The Cincinnati Reds will look to beat the Chicago Cubs one more time at Wrigley Field as the two teams close out their 4-game series this afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 2:20pm ET.

Starting Lineups

Cincinnati Reds

Chicago Cubs

Jonathan India – 2B Rafael Ortega – CF
Jesse Winker – LF Willson Contreras – C
Kyle Farmer – SS Patrick Wisdom – 1B
Joey Votto – 1B Javier Báez – SS
Tyler Naquin – RF Ian Happ – LF
Eugenio Suárez – 3B Matt Duffy – 3B
Tucker Barnhart – C Jason Heyward – RF
Shogo Akiyama – CF David Bote – 2B
Luis Castillo – SP Alec Mills – SP

Starting Pitchers

Luis Castillo

Over the last two months you could argue that Luis Castillo is the best pitcher in baseball. Since the start of June he’s posted a 1.71 ERA in 10 starts and held opponents to a .512 OPS in 63.1 innings pitched. He’s faced the Cubs twice this season – both times in May, allowing five earned runs in 10.1 innings.

Castillo’s been a bit better against right-handed hitters this season than left-handed hitters. Righties have a .249/.305/.376 line against him, while lefties are hitting .251/.360/.361 against him. He’s also been better at home than on the road, with a 4.50 ERA away from Great American Ball Park this season (3.94 at home).

Pitch usage from 2021

4-Seam 2-Seam Slider Change
Velo 96.9 97.1 85.9 87.9
Usage 29% 23% 19% 30%

Alec Mills

Mills has worked in both the rotation and bullpen this year. He’s made eight starts and had 12 relief appearances, throwing 57.1 total innings with a 4.55 ERA, 20 walks, and 47 strikeouts. On July 2nd he made a start against the Reds and struck out nine batters while allowing two runs on two hits in 5.2 innings. He’s made seven starts in a row dating back to mid-June and has a 3.48 ERA in that stretch and has allowed just two home runs in 33.2 innings.

Left-handed hitters have a .265/.363/.418 line against him with 10 walk and 20 strikeouts this season. Right-handed batters have a .276/.328/.402 line against him with 10 walks and 27 strikeouts on the year. He’s shows big home and road splits – pitching much better at Wrigley. His ERA at home is 3.00 (5.93 on the road) and he’s holding batters to a .250/.291/.394 line in Chicago compared to a .289/.386/.421 line on the road.

Pitch usage from 2021

4-Seam 2-Seam Change Slider Curve
Velo 89.1 89.4 79.4 77.1 66.0
Usage 14% 47% 14% 13% 12%

When and Where

  • Game time: 2:20pm ET
  • Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago
  • Watch: Bally Sports Ohio,,
  • Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
  • Forecast: ­79°, partly cloudy, 2% chance of rain

News and Notes

Another Trade!

The Cincinnati Reds front office can not be stopped! Ok, so that’s probably not true. And the trade that they made today feels mostly inconsequential, but they did trade Ashton Goudeau to the Colorado Rockies this morning for cash considerations.

Ryan Hendrix optioned to Triple-A, sort of

To make room on the 26-man roster for Mychal Givens the Reds optioned Ryan Hendrix to Triple-A, but he was also added to the taxi squad for the road trips so he will not be joining up with the Bats just yet.

Joey Votto to the moon

Unless you’ve been on the moon for the last week or month, you’ve noticed that Joey Votto has been absolutely on fire. He’s homered in five straight games and he’s hit two home runs in each of the last two games. Since coming off of the injured list on June 8th he’s hit .310/.416/.632 with 14 home runs in 44 games played. Over his last nine games he is hitting .469/.561/1.281 – good for an OPS of 1.842

NL Central Standings

Playoff odds via Fangraphs

Team W L GB Playoff %
Brewers 60 42 0 93.5%
Reds 53 49 7.0 14.1%
Cardinals 51 51 9.0 3.0%
Cubs 50 53 10.5 1.2%
Pirates 38 63 21.5 0.0%

162 Responses

  1. todeen

    I was worried that the Reds might become sellers. But with the addition of Givens and Cessa, I’m very excited. I’m unsure they will trade for a shortstop this late in the season, so maybe they are going to rely on Barrero, Greene, and Lodolo, and the return of injured starters. But with two months of the season left, it’s providing inspiration. Joey still bangs!

  2. Rex

    I know what I have said in the past but I now think it maybe the time to talk about a contract excision for Joey Votto, he is pretty fit and I see no reason why he can’t play into his 50’s

    • todeen

      I love Votto, and want him to complete his career in Cincinnati. But at this age, it should be the same as Nelson Cruz is getting – 1 year contracts until he retires.

