A pitchers duel broke out at Great American Ball Park on Tuesday night as both Nick Lodolo and Max Scherzer returned from the injured list on the night and took out their frustrations on their opponents. The two combined to give up five hits and struck out 19 batters in 10.2 innings between the two of them.

Final R H E
New York Mets (50-31)
0 6 0
Cincinnati Reds (28-52)
1 4 1
W: Strickland (2-2) L: Lugo (1-2)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

Cincinnati only got two hits against Max Scherzer on the night – a single by Donovan Solano in the 2nd and a single by Tyler Naquin in the 4th. They also didn’t walk against him as they were mostly helpless against him as his absolute dominance at Great American Ball Park continued (His ERA in GABP is now 0.27).  The Mets bullpen picked up where Scherzer left off, holding the Reds to a Nick Senzel single over the next two innings.

Entering the bottom of the 9th the game was still scoreless, but the middle of the lineup was due up. Tommy Pham led off the inning with a double down the right field line and then the Mets opted to intentionally walk Tyler Naquin. That brought Donovan Solano to the plate. Seth Lugo walked him, unintentionally, loading the bases. That led to a mound visit before Mike Moustakas stepped up to the plate. He jumped ahead in the count before lining out to center, but the ball was easily deep enough to plate Pham from third base for the winning run.

The Pitching

While Max Scherzer was dominating the Reds offense, Nick Lodolo was doing the same thing to the Mets. The lefty hadn’t pitched since April 24th and it sure didn’t look like he missed a beat as he tossed 4.2 shutout innings while striking out eight batters along the way. Joel Kuhnel came on to finish the 5th inning and he recorded three outs before giving way to Ross Detwiler with two outs in the 6th. He got out of the inning and recorded the first two outs in the 7th before giving up a single to Brandon Nimmo. That led to Jeff Hoffman entering the game and he gave up a single to Starling Marte to put the go-ahead run on second, but Hoffman clamped down and got Francisco Lindor to pop up to catcher Michael Papierski to end the inning and keep the shutout alive. He’s return to fire a shutout 8th inning before giving way to Hunter Strickland. That decision worked out as he made quick work of the Mets, throwing just nine pitches to send the game to the bottom of the 9th in a 0-0 tie. That set up a walk-off win for Cincinnati on a sacrifice fly.

Notes Worth Noting

Over at RedsMinorLeagues.com the Midseason Cincinnati Reds Top 25 Prospect List is now available.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

New York Mets vs Cincinnati Reds

Wednesday July 6th, 6:40pm ET

David Peterson (5-1, 3.24 ERA) vs Graham Ashcraft (4-2, 4.53 ERA)

63 Responses

  1. Doc

    Dominant start by Lodolo and a glimpse of what life could be like with a bullpen.

  2. Reddawg2012

    4 2/3 scoreless innings for the bullpen tonight. I guess even blind squirrels find a nut sometimes. I for one will take it. Go Reds! Let’s get the series tomorrow, shall we?

    • Jim Walker

      even blind squirrels find a nut sometimes.

      This was one of my dad’s favorite quips for an unexpected happy event. Thanks for the memory!

      • Indy Red Man

        Or “Even a broken clock is right twice a day”

  3. Rednat

    i am so torn. i always love when the reds win. especially in front of a packed house full of Mets fan. But I would rather the reds win 40 games this year than 60. if they win 60 then not a darn thing changes, not only within the organization but within the league itself. if they only win 40 then at least the commissioners office will at least know who the reds are and maybe will acknowledge that, yeah, there is something wrong with the state of baseball right now.

    i am just not as mad as others on this site with ownership. i mean, they went out this offseason and got the players that were available to them- Pham, Moran, Minor. who knew thay would be this bad.

    • VaRedsFan

      Pretty much everyone knew they would be this bad. Minor has been 5+ ERA guy for several seasons before this year. The Pirates gave up on Moran….enough said. Pham has a little left in the tank, and plays the game the right way. He’s basically somebody you can put out there, because the Reds don’t have an OF prospect knocking on the door.

    • JayTheRed

      I think including Pham in this assessment isn’t very fair. The guy has been pretty productive, and he plays hard daily.

      Moran is basically a bench player with some pop, and Minor has not been good for a few years now.

