In a game that the Reds likely wished would have been suspended at the time, Baltimore is glad that the game was resumed after a one hour and 44 minute rain delay. A 2-1 game before the tarp was placed on the field turned into a blowout for the Orioles as they beat Cincinnati 10-3 on Monday night.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (41-38)
3 7 1
Baltimore Orioles (48-29)
10 12 0
W: Zimmermann (1-0) L: Williamson (1-1)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After a rain relay pushed the game back 10 minutes, the Reds got right to work. Kevin Newman hit what would have been a home run in Camden Yards just a few years ago, but with the wall in left field pushed back it instead clanked off of the top of the wall in left-center and went for a double. Newman moved to third on a single from Jonathan India and then scored on a single from Spencer Steer. Nick Senzel followed up with a line drive of his own, but he was robbed of extra bases when third baseman Ramon Urias made a diving grab to end the inning.

The bottom of the 2nd inning seemed to be going well for Brandon Williamson. He got some help from TJ Friedl to begin the inning as Friedl made a nice diving catch. The lefty then struck out Cedric Mullins. Williamson then got ahead of Jordan Westburg 0-2 before walking him in what quickly turned into a downpour. Then he walked the next two hitters, too. That turned over the lineup and leadoff hitter Austin Hayes lines a 2-run single into center to put Baltimore up 2-1.

In the bottom of the 3rd inning, after the rain had died down for a bit, it ramped back up and this time the umpires called for the grounds crew and the game went into a delay that lasted on hour and 44 minutes.

When the game resumed Fernando Cruz took over for Brandon Williamson and a runner on first base. He got a line out to begin his outing, but then gave up a single and a walk to load the bases. That brought rookie Jordan Westburg to the plate and he picked up his first big league RBI with a force out. He grounded to Elly De La Cruz who fielded and fired to Jonathan India for the force out, but India then threw the ball by Kevin Newman at first base to allow a second run to score on the play and Baltimore extended their lead to 4-1.

After a shutout 4th inning by Fernando Cruz the Reds turned to Eduardo Salazar to begin the 5th inning. He allowed a single to start the inning to Anthony Santander, but only because TJ Friedl slipped in the wet grass and fell over as he started to run in on the ball before getting up and having it land a few feet in front of him. Salazar then walked Aaron Hicks and Baltimore had two men on to begin the inning. Ramon Urias doubled to center to plate a run, then Cedric Mulls hit a sacrifice fly to bring in another. A wild pitch then brought in another run and it was 7-1 in favor of the Orioles. Jordan Westburg then hit a flare into shallow left field to pick up his first big league hit, but Salazar escaped the inning without allowing any more runs.

The Reds got two of those runs back in the top of the 6th when Spencer Steer hit a long 2-run homer to center field. It was Steer’s 12th of the season and it made it a 7-3 ballgame. Jake Wong entered the game for the bottom of the inning, making his major league debut in the process. He worked around an infield single and a walk to keep the score the same as it was when he took the mound.

That did not repeat itself in the bottom of the 7th when Wong returned to the mound. After a leadoff single was erased after a force out and a caught stealing, things were looking up. But a 2-out single was followed up a walk, ground-rule double that plated a run, and an RBI single that brought in two more and Baltimore went up by seven runs. Wong would get a third inning on the mound and worked around a walk and a single for a scoreless 8th inning.

Former Reds reliever Cionel Perez took over for Baltimore in the top of the 9th and he had to work around a walk and a hit batter to seal the win for the Orioles, but he did just that by snagging a 105 MPH line drive right at him off of the bat of Jonathan India to end the game.

Key Moment of the Game

In the bottom of the 5th inning the Orioles scored three runs on a double, sacrifice fly, and a wild pitch – all in short order – to put the game out of reach.

Notes Worth Noting

The loss was the third in a row for Cincinnati and combined with a win by the Milwaukee Brewers it dropped the Reds to 2nd place – a half game back.

Spencer Steer kept his hot hitting going. In his last three games he’s been on base eight times, homered twice, and driven in six runs.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Baltimore Orioles

Tuesday June 27th, 7:05pm ET

Andrew Abbott (3-0, 1.14 ERA) vs Tyler Wells (6-3, 3.22 ERA)

140 Responses

  1. J

    Bell could literally have slept through this game and I don’t think we’d have noticed any difference.

    • Chris

      Yes Bell seemed really absent tonight, that’s for sure. With that said, Sparky couldn’t have done much with the pitchers that were available tonight. It’s almost getting a bit embarrassing. This team can easily win the division and possibly go deep into the post season if it had just AVERAGE pitching.

      • J

        Sparky wouldn’t have used two relief pitchers who really have no business being in the majors. In 1975, Eastwick pitched 90 innings in 58 games, Borbon pitched 125 innings in 67 games, Carroll pitched 96 innings in 56 games, and McEnany pitched 91 innings in 70 games. Sparky would have used his best pitchers while the game was still winnable and given his offense a chance to win the game. If he had Wong and Salazar on that team, he’d have used them when the Reds were up 11 to 2.

      • greenmtred

        Sparky, like any MLB manager, has to use who is available. There isn’t a trove of good relief pitchers waiting in the pen, and the effective ones are already being worked hard.

      • Chris

        @green, I don’t think @J can grasp that obvious reality.

      • J

        Chris, do you understand that Sparky used basically four relief pitchers, total, all season long, to handle almost every situation that required relief pitchers? And do you understand that Bell isn’t required to use his worst two relief pitchers in winnable games just because they’re on the roster? And would you care to have a debate with me sometime and see which of us can “grasp” all these things?

    • Jim Walker

      Maybe, but it seemed strange to me that Casali and Newman were the first 2 Reds batters in the 7 with the score 7-3, a RH pitcher on the mound for the O’s, and the likes of Benson, Fraley, and Votto available off the Reds bench.

      I can understand wanting to hold back either Votto or Fraley for a multiple run producing situation.

      However what purpose does having the 3rd catcher on the bench serve if they can’t send a high OBP guy like Benson up to the plate (for Casali) to start that inning?

