The Cincinnati Reds couldn’t get their offense going, again, as they lost their 4th straight game. Pittsburgh moved to 14-7 with their 4-2 win over Cincinnati, who remains in last place as they fell to 7-13 on the season.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (7-13) 2 5 1
Pittsburgh Pirates (14-7) 4 6 2
W: Keller (2-0) L: Law (0-3) SV: Bednar (7)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Not a lot happened in the first inning and a half, but in the bottom of the 2nd the Pirates offense did some damage with a little help from Graham Ashcraft. After Connor Joe singled, Ashcraft walked Jack Suwinski and then balked to move both runners up a base. Mark Mathias then drove both of them in on a single up the middle to put Pittsburgh up 2-0. The next two batters would strike out and end the inning.

Cincinnati wouldn’t get a baserunner until the 3rd inning when Spencer Steer was hit by a pitch. They would pick up their first hit in the 4th when Tyler Stephenson led off with a single. Jason Vosler would draw a 1-out walk and then Nick Senzel picked up an RBI with a single that plated Stephenson to cut the Pirates lead to 2-1.  Jose Barrero tied the game up with a sacrifice fly.

Graham Ashcraft got himself into trouble in the bottom of the 5th, handing out two walks but after a mound visit he struck out Andrew McCutchen to keep the game all tied up. That would be his final batter faced, finishing the day out with five innings of 2-run baseball.

Derek Law took over on the mound for the bottom of the 6th inning. He’d give up a 1-out single to Connor Joe, who moved up to second on a wild pitch and then over to third on a ground out. Law got a grounder to shortstop that should have ended the inning, but Jose Barrero bobbled it and his throw to first base couldn’t beat Mark Mathias. That allowed Joe to score and give the Pirates a 3-2 lead and keep the inning going. A walk followed to put two men on for Austin Hedges, who singled into left field but TJ Friedl came up firing home and his throw beat Mathias to the plate to end the inning.

Pittsburgh would add on in the bottom of the 7th when Andrew McCutchen walked with two outs and then Carlos Santana doubled off of Ian Gibaut with McCutchen scoring easily from first base to make it 4-2 for the Pirates. Gibaut walked the next batter and that was enough as David Bell went to the bullpen to bring in Reiver Sanmartin. The lefty needed six pitches but he struck out Jack Suwinski to end the inning and strand two men on base. He’s return for the bottom of the 8th and got the Pirates out in order. Cincinnati needed to double their run total in the top of the 9th to keep the game alive. They didn’t, going down in order to drop to 7-13 on the season.

Key Moment of the Game

Jose Barrero’s error in the bottom of the 6th inning that led to the Pirates scoring the go-ahead run.

Notes Worth Noting

Jason Vosler is 5-44 since April 7th (.144) with two walks and 16 strikeouts.

The Reds have scored five runs over their last four games.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Pittsburgh Pirates

Saturday April 22nd, 6:35pm ET

Luis Cessa (0-2, 13.50 ERA) vs Rich Hill (1-2, 5.57 ERA)

129 Responses

  1. Kevin H

    Barrero not the answer at SS. His error cost the Reds the game. On the other hand scoring 2 runs is not going to win many games

    • LDS

      Errors happen The issue is a general lack of hitting. Barrero isn’t the problem

    • LDS

      Barrero isn’t the issue. Errors happen. Not hitting is the issue

      • Jessecuster44

        With Barrero, errors happen frequently

      • DaveCT


        Derek Jeter made over 50 one season.

      • LDS

        Today was Barrero’s second error, giving him a .976 fld pct. Yes, higher would be better but he’s higher than Newman, Baez, Cruz, Adames, Swanson, Seager, and numerous other big name SS. The issue is that folks are looking for another Larkin or a Turner. As for hitting? At .224, yes you want more. But among SS, that’s ahead of Correa, Baez, Abrams, and others. His 9 rbis puts him 8th among SS, and tied for 2nd on the Reds. An AllStar? No, not at this point, but, based on the stats, far too soon to be writing him off.

      • BK

        I don’t get to say this often, but I agree with LDS!!!

      • LDS

        @BK, got to hate when that happens. Have faith, to orrow’s another day. I’ll be sure to toss you a softball.

      • 2020ball

        @BK, lol same. I too tend to notice when it happens haha

      • Redsvol

        Bingo! Not only not hitting but an extreme lack of extra base hits. Singles only many nights.

      • Old-school

        Young shortstops are going to make errors. I dont know if Barrero turns into a good MLB SS or not. O”Neil Cruz made his share of errors last year and some big issues with throws. EDLC did as well.Some of the great ones in their early years werent finished products either. Time will tell.

      • greenmtred

        I also agree with LDS. Errors are only one indicator of fielding ability, anyway, and the official scorer is making a judgment that can and does involve subjectivity. Davy Conception often had more errors than Larry Bowa, but which one do you want as your starting shortstop.

      • LDS

        @BK, @2020Ball, @Greenmtred, glad to see you guys coming around. And as 2020 states below, leave McLain in Louisville. He’s hitting in the .270s last I looked. I’ve expected last place all along, fighting for 4th isn’t worth it. Take the 100 and hire new managers

      • Kevin H

        So when Senzel makes a error or a player you don’t like then “his error cost reds the game” when Barrero makes a error its “oh we aren’t hitting” okay I go it.

