Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (45-42)
3 6 0
Milwaukee Brewers (53-36)
5 8 1
W: D. Williams (6-1) L: B. Brach (0-1) S: J. Hader (21)
Statcast | Gamecast Play-by-Play | RN Game Thread


These upcoming seven games with the Brewers bookending the All Star break are sure to engender angst amongst those who live and die with each series. Short of losing all seven, it’s hard to see this series determining much. The fact is, this team is over .500 with a terrible bullpen and little contribution from Suárez, Senzel, Moustakas, a poor start of the season from Luis Castillo and repeated missed starts due to injuries to Sonny Gray. The Reds have kept their heads above water anyway. That tells me this next 7 games won’t seal the Reds’ fate. It’s what the Reds’ owner does or does not do that will.

Game 87

The Redlegs loaded the bases when the first 3 batters reached, but came up empty when Joey Votto and Tyler Naquin struck out and Eugenio Suárez hit a soft liner to end the inning. Tyler Mahle returned the favor loading the bases in the bottom of the 1st, then fumbled a tapper in front of the plate, missing the force at home, and giving the Brewers their first run. Mahle would then walk Jace Peterson to plate another run. Brewers 2, Reds 0.

Second inning and the Reds would load the bases again with one out as neither pitcher had found his feet yet. Winker would strike out (he’s 2 for his last 26). Castellanos would also K, leaving the bases loaded for the second straight inning. Brewers pitcher Adrian Hauser had already thrown 51 pitches. Mahle would get out the bottom of the inning unscathed, but his pitch count was now 51.

Bullpen game not just on the horizon, but in the rearview mirror with the words OBJECTS MAY BE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR. Brewers 2, Reds 0.

Votto would drive a ball to the wall that right fielder momentarily had in his glove, but couldn’t come up with, resulting in double. Naquin would beat out an infield single. Suárez would hit into a 6-4-3 double play and following a Tucker Barnhart flyout, the Reds had now stranded 7 batters through 3 innings. Mahle would finish out the inning walking his 4th batter of the game and the pitch count was now up to 65. Brewers 2, Reds 0.

The Reds would load the bases for the 3rd time in the 5th inning, and manager Craig Counsell would signal the end of Hauser’s night with a tap on the arm. Jake Cousins would not be the answer for the Brewers as consecutive wild pitches and a Barnhart single would give the Reds the lead. Reds 3, Brewers 2.

But… in the bottom of the 6th, inclement leather would blow in and cost the Reds the lead. After a double by Omar Narváez, Keston Hiura would hit a deep fly ball to left that Winker Charlie Brown’d. Reds 3, Brewers 3.

With Mahle’s night done, Josh Osich would enter the game in the 7th and walk one, but get 2 outs before giving way to Art Warren. Warren would give up a stolen base, then a base hit to centerfield. But, Naquin would make a fine throw to Barnhart, who would make a fine tag to end the inning. Reds 3, Brewers 3.

It would unravel in the bottom of a 8th when Brad Brach gave up a 2-run blast to Avisail Garciá. Brewers 5, Reds 3.

The Arms

Tyler Mahle’s night: 6.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 6 K, 4 BB
Josh Osich: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 K
Art Warren: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 K
Brad Brach: 0.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 K, 1 BB
Cionel Pérez: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 K, 1 BB

What Did We Learn Today?

Tyler Mahle is a keeper. After struggling early, he refused to give in. This is what you want to see from a veteran, but he’s a young guy who’s still developing. He and Miley have kept the Reds afloat.

Final Thoughts

We know how bad this bullpen is. I’d have more to say, but we’ve all watched it and wondered when/if ownership is going to support this team who seems to fight back every night in the face of a deficit. This isn’t like the past when the Reds would get behind and just fade. Most nights, their bats show up in the late innings.

Still, the Reds didn’t hit tonight. Two runs came on gift wild pitches. That was never going to get it done.

Jesse Winker’s final at bat was an object lesson on why this league needs robot umps.

On Deck for the Redlegs

Cincinnati Reds vs. Milwaukee Brewers

July 9 at 8:10pm ET

Wade Miley (6-4, 3.06 ERA) vs. Eric Lauer (3-3, 4.11 ERA)

115 Responses

  1. Gregmlb

    I think everything you said from umps to ownership is pretty right on. Bell should’ve gotten tossed after that Farmer AB, but he just sits there. I know the backend of that Brewers BP is good, but the reds looked likes they had no business being in the same stadium. That could possibly be the worst I have seen Major Leaguers go up against the opposing pitching. The 3 pitchers combined for 32 pitches. It’s painful to watch Winker and Suarez play right now.

    • Angelo

      Yelich was clearly was off the bag breaking up the double play and Bell asked for a review and the umps said no interference. Bell just calmly accepted their response. No fire in him. Bring back LOU!

      • Matthew Habel

        David Bell has 14 ejections in 309 games as a manager which is 22 games per ejection, by far the leader among active managers. Lou Piniella averaged 55 games per ejection over his career.

  2. Hanawi

    Tough loss with too many squandered chances. Not sure I agree that the Reds would still be in it if they fall on their faces in this 7 games series. Already 7 back now and looking like 5ish games back of the WC. They aren’t as good as any of the NL West teams right now, so the best chance is probably the division, where they are closer to 4th than 1st. Lots of games with the other division teams not named Milwaukee after these games.