      • Jim Walker

        And part of the answer to my question above is that most nights (including this one) they don’t really have a “3rd catcher” because one of the “catchers” is very often the DH.

        This being the case, why not move one of the “catchers” off the roster and bring in a guy (CES) who projects to be a better DH than the “catcher” they so often as DH?

      • SultanofSwaff

        Stop making sense! It’s just weird that Bell pulled out every stop to attempt to win Sunday’s game yet wouldn’t even attempt half measures to win last night, even though both games have equal value.

      • greenmtred

        Casali had, at game time, a .375 OBP for June.

      • Jim Walker

        @Sultan>> Had to be that aside from having Sims for an inning (one would think), some combination of Salazar and Wong were going to be carrying the mail for up to 6 outs more regardless of the score. Then they ended up having to burn Young anyway at 10-3 or whatever.

      • Jim Walker

        Benson’s June OPB is .476 and he has the potential to create havoc and chaos once he is on.

    • J

      So you’re saying Salazar and Wong were Bells’ best chances to shut down the Orioles’ offense? You think those are the guys Sparky would have used, and not his actual major league pitchers who’ve been pitching pretty well all season? Did you see the games/innings that Sparky had his best four relievers throw when he won a World Series?

      • J

        Sorry – meant to reply to greenmtred above…

      • Chris

        Not sure if you have noticed but with starters going about 2 innings, you can’t keep using the same relievers every night.

      • 2020ball

        You mean his guys who have been pitching A LOT this season? The season isnt over tomorrow, youre silly example of what a guy does in the playoffs holds literally zero water compared to a regular season game in June. Yall would just run the team into the ground and have no one available for any games in august?

  2. Mike Wasserman

    My son just gave me this name for our favorite team:

    The IncREDibles!

    That would look great on hats and t-shirts.
    I think $3 per item royalty from the Red’s ownership would be a reasonable start. Come on IncREDibles, trade a few prospects for a couple of good long relievers and let’s get to the playoffs!

  3. Melvin

    That was a whole lot of fun. lol Losing three in a row after winning 12 in a row kind stinks to say the least. Abbott is basically our ace right now. That’s what aces do. Stop losing streaks. Let’s win tomorrow.

  4. Chris

    By the way, I’ve not had much of a problem with Newman playing, especially against lefties, but in all honesty he’s just not needed anymore. Newman is not needed at SS or 2nd base anymore, which really only puts him at 3rd. 1st should not be an option, as he is ill equipped to play there. With that in mind, Newman is not only a lesser hitter than CES most likely is, but is less useful in the field than CES is. This team needs to move Newman at this point.

    • MBS

      That’s a fair point. If my choice is CES or Newman, I’m taking CES. Newman has been pretty good, so I’m also not knocking him.

      • TR

        Repeat, rinse and repeat. The Reds need CES to be called up considering the weakened state of the starting pitching for at least the next month. Yes, Newman has done well for the Reds, but he’ll fit better with another team. Keep the excitement going & bring up CES.

      • Mario

        Pretty good if your goal is below average

    • 2020ball

      So let it happen then, and allow the team time to do so. Why y’all are so urgent in a long season vexes me.

      • Chris

        Urgent? What do you mean? Sounds to me you’d still have McLain, EDLC, and Abbott still in AAA. Great organizations don’t just sit and wait.

      • 2020ball

        Heh, yeah put words in my mouth sure. You say trade him but if its not tomorrow then dont? I dont understand your point

        Im glad Bell and the team arent panicking over a couple of losses in june.

    • SultanofSwaff

      Newman gifted the Orioles 2 extra outs last night. He has no business playing first every bit as much as Senzel has no business in right field. That’s on Bell.

      • Jim Walker

        Or Krall because Bell doesn’t have CES or Fairchild (or Hopkins or Ramos) to use in those spots and instead has the “3rd catcher”, Newman, and Senzel.

    • MFG

      Newman, Casali and Senzel are being show cased a little right now in my opinion.
      I really like Maile and he has earned more playing time.

  5. RedlegScott

    Well, Steer had a good game. That’s pretty much it.

  6. Melvin

    If you look at the stats our three rookies, McLain, Steer, and De La Cruz are leading the team. Let’s bring up another rookie…CES. An argument can be made he’s outhit all of them and not helping the Reds at all in AAA. If you want exact stats according to the Reds site.

    Steer – .282/.368/.493
    McLain – .317/.375/.528
    De La Cruz – .315/.375 /.562

    CES – .329/.403/.639 48 runs – 72 hits – 15 doubles – 1 triple – 17 home runs – 49 RBI – 25 walks – 3 HBP – 1 Sac Fly – 1 IBBB – All in AAA the same as McLain and EDLC earlier this year. He’s played 1B, DH, 3B, RF, and LF.

    We’ve lost three in a row. We’re battling for 1st place with a depleted pitching staff that needs all the runs it can get………..I think we could have used him the last three games…and the rest of the season.

      • earmbrister

        My argument would be that CES is NOT a RFr or LFr (only has ONE career game at each of those two positions – gee, I wonder why).

        There’s no room for CES currently and he needs to play every day. Explore trade options for Senzel or possibly Newman sure, but those moves still don’t have him playing every day if he gets called up. Catching depth is valuable (see last year’s Reds for some truly absymal production from the position): get something in return via trade if you want to move Casali or Maile. The trade of a catcher would remove the CES logjam. Meanwhile, it will take a serious injury to EDLC, McLain, India, Votto, or a catcher in order for CES to be called up and play every day.

      • Melvin

        Sorry earmbrster. Just don’t buy that there’s not enough room for CES to play most every day.

      • earmbrister

        No need to be sorry, you just need to find a place for him to play. Are you going to sit EDLC, McLain, or India? I’m not. Are you going to sit Votto? I’m not. Are you going to sit Steer? I’m not. He ain’t an outfielder, so where is CES playing on an everyday basis?

      • Melvin

        earmbrister – cut/trade/demote a guy off the team to make room for CES, give me the players you want to play that night, and I’ll give you my lineup. 🙂 I’ll give you one to start. Let’s say we trade Senzel.

