Graham Ashcraft was dominant on Wednesday night in Goodyear. The right-handed starting pitcher allowed one hit, struck out 10 batters, walked no one, and had eight ground outs in 6.0 shutout innings as the Cincinnati Reds defeated the San Diego Padres 4-1 under the lights.

San Diego Padres (11-13)
1 3 1
Cincinnati Reds (13-11-1) 4 9 0
W: Ashcraft L: Lugo SV: Farmer
Box Score | Game Thread

The Highlights

Graham Ashcraft struck out the side in the top of the 1st inning. Joey Votto got things started in the bottom half, doubling with one out and coming around to score on a single into right field by Tyler Stephenson to put the Reds up 1-0. In the top of the 2nd inning Jose Azocar lined a single into left field in what would turn out to be the only hit that San Diego would get against Ashcraft on the day.

The bottom of the 2nd inning saw Cincinnati put up another run as Spencer Steer walked, moved up to second on a single by Curt Casali, and then later he would steal home on a double steal when the throw went to second base and he beat the throw back to the plate.

Graham Ashcraft continued to dominate on the mound, and in the 5th inning his offense got back to work to give him more runs to work with. Will Benson led off with a double and he moved up to third base when Jonathan India laid down a bunt single. Benson scored on a ground out to make it 3-0. In the top of the 6th Ashcraft finished out his day by picking up two more strikeouts, giving him 10 on the night. Cincinnati added another run in the bottom of the inning when TJ Friedl singled on a bunt, moved up a base when Kevin Newman walked, then both moved up on a double steal, and then Curt Casali drove in the 4th run for the Reds with a sacrifice fly.

The 7th inning saw Nick Senzel take over in center and Hunter Strickland take over on the mound. Strickland tossed a perfect inning to keep the shutout going. Reiver Sanmartin came out for the 8th inning and gave up a leadoff double to David Dahl, who would score the only Padres run of the game on a Brett Sullivan single later in the inning. Senzel, who entered the game an inning earlier, wound up on second base in the bottom of the 8th after Jakob Marsee flubbed a fly ball. Buck Farmer would come into the game in the 9th and made easy work, striking out the side to seal the victory.

Thanks in part to Graham Ashcraft’s utter dominance, as well as a little help from the pitch clock, the game lasted one hour and 52 minutes.

Thursday’s Game

Cincinnati will have another night game on Thursday as they host the Seattle Mariners. Brandon Williamson will take the mound against his former organization with first pitching scheduled at 9:05pm ET.

97 Responses

  1. Melvin

    Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft – All three are potential future aces. That’s amazing to have three young guys like that.

    • MK

      Clock is ticking with 5 year windows, as theYoung three all become Free Agents at the same time.

      • Melvin

        Yeah I know. Just a matter of whether or not these crazy owners have enough brains to build around them and take advantage. Do it or sell the team….SOON. Hint to Big Bob & Son: It will cost money. $

      • MBS

        I think the Reds still have Ashcraft for 6 years of control. He came up a bit later in the season.

      • Bdh

        It’s 6 with Ashcraft but why are we already talking about their windows like we’re about to lose them 1 year in? So much can and will happen in that timeframe. 5 years ago Lodolo and Ashcraft weren’t even drafted yet!

        If they continue progressing then the reds should buy out their arbitration years and try to get their first few years of free agency included like they did with Cueto the first time. That would keep them Reds into the 2030s and into their 30s. After that I wouldn’t extend them further. Too much risk spending big money on pitching after that age

      • Melvin

        @Bdh If Big Bob & Son are still around and you can talk them into extending “The Big Three ” I’m all for it. As you said a lot can happen in five years.

      • Bdh

        @Melvin – I’m sure they will extend some if not all of the 3. They extended Votto to the largest contract handed out by a NL Central team still to this day while also extending Phillips, Bruce, + Cueto, paying Arroyo + Rolen, and signing Ludwick (largest FA contract for Cincinnati at the time) + Chapman. No reason to think it won’t happen again.