    • LDS

      Haha, Votto has a couple of years already. Isn’t hitting lefties. There’s better places to spend those dollars.

  3. ClevelandRedsFan

    No Bryant and no Rizzo in the lineup today…or no Bryant and no Rizzo in the stadium today? Good news either way for the Reds.

    • Rex

      I hope they are packing their bags bound for the American league

    • Dennis Westrick

      Interesting! Good for the Reds! Let’s take advantage of their absences!

    • Bet on Red

      According to Ross. This was a “planned day off” and they have not been traded yet

    • MCT

      Word is that Rizzo is headed to the Bronx.

  4. Rednat

    i like farmer in the 3 hole.

    until Moustakis and Castellanos get back. i would like to see Joey surrounded by Stephenson and Farmer as much as possible in the order

  5. Ghostrunner_onthird

    Need to jump on ’em early and simply crush it.

  6. Jim t

    Need to get out of wrigley winning 3 of 4 and take 2 of 3 from the Mets

  7. Bet on Red

    The Joey Votto show this afternoon. Bullpen gets another improvement. Reds set to win another series. Baez finally shows his face in the lineup. Enough time has passed to figure there might not be fireworks today.

  8. Beaufort red

    Please everyone stop this nonsense of trading for a shortstop. Batting .439 since the All Star break and excellent defense. Farmer has performed better than probably 75 % of the league’s shortstops.

    • Indy Red Man

      Well he did have a .592 ops coming into July. Somebody said there were only 5 worse at the time or something. He’s probably league average by now. Barrero is almost ready for another shot so I agree SS isn’t a big need.

    • doofus

      Kyle Farmer is a nice utility player. For the last 12 games since the AS game he has batted .444, albeit against mediocre pitching. I believe that Woodruff was the only tough pitcher that he hit (double) during this time.

      Over the 85 games prior to that he hit .220.

      Defensively, he does not embarrass himself.

      Reds should find a real SS for the next two months if they expect to make the playoffs and win some playoff games.

      • JayTheRed

        Actually farmer is batting over .400 for the entire month of July. I think he can finish the season with us especially if he keeps up at that rate.

        Reds should wait til this winter when there is a buffet of good SS that are going to be free agents.

  9. LGR

    Just trade for Bryant real quick like and stick him in the lineup today. 🙂

  10. Indy Red Man

    Shogo over AA again? Naquin needs a day off so play Shogo over him if you want. Oh well Joey will carry the boys again and it won’t matter.

  11. Mark Moore

    A little better setup and protection for JV today. Geno still should be at the bottom, but what do I know?

    Score early, score often. Bunch of meetings have moved so the game is on one of the screens with the sound on for the most part.

  12. RedsMonk65

    VOTTO — MATIC AGAIN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • LDS

      That’s the new Reds record I think. Ross knows the LH’er situation based on his comments. The Reds need to get far enough ahead that it won’t matter.

  13. Mark Moore

    Wait … WHAT??? This defies all logic.

  14. Melvin

    Are you kidding me? Unbelievable!!! Well no. It’s Joey Votto.

  15. JB

    In 87 Don Martingly hit homeruns in 8 consecutive days. It was must see TV here in MY and he was one of my favorite players. Can Joey get there?

  16. Arthur

    Why would anyone pitch to that man right now?? Especially with 2 outs and a base open?? He’s absolutely on fire.

    • Melvin

      Today he didn’t have Suarez right behind him. The rest of the game probably IBB unless bases empty. One run game late still maybe IBB with bases empty.

    • Amarillo

      I was going to say I didn’t know there were a lot of baseball fans in Malaysia.

  17. LGR

    Joey Votto? More like Joey Homer A’Lotto am I right? I’ll see myself out.

  18. Dennis Westrick

    Good start for the offense! A crooked number and Votto beig Votto! Let’s go LC! Be Tne Man!

  19. dhmorgan

    I’m a little late to the party, so I guess I’ll have to wait for a replay, but holy moly.

  20. Bet on Red

    just realized that tomorrow Nick C is eligible to come off of the IL. Is there any update on his condition?

  21. RojoB

    Rally Killer does his thing from the 6 spot too

    • Dennis Westrick

      Don’t call him Sir Strands-A-Lot for nothing!

  22. LGR

    Don’t see 100 to often from Castillo. Love that it’s against Baez.