        India – 2B
        Fredl – CF
        McLain – SS
        EDLC – 3B
        CES – 1B
        Votto – DH
        Fraley – RF
        Steer – LF
        Stephenson – C

        That leaves Benson, Maile, Casali, Newman

        If you want to work Benson in then each guy not catching gets a day off every seven/eight days. As I said, Stephenson either catches or sits. All kinds of variations to get it done and this batting order not set in stone of course. It’s not that hard.

      • earmbrister

        It’s not that hard if you bench one of the hottest hitters on the team. Will Benson has an OPS of:

        Last 30 games: .924
        Last 15 games: 1.224
        Last 7 games: 1.600

        Of course we can expect CES to outperform those numbers, right? So yeah, you’re kinda proving my point. He’s not replacing EDLC, McLain, India, Votto, Steer, AND Benson. And defensively CES would be the 4th or 5th best 3Bman, while at 1B he’s probably the 3rd best defensively. Barring an injury or a surprising trade, CES looks like he’s waiting on a September callup, whether some fans like it or not.

        In 2024, you probably will see him sharing time at 1B and DH for the Reds.

      • Melvin

        earmbrister – bring him up. Rotate guys a day off every 7/8 days. Make our bench and our team STRONGER.

    • CI3J

      Sadly, I don’t think we’ll see CES until Newman is traded.

      Common sense says to get rid of one of the catchers, but the Reds seem determined to be one of the few teams in MLB to carry three of them.

  7. Jason Franklin

    We need to stop believing this team will win with these starters. Stop fooling ourselves. Hopefully ownership will see how many people show up with a winning team and put some money into the free agent market this off season.

    • CI3J

      I think that has always been the plan. Griffey, Votto, and Moose money is coming off the books, which means the Reds can realign resources to set themselves up for the next half decade, at least.

    • jon

      Who believes we will win with these starters?

      • 2020ball

        I do. It should be the area they focus on to improve 100% this deadline/offseason.

  8. CFD3000

    Key moment for me was the rain in the bottom of the 2nd and the umpires making Williamson pitch through it. He had bases empty and an 0-2 count, then the rains came. Three walks and a single followed and it was obvious he was struggling to locate. I thought he looked pretty good when it was dry, but having to pitch through a deluge and then having to leave the game for the rain delay killed any chance of a longer, effective outing. Right now Williamson and Abbott are the only even moderately reliable starters the Reds have. It’s a shame one of them never had a chance to pitch last night. Tonight’s game with Abbott starting will be huge to stop this mini skid. If he struggles… I don’t want to think about it! Go Reds

    • Jim Walker

      Added into Wiliamson’s situation was that because of the rain (or some other reason), the pitch signaling gadget was working correctly.

      Casali was allowed to come to the Reds bench at one point to get a new ear piece.

      Then later Williamson couldn’t seem to hear the signals. On one or more pitches with the clock down under 5 seconds, it appeared Williamson just stepped onto the rubber and heaved a pitch toward the plate to avoid an automatic ball.

      • Jim Walker

        ….the pitch signaling gadget was *NOT* working correctly.

      • MK

        When that happens, if they are truly trying to speed up the game, have the catcher put down fingers the old fashioned way and fix it after the inning in the dugout.

    • SultanofSwaff

      Absolutely. Williamson had good control until the rain. Despite Welsh’s nonsense about those conditions favoring the pitcher, BW clearly couldn’t grip the ball. He was well on his way to an effective start, alas. To me, by not calling a rain delay (heck, just take the teams off the field for a few minutes but don’t cover it!) the umps placed the Reds at a competitive disadvantage.

  9. VaRedsFan

    The Reds had clawed back to 7-3 with 9 outs to go . Certainly not insurmountable for this team. The Orioles had a righty in the game.

    Bell opted not to pinch hit for Casali leading off the inning, or Newman, the next man up, with Benson, Fraley, or Votto.

    It’s always possible that we didn’t have inside information on all 3 of the lefty batters on the bench.

    • old-school

      It was their turn to play and get at bats.

      • Jim Walker

        Or be showcased as trade bait. 😉

  10. west larry

    Let’s move on and forget about yesterday’s loss. I feel a lot better about tonight’s game. The reds have Abbott pitching and Baltimore is starting a right-handed pitcher. I know, the reds still have a huge problem in the starting rotation. Time for a trade.

    • Tar Heel Red

      I’m sure Nick Krall is on the phone looking for help but the Reds seem to have accepted their fate for this year and are going to suffer through the immediate future with little to no pitching. It’s a shame, too, because they had a really good chance to take the next step this year without selling off the future. Unfortunately by the time Greene, Lodolo, etc come off the IL the team will no longer be in contention.

      • Tomn

        I sure hope he’s looking. Need SP help bad but I fear any trade will be very costly.

      • Votto4life

        Nick Krall should have been on the phone last winter looking for starting pitching. Coming into the 2023 season, the Reds had three rookie starting pitchers, each with barely over 100 innings pitched. It didn’t take a pitching guru to figure out, that the Reds needed much more pitching than they had coming into 2023.

        It was completely foreseeable that the starting pitching was going to be a problem this season and instead Nick Krall wasted $7.5 million dollars on Wil Meyers.

        The Reds have a five year window to win a championship. The failure to acquire starting pitching this past off-season has likely cost the Reds one of those five years.

  11. SteveAReno

    The rain was really hard on our pitchers according to sports news accounts. Mound was soft, ball was slippery and too much water really hurt our staff (except for Fernando Cruz). If it wasn’t for all that rain off and on. Don’t ask me how the Orioles staff didn’t feel any of that 🙂

  12. Mark A Verticchio

    Let’s please get off show casing Newman for trade bait, you are not going to get anything worth having for Newman or Caseli.

    • MBS

      I’m not sure about that, Casali might be a bag of balls, but Newman could be a bullpen arm.

    • MFG

      Agree but it will open up a few spots on the roster.

