The game started out well for the Cincinnati Reds, but things turned quickly in the 5th inning as the pitching staff continued to struggle throwing strikes and the Chicago Cubs took advantage. Before it was all over the Cubs walked 11 times en route to a 9-3 win that saw the Reds offense go quiet after a 3rd inning home run from Kyle Farmer.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (53-80) 3 4 0
Chicago Cubs (57-78) 9 9 1
W: Wesneski (1-0) L: Gibaut (1-1)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Offense

Cincinnati got some help from the Cubs in the 1st inning. Jonathan India walked to start the game and then moved to second when Nick Madrigal threw the ball away trying to start a double play on an Albert Almora Jr. grounder. Kyle Farmer hit a bloop down the right field line to follow and Seiya Suzuki misplayed it as it had some sideways English on it and it bounced right by him, ultimately resulting in a 2-run triple thanks to the “well the fielder never actually touched the ball so it’s not an error” ruling.

Two innings later Kyle Farmer wasn’t leaving anything up to an official scorer as he took the 1st pitch he saw in the 3rd inning from Wade Miley and put it into the seats to make it a 3-1 game. That was the last hit that Cincinnati had until the top of the 9th inning when Spencer Steer line a 1-out double into the left field corner. Aristides Aquino followed up with an infield single to put two men on, but back-to-back strikeouts ended the game.

The Pitching

Chicago allowed two runs in the top of the 1st, but they got one of them back when Ian Happ continued his demolition of Reds pitching with a solo home run. In the 4th inning Justin Dunn ran into some trouble as he walked back-to-back hitters, but he buckled down and got Yan Gomes to ground into a double play to end the threat.

Things didn’t go as well in the bottom of the 5th inning. Dunn walked Alfonso Rivas to start the inning and then with two outs it was Seiya Suzuki hitting a game-tying 2-run home run. That would be the final pitch by Dunn on the day, giving way to Ian Gibaut. He walked Ian Happ after entering the game but got a ground out to end the inning. Nico Hoerner would single to lead off the 6th inning against Gibaut and that hit would end his night as David Bell opted to go to Reiver Sanmartin. He walked the first batter he faced and then saw a sacrifice bunt move both runners up. After a fly out to Aristides Aquino it was another trip to the mound for Bell for a pitching change.

This time it was Fernando Cruz who came on and things got away from him a little bit as he walked the first batter he saw to load the bases. Nick Madrigal then followed up with a 2-run single that put the Cubs up 5-3. Another walk loaded the bases again, prompting a visit from pitching coach Derek Johnson. Whatever he said worked as Cruz struck out Ian Happ to end the inning.

Art Warren came out to pitch the bottom of the 7th inning and he immediately got himself into a jam by allowing a leadoff single and then hitting the next batter. Warren retired the next two batters, but then walked P.J. Higgins to load the bases. Christopher Morel then singled on the first pitch he saw on a blooper into shallow left to bring in two runs and make it a 7-3 game. He then walked the next batter to load the bases and that led to a visit from the pitching coach. This time the words from Derek Johnson didn’t work as Warren walked in a run to make it 8-3 and then David Bell walked to the mound make a pitching change and call on Hunter Strickland with two outs and the bases loaded and Ian Happ due up. The Reds killer didn’t get it done this time as Strickland struck him out to end the inning. Strickland returned for the 8th and gave up a run that made it 9-3.

Notes Worth Noting

David Bell was thrown out in the top of the 9th inning with two outs and a 1-2 count on Jose Barrero after Barrero took a called strike that appeared to be out of the strikezone.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Chicago Cubs

Wednesday September 7th, 7:40pm ET

Mike Minor (3-10, 5.98 ERA) vs. Javier Assad (0-0, 0.90 ERA)

64 Responses

  1. Votto4life

    I am not a big fan of David Bell, but you could bring back John McGraw, Connie Mack or Sparky Anderson, no manager is going to win with this roster.

    The most astonishing thing to me is there are four of five teams that are actually worse.

    • LDS

      @V4L, you and others keep saying that and certainly ell never know, but I’d bet dollars to donuts, that those guys would have a better record with this roster than Bell. Pinella, any manager that’s willing to hold folks accountable. The inability to run the bases, advance the runner, etc, etc would be dealt with. Bell doesn’t . But he’s good at excuses.

      • Votto4life

        I thought David Bell should have been replaced after the 3-22 start. I would replace him and the entire coaching staff.