        I hope they don’t hold onto players for too long because that’s what got them into this mess to begin with. Poor returns in 2014-15 kept the team down until they tried to buy their way out at the worst time possible (start of the pandemic). Krall is handling it how it should have been done in 2014

      • Melvin

        @Bdh Hope you’re right. Don’t want to discourage your optimism. Keep it up.

  2. Rcsodak

    Meh…..just in time for another 10 yr rebuild.

  3. MBS

    I love the fast pace of these games. It will be interesting to see how it plays out in the regular season.

    The big 3 are looking good, now let’s see if Williamson can join them. Big game for Williamson tomorrow. I wonder how much of a chance Overton still has. Cessa is looking like a lock to me.

  4. Matt McWax

    Some fierce breaking balls, most were well located, most were thrown hard. The ones with depth were untouchable, and probably would have put most of the better hitters down too.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      We didn’t need analytics, a Jugs gun or spin rate calibration to see that Ashcraft was absolutely dominant. His pitches had movement within the strike zone, and the San Diego lineup — reserves, but still mostly players with big-league experience — was helpless. Good luck trying to hit that breaking ball he was throwing.

  5. Votto4life

    Apparently, the Reds have decided not to rush their most prized prospects. Most of whom haven’t played above AA. This is a wise decision by the front office.

    The problem is, the front made no real effort yo improve the major league roster over the offseason. For a team that is coming off a 100 loss season is unforgivable.

    Had the Reds spent a little more money on another Starting pitcher and a couple of relievers, I think fans would be more positive about the 2023 season. The Reds front office could have accomplished that and still had a payroll around $80 Million.

    Current ownership is not merely indifferent towards the fan base, but at times, are seemingly antagonistic towards it.

    In the long run, it doesn’t really matter if Jose Barrero or Kevin Newman starts at short or whether the team carries two catchers or three. This team will not improve until the Castellinis are no longer calling the shots.

    The day that the Castellinis sell this team will be the single greatest day in franchise history.

    • Melvin

      “Current ownership is not merely indifferent towards the fan base, but at times, are seemingly antagonistic towards it.”

      I agree.

      • Alex Reds

        I disagree. The ownership wants to win badly. They finally learned that you can’t buy yourself a championship contending team when you aren’t anywhere near as rich as the other owners. It took them failing badly with big contracts not providing value from Akiyama to Moose and get those bad contracts off the books. The Votto contract paid for itself in prior years, but is most likely overpaid for current expected performance and injuries at this age. All these contracts were always coming due around 2022 and 2023, and it’s hampered this year and last. The Reds have been making the right moves to position themselves for a big year starting in 2024 onwards. Krall has worked some serious magic.

      • Doug Gray

        Alex, the Reds have signed two big contracts, ever. Joey Votto. Homer Bailey. That’s it. The Moustakas contract was nowhere near big. The Akiyama contract was what teams were paying for good, but not great middle relievers.

    • Greenfield Red

      If this is the conversation 1 year from now, I will agree. Being terrible in 2022 and 2023 were baked in by decisions made starting in 2014. I see no reason to throw good money after bad. 40 mil wasted on 23.

      Just my opinion.

      • Alex Reds

        Totally agree! Let’s get the prospects ready and have fun this year, then let’s spend next year when the payroll frees up. Any extra money spent this year wasnt going to be enough unless the owners were bringing $80M of their own cash to the table.

      • DaveCT

        A strange but telling parallel to misnomer ‘major league ready …’

      • Greenfield Red

        You got it DaveCT. Major League ready is the kiss of death. Teams don’t trade guys they truly believe in. Makes me skeptical of Steer and CES. If they were difference makers, Minny wouldn’t have traded them. It makes too much sense to keep truly good players with 6 or more years of cost control.

    • TR

      When the Castellini ownership cashes in, it will be, at least, one of the big days in the Red’s long history.