  13. Tomn

    Newman and Casali are sunk costs. Let em go if we can’t get anything for them. Bring up CES and whoever eelse us most that fits our greatest need.

  14. Steve Schoenbaechler

    As I stated, you have to consider trends.

    The trend with this team has been, after any kind of winning streak, or even something like 11 wins of 14 games, they will lose anywhere from 3-5, then get back on track.

    Let’s see if the trend continues.

    • Rob

      In theory I might agree. But I can’t see this being a winning approach from a mental perspective. Being 6 runs behind, getting your brains beat out, etc. The Reds players see this and it can not possibly be motivating or emboldening. If we continue scoring 8-9 runs a game, we have a chance. But we already are on Louisville’s 11th and 12th best pitchers. It is really sad that we are not doing anything about it. We all know this Division is for the taking but we need 3 solid starting pitchers. Not world class but Miley’s and Discos. I know management didn’t expect us to be this good this fast but this pitching staff was assembled on a shoestring budget and poorly planned. Now management and fans are in a bind. Do we press the Contend button and trade for the pitching we need? Or do we press the Patience button and watch this season turn into 75 wins in the Hope that next year will offer us a better opportunity ….more than 6 games over 500 in late June? Neither approach offers us any guarantees.

      • Still a Red

        I’m not sure things were poorly planned. Lodolo wouldn’t be expected to go down. Nor Greene. And who would have thought Ashcraft would just crash. Lively was descent and now he’s out for a while. Abbott was in the wings and brought up and now the ace.

        Management says they have made the switch from holding pat to buying to address the pitching situation, but you gotta find the right deal. Whose got pitching they don’t need. You’d have to look to Oakland or KC or DC who know they aren’t going anywhere. And, it’ll be hard to lose any of our young offensive talent. Senzel isn’t going to bring much, neither is Barreo, Hopkins, or Fairchild. Maybe Newman.
        Maybe if the team can limp along and stay close in the division, and Lodolo really can come back in August along with Greene, and the offensive doesn’t give up…maybe a late season push can seal the deal.

      • Votto4life

        Still a Red,

        Coming into the 2023 Season:

        Hunter Greene had 120 career innings pitched
        Nick Lodolo had 105 career innings pitched
        Graham Ashcraft had 103 career innings pitched

        And yet, these three starters, who are coming off of their rookie seasons, were expected to carry the bulk of the Reds innings this season.

        How can you then say that you are not sure things were poorly planned?

      • Still a Red

        I didn’t say we should have expected great things from them, but I think it is safe to say we expected more innings. Lodolo started well until shin spints affected him. Greene seemed to have found a groove before his hip went out on him. Ashcraft had a great start…I don’t think its fair to say we should have expected him to go soooo bad for soooo long as a sophmore. Lively and Weaver were to supply more veteran performance. The Reds, nor RLN, planned for the Reds to be in the hunt mid-season.

  15. SultanofSwaff

    Taking a season long perspective, the frequent use of the Louisville shuttle for pitchers is interesting. The strategy seems to be to game the rules in order to use these ‘non-essential’ personnel to cover as many low leverage innings as possible in the hopes of saving your best weapons for winnable games. In a sense you’re doubling the size of your pitching staff…..quantity over quality.

    In the absence of a capable starting rotation, it seems the logical thing to do.

  16. Will the Red

    Anyone explain why, with all the first base options on the team, Bell had Newman, who’d never started there, at least in the majors, play there?! Cost us at LEAST 2 runs, and Todd Frazier (on the radio call – over talked a bit, but was pretty impressive in total) called out a few times where a person that’s PLAYED 1st wouldn’t have made the same mistakes. If they so wanted to give Votto the night off, what about Ty Steve, or Steer? Argh, this team still can’t get out of its own way sometimes.

    • VaRedsFan

      It’s a shame, because Newman is a good bench piece to start against a lefty, but he has fouled up 3 routine plays in his last two starts at 1st.

      Senzel, who’s also better vs. leftys, is legit defensively at 3B. So that leave Newman without a home on lefty day, unless he went to DH.

      DH would be fine, until the pitcher changes hands.

  17. Mark Moore

    Pitching through the rain with gear malfunctioning and then the rain delay that knocked out Williamson (who was battling because of said rain) made a mess out of things. I realize the O’s had to deal with the same things, but I think we took the brunt of that struggle.

    • lost11found

      A situation like this favors the team with the deeper bullpen, which give three tough games against ATL, the Reds probably didn’t have last night.

      But that’s what a grounds crew can do for the home team. “Sure, Blue. we can get 5 innings in before the rains come. *Rain dumps* Oops, field not playable now for 90+ minutes.”

      Unrelated note. Anyone else watch the CWS over the last three days? Krazy games with a K. A nail-biter first game into extras, followed by two blowouts by >10 runs, when not a single team had scored more than 7 in Omaha.

      Would love to see the skenes kid drop to the Reds, but everyone seems to think Texas will pick him, and it’d be unlikely he’d fall three more spots.

      Any pre-draft articles in the works for publishing over here, or is all that ink over at

    • Chris

      But the O’s didn’t have to deal with the same things. Williamson had to pitch in the 2nd and 3rd innings in a virtual rainstorm, and when the O’s were pitching the rain seemed to literally stop. It was not remotely the same. There is clearly an argument to be had on whether rain favors the pitcher or the hitter, but last night it clearly favored the hitters, because Williamson couldn’t locate once the rain hit.

      • Votto4life

        Tired of the Rain excuse. . Good pitchers find ways to battle through disruptions like that..poor pitchers tend to let it overwhelm them.

  18. Roger Garrett

    Its very easy to jump on Bell about the things he does or doesn’t do in a game or an inning.That will always be the case for him and any other manager.He can justify what he does or doesn’t do and it will be up to Krall to ask those questions and decide if he is satisfied with the answers but that won’t take place until the end of the year.I didn’t like several things he did in Sunday’s game and several tonight but he doesn’t work for me and my opinion doesn’t count.

    • Harry Stoner

      Sure your opinion counts, Roger.


      Keep bringing it.

