After taking the first game of the series Tuesday night, the Cincinnati Reds (26-47) try for a second straight series win tonight against the Chicago Cubs (28-46) at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

Hunter Greene faces the Cubs for the second time. He gave up five runs in five innings, including three home runs, on May 26 against Chicago at GABP. Greene will be opposed on the mound by right-hander Justin Steele.


  • Time: 8:05 pm ET
  • Place: Wrigley Field
  • Weather: 73 degrees; mostly sunny
  • TV: Bally Sports Ohio
  • Radio: 700 WLW


Cincinnati Reds

Chicago Cubs

2B Jonathan India LF Rafael Ortega
DH Brandon Drury C Willson Contreras
LF Tommy Pham DH Ian Happ
1B Joey Votto 3B Patrick Wisdom
SS Kyle Farmer SS Nico Hoerner
3B Donovan Solano RF Nelson Velazquez
RF Albert Almora Jr 1B Alfonso Rivas
CF Nick Senzel 2B David Bote
C Aramis Garcia CF Christopher Morel

-Jonathan India has a home run and two RBI off Steele in his career.

Starting Pitchers

Hunter Greene 70.0 5.66 4.11 5.70 4.11 1.36 28.9% 9.8%
Justin Steele 64.2 4.59 3.58 3.59 3.79 1.45 21.3% 10.1%


Greene has been a little inconsistent this season, but you’re going to have a little inconsistency with a rookie pitcher. He’s still pitched well despite those inconsistencies. Players have been able to catch up to his fastball after they see it a few times, so he needs to get better at locating his pitches. With a .277 batting average and a .335 on-base percentage, right handed hitters have hit better against Greene than left-handed hitters. However, while he’s given up 13 home runs to right-handed hitters, he’s also surrendered seven home runs to lefties. The home run ball has plagued him so much this season. His HR/FB% is 19.8%, and he’s already given up 20 home runs in 14 starts.

Greene had two terrific starts against Arizona and St. Louis in which he pitched seven innings of one-hit baseball with eight strikeouts, and five innings of one-run, two-hit baseball with seven strikeouts, respectively. But his last two starts were not so great, with five home runs and four walks surrendered in ten innings combined.


Justin Steele, a 26-year-old right-hander, has been in the Cubs organization since 2014, but has gotten an opportunity to pitch at the big league level over the last two seasons. One of Steele’s biggest problems in 2022 has been his lack of control. While he does have 61 strikeouts in 64.2 innings, he’s also walked 29 batters. His WHIP is close to 1.50, and his BABIP is .314. He has pitched slightly better in the month of June, but he’s still given up nine home runs in 24.2 innings. Steele throws mostly a fastball and a slider. His fastball velocity averages in the low 90s and his slider averages in the mid-80s.

News, Notes, And Pregame Reading

Jeff Hoffman is back with the Reds after a brief stint on the Covid IL, and a corresponding roster move was made.

It looks like Nick Lodolo will be returning early next week.

Chad Dotson wrote a good article on Graham Ashcraft in Cincinnati Magazine yesterday.

And in case you missed it, another Baseball is Life column dropped today from Redleg Nation writer Mary Beth Ellis.

84 Responses

  1. Mark Moore

    Another “absence of Moose” game. I’m OK with that.

    Hoping Greene can shake off the bad outing from the last time and focus on the Stupid Cubs.

    Time to Kick this Pig!!

  2. Old-school

    Best lineup balancing last place

    Votto is fading but id give him till the AS break as 1b and 4 hole hitter

    Hes earned it

    If his numbers still sub .700 ops at the break then…..

    Need to engage him on final year and 1/2 and balancing classy end with lineup construction and rest and handedness and need to develop next 1b

    • JB

      Moose get hurt? Says above Mike Moustakas is “available off the bench, but not to the point of starting.

  3. Bet on Red

    Also glad we have a mooseless night. With Solano and Drury, Moose should only appear to spell joey every once in a while at 1B

  4. LDS

    I saw that on this date in 1986, Sparky became the first manager to win 600 games in both leagues. Dick Wagner fired him in 1978, following a 92-69 season, 2nd place. Bell goes 83-79, finishes in 3rd place, and gets a three year extension. Where’s Dick Williams when you need him?

    • greenmtred

      Always necessary to compare rosters. Sparky “lost” 103 with a bad Detroit roster one year.

      • LarkinPhillips

        Always here to defend Bell. Last years roster in the second half should not have collapsed against a weak schedule. No way to defend that.

      • LDS

        Exactly LP, someone always has an excuse for mediocrity but never any accountability. As for Sparky at Detroit, his cumulative winning pct after 17 seasons is as high as Bell’s best season. And at least his Detroit teams scored in the post season.