    • Redsvol

      Don’t disagree but they couldn’t have done this and stay at 80$m. Current opening day payroll is $78.5M. Adding any starter or relievers of significance would have cost another 20$M. Mediocre starters we’re getting 10$M and relievers 3-5$M in free agency this winter.

      This year is all about the youngsters riding the I-71 shuttle up from Louisville. There will be lots of turnover this year from June on. Will be fun to see who seizes there opportunity.

    • BK

      I will add that there were as many calls to add position players as there were for pitching. Glad we didn’t block prospects with additional position players. The bullpen should add some quality arms from the IL within a couple of weeks.

      We also know that much of their RSN revenue is in jeopardy. I’m glad they appear to have accounted for that possibility and not kicked that can down the road.

  6. David

    Krooshal update!

    Chad Pinder was 0 for 1, with a strikeout. Now batting 0.111 for the Spring.

    Benson is hitting 0.341 this Spring.

    Which one will make the Opening day roster?

    • Melvin

      I know that’s a rhetorical more or less but I’ll answer it anyway. I kind of like Benson. 🙂 Who they choose is, well, we can only hope.

  7. Redhaze

    Is it true that Ashcraft did not throw a ball in last night’s start?

    • Old Big Ed

      No. The spring training box scores are screwy, and the “NP” shows only the number of strikes thrown. (The MLB app doesn’t even show NP any more, but I think some box scores still do.) I wondered the same thing from a few years back, and had it explained to me.

      Don’t ask me why they do it that way. Seems silly.

      • Doug Gray

        So when there’s no pitch tracking being done (which is the case in all but one ballpark in Arizona) the only pitches that are “counted” are 3 strikes in a strikeout (no matter how many pitches took place in the at-bat), the 4 balls in a walk (no matter how many pitches took place in the at-bat), any ball in play (which counts for 1 pitch – a strike – no matter how many pitches are thrown in that at-bat), and hit batters (which again, is just 1 pitch no matter how many are thrown in that at-bat).

        It is silly, but it’s just a spring training thing in Arizona now.

  8. JB WV

    Ashcraft benefits from the pitch clock. He gets in a quick rhythm and batters can’t step out. Looks like he’s thoroughly enjoying it.

    • Greenfield Red

      Good point. Tom Browning would have liked it too.

  9. Old Big Ed

    Ashcraft wasn’t facing the Padres A-team last night. Soto, Machado, Tatis and others were missing. But still, he was very strong.

    The Reds starting pitching is excellent. I know that people will pick on the 4th and 5th starter, but almost every team is running out an iffy 5th starter, including specifically the Yankees, whose staff is in disarray due to injuries.

    • Redsvol

      Ha! Good point OBE. We could probably trade Luis Cessa to them for a decent prospect right now. That team will be hunting a starter if they get off to a bad start.

  10. Redsvol

    Man TJ friedl gets no love on this board. All he does is get on base and score runs. I hope he can stay healthy.

    Benson is getting lots of at bats and in multiple positions. I think he has made the roster.

    I do think steer us a little vulnerable. Bad defense and striking out too often. He needs to pick it up.

    • Tomn

      Agreed about Friedl. Acc to reports Steer is working hard on his D. He won’t be Brooks Robinson anytime soon but I bet he will be ok.

      • Tomn

        And there is McLain awaiting at aaa. He can play 3b, ss, 2b. I know, he’s a rook, but I’m looking forward to the day he’s a Red. So Steer needs to produce.

      • Harry Stoner

        On Bell’s Reds, production like a .577 BA and leading your team in extra base hits pales in comparison to giving up a string of taters or a .107 BA avg.

        The last thing they need to do is put too much pressure on a young guy with the promise of Steer.

        Competition between Steer and McLain is a plus, but McLain will idle indeterminately in Louisville along with CES.

        Steer doesn’t need The Chad breathing down his neck, too.