      This is an online discussion group, not a board meeting.

      We’re all just popping off opinions.

      Mine are totally ‘worthless’ too.

      That’s the fun of it.

  19. TJ

    Too bad Bell didn’t pull a Tony Larussa last night. I remember when Tony used an opener against the Reds and Dusty went with his starter. Within an inning or so the rains came and Tony still had his starter where Dusty had to go to his bullpen. I guess you have to be a meteorologist as well as a mamger

    • VaRedsFan

      I remember that one. Score a point for Tony in that exchange, as much as I hate to admit it.

  20. docproc

    I’m here in Baltimore and sat through two long rain delays and didn’t leave (beautiful) Camden Yards until after midnight.
    Forgive me if I’m repeating things that have already been said, but Bell seemed to wave the white flag early. Not only did he (understandably) run scrub pitchers out there all night, but he also didn’t bring our lefty hitters in when the O’s switched to righty relievers. Newman and Senzel stayed in the game against righties and we never saw Votto, Fraley, or Benson. Like I said, looked like Bell gave up early. Not fun for Reds fans who made the trip to Baltimore.

    • Harry Stoner

      Overheard on RLN: “No one wants to win as badly as David Bell.”

    • J

      What message is he sending the team when he doesn’t use every possible weapon to try to win every game? It’s not as if the guys on the bench are thinking the team’s best chance is to allow Casali and Newman to remain in the game. They all know he’s basically saying “I don’t care about this one. Sometimes you just have to accept defeat.” Players may like playing for him, which is nice, but a lot of employees like bosses who demand very little of them and set expectations very low.

  21. Tim

    Sure would be nice to have Castillo in the rotation. He’s having a great year. Besides, how comical would it be to have Abbot and Castillo?

    • PatTheBat

      Fantastic! Have to go find “Who’s On First” routine on YouTube or wherever … current answer of course (with Seinfeld derision) … Newman!

  22. DataDumpster

    Just following up with @J on a comparison with Sparky’s 1975 team to this team. Despite being the “Dr. Hook” of the time, his top 4 relievers had a total of 251 appearances for 402 IP. Remember also that was basically the bullpen period. The team only used 12 pitchers in 1975. David Bell’s bullpen has 5 relievers used most often (Diaz, Farmer, Young, Gibault, and Sims) with 34, 36, 34, 36, and 29 appearances, respectively. Calculating the IP and normalizing them to a 162 game season, we get 346 appearances for 344 IP. Yes, the game has changed, but considering that Sparky didn’t use 30-35 pitchers per season like Bell and players seemed to have less injuries then, you could still argue that Bell’s top 5 are more overutilized than Sparky’s top 4. Than again, “Dr. Hook” have his top 5 starters with a minimum of 130 IP in 1975. This team will be lucky to have 1 or 2 make that mark. Sparky had a workhorse closer, a decent veteran long man, and two rookies/youngsters. Bell has similar talent (but used less efficiently) but I’ll bet that Sparky’s team didn’t routinely hit the top 5 in ERA and IP per inning like this club. Still, I hope The Bull holds back on any big and overpriced commitments for pitching given that most all other competitive clubs are riding in the same boat. I suppose they can move back the pitch clock to 20 seconds next year?

    • J

      Sparky obviously had much better starters to work with, so he had less need for relief pitchers generally. (And of course he’d allow any starter to keep pitching into the 8th if the guy was pitching effectively, which helped the bullpen. I don’t think he’d usually take a guy out who was cruising along, striking lots of guys out, just because he’d thrown an arbitrary number of pitches.) But he routinely allowed ALL his relief pitchers to pitch more than one inning at a time, which is one of the ways he kept the other guys “fresh.” If he needed 3 innings covered, he’d probably use two of his top guys, and then the other two top guys were able to pitch the next day if needed. It was, as you said, more efficient than Bell’s insistence on removing a starter after X pitches and then using three or four pitchers to get those last nine outs, and then trying to use a different set of three or four pitchers the next day. Eventually you’ve got lots of guys pitching two or three days in a row and having to use guys who shouldn’t even be in the majors.

      • Chris

        I agree with you on this topic “J”, but the game has changed on this philosophy. Bell along with every other manager typically uses relief pitchers for one inning only. I disagree with that sort of mindset, but for some reason all managers run their bullpens that way. Seems to me multiple innings might burn said pitcher, but it would free others up. Also, I just feel that the more pitchers you choose to use on any given night, your are more likely to have one that isn’t on his game; in other words, ride the hot hand, especially now that DH is in both leagues.

    • Votto4life

      Sparky Anderson had four or five hall of fame players. Three league MVPs, rookie of The Year., numerous gold Gloves and all-star players. Sparky had the greatest defensive catcher on the planet and the best offensive second baseman of all time. Sparky’s team won Two World Series Championships , Four National League Pennants and five divisional titles.

      The only comparison between the Big Red Machine and the team this year is the word “Cincinnati” printed across their chest.

  23. Tomn

    The game w the Os was just ugly last night. The rain just added to the ugliness. Williamson ne er was able to adjust to the rain and it really looked like the ump squeezed him too. Our hitters, aside from steer looked befuddled by the Os pitchers. Or maybe they were just impatient then trying to do too much after falling behind.

    Just hope tonight they are more themselves.

    But we really need another strong sp or two.

  24. Votto4life

    I have been trying to figure out who this current Reds team reminded me of. I was thinking of Reds teams of the past, but just could not pinpoint it. Now I know!

    With all of the young players coming together at once the 2023 Reds remind me of the Cleveland Indians of the 1990s. Cleveland had Jim Thome, Manny Ramirez and Albert Belle, scored a ton of runs. It was a very exciting team.

    Like this Reds team, Cleveland also had a weak rotation. They basically just out scored their opponents.

