A five-run first inning outburst was more than enough for the Miami Marlins in their 6-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds at LoanDepot Park in Miami.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (71-60) 1 8 1
Miami Marlins (54-76)
6 12 0
W: Alcantara (8-12) L: Gutierrez (9-5)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Before the 6:10 ET start, it was clear that the Reds would need to keep things close against the Marlins, because the home team starting pitcher was one of the best young righties in the game, Sandy Alcantara. That objective was pretty much squashed in the bottom of the first inning when the home team scored five runs to lead by that amount after the first frame.

Pending the result of the Milwaukee Brewers game at Minnesota, Cincinnati fell to eight games out of first place. That game was tied in the sixth inning when this post was set live.

The Reds’ lead over San Diego for the second National League Wild Card berth shrunk to 1 1/2 games, pending the outcome of the Padres’ game at Anaheim, which was just starting at the time this post went live.

The Offense

Tyler Naquin extended his hitting streak to 17 games with an RBI double in the third inning. Prior to the game, his August stat line was one to behold: .419/.488/.797/1.285.

Reds bats were largely overmatched by Alcantara’s lights-out stuff. For the second consecutive start, Alcantara was dominant against Cincinnati, striking out 12 batters tonight after 11 last weekend. The Reds left the bases loaded in the third and two men on in the fourth, and that was the extent of their opportunities against Alcantara.

There are outstanding pitchers who can beat anyone, and Alcantara falls into that category. Even back in the Big Red Machine days when the Reds pounded bad teams with regularity, they were more often than not shut down when they faced Randy Jones of the Padres. Truth be told, this game was essentially over after the first inning.

If you want to dream a bit, Alcantara has a similar build to Hunter Greene, as well as the blazing fastball. Greene is going to have to develop secondary pitches he can throw consistently for strikes to match Alcantara’s effectiveness, but it’s fun to think about.

Tucker Barnhart, Nick Castellanos and Max Schrock had two hits apiece. Note to anyone who will listen: As long as Jesse Winker is unavailable, let’s see Schrock in left field against righties. The guy can absolutely hit.

The Pitching

Vladimir Gutierrez just didn’t have it tonight. Perhaps he was too pumped up for pitching in front of his friends and family for the first time in the majors. In the post-game interview, he said maybe the fact that Miami has a substantial Cuban population went a little to his head.

He wasn’t helped by a couple of misplays by third baseman Mike Moustakas, who later left the game with right hip tightness. But the first eight Marlins reached, with the only out coming on Jesus Aguilera trying to advance from first to third on a run-scoring single by Jorge Alfaro. Gutierrez recovered to pitch scoreless ball in the second and third innings, but the damage had been done.

Tony Santillan pitched a scoreless fourth and fifth, working out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the latter inning. Amir Garrett continued to struggle, allowing two doubles and a run in the sixth. Luis Cessa pitched a one-two-three seventh, and Justin Wilson duplicated that feat in the eighth.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds at Miami Marlins

Sunday, August 29, 1:10 p.m. ET

Tyler Mahle (10-4, 3.69 ERA) vs. Jesus Luzardo (4-7, 7.91 ERA)

57 Responses

  1. Randy Peterson

    I agree with playing Schrock in LF, but why bat him 8th? This guy is a hitter. Bat him 5th or 6th.

  2. Bet on Red

    Twins came through and Rockies are still tied… Doesn’t hurt as much, we should take tomorrow

    • CI3J

      I’m not sure why you care about either of those results? The Reds aren’t catching the Brewers or the Dodgers.

      Instead, we should be focusing on the Cards (currently up 13-0 in the 8th) and the Padres (currently down 2-3 in the 4th). Pretty much no other teams matter at this point, although the Phillies could potentially cause some problems if they keep winning.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        I’m not giving up on the division. I know it’s not likely, but there’s no reason to give up until it’s truly over.

      • CI3J

        @Tom, sure, there’s always a chance of something amazing happening.

        But the reality is, the Brewer’s magic number currently sits at 24. That’s 24 Brewer wins/Reds losses that are left before the division “race” is over.

        I don’t know about you, but I can see that number dwindling to zero no later than the day the Reds finish their series with the Dodgers on September 20th.

        If the division is still in play after that date, I for one will be shocked.