        Just foe the record though his error did allow winning run to score. If he doesn’t make that error who knows.

      • LDS

        Clearly, the error led to the winning run but you don’t win many games scoring only 2runs. As for Senzel, it’s time to move on. He has 50% more PAs as Aquino had with less productivity. Punt.

      • Melvin

        “Davy Conception often had more errors than Larry Bowa, but which one do you want as your starting shortstop.”

        Concepcion had 30 Errors in 74 and 27 errors in 76. Both of those years he also received a Gold Glove.

        Larkin also had 19 Errors in in 87 and 29 errors in 88.

        SS is the hardest position to play. Errors are going to happen. I think we’re putting too much pressure on Barrero and expecting too much from him. Part of that is the other SS that are coming up soon. They will have errors too. Maybe even more. Just remember, if you don’t get to a ball you can’t get an error. Some guys who don’t have many errors have very little range and just make the basic plays.

      • Melvin

        “Take the 100 and hire new managers”

        How about shaking things up now, striving to win now, and not taking the 100? I’m sick and tired of losing. This team is potentially good enough that’s it’s certainly not a done deal that we end up at the bottom of the league. Krall said 100 losses is not acceptable. Prove it.

      • 2020ball

        The upside of that is the Reds finish in 4th, and if he struggles just look stupid and finish in 5th? Why bother? Leave him on a good track.

      • MFG

        Agree Beaufort Red, this team is not very competitive. They are fun to watch at time’s but also frustrating. I think it is time to bring up some of the youngsters to see what they can do. Vosler or Strand? I would prefer Strand and let him learn. McLain or Newman? same as above, if we are going to lose at least do it with .the youngsters so they learn

      • AMDG

        So, the Reds need to fix the defense at shortstop by benching Barrero for a guy in AAA (McLain) with more errors and a lower fielding %?

        For what it’s worth…
        Over his first 4 seasons Barrero has a 0.965 fielding % at SS.
        Over his first 4 seasons Larkin had a 0.964 fielding % at SS.

        Also, McLain is only hitting 0.276 in AAA (only 0.230 last year). So it’s not a career 0.247 minor league hitter stands to be a huge offensive upgrade.

      • Melvin

        “if we are going to lose at least do it with .the youngsters so they learn”

        McLain does not have to play SS right now. He can possibly switch back to the infield in the future. He already has two more hits today with another RBI. He’s polished enough to be ready for the big show. Will he struggle at times in the majors? Of course. All players do. If we wait until next year to bring him up he’ll still struggle at times. The sooner he gets experience the sooner he becomes a good ML player. He very well may help the team right now. I think the chances are good that he will help maybe even in intangible ways. Playing Newmans and Voslers is not encouraging. The ceiling has been reached with those type of guys. If we lose with the McLain type of players at least we know that we’re on the upswing and the future is bright. We may even get better sooner than we think. Only one way to find out.

    • jon

      2 errors this year.What are we going to do? Bring up an AAA SS with 3 errors and a .935 f%

    • SlippinJimmy

      Yes, enough Barrero already. How many more errors or boneheaded plays does he need to make to “prove himself?” He’s like Aquino–yes he has a strong arm and some good physical attributes, but at some the Reds need to realize this guy is more of a liability than anything.

      Yes, he has improved at the plate (from absolutely terrible), but his fielding (which was already spotty to begin with) has gotten worse.

      I’m all for giving guys time to work it out. Everyone is different and some take longer to pick things up. But even if he gets better, it would seem his ceiling is quite low. It takes more than physical attributes to excel in sports, no matter how flashy those occasional flashes may be.

  2. Melvin

    Sinking fast. On pace now for 57 wins. Question is will Krall at least show some guts making tough decisions or will another year of misery losing be okay? Do your job Mr. Krall. Shake things up. At least try.

    • Colorado Red

      Must disagree.
      We all knew the Reds would stink this year.
      We are a year or two away.
      Trading the future, for a few more wins is not a good idea.
      If you mean firing bell, then I agree with you.

      • Melvin

        I certainly don’t mean trading away the future for a few wins. There are all kinds of moves that can be made to show LOSING is not acceptable.

      • LDS

        You don’t have to trade the future. Trade Vosler, Newman, Myers, Fraley, Maile, pick’em. There are a bunch of active players on the 26 that don’t figure in the future.

    • 2020ball

      Before the year a lot of people will say they dont care how much they win they just want to see the rookies play, etc. etc. etc.

      Once the years underway, we’re talking about the pace they’re on and their record. Did any of us really think they were gonna win much? Was that even the point of this year to begin with?

      Still think they shouldve signed more pitching this offseason, I’m certain I’m not alone. I’d love to see them shake things up if it makes sense, but I’m skeptical Reds fans would like what they see if that’s what the FO ended up doing. I’d like to see them creatively add to their young players coming up if they can.

    • SlippinJimmy

      You should want to win as much as possible. Winning breeds winning.

