Like a Nincompoop (times two). Little did we know at the time that at least one or two of those runs scoring could have been very important.

Then in the top of the second, with two on and two out:

In the top of the third, Suarez shot a double into the left-field corner, scoring two to give the Reds a 7-0 lead and start the brooms in Reds Country twitching. But the Cardinals’ seven-run rally stopped the twitching and put those brooms on the respirator.

Until …

Winker blasted his third of the game with one out in the top of the ninth. It was the first home run Reyes has ever surrendered to a lefthanded batter in the major leagues.

So, all of these points came to fruition:

Shogo Akiyama went two-for-four as the only Red other than Winker with more than one hit. Nick Castellanos’ 21-game hitting streak came to an end.

The Pitching

It’s not exactly a news flash, but the starting pitching has been very good during this hot streak. Consistently good starting pitching is the only chance this team has a chance to win the NL Central Division, because there is not enough quality depth in the bullpen to cover more than a couple of innings per game reliably.

Miley worked around four hits and two walks in his five innings while tying his season high of strikeouts with eight. He dropped his ERA to a very tidy 2.96.

The combined line of Michael Feliz and Brad Brach in the pivotal sixth inning: no batters retired, six hits, two walks, seven runs, all earned. Ryan Hendrix pitched a scoreless seventh inning in what seemed like Bell’s way of saying to Hendrix, “I need someone I can count on in close games. Are you it?”

Heath Hembree pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, and Lucas Sims — after allowing a single and double to start the St. Louis ninth — retired the side without any runs crossing to complete a stirring victory.

Notes Worth Noting

Today is the anniversary of perhaps my favorite moment of the entire “rebuild” era …

Ironically, the last time prior to today Cardinals pitcher John Gant gave up two home runs to the same hitter in the same game was two of the four for Scooter.

Redleg Nation inhabitants who watched the Big Red Machine will remember this name:

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Milwaukee Brewers at Cincinnati Reds

Tuesday, June 8, 7:10 p.m. ET

Adrian Houser (3-5, 3.86 ERA) vs Sonny Gray (1-4, 3.64 ERA)

155 Responses

  1. Tim

    Isn’t that how you draw up a win? Take a 7-0 lead into the 6th. Give up 7 in the 6th inning to tie, and need Winker to hit a third HR to take the lead and then…hold on in the 9th with runners on 2 and 3. Dear owners, get three solid relievers for us fans as an early Christmas present, please!

    • jon vera

      NO ONE is trading away good BP help……..except the Reds.

      • MK

        Have you seen the numbers of the guys traded away? Don’t be too nostalgic about those two.

      • 2020ball

        I’m not looking to be nostalgic or anything, but I dont think those numbers are as bad as you’d like to think, particularly in the last month for the main guy they let go of. Feel free to google the numbers youre so sure prove your argument and get back to me.

      • 2020ball

        Blows my mind people are still hanging onto this argument without actually looking at the numbers.

  2. Sliotar

    4 dudes are carrying the Cincinnati Reds … keeping their playoff hopes alive:

    Winker
    Castellanos
    Antone
    Sims

    Sims today … 3rd appearance in 4 days … what a Houdini escape act.

    Everyone else is within a standard deviation of their mean … for those Six Sigma Black Belts in the RLN.

    Any of the Big 4 mentioned above could slack off in the second half … and it would be completely understandable.

    But, if all of them somehow keep this up all season … and some other folks raise their efforts … Game On.

    • David

      I think India is back in a good hitting groove. Tyler Stephenson shows some promise.
      Tyler Naquin (this year’s Scooter Gennett diamond in the rough winner) has had some big games.
      Joey Votto could be back soon. Time will tell what he can do, but maybe more than the rest of the subs for him at first base.

      And Mahle has really been the most consistent starter of the year. Gray and Miley have had good stretches, but not as consistent.
      If the Reds had 5 (FIVE!!) consistently good starters, they could be a contending team.

      • steven shanken

        Can india play short? That would allow Senzel to play 2nd when he comes off the DL . When MM comes back he can take over 3rd. Suarez can swing between 1st and 3rd if they still value his 164 batting average. Bring up the the young arms from the minors that can are developing as starters. They can give you 3 to 4 innings once our starters get gassed after 5 or 6 innings.

    • GreatRedLegsArms

      Hembree and Hendrix can be added to the shorthanded bullpen. Bell could definitely use some help and get a couple of reliable arms. Winker was amazing and Sims was outstanding, Go Reds!

    • MBS

      Sims 2020 was a stud, Sims 2021 is not. If you’re wanting the big 4, Mahle would be in over Sims, hands down, 7 days a week.

      • Sliotar

        The Tyler Mahle who … in 12 starts … has only gone past 5.1 innings pitched … 3 times.

        The Mahle who pitches once every 5 days.

        No one … other than Antone … can replace what Sims does in the 2021 Reds bullpen.

      • MBS

        You’re judging Sims relative to his team mates, he is not having a good year. He isn’t a complete disaster like most of the pen, but he’s not been good this year. Yes, Mahle has been more valuable than Sims by any measure, and who said anything about the pen, he only mentioned them as the big 4. He is on a 6 game good streak now, but you see how close the wheel were to falling off today.

      • Sliotar

        Good grief, friend.

        The Mahle bias is strong with you. Facts don’t seem to matter.