      • Doc

        Brooks Robinson wasn’t Brooks Robinson in his rookie year either. Give me a hard worker who can already hit over a defender who can’t hit any time. Defense is easier to learn for a hard worker than is hitting. Both possible, but I’ll take a hitter first if he shows he is willing to work hard on defense, especially if he has shown that work attitude during his climb through the minors.

    • Luke J

      He gets love from me. One of my favorite Reds. My daughter took his rookie card to a game last year. TJ was standing by the stands talking to his family before the game. There was a group of kids standing nearby just hounding him for autographs. You could tell it was annoying him as he tried to talk to his family and they were total brats. My daughter stood at a distance patiently with her baseball card and pen in hand. He noticed her and signed her card for her to reward her good behavior. Then finished talking to his family and left those annoying brats standing there with nothing. I loved it! And it was an unforgettable moment for my daughter. TJ made me one of his biggest fans that day (and I already loved his game).

    • LDS

      You guys do realize that Steer and Pinder have struck out the same number of times (although Steer has 2 fewer ABs) and that Steer’s batting average is higher than Pinder’s OPS. Further, Steer has twice as many RBIs as Pinder has hits. I’m not worried about his SO rate. He’s young and has an upsdie. If not him, who starts at 3rd? Certainly, neither Pinder nor Senzel are likely to produce any better.

      • Harry Stoner

        Whoa, LDS, you don’t want to start sounding like Green Mountain with those rhetorical questions.

        Of course, Bell has an alternative to Steer ready and waiting.

        Production from The Chad will not be an important factor in making such decision.

      • LDS

        I’m sorry Harry, I slipped up. Though I find it humorous that so many people say things like the last man on the bench doesn’t matter, person X strikes out too much, etc. without looking at how Bell manages, how often their preferred starter strikes out, etc. Everyone wants to embrace “analytics” until they don’t. I stick to the basics like BA, OBS, SLG, pct (OPS being a convenient shorthand). Votto is a perfect example. Yes, he has a chance to be a HoF’er. Yes, he’s a Reds’ legend. But even in his bounce back year in 2021, he couldn’t hit lefties and thus should be platooned. Oh well, so it goes.

      • Bdh

        LDS – baseball reference has Votto with a .916 OPS vs Left Handed starting pitchers in 2021.

      • LDS

        Come on Green, let’s not be bandying that fact around. We both have reputations and roles to maintain. Neither enhanced by agreement.

      • LDS

        @BDH, no, Baseball Reference shows Votto with .702 OPS vs LH in 2021. He hit .215, OBP .313, and SLG at .389, leading to the .702. The .916 OPS was against LH starting pitchers, not LH pitchers generally. Relievers count also.

      • Bdh

        @LDS – per baseball reference “vs Starter batting splits are for the entire game when the starter was LH or RH. These splits include any subsequent plate appearances against a reliever regardless of their throwing hand.”

        In 2021 Votto slashed the following when a left handed pitcher started the game (when you’re suggesting a platoon should’ve been used) .269/.395/.521 (.916)

      • LDS

        @BDH, exactly when a LH starts regardless of the handedness of the reliever. That’s not the same as how he hit when the pitcher was LH. He didn’t.

      • Bdh

        You don’t platoon a player because of how he hits vs relievers.

        Pretty sure you’re not knowing what you’re talking about here so I’ll leave it be.

      • LDS

        Haha, that’s certainly true of one of us.

      • greenmtred

        But still, doesn’t our duty to show that co-operation is at least vaguely possible override our roles and reputations?

      • LDS

        Perhaps @Green, perhaps, let’s see how the season unfolds

    • MBS

      “ Benson is getting lots of at bats and in multiple positions. I think he has made the roster.”

      Krall basically said as much last night. He ran through like 6 names of young MLB players India, Stephenson, I think Barrero, and Steer, but he also definitely said Friedl and Benson. Then said we don’t only have exciting prospects in the minors, but we also have exciting young players on the MLB level.

