Cincinnati had to come from behind once again in this series, but for the second straight night that’s what happened. Neither team would score from the 4th through the 8th innings as they were locked up in a 6-6 tie, but it took just two batters in the bottom of the 9th for the Reds to complete their comeback against the Dodgers that was capped off by Will Benson’s 1st big league homer to walk off with an 8-6 win.

Final R H E
Los Angeles Dodgers (35-27)
6 8 0
Cincinnati Reds (29-33)
8 13 1
W: Diaz (2-1) L: Phillips (1-2)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

Mookie Betts led off the game with a home run to put the Dodgers in the lead about as quick as possible. After a Freddie Freeman fly out, Will Smith doubled and then came around to score on a 2-out single by Max Muncy that put Los Angeles up 2-0.

Matt McLain would pick up a 1-out single in the bottom of the 1st inning and then he’d steal second base. That set up Elly De La Cruz to hit a home run that landed in the top row of the stadium in right-center to tie the game up. They estimated it at 458 feet, but that feels light.

The game didn’t stay tied up for all that long as Miguel Vargas led off the 2nd inning with a home run to put the Dodgers back in front. In the 3rd inning it was Will Smith hitting another home run off of Brandon Williamson, but this one came with a runner on and put Los Angeles up 5-2. They weren’t done, though, as J.D. Martinez would double and come around to score later in the inning on a double off of the wall in left by Miguel Vargas that extended the lead for the visitors to 6-2.

It turns out that this Reds team don’t quit. Matt McLain tripled to lead off the bottom of the third and then scored on a sacrifice fly by Jonathan India. Elly De La Cruz followed up with the fastest triple in Major League Baseball this season and he scored on a blooper into center by Spencer Steer. Tyler Stephenson then tied the game up on a 2-run homer into the seats in right field.

From there both teams got their pitching in order. Los Angeles did so by going to the bullpen and cutting off Syndergaard’s start at three innings. Cincinnati got 2.2 shutout innings after the Reds tied things up from Williamson before Buck Farmer got the final out of the 6th and tossed a perfect 7th. Lucas Sims then came out and threw a perfect 8th inning to keep the game knotted up at 6-6.

Alexis Diaz took over for Cincinnati in the top of the 9th and he did what he’s been doing all year – he picked up two strike outs and a fly out for yet another scoreless inning. That set up the Reds for a potential walk-off win in the bottom of the 9th.

TJ Hopkins started the inning off right, picking up an infield single to turn the lineup over. That’s exactly what was needed because Will Benson followed up with a walk-off home run that landed halfway up the seats in right field. It was Benson’s first big league home run and it couldn’t possibly have felt better.

Key Moment of the Game

Will Benson’s walk-off home run.

Notes Worth Noting

The Reds won their third straight game, and their second straight game in walk-off fashion over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Will Benson went 1-20 with 12 strikeouts and one walk in the first two weeks of the season before being sent to Triple-A. Since being recalled on May 26th he’s gone 9-26 (.346) with three walks and five strikeouts.

Buck Farmer allowed three runs on April 4th. Since then he’s allowed four runs in 26.2 innings. His ERA is down to 2.37 on the season.

Alexis Diaz allowed three runs on April 8th. Since then he’s allowed one earned run in 21.1 innings, allowed just seven hits, and he’s struck out 40 batters. His ERA is now down to 1.48 on the year.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Los Angeles Dodgers vs Cincinnati Reds

Thursday June 8th, 12:35pm ET

Clayton Kershaw (7-4, 3.25 ERA) vs Graham Ashcraft (3-4, 6.64 ERA)

170 Responses

  1. Indy Red Man

    I give it to the Reds scouting dept. I don’t know where they found all these guys, but they have alot of talent. Benson was a 1st rounder from Cleveland that they evidently gave up on. Keep sniffing around and dumpster diving for some pitching and we’re good to go for the next 5-6 years

    • JB

      You and Old School on the bandwagon now or you two still giving up on the season? I got plenty of room for you two! Come on brother this is the year. Central sucks and the kids can take it.

      • JayTheRed

        Add me in. This team is electric and just so fun to watch most of the season. With the Callups it’s made it even better.

        Could you imagine every game being this fun. I know we are going to lose some games but just wow.

      • Indy Red Man

        Lol. Is Woodruff coming back? They’ve got the pitching

    • David

      The Indians were stuck with a 40 man roster situation, and couldn’t keep Benson, along with all the other players they wanted on their 40 man. Benson just hadn’t “developed” as fast or as they thought, so they swapped him with the Reds for a younger, highly valued prospect that didn’t need to be protected on the 40 man.

      Reminds me a little of how the Reds got Brandon Phillips from the Indians when then didn’t think he would settle for playing 2nd base with them. And the rest… history.

    • Rcsodak

      One good hit doesn’t make a player

      • DonVotto

        Certainly a good start and good confidence builder for guy who has great talent.

      • Still a Red

        True. But he had a fantastic spring. And seems to be coming into his own. He is a big man and can scorch the ball. Time will tell.

    • SteveAReno

      Must give some credit to our coaching staff at levels like in Louisville for working with the raw talent and honing it into good some good production. Benson came back up with some real improvements.

  2. MBS

    EDLC and McLain are amazing, but super happy for Benson and Hopkins. Both guys were doing great in AAA, and came up big in tonight’s win!!

    Let’s Go!!!