      • Redgoggles

        I agree, but his job in the first half with that bullpen was very impressive. I wasn’t impressed in 2020, but they did end very strong to make the playoffs. Overall, I think Bell has been average to slightly above average with the hand he’s been dealt. The owner and his kin are to blame.

      • greenmtred

        I’m not defending Bell, per se, I’m just pointing out what actually is biggest determinant of whether a team wins or loses. The narrative that this must be the manager’s fault–based evidently upon your experiences in business–ignores what happens when good managers have weak rosters. The factors that lead to game outcomes, particularly over extended periods, are very complex. If you’re comfortable with simplistic assignment of “accountability,” so be it.

  5. Dennis Westrick

    One down, two to go! Here’s rooting for a second win in a 3 game sweep of the Cubbies and finally getting out of the MLB Central cellar!

    • LDS

      I wouldn’t put too much money on that bet. They couldn’t pull it off a couple of weeks ago when they were actually tied with the Cubs

  6. Indy Red Man

    Bull? He was out, but of course they don’t have the correct overhead camera. Either way HG can’t just keep giving opponents center cut. You still have to work zones or have some kind of an idea how to actually pitch.

  7. Jim Walker

    That play at the plate is what I hate about the new rules. The catcher has the ball and is positioned. He has every right to drop the hammer (knee) on the guy and make a tag.

    But they rarely do it because some calls have gone against them and awarded the run for an illegal block.

  8. Indy Red Man

    An Woo Jin alert. 7 ip, 2 hits, 0 runs, 2 walks, 7 Ks. The kid is the same age as HG and actually knows how to pitch. He also throws harder then Mahle and knows how to pitch to contact. We should make them an offer….esp if you’re moving Castillo and/or Mahle

    • Jim Walker

      Any idea of how transfers work between KBO and MLB? Are there rules/ agreements like NPB or is it heck for leather?

    • PTBNL

      Do you really think Veggie Bob will make any kind of offer for this kid?. You’ve been beating his drum for awhile. I think we need to be a little more realistic here.

  9. Beaufort Red

    Just curious. I feel Votto had a decent shot at the Hall of Fame. My question is, do you think he’s hurting his chances by hanging on and becoming a marginal player?

      • LarkinPhillips

        One big thing for him was OBP, and that goes down for him every AB lately. I still think he will be a HOF player either way.

    • Jim Walker

      Right off, fair or not, Votto doesn’t get the free extra credit points for playing on a team perennially in the playoffs or at least in the serious hunt down to the wire almost every year.

      His cause also won’t be helped by winning his only MVP so early in his career, 2010, then never repeating. He was robbed in 2017; and, almost certainly would have been right there for it in 2012 with a league-leading .474 OBP and personal career best OPS/OPS+ of 1.041/177, had he not lost the time (49 games) in mid season to the knee injury. But many, perhaps even most, HoF voters won’t recall these.

      One way or another I think Votto will eventually get into the HBoF but unless the writers deeply value metrics like WAR, OPS, and wRC+, he may have to wait for the veterans’ committee to put him in.

  10. Tomn

    Votto looks so awful against LHers. It’s about time he just admit it. He’s hurting the team and it’s ridiculous.

  11. Dennis Westrick

    Happ has been, and continues to be a Reds killer!

    • LarkinPhillips

      Except last night, when I bet on him to get a hit and RBI.

  12. LDS

    Thus far Steele’s stat line has made the Reds look really bad.

  13. LarkinPhillips

    The fact that Steele is wearing three chains really irritates me more than it should.

  14. Old-school

    Its all good

    McClain is AWOL
    And Elly and Hendrick hitting 3/4 in high A and 0-6 with 6 K’s

    Just dont trade castillo or mahle and keep them for 2023 world series and sign Drury and solano and farmer and Pham for 3 more years each

    Were almost there

    • Tomn

      Elly has been really you.pick out a

      • Old-school

        Im ellys biggest fan.

        Just the notion the reds are close in 2023 with a few tweaks is fantasy

    • Votto4life

      I think they could compete next but the “tweaks” are major ones. They would have to spend on free agency. They could keep Mahle and Castillo. Sign a couple of middle of the line up bats and invest in the bullpen. It could be done for an additional $40 millions dollars.

      It’s a fanstasy though, because Bob Castellini would never do it. But with this weak division, it is doable.

  15. Bet on Red

    THEY LISTENED TO ME…. Miami Valley Gaming changed its commercial. We are going on a 20-game winning streak. you heard it here first.

  16. Mark A Verticchio

    Greene may be really good someday, but right now he has a long way to go. Ashcraft is much more seasoned for now, that may change.