  4. Old-school

    Nice to see Lodolo and bullpen shutout a Legit World Series contender
    Hard to root for an offense with so many rental players who wont be herer. Can we just get past the hitters who arent future Reds? Offense scored 1 run

    Need huge influx of hitting

    • Earmbrister

      Offense scored one run on a night that they faced a HOF starter, who was dealing. And they walked away with a 1-0 victory. Not a lot of shame in that.

      • TR

        I tuned in after the top of the fifth inning with the score 0-0 and thought ‘here we go again.’ But, that 1-0 win feels real good.

    • TR

      I hope offense is a Red’s priority as trade-time is coming up.

  5. Rcsodak

    I guess bell wanted to win….didn’t play cessa.

    • Earmbrister

      And yet he pitched Kuhnel. Not a lot of good choices in what remains of that bullpen.

  6. MBS

    I really like that they put Lodolo between Greene, and Ashcraft. Breaking up that 1, 2 hard RHP punch with Lodolo is a smart move. Lodolo did a nice job with 8 K’s tonight.

    • TR

      Lodolo is a ray of hope for the Reds future. They definitely need a solid lefty in the starting pitching lineup, and that has been missing for awhile.

      • VaRedsFan

        I thought Minor was left handed??? 😉

      • TR

        You’re apparently not sure that Minor is lefthanded.

  7. Shane C.

    I am still not sure what to make of Pham but he really seems like a guy who plays with a lot of heart and hates to lose.

  8. Indy Red Man

    Recorded it and just sped thru it. Lodolo was electric! He has to gain pitch efficiency, etc, but still very promising!

    As for the Mets. If you can’t score on our pen in 4.1 then you’re not a WS contender. Oh but its just one night…..No! If you can’t score on those scrubs then you’re not a contender. Not as currently constructed and I don’t care how good their starters are.
    Maybe if they added a Benintendi and Drury or something?

    I like Pham! Slapping seems feminine to me and getting suspended isn’t really acceptable, but he plays hard and has some fire! He’s in good shape at 34 and could probably be a B- player for atleast 2 more years. Just not a 3rd hitter on a good team

    • Indy Red Man

      Just a thought but pulling Senzel out of leadoff seemed to help so why not do the same with India? He’s pull happy and getting himself out currently. Naquin can leadoff and drop India down and take some pressure off. Maybe Senzel or India could leadoff vs lefties only

      • Jim Walker

        Same thought here about getting India out of the lead off spot until he can get up to speed. We know from last year he can do that job. He just has to get into the groove.

      • VaRedsFan

        I’ve never seen it as pressure depending on your spot in the batting order. I see each AB as a separate entity…Batter vs. pitcher. for that AB. I doubt he’s thinking…”Since I am leading off, I need to do something different than if I were batting 6th.”

        Move him down because he’s not performing, is a solid enough reason to me.

      • Scott C

        You also have to understand that last year India had Winker, Castellanos and Votto hitting behind him. No disrespect to Pham and Drury but Winker and Castellanos they are not.

      • Steven Ross

        It’s a good thought and should happen but Bell is always tardy making obvious changes. Just move Senzel to leadoff for now and drop India to take some pressure off. While we’re at it, get Votto out of cleanup. His best numbers are batting 3rd. Move Drury to 4th. It’s not that hard.

  9. Kevin H

    A win is a win.. The bullpen pitched shut out baseball. Let’s hope that is a start of something. Some say Reds can’t beat “real teams” then when it happens they find another excuse as to why Reds are bad. We can all agree this team isn’t good, however give credit were credit is due. Pirates swept dodgers in LA earlier this year. Are the Dodgers then not world series contenders?

    • VaRedsFan

      Good teams are going to lose 60, Bad teams are going to win 60. Bad teams are going to beat good teams on certain days. It’s happened for over 100 years.

      • Jim Walker

        Sparky Anderson liked to say that all teams are going to win a third of their games regardless of what the manager did and lose a third of their games regardless of what the manager did, thus making his job to do what he could to help the team win as many as possible of the remaining third while not getting in the team’s way in the process.

        So, what does this say about the current Reds team and/ or their manager as they clip along at just a tick better than .333 as the mid point of the season arrives.