      • Alan Horn

        Tom, going back to something you mentioned earlier about addressing the leads the runners are getting and thus stealing a lot of bases on us. I agree it is a problem which rests primarily with our pitchers. Second, as I stated earlier, neither of our catchers have a great arm. Barnhart in particular needs some work on his throwing mechanics. You can see it on tv. His ball tails off to the right when he throws. That cuts down on the speed in which the ball gets to 2nd base. He is throwing 3/4 which causes that to happen. A catcher should have a short compact throw with a overhand backward spin on the ball which prevents it from tailing or dying. The backward spin helps the ball carry further and more quickly. The same goes for a batted ball. If you hit down on the ball slightly it will give it a backward spin which helps it carry further. Johnny Bench(the greatest catcher I ever saw) was a perfect example of proper catcher throwing mechanics.

      • Beaufort Red

        I guess Bet on Red can scoreboard watch whoever he wants. Some haven’t given up all hope. I think everyone here knows who tho the teams of concern are. Thx Bet on Red.

      • Alan Horn

        Yogi Berra said “It ain’t over til the fat lady sings”.

      • Joe P.

        Feels like that fat lady is sitting on the Reds chest.

      • Alan Horn

        They are wheezing and she is ready to sing, but she ain’t let loose yet.

    • CI3J

      To further emphasize how futile chasing the Brewers is at this point, let’s assume the Brewers went .500 over their final 32 games (16-16). They would finish with a 94-68 record.

      For the Reds to just MATCH that, they could only lose 8 games the rest of the way. And this is a best case scenario which has the Brewers playing significantly worse than they have all season. If the Brewers go, say, 20-12 over the remaining stretch (which is much more likely), then the Reds could only lose 4 games from now to the end of September.

      Now consider that the Dodgers have an even better record than the Brewers.

      I know it ain’t over until it’s over, but realistically speaking, the Reds have no chance to catch either team.

      • Rcsodak

        I think everybody has the ability to do math. But thanks for the fresh of breath air, nonetheless.

    • CI3J

      One final thought: It’s actually really good news for the Reds that the Brewers and Cards still have 10 games to play against each other. Hopefully the Brewers stomp them and get them off the Reds’ tail.

      • Beaufort Red

        Why we stomp the Cardinals ourselves and not rely on others. It’s in our hands. We can do it.

      • CI3J

        Of course, the Reds should also stomp the Cards. But it would be helpful if the Brewers and Dodgers could get in on the act too and truly bury them.

        I’ll be rooting for the Brewers to win every game against the Cards.

    • beelicker

      Angels just opened a big ol ‘ can on Sad Diego and lead 1o-2 in the 6th. This is one of their bullpen games they’ve had to feature due to a lack of healthy starting pitchers, which further puts an innings strain on the strength of their staff in that type of game plus lessening their capabilities in support of their remaining or returning healthy starters

      • CI3J

        I saw that. Now these are the kind of results that we should care about. Good news for the Reds.

      • beelicker

        Looks like every pitcher they put in except for the last 2 mop up guys had a hand in giving up a run. Weathers the leadoff guy gave up 3 in 3 innings. Somehow the 7th inning guy with an 8 ERA gave up 2 hits and a BB and didn’t get scored on. All but one of the RPs had an ERA under 3. They’re set to visit AZ now for 3 now after AZ just swept them last week. Then Houston visits for 3, 2 more with LAA, 3 with LAD and 4 with SF

        I don’t see them hanging around too long

      • CI3J

        Me neither. Their remaining schedule is brutally difficult.

  3. Bet on Red

    Cj whatever….i am glad the reds didn’t give up as quickly as you did.

    • CI3J

      I didn’t give up. I’m just saying, mathematically, it’s extremely unlikely, so realistically, there’s no point in caring what the Dodgers or Brewers do when teams like the Padres and Cardinals are much more likely to affect the Reds.

      For the record, I do think the Reds are going to close the gap some with the Brewers, but even with the Reds’ favorable schedule, it’s simply not likely that the Reds are going to be 8 games better than the Brewers from here on out.

      This is just the reality of it. Yes, sometimes improbable runs happen, such as the 2007 Rockies or the 1994 Mariners. But you know why we remember those teams? Because what they did was highly unusual or unexpected. The vast majority of the time, teams don’t come back from being 8 games out with 30 to play. That’s just reality.

      • Jim Walker

        In 1964, the Cardinals were in 3rd place -5 games to 1st place with 10 games to go and won the NL and World Series.

      • oklared

        Well glad I didn’t believe prognosticators in 1990 or I would have missed great series. Play the games always hope for the best, not the likely.

      • CI3J

        @Jim Yes, and as I said in a previous comment, you remember that team because what they did was unusual or out of the ordinary. How many teams before and since have been in a similar situation and still finished the season in 3rd?

