Tonight the Reds open a three game set versus the Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix to close out the current road trip. The Reds need to win this series to finish .500 on the 6 game trip. Anyone among us wondering if the Reds might sweep the series and come home to Cincinnati with a wining road trip is hereby nominated for the RLN optimist of week award. Game time is 9:40 Eastern time.
SP: Mike Minor
SP: Merrill Kelly
|1. Nick Senzel (CF)
2. Brandon Drury (DH)
3. Tommy Pham (LF)
4. Joey Votto (1B)
5. Kyle Farmer (SS)
6. Matt Reynolds (2B)
7. Mike Moustakas (3B)
8. Albert Almora (RF)
9. Chris Okey (C)
|1. Jordan Luplow (LF)
2. Josh Rojas (3B)
3. Ketel Marte (2B)
4. Christian Walker (1B)
5. Daulton Varsho (RF)
6. Carson Kelly (C)
7. Jake McCarthy (DH)
8. Alek Thomas (CF)
9. Geraldo Perdomo (SS)
Lefthander Mike Minor gets the call for the Reds. Righty Merrill Kelley is scheduled to go for the Diamondbacks. These same 2 pitchers squared off against each other 5 days ago at GABP in a game won 7-0 by the Diamondbacks
|Links: Mike Minor’s Stats | Merrill Kelley’s Stats
Mike Minor makes his third start of the season after an extended stay on the injured list with a shoulder issue which arose in spring training. As Minor’s WHIP and ERA indicate, he has been rocked in both his previous 2022 starts. Left handed hitters have actually hit slightly better against him in 2022, if that really matters given his OPS versus right handers is a robust .936. Looking back to Minor’s 2021 and career splits, there is not a significant difference how left handed and right handed batters have fared against him. The question for Reds fans is whether Minor is still getting up to speed or is at the end of his 12 year career.
There is also not a lot to choose from on Merrill Kelly’s handedness splits. Kelley is not a power pitcher. Instead he uses a variety of pitches to keep hitters off balance. As the usage table below indicates he uses each of 5 pitches more than 10% of the time. He sends three different variety of fastballs toward the plate at virtually the same speed and trusts the differing movement patterns to keep hitters from being able to barrel the pitches. Then when the hitters think they have the fastballs figured out, Kelley will show them a curve or change up. Kelly dominated the Reds at GABP last week, allowing just 1 hit in 6 innings of work. Reds fans can hope that seeing Kelley again so soon will tip the scales to the favor of Reds batters.
David Bell called 5 relievers to the mound Sunday. Jeff Hoffman threw 25 pitches. He figures to be unavailable tonight. Alexis Diaz and Luis Cessa have worked on consecutive days accumulating total pitch counts of 34 and 25 respectively for the double duty. Diaz is almost certainly unavailable and Cessa questionable at best.
Reiver Sanmartin was been activated from the Reds taxi squad.
Caleb Smith has worked consecutive days logging 43 pitches in the process. He appears to be unavailable. Sean Poppen and old friend Noe Ramirez also worked Sunday and have thrown 27 pitches each Friday through Sunday
News and Notes
Hunter Greene has been named the NL Player Of The Week. Redleg Nation has the details here.
The Reds have made a number of roster moves. Bobby N. Has them nicely organized:
Reds roster moves:
-Mike Moustakas activated from the IL and LHP Reiver Sanmartin called up.
-Alejo Lopez and Colin Moran optioned to Triple-A.
-Jake Fraley transferred to the 60-day IL. Nick Lodolo beginning a rehab assignment in the Arizona rookie league.
— Bobby Nightengale (@nightengalejr) June 13, 2022
UPDATE: In a later breaking roster move, the Reds have placed Aristides Aquino on the 10 day IL (calf sprain) and Activated Jonathan India. India does not appear to be starting tonight.
Thought Of The Day
The Reds win Sunday felt good, especially after the crushing 27th out walk off winner by the Cardinals on Saturday. However even in victory, warts were evident for the Reds.
On Sunday, the middle infield failed to turn a simple GIDP on 2 occasions. One GIDP misfire cost a run. Both cost the starting pitcher extra pitches which shifted the responsibility for additional outs onto the beleaguered bullpen. That bullpen nearly blew a 3 run lead the end of the game (again). These miscues added to the impression over the weekend that the Reds defense often looked more like Little League than MLB quality.
Hopefully the Reds will find a way to win at least 2 games in Phoenix. In the process, let’s hope they play more fundamentally sound baseball. GO REDS.
When and Where
Game time: 9:40pm ET
Where: Chase Field Phoenix, AZ
Watch: Bally Sports Ohio, MLB.tv
Listen: 700 WLW AM (Cincinnati area)
Forecast: 100° but who cares. Chase Field is indoors and air conditioned.