      I don’t see any other way to take that statement other than Benson and Friedl are in.

      • BK

        Yep, that’s how I took what Krall said, too.

    • BK

      I expect Friedl to get a lot of playing time. His bunting will be a key to his success. Benson looks good, too.

      I’m not tracking a problem with Steer’s K rate–especially as he is still a rookie. He’s very close to his rates from last season and is right at a 2-to-1 K to BB rate, just like last year. How does a 308/400/513 slash make one vulnerable? As for his defense, here’s the scouting report from the guy who knows Red’s prospects the best, “Defense | He’s a solid-average fielder who can handle multiple spots on the infield.” We should exercise caution at reading too much into all ST stats, including defensive ones.

      • JB

        Because they have to bash somebody and hope he (Steer) does bad in order to get McLain in the lineup. Who(McLain) we don’t know if he can hit big league pitching. Not like he lit it up last year in AA.

    • DW

      Agreed. Friedl should be in the everyday lineup in either LF or CF.

    • Hotto4Votto

      I’m a big Friedl fan. It’s been a lot of fun following him from undrafted FA to MLB.

  11. Mark Moore

    I see I missed a little action but not much game time after I shut it down last night. Happy to wake up and check in on a win. Real games coming at us in 3 … 2 … 1 …


    Bold prediction

    Unless a wave of injuries like they dealt with last season hits The 2023 reds will be the surprise of the MLB like the 2022 Orioles were.

    At the deadline They’ll be around .500, stick with the plan at the deadline trading Myers, etc. like the Orioles did with Mancini, bring up some superstar rookies who keep them in the wildcard race, and get the playoff window started next season

  13. SultanofSwaff

    Senzel on that wind aided ‘double’ was not running fluidly. There’s no way he can be considered ready to credibly play CF in the bigs.

    ST is almost over…..not a hint of extension talks with any of the young core. Gonna seem pretty foolish when 2 or 3 of them make the all-star team.

    Outside of Woodruff/Burnes, only Greene and Lodolo crack the top 70 starting pitchers for fantasy baseball. Not much pitching talent in the NL Central.

    Oh hey, Moustakas has a 1.061 OPS for the Rockies this spring.

    I like what I hear from Krall—seems to have a keen eye for talent. I wonder what he could do with a real payroll.

    I hate nepotism hires, but I’d make an exception for JR House.

    • Jim Walker

      So presuming Fairchild isn’t traded or lost to waivers in a DFA to outright attempt, what are the Reds going to do when Senzel and Fairchild are on display on the same field during Senzel’s “rehab” and Fairchild is playing rings around him?

      • Old-school


        I dont think Fairchild v Senzel is a zero sum game(see below on Senzels role/position change)

        Fraley is # 1 on depth chart in LF( against righties anyway)
        Myers is #1 on the RF depth chart
        Benson and Friedl are running neck and neck as CF1 and OF #4 with Benson a more true CF and Friedl capable of playing all 3. With myers sliding in to 1b occasionally , Friedl fraley and Benson will play a lot. Not to mention Mike Siani is a true cf so Fairchild is deeper in the OF queue and needs to establish his role as a true CF or corner OF or just 5th OG bench guy. Of course, if Fraley or Myers get hurt or Votto has a setback, all bets are off in the outfield calculus. The Reds seem to also value Ramos???I dont understand that with his profile at age 31 and never any mlb success but what do I know.

        At the end of the day, i do think with injuries, the long season, and roster cleared of the old guys blocking positions- there should be lots of opportunities for the bensons and steers and friedls and ultimately the Fairchilds and Senzels to state their case on the field.

    • Harry Stoner

      Moose hitting .385 for the Spring.

      Rockies getting a lot of value for their money, so far.

      Thinking of Castellini writing that paycheck every month is actually pretty funny.

