The Cincinnati Reds were up 6-1 after the top of the 3rd inning, but the Cubs weren’t ready to roll over and battled their way back. Neither starting pitcher made it through the 4th inning of the game and the Reds bullpen held on by the thinnest of threads for a 6-5 win in Chicago that put Cincinnati further ahead in the division.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (59-49) 6 8 0
Chicago Cubs (53-53)
5 8 0
W: Farmer (3-4) L: Stroman (10-8) SV: Diaz (32)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After the Reds went down in order in the top of the 1st inning, the Cubs put pressure on Andrew Abbott right away as Nico Hoerner led off with a double. Cincinnati’s lefty didn’t let that get to him as he retired the next three batters in order.

Cincinnati put together a 2-out rally in the 2nd inning. Joey Votto and Christian Encarnacion-Strand singled to put runners on the corners and then Will Benson doubled in a run to put the Reds up 1-0. Luke Maile played add on with a double of his own, plating two more runs to make it 3-0.

Dansby Swanson led off the bottom of the inning with a solo home run to get the Cubs on the board and cut into the Reds lead. Abbott responded by striking out the next three batters. The Reds would get the run back after Jake Fraley singled in TJ Friedl in the top of the 3rd. But the offense wasn’t done there. Joey Votto would single in Fraley, and Christian Encarnacion-Strand would ground out but drive in a run on the play to make it 6-1.

The Cubs weren’t going to just roll over and they went to work in the bottom of the inning. Nick Madrigal walked to lead off the inning and moved to third on a double from Nico Hoerner. Back-to-back sacrifice flies made it 6-3. Cody Bellinger then missed a home run by a matter of feet, doubling off of the ivy with two outs to keep the inning going. Dansby Swanson then drew a walk to bring the tying run to the plate in the form of Yan Gomes. He’d come through with an RBI single to make it 6-4 and the pitches for Abbott were piling up and Cincinnati got the bullpen moving. On the 34th pitch of the inning, Abbott would strike out Christopher Morel to end the rally as the Reds clung to a 6-4 lead.

When the top of the 4th began the Cubs had a new pitcher on the mound as Javier Assad took over for Marcus Stroman. The Reds would get two runners on via walks, but both would be stranded. In the bottom of the inning Andrew Abbott would walk the leadoff hitter before getting Nick Madrigal to fly out. With Nico Hoerner due up, who had homered and doubled off of Abbott already, David Bell turned to his bullpen and called in Buck Farmer. He got the job done, inducing a ground ball double play on his second pitch to end the threat and the inning.

Farmer would return for the bottom of the 5th inning and he would toss a perfect inning with two strikeouts. Fernando Cruz took over in the 6th and he would strike out Dansby Swanson to start the inning, but give up a single to Yan Gomes. He’d rebound with another strikeout, but with the Cubs calling on pinch hitter Mike Tauchman – a lefty – it was the Reds going to the bullpen to call on Alex Young to try and finish out the inning. Three pitches later a grounder to Matt McLain ended the inning and sent the game to the 7th with Cincinnati still holding onto a 6-4 lead.

Lucas Sims came out of the bullpen for the Reds in the bottom of the 7th inning and he hit Nick Madrigal with the first pitch he threw. He would steal second base two pitches before Nico Hoerner walked. Sims would strike out Seiya Suzuki and Ian Happ. He got ahead of Cody Bellinger 0-2 before getting a pop up to shortstop to strand both runners and hold onto a 2-run lead.

Will Benson came up in the 8th inning with a 1-out line drive into right field that got by a sliding Seiya Suzuki and Benson raced around the bases for a triple. He’d still be standing there when the inning ended after back-to-back strikeouts ended the Reds threat.

Ian Gibaut took over in the bottom of the 8th inning for Cincinnati. He got a ground out on a nice play from Matt McLain up the middle for the first out of the frame. Gibaut wasn’t as lucky with Yan Gomes, who lined a double into the left field corner. Another double followed as Christopher Morel doubled to center on a ball that probably should have been caught, but almost turned TJ Friedl around. That made it 6-5 and put the tying run at second base with one out. Gibaut struck out Mike Tauchman for the second out. He’d get a ground out to end the inning and keep the Reds in front by a run.

Alexis Diaz took over in the 9th inning and he got the Cubs to go in order, sealing a 6-5 win. The victory moved Cincinnati to 59-49 on the season and 1.5 games up on the second place Milwaukee Brewers.

Key Moment of the Game

Alexis Diaz recording the final out of the game.

Notes Worth Noting

Six Reds relievers combined to allow one run in 5.2 innings.

The 1-5 hitters for the Reds went 1-19 on the game. The Reds 6-9 hitters went 7-16 with four extra-base hits.