      • Oldtimer

        Sparky averaged 96 W as Reds manager. So he was 42-12 in those middle third games.

      • Earmbrister

        I think we can all agree that Sparky’s rosters were typically MUCH MUCH better than the current roster …

        It’s like comparing a thin paper plate to fine china.

      • Kevin H

        Yes well aware of that. My response was to the suggestion the Mets are not a ws contender just because they couldn’t score off reds bullpen lastnight..

  10. Kevin H

    How about that. A pitching fuel. Mets are a solid team. Kudos to Reds pitching and they got a win.

    Maybe start of a winning streak!!!

  11. AMDG

    Outside of a few months last summer (May 20 thru Aug 19) India is a career 0.221 hitter (0.218 before that stretch and 0.223 since that stretch).

    I wonder at what point they stop using him atop the lineup getting so many AB’s for a guy who has clearly struggled at the plate?

    • LarkinPhillips

      So outside of HALF of last season the defending ROY is below average. Guy has been hurt this year and has no protection around him. Last year he was the best rookie in baseball. Maybe let’s ease up on him a tad before declaring he clearly struggles at the plate.

      • Kevin H

        Isn’t that what we do here? I mean Senzel had a good first season and now in his fourth season his career is “on the brink” heck Tyler Stephenson is injury prone. We just don’t talk about that yet

    • Luke J

      lol talk about cherry picking. Those “few months” last May-August account for the majority of his career. And he was hitting .295 before the injury this year.

    • Indy Red Man

      No more talk of protection for the leadoff hitter….sorry but that makes no sense.
      Maybe if its Buxton leading off and 2 guys got on in the bottom of their lineup, but most leadoff guys can’t hit 6 Hrs in a week. Nobody is pitching around India to get to Drury

      • LarkinPhillips

        Far from pitching around. But it does make them more likely to throw him off speed on 3-2 or 3-1 as there is no fear of the next batter rather than grooving him a fastball and making him “earn his way on base.” Protection probably is the wrong word, but if a better hitter is behind him he is more likely to get fastballs.

  12. Mark Moore

    Sitting in my hotel room watching the tail end of the game and that nice fly ball by 3M. Pretty sweet.

    Great effort by Lodolo and the pen.

  13. Jim t

    Well pitched game. The reds beat a HOF’er.

  14. Roger garrett

    Well played game.Lodolo is electric.Still will lose 100 games.Hope the deadline reveals some kind of plan.Old players are just old like I am and baseball has one spot at DH for them.Better go young cause everybody else that has a clue knows it.

    • TR

      I’ll cheer, in my way, for the Reds in each game, regardless. Whether it’s 100 losses or not, I’m not able to fix it.

  15. doofus

    Lodolo remined me of Madison Bumgarner.

  16. SultanofSwaff

    Reynolds, Solano, Drury, Farmer, Moose. Criminy, we need to free up the logjam. Farmer’s OPS is 102….if there’s ever a time to trade him it’s NOW. Reynolds did everything just as well at SS, he could back up Barrero the rest of the season.

    I was wondering if Moose has been unlucky this year. Not really…his BABIP is .273. Digging into the numbers his OPS+ in day games is 39. OPS+ vs. hard throwers is 125, but just 47 vs. finesse pitchers. Interesting. Senzel is an odd bird too–his OPS+ ahead in 2-1 and 3-1 counts is -15! On 0-2 and 2-2 it’s 230.

    • Jim t

      @sultan, agree it’s time to trade Farmer. His value will never be any higher. With the earliest we will contend being 2024 it is time. Reynolds could certainly back up Barrero but I think our next SS will be De la Cruz. I hope Barrera can get squared away but I’m not holding my breadth.we have a lot of bench pieces on our roster but few high end talents. We need corner infielders and corner outfielders.

  17. Roger Garrett

    If and when Barrero takes the field it will be obvious he is the best athlete on the field.However unless he is given,yes I said given,the job at short and he plays every day the rest of the year then keep him down or trade him.No need to bring him up like last year and he sets and watches,gets 60 at bats or so and well we can’t figure out whats wrong.Its a 100 loss season with him up here or without him.India needs to move down and switch with Senzel right now.Can you imagine Barrero and India up the middle with TySteve behind the plate and Senzel in center for a few years.