        If you removed Mahle from the rotation and Sims from the bullpen … whose innings contributions are harder to replace?

        In 2021, knowing this team isn’t adding pieces … so you have to compare their performances to the rest of the roster.

        Antone and Sims have to cover 4 innings some nights … especially because guys like Mahle can’t get into through 6 IP most times.

      • MBS

        Geez, I’m not even a Mahle guy, but I’m looking at who’s done what this year, and Mahle has done more to help the club win. Mahle is a middle of the rotation type pitcher. I’d also add Miley, Naquin over Sims, and India is climbing that ladder to. We currently have 1 reliable arm in the pen. Again I like Sims, I just don’t value his contributions as much as you.

      • Sliotar

        Has anyone said … at any point … “India is carrying the Reds right now?”

        Sims just recorded 3 saves in 4 days vs. the Cardinals … in Saint Louis.

        Would be interesting to know if a Reds reliever had ever done that before (feels doubtful).

        Maybe there is a Big 5 at season’s end … and India’s in that group. Not yet.

      • JayTheRed

        I would say Stephanson and India have done a nice job so far. They do get some credit for helping the team win.

        Naquin sure has been helpful too. Heck even Barnhardt has done a pretty good job at the plate this year overall. Hitting is not the issue, They need to find some relievers to get from teams that are willing to trade them.

      • Melvin

        India is really doing well and I’m glad. I’m curious as to what others think should happen or will happen when everyone is back. I don’t think ANYONE thinks Suarez should play SS virtually ever again except maybe David Bell. Where should India play realistically knowing who is likely to be in the lineup no matter what? Pretty much everyone knows my take on it by now and that is to try him at SS.

      • Tom Reeves

        No, Suarez shouldn’t play SS. For me, Farmer is the everyday shortstop until a better option comes along. Suarez simply can’t handle the position defensively. Farmer is basically a league average bat at a defensively critical position – that’ll do with this offense.

        Watching India play 2B, it’s hard for me to understand how he can’t play SS but it doesn’t look like the Reds think he can. I’m glad, offensively, he seems to be adjusting to the adjustments the league made against him. If he’s able to continually adjust like he’s showing right now, watch out.

        Love what the catcher position is doing. Barnhart and Stephenson are getting it done at the plate and behind the dish.

        Naquin was a huge find. A 1st round draft choice and top prospect who got hurt and who’s getting his second chance. Franky, he could be what we wanted Senzel to be.

        Speaking of Senzel, the guy simply isn’t healthy enough to get into any kind of rhythm. The contrast with India is stunning. It might be a mistake but when Senzel gets healthy, I think I trade him to try and fill some of this team’s holes.

        Finally, I love the top of this line up – India, Winker, Castellanos. I’m also thinking that when Votto returns, he might need to emphasize his get on base potential. If Votto can boost his OBP, India, Votto, Winker, Castellanos is stout.

        Derek Johnson seems to be getting the starting pitching sorted out. I hope he can do the same with Garrett and Doolittle. I don’t think Antone and Sims will be enough to hold this thing together.

        All n all, this is turning into a fun season. We’ve seen a 7 game win streak at the beginning, lots of offense, a triple play, Votto’s HR #300, Miley’s No Hitter, a 4 game sweep of the Cardinals, two well developed rookies with India and Stephenson, and Castellanos and Winker off to MVP starts to the season. That’s a lot for which to be grateful.

      • Melvin

        Yes Tom R. There is a lot to be thankful for and it could be a whole lot worse. It’s just everyone, including you I’m sure, is VERY tired of losing. So if you don’t think the Reds will try India at SS what will happen to him?

      • 2020ball

        “All n all, this is turning into a fun season. We’ve seen a 7 game win streak at the beginning, lots of offense, a triple play, Votto’s HR #300, Miley’s No Hitter, a 4 game sweep of the Cardinals, two well developed rookies with India and Stephenson, and Castellanos and Winker off to MVP starts to the season. That’s a lot for which to be grateful.”

        +1,000

        People are frustrated, I get it, but its been a cool year to watch

      • MBS

        I agree that India is the best overall choice for SS with the current roster. Barrero will probably be up in a couple of months, and then you may need to move India again. I’d rather bring up Rodriguez, and let him fill the role until Barrero is ready. Keep India at 2B, Suarez at 3B, Votto 1B, and Moustakes to cover 1B, 2B, 3B.

  3. MBS

    Crazy game, I didn’t get to watch until it was 7 – 7, that Winker is a monster. The Reds need that extra arm for the pen, and soon. Obviously I hope Naquin is back on the field ASAP, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t eager to see Shogo as an everyday player. He is a real leadoff hitter, but he’s been buried behind injuries and 3 Big bats in the OF.

  4. GreatRedLegsFan

    Hembree and Hendrix can be added to the shorthanded bullpen. Bell could definitely use some help and get a couple of reliable arms. Winker was amazing and Sims was outstanding, Go Reds!

    • Doc

      Sims got the job done, but putting runners on 2nd and 3rd with nobody out is not what I would call outstanding. I believe he did essentially the same thing last time out. Play with fire often enough and you will get burned, which also describes what is happening when Reds pitches walk a half dozen guys in a game.