        I just think that here on RLN we over analyze things. Sometimes we don’t see the forest for the trees. I mean the Reds may be 27 games under .500 simply because they are not very talented.

      • burtgummer01

        You have this personal thing against Bell and no one should take anything you say seriously

      • TR

        The 3-22 start for this season would have caused major changes in any other ML team. The lack of organizational change that set the course for this season meant, to me, that the principal ownership of the Red’s just didn’t care.

      • burtgummer01

        Honestly the last 2 off seasons showed how much they care

      • LDS

        No Burt, it’s not personal. It’s experience managing high performing, successful teams in the real world. And firing those who don’t deliver. Simple as that. Results matter.

      • Votto4life

        TR that’s precisely my point. I don’t care who the manager is, 3-22 should have led to a complete overhaul of the management team. Aaa you point out, it would have for any other organization. I remember waiting the whole off day, following that disastrous streak, for the Reds to announce Bell’s replacement. When it didn’t happen it just proved ownership didn’t care.

        As Burtgummer points out, it shouldn’t have been a surprise, after the past two off-seasons. Still, I expected them to make the move for PR purposes if nothing else. It just goes to show they don’t even care what the fans think.

        The problem with Phil’s comments is he didn’t just misspeak. He merely express ownership’s true feelings regarding their customers.

        I don’t understand how people can continue to give the Castellinis the benefit of the doubt. Thinking the Reds are going to sign a bunch of free agents once Votto’s and Moose’s
        contracts come off the books in two years, is absolute pure fantasy.

      • Old-school

        The Athletic has a round table NL central forum from its beat writers for each team and one of the questions was is your FO/Manager in trouble . C Trent wrote that Bell signed a 2 year deal and the Reds losses arent because of the manager, the losses were the plan. The reds were designed to be bad and lose and slash budget and Krall has done exactly what ownership has asked and is lauded around baseball for his deadline deals. C Trent says scapegoating Krall would be a shame.

        I think Bell stays for 1 very simple reason. Ownership needs someone to deflect criticism and Bell certainly does that. If Bell or Krall were fired, where would 100% of the criticism go? Ownership. Not happening.

      • TR

        Votto4life: We agree as the 2022 season is slowly being played out. When May rolled around with the disastrous start and no change was made, at least a new manager, all I could say to myself was ‘Ho Hum.’ It was evident that Phil Castellini’s comment on Opening Day, of all days in Redsland, was the truth, like it or not.

    • greenmtred

      We will never know, certainly, but the generally acclaimed great managers had bad records with bad rosters.

      • Old-school

        @GMR, I heard the great Sparky Anderson lost 100 games once with the Tigers?

      • greenmtred

        103 in ’88. can happen yo the best of them, and i know that i’ve made the point too often.

      • Votti4

        I think you are thinking of 1989, regardless Sparky had won three world championships by that time, including one in Detroit, so he deserved the benefit of the doubt. If David Bell had a couple World Series rings, I would be inclined to give him a little more rope, however, even then he would be on a short leash by this point.

        I think we all know why David Bell is still employed, buddy bell is a friend of the Castellini’s and he has a contract.

        But to your point, this team is historically bad and a different manager is going to change the results all that much.

        I mean, take a step back, we are arguing over who has more potential, Aquino, Fraley or Stuart Fairchild??

        I mean come on, none of these players or a half dozen others, I could name on this team, would be even worthy of discussion on a half way competitive team.

      • Votto4life

        I think you are thinking of 1989, regardless Sparky had won three world championships by that time, including one in Detroit, so he deserved the benefit of the doubt. If David Bell had a couple World Series rings, I would be inclined to give him a little more rope, however, even then he would be on a short leash by this point.

        I think we all know why David Bell is still employed, buddy bell is a friend of the Castellini’s and he has a contract.

        But to your point, this team is historically bad and a different manager is going to change the results all that much.

        I mean, take a step back, we are arguing over who has more potential, Aquino, Fraley or Stuart Fairchild??

        I mean come on, none of these players or a half dozen others, I could name on this team, would be even worthy of discussion on a half way competitive team.

      • greenmtred

        i stand corrected. but the point remains: even a good manager can’t overcome an over-matched roster. sparky engenders no doubt for me. i believe he was a good manager, but as he himself pointed out, those reds teams were so good that he had to little but fill out the lineup card.

      • Optimist

        Votto4Life is getting to the point – namely that a lot, a real lot, of the discussion here for a long time has been about who should be the last 2 offensive players on the 26 man roster. Perhaps even the last field player to make the roster. Fraley/Friedl/Fairchild/Aquino is a 5th outfielder presently, perhaps a 4th if one develops.