  3. Doc

    Always the bullpen. However, the first two innings are where this game was lost. This one was on the offense, or lack thereof, and on the starting pitcher in the first inning, both his pitching and his defensive prowess, or lack thereof.

    No bullpen is going to be perfect for an entire season, especially when the rest of the team has had victory handed to them in the first two innings and didn’t take it. You can’t excuse the entire team for not getting the job done, then single out the bullpen as being incompetent.

    • MFG

      Please sit Suarez! He is terrible and he was hitting fifth last night?
      He is pretty much an automatic out. Winker is in a slump right now but has been consistent up until a week ago. Suarez has been consistent as well, consistently bad!

      • steven ross

        I agree. If it’s April, you get a mulligan. May, you’re struggling, June, you’re in the slump but it’s July and Suarez is batting .177! That’s more than a slump, it’s a hole in the lineup and a problem. How much rope are we going to give this guy?

        Suárez would hit into a 6-4-3 double play….

      • beelicker

        Here’s a thing you could do .. check out Geno’s split statistics somewhere and find out that over the last 3o games he’s been performing .215/.298/.383 … or over the last 7 games .231/.259/.385 … which might even suggest an uptrend … i know, still not great, but certainly better than that myopic fixation on that .177 you keep pulling your hair out and screaming about

        These 7, 15 & 3o game stats are right at the top of players’ stats pages and they give a more representative picture of what they might have ‘done for me lately’ … nothing can be done now about the numbers already in the book, but you might obtain a little better outlook. 3o games is a significant number to base an informed opinion on

  4. J

    I asked in the other thread, and I’ll ask again: does anyone remember Suarez being lifted for a pinch hitter, EVER? With all the moves Bell makes on a daily basis, how is it possible that he’ll seemingly NEVER pinch hit for a guy who strikes out a lot, hits into a lot of double plays, has trouble driving in runners from third with less than two outs, and is hitting well under .200 for the season? That’s a BAD hitter even if he has above-average power. Meanwhile, there’s a switch-hitting .333 batter on the bench who usually puts the ball in play and has some speed, and Bell saw NO opportunity to use him in a game where they left 10,000 runners on base? Oh, and the switch-hitter plays the same position as the bad hitter. It really does all seem to be about not hurting feelings, because there’s no way that it doesn’t make sense to at least occasionally lift Suarez for a pinch hitter in certain situations.

    • bug

      Careful. We don’t like negativity on this board. Just saying.

      • bug

        I’m just kidding, J. Of course you are right.

    • beelicker

      No manager is gonna pinch hit a new raw rookie for a vet like that. That would be putting both of those players in untenable situations … and to what end? You might actually need a pinch hitter for real later, there’s only 2 utility infielders on the bench and pinch hitting out of spite or for punishment isn’t really a major league thing. Not gonna happen …

      Best thing you can do is accept they’re gonna roll with Saurez until they don’t

      • RojoB

        “ Best thing you can do is accept they’re gonna roll with Saurez until they don’t”

        I refuse to accept this. I am resigned to it only.

      • J

        “No manager is gonna pinch hit a new raw rookie for a vet like that.”

        I love the argument that it’s unfair to criticize Bell for making the same mistakes other managers make. It’s the equivalent of “Hey, every mechanic is dishonest, so why are you complaining about your mechanic ripping you off? That’s just what they do!”

        We seem to treat sports differently than we treat almost everything else in the world. It’s okay to criticize mechanics, postal workers, doctors, politicians, judges, etc., but whenever anyone points out a baseball manager’s obvious mistakes, there are always people who’ll defend it based on “that’s what all managers do” or “he has more information than we do” or “have YOU ever managed a team?” I’ll never understand it.

      • beelicker

        Well there are legitimate reasons they do it (which i gave some) and it’s not dishonesty … which your argument is

        NO manager is going to pinch hit a rookie in his first week in the show for his veteran starter in the 1st, 3rd or 5th inning just because men are on base. It’s an insult to the intelligence of any rational adult to suggest otherwise. At this time, Saurez had hit safely in the previous 6 straight games for a BA during the streak of .278

      • J

        Even if every manager on earth would make the same mistake, it’s still a mistake. You can defend it all you want, but a mistake is a mistake. Managers used to have position players bunt all the time until eventually they realized it’s almost always a mistake, and now they don’t. These mistakes never get fixed if everyone falls back on the “I’m just doing what everyone else does” explanation. Someone needs to be the first person to stop doing it.

      • J

        Also, I think there are many examples of managers “embarrassing” their star players in one way or another, and it often gets results. Sometimes managers yank a star player out of a game for not hustling or ignoring a sign, and most people say “good for him. It sends a message.” Bell is not one of those managers.

  5. Maloney63

    Bell will play Suarez until management unloads one or the other! Another 8 LOB for Geno. Just another day at the office. I sure wish we were playing the Brewers while Winker was streaking instead of slumping. Maybe Akiyama should take his place for a few days but Bell won’t do it. And it’s been a tough few days for Brach!

  6. Indy Red Man

    “Short of losing all seven, it’s hard to see this series determining much”

    I respectfully but totally disagree! 2-5 puts the Reds 9 games back. Are we talking just mathematically alive or actually in the race? 9 back and the front office will turn their phones off for sure. They may not do anything if they were 2 games back. Granted this team is not a WS contender so I wouldn’t mortgage the future either, but they could bring in some help!