    • Jim Walker

      Ashcraft is 24 years old and before 2022 pitched a couple of years of NCAA ball, one of them in the SEC, and a full year in the minor leagues (A/AA).

      Greene who is 22, before 2022 had pitched one year in the minors split between AA and AAA.

  17. Dennis Westrick

    80 pitches in 4 innings is far from stellar for Greene! The strikeouts are nice but he has a lot to learn!

  18. Roger Garrett

    Just can’t walk guys with his stuff.Got to make them put it in play.Control often is the achilles heel of a young guy.Hit a batter followed by a double and now walks 2 and another double.No worries for me cause kid is smart and will learn.Ashcraft has power stuff as well and is just better at throwing strikes.Greene will need another pitch or a slower pitch off his fastball.

    • Dennis Westrick

      Agree 100% Plus the Reds have got to be more productive on offense! Cubs have 3 runs on only 2 hits!

  19. Roger Garrett

    Reds getting some breaks on some infield hits but double play right there killed an inning.Sometimes it just goes that way.

  20. Roger Garrett

    Bell just threw in the towel and not that it matters much in this game or in the season.Maybe just trying to get somebody going out of the pen.We will see.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      Maybe the innings limitation has already begun for Greene.

      • Roger Garrett

        Good point Tom.It is certainly would be the right thing to do for him and long term for the team.

      • Jim Walker

        Looked like he was not happy about being pulled so, if innings management is the word of the day then in typical Reds style, Greene must not have been CC’d on the memo 😉

  21. Bet on Red

    The 20-game winning streak will start tomorrow is my new prediction. lol Boy Cessa has really devalued over this season

  22. VaRedsFan

    Cessa among a long list of pitchers that was good when he got here, but has regressed the longer he stays.

    He would be in DFA territory, if there was any help at all in the minors….alas, none exists.

    • JB

      Like I posted yesterday, Cessa can’t keep it in the ballpark. There is not much to pick from in the bullpen.

    • LDS

      Read your first sentence again and ask yourself why. The same is true of the batters.

  23. Roger Garrett

    Yep and Cessa ain’t got it again tonight.Pen pieces are just that way and Reds spent nothing and well they have nothing much with all the injuries.Diaz,Tony and Hoffman may help when they return.Lodolo starts and Minor to the pen may help but it just is what it is for this year.

  24. Daytonnati

    I love the Reds, but sometimes watching them is like dental surgery.

    • Roger Garrett

      Yep but we always get a little excited when they do well but we know they have so many issues and for them to string 4 or 5 wins in a row with this roster is just not going to happen.Play the Cubs and Bucs a lot so they will win a few but I really just want to see how they sort through these players and develop a plan for next year and beyond.Reds have just pretended and somewhat teased us here and there but its just been smoke and mirrors and we know it.Krall said he is committed to signing and developing players so we will see how that goes.

  25. VaRedsFan

    OK…let’s just keep hitting it to Bote

  26. JB

    Bote makes Moustskas look like a gold glover.

  27. Dennis Westrick

    The walk rate by Reds relief pitchers is ridiculous! Seldom, if ever, do they pitch an inning w/o a walk! Objective is the hold the lead, not pour gas on the fire!

  28. Bet on Red

    reported walking corpse doubles the reds on the board… there we go

  29. Indy Red Man

    David Bote lolllllllllll. If those 3 balls are hits then I’m a Yale graduate. Thats ridiculous. I’d give Senzel a hit because he can run, but the other 2?

    Nice job by Joey. Thats the only way he’s going to get back what he once was and thats taking the ball to left-center like he used to. Get atleast 2 here and it might become a game again

  30. Roger Garrett

    I am sure it is not what they want to do but it appears that the thought is just let it rip for 20 or so pitches and lets see what happens.Of course there is a reason they are in the pen but with most guys only throwing 2 pitches I would think there is an issue some where.Don’t they lead the league in walks?Maybe its just better pitchers are needed cause it ain’t working whatever is being taught.

  31. CFD3000

    2nd and 3rd no outs and they score… no runs. Tough luck for Farmer but sheesh. Come on boys.

    Nice hitting against a lefty by Votto. More of that please.

    And I think Drury’s hit that crossed up Bote was redirected coming off the side of the pitcher’s mound. So Bote has only really booted two grounders…

  32. Roger Garrett

    Not our night for sure but had a chance to get back in it and failed.

  33. William

    Votto is going under .300 career average. He will make the hall of fame, but it will take awhile. I understand why Bench retired at 35 now. These older years definitely count in consideration of the Hall of Fame. It is only fair to say a .210 average should cause anyone to pause on whether you deserve it over another player. There are many players with good major league careers. He is my favorite player. I think he should consider retiring unless there is greed for more money.