        Even Senzel has developed into a 3rd, really 4th outfielder.

        Most of that is certainly on the player, but the portion which is not really exposes the ownership and management fiasco we’re living with.

        Good ownership can get a .500 club out of marginal talents and a star or two. Excellent ownership can do a bit more. I cannot think of a WS winner with better than excellent ownership – anyone?

        The Reds are approaching the Pirates level.

  2. Doc4uk

    The absolute worse BP in baseball. Kuhnel, Strickland , and especially Warren must not be part of 2023 Reds

  3. Doc

    Another startling BP meltdown. Just uncanny the way it seems they are either all good or all bad in any particular game. We need a stopper in the BP, someone who can stop BP implosians.

    • Kevin H

      Reds have Diaz but he can’t pitch all the time. I realize you know that.

      I agree it is amazing how bullpen is on for days then like last night. Nothing

  4. Roger Garrett

    So Bell gets tossed down 6 with 2 outs in the ninth.Kind of late to be discussing balls and strikes.Hard to imagine he even knows about the strike zone cause his pitchers don’t

    • 2020ball

      Whats so wrong about sticking up for one of your players, especially one thats struggling, and especially especially one thats so young?

      Can we at least complain about stuff that matters? Or is actually true? No idea what you mean about the pitchers, that just sounds ridiculous.

      • JB

        Pitchers had 11 walks meaning they had no clue where the strike zone is. It’s not that difficult.

    • Mark Moore

      I’m glad he finally lost his cool enough to get tossed. Seems it was far too late. Plus given the Chumpires have zero accountability to improve their strike zone calling, arguing on that front is pretty pointless. You do it to fire up your team. That ship had already sailed.

  5. RedsFan11

    The sad state of the play in the MLB today… no parity, no “small Market” teams wanting to spend money, and the horrible money chasing policy to add 2 additional playoff teams… the league continues its free fall…

    There is about a month to go in the regular season (28 games) and outside the pathetic AL central the other 13 playoff teams have already been identified. The Brewers against Padres for final the Wild card is the only other open spot. The only divisional race truly up for grabs outside AL central is the NL East.

    More proof in my mind that the seasons are ridiculously too long especially if you are going to add more playoff teams.

    • Rednat

      good points RedsFan11. Also, I think there are just too many teams in the league right now. I mean what role do the Reds, Pirates, Royals play in the league at this point? how are the small market teams suppose to compete with guys like Aquino and Barrero who barely make any contact? yet the commissioner’s office is talking about expanding? how out of touch can they be?

      • Kevin H

        Reds had a team built to win. 2020 was shortened season. They made playoffs. Then 2021 most everyone came back and if Krall and who ever else would of invested in a bullpen who knows. Instead they fell apart in September that year and Cardinals win 17 in a row.

        Now this season they literally tore down the team. We can say small market, but I will never believe that. 2022 to me was a year they could have won.. we will never know and here we are in September with a team that is not good. Not for a lack of trying

      • Luke J

        They had a team built to sneak into the wild card spot and get ousted in the first round of the playoffs in 2020 and 2021. Had everyone come back and they added some bullpen arms, they would have also been a wild card team with zero shot at a world series. If that’s winning to you, then I guess you wouldn’t like the rebuild. But that’s not winning to me. They need to completely rebuild to have any shot to compete with teams like the Dodgers.

      • Votto4life

        I don’t know a WC spot would look pretty good to me about now. At least, last year the team held my interest until September. Much of last season was pretty darn entertaining. This year,the season was over well before summer.

        So sign me up for a WC run every summer.

        I think it’s a big assumption that the Reds current course is going to led to anything better.

  6. Melvin

    Eleven walks….do we get free pizza for that? Just asking. 🙂

    • greenmtred

      it more likely means they couldn’t locate it or that it was inconsistent, wouldn’t you think

      just anchovies.

      • greenmtred

        2 comments lumped together. i don’t know why, and don’t care to find out. anchovies are for melvin’s funny comment.

  7. Kevin H

    Bell leads to to playoffs in 2020. Bell has team in position to be in playoffs in 2021. With a bullpen blowing at least 10 games before all star break last season.

    This season yes should of been let go after 3-22 start, but wasn’t and reds ended up playing 500 ball . Not sure now as I lost track after the trade deadline. Bell while drives me crazy with his managing style and some decisions. He hasn’t done bad in my opinion, look what he has had to work with. Especially the bullpen..