      More wins = more butts in the seats = more merchandise sales = more income for the Reds = more “money available” to spend on winning. Wins also increase player and fan/city/community morale.

      Losing close games might bring a team together to a certain degree, but if you keep getting blown out and winning becomes futile, it’s only human nature to eventually lose interest. We all need that little bit of hope.

      • Doc

        Not if getting a couple more wins stunts chances for the next few years.

        And to LDS comment about whom to trade, do you really think that whole list traded as a group would bring you one competent major league player based on their records to date?

      • Melvin

        “Winning breeds winning.”

        I like it. I dare say the opposite is true too. We’ve been losing for so long I believe we Reds fans have been programmed to accept it. You don’t have to give up the future to try to win.

  3. old-school

    Bad stretch for the Reds. Lost combined series to Phils and series to Rays, Swept by the braves and now down 0-2 to the Pirates who are much improved.

    RLN yelling at each other because reds losing.

    Staying away from the David Bell issue but I know what side I am on with the season almost over before May 1. Can we all agree on a few Reds early observations?

    1.) Starting pitching after big 3 is terrible. Thats on Ownership
    2.) bullpen quality and depth is uncertain after Diaz/Young . Ownership
    3.) Offense isnt performing. India and Freidl and Steer are doing great. After that, it’s not great.
    4.) Vosler first base experiment and 3 catching experiment is failing. Need 2 better players
    5.) Shortstop is unanswered with no solution. At 7-14 and in last place….Kevin Newman isnt the answer.

    • SteveAreno

      Blaming Newman who hasn’t played in Pittsburgh? Hmm…

    • J

      I agree Newman isn’t “the answer,” but he’s got a better OPS than Myers, Vosler, and Barrero, almost exactly the same as Fraley, and pretty close to Stephenson. So, he’s not the answer, but he also isn’t the problem.

    • Greenfield Red

      The blame for 2022 and 2023 is not on ownership right now. The blame, all of it, is on the GMs who deferred part of Griffey’s money for two decades, the GM who signed Joey Votto to a 10 year contract when he was 29 years old, the GM who botched the 2015 trades with poor timing and even poorer choices of the kind of player to bring to Cincinnati in those trades, and finally to the GM who way over paid free agents to sign here in 2020. Present ownership was the ownership for most of these mistakes that were made by their baseball people whom they trusted.

      That’s why the Reds are so bad in 2022 and 2023.

      • Moon

        In about 5 years the Reds will be in a similar situation with Hunter Greene. He will be about 29 years old when his current contract ends. If he performs as expected he is likely to be in his prime and a star. So what do the Reds do? Another Griffey/Votto/Bailey etc. type of long term contract with a player likely going into decline that pushes the seams of the overall team payroll? Or do they trade him for high quality propects for the next rebuild?

      • Greenfield Red

        My opinion, no more 10 year contracts. They almost never work out for the team. In your scenario, if he will not sign a 5 year, at most, contract, then trade him when he has 1 to 2 years left on the contract he just signed unless they are in a pennant race, at which point, take your chances with him..

        I don’t understand why the minor league system is not winning much this year, but there is enough there to sustain a winner for years to come.

      • Hanawi

        Votto more than earned that contract over the last 10 years and is no longer among the highest paid the in the game. If the Reds can’t afford a contract like that, then they should fold the team.

      • CP

        Fans will just never understand the economics of modern baseball. The Votto deal was fine. The Griffey deal was fine. They decreased the margin of error for this poverty franchise, but the Reds ownership group would have messed it up anytime, because they can never stick with a plan and have no idea what they are doing.

      • Bill

        The people complaining about ten year contracts and deferred money would be complaining if they let players walk. If the Reds offer 10 years and everyone else is offering 10 they aren’t signing anyone. Then it is back to trading everyone after five years of control. Every team accepts the backend of the contracts will look bad. Every big star is signing 10+ year contracts, the Rodriguez contract the Mariners signed has the potential to something like 18 years with the options

      • Greenfield Red

        Don’t speak for me Bill. No more 10 year contracts for guys nearing 30. I have been consistent and will stay consistent. Very few 10 contracts to guys nearing 30 work out for the team… very few. If guys nearing 30 won’t take a 4 or 5 year contract then trade them or let them walk.

    • JayTheRed

      You forgot Stephanson is doing well too.

    • Doc

      Old school: how many wins does Greene have so far this season? How many quality starts does Greene have this season? How many time has Greene even made it to the fifth inning this season? In fact, Greene has not pitched deep enough into any statr so far to even qualify for a win.

      The Reds have not been playing with a rotation of Big 3. They are player with a rotation of POTENTIAL big 3. Ashcraft is the only one who has been solid in all three starts. Players that people like get a pass, players that people don’t like get blasted.

      Facts don’t matter. If they did, there would not have been a need for someone to bring up that Barrero’s fielding data are far better this year than McClain’s in order to counter with data someone’s wanting McClain called up because Barrero’s defense is ‘terrible’.

      • old-school

        Greene has been pretty good x for the OD start.. He went 6 strong innings and was in line for the win against Atlanta till Buck Farmer lost it 5-4. He had 3 good shutout innings going and would have had the win against the Rays were it not for being removed after taking a liner off after 3 innings of a Reds 8-1 win.