  5. Magnum 44

    I think this team has enough talent to make the playoffs, but the front office needs to decide how they are going to address the elephant in the room (bullpen). Do they go out and trade for arms or do they bring up their young starters on the farm and let them get their feet wet in the bullpen. I hope they go for the latter if Santillian, Greene and Lodolo have 2 pitches they can throw for strikes bring them up and let them learn trial by fire.. What they are doing now is not working.

    • Dewey Roberts

      I agree. The relievers we have jeopardize the largest of leads—- like today.

  6. J

    Barnhart should be getting more praise for this win. In the 9th he blocked at least two balls in the dirt with the tying run on third. Sims struck the last guy out on a bad pitch in the dirt; Barnhart made a really great play to block it, then pounced on the loose ball with plenty of time to complete the play. Sims gets credit for the save, but Barnhart actually saved it. A lot of catchers would have allowed the tying run to score there.

    • Old Big Ed

      This is a correct opinion. Barnhart is severely under-appreciated by a large segment of the Reds fan base. He is an excellent catcher in all aspects of the position.

    • TR

      Barnhart did save the win. Good catchers often do not get enough credit and Barnhart is one of them.

  7. Dennis Westrick

    This is a REPOST from the game thread! Thrilled with the 4 game sweep of the Dirty Birds! NOT HAPPY with the lack of retaliation for the 8 Reds batters who were HBP! Who’s managing the Cards? Clint Hurdle?

    • BatsLeftThrowsRight

      Almost all those HBP were on breaking balls, I believe three just skimmed uniforms. I was hoping the Reds would not retaliate and wake up a lifeless club. The bull-pen took care of that.

      To sweep the Cards four straight after blowing a 7-0 lead and getting out of the bottom of the ninth inning with second and third and zero outs was phenomenal.

    • Votto4life

      The Reds retaliated by sweeping the Cardinals at home.

      Do you really think the Reds can afford more suspensions at the moment?

      • RojoB

        I think, as was raised by someone else, that the MLB crackdown on foreign substances for pitchers has really been affecting the St. Yadier Cardinals.

        Could not have come at a more welcome time!

    • ClevelandRedsFan

      Reds couldn’t afford another base runner in this game. One more cardinal to reach by HBP could have easily led to a run with this pen.

      I’ll take a win over vengeance any day.

  8. BatsLeftThrowsRight

    Probably would have went down as one of the worst losses in regular franchise season history. It was kind of a miracle to get the win. The bullpen can not continue to tank like this. They need a minimum of two more reliable arms out there.

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Lodolo and Greene pitching out of the pen for the big club for the remainder of this year. The team is crying out for viable options out of the pen.

    • JayTheRed

      Wondering what Lorenzen is going to bring when he comes back.. He has been pretty good in the bullpen in the past.

      • Doc

        He could be the critical piece down the stretch. If he is his old self, then 2 of Sims, Antone and Lorenzen used in a game still leaves the other for the next game. Assumes, of course, that one of them is not wasted by using him for a 6-10 pitch appearance in the middle of a game. Lorenzen could be the missing piece.

  9. Melvin

    I have to think that Krall would do something if he could about the mess we have called the bullpen. His hands must be tied. If that’s the case do what it takes to bring up our two young super pitchers. Let them pitch a half game or so twice a week after the starter. A message to Big Bob: At least pretend like you care and want to win.

    • Mark Moore

      In the game thread, somebody explained even getting those players in AA to AAA is a process and takes time. I think Lodolo could make an impact. I’d prefer to see Greene season where he is for a while.

      • Melvin

        That’s why I said, “do what it takes to bring up our two young super pitchers”. 🙂

    • TR

      It’s not a surprise to me the bullpen has turned out, with a couple exceptions, as it has. Krall spent the offseason, probably at the order of the FO, scouring the dustbin of available pitchers to fill the relief staff. I was in favor of getting rid of R. Iglesias and that was probably a mistake, but I did not favor trading Bradley. We could use both of them now.

  10. Mark Moore

    The biggest relief I personally felt was my own ability to breathe again once we finished off the WLB Dirty Birds. Both my wife and I were yelling at the screen.

    I was ready either way – t-bone steaks to either celebrate or drown my sorrows. Reminds me I still have some of that good Port chilling.

    • David Fickess

      You chill your port?

      I’ve only ever served mine at room temperature.

      I find it pairs well with a fine cigar this way.

  11. LDS

    Sorry folks, is the bullpen less than desired? Absolutely. But today’s game falls on Bell’s shoulders. We can debate whether he should have pulled Miley. I don’t think he should have. On the other hand, it’s extremely difficult to justify leaving Feliz in after the first three runners score or reach base. It’s like Bell was thinking Feliz couldn’t possibly give up another hit. It’s also worth noting that Schildt didn’t throw in the towel and pull the starters as Bell tends to when down 4-5 runs. That’s the difference between the Reds’ manager and a real MLB manager.

    • BatsLeftThrowsRight

      The switch in umpires was a big reason Miley got pulled. He went from getting both corners to no corners. They really need to go to a computer soon on balls and strikes.

      The home plate umpiring calling balls and strikes varies too much. Each year it gets worse. I hear the computer generated strike zone is being tested in A ball. Maybe two years away from being implemented?