    I also believe player think too much and that leads to the mental errors people talk about.

  8. Indy Red Man


    Why shouldn’t the Reds be like everybody else I guess.

    Pitching? I’ve seen monkeys at the zoo throwing bodily waste at each other with better control then our bullpen.

    Hitting? I’m just so glad the Reds unleashed Jose Barrero’s mighty bat! And many wanted him to fully replace Farmer because Farmer isn’t in the Reds future. Well Barrero isn’t either. He’s so psyched out if the batting practice pitcher wore another teams jersey then he K versus him too. Worst Reds hitter I’ve ever seen.

    Good news is that its almost over

  9. Doc4uk

    Barrero should be demoted if for no other reason to regain some confidence. He has not been the same player since the hamate surgery and perhaps will never be the player he was expected to be. Even before he was brought up this time he was barely hitting over .200 in AAA.

    However the Reds have a multitude of potential SS in the minors and it is time to see what they can do.

    Christian Encanation-Strand seems like he deserves his shot and can play multiple positions. Steer has been a SS. Elly De La Cruz can play SS . At least give the fans some hope for 2023.

    And for sure DFA Moose, Strickland, and especially Warren. Demote Kuhnel and bring up some starters from AA and AAA who can pitch multiple innings like the Cubs Rookie did last night.

    The point is that Barrero has had his opportunity and has not risen to the occasion. Next man up .

    • Luke J

      I don’t understand this mindset. In baseball, 200 PA is virtually nothing. Julio Rodriguez was as bad as Barerro his first 200 PA this year and will be the ROY. The reality is, young guys often take a bit of time to make the adjustments to the major leagues. I’m not ready to give up on a guy who I’ve seen can hit and who plays elite defense at a premium defensive position so quickly. I think of all the hall of famers who if you were manager would never have gotten past their poor starts to their careers and we never would have gotten to see them turn into stars. If Barerro isn’t hitting by the all star break next year, you might have an argument. But not now.

      • Indy Red Man

        Was Julio Rodriguez hitting .203 at AAA with 2-3 Ks every night? And I mean every night! Like clockwork!

      • Hotto4Votto

        yep, no need to give up on him yet, as he’s hit in the past and has only stopped hitting after an injury to his wrist, which has been known to effect hitting. I agree, give him until mid-next year to get it going in the right direction.

      • Indy Red Man

        Julio Rodriguez had a Votto April, but had a .866 Ops in May. Not even close to Barrero level for 200 at-bats.

        Might as well compare Barrero to Arod or Cal Ripken next

      • Luke J

        Then let’s make a more apt comparison, shall we. How about we look at the first 483 at bats, spanning the first 2 seasons, of Mike Schmidt’s career. Hitting .200 and sent down to the minors. You can try to split hairs about comparisons all you want, but it doesn’t change the fact that 200 at bats is absolutely nothing to draw any lasting conclusions from about a player. Period.

      • PTBNL

        I’m with you Luke!

        May the force be with you…….. for speaking truth

      • Votto4life

        I would give Jose Barrero at least another full season before writing him off. He did break his hand a few months ago. If Nick Senzel and Aristides Aquino are still getting opportunities, than Jose Barrero deserves a little more time.

    • Rednat

      I’m Just not convinced the players you mentioned will be any better at hitting than Barrero. Got a feeling Barrero and Aquino are harbingers of players to come. all glove, little contact

      • Indy Red Man

        Spencer Steer has already walked as much as Barrero in a week.

        No, every Reds prospect will not hit like Barrero and Aquino. Thats so negative that makes me look like Mr Rogers Neighborhood

  10. Pablo

    Good thing Marty B. is retired so he didn’t have to call this dumpster fire.

  11. Old-school

    Nick Kirby pregame stats gave the lineup above/below league avg color chart and Aquino/Fairchild/and Barrero entered the game with 41%, 39% and 43% K rates. Sure enough they went a collective 1-10 with 7 K’s against flamethrower Wade Miley.

    Barrero’s K rate in his good 2021 AA/AAA season was 22%. I dont know what’s happened but the focus should be on getting pitchers to throw strikes and hitters to give good at bats. You cant coach plate discipline and the Reds need to identify hitters that possess that critical piece of a hit tool as K rates that high and walk rates that low will never lead to productive hitting at the MLB level. Even the unicorn himself Adam Dunn, never had a K rate over 30% until after age 30 when he fell off the map.