      • Luke J

        My wife is a Rockies fan. She was upset when Moose started playing this spring. So I’ve been following him this spring. He started off hot, but has gone 0’fer the last few games. His average has dropped by like .300 over that span. I looked at her last night during the game (when he was 0-3) and said, “Moose has finally started to round into midseason form. He’s ready for the season now.”

      • Melvin

        Haha Yeah. Except he takes it out on us fans.

      • Old-school


        Went to a rockies game a few years back and sat out in RF

        Unreal atmosphere and views. Enjoyed it immensely

  14. Old-school

    Senzel is going to AAA and per Bell will play CF 2b and 3b. Yes hes been injured and yes disappointing but this is fairly big news. Hes switching roles officially and is no
    Longer exclusively an outfielder. It will be interesting to see how he adjusts. Every team needs a versatile plug and play guy during the 162 game season. . Perhaps he can reinvent himself and perhaps playing regularly but not every day might help him stay healthier. Or perhaps not.

    Its worth a shot.

    • Brian

      Gotta find away to get that Senzel 1000 AB’S and Negative 2 WAR into the lineup. He’s an obvious game changer during the occasional days that he’s healthy enough to play.

    • Brian

      Gotta find a way to get that Senzel 1000 AB’s and Negative 2 WAR into the lineup. He’s an obvious game changer during the occasional days that he’s healthy enough to play.

      • David

        He did play a lot last year and his numbers speak for themselves.
        Yet, with Arb rules such as they are…he got a raise and is making $ 2 Mil now.

        Perhaps he is healthy and has a real good year. I hope so, for his sake at least. He is not a bad guy, he has just been kind of unlucky.
        And….because he is getting paid $2 Mil, I am sure the word down from “Management” is that HE WILL PLAY.

    • David

      Senzel was regarded as an elite fielding 3rd basemen when he was drafted and progressed in the minors. And he is not a big, bulky dude, and can probably handle 2nd base.
      We should recall that it was asked if he could play SS, and the Reds’ “braintrust” said…Nah, bro. I think he took a few reps there and they didn’t think he could hack it.
      So I think that Nick could play all around the infield and do a credible job..mostly.
      He could play left or right, but he’s lost a few steps and I don’t think he can really play CF very well now.
      In a foot race, I think EDLC is probably the fastest guy in the system. People that are also close (that I can think of) are Mike Siani, Benson, Fairchild. Senzel is likely not in that group. I think Barrero probably is faster than Senzel, which is why David Bell wants to play switcheroo with Barrero in CF and SS.

    • James N. Walker Jr

      I wish Senzel peace and prosperity on and off the baseball field. This said I think the best for him and the Reds organization is that he has a strong showing on his rehab in Louisville and is moved to another organization.

      The Reds have any number of guys waiting and/ or growing into roles Senzel might fill with the Reds beyond 2023. These guys are younger and cheaper (for at least 3 more years) than Senzel who is at $2m with years of team control at arbitration rates remaining.

      Wick Terrell’s Reds Reporter post linked by Doug yesterday addresses the situation in detail.

      • Jim Walker

        And somehow wires got crossed and everyone gets a picture of Charlie Chihuahua that doesn’t include me 😉

      • Nick in NKY

        Seems like a very possible ending for the Senzel experiment in Cincy. I happen to think that the real trade bait this season is Myers. I’m sure they were hoping the same for Pinder, but early returns on his value don’t look so great. I suspect that after injuries and the hot stove portion of the year, there will be more space in the OF.

  15. Kevin H

    Just hope Tyler Stephenson can stay healthy this year. Last season was a nightmare. Same with Jonathan India.

    Senzel being healthy and staying healthy is key as well. Hopefully his swing change last year helps him and continues hitting the ball hard. I still believe he can be a 300 hitter as long as he can stay healthy. He like Stephenson can’t seem to stay injuring free.

    • Harry Stoner

      I’m all for keeping Senzel to 3B and 2B, where iirc he hit fairly well during his brief sojourn.