      • Jim t

        While the switch in umpires changed the strike zone Miley was pulled because he was at a 92 pitches. It appears most if not all teams use the 100 pitch limit to gauge how far a starter should go. It’s been reported in a number of publications that the 100 pitch limit is a guideline in preventing arm injuries. Also if your carrying guys on your team that can’t be used in a game you have a 7 run lead in its time to look at your personnel.

      • Klugo

        Carpenter shoulda been struck out before his double. SMH.

      • Dennis Westrick

        Can’t come to the majors soon enough!

    • oklared

      The big difference is the “real MLB manager” lost 4 games with what everyone has been saying is a better run organization and team line up from the front office.

      • 2020ball

        lol yup. guys will grasp for any straws they can to be negative about this team

    • greenmtred

      I was waiting for somebody to blame Bell for the…win? He has who he has in the bullpen, and he can’t pitch Antone and Sims for four innings every game. Blame skinflint ownership. Blame the GM. If Bell had a sound roster and the Reds still lost as many as the won, blame him, if you must. They just swept the Cards in St. Louis with 3 starters injured and a mostly dysfunctional bullpen.

    • Scott C

      The blame is not on Bell for the meltdown. The blame is on ownership for not giving Krall and thus Bell the resources to sign at least a couple of dependable relief arms. Hendrix has potential but Feliz, despite the one out save the other night is not an MLB pitcher. Brach got robbed of a strike out by the ump and then Shogo just missed catching Carpenters hit and if he gets the prior K he might have been able to pitch Carpenter differently.

  12. Jim t

    Great series by the reds. Hope to play well against the Brew crew. Really like how Sims came back after the first 2 reached in the ninth. As Brantley mentioned on the radio those kind of outings develope a mental toughness that can go a long way in creating a closer.

  13. Klugo

    Tinker Bell strikes again! But hey , a win is a win and I’ll take it!

    Isn’t it amazing that we are getting hot at EXACTLY the same time as last season. If I remember correctly, last season we won like 10 in a row to get to 30-30 and get in the playoffs. Now 28-29 with three vs Milwaukee.

  14. DHud

    Almost threw my remote through my TV when it was Hendrix and not Antone in the seventh

    Game like that and your best BP arm throws 6 pitches? Bell has no clue how to manage a BP

    Also, Winker is the best 4th/PLT outfielder I’ve ever seen

    • RojoB

      “Winker is the best 4th/PLT outfielder I’ve ever seen”

      That’s why Williams signed Shogo LOL

  15. DougBall

    Not to take away anything from what Jesse Winker, Wade Miley, India, Barnhart, and Antone / Sims are doing- but base running. Tyler Stephenson what are you doing? We should have had this game in the bag. And Wade Miley can’t pitch 7 innings? Dave has got to realize you can’t keep going to the bullpen like this so early: we don’t have a great bullpen. Onwards and upwards, but the management has to up their decision-making. We can’t save pitchers for the second half of the season if we are out of the playoffs in July. Time to put the pedal to the metal. When in doubt throttle out.

    • Melvin

      “We can’t save pitchers for the second half of the season if we are out of the playoffs in July. Time to put the pedal to the metal. When in doubt throttle out”.

      There’s a lot of truth to that. That goes for hot hitting players too.

  16. TR

    A great win for the Reds on this 77th. anniversary of the D-Day Invasion of Normandy, June 6, 1944.

    • Dennis Westrick

      Thanks for the reminder! My dad proudly served as a Marine in WW II. Miss him every day! He and his dad, my grandfather, got me hooked on the Reds in 1961.

  17. Old Big Ed

    Not to sound like Baghdad Bob, but the Reds got 5 scoreless innings from their starter, and then closed the game with 4 scoreless and walkless IP from 4 bullpen guys.

    What more can you ask?

    • Doc

      That adds up to nine scoreless innings so how did the Cardinals put 7 on the board?

    • Ohiojimw

      That the manager not wait till the situation was already critical before getting the shutdown reliever in to restore order.

      • RojoB

        It’s a reasonable request, Jim. Wonder if he was thinking 8 batters ahead. The media (even Cowboy) bought that reason once already (for why he brought in Doolittle to face a lefty because Goldy was due up in 4 batters–never mind that there were already 2 outs).

      • Scott C

        Yet Antone was clearly gassed and Sims had been used in 2 of the previously three games. Can not blame manager for not wanting to use them. Agree that Feliz should have been pulled earlier.

  18. RedsMonk65

    THRILLED with the series sweep, of the Cardinals in St. Louis, to boot.
    THRILLED with the hitting by Winker, Castellanos, India, and others giving good at bats.
    THRILLED with the starting pitching this series.

    BUT FOR THE LOVE PETE (Front Office, this is for you): GET SOME RELIABLE RELIEF PITCHERS ASAP!!! The absence of them is the only thing hindering this team on a day-in, day-out basis. FIX IT.

    (sorry about the caps — but that is how I feel)

  19. Hanawi

    I don’t want to see Greene or Lodolo in the Reds’ pen until they have a bunch of time in as starters at AA/AAA. They lost most of last year (though they were at the alternate site I believe), so it’s important for their development. I could go either way on Santillan, but lean toward keeping him in the rotation. One guy that could be a solid option is Reiver Sanmartin. He’s mostly started this year and was lights out at AA before being promoted. Telling that their “big” offseason bullpen addition (Doolittle) never even got in the game today.