  25. Daytonnati

    The Athletic has an interview C. Trent did with Shawn Pender, Reds’ VP of Player Development today. While the complete interview is worth it, this particular Q&A about CES not being with the club was interesting, if not worthy of Catch-22:

    C. Trent: “What about Christian Encarnacion-Strand?”

    Shawn Pender: “I think it’s always the hardest thing for someone to do. I’ve talked to Christian, he’s a tremendous kid and he’s also a tremendous competitor. He had such a great spring training and put himself in a position to really challenge, particularly with Joey (Votto)’s injury, he may have made the club to start. As it turned out, it didn’t work out that way. By the time Joey was ready to come back, Christian was in full relevance and he wasn’t going to be a fit. That’s the biggest adjustment, to put up the numbers he’s put up and to not really have a legitimate opportunity. The problem is the only legitimate opportunity is going to be a September call-up or if someone else that’s a first baseman, third baseman, or DH, gets hurt. Then you could bring him up. Or when the rosters expand. I’m sure we’re going to have to do that at that point because he’s earned it so much. It’s got to be hard. Being patient with that can’t be easy. It’s one thing if you’re hitting .265 with 12 or 13 home runs, but this dude’s hitting .320, .330, knowing that people are pitching around him because other guys have done so well they moved up, and here’s a guy who is continuing to produce at a top level and has played a really good first base and third base. He’s got to improve, but man, everything we’ve asked him to approve he’s attacked and done. He’s going to get there and he’s going to be a hell of a player when he gets there. We have to keep him as patient as we can. I don’t want him to lose that fire to get there.

    • old-school

      Joey Votto and the 3rd catcher are blocking CES. Pretty clear cut. Reds are not deviating from their Tyler Stephenson DH’s more than he catches posture and they are going to play Votto at 1b/DH a lot and they arent DFA’ ing Newman or Casali to open up a spot on the 26 man for CES to play partially or get a few at bats at DH. For all the OF calls, You cant take a corner IF in the minors and make him an OF on the fly in MLB during a pennant race. IF CES is the future first baseman( which I believe he is) he is stuck waiting for circumstances to change. With all the soft tissue injuries and the length of the season, something will happen in the next few weeks to create his opportunity.

      That said, Reds’ Pitchers have given up 37 runs(10/8/7/10) in the last 4 games.
      Can CES pitch?

      • VaRedsFan

        Ty not DH’ing tonight. DH is CES’s spot, as well as 1B on lefty days.
        1B/DH with Votto on righty days.

        Not many are saying that Ty can either catch more, which he would have to, if Casali were DFA’d , and DH less (none).

        That’s my solution.

    • SultanofSwaff

      It’s like he’s insinuating Votto’s presence is the sole roadblock… if there is no plausible way to get him meaningful playing time any other way. *screams into pillow*

    • Melvin

      ” We have to keep him as patient as we can. I don’t want him to lose that fire to get there.”

      Ridiculous. Mind games. He CAN be up right now playing most every day. It’s insulting to CES and to the fans. Baloney.

      • old-school

        Where is CES going to play without DFA-ing a 3rd catcher and playing Stephenson 7/10 games at C? 1b and DH are blocked. The DH and Steer positonal flexibility and handedness against lefty pitching are allowing Bell to rotate his 26 guys and avoid logjams elsewhere.

        1b- Votto /Steer/newman 10 games out of 10
        2b -india/McLain 10/10
        SS- EDLC/McLain 10/10
        3b- EDLC/Steer/Senzel 10/10
        Lf- Fraley/Steer 10/10
        CF Friedl most of the time
        RF- Senzel/Benson 10/10
        C-Stephenson/Maile/Casali 10/10

        DH Stephenson 4/10
        Steer 2/10
        India 2/10
        Votto 2/10

      • Melvin

        There are ways to do it every game and give the regulars a day off every eight games or so. For example in tonight’s lineup. Move Steer to LF. CES to DH. Benson is good but not near as good as CES or Steer. Stephenson doesn’t DH anymore or very little. He either catches or gets a day off like tonight.

      • Melvin

        It’s not that hard. Certainly not as hard as they’re making it out to be. Not by a long shot.

      • Melvin

        You are correct old-school. Someone has to go. ANYONE of Newman, Maile, Casali, Senzel, or even Benson are not worth keeping CES down and out of the lineup. Make a decision. WIN. GO FOR IT. Quit messing around with this ridiculous baloney.

      • Old-school

        @ Melvin

        Im not disagreeing with you on CES

        But- stephenson has DH’d 10/24 games in june- overwhelmingly more than anyone else . Dh is being used by 7-8’guys in the other days

        Stephenson at Dh 40% of the time plus rotational use of DH with india steer mcLain Votto Newman blocks CES.

        Votto and Steer block CES at first base

      • VaRedsFan


        Ty not DH’ing tonight. DH is CES’s spot, as well as 1B on lefty days.
        1B/DH with Votto on righty days.

        Not many are saying that Ty can either catch more, which he would have to, if Casali were DFA’d , and DH less (as in none).

        That’s my solution.

      • Old-school

        @ VA

        Im not defending Reds

        I want CES up and playing 1b and DH 8/10 games

        Im simply pointing out Reds are utilizing DH to make things work everywhere else rotationally and arent committing to a 2 man DH

        Rotating 7 guys gives them flexibility to continue 3 headed catcher and continue Votto as primary 1b and continue India as primary 2b while rotating McLain and EDLC at SS with 2b/3b

        Closing down DH to Votto and CES blows up reds plan with 3 Catchers and Newman and Senzel get tossed asidenand crunches 2b/SS/3b. Steer is allowing that to work right now. CES forces Reds to make roster decisions they dont want to make in june

    • Harry Stoner

      Very informative and depressing interview.

      Confirms my suspicion that the Reds have no idea what to do with CES.

      They had none in ST and have none now.

      He’s going to twist in the wind for two more months because the FO has no imagination and no plan.

      Meyers, Newman, Senzel, Vosler, Chad, Fairbanks, Reynolds, 3 catchers took priority.

      “Have patience, son, today is still not your day!”