  23. Bet on Red

    Expected Baez to wear one there… instead he Ks and the reds are off the field

  24. JB

    I got news for Baez, I dont think anybody will be dumb enough to give him the 200 million he is looking for.

  25. Indy Red Man

    Watching Cubs broadcast. Castillo lowest era in mlb since June 1 (minimum 8 starts)

    Castillo 1.71
    Buehler 1.77
    Burnes 1.99

    Whatever Luis is doing to get ready for April though? Go work out in Russia like Rocky or something. You’re a professional and a star! The Reds can’t lose 10 of 11 starts while you figure it out.

    • Indy Red Man

      Glad I got -125 last night for this one. I pounded it!!

    • Dennis Westrick

      Too cold in Russia! LC needs to be wearing a heated uniform in April and May until the ambient temperature is 80+

      • Indy Red Man

        My thinking is if he trained in sub freezing then Cincy seems like a sauna in April

  26. Melvin

    I think that’s about as far as I’ve seen poor Aki hit one this year. Just doesn’t have any power at all unfortunately.

    • JB

      He hit one that hit the base of the wall in right at GABP. Must of been feeling really good that day.

  27. Dennis Westrick

    How sad is that? LC with a hit, albeit a weak infield hit, and Geno with, well?
    Right now I would trade Suarez for a Bag of Magic Beans! Fee-Fi-Fo-Fum!

  28. JB

    I think the Cubs are in for some lean years when they lose their core players. I will enjoy it . Stupid Cubs

    • Indy Red Man

      Yeah they are. Their announcers are talking about how they have no power arms with their rotation. Castillo hit 100 and they compared it to their guys where everyone is 88-90

  29. LGR

    Sal Romano pitching for the Yankees right now. Thanks for Cessa guys.

  30. realist

    The modern-era record for lowest batting average for a player that qualified for the batting title is held by Chris Davis, who hit .168 in 2018. Suarez is in the running for all time worst! Let’s go Eugenio cause we know Bell will give you every change to get it done.

  31. Dennis Westrick

    Need to score some more runs for LC! Can’t expect him to do it all!

  32. DaveCT

    Just tuned in. That Votto guy — can’t take your eyes off of him for one second.

    • Bubba Woo

      Just an unbelievably bad decision to not PH for Castillo in the 5th. Bases loaded with one out. A single gets you a 3 run lead. Castillo was already at 90 pitches. Of course he hit into a DP. That was the most likely scenario.

  33. Dennis Westrick

    LC averaging 17 pitches per inning thru the 4th! May last thru the 6th, hopefully the 7th!

  34. DaveCT

    Ok, the Twins are listening more and more on Berrios. Are we in? I say yes.

  35. Indy Red Man

    Glad they didn’t walk Joey in the 1st. That was very dumb! We don’t hit this guy very well. I think he shut us down in gabp too.


      His off speed is taking its toll on the Reds today. Got to get more, can’t expect Joey and Luis C. to do it alone.

  36. JB

    Now that the Reds have a new Bullpen maybe 2 runs is enough. There should not be any reason whatsoever of Doolittle coming in the game today. None ,zero,zip. Plenty of other arms to go to first.

  37. Dennis Westrick

    LC is battling! Plus he has 2 infield hits! Wake up offense! That means you Geno!

    • JB

      Rip Van Geno has been sleeping for awhile


      Dennis, he walk a guy before the homer, I know how you hate walks that come around and score. Plenty of game left so lets go get this!

  38. Dennis Westrick

    Well, so much for a 1-run lead! Why is it that every HR by the opposition seems to come just after a walk? Need to come back and win this game against the Stupid Cubs! Can’t expect the Pie Rats to put up a fight against the Brewers tonight!

  39. Indy Red Man

    Nobody is perfect, but they only have a few guys that can hurt you. Especially when he’s throwing 98-100. Uggghhhhh. I think the first HR was offspeed too. Hate to get beat on secondary pitches

    • JB

      Looked like that pitch tailed back right across the middle of the plate. Bad location.

  40. Roger Garrett

    Just tuned in to see Cy Mills on the mound and see their catcher hit one 9 miles on a slider.Guy is at 99 and 100 and gets beat on a slider.Who is calling the pitches?Goodness no Rizzo or Bryant and we are behind.Good grief.

  41. realist

    Great job Suarez, he is sabotage in the lineup. Seriously why is he playing, anyone???

    • JB

      It’s like a win win situation because the albatross didnt ground into a double play


    Yes, I always complain about getting productive outs, Geno! Do it Tucker!

  43. JB

    Bases loaded no outs. Here we are again.