    • AllTheHype

      Good post and agree on Sanmartin.

    • Doc

      Nor did the self-annointed ‘closers job is mine to lose’ Garrett. Humpty Dumpty didn’t as big a fall as AG.

    • MBS

      I’m 100% in agreement, San and San should be added to the pen, and Lodolo and Greene should be getting ready if a rotation spot opens up.

  20. Magnum 44

    I have been completely in the let them stay at double A get their feet wet in Triple A but if there scout’s say they have plus pitches which both do and they can throw them for strikes you roll them out bullpen right now because this division is ripe for the taking. Or Bobby gets his wallet out and we trade future assets which in the position this ballclub is in they need to be aggressive with their callups.

    • RojoB

      I don’t trust David Bell to know how to use these pitchers (Lodolo and Greene) wisely, should they be called up “early”

  21. Tampa Red

    Given the general mood of RLN, this is probably gonna be an unpopular take, but ya know one of the many great things about this country is that I’m allowed to have and express my own opinion.

    Given that Votto, Moose, Senzel and Lorenzen have missed all or substantial parts of the season, Gray and Castillo, who were expected to lead the rotation, have combined for I think 3 wins, that Garrett, who was presumed by most to be the closer, has been brutally bad all year, and that there was no effort whatsoever to give him a legit MLB bullpen, the fact that Bell has led the Reds to basically a .500 record and 4 games out after the first 60 games has been nothing short of a commendable effort on his part.

    Sure you can nitpick some individual one-off decisions, and I often do that too because hey, it’s what us fans do. But I don’t think Bell has gotten nearly enough credit for essentially making chicken salad out of you know what. So here’s to you David Bell. May the front office give you a better hand to play for the final 100 games!

    • D-Ball

      I’m not giving David Bell credit for a 3-run homer night from Winker and crappy base running from Stephenson with 1 out. If you want to be the manager you have to own the base running going on out there.

    • RojoB

      I respect your opinion, and other folks opine that it isn’t the manager but the players that win the games (or lose the games). By that logic, Bell still gets no credit for the Reds modicum of “success.”

      Isn’t it a catch-22 of sorts?

      • Tampa Red

        I mean, that’s kinda how it goes. When the Reds win, it was the players. When they lose, it was the manager.

        I’m of the opinion that this has been Bell’s best job to date. The roster was shaky from the very beginning, and if you had told me that Lorenzen, Votto, Moose and Senzel were going to miss as much time as they have, and that Castillo and Suarez were going to be as bad as they’ve been, I would have guessed they’d be out of the pennant race already. Yet here they are, right at .500 and only 4 games back.

        Mr. Castellini, get them some help, and GO REDS!!!

    • RojoB

      Thankfully nowhere to be seen in this 4 game sweep.

      Coincidence?

    • JayTheRed

      Don’t remember which announcer it was but one of them mentioned the other day that Garrett’s got basically no movement on his fastball and his slider is predictable now. Maybe Garret needs to spend a week or two working with the Driveline people. His fastball and slider seem really straight and flat.

      Hoping Garrett can turn it around soon.

      • Scott C

        Also St. Louis has a lack of left handed hitters.

  22. Old-school

    Reds 6-1 since including last sunday. Good SP, improving offense and outstanding performance under pressure by Antone and Sims.

    Season is reset. Castellini and Krall need to step up and address the bullpen- probably a combination of internal and external solutions- but at the minimum… ownership needs to commit to a 26 man major league roster. There’s several holes.

    • RojoB

      “Castellini and Krall need to step up and address the bullpen”

      I agree, be can they or will they?

  23. Indy Red Man

    I’ve been saying it for 4-5 years on here, but when in doubt do what Tampa does. They already had a handful of good relievers, but they traded their young SS Adames to Milwaukee for more relievers. They’re always deep 1 thru 13 on their pitching staff. If they’re up 1-2 runs in the 5th then you’re in trouble!

    The Reds lineup is heating up and the rotation is pretty good, but they need help in the pen. Go out and get 1-2 guys. Lorenzen is close and maybe Hoffman? Lodolo is also 23 and pitching great. Other teams call up youngsters when they can contribute! They gave Jose Garcia-Barrero a good run last year at 22 so whats the difference? I give it about a 97% chance that he’s better then AG/doo very little

  24. Indy Red Man

    I hope Bell and the coaches get on them for their baserunning today. How does Naquin get doubled up there in the 1st inning? If Stephenson is running on contact then get into 3rd base. Its not complicated? Then what was Stephenson doing in the 3rd inning? Shogo dumps one into LF that was a hit all the way and the LF had to run a mile to get there…on top of that the LF overran the ball. Stephenson should’ve coasted into 3rd and Shogo into 2nd with a double. They both scored anyway on Suarez’s double, but thats not the point. Winker did tag up from 1st again! I love that aggressiveness! The key is thinking about those situations before they happen and being mentally prepared!

    • Dennis Westrick

      This 2021 version of the Reds is definitely one of the worst baserunning teams in all of MLB. That combined with their poor BA with RISP it’s a miracle they are only 1 game under 500.

  25. MK

    Miley should have been left in the game a little longer. Not like he is throwing 96 mph.

    • JayTheRed

      Agree I felt like Miley should have been given an opportunity to pitch the 6th inning. Especially with the lead we had at the time. I understand they are being cautious with starters but I’m pretty sure Miley could have been fine with one more inning.