    • Daytonnati

      Exactly. Baghdad Bob-esque. 🙂

  26. Rednat

    I love Joey Votto as a person but I think it is time to designate Spencer Steer as our new first baseman. Of the 3 rookies he may have the biggest upside due to his ability to hit the off speed stuff. Does he not remind you old timers of Toney Perez? just quietly goes about his business. But he is on pace to hit 20 homeruns and drive in 100rbi. Plus I think he places a really strong first base

    • JayTheRed

      I really like Steer. Guy has been pretty consistent both offensively and defensively. I feel like he doesn’t get enough credit on this team of big-name prospects. He doesn’t strike out a whole lot either. I’m hoping the Reds don’t pick up Votto’s option year unless he continues to produce well this year. Votto has done better than I expected thus far, but it’s a really small sample size. Time will tell.

    • TR

      Spencer Steer comes across to me as a solid ballplayer. Perhaps a little rough defensively now, but he’s young and will improve. Steer will take over from Votto at 1st. base. You make a good comparison with one of my all time favorite Reds, ‘Mr. RBI’, Tony Perez.

    • DataDumpster

      Yep, I like Steer a lot and at 1B. I would rate him as better than India, more consistent and with steadier defense. Good clutch hitting and doesn’t let too many pitch mistakes get past him. Surprising power. Quietly gets the job done.
      Not a good time to be CES. Probably already regretting the amount of money he has not received by not being promoted. All along, it has been eminently doable. Look what McClain and Delacruz have contributed to this team. Do you want more of the same with CES or what you rather fiddle around endlessly on how you “need” 3 catchers, Neumann and all the rest of the veterans to delay the future?
      Is the Bull secretly plotting a bombshell trade for a top notch SP with CES as the sweetener? Seems like the current situation is just not tenable for much longer (but I am not advocating such a trade).

  27. JayTheRed

    if you had to choose one of our top 10 prospects to give up to get some desperately needed starting pitching, who do you give up?

    I’d say almost anyone that is AA or under. We have 100 really good shortstops, One or two could go and we still would be in good shape.

    • Optimist

      If you’re looking at Doug’s list, 3 of the top 10 are on the Reds – I’m keeping the rest. If you look at #11-25, 2 of those are on the Reds – I’d keep Cabrera, Acosta, Jorge, Hector and Duno. There may be value in the others. There’s also value in AAA, and, of course, on the 26-man roster.

      Plenty to trade, and the GM will certainly do so – just a question of who and when for what.

    • Votto4life

      I think Arroyo is an an example of a player who the Reds could trade and get a decent return. I don’t think the Reds system would miss Arroyo all that much.

      • Optimist

        Certainly true, I’d just prefer to keep him. Hinds seems a very interesting one, though. Is this a small sample size, or could some other GM really think it’s real, and, if so, overpay for it. Boyle may be the opposite – don’t think many value him much at all, and time is running out, but I’m in the let’s keep waiting and seeing camp.

    • BK

      I would look to offer Fairchild (he’s a starting outfielder on a number of teams). Barrero, Hopkins, and Hinds. Three are Major League ready, Hinds should be next year. None have near-term paths to playing time with the Reds. Newman, Senzel, and a catcher should be available from the big league roster. Some combination of these players should net a 4/5 starter and/or decent reliever on an expiring contract.

      To trade higher value prospects, including those at A+, A, or Rookie levels, I would want a good (#1 or #2) starter with team control. Like the Reds last year, starting pitchers that fit this criteria will almost certainly require an overpay–I don’t think the Reds should do that. The team is not good enough that the Reds should start making their best prospects available.

  28. Votto4life

    I have always felt at some point the Reds would move away from carrying three catchers. I always assumed Luke Mailie or Curt Casali would go. Now however, I think Tyler Stephenson is really the odd man out.

    Tyler Stephenson doesn’t hit well enough to be the Reds regular DH and he doesn’t handle pitchers well enough to be their starting catcher.

    The Reds obviously don’t have a great deal of confidence in him by putting him behind the plate or a regular basis.

    Tyler Stephenson still has a few more years of team control. Maybe he could land the Reds a couple of starting pitching prospects or a good bullpen arm or two.

    • BK

      All good observations about how the catching situation appears right now … I believe Stephenson’s shoulder surgery has had lingering effects. Shoulders are complex and very important to baseball skills. The Reds anticipated a slow recovery and compensated with the 3-catcher decision. Pre-injury, Stephenson was the team’s best hitter.

      Behind the plate, he’s right around league average in all facets per Statcast data indicating criticism of his defense is overstated by most on RLN.

      It comes down to hitting, and Stephenson remains below average. If the Reds believe he’s still rebuilding from surgery–he’s a keeper. If this is the case, they could option Stephenson and let him rebuild/recover in the minors. There’s little reason for him to DH, and we have better-hitting options in the minors.

      WAR profiles like Casali’s defense. Statcast has him average to slightly above average defensively. But his bat is horrendous and underlying metrics (exit velocity, hard hit rates, etc.) are well below his prior years. So, I don’t think his bat will rebound.

      From my perspective, he should go, and Maile and Stephenson split time at Catcher and never DH allowing the Reds to improve the hitter in the DH spot each game. The hitting from catchers is so poor across the league that having Maile and Stephenson share the #9 spot in the lineup will not derail the Reds. Having two of them in the lineup is another story.

      • MBS

        @BK, “From my perspective, he should go, and Maile and Stephenson split time at Catcher and never DH allowing the Reds to improve the hitter in the DH spot each game.”

        That is also my view as well.

        As for the idea of trading Stephenson, you’d only be getting pennies on the dollar for him. If we end up trading him it should be after he regains his form. I wouldn’t be opposed to sign Maile to a 3 year deal. If we moved Stephenson Maile could step in and be a quality C. If we didn’t move Stephenson he’d be a great affordable backup.

      • VaRedsFan

        I agree with this BK…good post. It was my solution too a little higher up in the thread.

      • Votto4life

        Good point. I would be fine with the Reds keeping Stephenson and Maile. As long as, they are used almost exclusively as catchers. The team have much better options at DH.

        I was just thinking that Stephenson might bring a bit more back if the Reds decided to trade him. But, I am not even sure what type of return you could even get for Stephenson.