  3. JB

    Benson and Freidl are the reason I want Barrero sent to AAA. They both went down and worked on their hitting and found something. Sitting on the bench isn’t helping Barrero.
    I’ll say this about Benson, he don’t get cheated. He is going to send somebody to the hospital with lasers he hits.
    Enthusiasm from the youths will carry this team to the playoffs. Funny thing about McLain,EDLC,Hopkins and Strand is they have been doing this all season at Louisville. No deficit is to big for them. Just keep grinding. Get your playoff tickets!!

    • 2020ball

      The Reds seem intent on protecting Barrero’s option, and I’m certain Barrero doesn’t agree with you on being sent down. Their treatment of him tells me they want to keep him and I think thats more of a credit than anyone thinks. They’ve at least been hesitant to use it which gives them some flexibility.

      • LDS

        An interesting premise, but it doesn’t explain not playing for the last week. Unless Newman is shipping out in the next few days, which I can’t see, Barrero is simply a dead roster slot. With 3 catchers, that’s a thin bench. I more suspect they are waiting until Votto or Ramos is ready and he goes down then. I’m not really enthusiastic about either of them returning. The younger guys are making progress

      • 2020ball

        Ramos’s 40 man spot is in danger IMO. Most people suggest a pitcher, but I dont think the Reds want to burn their depth there. Myers probably doesnt have a starting role anymore if Benson can keep his recent success going so his spot is vulnerable as well.

        I’d like Barrero playing more too, but I’m not sure he provides any better production than Newman so it doesn’t bother me as much. Could see him starting tomorrow. I also could see him being optioned tomorrow to make room for CES. Doesn’t really matter to me. He’ll be fine and get his chance eventually, hopefully he’s finally ready for it.

      • LDS

        I’d like to see CES up as well, but with Votto heading back, I don’t see how that works. I’d like to see you be right about Myers and Ramos.

      • Luke J

        Unless something drastically changes, I don’t see Votto coming back and getting in the way. He has been clear he isn’t coming back until he can play at a high level. It’s also been clear he won’t be playing at a high level anytime soon. So I don’t know why people keep assuming he’ll be back in the near future. My assumption is he goes on this rehab assignment, just like the one at the beginning of the year, doesn’t perform, and goes back to work on things with the big league club just like before. I see nothing that tells me this rehab stint will result in him playing for the Reds.

      • Still a Red

        I’m guessing Votto doesn’t come back ’til after the All Star Break. And would he be willing to DH?

  4. Dewey Roberts

    Doug, I now see why you wrote a few years ago that if the Reds tried to trade EDLC that “we all strike.” This kid is a phenom. It has been a long time since I have been this excited about a Reds rookie. And both McLain and Abott have impressed me tremendously. But De la Cruz is special! Very special.

    • AMDG

      Bowden would have likely traded EDLC away for a middle reliever…

      • AC

        EDLC is the toolshed Bowden dreamed about. Lest we forget the Willy Mo Pena era.

  5. VaRedsFan

    I wonder if Elly could have helped the previous series??
    Probably wasn’t ready yet.

    • Tampa Red

      Seriously man, that’s your takeaway?

      • 2020ball

        Some people just live to complain.

      • VaRedsFan

        Who complained? Serious question.
        No answer?? Do you have an opinion?

      • 2020ball

        My opinion is why bother even thinking about it. The Reds clearly were avoiding the super 2 cutoff, and he’s not a pitcher. Why not just enjoy the win.

    • SteveAReno

      There’s a lot of chess pieces on this board and sometimes the timing isn’t perfect because there is a piece in front blocking the obvious move. It takes more time to move these pieces around and too many of us (not the boomers) want it all quickly like the drive thru window or sending a tweet.

      • AC

        That move was on the board at least three weeks ago.

  6. Rut

    Finally feels good to be a Reds fan again, doesn’t it?

    • Dewey Roberts

      Krall deserves a lot of credit for getting several of these players in trades. Of course, McLain, Abbott, and EDLC were drafted by the Reds. I like this youth movement. We are a starting pitcher and CES away from an annual playoff team. Good times are about to roll for the Reds again.

      • earmbrister

        Krall deserves a TON of credit for the trades, the cheap player adds, and making more with less. BTW, EDLC was an international signing, for $65k IIRC. If Lodolo and Ashcraft get right, we might not even need to add a starting pitcher. The last four months of the season will show what holes have to be addressed in the roster. Can’t wait to see CES added to this lineup – it’s going to happen sooner than later.

      • Mario

        Yes Krall deserves a ton of credit for the young talent acquired in the trades, but also deserve the blame for leaving McLain, EDLC, and now CES in AAA too long. Overall, Krall’s done a really good job with the financial resources given him and would likely be picked up quickly if he left the Reds.

      • greenmtred

        Mario: how do you know that he did?

  7. Tampa Red

    Can’t wait for the usual suspects to chime in with the “lineup sucks, Reds will never win with Bell” tomorrow.

    Until then, great win, love watching this team never quit and grinding out wins. Just flipping fantastic baseball!!

    • VaRedsFan

      That’s you takeaway? To complain about people wanting the best players in the lineup?
      You’d probably still be on the Myers train if he were on the roster. “He’ll get going sooner or later guys” “It’s only a matter of time” The Reds wasted 6 weeks with that approach. I want all players to perform well, but if they don’t, move aside for the next guy.