        @oklared This has nothing to do with “prognosticators”, and everything to do with simple math. I’m not saying it’s impossible for the Reds to catch the Brewers, I’m simply saying, given what would mathematically have to take place for that to happen, it’s highly unlikely. As I wrote higher up, the Brewer’s magic number is currently 24, meaning some combination of 24 Brewers wins and Reds losses will end the “race”. Realistically, the Brewers are going to clinch the division sometime around mid to late September. The Reds just need to focus on holding off the Pads and Cards in the meantime.

      • Luke J

        What difference does it make if we still care about the division? It’s the same thing either way. The Reds need to win as nuch as possible and those they are chasing need to lose more. It doesn’t matter if we route for Brewers losses or Padres (why not both?), it’s all the same. You just want to pee in people’s cheerios. To what end?

      • Luke J

        We can all do math. We understand probability. Doesn’t mean we can’t still route for the unlikely. What difference does it make to you or the Reds?

      • Hotto4Votto

        CI3J – I totally get what you’re saying and agree from a mathematical perspective that it is unlikely we catch the Brewers (or Dodgers). It’s a perfectly rational and logical take, but it’s also important to remember fan is short for fanatic. Some people just wanna live their best Lloyd Christmas life. And that’s ok too. Sorry so many want to give you grief about it though. It’s just different views.

      • Votto4life

        Thanks for pointing out the obvious. Everyone on this board knows catching this board knows catching the Brewers or the Dodgers is improbable. We are just trying to enjoy the remainder of the season. No disrespect intended.

    • Beaufort Red

      Amen. Amazing how some on here are so much more in tune than the rest of us.

  4. Jim Walker

    Where does a person start on this mess? Moustakas “misplayed” a grounder the first Marlins batter hit right by him because he was unable to bend over and field what looked like a routine ball to his glove side. The second Marlins batter hit a grounder slightly to Moose’s backhand side; and, he also did not get a play on it. Instead of 2 outs and nobody on, the Marlins had 2 on and no outs.

    Jeff Brantley would later opine that to his eye, both balls looked like they should have been played by a healthy fielder positioned as Moose was positioned when they were struck.

    Next to get in on the act was Barnhart who committed catcher’s interference (on a swing) against the 3rd Marlins batter to load the bases with no outs. The batter on the play was Jesus Aguilar, the Marlins batter Barnhart had committed the same interference against at GABP last week.

    A couple of more singles, a Marlins TOOTBLAN, and a three run home run followed to plate 5 runs; and that was effectively the game.

    • oklared

      Dude stands at the back of the box with very flat swing how you see little leaguers coached to get interference by scrupulous coaches. Barnhart should have known better and he reached for the ball. Some from of tootblan applies here for a catcher with his abilities

      • Jim Walker

        Agreed. Brantley got around to saying that from a pitcher’s point of view the CI was the play that broke the camel’s back for Gutierrez. He also noted that there was a lack of mixing velocities by Gutierrez in the 1st and that once he started mixing speeds, he looked good and effective in the 2nd and 3rd. So, remind me again why Barnhart was behind the plate instead of Stephenson.

      • Joe P.

        @ Jim Walker

        Hopefully, Gutierrez learns from his outing. If he is struggles to locate his slider, then just go fastball/change-up. Then later try to work in the slider. Sometimes a pitcher has to “pound his way through” the outing.

      • Alan Horn

        I think it was just one of those days. It happens in baseball. Every starter we have has been lit up on a given day. They all have rebounded.

    • Alan Horn

      Jim, apparently you and some others are getting different announcers on MLB.COM. When the Reds are on the road, I get the other teams announcers. Are you watching on MLB.COM or am I missing something?

      • Beaufort Red

        I replayed the game and Brantley neverrysaid the CI was the “straw that broke the camell’s back. “ As bad as Suarez has been I’m pretty sure he would of at least put a glove on those 2 ground balls. Moose if you can’t field your position take a seat. That being said put Schrock at 3rd, but probably Cabrera and Schrock in left. Bat him 2nd or 5th.

      • Jim Walker

        I am a local cable subscriber (Spectrum) in the Dayton, OH area which gives me access to stream the Reds via the Bally Sports production through their app or the Spectrum site (or app). We still have one cable box in the house, I just prefer streaming because it avoids contesting for the cable box on the big screen w/ my wife who is not a sports person 😉

      • Alan Horn

        @Jim Walker. I bet you are getting the different announcers because you are streaming versus watching on the cable box. I too am with Spectrum in Alabama but I am viewing through the cable box.