    • Jim t

      @roger, i guess I’m a old man compared to most on this board but I’m not giving anybody any position. He needs to earn it. My hope is his bat will take off at AAA and he will be brought up to ML where he will take advantage of any opportunity he is given. I understand that we are rebuilding and playing young talent is the right thing to do but there is a fine line you walk. Giving him a spot with how he has performed this year and sitting or moving Farmer a vet who has played well will not make for a good clubhouse. Farmer has earned his opportunity. Now if we trade Farmer and insert Barrera I’m fine with that but showing little regard for what Farmer has accomplished as compared to Barrera is not a good plan. While Barrera is a better fielder his 39% strike out rate in AAA will not help our team. His performance may be injury related but he has to get that behind him and begin to show it is behind him.

      • SultanofSwaff

        Jim, will a ‘bad’ clubhouse result in more losses than we’ve already experienced with a ‘good’ clubhouse?

      • Jim Walker

        @sultan 100+ No but everyone will feel more comfortable about the losing than if the clubhouse wasn’t “good”.

        On a team like this Reds team, I’d prefer a Kevin Mitchell, Greg Vaughn, or Tommy Pham (minus the slapping antics) to a Farmer.

      • Jim t

        @roger it may create a clubhouse where no one wants to play here.

      • Indy Red Man

        Actually his 39% K rate will make him a good teammate since everyone else does that too

      • Roger Garrett

        I respect your opinion but I never said anything about Farmer.In fact I like him and he can play on my team anytime not just as the starting shortstop who by the way was given that job last year because Eugenio was awful.Not sure if I can relate to a good clubhouse although I hear some say this guy is good in the clubhouse or that guy isn’t.Neither of us will have to worry about Barrero cause he will not be up until he walks on water or as you said Farmer is no longer here.Farmer for his career is a below average player and if you take away his stats lefties he is way below average this year as well.I am not against Farmer I am just for Barrero.

    • JohnnyTV

      I don’t get the whole “earn it” thing, and I’m kind of an aging fogey, myself.

      MLB lineups are full of guys who are “earning it on the job”.

      How many conversations here about Hunter Greene and whether he has anything left to “earn”. Clearly, he’s been “given the job” and Reds’ fans here are willing to tolerate him learning on the job, too.

      Senzel’s MiLB stats were not stellar, either, and if he’s stays healthy enough he’s also earning as he goes.

      India had mediocre MiLB stats as well and was “given” the job at 2b based on only a strong ST. And it payed off.

      What’s so different about Barrero? Except that a Lunchpail is currently filling in the position with decent hitting and mediocre at best fielding.

      At shortstop.

      I know Cincinnati has its soft spot for the Rose, Freel, Rolen hard-nosed types.

      Give me a slick gloved / vacuum cleaner fielder at shortstop any day. He’ll save more runs than any difference in BA or RBIs you might get from the Lunchpail.

  18. Jim Walker

    Great to have an exciting win spear headed by the effort of a guy who appears to be a core piece of the Reds moving into the future.

    However I found myself LOL that even on a night like this the Reds came up with another “only in Reds Land” moment. Prior to the game Aramis Garcia was (allegedly) examined and declared healthy enough not to require a trip to the IL for his left finger injury.

    Catcher Mark Kolozsvary was subsequently optioned back to AAA to create a spot for Tyler Naquin to be activated. Right, nothing unusual so far. BUT then the starting lineup drops and Michael Papierski, not Garcia is the Reds starting catcher. Only in Reds Land.

  19. Indy Red Man

    Senzel is 17 for last 40 (.425) raising his avg. from .203 to .250. Not much power with only 1 double and 1 cheapie oppo HR the other night, but he did crush a ball off the wall in Wrigley where Almora ran the wrong way for some reason and held Nick to a single. I’ve been harder on him then anyone on RLN, but its encouraging. India has the HBP and Nick has the catchers interference. Whatever it takes!! Keep Almora as a 4th OFer and I think they could be in good shape there!

  20. Old-school

    There is a great article up on ESPN from Jeff Passan(paywall) on the death of starting pitching in MLB and how innings from starters are at an all-time low. 3rd time through the order, max effort pitchers,not pitching to contact, 13 man pitching staffs and franchises not building starters in the minors are all reasons. The Dodgers A franchise doesnt let their pitchers go more than 3 innings.