      Turns out that all the complainers have been right about Mclain, EDLC, Abbott, and others so far (SSS applies). So excuse most of us for not wanting to settle for inferior players. Our competitive bars are set infinitely higher than yours. Keep your expectations low, so you can pat yourself on the back when they hurdle that 3 inch bar that you deem as acceptable play.

      • SteveAReno

        Best players change over time and it’s a subjective matter depending on the situation. When the best players have a bad game or even a bad week or two the complainers start with their “we know better than the coaches and evaluation staff”, “do it my way or I’ll quit being a fan” whining from the chairs in front of their screen. That gets old.

      • greenmtred

        It’s also entirely possible that the success of players like Friedl, McClain, EDLC, etc. is partly–I say partly–a function of the way the Reds have handled them. As for the “best” players playing everyday, I understand the complaint, but lately some of the best players have been injured, so lesser players have to play. Bell seems to believe that it’s important to give everybody playing time and gets ridiculed for that (“it’s not Little League…”). My view is that during the season all of the players will be needed at one time or another and it’s wise to keep them ready. There is also a little inconsistency afoot: Barrero is clearly not one of the best players currently but many are concerned that he’s not starting.

    • 2020ball

      Or the Reds did it right and thats why theyre having so much success with these guys? Had that even crossed your mind?

      Enjoy an exciting team and let it go, I certainly don’t see how you’re all so “right”. Instead of your approach the Reds are set up for now and the future and have all the players still if an injury comes up. Also I really dont care what you think anyones “competitive bar” is.

      • VegasRed

        Whatever. How about y’all fan however you want.

        This Reds show is really taking off. Fun times finally for excitement starved Reds fans. I hope the young guys can keep it going and make the adjustments that will have to come but man what a start.

        I also hope the team doesn’t trade any of the youngins’ until we see how they all progress this year.

        And I admit I’m no believer in Bell ( I ADMIT I COINED THE “tinker bell” moniker, for which I apologized and stopped using it myself) but—-that sure looks like a team that loves each other and are pulling for each other!

        And while I mainly credit the character of the players for that, Bell and his staff have to get some of that credit as well as some managers can never get that to happen in a team.

        Go Reds Go!

      • greenmtred

        I should have read your comment before I wrote mine, 2020.

  8. Jon

    Krall needs to find a way to add a SP or two before the deadline. As magic as this offense is, the starting pitching cannot continue to give up 5+ runs a night. If he can pull off a deal similar to the Bauer one using Barrero and Senzel, I’ll be impressed.

    Ken Rosenthal had a video on Twitter today questioning if Dombrowski would tear things down in Philly if they’re out of it at the deadline. Would it be crazy to think that the Reds could take Castellanos and most/all of his contract? (They obviously can afford it with nothing on the books past this year except Greene.) He would take the leadership role on this team and solidify RF for the next three years.

    Seriously though, how perfect would it be to have Votto get another chance in the postseason in his final year?

  9. RedlegScott

    WTG, Benson! Hit it harder, de LaCruz! Bullpen superb again. Offense bailing out starting pitching may be a trend with Weaver, Williamson, and Lively (hopefully not Ashcraft, too). Whatever works, right? Good game, guys. Must feel great.

    • Doc

      I give Williamson some credit. After a horrific start, he got it together and added 2.2 scoreless innings, holding the game tied and saving probably at least two BP pitchers.

      Agree with earlier comment that we have seen enough excellent starts by enough different starters that we could have the starters we need. Time will tell.

  10. JB

    For me growing up, Willie Mays,Hank Aaron ,Roberto Clemente were must see at bats. You always ran to the TV to watch. EDLC and McLain are that for me now. That stadium is electric. It feels good to beat the crap out of other teams. This feeling was what you felt with BRM. Lord just let me live long enough to see the Reds and Bengals win the big one.

    • Dewey Roberts

      JB, you have some good initials there. Just keep living. It looks like good times are starting for the Reds. The kids are unbelievable.

    • TR

      Exciting times in Cincy and the Metro area, and the old city has actually gained some population in the last few years. And it’s third pro franchise is not doing bad also, FC Cincinnati.

    • greenmtred

      I have very similar memories, JB. I was fortunate enough to see all three of those great players at Crosley Field. Stan Musial, too (he wouldn’t give autographs).

  11. JB

    One last thing, Reds have 17 wins at home. 5 are walkoffs!! A little over 1/3 of their wins. That’s nuts! Cardiac kids ??

    • AMDG

      5/17 > 1/3 ????

      What kind of common core nonsense is this? 😉

      • JB

        Lmao. I’m just a little excited. Common core? Is that still a thing they are pushing?

  12. Redsvol

    Mr. Benson – welcome back to the show. So glad for him and Hopkins. As well as the good people of Cincinnati who so much deserve a winner.

    Nick Krall – congratulations. But don’t pat yourself on the back until you get these young guys signed to long term extensions. EDLC will more than pay for himself with butts in seats. McLain is obviously going to have a long, successful career.

    Now the really hard work begins – how do we acquire the pitching necessary to compete in the playoffs the next several years. We don’t have enough on the current 40 man roster.

    • 2020ball

      Marte will be asked about a lot but that’s our biggest chip that feels expendable. I’d prefer to keep him personally, but the Reds will have to get serious about trades soon if they want to supplement this core. Arroyo, Collier, these are the sorts of guys the Reds will need to give up if theyre serious about competing in the short term. India is their biggest chip.

      • 2020ball

        India for sure bigger than Marte anyway, but he’s great as a part of the core too.