        6th in the NL in fWAR,
        4th in the NL in K/9 at12.7
        1st in the NL in average fastball velocity
        ERA is a respectable 4.24, with xFIP of 3.58

        Hes been pretty good except for opening Day- should have had 2 wins- bullpen blowup took one and freak injury took the other.

  4. SteveAreno

    Anemic bats with no extra base hits. Bednar does shut them all down so now he has 7 saves. Pirates are looking stronger than normal. We must have at least one of these games as a visitor. At first I was saying I’m happy to split the series. Now i’m praying for one game.

  5. Jedi Joey

    That helpless and depressing feeling from last season has hit again. I just don’t see how they will be much better and this looks like another long and painful Reds’ season.

    • JayTheRed

      I don’t know why people are surprised by this. The team only spent around 80 million or so. They didn’t really address the bullpen much Young and Law have been pretty good so far, but that’s about it. They should have signed at least one innings eater for around 5 to 8 million. You can’t win a ton of games when about half your lineup is players who mostly should be riding someone’s bench.

      • TR

        With only 60% of a starting five pitching staff and, at best, only 4 of 8 regulars producing offense to possibly win games, what can we expect? A month or so to go before young players should be starting for the Reds like EDLC, McClain, etc. Washed up players will not keep the Reds out of last place, so give youth a chance. There’s nothing to lose.

      • Jedi Joey

        Surprised? How could I be? I’ve been a fan of this teams since the 1980s. Disappointed and upset is how I feel. Forgive me for being a fan and having a sliver of hope this year that they may have had a shot to be decent or even more despite the odds. I get it! I should know better but I am only a fan after all.

    • Tar Heel Red

      What I find disappointing is the almost total lack of effort for the last 4/5 games. Players jogging to first base on ground balls (Friedl, India, Stephenson) and little effort on defense (Barrero). They didn’t start the season this way…I don’t why this is happening now.
      Another aspect that I find concerning is Stephenson’s offense has not been very good. He tries to hit everything to right field, rarely does he turn on a pitch and pull it. And his strike outs have been piling up at an alarming rate, especially called third strikes.

      • Jim Walker

        Strong suspicion here that Stephenson’s shoulder is nowhere near 100%. He and the team may have legitimately thought so in spring training but the wear and tear of playing virtually every day, especially catching half the time, is no doubt taking a toll.

  6. ryan

    Will Cessa be carrying a white flag to the mound?

  7. Klugo

    Feels like one of those infamous Dave Bell 9ers coming.

  8. J

    Five things I don’t love about this team:

    1) A Backup-backup catcher who seems to serve no purpose other than making sure the backup catcher gets plenty of rest. Bell’s ability to field the best possible team, or to make strategic moves during a game, is hampered every single day the Reds insist on continuing this nonsense.

    2) Team seems to have no idea when to attempt a steal. And Bell seems to be completely unaware that a hit-and-run even exists.

    3) Bell’s insistence on playing certain guys in certain situations based entirely on which hand they throw with or which side of the plate they hit from. Recent performance is of seemingly no interest to him whatsoever.

    4) Almost every hitter (with the exceptions of India and Friedl) seems to be guessing on almost every pitch, which leads to a lot of taken third strikes down the middle and strike outs on check swings.

    5) Relief pitchers seemingly unwilling to throw strikes for fear of allowing a ball to be put in play.

    There are plenty of others things I don’t love about this team, but there are only so many hours in the day.

    • BK

      I know I have made this point before, but I don’t fully agree with your assessment of the 3-catcher situation. First, you are mischaracterizing the three-catcher system’s purpose. The stated purpose was to get Stephenson’s bat in the lineup more. In that regard, it’s been successful as Stephenson has started each of the Red’s games.

      The Reds didn’t make any substitutions among the position players today. They didn’t yesterday either or the day before. With the DH, there’s little need to do what you suggest.

      Besides, WHO takes the roster spot? The problem is the team lacks depth. Maile has not hit at all, in his 16 PAs–not sure that even forms a small sample size, perhaps a minuscule sample size. Will Benson didn’t hit either. Senzel and Vosler are floundering. A strong argument could be made to replace nearly everyone on the Red’s bench–they are all slumping right now. It would be counterproductive to promote a prospect prematurely. I haven’t seen anyone on the waiver wire that would help either.

      Ideally, the Reds have enough bench that they don’t employ three catchers. Ideally, the top catcher isn’t coming off a season with multiple injuries, too. The Reds are just not ideal in many respects. I don’t see making a change at this point. In a couple of months, it will likely be appropriate to call up a prospect and bump a catcher. But at this point, Stephenson playing every day is a worthy objective, and having him on the bench in a quarter of the Reds games isn’t going to make them better now or in the future.

      • J

        I’m aware I’m misstating the purpose of the three catcher theory. It’s sarcasm. My point is that it’s a very dumb theory. Yes, Stephenson has started every game, and hooray for that, but it’s not *because* the Reds are carrying three catchers. He could just as easily have started every game with just one backup catcher. The only actual effect of having three catchers, to this point, has been that the backup catcher hasn’t had to play very much because there’s a backup-backup playing some of the games the backup could be playing. (Hence, my sarcastic quip about making sure the backup catcher is well rested.)