    Send Barrero back to AAA to focus on plate discipline and cutting down his K rate, elevating his BB rate and stringing together quality at bats.

    • Bob Purkey

      I am not a fan of Bell at all, but I don’t know how you are supposed to win games with those BP stiffs and a starting lineup with FOUR players hitting below the Mendoza Line and Two more hitting less than .250. Yikes!

      Heck, why not add former mayor Mark Mallory to the BP too? He couldn’t home plate either!

      • Chris Holbert

        His “guy” Zinter is the hitting coach. Make a change or settle for mediocrity or less

      • greenmtred

        silk purses and sow’s ears. a good hitting coach can help, but can’t perform magic.

      • Votto4life

        I agree Bob, just looking at the Reds line up is enough to explain the problem. Like you, If four guys in a line up is hitting below .200, I don’t need to see any advanced metrics to figure out what the problem is.

        David Bell may be an issue, but he is not the cause of the Red’s problems.

  12. Mark Moore

    Losses stink. Losses to the WLB’s and Stupid Cubs stink the worst.

    Back at it tonight.

  13. Steven Ross

    Chris Welch mentioned last night the Reds BP is 2nd to only KC in issuing walks. Therein lies one huge problem. Add the insane amount of injuries and I question whether the Reds system of pitching philosophy is flawed? Something is wrong.

    • Jim Walker

      IMO, yes something is wrong. Their relievers try to pitch like starters. First and foremost, relievers need to be able to spot and command a fastball for strikes. Too many of the Reds relievers depend on breaking pitches or trick pitches (splitters) for strikes instead.

      • Jim Walker

        Antone seems like a possible example. After his 1stTJ surgery, he came back throwing his fastball at a tad faster than 95 and certainly had command and control over it.

        Nevertheless, he continued to throw as many as one third of his pitches as full sliders despite also having an effective curve which is less stressful to throw than a slider that he was also throwing around a third of his pitches. That is a starter’s repertoire.

        Who’s say’ but if he had canned the slider except for rare special situations and relied on his fastball and curve, he might be pitching instead of reabbing today.

      • DX

        Do you think it is how they draft? They seem to draft high velocity guys. I read that some teams like the Guardians and Brewers tend to draft pitchers who throw strikes.

      • Jim Walker

        I do not know. But why draft high velocity guys but then have them throw as many or more sliders as fastballs?

        Welch and Brantley talk a lot about the need to throw strikes and “trust their stuff”. As surely as I just typed that, they mean throw quality well located fastballs that are two way strikes but in areas of the zone which favor the pitcher versus trying to throw slider after slider that may or may not kiss the front corner at the knees before it dives down and/or wide of the plate.

    • Bob Purkey

      Just think how many walks would have been issued had Amir Garrett still been in the BP?

    • Old Big Ed

      The flaw in their pitching philosophy is that they stock their bullpen with a lot of poor-to-mediocre pitchers. You can’t philosophize Art Warren into a good pitcher.

      One thing the Reds are lucky at is bunching several relievers’ bad outings in the same game. It normally only takes 1 and sometimes 2 bad relief outings to blow a game, but the crafty Reds will get about 4-5 relievers to stink in the same game. So, sometimes their luck lines up, and the bullpen gives them 3 strong innings for a win.

      It is mind-boggling to me that the Reds are 2 games ahead of the Yankees since June 29.

      • Jim Walker

        Agree you can’t philosophize Warren into a good pitcher; but, he’d likely be markedly better if he wasn’t trying to throw sliders nearly 60% of the time when he has a 93-95mph fastball.

  14. DataDumpster

    In 2020, David Bell’s Reds rallied a bit to squeak into the playoffs with a 31-29 mark before setting a record in futility by being held scoreless for 22 innings in the WC. In 2021, at this point of the season, the Reds were 71-61 and in a strong position for another playoff berth. Then, 7 straight series were lost and the Reds gave us a preview of this season by winning 40% of their remaining games. This year, after another record in futility with the 3-22 start, the team has become fairly resilient losing just 7 more games to the .500 mark. With 3/4 of the roster facing early retirement or a minor league continuance at best, some good survival skills lifted up the team at opportune times.
    Can they continue that after this horrid game or is this the start of the 3rd season ending swoon that could reach the depths of the dismal 2015 season at 64-98?
    A finish like last year or the same .400 record for all of this year would “accomplish” just that.

  15. Old-school

    EDLC player of the month in the Southern League.
    Interesting to see where this young phenom ends up in the off-season prospect rankings. I think top 5.