        I certainly wouldn’t consider extending Tyler Stephenson, at this point, unless it is for a very team friendly deal. Same goes for Jonathon India as well.

    • Optimist

      Is there a consensus view on the 3 catchers roles and abilities? I sense that TySteve is the roughest defensively, in both senses of holding runners/throw them out, and the framing/game calling issues. Is that so? Are Maile and Casali that much better in either or both? IIRC Casali is very highly thought of as a future manager in the traditional catcher to manager path. Is that so?

      How about Chuckie – is his defense/framing/calling at a good or better MLB level? His offensive production this season may well be a small sample size, but any improvement from his time with the Reds last year may have big effects.

      As an outlier opinion I wonder if they move both Maile and Casali (or release Casali and retain him as a coach), promote Chuckie, and keep TySteve’s bat in a DH/C role. He’s still got the injury to fully recover from, which should add the expected power value to the lineup, and he would be very valuable as a more than just a backup, but not a full-time catcher.

      I know last season’s Catcher shortage scared them, but the overreaction needs to be curtailed very soon.

      • Optimist

        Look slike BK answered most of my questions, except is Chuckie worthwhile, if they can get any return for Maile? I’d be concerned about re-signing Maile to anything beyond just above minimal time and $, both from the age and production aspects. His defense is not that superior, is it?

  29. Redgoggles

    Call me crazy, but I’m satisfied with “competing” this year without selling future assets, which has – and likely will continue to – hamstring our ability to build winning teams together over the long haul. Selling assets now will only weaken/shorten our competitive window which is opening a year earlier than expected.

    The best idea is to take on contracts/salaries rather than have to give up prospect capital. Krall has already said there is payroll flexibility, and I would guess so considering they cut payroll pretty dramatically and now attendence is trending upward. If they can do that, let’s go! Of course, it’s always easier to spend someone elses money.

    We are in a stretch of playing Atlanta, @Baltimore, San Diego with a minor league rotation. No trade is going to help that. Maybe some of the Louisville churn will help us stay afloat until Greene, Lodollo, etc. come back.

    I hate to think of giving up quality prospect capital for an emergency stopgap to squeak into the playoffs this year with no SP horses to actually win, considering how vital – and refreshing – they have been to this years team. Not to mention cost controlled.

    2023 has always been about the sorting and development. Please stay the course. It’s working!

    • Votto4life

      Not meant for you Redgoogles, but I never understood the whole “This season is about sorting” thing.

      The Farm system, Spring training those things are about “sorting”. Sorting should take place before a player ever steps foot on a Major League Baseball diamond.

      The whole “This season is about sorting” thing is simply a built in excuse for losing.

      • Redgoggles

        Maybe I should have used “adjusting” instead of sorting. Minor leaguers adjusting to the major leagues, both offensively and defensively. Pitchers building up their arms and learning what it takes to be successful at this level. Organization figuring out which of the prospects will pan on and when to understand holes and needs by giving them opportunity to exhibit their abilities at this level.

        This can only be done so much on the farm. We all expect these rookies to get better, right? It’s unsurprising when they hit walls or limits, early on, right? That makes 2023 a year of sorting, or adjusting in my mind.

        Not an excuse for losing, but laying a proper foundation for a long term winning culture. And I think that is something that we as a fanbase crave.

      • Indy Red Man

        Sorting, in my mind anyway, means experimenting with unproven players to find out what they can do and where they fit in moving forward.

    • Optimist

      I agree, both with this and your follow-up note.The only caveat is that there may be great suffering for a few weeks, but there will be trade potential soon. Flexen DFA’ed today, and likely similar moves coming – the Reds will need to jump on one of those, AND make a trade at least for relief help.

      They can do all that without losing much, if any value, in the farm system.

      If they just get some pitching help, they can let the offense determine how far they go this season. If everyone “adjusts” well, the division is weak and who knows what happens. If not, they stay very well positioned going into the off season.

      Still, the next few series could get ugly.

  30. Mark Moore

    I see the line-up is posted. Provided the storms clear out as the predictive radar indicates, we should be in pretty good shape.

    • J

      I like all the players in the lineup, but I sure wish I understood how India is a #3 hitter right now and Benson is a #8 hitter right now. (But it’s a nice problem to have — a guy hitting 8th who could just as easily be hitting 1 through 7.)

      • Harry Stoner

        Some folks here have opined that where someone hits in the order doesn’t matter…and also doesn’t matter to the player.

        I find that POV odd.

        It would seem obvious that it does….McLain seems locked in at #2…but also some pride and prestige associated with it.

        JV made a distinct point of saying “I’m batting sixth in this lineup….”after years of hitting #3 or #4, but that he accepted the new reality.

        I think India is hitting #3 for reasons of expected / hoped for productivity but also as a bit of respect.

        I agree…I miss him at #1 while acknowledging Frieda’s fine hitting there.

        Who would you like hitting 3rd? Steer? Fraley?

        No argument there.

        Maybe Steer is at #5 to ‘protect’ EDLC in the classic sense.

        But I’m also not sure if #4 spot is for Elly long term.

        There is a heavy hitter in Louisville who seems cut out for the job, but we’ve just read a lengthy mealy mouthed set of excuses from the FO as to why he’s not.

        I’m okay with Benson low in the order for now…takes off some pressure and potentially he gets on for TF and McLain.

  31. Indy Red Man

    India is hitting .219 with risp. 0-7 with bases loaded 0 rbis, and .206 with 2 out risp.
    Steer is at .268 risp, 2-7 bases loaded 4 rbis, and .296 w/2 out risp

    I am most definitely not one of these “the lineup doesn’t really matter” crowd

  32. Big Red Tsunami

    Bottom line with these Reds is they need to fix the starting rotation. Asking the offense to score 6+ runs every night just to have a chance to win is unsustainable. Newman, Senzel, and Casali need to be dealt/packaged to secure at least one rotation spot and eat up some innings if they are going to have a shot at the playoffs.

  33. Votto4life

    These HP umpires seem to get worse with each passing day.