        It doesn’t really matter who they would replace the backup-backup with. Whoever it is, that person would be more helpful than a guy who is NEVER actually NEEDED for ANYTHING. Having a guy with speed would be useful as a pinch runner. Having a guy who’s good at playing outfield could be useful as a late-inning defensive replacement if the Reds ever have a lead. The other day they had to stick a backup catcher at third, where he’s never played, because he was the best option they had. Having a utility guy who can enter the game for India or Steer when the Reds are losing by 9 would be helpful. I’m not saying they’d be replacing the third catcher with a guy who’d hit .325 with 20 home runs, but when you’re a team that doesn’t have as much talent as other teams, you can’t afford to have a guy taking up a spot on the bench who increases your odds of winning each game by essentially zero. That’s exactly what the Reds are doing, and it isn’t helping Stephenson one iota. He could have played exactly as many games at DH and first as he’s played so far.

      • BK

        Realmuto is the most durable of the current crop of MLB catchers today. About 20 more starts than #2 or #3 last year. He has sat three of the Phillies games because MLB catchers need more rest than other position players–they ALL take whole days off periodically. A catcher playing every day doesn’t happen, except in a scenario like the Reds are employing by carrying three catchers.

        The inability to identify who would replace Maile is a significant flaw in your argument.

        Academically, I agree with you. In practice, the Reds are giving up very little with a third catcher because they did not invest in a bench that would make your theory useful.

      • J

        Stephenson has caught approximately 50% of the Reds games so far. That means it’s possible for one guy to catch approximately 50% of the games. That also means it’s possible for another guy to catch approximately 50% of the games. Do you see how this works out? Stephenson could catch approximately 50% of the games even if there were only one other catcher on the team, and he could continue playing DH or first in the other games, just as he has been. The only thing that is actually different with the three catcher system is that neither Maile nor Casali has had to catch 50% of the games, but the idea that the Reds should be concerned about Maile or Casali becoming fatigued down the stretch is absurd for various reasons.

  9. Trainradio

    Sad team. Bad manager. Cheap owner. My adult children have never seen a truly good Reds team. 55 wins? Maybe 50.

    • GMan88

      I barely have. I’m 43. I live in Tennessee, (mainly Braves fans), and their reaction to my being a Reds fan is that of pure confusion. Still, there is a lot to say about the loyalty of everyone on RLN. This is my favorite place on the whole web. Keep up the good work, Doug!

      • TR

        We Reds fans will always be Cincinnati Reds fans regardless.

  10. Mark A Verticchio

    If the Pirates sweep them, and they probably will, look for a crowd of under 5000 Monday against Texas, less I hope. The only thing that can make the rest of this season watchable will be when, and if, they bring up CES, EDLC, Mclain and Abbott, posssibly a few more. Getting rid of Bell would help perhaps the most.

    • Trainradio

      At this point boycott. 3000 fans. Or less. Major changes needed. So sad.

  11. Jon

    Nick Krall obviously hasn’t had much to work with in terms of budget, but his three most expensive acquisitions have all been disasters: Minor, Pham, and Myers. Toss in his other acquisitions of Strickland, Moran, Newman, Maile, and others these past two seasons that I’m sure I’m forgetting, and you wonder how anyone has faith in him to put together a winning team in the future…

    • LarkinPhillips

      Nick Krall is also who brought in Drury and acquired the majority of highly rated prospects. Two sides to that story.

  12. Mark A Verticchio

    I agree Myers has been a major let down I expected so much more.

    • JayTheRed

      Myers has been a letdown so far. I do wonder what Krall would have done if he had a 140 million budget.

  13. Nicole Cushing

    Delighted to see them come up with new ways to lose! (There’s going to be a lot of losing, so “spicy losing”, losing in as interesting a way as possible, is the best we can hope for.)

    Now I”m going to use a pro wrestling analogy. Imagine, if you will, that all the MLB owners are WWE wrestlers. Bob Castellini would be one of the “jobbers”. Like any jobber, he has to go through the motions of competing. But he’s perfectly happy to sit there and get his ass kicked because he gets paid whether he’s successful or not!

    The analogy has its limits, of course. The jobber is far more dignified than Mr. Castellini. After all, he’s only *pretending* to get his ass kicked in a staged spectacle. Mr. Castellini, on the other hand, *really is* getting his ass kicked, year after year, in a legit sport!


  14. MK

    How long can they continue to run Vosler out there batting around .170. Until when or if Votto is ever available Steer, Stephenson and Myers split time there. Would like to see more of Senzel at third to free up Steer to go there.

  15. DaveCT

    The Hot Stove League isn’t the regular season and definitely isn’t the playoffs. This team is weak. As much as I appreciate Friedl, Fraley, And Fairchild, having 2/3 of your OF at bats going to 4th outfielders on a good team make us AAA/AAAA, not ML

    Having India, Steer and Stephenson is good. But it isn’t great, not yet anyway. With Joey Vosler and Jose Newman, well, at the moment, more AAA/AAAA.