    • Richard Fitch

      Wait a minute. In the last 3 weeks, the Cubs have collapsed. They’ve lost 9 of their last 10. The Brewers won 11 straight to put themselves in the driver’s seat. This has all happened since June 22nd.

      So, you’re telling me with 75 games left in the season, losing the next two series to the Brewers puts them out of the race? Have you been paying attention to how quickly things just changed at the top of the NL Central?

      All I’m saying is that the Reds are a good ballclub that just needs to get healthy in the right places and maybe convince the owner to spend some money.

      If you think the Reds aren’t capable of pulling off an extended winning streak, or that the Brewers are too good to stumble, say so. I’ve seen the Reds just sweep the Cubs, the Cardinals on the road, the Rockies, and yes, the Brewers recently. They still have a lot of games left with the Pirates. Yes, it would make it worse if the Reds don’t play well over the next 7 games. But treating this stretch like it’s late August or September is very wrong, IMO.

      • Pete’s Prince Valiant

        Could not agree more.

      • jon vera

        The Brewers are not the cubs. lol.

      • MFG

        Richard, good points but allot of us fans think ownership might pack it in if we are 8-9 games out shortly after the All star game. We “could” be sellers shortly after the All star game.

      • TR

        I’m in complete agreement, Richard. Change in the standings sneaks up on you in the long crowded baseball season. There’s a half a season to go and remember what a difference a few days make.

      • Indy Red Man

        Well I think the duck hunting in Wisconsin is supposed to be pretty good so if Woodruff, Hader, Burnes, and Peralta all shoot each other then 9 games isn’t so daunting.

        So yeah….I’m saying their pitching is too good and we’ll probably go Cub and ship guys out and wave the white flag if we’re 8-9 out by the deadline.

      • Indy Red Man

        Willy Adames has a .915 ops since Milw picked him up. Guess what other team needs a SS? I wouldn’t like the Reds chances that well if they were 3 back now because the front office doesn’t care and that filters down to the clubhouse. They’ve had 3 months to bring in 1-2 proven relievers and won’t do it? Doolittle and Brach are 35 or whatever. Why not unretire Sam LeCure too!

      • MuddyCleats

        Tend to agree. Brew Crew rolls w/ their SP, backend of BP and timely hitting. Very easy to see one or two pitchers have arm problems in the 2nd 1/2 which could slow their roll significantly. Likewise, Brewers’ BA is last in NL, yet rank 6th in runs scored. I don’t see them as unbeatable

  7. James

    Bell makes to many pitching changes. He should have left Warren in the game he only faced 1 batter and has been very good. We just made a big play to knock off the run at the plate. As bad as our bullpen has been why keep running new guys out there when it may be their turn to be lousy. We do not have any quality relievers except possibly Antone. The other night using 3 guys in the 9th inning and trying to finish with Garrett. Give us all a break. Analytics are being used to much by our coaching staff.

  8. LGR

    If you’re gonna play Suarez, you at least gotta get him out of that 6 spot. He should bat in front of the pitcher. If Barnharts hitting where Suarez is tonight, this game probably ends differently. Batting order matters. You don’t want your worst base hit hitter hitting behind the 4 or 5 guys who get on base a lot. It just doesn’t make sense. Tucker may hit into a few DP’s of his own, but no where near the amount Suarez does and strikes out way less. Also, get Lopez back in there for the love of God.

    • beelicker

      Saurez *was* on a 6 game hitting streak since his little 2-game refresher and had just ascended to .18o or the first time since April 18th and was working on a .28o-something July

    • Richard Fitch

      No. Batting order doesn’t matter that much. Maybe you don’t believe in analytics, but that doesn’t change the fact that batting orders have far less effect on the outcomes of games that most fans think. Yes, you want to have your 5 best hitters at the top of the lineup in some order–but after that, it’s mostly meaningless. Blaming the manager for batting a guy 6th instead of 8th is a waste of time.

      And frankly, if you have 5 guys who get on base a lot, you really don’t have to worry about the guys batting 6-8.

      • LGR

        What a bad take. Of course lineup order makes a difference. Even your 6-8 order matters. Without even looking at the stats, I’m just going to assume Suarez is one of the worst, if not the worst hitter on the team when it comes to runner on 3rd less than 2 outs and getting the runner in. Your number 6 hitter is more likely to get those situations than your 8 hitter. You move Suarez to the 8 spot, he’ll still get those chances every now and then, but not nearly as often. And hey, Suarez still has is solo home run potential. If our number 8 hitter is hitting 40 homers, I’d say that’s a plus. It’s a win win, the 8 spot usually get less pitches to hit with the pitcher behind them, which is good for Suarez. He’ll still get his occasional homer and get more walks to help turn the lineup over. I don’t get how you can say order doesn’t matter. You want a guy who at least puts the ball in play hitting behind your front 5.

      • LGR

        Couldn’t disagree more. Putting your non contact guy behind all of your on base guys makes little no nonsense. If Suarez were to get less pitches to see hitting in front of the pitcher, it’s a win win. He’ll still hit his occasional homer, and should take more walks to turn the lineup over. Don’t get the take of order not mattering.

      • Melvin

        I would agree that batting orders DO matter.