  44. realist

    Productive out? Hitting into a force out at home?


      No, productive out is moving runners up. Like what Naquin did. If Geno would have hit a SF and Farmer scored that would have been a productive out.

  45. LGR

    Man. Castillo should have just struck out, walked or gotten hit. That’s the one thing he couldn’t let happen..

    • wkuchad

      yep, maybe good timing for a suicide squeeze attempt

  46. wkuchad

    Part of me wanted a pitch hitter for Castillo there. Most of me said no way. Tough call though.


      Thinking Schrock there but time will tell.

    • JB

      I would have went pinch hitter. They had a chance to blow it open and Castillo is on fumes at 90 plus pitches.

  47. Roger Garrett

    No way I let Luis bat right there.Bell is just dumb.Chance to bust it open vs at best 1 more inning from Castillo.Good grief are you kidding me.I thought Ross was on vacation for leaving Mills in and Bell says no let me show you I can do better.

  48. Mark A Verticchio

    He should have pinched hit Castillo doesn’t have his best stuff and all your going to get is maybe one more inning.

  49. Mark Moore

    Went into the house for a bit. Saw the Wisdom dinger and then our 2-run comeback. LC looks to be struggling a bit here in his half of the 6th. Let’s not let this one get away from us.

    Watching the trade wire in anticipation of seeing Bryant’s and Rizzo’s names.

  50. Mark Moore

    Javy Thug gets gunned down!!! Love that little twist.

  51. Mark Moore

    Looking like Scherzer is on the move either up I-95 to Boston or out to the Friars.

    • BZ

      It sounds like a done deal to the Padres pending Max waiving his no-trade which he has said he’d do to move out west.

      • RedsMonk65

        Hold the phone, Dodgers say…..

  52. BZ

    Brach should be the last resort out of the bullpen now. I’m not sure why he is warming up in a one run game.

    • JB

      2nd to last. Doolittle gets my vote for last.

  53. burtgummer01

    Padres close to getting Scherzer

      • RedsMonk65

        Dodgers closing in instead — and with Trea Turner!

        Must be nice to be rich…..

  54. Jim t

    Pen has to get 9 outs in a 1 run game. Who likes our chances?

    • Mark Moore

      I like them a little better right now.


    That’s it for Luis C. Thank goodness for that DP. Bell has got to manage and trust the Bullpen, so do I…

  56. Bet on Red

    SD looking to win the Max Scherzer sweepstakes

    • Indy Red Man

      Jeez. That would about finish off our playoff chances imo. I’m surprised SF just sits and does nothing


        Guess Giants farm system isn’t as good as SD, nothing to send back, maybe Joey Bart

      • JB

        I think the Reds will catch Milwaukee Indy. Make up 1 game a week. Especially if they can sweep the Brewers and their starting pitching will be setting season high innings pitched by alot.

      • Indy Red Man

        I don’t see it. They’re hitting well and they got Escobar too. They have 7 more with the Pirates before we play them. We might play well and still be 8-9 out when we go in there 3 weeks from now.

    • RedsMonk65

      Looks like the Dodgers moving in on Max with even bigger stakes….

  57. Indy Red Man

    I agree that you pinch-hit for Luis there. Tiring starter on a hot day and they had a chance to put up 1-4 more runs? Their pen is suddenly alot deeper. Tony might be able to go 2 innings.

    Thats a classic Dusty move except he would let Harang hit with men on and 95 pitches and he’d give up 2 runs with 1 out and get pulled next inning anyway

  58. Bet on Red

    Farmer picks up LCs DP last inning

  59. dhmorgan

    Farmer again!
    Don’t touch that man unless you are wearing asbestos gloves.

  60. Mark A Verticchio

    What can you say about Kyle Farmer, I would love to see the Reds get a shortstop and move Farmer to 3rd. Something has to be done about that position, and with all the teams they are chasing making major moves the Reds need to make a splash just to give the team hope.

    • JB

      I’m curious to see if the Reds are waiting until the trade deadline ends. If they dont get anybody they will then bring up Barrero.

    • wkuchad

      that trade with the Dodgers maybe not so terrible after all lol

  61. Redgoggles

    What could we get by trading Barrero, lol. Happy for Farmer, by all accounts a great guy to have on the team.

    • LGR

      Or you know.. just move Farmer to 3rd and let Barrero play as well.


    Joey with a productive out! Now get him in AA

  63. LGR

    Holy crap I forgot what a sac fly looked like.

    • RedsMonk65

      Dodgers with the sneaky steal……?