    Greene, Lodolo, and Ashcraft, with Diaz, is a start. A very good start. However, with numerous no names after, it’s no better than a prospect laden AAA pitching staff.

    I haven’t watched a game in over a week. Instead, I jump from one minor league game to another, trying to time up watching the better kids. I recommend the same.

  16. Brian

    Want a truth bomb? Want reality? The Reds have been around for what, 150 years or so? What do they have, like maybe 6-8 HOF players that played the majority of their games with the Reds? A scandalous 1919 title and four legitimate titles? They have the glory years of the amazing 70’s and an awesome 1990 season. They’ve not made any real noise in 33 years, not won a single playoff series and sucked many of those years. The truth and reality is that it’s a bad organization. It’s probably one of the bottom 5 out of 30 teams as an organization. My childhood memories of anything crazy exciting, fun have faded. This group ownership thing isn’t working at all. It’s still my favorite team but that doesn’t change the reality that this organization is a real turd as far as mlb teams go. You may say that this is my opinion but there’s a lot of truth in there too!

    • VegasRed

      No that’s all pretty accurate. Castellini group doesnt have clue how to win at baseball. One would think they would at least be sufficiently intelligent to realize they suck at baseball and, given they all are wealthy and presumably, successful at least to some
      Degree in other endeavors, have enough sense to hire capable, proven successful baseball experts to run the reds and build and manage a winning organization.

      But no. 17 years and counting of pathetically inept baseball.

      Too bad we fans care more than the owner group.

      • Frankie Tomatoes

        Nick Krall was in the Reds organization before Castellini’s group bought the team. Dick Williams, whose family also owns a big chunk of the team, was the previous man in charge.

        The Reds treat the franchise like a town grocery store in 1957. If they know you, you will always been around. They’ll just promote from within because hey that’s the guy we know.

        They’ll never be good. I’ll be long gone and taking my forever dirt nap before this franchise gets straightened out.

    • Erik the red

      You described Reds history accurately in an executive summary.

    • Doc

      How many other franchises have at least five World Series Championships?

    • PTBNL

      To be fair, the Reds have had 9 players in the National Baseball Hall of Fame who have played their entire career as a Red with Davey Concepcion coming, hopefully soon and Pete Rose the player (not the person) as a footnote inception. That does not count managers and executives.

      • PTBNL

        *entire career—correction, most of their careers.

  17. Grand Salami

    It’s about time for TOS to make an appearance. I really thought the Pirate series would prove the Reds were just against tough competition and the side-by-side would show the Reds as a superior team. That was wrong.

    Connor Joe kills this team. McCutchen can’t do much but walk but we seem inclined to indulge him.

    The middle of the order needs to carry its weight and produce some runs or this season is looking how many feared – a light hitting offense couple with inconsistent pitching = 100 more loses.

    Congratulations Bob on redefining a ‘winner’ for this town.

    • greenmtred

      For the season, the Pirates are playing .667ball. We all think of them as bottom-feeders, but they aren’t so far.

      • TR

        Give them time. The season is young and they no longer play the Reds 19 times a year.

      • greenmtred

        They may fold yet, TR, but the Reds are catching them when they’re still giving everyone trouble.

  18. Brian

    Maybe some of the guys are trying to hard to be a Viking?

  19. JayTheRed

    I think people are underestimating the Pirates. They have been rebuilding for several years now. With all of those good picks in the drafts some of that has to be showing either now or really soon.

    Any news on Votto? Is he going to play in games again at some level soon?
    Oh, and on the 3-catcher thing. Casali could play 3 days a week We don’t need the Mailie or however you spell his name.

    I just want to comment on Barrero. 2 errors playing most days of a month almost is not that bad. I do wish he was hitting like .250 or higher but at least this year I don’t see him flailing at everything. He has had some bad at-bats but definitely have seen improvement over last year.

    • MK

      For all the things Votto has accomplished and might accomplish in the future he is not the answer to any question mark with this team. As Branch Rickey told Ralph Kiner. ” “We finished last with you, we can finish last without you.” He won’t be here when they win again so probably shouldn’t be included in the mix now.

  20. Tomn

    Did anyone ask bell why he pulled ashcraft after 5 innings.

    • JayTheRed

      Agree was wondering the same thing he was at 80 something pitches. The guy doesn’t have a clue on how to run a pitching staff.

      • greenmtred

        I don’t know. Not having spoken to Ashcraft, the trainer, the pitching coach, the catcher or, yes, David Bell, I don’t have the basis for an informed opinion on the subject.

  21. Jim Delaney

    We new the Reds were going to be bad. The Reds ownership group which believes they are running a non profit stated that in the off season.
    My biggest concern right now is the acceptance of losing and lack of fight in the team and the organization.
    David Bell oversaw a 100 plus loss season last year, the talent was bad as it is this year but he is the current manager. Ownership eventually will try and show fans change in some fashion. I think relieving Bell of the manager duties in 2023 will happen I just don’t know when. If they don’t start playing better and showing more fire it could be sooner than later.
    The question then is do you turn rains over to a coach on current staff?, ask Larkin to be interim?hire someone outside organization?
    A sad day and time to be a Reds fan..

