Cincinnati didn’t get their first hit of the game until the 6th inning as Zach Thompson dominated on the night. The Pirates offense didn’t do a ton, either, but they did enough to pull out a 3-1 win over the Reds on Saturday and keep their hopes alive for a series split after Cincinnati took the first two games of the 4-game series.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (9-25) 1 4 0
Pittsburgh Pirates (14-19) 3 5 0
W: Thompson (2-3) L: Castillo (0-1) SV: Bedner (6)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

There wasn’t much offense for the Reds, who didn’t pick up their first hit of the game until Brandon Drury singled with two outs in the 6th inning. They got things going a little bit in the 7th inning when Mike Moustakas walked and moved up to second on a single by Aramis Garcia. Two outs later Albert Almora Jr. singled in Moustakas to get Cincinnati on the board and make it a 3-1 game.

Tommy Pham had a 2-out single in the top of the 8th inning and he stole second base to put himself in scoring position, but Mike Moustakas flew out to shallow right field to end the threat and the inning. With the Reds trailing 3-1 and needing some offense in the 9th they came up short, going in order.

The Pitching

Luis Castillo worked around a single in the 1st inning, but he couldn’t get out of a jam in the 2nd. He walked the leadoff batter and almost got out of things by recording outs in the next two plate appearances, but Rodolfo Castro singled to put runners on the corners and then Castillo balked in a run. Diego Castillo then singled and brought in the second run of the inning to put the Pirates up 2-0.

In the third inning Luis Castillo got a 1-2-3 inning, but it wasn’t without consequence for the Reds. Tyler Stephenson took a foul ball off of his face mask and had to exit the game. He was later seen in the dugout with a smile on his face, so hopefully that’s a sign that he’s doing ok and with him just having a concussion less than a month ago the team didn’t want to take any chances.

Daniel Vogelbach led off the 4th inning with a 433-foot home run to make it 3-0. From there Castillo would retire the next six batters in order to finish his outing. Ross Detwiler, who was called up from Triple-A prior to the start of the game, threw a hitless 6th inning with two strikeouts. Hunter Strickland took over for the 7th inning and he tossed a shutout inning, holding the Pirates lead at 3-1. Jeff Hoffman tossed a perfect 8th inning.

Key Moment of the Game

Luis Castillo’s balk in the 2nd inning. It brought in a run and moved another runner up to second, who later scored on a single.

Notes Worth Noting

Joey Votto walked in his first plate appearance while on rehab with Louisville. He had an RBI single in his second trip to the plate and later scored.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Pittsburgh Pirates

Sunday May 15th, 1:35pm ET

Hunter Greene (1-5, 7.62 ERA) vs Jose Quintana (1-1, 2.70 ERA)

34 Responses

  1. Mark Moore

    Meanwhile Joey’s Bats are up 3-0 in the 3rd. Joey looked pretty good to me.

    • Jim Walker

      AA finished his 1st week back at AAA with an OPS of 1.210. Most eye catching, an OBP of .400 over 25 PAs. His K rate was just under .333. 3HR; 2 doubles.

      4A he may be but at least he may have some value as a back end sweetener to a team not convinced his ceiling is 4A.

      Come June, the roster limit for pitchers is scheduled to drop to 13. Keep an eye on AA getting back to MLB in regard to that with the Reds or another team.

  2. Doc

    Show of hands of all those whose preseason pick was Conner Overton as staff ace 34 games into the season.

  3. LDS

    So the Reds are back to making lousy pitchers look good and Stephenson is injured again? Not a good day. I’m with the crowd that says move Stephenson to 1st. DH Votto against RH’ers and let him sit against LHs

    • MBS

      I’d hate to lose a good catcher with a great bat to another position. If he didn’t get rocked in SD, I doubt he would have been pulled today. I do think Stephenson should spend half of his starts at DH, 1B is an ok option to. I lean to DH as his second “position” just because it’s easier on the legs.

      • LDS

        At 6’4”, Stephenson a bit taller than the average catcher, whose heights cluster around 6’. I remember stories last season suggesting he was too tall and needed to change positions. I’d like to see the Reds maximize the return on his bat and his longevity. If that’s DH, 1B, or even sticking at catcher, fine. The issue with catching seems to be his injuries and the frequent rest days that take his bat out of the lineup.