      • David

        Arroyo is not hitting worth Squat in High A this year. I think he was also on the DL.
        He is still “highly rated” prospect, but his value to the Reds might be as a person to trade for that vaunted “pitching”. How many shortstops will the Reds need in the next five years, if EDLC is playing Shortstop?

      • MBS

        Arroyo is coming on STRONG. Since May 31st he’s 14 for 27 good for a .515 BA, 2 HR’s. It’s still a hot streak, but is surface of the sun hot. Hopefully it’s just the beginning of a turn around for him.

      • AMDG

        @ David

        A 19-year old in high A ball who is hitting 0.290 over the past month, and 0.522 over the past week “isn’t hitting worth squat”?

    • earmbrister

      Wish I knew what Benson was yelling after the homerun swing and before he spiked his bat.

      Seems like a very likeable and well spoken guy. If he would just show a little emotion sometimes …

    • CI3J

      The Reds will have a lot of money from the Votto, Moose, and Griffey contracts coming off the books this offseason. Probably the biggest FA pitcher names (besides Shohei Ohtani) are Aaron Nola, Julio Urias, and Luis Severino. The Reds should have enough get one of them, if they re-invest all the freed up money into doing so.

      But a trade could also be in the cards.

      • Doc

        Keep in mind the big contracts given to deGrom and Syndegaard and look at how that is paying off. I don’t buy the spend big on a pitcher argument as though it is just an obvious conclusion, especially in an era where starters go 5-6 innings. Draft and develop pitching to keep a steady flow. Maybe trade a surplus prospect here and there for a good pitching prospect that scouting has identified. Otherwise we’ll just have another situation with a huge contract acting as a drag. Use the money to tie up homegrown studs with multi year deal.

    • JayTheRed

      With a struggling Ashcraft on our side. Nervous for sure.

    • AC

      Good test for the young guys, looking forward to it. Already have found money this series, on to Stl!

    • Doc

      Kershaw already has four losses. He is beatable and I recall that the Reds were competitive against him the last couple years without today’s offense.

      • RedlegScott

        We’ll see. I hear he’s dealing with an injury. At times, he is unstoppable. Good luck, guys!

  13. Steve Schoenbaechler

    I will specify, I have said before that these players seem to love playing for Bell, which is a characteristic of a good manager, but not the only one.

    I will specify that, I know Benson won the game, but everyone knows on here and everywhere, before the game, “Why is Benson leading off?”

    It’s a pure example of the players winning “in spite of” the manager, not “because of” the manager.

    Job Well Done, Reds, as well as Willie. One more tomorrow afternoon.

    I love this youth. As long as they keep their heads straight, as long as we can get some pitching, I think we have something.

    • David

      I think that Bell’s personality probably plays well with a lot of these younger guys, and he does not try to embarrass players in the press if they screw up. I have seen a lot of managers do that, in hopes of “motivating” a player. And sometimes it just ticks people off. Tommy LaSorda used to give Bill Russell all kinds of grief when they were converting him from an outfielder to a shortstop. Russell eventually became a very good shortstop, but it must have been a hard road to hoe.
      Bell has his problems as a manager, but I don’t think he is an irritating guy to play for and sit in the dugout with.

    • Luke J

      I’m a huge complainer about Bell and his lineups. But I am absolutely not complaining about having Benson lead off last night. One of my biggest complaints is how Bell never rides the hot hand. He benches the young guys after a good performance and cools them off. This is one of the few times Bell made a move to keep a player hot. Benson has been on fire since being called back up and Bell made the right move leading him off. Give credit where it’s due. Lots of reasons to complain about Bell. Don’t look for more where they don’t exist.

      • Steve Schoenbaechler

        Benson has been on fire? has his last 7 days with a 214 BA.

      • Luke J

        Did you even read the article you are commenting on? It makes the point that since Benson got called back up, he’s 9-26, which is .346. He’s been hitting the ball really well lately, with lots of exit velocity and only 5 strikeouts in those 26 ABs. He is absolutely playing well the last few weeks.

    • greenmtred

      Steve: It’s certainly not an example of the players winning in spite of the manager. I hope that your tongue was firmly in your cheek.

      • greenmtred

        Ah, well. I hoped it was but didn’t think so. There’s a tradition of using that fallback argument at RLN. People were earnestly saying the same thing about Dusty Baker. It rests on flawed logic and two flawed assumptions: that fans know more about the game and players than do the manager and coaches and, secondly, that managers have outsized impact on wins and losses. As somebody said earlier–I paraphrase–fan the way you want. Absolutely, and it’s fun to talk about baseball.

    • Still a Red

      How many of us were shouting at Bell to take Williamson out in the 3rd inning after a HR and two doubles and 6 runs total. But Bell stuck with him. And let him go on, probably because Stephenson tied the game, which basically reset the game for Williamson. Of course, if the Reds hadn’t tied it, everyone would have been complaining he left Williamson in too long. But Williamson came through (3rd time through the line-up no less) and I’m sure benefitted from the trust put in him. I’d say that was some good managing there. While I certainly question some of Bell’s moves, I don’t think he’s nearly as bad as some here suggest.

      Benson leading off sounds as much like a fluke with a later scratch of Fraley. But he’s riding a hot bat at the moment, which people on this site think Bell should take more advantage of.

      • Doc

        The lead off batter only leads off the game one time. After that he is just the next guy up in the batting order.

      • Steve Schoenbaechler has him at a 214 BA last 7 games. That’s hot?