  22. old-school

    No one thought this team was going to win 85 games. But, is ending April within shouting range of .500 unreasonable to ask? Can the Reds get to Memorial Day and not be 12 games out of first? I guess not.

  23. Mark A Verticchio

    Try to come up with 9 players that could actually be decent major league players that the Reds could use this year, here is my shot. 1, India 2. Steer 3. Stephenson, he is having a poor year, 4. Friedl 5. EDLC 6. CES 7. Mclain, the last three aren’t here but let’s find out about them, now it gets really hard. To be honest that is all I can come up with. You could put Myers, Fraley and maybe Barrerro but those are huge question marks. This team is in for a long year and the future is not bright. my next three would be Marte, Arroyo and Collier who are 21, 19 and 18 respectably.

  24. RedsGettingBetter

    the Reds haven’t won since extended a contract to Greene. The last win was just the day before… it is curious…

    • greenmtred

      So the Greene contract shifted the firmament enough to make a good team bad?

      • RedsGettingBetter

        Just kidding… , by the way never said this was a good team, only they don’t win since that very rare event

      • greenmtred

        I know, RGF. I was kidding, too. A little levity never hurts the grim seriousness.

  25. greenmtred

    For the season, the Pirates are playing .667ball. We all think of them as bottom-feeders, but they aren’t so far.

  26. MBS

    Myers need to be the everyday 1B until a better option opens up. (CES?)

    3C’s needs to be retired. I got it when Stephenson’s health was in question, but he seems fine, except for maybe being a bit light on power. Pick which ever back up C is best with the young pitchers, and trade the other, DFA or what ever.

    DH Senzel / Stephenson
    C Stephenson / Casali
    1B Myers / Vosler
    2B India / Senzel
    3B Steer / Senzel
    SS Barrero / Newman
    RF Fairchild / Ramos
    CF Friedl / Ramos
    LF Fraley / Ramos

    This is how I’d run until McLain, CES, and others join the club.

    • David

      Ramos ain’t hitting crap in AAA. Not sure if he is a good choice.

      At this point, I kind of expect the Reds to get swept by the Pirates this weekend. Cessa pitches tonight, you can chalk that one up. And Greene will pitch okay for a while tomorrow, but he will likely lose too.

      Although I did not think so during Spring Training, the Reds are living down to my lowest expectations now. 100 losses is not out of reach. And Bell will likely NOT get fired over this hot mess. Getting rid of a catcher will not fix this problem.

      • MBS

        Name a better candidate? I’m not picky. Hopkins is hitting. You could bring up Siani, he “ain’t hitting crap in AAA” either, but he’s an elite defender. Benson, no. Rey, no. Martini, no. We don’t need another middle infielder type, so Reynolds, no. McLain is doing very well, but it seems premature to bring him up.

        “Getting rid of a catcher will not fix this problem.” That’s not a good reason not to make improvements. It’s clear we don’t need the training wheels for Stephenson anymore, he’s playing everyday, and spending 50% of his time at C. A 3rd catcher is a redundancy that we no longer need. I was fine with it when we didn’t know if Stephenson could go everyday.

        I don’t blame Bell for much, he needs better players, and that looks to be a slow process since we decided not to sign FA’s to fill holes. We have to wait for players to develop. That’s on Bob, not Bell, not Krall.

  27. Jim t

    The reds have a little bit of everything. Except power. Just not enough of any to win.

    • TR

      Along with two more reliable starting pitchers, the Reds lack a dependable big bat to lead the offense.

  28. Votto4life

    This team lost 100 games last year (it seemed like 200). The Front Office made ZERO effort to improve the team during the off-season.

    Jose Barrero’s two errors are not the problem.

    • Kevin H

      Neither is Nick Senzel like so many say

    • J

      I disagree with this somewhat. The front office did make some improvements. For starters, they dumped Moose, didn’t attempt to resign any of the other overpaid veterans, picked up a guy who was supposed to be a very good hitter (and could be used as trade-bait to add another promising young guy), and added a couple guys who could at least pass for major league catchers. Did they do enough to actually make the team competitive in 2023? Obviously not, but they did make some effort to improve despite spending even less.

      My biggest beef with the front office, aside from the various holes in the roster they probably should have addressed in a more serious way, is that they’re sticking with a manager who seemingly doesn’t add any value whatsoever, and often makes decisions that make things worse than they ought to be. I get that it would be very expensive to add several good pitchers and/or a bona fide slugger, and perhaps not worth the investment, but hiring a new manager would have been cheap, probably paid some immediate and long-term dividends if they’d actually chosen wisely, and sent a message to the players and fans that the front office actually cares more about winning than being nice to people they like.

      • Votto4life

        Everyone who follows baseball knew the Reds couldn’t win with 3 starting pitchers. Everyone who follows baseball knew the bullpen was terrible and has been terrible for three years. Yet, there was no significant effort to sign a starting pitcher and the relievers they brought in are just more of the same.