      • Alan Horn

        We have 2 cable boxes but I know what you are talking about. I would be contesting with the Hallmark Channel and a few others. What we like to watch is 180 degrees apart. She isn’t into Swamp People.

    • Jim Walker

      @Beaufort, Brantly did not specifically use the idiom “straw that broke the camel’s back”. I was summing and paraphrasing. He did make a statement that as a pitcher, the CI was probably the critical point for Gutierrez (and note “critical point” is NOT) in quotes).

    • Jim Walker

      Bell said several days ago Winker was not yet doing any baseball related rehab activities. He followed on with a comment that Winker was at least a couple of weeks off. Presumably, that was a reference to a possible return date. So, approaching mid September?

      • Alan Horn

        Hasn’t Winker had back problems in previous seasons? If so, it could be concerning going forward and giving him the huge contract he has earned.

      • Jim Walker

        Believe Winker has had prior back issues, yes.

    • Old-school

      Per Bobby nightingale- he’s throwing but not hitting yet

  5. Old-school

    Winker had an intercostal muscle strain- muscle in between the ribs that is needed for rotational power/torque when swinging. He just over-juiced a swing.
    Wouldn’t lump it into “chronic back pain”.

    I got one a few years ago from a really poor 5 iron swing and hit the ball fat. Didn’t think I would finish the round and my score certainly reflected it.

    • Jim Walker

      Fair to say Winker is predisposed to this?

  6. Hotto4Votto

    I hope they go ahead and place Moose on the IL. I agree with those who have mentioned previously that he never looked to be back in game shape. And now, if you can’t bend over to field your position, you’re not helping the team. The Reds mess around too often with this day to day nagging injuries. More often than not they eventually IL the player. Delaying the decision means playing shorthanded.

  7. Rod Andrews

    I dont think we should waste time worrying about Mil, LA, or SD. I’m concerned the Cardinals will get hot, and knock us out altogether. We need to win, win., and then win some more

    • Old Big Ed

      Nah. The Cardinals’ starting pitching is rancid.

  8. Old Big Ed

    Moustakas needs to go on the IL. He is almost certainly not fully healed from the heel/plantar fasciitis, and as a result he is vulnerable to other injuries like he got yesterday. He will need an entire off-season to heal up enough to play defense, and even then, the Reds better hope that the DH comes into play next year.

    In the meantime, the Reds can’t afford to play even one game with a short bench. Barrero is there in Miami. Activate him and play him. Strong, fast, young, fit 23-year-olds are better than injured, slow 32-year-olds. You can’t coach age.

    Farmer has an OPS of .555 over his last 15 games. He’s 31 and slow. It is exasperating to follow this team.

    I have a general theory that baseball over-values veterans because most of the guys making playing decisions (in this case, David Bell and whoever Krall listens to) were forced out of the game — in their minds — to make room for younger players. Bell thus over-values experience, rather than youth, when the objective evidence is that baseball and football every year becomes faster and therefore much more of a young man’s game.

    In baseball, young is good; old is bad. And I am old.

    • Jim Walker

      And I actually cut Moose some slack above. The batter prior to the three run blast reached on a ball Moose did get to just behind the 3B bag but then took forever to throw because he had to shuffle his feet to get his balance/ throwing motion set. The throw was on line but half a step late. Believe Statcast projected an xBA <.100 for it. That's how routine it was.

    • Alan Horn

      Agree 100% and I am old also. No one wants to admit they have gotten old and are usually the last ones to realize it. At a certain age(and it varies individually) your skill begin to diminish. For some it is more rapid that for others. The skill for the ones who call the shots is being able to recognize it when it happens. Sometimes it catches you with your pants down such as with the large contracts for Suarez and Moose. All you can do is cut your loses the best you can and move on.

      • Jim Walker

        I read multiple accounts that Pete Rose as manager became very attuned to this in the likes of old teammates and buddies like Tony P and Davey Concepcion but seemingly oblivious about himself till one day he just quit, without comment, writing his own name into the starting lineup and stopped using himself as a sub.

        My recollection is they played out that season effectively a man short then quietly passed him through waivers and moved his name to whatever list officially retired players go onto with no formal announcement.

    • Jim Walker

      And very well expressed about the youth factor. Amidst all the talk about team chemistry, I wonder what the likes of India (who at least gets to play every day), Stephenson, and some of the young pitchers who have carried their weight (Gutierrez and Santillan) think about chemistry that sits the more capable players. I guess their opinions and feeling don’t count in the “chemistry” formula?