      • greenmtred

        It’s received wisdom that batting orders matter, and I always believed it, too. Baseball is a complicated game that inspired the national imagination for years, and there are lots other examples–like sacrifice bunts. The thing is, when you take the time to analyze what actually happens over the course of many games, a different bunch of wisdom emerges, ready to be received. If you can’t support your contention with factual data, it’s myth.

      • Melvin

        To me saying a batting order doesn’t matter is as big a myth as saying a manager doesn’t matter.

    • beelicker

      If it’s any consolation, Saurez maintains his best split of any position in the batting order at #6 = .237/.312/.464 (well, except for the too small sample size to really count 2/7 = .429 at #7) … second is leading off = .211/.268/.447

      You’d also still bat RH Saurez #6 to break up the Votto/Naquinn/Barnhart lefty bloc as well, albeit Saurez hits LHP worse than RHP (hoping Counsell doesn’t know that)

      • greenmtred

        The manager matters, but probably not as much as frustrated fans imagine, so we can call that a question, rather than a myth. As for batting order: The data are clear, evidently. That doesn’t mean that the data are specifically predictive, but it does mean that, over time, batting order makes little difference–aside from generally putting your best hitters higher in order.

  9. beelicker

    Well at least tonight the other side also showed little sign or inclination of truly seizing the moment, either, plus like capacity to needlessly and embarrasingly otherwise gift away runs on the pressure stage

    I saw a lot of hangdog and petulance and lack of positive focus from Winker all night and really don’t see any benefit after the game is over to castigate the umpires like he did. No good reason whatsoever antagonizing them after the fact of game over, just for reason they might not keep a subtle lingering grudge like that crew in San Diego after Votto’s explosion. That last pitch looked like enough of a strike to me …

    Troubling that Winker and Castellanos appeared that they *could* have caught both of the difficult long flies to the wall they failed to execute, same with Mahle in position on the little squibber in front of the plate, making it 2 runs that could have been prevented

    Mahle’s quick signature 0-2 counts that become adventures fit the same mold

    Naquinn’s conceding on 2 strikes was not a good look, albeit he ultimately battled back from it nicely enough after their pitcher let him off the hook. There was another lost opportunity for Milwaukee to have immediately shut them down hard & fast, missed. Naquinn looked a little mystified, to say the least, to be still catching ‘instruction’ afterwards in the dugout after scoring

    • beelicker

      Oh yeah, salute to Tucker Barnhart being a mensch tonight at least … real easy guy to root for ever since first time i ever saw him in spring training as a rookie and his walkup was ‘Kryptonite’

      • Jim Walker

        Maybe mitigate your Barnhart feelings a little by considering he is typically the guy calling all the wasted pitches that get Mahle from 0-2 to 3-2 on so many hitters?

      • beelicker

        Well that depends where he’s setting up his targets, whether Mahle agrees or shakes him off, and the actual precise execution of the gameplan (formulated in committee with Mgr & PC), doesn’t it? Also the pitcher’s temperament. Securely gripping, handling and throwing a baseball should be a pitcher’s forte’, correct? Mahle’s inability to execute on that dribbler isn’t suggesting something about Barnhart’s ability to have caught it

      • Jim Walker

        I agree on the dribbler. Looked like TB was going to try and make the play unassisted till Mahle charged in. Given Mahle did that TB had no choice but to stay home.
        See my comment elsewhere on this thread for my opinion in TB’s game calling. In short, I believe he sometimes gets lost in calling the perfect game and loses some situational awareness in the process.

  10. Old-school

    Reds bullpen is worst in MLB at BB/9 at 4.91.
    They are worst in MLB in HR/9 at 1.5
    They are 3rd worst in MLB in ERA at 5.22.

    That would be a target area to upgrade. With Lorenzen, Hoffman, Santillan in the mix, that should be fixed internally from the right side. Osich might be ok, but dont see any reason to think Perez/Garrett, or Doolittle will give them strong reliable consistent pitching late in games that matter. Doolittle’s numbers on allowing inherited runners to score is very poor and Garrett and Perez consistently contribute to those league worst walk/HR/ERA numbers.

    Cant win games if the bullpen is walking guys, giving up home runs, and allowing inherited runners to score.

    • Melvin

      “Reds bullpen is worst in MLB at BB/9 at 4.91.
      They are worst in MLB in HR/9 at 1.5
      They are 3rd worst in MLB in ERA at 5.22.”

      Yeah but besides that they’re not that bad. hahaha

  11. AllTheHype

    Would Lopez have had 8 LOB last night? Suarez plays so much because mgmt wants to recoup value from that contract, not because he’s the best option. Shame.

      • LGR

        Yes, but also hit the ball on the screws on a few of those outs. And putting the ball in play was something they needed last night.

      • RojoB

        And how is that any different than Suárez’s 0 for 4?

        López rarely strikes out. Putting balls in play makes good things happen. Even a GIDP in the first inning with bases loaded and no outs would have scored 1 run in the first.

        Not sure why so many seem satisfied to let failing players just keep plugging along interminably

      • greenmtred

        Well, for one thing, 0 for 4 is one less failure than 0 for 5. Suarez is having terrible year in many ways, but he also has hit the ball hard and had bad luck, and has hit a fair number of homers and accounted for a fair number of runs and, as someone else pointed out, he’s started to show signs of climbing at least part way out of the hole. I’m fine–not that it matters–with playing Lopez in his place some times, but unless the Reds are actually going to acquire somebody who could replace Suarez’s typical production, they need to–wait for it–get him going, if possible.