Will Benson picked up two hits on the day, a double and a triple. Since he was called back up from Triple-A in late May he’s hitting .321/.428/.619 in 48 games played.

Milwaukee lost. Chicago obviously lost. The Reds are now 1.5 games up on the Brewers and 5.0 games up on the Cubs as the season enters August.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Chicago Cubs

Tuesday August 1st, 8:05pm ET

Ben Lively (4-6, 3.76 ERA) vs Justin Steele (11-3, 2.87 ERA)

121 Responses

  1. J

    Free Benson! There’s absolutely no reason on earth for that guy to be hitting #8 in front of a backup catcher and a guy who can’t be trusted to put the bat on the ball. (No offense Maile, but you’re a backup catcher, and no offense Elly, but you do strike out an awful lot.)

    • VottoMattic42

      They are 10 games over .500 and arguably one of the best lineups in baseball as is. Don’t touch it.

    • MK

      Would you say the same thing about Stephenson? Because if you check the offensive numbers the two catcher are pretty close to the same. I would rather see Benson 9th than eighth but the young man is playing above expectations at the bottom of the order. So if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

    • TR

      A game at a time, of course, but a sweep of the Cubbies would greatly damage their move toward the top.

  2. Melvin

    Good win. Extended our lead. 🙂 Be nice to get another strong arm in the pen.

    • JayTheRed

      I too am happy about the Lefty pickup. It will give Young a chance to be used later near the end of the game instead of during the 6th inning.

  3. Kevin Patrick

    These guys are going to give me a heart attack. Great day for Joey and Farmer.

    • JayTheRed

      Watched the game. Farmer looked great tonight.

    • MK

      My heart did a little flutter when the let him come back out for the second inning. I’ve come to believe the Reds relievers are incapable of getting more than 3 outs, Didn’t the TV graphic say we have three guys leading the league in appearances? Because they throw one inning every night.

  4. Old-school

    Reds are tied with Dodgers with 2nd most wins in Nl at 59

    Forget the WC or Nl Central. Win a bye in the first round and be the 2 seed.

    Why not

    • Melvin

      Okay. You have my permission to make that happen. 🙂

    • MK

      Sparky used to say the only number that counts in the standings is the loss column. Reds are 4 behind the Dodgers in that one.

      • greenmtred

        The Dodgers have played fewer games than the Reds, though. Maybe they’ll lose all of them. The preceding was a little joke.

      • MK

        Sparky alway said because they can win them all and he couldn’t do anything to counteract that.

  5. RedlegScott

    My key moment of the game: Lucas Sims bouncing back after plunking and walking the first two batters he faced to start his inning of relief. I thought we were toast.

    • RedlegScott

      Welcome to the club, Sam Moll.

    • Indy Red Man

      As it turned out the Cubs not scoring their leadoff double in the 1st was pretty big too

    • TR

      Sims often keeps us on edge but usually gets it done.

  6. TJ

    Great bullpen management by Bell again. Young, Cruz, and Diaz will all be available tomorrow if needed. Farmer could probably get an out or two tomorrow. Let’s keep widening that gap.

  7. J

    Now it’s time to play “Guess Tomorrow’s Lineup.” Here’s my guess, which contains a few surprises:

    1) EDLC (3rd)
    2) McLain (SS)
    3) Steer (2nd)
    4) CES (1st)
    5) Senzel (of)
    6) Stephenson (c)
    7) Fairchild (of)
    8) Newman (dh)
    9) Benson (of)

    • Indy Red Man

      Bell had Senzel #2 last week. I don’t think they’re moving McLain out of #3.

      • J

        Good point. Senzel goes to #2. McLain is #3. Then Steer, CES, Stephenson, Fairchild, Newman, Benson

    • CI3J

      Pretty sure Newman will be leading off.

      • J

        It’s like an immovable object meeting an unstoppable force. Newman leads off against all lefties, but Elly leads off against everyone. Which will prevail tomorrow?

    • wkuchad

      1) EDLC (3B)
      2) McLain (SS)
      3) Steer (1B)
      4) CES (DH)
      5) Senzel (RF)
      6) Stephenson (c)
      7) Fairchild (CF)
      8) Newman (2b)
      9) Benson (LF)

      Agree with the players, but I changed around the positions.

  8. Tim

    When does Moll show up and who does he replace on the roster?

    • RedlegScott

      Good question. Duarte? Casali (all you wishfuls out there)?

    • J

      Unless someone is secretly injured, presumably Duarte is being sent down.

    • Jason Franklin

      It should be cut Casali and keep Duarte up here. The Reds will need some bodies especially if they keep using 7 guys a day. Maybe send Duarte down and call up a long man/starter type.