      Not diving after uncatchable balls in CF, crashing his toe into the wall or colliding with Fraley or The Chad will likely help keep Senzel on the field more often.

      Who gets off-loaded when he (eventually) gets called up?

      • Jim Walker

        Who can be optioned versus outrighted?? Last man in between Henry Ramos and Will Benson or else Spencer Steer, all of who appear to be optionable.
        (Yes, incredibly, Fangraphs seems to think Henry Ramos somehow has 3 options which would mean, if correct, he was never on an MLB 40 man roster until brought by Arizona in September of 2021 and then nontendered or outrighted prior to 2022).

        Presuming they put Pinder on the 40 man to open the season, I don’t see them eating that contract to have him on ice at AAA (and I don’t think he would decline an outright and thus forfeit the contract money a month or so into the season). Besides Pinder is this year’s “turn a dumpster dive into a prospect” poster child. I.E. bring a journeyman in at around a $1m per year rate, hope he has a good season so you can pay him just 4 months then flip him for a decent prospect.

  16. old-school

    ESPN has its top 100 MLB player rankings. Reds not a 1 .( Castillo #37)
    Many however are old and past their prime. Stay the course, clear payroll, develop a pipeline of talent and in 2 years the hope would be the Reds talent is there.

    • greenmtred

      Agree, Old-School. I’m even, for now, looking forward to this season. The big three, for one reason, but also the possibility/likelihood that some of the talent in the minors will be called up later.

      • Old-school


        I am too.

        Hope your snow melted

        Im in glorious florida where its sunshine and blue skies and dare I say..,time for baseball

      • greenmtred

        Melting but not melted, Old-School. More to come in the next few days. Still getting around in the woods on snowshoes. Enjoy the sun I expect I’ll see it one of these days.

      • Old-school

        You are clearly a patient soul.
        Im trying. Reds rebuild doesnt help matters but I am staying positive till Memorial day and then re-evaluate!

  17. MBS

    I’ve been thinking about the outfield, and I’m pretty happy with our budget OF. They should all get good playing time, especially when you consider Myers might get some 1B time, and we have a DH spot that could feature an outfielder from time to time.

    Myers 7 of 9 games in RF, 1 @ 1B, 1 off (144 Games)
    Fraley 7 of 9 games in LF, 1 @ DH, 1 off (144 Games)
    Benson 7 of 9 Games in CF, 2 off (126 Games)
    Friedl 2 RF, 2 LF, 2 CF, 1 DH 2 off (126 Games)

    Votto 6 of 9 games @ 2B, 1 @ DH, 1 off (126 Games)
    India 8 of 9 games @ 2B, 1 off (144 Games)
    Barrero 8 of 9 games @ SS, 1 off (144 Games)
    Steer 8 of 9 games @ 3B 1 off (144 Games)
    Newman 1 @ SS, 1 @ 2B, 1 @ 3B, 3 @ DH, 3 off (108 Games)

    Stephenson 4 of 9 @ C, 3 DH, 2 1B 0 off ( 162 Games)
    Casali 3 of 9 @ C, 6 off (54 Games)
    Maile 2 of 9 @ C, 6 off (36 Games)

    Obviously there are match ups, hot streaks, and injuries that will occur, but I just want to get the young people every opportunity to play, and I’m not worried about Casali, Maile, or the 13th man getting a lot of reps. Votto also deserves to get the opportunity to finish his career as an everyday player, until he doesn’t.

    • MBS

      BTW I think Fraley has 2 HR’s against LHP this spring. I think he should be given the opportunity to face more LHP to see if he can grow as a hitter, Benson maybe should be coddled a bit more until he establishes himself a little more, and gets more confidence. Friedl should also get the AB’s against LHP.

      • David

        There is nothing wrong with any of your reasoning.