  12. Mark Moore

    Not scoring in the first two innings was the gut punch for me. Just couldn’t bear to watch it. Lousy strike zone calling once again didn’t help, but that seems to be the new normal.

    Regroup for today and try and pull out some wins and crooked numbers.

  13. Klugo

    Your last line sums up my thought on the game, but it wasn’t just the last call. It was all game and it was inconsistent. That guy shouldn’t be calling balls and strikes. It’s time for automated strike zones.
    The other annoying part is the other umps chirping back at our dugout. We’re going to have to dela with those umps the rest of the series and they’ll be behind the plate, too. Of all the referees in all the sports, umpires hold the most power and they annoy me the most.

    • Hotto4Votto

      I didn’t get to watch the game last night. Were the umps really chirping and getting into it with our bench? That seems to be a bad look on their part. They’re supposed to be impartial, getting into verbal back and forths with the bench doesn’t seem to support being impartial. Either give a warning, toss an egregious violator (if there was someone who crossed the line) out of the game, or ignore it. Don’t play into it.

      I’m beyond ready for robo-umps behind the plate.

      • Klugo

        On their way to the clubhouse after the game, Winker and Bell were letting the home plate umpire have it. Some of the other umps had something’s to say ala the Votto incident that seemingly got a rise from the Reds brass.

      • Klugo

        By brass I meant players and coaches. Not sure if those vampires in the front office have a pulse though.

      • RojoB


        I see- well good for the brass then!

        And +1 for the characterization of the FO

  14. Roger garrett

    Haven’t seen Lopez since he went 0-5 and we won’t.Reds could set Suarez but they won’t.Bob could get pen help but he won’t.Reds could play 14 over the rest of the way but they won’t because of what I just said.Brewers could play 500 the rest of the way but they won’t

  15. Old Big Ed

    The Reds lost this game because in the first two innings, their 2-3-4-5-6 hitters all came up with the bases loaded, and went 0-for-5. It was against a pitcher that they had seen twice already this season. Meanwhile, Mahle (as is his wont) fumble-bummed through the first inning and gave up two silly runs. But for that, the Reds win.

    The ump was indeed awful. He wasn’t the reason that the Reds hitters didn’t swing at hittable first pitches, though.

    Winker should have had the ball in LF that led to a run in the 6th, but it would have been a nice catch. And Brach threw one bad pitch, a fastball that Chris Welsh was begging him not to throw. Brach threw 5 pitches to Narvaez; FB, FB, change, FB, FB. The fastballs were 92, 93, 93 and 93. Welsh was correct, and Barnhart should have recognized it, too. I love Barnhart (Old Big Ed wore the tools of ignorance himself), and Brach was the one who threw it, but it was a bad pitch to call and throw.

    • Jim Walker

      Agree pretty much down the line. For all his good qualities, at times Barnhart gets too involved with the side game of calling pitches versus focus on the main game situation. Bauer and Gray barked about it last year. Castillo earlier this season. Still, a person would think an aged vet like Brach would hold out for the pitch he wanted to throw in that situation last night.

      And for all Votto’s greatness over the last going on 15 years, just once when he came up with runners on 2nd and 3rd or bases loaded with zero or 1 out, I wish he would dump his side game of hitting philosophy and adopt the old Tony Perez (and others) axiom of see the ball, hit the ball. See a pitch like the first pitch he saw and took for a called strike in the 1st Thursday and drive it toward the gap. At the worst, you’ve traded an out for a run. That’s better than eventually striking out or rolling over a ball for a GIDP.

      • beelicker

        Both strikes taken were changeups in that at bat, timing likely an issue?

        1. outside lower middle 3rd rectangle
        2. inside bottom corner at the knees

      • Jim Walker

        @bee> But in the end after going to 3-2, the 1st pitch turned out to be the best pitch to lift and drive Votto saw in the entire AB.

        I think JV has always been something of a guess hitter untill/ unless he got to 2 strikes because at least through 2017 or so he (correctly) had confidence in his ability to get to any pitch which might be called a strike and at least spoil it. Now I think he guesses more because he can’t defend the fringes as well; and it is more obvious he is guessing because in the end he strikes out more.

      • beelicker

        Pitch #6 that he struck out on, a 94 mph fastball was the best pitch he saw, followed by pitch #2 93 mph FB up in the zone he took for a ball … that woulda been for the sac fly

        So based on the latter pitches he needs to decide to swing for an out at the first pitch of an at bat … o … k

        He’s been indiscriminately swinging for the fences lots ever since he came off the disabled list ( PA)

      • Jim Walker

        @Bee> we just disagree on the pitches. #2 and #6 to my thought are both pitcher’s pitchers. They are both too high for him to get on top of, making them pop up bait at the speeds they were thrown. #2 in particular is clear up out of the zone and definitely a pitch to take at 0-1. #6 he no choice but to go after because of the count; but it is too high to do much with.

        I’ll stand by #1 being the best hitter’s pitch of the sequence, the easiest to lift and drive because it was waist to thigh high and all he had to do was drop his bat on it as the saying goes.,lock_state=final,game_tab=play-by-play,game=633351

  16. LDS

    For all Reds fans that lament about “small market” and losing money, here is a short article on how the money game is actually played. There are longer more detailed articles but bottom line, Castellini and the ownership group is making a bundle while fielding a suboptimal team. We, the taxpayers, are footing the bill for the Reds’ “losses”. So taking on more payroll increases his write off. I’ll bet dollars to donuts that Castellini pays a lower total tax rate than most of us here.