    • Jim Walker

      Stephenson appears to have the build for a corner OF spot too, at least LF, and can still run decently. Whichever, 1B or LF, the DH gives them the option of having his bat in the lineup while working with him at alternate positions.

  4. Mark Moore

    Joey to lead of the Bats in the 4th. After that, I’ll shut it down for the night.

    • Mark Moore

      And another full-count BB for Employee #19 (wearing 39 tonight). Same upright stance. Maybe, just maybe we’ll get the “good” Votto back in about a week.

      Night, all.

      • Mark Moore

        Pulled for a pinch-runner. His night is done and pretty successful.

  5. Melvin

    Wise to pull TS. I agree with the move. I’m not ready to say he shouldn’t catch anymore at this point but maybe move him around more. He can play LF too.

    • Mark Moore

      Maybe he can play LF, maybe he can’t. But his bat in the line-up is a positive thing and nights like tonight are hard to deal with.

      • Melvin

        Yep. That’s why I’ve always said he should at least DH when not catching.

  6. Mark Moore

    AA with another big hit (2B down the line). Time to wrap it up for that one as well.

  7. Melvin

    AA is just playing with me and messing with my mind. I know he is. 🙂

    • MBS

      It would be interesting to see them pull up Aquino when he’s on fire in AAA, and then insert him into the Reds lineup everyday to ride the streak out. Locked in with the confidence up, maybe he could do something, but he’s probably a AAAA player unfortunately.

    • LDS

      Obviously, the level of competition is less in AAA. But, I’m curious what adjustments he made when he got back to Louisville. Coincidence? Maybe. But, maybe not.

      • Jim Walker

        I’ve seen AA in parts of 2 games via MiLB-TV.

        By and large, they are trying to pitch him like he was being pitched in MLB. Probably the breaking stuff doesn’t move as sharp and isn’t as quick to break as at MLB. The location command isn’t as good either.

        This said he isn’t chasing pitchers’ pitches; just as importantly, he isn’t missing mistake pitches.

    • GR

      I like the idea of TS as a part time catcher who plays 1b one day per week and dh 2-3 times per week.

  8. William

    Play Joey Votto every game when he gets back. He has a better track record than Moran. Plus, he is my favorite player. Enough said. Have a good night.

    • MK

      Tony Perez has a pretty good track record maybe we bring him back of course he turned 80 today. And more importantly he is my wife’s favorite. Good night.

  9. Rednat

    I don’t appreciate Joey Votto as a player as many others on this site. i guess i don’t understand the advance stats enough to realize his greatness. But gosh, i really respect his character and persona. he didn’t have to take this rehab assignment but he did it for the betterment of the team. i think this is his second time with covid and sounds like he was pretty sick to miss this much time and to need rehab. if i were him i would just call it quits. it is not like this team is going to the world series. but i appreciate him ,as a fan, getting back out there to try to help the team

    • Luke J

      .300/.415/.516/.931 career slash line. He led the league in OBP 7 times in a 9 year period. Those aren’t advanced stats, they are traditional stats. And they are top tier. If you can’t appreciate that greatness without advanced stats I can’t help you.

      • Rednat

        I guess Joey is a guy that gets on base a lot true. But he has been such a bad base runner I just don’t understand how that is an advantage for the team. In fact I cringe every time Joey walks because I am afraid his poor base running and lack of speed will be embarrassingly exposed. I guess I am old enough to remember a time when your high obp guys were typically your speed guys that would try to make the other team pay when they did get o base

      • Doug Gray

        You don’t understand how a guy not making outs and thus extending innings is an advantage?

      • Joey Red

        I think it’s a valid point that OBP can be misleading. Runs scored is a more important stat.

      • greenmtred

        The thing about scoring runs is that you have to get on base to do it. And mostly–exceptions being home runs or a shocking string of errors by the other team–you need help from a teammate to score. Doug can verify, but I’m pretty sure there is a very strong correlation between teams with good OBP and teams that score a lot of runs.

  10. Joey Red

    What’s the record for most games to get to 10 wins in a season?

  11. Mark Moore

    I’m going to assume TySteve was due to sit today and his absence isn’t directly connected with his exit last night. I’m hoping that’s the only factor here. I’m still thinking the hockey goalie type mask helps deflect that foul tip better, but I don’t play (anymore) so I really don’t know.

    Our line-up is certainly different today. Farmer sitting again, but Moose is back to DH (against a LHP no less). We shall see what we shall see. A win on get away day would be pretty sweet.