        However, I think that the main people that will DH (precluding someone getting hurt so they can’t play in the field but can hit), will be Joey Votto, Wil Myers and Tyler Stephenson. I honestly don’t see the younger guys having a day at DH, while the older guys are out there.
        Joey is 39, and should get more “days off” now, and maybe a kind of Day Off will be to DH. I hope he hits well, he is starting to look OK as Spring Training winds down.
        Maybe Fraley, because he is no gazelle out there in the outfield, and if he gets really hot and Bell wants to keep him in the line-up everyday. I think Fraley is one guy that may surprise a lot of people with his stick this season.

        I agree with you about Friedl.
        I also think that Fraley should be given some AB’s against “journeyman” left handed pitchers, to find out what he can do.
        I would ABSOLUTELY keep Benson and try to get him 300-400 AB’s this year in CF or RF, in the majors. Don’t put him up against pitchers that he might be overmatched against…early in the year. Get his confidence up. This guy is, I think, a very talented athlete that the Guardians gave up on because of their numbers on the 40 – man, etc. He may just be a little slow to catch up to ML pitching, which is also something that has been said of Fraley.
        Benson is NOT Josh Hamilton, but he does remind me somewhat of that electric talent that Hamilton had.

      • Old-school

        Nice work MBS

        I like fraley as a good lefty hitter and in his prime OF. Id give Benson and Barrero and Steer latitude and lots of playing time
        Love myers and Friedl too. You need 4 Full time outfielders

        I also love making Senzel an occassional CF against lefties but also back in the dirt where he always belonged. Way better than Pham/moose/ Akiyama

      • Tom Diesman

        Regarding the comment above regarding Fraley’s speed, “Fraley, because he is no gazelle out there in the outfield”. Fraley is faster than perceived by most around here. The following is the the Baseball Savant baserunning sprint speed for the 2022 Reds that are above 27.0 ft/sec which is League Average.

        Rk. Player Sprint Speed (ft / sec)
        1 Fairchild, Stuart 29.0
        2 Aquino, Aristides 28.8
        3 Senzel, Nick 28.7
        4 Friedl, TJ 28.2
        5 Fraley, Jake 28.0
        6 Barrero, Jose 27.9
        7 India, Jonathan 27.7
        8 Almora Jr., Albert 27.6
        9 Steer, Spencer 27.4
        10 Reynolds, Matt 27.4

      • MBS

        @Tom, I agree with you, Fraley isn’t slow. The biggest problem I have with his defense is his arm. Both Fraley and Friedl have that same issue. Their weaker arms can be hidden in LF, but they both can’t inhabit that space at the same time. Friedl seems to be comfortable across the OF, and his bat in the lineup outweighs his lack of arm strength.

      • Tom Diesman

        Here’s few of the new players they’ve added who are above avg in running speed as well. Also, Vosler, Ramos, and Pinder are below avg runners.

        Benson, Will 29.2
        Solak, Nick 28.2
        Newman, Kevin 27.9

      • Melvin

        @MBS. I agree. Friedl and Fraley are both Left Fielders because of their arm strength. If I had to choose one it would be Friedl.

      • Tom Diesman

        Baseball Savant has arm strength data too.

        OF — average of top 10% of throws — minimum 50 throws to qualify

        League Average – 2022

        LF CF RF
        87.4 90.0 90.5

        Stuart Fairchild 88.0
        Jake Fraley 87.9
        Nick Senzel 86.7
        TJ Friedl 85.3

      • Melvin

        @Tom D. I thought Senzel had a stronger arm than that. So according to those stats all four of those guys belong in LF according to arm strength.

    • BK

      I think we’ll see David Bell execute something very similar to what you have laid out. It’s a good framework.

  18. eddiek957

    That was a fun game start at 9:05 over by 11 west coast trips may not be as tough for me this year. Liking the catchers compared to last year. I agree with the earlier comment about the reds not tending to their hundred loss ml roster. I feel that losing games at historical numbers should be unacceptable for our proud franchise