  17. JB

    The Reds play the Pirates 9 times in the last 18 games of the season. That’s nice but will the Reds be even close to Milwaukee? The bullpen has its moments but they always seem to revert back to who they have been all season. You can put lipstick on a turd but it’s still a turd. You cant keep relying on Winker and Castellanos every night. At some point they are going to struggle because it’s a long season and every hitter does. You cant rely on two rookies as well. Veterans arent getting it done and Farmer has done a decent job but he isnt an everyday Shortstop. He is a great utility player. This team is flawed and has done a remarkable job to be where they are but they need help. Front office has done nothing for them since they signed Moustakas and Castellanos. I don’t expect Lorenzen to be the savior because he hasnt pitched all season. He will struggle at first. Every team is looking for bullpen help. Relief pitchers will not come cheaply this year. As many injuries as teams have had this year, no player will be cheap this year. It’s going to cost you. Alot of teams can win it all this year. Teams will be lining up for Story. I’m not sure I want to mortgage the future. This team has a lot of young talent to contend in the next couple of years.

  18. Dennis Westrick

    Let’s see, Brewers worst hitting team in the NL! So, let’s walk batters or hit them with a pitch so they don’t actually have to try and score runs by hitting the ball. This loss was due to Mahle’s failure to pitch to contact (not a HBP contact) in the early innings AND the Reds epic ineptness in scoring runs in the first 2 innings! Frustrating but we move on and get back up on the horse today!

    • MuddyCleats

      Great pt Dennis and surely it is something the Coaching Staff has talked to the Pitchers about? IMO, Mahle is too deliberate – thinking too much between pitches. Get the ball and go already? There may be too much emphasis on trying to throw all your pitches instead of establishing your FB first and then playing off of it? It was obvious he didn’t have command of his split last night!

      I have a similar question on our hitters, Like Mahle, Houser was struggling to throw strikes, but when he did, his out pitch was down and in to RHH. Surely this could be relayed to the hitters or watched on video b4 your next AB? Guy has very good arm side run on his FB and his change. Personally as a RHH, I’d be a touch more off the plate on this guy

  19. docproc

    Was Tony Santillan in MIL last night?
    If so, why did Cionel Perez get in the game but Santillan didn’t?

    • RojoB

      That’s a lot like asking “why do mullet jump?”

  20. LDS

    None of Suarez, Votto, Naquin, and Winker, who is in an extended slump, are hitting LH’ers. If Bell is serious about winning, a questionable assertion, start Lopez, Stephenson at 1st, Aquino, and Akiyama with Barnhart at catcher. I don’t really care about the contract argument. Everyone points to analytics until the numbers go against them.

    • beelicker

      Barnhart vs LHP = .130/.160/.304 24 PA

  21. Roger Garrett

    We are a team with many holes and until they are filled it just is what it is.No reason to believe we can catch the Brew Crew because they are trying to get better and we are waiting for our injured players to return.Thats not a plan for us but rather hope and I have seen that movie for years now.Reds didn’t even show up last night on offense or defense.Sleep walking the entire game and if the Brewers could hit or wouldn’t have wild pitched 2 runs home we wouldn’t have even been in the game.Can you believe we were actually ahead 3-2 and can you believe we had 1 hit in the last 5 innings in the most important game to date.Ragging on Suarez or Bell won’t fix this even though they are part of the problem IMO but there are just so many issues with this team who knows where to begin.There is just no accountability any more for players that do not perform or who don’t show up to play each and every day.Just to be clear a player that strikes out is trying but eventually performance must be addressed as does guys that aren’t hustling out of the box or on the basepaths or in the field.Last nights game had all of those and nothing will be done and the same will be right back out there tonight.Those issues start at the top and its obvious there is no leadership in place to deal with it.Losing is accepted.

  22. Jim Walker

    The Reds performance disappointed me. Take your pick of any of the batters in the 2-6 slots who didn’t get a guy in from 3B with less than 2 outs. And for the overwhelming part, they couldn’t even get the ball in play in these situations to at least trade an out for a run or give the Brewers a chance to make a bad play.

    The thorniest issue for the Reds from my viewpoint is that their offense simply works a lot better when Tyler Stephenson is in the middle of it than when he isn’t.

    Yeah, Barnhart plays his heart out every time he is on the field and is more than carrying his projected weight on offense. Votto is not the Votto of a decade ago; but on the whole, he has played well since he came back from injury a month ago. However, neither of these facts change the fact the offense as a unit performs better when one of these guys makes way for Stephenson.

    Youth was served out of perceived necessity to open the door wide for Jonathan India. One way or another the door needs to be opened wider for Stephenson.

    • LDS

      Platoon Stephenson at 1st against LH’ers. Start Barnhart at catcher. Let Stephenson share 1B against RH’ers or give Barnhart occasional relief. Just quit pretending that Votto-Suarez is the Reds’ “best lineup”. The numbers don’t support that.