    • Adrian

      The single most important thing a manager does to help his team win lies in things that are not currently quantifiable. They may be some day, and that’s an area for sabermetric analysis to continue to explore, but for now the ability of a manager to keep the team’s attitudes positive, manage the burden of a 162-game season and lead the players is more important than lineup order (doesn’t really matter much over the course of a season), bullpen decisions, or lineup construction (which these days is dictated at least partially by most front offices and is no longer the sole purview of the manager).

      Which doesn’t mean a decision here or there isn’t bad or that individual games might not play out differently if a different choice is made; rather, it’s that the majority of managers are nowhere near inept enough – no matter the confirmation bias that we as fans often apply to our memories – to actually cost/get their team more than a couple of wins a year.

      Bell’s players seem to like him, the front office hasn’t sacrificed him to appease the fans in the wake of last year’s fire sale, and he has provided over the only winning seasons the Reds have had in the last 10 years (Dusty Baker was our manager in 2013, the last time before 2020 they were over .500), and he handles the press well. So while no one can say for sure how good he is at the currently unquantifiable aspects of his job, the peripheral indicators – including his good rapport with young players – suggest he’s a positive there. And so It’s always struck me as odd that some people are so adamant that Bell is a bad manager, because it seems clear to me that, some weird in-game decisions aside, he’s actually pretty good at his job.

  14. Protime

    Nothing cures all ills like winning! Now is the time to bring up CES, you can’t have enough hitting…

  15. Tourniquette

    JB said it best, it’s FUN to watch this team again, win or lose. It’s been a long time since I’ve chimed in here, and I couldn’t be happier to do so again.

  16. Tim

    The Reds have some studs. Some really nice work by the pen. Diaz and Farmer are doing great work. Diaz should be an all star. If we can get the starting rotation going we could have a pretty special second half.

    • Doc

      Is that the same Farmer that a bunch of people wanted the Reds to DFA earlier in the season. Probably a good thing Krall makes his own decisions without RLN input!

      • JB

        Not sure why people are down on Farmer. The guy has been great since the call up last year.

  17. Willaim

    Happy days are here again! I like this team. The pitching needs work, but I think they will get there. I am so glad they brought un De La Cruz. What a player!

  18. Melvin

    De La Cruz after two games with an OPS of 1.842….still waiting for him to get going smh…..:D

  19. Redsvol

    I know he gave up 6 runs in the 1st 3 innings, but I have to point out that Williamson ground out almost 6 innings. Thereby saving much of the bullpen for tomorrow. Box score certainly isn’t kind to him but he is also a part of the win and likely learned a lot by continuing to work into that 6th inning. This is how a young pitcher learns – build up a callous and don’t repeat the same mistakes again. Pitching @GABP is hard.

    Now we can go back with Gibault, Cruz, Salazar and Young tomorrow. Hoping Graham busts out and gives us 7 strong.

    • greenmtred

      Glad you pointed that out, Redsvol. I was wincing constantly as he gave up homers and other assorted rockets, but he settled down.

    • VaRedsFan

      It certainly worked this time, as Williamson gave the team 3 great innings after getting shelled. Sometimes it doesn’t work, like with Ashcraft’s last start. Baseball at it’s best.

  20. William

    Is there a player on any MLB team with more talent than Eli De La Cruz?

    • 2020ball

      Hmmm, yeah there probably is right? That you can even ask that and it not sound like a bad question is pretty crazy though. The difference between him and anyone that might match his talent is that he’s 21.

      • greenmtred

        If we’re talking about current skill level there probably is. Raw physical talent is another matter. I’m really trying–but not too hard–to temper my enthusiasm by remembering Aquino and, even, Jay Bruce, who started out playing like juiced Barry Bonds and settled into to a career as a good but not superstar- level player. This is a lot of fun. Live for the moment.

  21. 2020ball

    Both Votto and CES added to the team is my preference with CES getting regular starts and both sharing 1B/DH. Casali or Maile is one spot. DFAing Newman is the most obvious other spot. Optioning Barrero is an option that protects your depth, but leaves the team short in CF and you lose roster flexibility with him. The upside is he plays more often.

    Steer/Benson/Fraley in the corner OF. When Senzel is healthy you can option Fairchild or Barrero.

    • 2020ball

      Obviously this is a ways away for Votto. Right now I’d just ditch the 3 catchers and call up CES.

    • redfanorbust

      Hey 2020 ball agree with most of what you had to say. One thing though I may be wrong but Newman has a minor league option left so not sure I would DFA him. I would not send him down to AAA either even though he would be an nice depth piece. I would hang on to him for a trade till the trading deadline. I know he seems to be the poster boy on here for the most wanted player to get rid of and I get it but IMO better to gets something for him. He did have another two hits today and is hitting .270, plays 1st, 2nd 3rd and SS so think he has some trade value.

      • 2020ball

        He actually has 3 options left, and no I didnt think of that. He doesn’t necessarily deserve it, but I’d be fine with optioning him. Votto’s gonna have to look ready for me to do that though.

      • SteveAReno

        Too much negativity for a player like Newman who’s producing pretty well for team. The negative whiners love to pile up on someone and take their cues from others. They are “behind the screen” bullies. At least the coaches and owners know how to use him to help us win. He’s a bargain.

      • jon

        He ain’t going to AAA because Bell is in love with him.i also hope they don’t cater to Votto and hurt CES progress.