      • greenmtred

        Didn’t Miley throw more than 30 pitches the previous inning? He had a number of 3-2 counts and didn’t look as sharp as he had, and the Reds were ahead 7-0. In hindsight, it might have worked better had he pitched another inning. But that’s hindsight, and the decision to take him out was perfectly reasonable.

      • Old-school

        Miley is quoted as saying he lobbied for another inning but Bell told him he didn’t want push him and Miley said he respected that decision and at the end of the day, we won a baseball game.

  26. MK

    If they Reds believe they have a legit chance to win it might be time to see Hunter Greene coming out of the bullpen in the second half.

    • RojoB

      As I said above, do you trust DBell to handle such a treasure?

      • Dennis Westrick

        NO! Bell’s decisions today in handling the relief pitchers is clear evidence he should not be allowed to possibly ruin a young man’s career!

      • greenmtred

        Do you trust Johnson? I haven’t seen evidence that Bell over-uses his pitchers, and that, basically–would be the issue of concern. But I expect that both Greene and Lodolo have innings limits this year, so how much would they be able to contribute anyway?

    • Moon

      Greene and Lodolo are both getting starts every five days and plenty of work in AA. This is what they both need right now. They are working on their pitching with a regular predictable routine. Both are starters and will be starters in the Majors perhaps as soon as next year. If you bring them to the majors right now what will happen? They would be in the pen. Bell would use them 1-2 innings every week perhaps. Consider TJ Antone and how he is used. Recall the amount of work Archie Bradley got last year. As a reminder, he was barely used. I would rather have them continue the learning process in AA or AAA ball as starters going 6-8 innings (I watched Greene last week and he was pretty much spent after 6 innings).

      • Scott C

        Agree. They need to start every five days. Move them to AAA about midway into season.

      • MBS

        Greene and Lodolo should be allowed to continue to start, but once they get closer to their inning limit, then bring them up to finish the year in the pen. I’d much rather them be ready for next year, than help out a 500 team.

  27. RedsMonk65

    “While the sixth inning was wildly disappointing, the fact that the Reds were able to overcome that disaster and score a victory is potentially a huge turning point. The four-game winning streak against rival St. Louis on the road is stirring … ”

    Completely agree. It’ll be interesting to see how things unfold in the days/weeks to come. Makes the Brewers series that much more important.

    Not to beat a dead horse, since it is something everyone here is aware of, but the Reds MUST address their bullpen personnel. Except for one or possibly two, they’re not getting the job done. Without a halfway decent bullpen, this team will go nowhere. We’re not always going to be able to out-slug opponents who pound our relief pitchers. We need guys who can slam the door.

    Bring on the Brewers!

    • Indy Red Man

      No Burnes since he went today. We’re supposed to miss Woodruff too, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they pushed up Peralta & Woodruff for the Reds series.

      J India since May 13 = 21 for 65 (.323 & .450 obp) with 8 runs, 4 hrs, 10 rbis! He’s doing what we needed Senzel to do.

      • RedsMonk65

        India’s definitely a keeper. I hope he continues to get plenty of playing time even after some of our injured players return.

      • RojoB

        It felt in 2019 like that was where Senzel was headed when he came up, until (before injuries), Turner “Launch Angle” Ward changed his swing. Remember that unexplainable disaster? Kid was a middle-away hitter until that. Of course then he got hurt, etc, etc.

    • TR

      It’s important the Reds score early against the Brewers to try and avoid Josh Hader in close late inning games.

      • RedsMonk65

        I agree completely. But with our lousy bullpen, even a should-be rout can turn into a close game on a dime, as we’ve seen. If that continues, it will be hard to avoid Hader.

  28. Indy Red Man

    Ok front office! Let me help you with your job! We are running low on Tylers so call the Twins about righty reliever Tyler Duffy. He’ll be 31 this year and the Twins are going nowhere. He’s had 7 straight 1 inning appearances with 0 er, 1 hit, 2 walks, 8 K

    Last 2 seasons = total 81.2 ip, 57 hits, 113 Ks. He can help us! Get it done!

    • Matt WI

      Intriguing, Indy. What gets it done? Aquino and….?

  29. Matt WI

    Doug… how many Cardinal fan posts got sent to moderation purgatory today? How hath the “best fans in baseball” behaved themselves during a 4 game road sweeeeeeeeep? And how many posts cried about injuries like the Reds aren’t in the same boat?

    • TR

      I noticed a number of fans in the stands dressed in Cincy Red. Are Reds fans now invading St. Louis like Cubbie fans invade Cincy?

  30. Dennis Westrick

    Brew Crew now in first in the MLB Central because they beat the weak sisters of the NL. 3-0 versus AZ. Reds 1-5 versus AZ. Turn that around and the good guys are in 1st

  31. Rednat

    the reds have been consistently inconsistent under Bell’s tenure and this year is no exception. not sure if it is his managing style or just a lack of talent but the consistency just hasn’t been there. if this was a pattern test i would predict a 5 game losing streak but i hope i am wrong.

    hopefully this sweep will garner some momentum for us and we can go on an 8/12 or 10/15 stretch and get into first place in the division

    • Jim t

      It’s a talent issue. Votto, Moose Suarez all making good money and eating up payroll have been inconsistent and regressing. Castillo has been terrible except his last start. AG has been inconsistent. Senzel shows flashes but can’t stay on the field. Those are all key components of this team that Bell has had to manage around. Keeping us within striking distance of the division lead as well as making the playoffs last year are major accomplishments for Bell and staff. The want to be managers on this site need to understand second guessing the manager is much easier then actually winning games and staying in contention.