      • beelicker

        Today’s starter is a LHP which means Stephenson will be fulfilling his #1 role on this team, catching when LHP starts against. This is how TS actually performs so far vs LHP:

        .299/.365/.537 now … these numbers:


        are what Tucker Barnhart has performed trying to hit LHP this season. Less than Saurez numbers. Catchers also take a beating much more so than other positions and also need more days off to keep strong for the whole season, so for 2 reasons this is where TS needs to play, when LHP goes and Barnhart needs his rest on the bench

        Now here are Votto’s current splits vs RHP:


        so he doesn’t really need anyone splitting time with him when RHP is on the mound. Next #s are what TS hits vs RHP (with very little power):

        .268/.388/.366 so this is what you want to take Votto out of the lineup for vs RHP

      • LDS

        We’ll see if JV holds up and if so play him. Otherwise, I’ll take my chances. However, making Stephenson “a role player” is not in the team’s best interest, anymore than sitting India and others would be.

      • beelicker


        This ^^^ is what Barnhart is actually doing vs RHP. You want to take him down for Stephenson’s results (and inferior catching defensively)


      • Jim Walker

        The tough baseball decision is that for as long as Votto is around and producing vs RH pitching, Stephenson needs to be the primary catcher, period. Find a way to spot Barnhart maybe 3 starts in every 10 games to keep TS fresh.

        Starting TS at 1B vs LH pitching exposes Barnhart. Now if they had a “real” SS and thus Kyle Farmer available to take starts at C or 1B vs LH pitching (which may have been the “master” plan 8 months ago), that might be a better case situation.

      • LDS

        Jim Walker, I can see that as an option. What I can’t justify rationally is starting a slate of “stars” every game that can’t hit against LH’ers. It adds up to a bunch of losses.

  23. Jim Walker

    Something appears to be going on with Jesse Winker aside from his slumping bottom line. Maybe he is playing hurt or has a physical issue. Maybe he has baseball issues between his ears. Maybe something in his everyday life is distracting him. The Reds need to figure out what is going on with him and help him get back on the beam. They need the player he was the first 2+ months of the season to replace the guy he has been the last several weeks.

    • MuddyCleats

      somewhat agree, he was more worried about his neckless last night and the charm which was pulled off by the fence than catching the ball. A tough catch yes, but one he had room to make.

      • Jim Walker

        I thought the catch was really little more than routine, especially compared to the improved defense Winker has demonstrated this season. He was there as he stepped onto the track, the ball hit well down into his glove but not off the heel or side.

        The irony was it looked like if he had held onto the ball, he would have been gathered and not had the bad experience with the fencing. It was only after the ball popped loose and he was flailing for it that he got out of kilter and ran out of room.

  24. Gpod

    Do you think MLB has discussions with home-plate umpires after games like last night where he was calling strikes on pitches that were clearly off the plate….pointing it out to the umpire and telling him to stop calling them strikes? I do not understand how the batter knows it’s not a strike, but the umpire doesn’t…….and I do not buy the argument that the hitter is supposed to adjust to the umpires strike zone….it’s either a strike or it’s not a strike….should not be left to interpretation every night depending on who the umpire is or how he decides to call the game that night. If it goes to robo-balls & strikes in the future…the umpires did it to themselves.

    • RojoB

      Our own Nick Kirby is contributing to a social media flood of awareness that last night’s HP umpire was arrested in Ohio’s BIG human trafficking sting last year.

      If he isn’t suspended today then MLB becomes even more of a farce than it already is. And why didn’t we know this before?

      A lot of wandering standards, much like a wandering strike zone.

    • Dennis Westrick

      It appeared to me, at least the first 2 innings, that Mahle was getting “squeezed” by the HP umpire! Still, no excuse for Mahle not forcing the Brewers to actually hit the ball instead of letting them walk to 1st base!

    • Jim Walker

      I don’t have details or links off the top of my head, but I have read several places that umpires are graded versus the official MLB automated pitch tracking system which is now operational at all venues.

      In one article I read, the MLB representative cooperating with the writer tried to paint it as more of a collaborative effort than a straight-up evaluation. Apparently, the umpire has an opportunity to explain why he called certain pitches differently than they appeared on the tracking system. MLB says this is to improve not just the umpiring but also the tracking hardware and software.

      Regardless, inconsistency between umps and even with a given ump both within a game and between various games is still an issue.

      However compared to a couple of decades ago, I see huge changes in how games are called. In general, pitchers do not get the huge horizontal zone off the plate they used to get (especially on breaking pitches moving away from the plate). Instead, they do get a much greater vertical zone, both at the top and bottom. In particular, pitchers never used to get a call on a high breaking ball which dipped to just the very top of the zone at the very back of the plate. Now that has become a bread and butter pitch for many pitchers when they are looking for a called strike. I have even heard some media commentators call it a hung strike.

    • RojoB

      It works. Good stuff. But interesting that it really didn’t give all that much advantage to Brewers

  25. JA

    The spirit of the strike zone is to determine if a given pitch is hittable or not.
    The Umpire yesterday was terrible when compared to a computer (for both sides from my perspective)
    However, that is part of the game. Mental strength to recover from a bad call is a skill, and as a skill needs to be trained in the two sides (pitchers and batters). The ones who keep engaged to a bad decision, most of the times will loose de duel pitching-batting.

    BTW… 3rd base coach played very conservative in India’s call on 1st innig . KC 3B coach against reds did the same twice in one of the games this week. KC lost that game to reds.

    It has been said Reds base running is questionable… i wonder how 1B and 3B coaches is factoring here

    • Jim Walker

      Agree about India being held at 3B in the 1st. I realize the ball barely cleared the infielder’s reach and India had to hold close to 2B for that, but it was down quickly and rolled fairly deep into the gap. I couldn’t believe it when I realized that was India standing at 3B and not Winker arriving there from 1B on the play.