    • CI3J

      If they optioned Barrero, they’d be fine in CF with Friedl, Benson, and Fairchild all perfectly good options there. Senzel and McLain also capable of playing the position.

      • Luke J

        Why would Fairchild be a better option than Barrero? Serious question.

      • VaRedsFan

        @Luke – My answer would be so Jose B. can go to AAA to get consistent playing time. Fairchild can remain as outfield backup.

      • Luke J

        But Fairchild is basically playing every day. Friedl is out. I just don’t see why Fairchild should get that playing time over Barrero.

    • Doc

      You lose roster flexibility when Votto comes back.

  22. CFD3000

    Great game after a crazy start. It looked like Williamson might give up 5 runs an inning early on, then he settled down and got some critical outs. Another nice night by the bullpen – an ongoing tip of the cap to that squad. And of course the offense was just fun. When was the last time the Reds had two triples in an inning at GABP? And a fantastic finish for Benson who has persevered and is now showing the potential he flashed this spring. Newman instead of Barrero again is a waste, so send Jose back to AAA on the Benson plan please.

    How about a sweep of the Dodgers, with EDLC getting his first right handed HR off future Hall of Famer Kershaw, and Graham Ashcraft getting back to his ground ball inducing success? Go Reds!

  23. RedlegScott

    Where in the world is there room for Encarnacion-Strand? (Good problem to have, but it may delay his arrival.)

    • wolfcycle

      c stephenson
      1b ces
      2b India
      ss McClain
      3b ELDC
      DH Steer ( rotate with CES)
      LF Fraley/ Senzel
      CF TJ/ Barrero
      RF Benson/ Fairchild

      bench Caselli, Freeman, and outfielders not starting and Jose should be able to help in infield if he gets out of doghouse.

      • DHud

        Wish the reds had the luxury of benching Freeman

      • RedlegScott

        Where’s Votto? You know he’s getting p.t.

  24. CallowayPost

    Went to the game, my first since moving back from LA, and this is certainly a different team. The only thing I’ve seen overlooked tonight by the recaps, and radio recaps, is the Reds added ANOTHER four stolen bases to their team total. They had Noah in his own head all night.

    My seat was down the 1st base line…and when Elly hit that pitch, I only saw it off the bat for a split second. I lost it in the sky, and thought it was a mile high pop-up…once I relized where it landed…it was like I had never watched baseball before.

    That kid has some magic in him. He and McClain are some kind of duo.

    • Mike Adams

      Thanks for those at the game comments.

    • VaRedsFan

      You picked a good one to go to!!

  25. redfanorbust

    Echo everyone on here exciting game with EDLC almost hitting it out of the ball park. Saw the kid who got the ball. He and his friend were soooo happy. I wonder if Reds will offer them something for it? I am still very concerned with our starting pitching. Can’t keep this up being down so many runs early. Tomorrow’s game will tell a lot. Kershaw vs Ashcraft. Kershaw may not be the Kershaw of old but he is still really good. Ashcraft obviously has run into a brick wall as of late and going against the Dodgers and Kershaw is not a recipe for success when your struggling so much. Here is hoping that Ashcraft and Derek Johnson have come up with some fixes. Will also be interesting to see how the Reds hit against a big time pitcher like Kershaw.

    • DHud

      They posted on social media after the game that both EDLC and Benson both got their ball back. Looked like the guy that actually caught it got a signed bat and ball and all his friends a signed ball

  26. Mike Adams

    I love the RLN enthusiasm for this team that never quits.
    Today’s game (Thursday) can indicate where the Reds are as far as competing for a playoff spot.
    Reds are weak in the pitching department and pitching comes to the forefront in the playoffs.
    Can they win today against Kershaw? If it is close can they hang on to win 1-0, 2-0, 2-1?
    We shall see and it is GREAT to anticipate how our boys will do today!

  27. AMDG

    Benson seems to be showing with consistent playing time can do for a player’s development and confidence

    Despite hitting 0.077, he went on to play in 9 of the next 10 games and has hit 0.320 over that span.

    It makes me wonder if Barrero could do something similar if Bell were to ever give him consistent playing time…

    • Jim t

      If he would stop chasing balls a foot off the plate it could happen.

      • CI3J

        The only way he can learn to do that is by playing.

      • Jim t

        You earn your playing time by performing.

      • CI3J

        Sounds like a Catch-22 to me.

        You can’t play unless you perform, but you can’t perform unless you play.

      • Redsvol

        Ah, the old “chicken or the egg” argument. All I know is that baseball is unique. A team has to invest playing time in most players in order to be rewarded.

        Most players stink their first 400 at bats very few are Matt McLain and EDLC. Take Jose Siri for example. He was never given consistent at bats until this year- and his stats were terrible. Finally, the Tampa bay rays committ to him and say you are our center fielder / no matter what- and surprise, the offense develops.

        Can’t do that at many positions and be a playoff team, but couldn’t the Reds do it at 1 position? I think they could. Option Fairchild, option senze(when he returns) and play Barerro him somewhere in the outfield 4 out of 5 games for rest of the year.

      • Jim t

        Certainly every situation is different but in team environments you have to be careful. You want to destroy a team create a situation were a youngster is afforded a large window of opportunity and it is hurting the performance of the team. Not an easy task for Bell and staff to navigate the fine lines associated with managing a 26 man roster. Especially when then are still in the hunt for division and wild card.