    • Votto4life

      If Joey never gets another major league at bat it wouldn’t make a bit of difference. This team absolutely stinks. They have 3 players in their line up that are any good and one of them (Drury) will be a free agent in a couple of months.

      They have ZERO position players in their farm systems that will be major league ready in 2023 and only one who might be ready by 2024.

      If the Reds front office blames this season on injuries, we will have to repeat this nightmare again next season.

      The Starting pitching is good enough to compete, but it won’t be after the trade deadline.

      The Reds need a bullpen and two middle of the line up bats to be competitive next year. So, if ownership was willing to invest $30 million dollars in this team, next year they could actually compete for the NL Central.

      We all know Castellini is not going to spend that type of dough, but with the cuts the team has made, he could reasonably do so. Instead, they will blame this season on injuries and will sign some washed up free agents at the end of spring training.

    • Jim Walker

      A big part of Bench’s retirement was that his knees were gone and with them the magic lateral movement that had been his hallmark. He was still a league average hitter per OPS but there was no DH and he couldn’t play in the field.

      I’ve often wondered what might have been if Driessen had not had the huge World Series in 1976 and instead of him Bench would have moved to 1B by 1978 or 79.

      • Votto4life

        I was never all that impressed by Bench the hitter. He had a couple of outstanding seasons at the plate, but I seem to remember him hitting into a lot of double plays and a lot of week fly balls to left. He had a weird habit of letting go of the bat and swinging with just one arm. When he played 3B he wasn’t even league average.

        Bench was the best catcher I have even seen though. No one else comes close.

  34. Roger Garrett

    Double on an 0-2 pitch is not good.Still hoping one of our pen guys may put up a zero tonight.

  35. JB

    This bullpen is crap. I think Blandino would be better than most of them.

  36. William

    Too much greed for money in modern day baseball. If it were up to me, I would tax them all 50% and give to the poor. The players would still have plenty of money. I would not feel sorry at all for them paying the tax.

  37. LDS

    The Reds came to Chicago in last place. Looks like they’ll leave in last place. Down by 6, Bell will go little league and empty the bench.

  38. Roger Garrett

    Maybe next inning.It really is sad that a major league pen as a whole is just as awful as ours.

    • LDS

      Maybe if Bell would start pulling the relief pitchers after 3-4 bad batters instead of 7-8 or more, they’d get a bit more serious about their performance. The idea of actually having to perform in order to play is a foreign concept on this team. Fire somebody. Bench somebody. Pretend winning matters although on the Reds it does not.

  39. LarkinPhillips

    Detwiler has given up runs in 4 of his last 6 appearances. He will either be on the IL or DFA soon.

  40. Roger Garrett

    Two doubles and a homer on cutters set on a tee to righties.May want to try another pitch cause it ain’t working and now a walk so next man up.

  41. Dennis Westrick

    The Reds bullpen is obviously confused! They need a new mission statement!

  42. Roger Garrett

    WOW Fins Garcia took the Cards 100 mph closer deep with 2 out and one on in the ninth and Alcantara I think it is completes what he started and Fins win 4-3.

  43. Roger Garrett

    We didn’t like Givens I guess.

  44. Dennis Westrick

    All you need to know about tonight’s game! Reds have one (1) run ob seven (7) hits!
    Cubs have seven (7) runs on eight (8) hits!

  45. Old-school

    Reds need to go 6 man rotation in july

    Get lodolo up
    Limit greene and ashcraft innings
    Preserve castillo and mahle arm

    Minor finally has a role

    4 meaningless starts in July then Dfa

  46. LarkinPhillips

    Joe Boyle tonight: 5IP 1H 0BB 12K. Lowered his ER to 0.65 on the year. Mcgarry homered again tonight in AA. Thought we all could use some good news tonight at least.

  47. Bet on Red

    Reportedly dead player doubles again….. I am beginning to think he is still alive despite this group’s claims to the contrary

    • Roger Garrett

      It was 5-0 when he hit the first one and 7-1 now.All count but its cookie time for sure

      • CFD3000

        The guy was on base 3 times in 4 plate appearances, with two XBH, a run and an RBI and you’re dismissing his night because he made one out leading off the second inning? That’s an impossible standard if that’s not good enough. Dude just passed Stan Musial on a list of most XBH against the Cubs – that guy was pretty good as I recall… enjoy the positives. Life’s too short and this team isn’t making the playoffs this year anyway.

  48. Roger Garrett

    Got a clean inning from the rookie and another double from Joey so it was worth staying up.Night all and go Reds.Nine hits and 1 run not good.

  49. Bet on Red

    Thats gotta hurt In fact I bet it hurts

  50. Bet on Red

    Bronson Arroyo filing a lawsuit as we speak. As I type, Drury bombs to start the comeback