      It passed through my mind that Bell pulled India from the one game in KC and made a comment about him not being able to run at nearly full speed due to injury. If his best speed last night wasn’t enough to get him home from 2B on that play, why is he even playing (answer: because Freeman is the alternative).

      • JA

        (Lopez plays also 2B. He did it well this week, and dont’ risk for an enlarged injury)

        Can someone say India would have scored yesterday? Mmmm nobody knows. But what really matters is whAt is the philosophy running the bases in this team (if any) conservative or aggressive (a third option is situational). But the point here is… are 1B/3B coaches playing actively the game based on an strategy or just watching it in a privileged position on the field?

  26. beelicker

    Yeh, they embarass their players to end their 6 game hitting streaks all the time

  27. JA

    Line up for today (espn)


    • LDS

      Bell being Bell. Slots 2,4,5, and 8 are absolutely not hitting LH’ers. Lopez and Stephenson should be in the lineup today.

      • JA

        Maybe his strategy is take brewers b y surprise ?

        It’s not fair for Miley

      • Roger Garrett

        Nothing we can do LDS.Veteran privilege today.Lopez and Stephensen are rookies.Not our best lineup against a lefty in a game we really need.

    • J

      This lineup is the equivalent of a pitcher hitting 5th. I understand the argument “lineups don’t matter much,” but that’s because nobody ever has a pitcher batting 5th.

      • LDS

        The problem is that too many people look at descriptive statistics and think they are predictive. Last night, the first inning, was a perfect demonstration that lineups matter.

    • J

      .118/.211/.250 against lefties is hitting 5th today. He’s 2 for 31 (.065/.194/.065) against this team in 2021. Maybe he’ll have 3 hits and 5 RBI today, and I’ll be very happy for him and the team, but this is insanity.

  28. Roger Garrett

    I agree with Jim the Reds are just better offensively with Ty Steve in the middle of the lineup.Its just not going to happen cause he isn’t playing first nor is he catching the majority of the games.That is off limits and maybe even further off limits then Suarez not playing.

  29. Chris Holbert

    Bell has been pretty consistent with TS catching against lefties, I wonder if he is dinged up or something?

    • Roger Garrett

      Probably so and he is not playing for sure regardless of his stats against a lefty.

      • old-school

        Or….. Tucker is Miley’s personal catcher. By my count, Miley has 14 starts and Tucker has caught 13 of them.

  30. Roger Garrett

    Move Miley up in the order.He is at 208 and only punches out 25% of the time.Just saying.

  31. Mark A Verticchio

    We were discussing last night that at times against Bell should play Stephenson at first and catch Barnhart, tonight would have been a good game for that with Miley pitching. Votto has really been struggling against lefties, but that is simply not the way Bell operates.

  32. Beaufort Red

    When or if Moustakis comes back where does Geno go. Please don’t say SS. Everyone says we need a SS, that may be true, but the only thing Geno has over Farmer is HRs. Error machine and can’t make contact. I don’t care how many “great ” plays you make you have to make the routine. Granted our bullpen is lacking but making errors only increases the probability of failure. Hopefully Winker wakes up soon. On another note watched the Yankees-Mets the other day and Cub-Cardinals today. So refreshing to not hear from their play by play guys about sabremetics, spin rate, exit velocity, home to first times etc etc. I think it wears on Barry, Chris and Cowboy as well.

  33. JA

    I just realized Padres came back 8-0 to win the game 8-9 yesterday, including a grand slam from a local reliever pitcher, Camarena, that was just playing in El Paso Tx two days before (hr pulled from Scherzer in a 0-2 count).
    I think Reds need to play harder to brewers to reach play off. SD is playing really well and the only thing that can stop them is that they are playing Dodgers and Giants.
    St Louis vs Cubs series will practically make fall one of them, but reinforce the winner for NL central run.

  34. Roger Garrett

    Lets be fair to Bell.He knows more about the team then we do.He knows who is dinged up,who is scheduled to be off,who is going to play each and every game prior to the day the game actually takes place.Its scripted ahead of time and thats just the way it is.Throw in the fact that certain players play almost every game regardless of how they perform along with having guys that are platoon players then you can and do end up with lineups like tonight.Most of us believe that Lopez and TySteve would give us a better chance then Joey and Eugenio because the numbers say so but these guys play every day regardless so that does not factor in.These guys are also rookies and that plays in to it as well.Baseball people frown on the so called unwritten rules in today’s game.Hitting a guy after you guy has been hit or sliding hard in to second or celebrating on the field is always talked about and opinions vary and comments both for and against go on for ever.One thing that never has or ever will change and is never even discussed is that the guys that make the money play regardless.Thats why fans complain so much.Bell wants to win just as much as we do but he has been told who he must win with and how he is to use each player.Bell knows the numbers on Joey against lefties and the world knows how far Eugenio has fell from 2019 but he has been told they will play and they will until they don’t.This is on the front office just as fixing the pen and getting or brining up a short stop.In all honesty its amazing we aren’t 15 games out and we would be out West.Last night’s game really told me something.When as fans we just hope we can put the ball in play like I do when Eugenio comes up its time to just set back and enjoy the good games and try to find something positive in the bad games.