      I am not a Bell apologist and if I thought it would help I would be screaming for his dismissal.fact is he is doing very well with the hand he has been dealt.

  32. GreatRedLegsFan

    Two needed bullpen arms are actually in the IL (Lorenzen and Hoffman), it’s a tough call for management and all depends upon their timetable to return but, for sure, help is needed like right now, it’s impossible to continue with a four-man bullpen.

  33. Frank Huiges

    How frustrating it must be for Amir Garret, to be just a spectator.
    He desperately wants to be our closer, but has stretches of not getting anybody out. If he gets back to his old, and Lorenzen comes back, the bullpen might look a lot better already.

  34. Jim t

    You guys kill me. We had a 7-0 lead heading into the 6th inning. Why would I push my starter over a 100 pitches or use my best bull pen arms in that situation? If I can’t trust guys to close out a 7 run lead game it’s time to find new guys. This isn’t a Bell issue. The fact he had to use TJ and Sims after leading 7-0 is a player issue and it’s time they get their stuff together. AG has a history of being a very good pitcher time for him to find his stuff again.this team has a shot to win this division of a few guys play to the back of their baseball cards. No way to I mess with the future of Greene or Lodolo by putting them in the pen at this point.

    • AllTheHype

      Agree on your early points. No reason to leave Miley in at 7-0 and nothing wrong with bringing in Feliz and other lesser RPs to clean up the game, However, leaving them in to allow 8 straight batters to reach base and 5 runs WAS BELL’s fault. That is poor managing. No excuse for him to NOT recognize a problem was brewing earlier than that and have Antone in after say, 4 or 5 batters reached base.

      • Jim t

        Early in the season managers will probably stick a bit longer with pitchers in those situations just to see if they can find themselves. Bell understands without developing more Bull pen arms it will be a long season. Can’t use TJ and Sims every night.

      • AllTheHype

        Well, Bell did use them both anyway, and with Antone having only thrown 15 live pitches in 3 days, he was available. Bell was just late pulling that trigger. If Bell had recognized the trouble brewing and brought in Antone 3-4 batters earlier, Sims might have been saved last night.

  35. Old-school

    Paul Fry is a very good lefty bullpen arm for the Orioles who has been a shutdown reliever since the start of the 2020 season. He’s team controlled for 3 more seasons so would be pricey, but would give the Reds a huge upgrade to the bullpen this year and potentially years to come and a. Lefty. Uptick in his FB velocity last 2 years and a high spin slider.

    • Indy Red Man

      Yeah he’d be awesome. They have some other guy thats 31 with a sub 2 era and a ton of Ks. I can’t remember the name, but I think he’s a righty. Fry might be the best reliever they could get though!

  36. RojoB

    I keep meaning to say kudos to Tom M for the “stirring” title.

    It was indeed stirring in myriad ways–and that word has fallen out of usage recently. It made me smile to see the title. Thanks!

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Thank you, Rojo. I apparently found the result very stirring because I used the word in the article as well. 🙂

  37. Roger Garrett

    Only problem Bell has with pen is you never know what each guy may do.Brach was good for a clean inning in game 2 and Felix got Goldy on 3 pitches with the game on the line.When guys give you a clean inning,keep somebody ready and give them another one.Leaving guys in past the 3 batters rule when they don’t have it is on the manager as well.Bull pen pieces have it some days and some days they don’t .Sims has had his moments as has Antone but more good ones then bad.Cubs have a pen right now of no name guys other then Kimbrell that are lights out but it will not last.Reds pitchers hurt themselves with walk so they must clean that up as well.Extend these guys when they have it and get them out when they don’t.Easy to say but hard to do but that’s what managers do.Scripting in advance on who pitches has to be done but not how long or how many pitches.Its feel and eyesight.

  38. SultanofSwaff

    The time to go out and acquire a reliever is NOW. We have the depth and prospect capital to work with. I like the suggestions above. I’d advocate for Richard Rodriguez from the Pirates. Controllable for 3 more seasons. I’d offer Vlad plus any prospect outside our top 8.

  39. BatsLeftThrowsRight

    Reds were 4/38 with runners in scoring position over the four game sweep. Just stunning numbers.

  40. Old-school

    Several posts on relievers and its clear Reds need a lefty reliever ASAP. Go get one Krall and Castellini ok it!

    Another move to make would be to call the Angels who are 7 back of the A’s and 6 back of the Astros with Mike Trout out. Our old friend Raisel Iglesias has an ERA of 3.91 and 10 saves and just finished a 2 inning save, 4K performance Friday. Jose Iglesias is making highlight reels at SS again.

    Trade TJ Friedl and Jeff Hoffman for both.
    Trade simulator accepts the trade. Jose would be owed only another 1 mil or so and has a team option at $ 3 mil next year- perfect mentor for Jose Berrera and late inning back up and insurance policy. Raisel Iglesias would be a rental who could close but $4 million cheaper in mid June than he was on Opening Day. DFA Blandino.

