|Milwaukee Brewers (55-39)||7||15||2|
|Cincinnati Reds (48-44)||4||5||1|
|W: Gustave (1-0) L: Doolittle (3-1)|
|FanGraphs Win Probability | Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread|
The Reds got the scoring started thanks to some shaky defense from the Brewers in the second inning. Kyle Farmer made them pay even more with a 2-out, RBI double with a base open and the pitchers spot up next. Luis Castillo continued his 2021 resurgence. Castillo pitched six shutout innings with 8 strikeouts. Castillo’s now has a 1.76 ERA over his last 9 starts.
Things went downhill quickly in the 7th when Amir Garrett came in. He made a mistake pitch to pinch-hitter Tyrone Taylor, who hit a sharp single. Kolten Wong hit a single with an expected batting average of .080 to move the runners to first and third. Christian Yelich hit a ball 2 feet in front of the plate to cut the Reds lead to 2-1. Garrett left to some boos from the Cincinnati crowd. Brad Brach came in and allowed a single and sac fly, and the Reds were trailing 3-2 out of nowhere.
The rain came down and the game was delayed for 45 minutes during the bottom of the 7th inning. The Reds as they’ve done all year, never quit. Jonathan India hit a game tying home run in the 8th.
The game went into extra innings. Both teams scored a run in the 10th inning. The Brewers blew it open in the 11th inning when they scored three runs. The Reds brought the winning run to the plate, but it was Wade Miley with two outs because the Reds ran out of players with Nick Castellanos unavailable. Miley grounded out to end the game.
The Reds have dropped both of the first two games of the series. They are now 6.0 games back in the NL Central. Tomorrow is obviously a massive game for the Reds.
Biggest Play of the Game
According to Fangraphs WPA statistic (winning percentage added), the biggest play of the game was Jonathan India’s solo home run to lead off the 8th inning, tying the game at 3. That play increased the Reds probability of winning by 29.7% (from 25.8% to 60.9%).
Luis Castillo just continues to pitch like……Luis Castillo. It was silly to doubt that he would not find a way to turn this around earlier in the year. Castillo’s final line: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K. He allowed a total of 5 hard hit balls on the night, and the Brewers expected batting average against him was just .218. His full season ERA is now all the way down to 4.39.
Kyle Farmer drove in a big second run with a double in the second inning. He later ripped a ball off Josh Hader that was inches away from being a walk-off winner with Aquino on first, but Luis Urias made the play of the night converting it into a double play.
Michael Lorenzen pitched a scoreless 8th inning in his 2021 debut. He allowed a hit and a walk, but he struck out 2. He even stayed in the game to play RF and then later CF. He struck out against Hader, but he did force him to throw five pitches. He did however leave hurt (more below).
Jonathan India hit a game tying home run in the 8th. It was a massive home run after the bullpen letdown. He also made a great diving catch in the 10th.
It was a tough night for Amir Garrett. He made a really bad mistake pitch to a 2-2 count to Tyrone Taylor, but he had some brutal luck after that. Garrett has had a really difficult season, but it should be pointed out that he entered play today with a 2.38 ERA/2.11 FIP over his last 18 appearances. Hopefully this was just a tough outing and he can get back on track. The Reds really need him to be a good left-handed option in the bullpen.
Josh Osich and Sean Doolittle could not get the job done in extra innings. The Reds bullpen as a whole allowed 7 runs. They had a lot of things go against them tonight with some very weak contact and low-percentage hits, but it is still painful to watch for a fanbase that has zero patience for the pen.
The Reds offense only had five hits in 11 innings. They also only had a total of 7 hard hit balls on the night, and 4 of those came off the Brewers last resort pitcher, Jandel Gustave. The Reds did have 7 walks on the night. 4 of those walks were against Brandon Woodruff, which helped get him out of the game in the 6th inning.
Luis Urias made two game-changing defensive plays for the Brewers (robbing Farmer and Aquino). Urias entered play with -14 outs above average, tied with Eugenio Suarez for the worst of any player in baseball.
Michael Loreznen got hurt while scoring the game tying run in the 10th inning, tagging from third base. He had to leave the game with what looked like a possible hamstring injury. I know there was a lot of complaints tonight about why would they use Lorenzen outside of pitching with the thin bullpen just coming back. This was a fluke injury. I am pretty sure that Lorenzen has never been hurt in his career on the offensive side of the ball. He has spent months conditioning to get ready. I just think it’s one of those though things that happens. It has just been a brutal season for Lorenzen, who was supposed to finally get a chance in the rotation at the start of this season. You have to feel for him.
David Bell on Michael Lorenzen:
— Jeremy Rauch (@FOX19Jeremy) July 18, 2021
Not so random thoughts……………
I suppose that paying customers have the right to boo their teams players and/or managers if they want to. It did not sit well with me when the fans booed Garrett (maybe some directed at Bell) when he left the game. I get that not everyone will share in that feeling, but it did not sit well with me. I wish that we would try to be more encouraging to our players after a tough outing than that. I don’t see what good will come of it (no, it’s not going to change Bob’s mind about spending money or not).
Brewers reliever Brad Boxberger left the game with an apparent injury after he allowed a leadoff home run to Jonathan India. The injury replacement allowed Craig Counsell a loophole around the 3-batter minimum, and he got to bring in LHP, Brent Suter vs Jesse Winker (who has massive splits negatively against LHP). I’m not saying Boxberger wasn’t hurt, but this seems like a major flaw in the rule. Boxberger should at least be forced to go on the IL since this move clearly gave the Brewers an advantage tonight. Devin Williams also did go on the IL earlier today, so that strong Brewers bullpen might not be so strong for a while.
I didn’t like David Bell going to Alejo Lopez in the 8th inning with two runners on base and 1 out against Brent Suter instead of Aristides Aquino. The move was made to be able to set up a potential 9th inning and keep your fielders in order, but Bell had a chance to essentially win the game there. It’s a small sample, but Aristides Aquino entered the day day leading the Reds in OPS (.984) and xwOBA (.393). I would have liked to see him get a chance there.
The Reds need a win tomorrow. That would put them at 4-3 in the 7 games against the Brewers. It is certainly not how you would have expected to get to that point, but overall, I don’t think you could be too upset with that. It is really hard to win more games than that against a quality opponent. Win tomorrow, get to 5.0 back with a lot of season left and a favorable schedule in September. Go Reds.
Brewers at Reds
Sunday, 1:10 PM
TV: Bally Sports Ohio
Sonny Gray (3.19 ERA) vs Corbin Burnes (2.36 ERA)