      • Kevin H


        Why would you option Nick Senzel when he returns for Barrero to get abs? Senzel is hitting very well against left handed pitching. Can platoon with Fraley. That would be a move that makes zero sense to me

      • greenmtred

        Practice is a well-known corrective for bad habits. Concert pianists, gymnasts, quarterbacks, soldiers, etc. all practice exhaustively. Barrero could–and likely is–fed a diet of sliders low and away when he’s practicing hitting. Of course in-game situations are finally necessary, but if he isn’t mastering it in practice, do think that he will in a game?

      • Redsvol

        @Kevin H – several reasons. Mainly because we know what Senzel is by now. He has 1100 AB’s across 4 seasons. He has a great, super-small sample size (44 AB’s) against lefties this year. With Elly up, infield AB’s no longer available and Nick can’t stay healthy when he plays the outfield. We need the at bats he would be given to be given to the new guys.

        I would rather find out if Barerro could become 10 times the player Senzel has become. Only way to find out is put him in and stay with it for 400 AB’s. I can wait until July when hopefully Nick still has trade value.

  28. RedsGettingBetter

    The Reds should be among the team leaders in walk-off wins this year. Incredibly how EDLC and McLain dúo change this team just thinking they lost 3 games against an average Brewers and now they won the series with a chance to sweep one of the best team in baseball as LAD.
    I wonder how Ashcraft could make an adjustment during his just 4 days of resting to avoid get pummeled again, this time vs the Dodgers strong offense.

    • Redsvol

      Let the umpire call balls and strikes and adjust to his strike zone quickly and professionally. That would be a good adjustment.

      • greenmtred

        The umpiring has been execrable, but Ashcraft isn’t helping himself at all by mostly pitching up in the zone. Lately when he does pitch down he misses his presumptive spot and he also, to my eye, doesn’t have movement on his pitches even approaching what he had previously.

  29. newsronic

    Once more, cheerful days are here! I enjoy this group. They need to work on their pitching, but I believe they will get there. I am so pleased that a De La Cruz was brought in. What a performer!

  30. CI3J

    I really love this image about 1 second after EDLC launched his rocket. Look at the faces in the crowd. They know they just saw something spectacular. Long may it continue.

    • greenmtred

      Amen. It was a great thing to see.

  31. Indy Red Man

    I predict a Barrero sighting today vs Kershaw and they face a lefty tomorrow too. Fairchild was horrible and you’d think Newman needs a break at some point?

    • wkuchad

      Newman’s break should wait until Saturday.

      Friedl’s expected return on Saturday is perfect timing.

      I wish Senzel was available today and tomorrow.

    • DHud

      Newman at 1B
      Barrero CF
      Steer in LF

      No Fairchild today

  32. redsnc

    just watch india waiting for benson to come home he was so excited for him! love it

  33. old-school

    Krall in the Enquirer this morning not ruling out being buyers at the deadline. said things have to play out the next few weeks and see where we are but the goal isnt to build a farm system, its to win.

    Bullpen might be an area a few additions could help without losing much prospect capital. Scott barlow at KC is a good reliever, costly, but also controlled through 2024 and would help next year too.

    Royals going to cut payroll by trading chapman/barlow/ and try to unload huge contract of AS catcher Salvador Perez

  34. Oldtimer

    OTD in 1965, the Reds drafted Johnny Bench in 2nd round of first ever draft.

    I have seen Reds play twice this year. May 5 and 6 versus White Sox. Both games well played. Won one, lost one. Both games fun to watch. I chose to pay $100 (average, $98 one night and $102 the other) for Scout Club seats.

    The Reds are even more fun to watch now than a month ago.

    • LarkinPhillips

      You must have the same Reds desk calendar as I do. I agree about the Reds and just bought some Scout club seats for myself and the wife as well.

    • David

      Bernie Carbo was drafted first. Remember…Bernie Carbo? And Johnny Bench was around in the 2nd round? Isn’t that incredible?

      Bernie batted .320 and hit 20 HR in his rookie year (1970 season), and that would be the high water mark of his career. Never ever came close to those numbers again

      • Oldtimer

        Tom Seaver was drafted by LAD in 10th round in 1965 draft. Nolan Ryan was drafted by NYM in 12th round that year.

  35. Tom Mitsoff

    Get ready for the next step in Elly De La Cruz’s major-league adjustments. He is not going to see a fastball anywhere near the plate for awhile now. David Bell said he was called up because they believe he is ready to make the adjustments he is going to need to make. Kershaw won’t get a fastball within a foot of the plate against EDLC today.

    • LarkinPhillips

      I can’t wait to see a lineup with CES and Friedl in it.
      4. EDLC
      5. Steer
      6. CES
      7. Fraley/Senzel
      8. TySteve/2nd catcher
      9. Benson/Fairchild/Newman/Hopkins

      WIth Votto coming back and Ramos, there will be a lineup squeeze and CES needs to be called up. I would option Barrero, Hopkins, and lose a catcher. Myers and Newman should both be dealt for whatever we get. A low A player is fine. Newman is very replaceable with Reynolds in AAA if an infield injury occurred after trading Newman away. Kuhnel should lose a 40 man spot. You don’t have to squint hard to see a dang good team. Especially if any of Lodolo/Ashcraft/Williamson take a step forward towards consistently being good.

      • LarkinPhillips

        Kevin, I actually posted the answer to that over on RML. Assuming Votto starts hitting better (I hope he does), I see him filling a role similar to Pujols last year which is a couple starts at DH and a pitch hitting role. To make that happen and a CES promotion, the 3 catcher thing needs to go away and Tysteve primarily catch 2 out of 3 games. Votto has to start hitting though.