    Raisel Iglesias, Jose Iglesias and a legit lefty bullpen arm could be had with minimal long term losses of prospect capital and modest increases in 2021 budget.

    • RojoB

      I don’t think you can DFA a player while they are on the IL

    • centerfield

      I always loved Jose Iglesias and we should have kept him. I did notice that Jose has 11 errors on the season. Jose was the guy who kept Suarez’ head screwed on straight. India should be tried at SS when Moose returns. Lorenzen needs to be brought up soonest. He can build up his arm pitching 1 inning at a time. We need to keep Blandino, as he is our best reliever.

    • ohiojimwalker

      If R.Iglesias were to end up back with the Reds in 2021, it would probably take a mathematician to figure who should pay what on his salary because the Reds sent almost half the annual amount to the Angels in the trade to get them to take on the other half!

      This would be so Reds for them to end up paying all or virtually all of a player’s annual salary but for him to spend half (give or take) the season playing for someone else!

      • Old-school

        Didnt the know the gymnastics of that. Cots contracts has all kinds of deferrals on Castellanos money and Moose money.

        I give up on Reds finances. They are a broken front office.

      • ohiojimwalker

        @OS
        +100
        So true, broken. Penny wise, pound foolish

      • RojoB

        It sure seems that way. The greenhorn at the swap meet

    • MBS

      Brining back RI would be a mistake, even with our beleaguered pen, but JI would be great. I wish we never let Jose go. If the Reds are actually in it near allstar break, and want to win they will need to bring in a bullpen arm or 3.

  41. Rednat

    Can the reds have their cake and eat it too? i always felt Tyler Mahle would be a great closer. he has the mentality and toughness to be a lights out closer. maybe move him to the bullpen and bring up Santillan or Greene to start in his place so they can continue with their development ?

    • centerfield

      Mahle is currently our best starter. If he ever gets away from the strike ’em all out philosophy of DJ, he will be even better.

  42. Roger Garrett

    Great sweep of the Cards.Of course we are excited but we are still the same team with the same flaws.At the end of the day are ability to score when we don’t homer and how the pen performs will tell the story about this team in 2021.Our offense will depend on how Joey,Moose and Eugenio perform because we will see less of India and Ty Steve.Senzel has no place to play every day either.I don’t see any of these young guys getting enough playing time to keep them sharp even with Bell at the helm.

    • centerfield

      At this point you can’t really count on Senzel for anything. Maybe he can be a super-sub for the rest of the year if he can stay healthy that long. India needs to be working out at SS. Is there some reason India can’t play short? His arm looks strong, he has a lot of range at 2B and he is an offensive sparkplug. I like Farmer, but his offense is weak.

      • Indy Red Man

        I wouldn’t move India or Suarez from where they are now. They’re both solid defensively, especially India at 2B with his range & arm. I would try to give away Moose if at all possible. The Yankees may just fold up shop, but if they don’t then maybe they’d take a shot at Moose? It was a bad signing and all he does is block guys. If they didn’t have Votto’s albatross/neck then it would work, but thats obviously not the case.

  43. LGR

    I know the pens the problem and the biggest thing that needs to be addressed. But.. Alejo Lopez is lighting the minors on fire lol. The guy could complete change this teams offense. Imagine India doing what he’s done in the lead off spot, then adding Lopez to the 9 hole with the OBP he’s had all year. Lopez can play short. Get Perez off the 40 man and get this guy up here.

    • Optimist

      He is on fire, and he’s 25, and he has minimal speed and power, and he’s played 11 games/88 innings at SS since 2015. He may force a role, but he’s neither a SS nor a solution to any problem the Reds have unless someone takes him in a trade.

      • LGR

        They’ve had a problem all year either getting guys on in front of Winker or Big Nick, or getting hits behind them when they’re on base. What you mean he doesn’t solve a problem lol. Guy gets on base. That’s what the team needs offensively in front of those 2.

      • MBS

        I like the idea of Lopez up here, but didn’t he just get moved up to AAA like 2 weeks ago? I’d still rather have Rodriguez brought up as the SS for now. Lopez seems more like a great bench piece. He can play around the infield and switch hit. If he’s good enough he’ll push his way onto the 26 man at some point.

      • LGR

        He’s been up in AAA for a week now. In AA he slashed .362/.437/448. In 6 games in AAA he’s slashing .563/.682/.750 with a 1.432 OPS. Just bring him on up. Those numbers deserve a chance. Any team could use half those numbers lol. Could be the teams Adam Frazier. Would go perfectly in the lead off hole OR hitting 9th in the 2nd lead off hole in front of Wink and Nick.

  44. Indy Red Man

    I guess SD isn’t worried about service time or youth with their 21 yr old lefty Ryan Weathers. He’s at 42 ip now with a 1.91 era. Funny how teams operate when they consider themselves contenders and not always waiting on next year. This Weathers kid is a 1st rounder with a good slider and fb around 93-94, but I don’t think he’s a better prospect then Nick Lodolo.

    • Indy Red Man

      They brought up Lorenzen at 23 and he threw 113 innings for the Reds. No reason whatsoever they couldn’t get 50-60 innings out of Lodolo this year.

    • LGR

      Mike Leake never pitched a minor league game iirc.