        Yes, Barrero has made a couple of errors and can’t hit. Yes., Nick Senzel can’t hit. Yes, David Bell is a poor manager. But they are only allowed to stink because the Castellinis allow them to stink.

        I mean if you want to give them credit for cutting Moose that is fine, but to paraphrase Churchill “you don’t win pennants by cutting players”

      • J

        It’s no secret that the front office wasn’t trying to put together a world series champion in 2023. Obviously, the decision not to sign a legitimate fourth starter or any good relievers was negligent if the goal was to be legitimately competitive in 2023. It would have been nice, in the short-term, if they’d spent a bunch of money to make the team more competitive right now. But I can also understand the logic of saying “let’s see what we actually have right now before we start spending a bunch of money to fill holes.” For example, if it turns out Barrero, Steer, Stephenson, Fraley, Friedl, Fairchild, and India are all legitimate everyday major league players, then what is the team supposed to do with all the hitters they’ve got in the minors? One thing to do would be to trade one of those guys for a decent young starting pitcher. And now suddenly you’ve got your #4 starter for the next few years without having to commit $40 million. You can take that $40 million and use it to address whatever holes still remain in 2024 and 2025. There are a lot of variables to consider.

      • TR

        I know that Winston’s mother was born in America but I didn’t know if he was a baseball fan or not.

      • Melvin

        “but to paraphrase Churchill “you don’t win pennants by cutting players”

        Wow. I didn’t know Churchill said that. haha 🙂

    • Kevin H

      Agree. It’s just terrible. Man…

  29. Kevin H

    How do we know McLain, Cruz or Sroud will hit big league pitching?

    People kept say Barrero was the next big thing and while he is better this year he isn’t exactly tearing it up. As fans we see prospects and at times assume they will be instant stars.

    Baseball is a funny game for sure and overreacting by fans even funnier. MYSELF included as I get caught up in a player and refuse to believe they may not make it after all (Senzel)

    • J

      I don’t think anyone is claiming to know what anyone will do in the majors. I think the argument is that if you’ve got guys who clearly can’t hit major league pitching on a regular basis, like Vosler and the two backup catchers, you aren’t losing anything by at least seeing what a promising young guy can do. Worst case scenario is they also can’t hit major league pitching and you send them back to the minors and try someone else. Best case scenario is you discover someone is absolutely ready. India was supposedly not ready for the majors two years ago, but they reluctantly gave him a shot because they had nobody else to play second. Some of us are old enough to remember the fact that he was “supposed” to be in the minors that year because he “needed another year of seasoning” and “wasn’t ready to hit major league pitching.” None of this stuff is as scientific as some people like to imagine it is. Some guys hit better in the majors than they ever did in the minors. Some guys are superstars in the minors and flop in the majors. There’s no science to any of this.

      • Kevin H

        Not suggesting their is a science and agree Volser and the two catchers on bench need to be let go (well one catcher let go). You play those guys then who sits. This goes back to Reds did nothing to improve their bench and while not holding up for Bell in the least. His hands are tied when your bench consist of two catchers and Newman and Fairchild or whom ever

    • J

      The Reds did nothing to improve the bench is probably right, but the way for this team to get better isn’t to have a few proven major leaguers sitting on the bench waiting to take the place of Barrero or Fraley or Steer if they falter. The way to make this team better is to get rid of all the pointless veterans and let unproven guys play as much as possible, and see what happens. Fairchild is a terrible bench player because he’s not proven he can consistently hit major league pitching, but the team isn’t getting any better by having him sit on the bench while Vosler plays most days because he’s left-handed. Fairchild should be playing almost every day to see what he can do. If he can’t hit, then send him to the minors. If he can hit, great.

  30. Kevin H

    Mark Sheldon has a great wrap up on the Reds website. Bell said he pulled Ashcraft as he “battled through the innings” I stopped when I read a few sentences. Just plain hogwash. Ashcraft was pitching well and could of went more innings.

    @LDS I agree with you when you say Bell shouldn’t be managing this team next year, heck even rest of this year.

    • TR

      Does DB consult with his highly regarded pitching coach before making changes or would that take away some of his authority as manager?

  31. Votto4life

    The good news is the Pirates look improved. Maybe that will be us in a couple of years.

  32. Jim Walker

    We are just over 10% of the way through the season; and, the Reds have already tanked one game (the Stoudt start on Wednesday) by design to push the entire rotation (not just Greene) back a day. This came the day after Lodolo was left on the mound to throw 100+ pitches to “save” the bullpen in a game that was hopelessly lost in the 1st inning. I shudder to think what the pitching is going to look like by mid-season let alone the end of the year.

  33. JayTheRed

    Just read on MLB Trade Rumors that Lodolo is negotiating an extension as well . Lets hope it gets done.

    I will say this right now. If David Bell is extended by ownership beyond this season I am done following this team until a new owner comes along.

  34. Greenfield Red

    Don’t speak for me Bill. No more 10 year contracts for guys nearing 30. I have been consistent and will stay consistent. Very few 10 contracts to guys nearing 30 work out for the team… very few. If guys nearing 30 won’t take a 4 or 5 year contract then trade them or let them walk.