      • Kevin H

        My apologies, thanks for your response though. Enjoy your post

    • MBS

      EDLC’s HR and Double were not strikes, they were too high. The fact that he can go up and get that high pitch, and avoid chasing (for the most part) the low in the dirt ball is amazing. I’m looking forward to seeing what he does when someone makes a mistake to him.

    • VaRedsFan

      The Dodger reliever (Robertson? MLB debut) threw him some fastballs (either 2 or 3) in his 3 pitch K last night. I was shocked, and I’m sure EDLC wasn’t expecting that.

      • MBS

        I can’t remember for sure but I don’t think he took a swing in that AB.

  36. IndyDoug

    If Benson is a rookie (?), then the 5 rookies in last night’s lineup had 9 of Reds’ 13 hits, 6 of 8 runs and 5of the 8 RBI to the tune of .450/.476/.950/1.426! WOW!!

  37. Schneidlywhiplash

    Any of my fellow “old fart” Reds fan…. do the last two games with walk off excitement remind you of the July 1973 3 run HR hit by Hal King to beat the Dodgers 4-3 in the 9th?? I don’t know if I’ve seen Reds fans this excited since then. For the youngsters in July of 73 the Reds trailed the then hated Dodgers by 10 games in the division. The Reds then went on a tear to win the division… Of course this was the early BRM

    • west larry

      Another old fart, I remember it well, what a thrilling time. I thnk those times are back,

  38. Mark A Verticchio

    I am not anti Newman at all, the problem is that he is a role player and Bell finds a way to start him everyday. That is not what he was signed or needed for.

    • David

      Kevin Newman is a 30 year old replacement level player.
      I think he was acquired to plug the SS gap, if Barrero did not hit, until EDLC arrived.

      Well, EDLC is here. Either Elly De La Cruz or Matt McLain can play SS and offer more OPS than either Barrero or Newman.
      I think Barrero could yet live up to his potential, but he needs to PLAY. If not with the Reds, then option him to AAA and let him play everyday there.
      Newman is going to be part of the next contending Reds team. It is time to part ways with him, to clear roster space.
      Myers cannot be DFA’d until he is off the DL and activated. I have no idea what the Reds plan to do with him. If it were my team, I would release him after he is activated. There can’t be any interest in him as a player now.
      Votto still needs time in AAA to get his swing and timing back. about 16 days and counting.
      Henry Ramos, what to do with him? Recall him, release him, keep him at AAA?
      Do we really need three catchers? There are two guys at AAA that are hitting well, if one of the catchers at the ML level goes on the DL.
      I am not so eager to send Salazar back down. They accelerated his advancement for a reason. I think he has talent, but he is still a rookie. He will have bad days. The Reds took a big chance on Alexis Diaz last year, and he responded.

      • David

        Newman is NOT going to be a part of the next Reds’ contending team.

        I have no idea what the guy is like; may be a real prince of a guy. Maybe his lack of playing time in the past few seasons has made him look lousy at the plate. Maybe he will have a really good 2023, and the Reds should keep him as a Ute player. I just wish David Bell was not so obsessed with getting him in the line up all the time.

        (Unless the Reds end up contending this year, then, QED, he has been part of this “contending” team.)

    • Jim t

      He is hitting 270 and he plays good defense around the infield. He gives players a day off. He is a veteran that sets a good example for the youngsters. He is contributing to a team that is contending for a playoff spot.

      Can we enjoy the team’s performances and the fact they are playing games that are relevant.

      • Votto4life

        Jim T I agree. Kevin Newman has value. My only complaint is that he starts every day. I hope we will get to a place where that is not happening. As a utility guy, Jeff Newman is just fine.

      • Jim t

        @Votto4life, I think you’ll see his usage change here soon. With ELDC, India and McClain all playing regularly and a decision on Votto and CES looming he won’t get the opportunities.
        My issue is we are still in the pennant chase and he is outplaying Barrero. I want the lineup that gives me the best chance to win now. If that changes then hold tryouts, but not now.

  39. west larry

    lime ups out. I like it, would rather have Stevenson catching. Small complaint.

  40. MBS

    VS RHP

    McLain (SS) Friedl (CF) India (2B)
    EDLC (3B) CES (1B) Fraley (DH)
    Steer (RF) Benson (LF) Stephenson (C)

    Maile (C) Reynolds (U) Senzel (U) Hopkins (OF)

    VS LHP

    McLain (2B) Friedl (CF) India (DH)
    EDLC (SS) CES (1B) Senzel (LF)
    Steer (RF) Newman (3B) Stephenson (C)

    Maile (C) Benson (OF) Fraley (OF) Hopkins (OF)

    Casali: DFA / Trade (CES’s 40 man and 26 man spot) Someone will need a good catcher, we might even get a bullpen arm from it.
    Myers: DFA (opens up a 40 man spot)

    Barrero: Option (Senzel’s 26 man spot)
    Fairchild: Option (Friedl’s 26 man spot)

    AAA release Martini the OF should be

    Barrero, Fairchild, Siani, Hurtubise Ramos

    Promote Marte to AAA

    1B Votto/Vosler 2B Lopez/Reynolds SS Marte/Reynolds 3B Urbaez/Vosler

    The rotation has been depleted, add Phillips to it.

    Phillips / Stoudt / and whatever patchwork they need to put together to have a semblance of a rotation.