    This is where the Reds can buck the trend and develop starters who are built for going deep in the game. A quick look at the minors of Reds top prospects and only Conner Phillips is averaging more than 5 IP per start. Chase Petty is doing pretty good for age 19 and low A. Even Brandon WIlliamson and Abbott arent at 5 IP/start.

    Castillo and Mahle are even more valuable when you look at their durability and IP. Mahle is pushing 100 innings and Castillo is hitting his stride and both fighting through that 3rd time through the order to find ways to get guys out. Thats what pitching is. Finding different ways to get the same guys out multiple times and part of the chess match that makes baseball fun. Watching a parade of releivers covering 4-to 5 innings is not.

    Theo Epstein is studying this and wants to fix it and get action back in the game. The shift will be outlawed next year and a pitch clock will be in place. Epstein says that Starting pitchers are part of baseball entertainment and a protagonist and a reason people go to the game and buy their tickets ahead of time knowing they get to see a certain pitcher.They want to see their starting pitcher go a couple hours and go through the up and downs and small battles inning to inning. He is the main character. They dont want relievers warming up in the bullpen in the 4th inning.

    One solution articulated is to go to an 11 man pitching rotation. That would force clubs to get pitchers back focused on pitch efficiency and outs and pitching to contact and max effort short stint guys wouldn’t be as valuable on an 11 man staff and relievers would have to pitch more than to 3 batters.It would reverse the trend in the minors of max effort, pitch design short outing guys and get back to the Dave Stewarts and Pedro Martinez’s pitching 250 innings and competing in the 6th/7th innings regularly.

    Im all for it.

    • Indy Red Man

      Interesting! I just think everyone throws so hard now that its unavoidable. Lodolo was def max effort to hit 96 last night. The Moneyball effect has each lineup with guys like Nimmo or LeMahieu at the top of the lineup and soaking up pitches each at-bat. Even when everyone is trying to launch the ball it takes some pitches to strike them out. Most aren’t going up there to make contact.

      Side note…..OS you still think Seattle stinks? Won 12 of 15! Winker was warming up too before getting suspended. They have young talent and even Geno is +2.2 war….whatever that means? They were smart and picked up Chris Flexen from the Korean league and he’s ate up some innings. 14-6 last year with 3.61 era (4.00 this year). Had some reliever named Munoz in there yesterday throwing 102

      • Indy Red Man

        Well I actually I think every hitter goes up there to make contact))). Intended as “to just make contact”

      • Old-school

        They are trying. The AL West with KC and Rangers and Angels are poor. Still think they will be lucky to win 81 games.

        Houston and the Yankees have basically clinched.
        Twins looking like the AL Central qualifier and then you’ve got the Red Sox on fire and Blue Jays and Rays and Guardians in the wild card mix.

        I like WInker and while I’m glad Suarez contract is gone, I still like and root for the guy. Not had a chance to see their young superstar Julio but sure, make a wildcard run.

  21. west larry

    I like the lineup today. All righthanders against this lefty,

  22. Jim Walker

    Early Wednesday lineup pre-late scratch version.

    SP: Graham Ashcraft
    1. Jonathan India (DH)
    2. Brandon Drury (1B)
    3. Tommy Pham (LF)
    4. Kyle Farmer (SS)
    5. Donovan Solano (3B)
    6. Matt Reynolds (2B)
    7. Nick Senzel (CF)
    8. Albert Almora Jr. (RF)
    9. Michael Papierski (C)

    Farmer back.
    No Votto, Moose nor Naquin vs LH starter for Metz
    Garcia apparently remains too healthy for the IL but too hurt to catch!?! 😉

    • LDS

      Rosecrans posting Mahle to the IL, strained right shoulder? Anyone confirm? And Farmer is probably back in the lineup too soon. Those injuries generally linger past a couple of days.

      • LDS

        NVM – Sheldon just confirmed 15-day. So much for his trade value.

      • Jim Walker

        And the official @LosRojos twitter (which always aces @reds on my timeline for whatever reason) has Mahle to IL also.

        And Okey has cleared waivers and been assigned to Bats (AAA).