      • JayTheRed

        As of Midnight central time nobody has him quite yet. I would be more ok with the Dodgers getting him.

  64. Roger Garrett

    Yeah got 3 in before Eugenio comes up and nobody is on base.Best scenario one could ask for and I still want Eugenio to turn it around but I am a realist first.

    • JB

      I would like him to turn it around as well but he is not helping the team at this time. There comes a time it had to be about the team and winning. Bell has to make that decision now. Not next week. Today.

  65. Indy Red Man

    Relentless! This will be the best Reds lineup in decades imo. Geno won’t last forever. They’ll have other alternatives.

    Farmer? IDK? This is one of the best months I’ve ever seen from a guy thats not a star. Jeff Keppinger or Jerry Hairston Jr? AA for power, but as far as hitting .400+ and just screamers in every direction

  66. Hanawi

    Credit to this team for continuing to fight. Thought the Castellanos injury would have ended the season, but Farmer and Votto have picked it up along with consistent production from Winker and India.

    • Jim t

      Hanawi, that is what I love about this team. They are the grittiest reds team I have seen in some time. Lack of bullpen, injuries to key components all this but it seems they never quit. While many question our manager daily he gets the most out of his team. They may not make the playoffs and I have to admit I never thought they would at the beginning of the season but they are fun to watch and they battle. You don’t get this kind of effort from everyone on this roster unless you are respected by your players. While you can question his decisions his leadership is first rate.

      • Indy Red Man

        Thats why Bell isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. I don’t think his decisions make sense all the time, but they’re ready to play.

        Monday was heartbreaking and they came right back. Backbreaking loss in KC, but they came back and won the series. They’re killing the NL Central overall too

  67. Indy Red Man

    Jeff Keppinger

    August 2007

    .393, 7 doubles, triple, 3 hrs, 1.056 ops

    Haven’t looked, but Farmer has him beat! Loved watching Kepp hit though!

    • wkuchad

      And the good news is we have Farmer for three more years. A super sub that can fill in at catcher and more than hold his own at all other infield positions, with a .724 OPS. Yes please!!

      • JayTheRed

        You know part of the reason I think he is having so much success is because they are letting him play more often. I think if he were still a bench guy it would be a totally different story for him.

    • JB

      So didnt I. He played well for the Reds.

      • Indy Red Man

        Jerry Hairston Jr. May 2008

        .343, 7 doubles, 3B, HR, 9 steals

        He had a good run too. I don’t know why we let him go so fast?


        Speaking of old players that had a good run, wasn’t Chris Stynes and Jon Nunnally a couple of those that got hot a short time

  68. JB

    Let’s say the Giants win the division. That will make it Dodgers against Padres in one game playoff. Will it be Buehler vs Scherzer in that game? That will be a game to watch.

  69. Indy Red Man

    Suddenly Bell is pretty smart))) Givens is toughand Cessa isn’t chopped liver either.
    Givens could close though….better then Sims or Lorenzen. 97 mph with a weird delivery will play!

  70. wkuchad

    2 balls, 9 strikes, inning over – WELCOME TO THE REDS!!

  71. RedsMonk65

    Nice debut by Givens. Our new additions have looked good thus far.

  72. LGR

    Alright Givens chill. Save some K’s for the rest of us.

  73. dhmorgan

    The three new relief pitchers: 3 innings pitched, 0 runs.
    That won’t last, but it’s a good start.

  74. VaRedsFan

    Givens…immaculate inning +2….impressive


    Suarez only starter without a hit today, so hopefully he will get a couple in the next game.


        Yeah, there is a law on the books somewhere

  76. RedsMonk65

    7-4. Can never relax with this BP …


      Rizzo and Bryant hasn’t been traded yet, so they can still pitch hit.

  77. RedsMonk65

    Nice series against the Stupid Cubs.

    Take that, Baez!

    On to New York…


    I have really enjoy it today, Posting and the replying, Thanks to everyone on here. And Thanks to Doug Gray and the Staff for this great site! Its fun to win..

    • Indy Red Man

      Yes it is!!! See you tomorrow sir! We need you!!


        Thanks Indy! I’ll be here! Rooting for the W , Go Reds!

  79. Indy Red Man

    Farmer in July:

    .394, 6 doubles, 3B, 4 hrs

    Dude is on fire!!!

  80. doofus

    I am reading almost everyone doing cartwheels over the Reds beating up on a depleted Cubs squad today. The Reds are far from being a really competitive team.

    • RojoB

      It’s fun when out team wins

      “Lighten up, Francis!”