      • Oldtimer

        They can’t add Moll to the 26 man roster unless someone on it goes down.

    • BK

      It won’t be Casali as he is already on the injured list.

    • Tampa Red

      It HAS to be a pitched, you can’t have more than 13 pitchers on the active roster.

  9. Redgoggles

    Fun game! Crowd was pretty electric up until last out. Not much out of Elly and McClain but still got a w thanks to Diaz all star closer.

    • Daytonnati

      McLain great play in the field.

      • Redgoggles

        True. Speer nice dp at 2nd too. Fraley and Friedl missed catches that would’ve been outstanding.

    • RedlegScott

      Yes. Praise to the bottom of the line-up tonight.

  10. Indy Red Man

    Big win. Tonight and yesterday’s opposing starters are right in Joey’s wheelhouse. Righties under 95 mph. Bell should play him accordingly and he wouldn’t have these long cold stretches.

  11. Rednat

    Old guy here. Benson kind of reminds me of Concepcion in the brm days. he flew under the radar but always seemed to come up with big hits. I actually don’t mind him deep in the order but I wish Bell would move him around a bit in the line up like Sparky did with Davey.

    • J

      But what does it mean to say you don’t mind him at the bottom of the order? Do you mean it’s actually a good strategy to stick your highest OPS guy in the #8 or 9 spot? If so, why? How? If Morgan had hit 8th his entire career, he’d still have been a Hall-of-Fame player. He’d have been the most amazing #8 hitter in the history of the league. Would you have said you didn’t mind him hitting down there because he was so good at it?

      • Rednat

        i like having speed at the top and bottom of the line up (ala the brm with Griffey and Morgan at the top of the lineup and Geronimo and Concepcion at the bottom). that can put a ton of pressure on the pitching and defense.. you could have a line up of basically 3 leadoff guys in a row with Benson 9th, De LA CRUZ AND FRIEDL 1st and second. But I would like to see what Benson could do in the second or 5th position as well.

      • Kywhi

        Dude, the Reds are in first place after being predicted to lose 100 games. Why not be happy we have a lineup that has a Will Benson batting 8th or 9th? The bottom of the order, of which Benson appears happy to be a member, carried us to a win over a red-hot Cubs team tonight. Enjoy what’s in front of you.

      • RedlegScott

        Perhaps Benson will eventually be dubbed the greatest #8/9 hitter in baseball and make it to the Hall? Fine by me as long as they keep winning.

      • J

        But you could achieve the same thing by having Frieldl hit 9th and the guy whose OPS is 200 points higher than Friedl’s could hit first, so you’re maximizing his at-bats and increasing the odds that your sluggers are coming up with runners on base. Sparky didn’t have Morgan hitting 8th just to have speed at the bottom. He used a fast guy who didn’t reach base or hit home runs as often.

      • J

        Kywhi, why don’t YOU be happy and stop worrying about what I’m typing? Is someone forcing you to read my comments? Do they make you so sad that you can’t enjoy this great season? This team is in first place, beating everyone’s expectations, and instead of just kicking back and enjoying it, you’re wasting your time arguing with someone you know only as “J”? Dude, take a chill pill. Enjoy the season. If my comments are harshing your mellow, don’t read them.

      • JB

        J- seems like you are the one arguing and you need the chill pill.

      • greenmtred

        It was good strategy in this game and has been other times. Brantley was saying how tough it is on opposing pitchers to have tough outs throughout the lineup. And anyway, in plenty of games the “leadoff” hitter only leads off an inning once You could swap Benson for Elly, I suppose, and perhaps to good effect. But that might simply amount to swapping deck chairs on–not the Titanic, but a ship in the late stages of an unexpectedly successful cruise.

      • J

        JB, this is a Reds discussion blog. We’re allowed to discuss and debate Reds things. That’s actually sort of the main purpose of allowing comments, I believe. What people shouldn’t do is tell me (and others) to stop being critical and/or stop having debates just because the team happens to be winning at the moment. If it bothers someone to see criticism of Bell or a debate about something he’s doing, they should just skip over it, not tell the participants to stop engaging in it. (I ignore lots of discussions that don’t interest me, and often skip certain commenter’s comments because I know what they’re going to say and/or don’t care what they’re going to say.) I wish Doug would take some sort of action against the comments along the lines of “you should relax and just enjoy the wins and never criticize anything,” but instead he’s leaving it to me to keep fighting with people who insist on telling me how I’m “supposed” to react after a Reds win.

      • J

        GMR, if Morgan had hit 8th or 9th every game in 1975 and Concepcion hit second every day, Morgan would still have been a great hitter and the Reds would still have won a ton of games. Does that l mean it would have been a great strategy? I don’t think so, but maybe you do?

      • Michael E

        Okay, here is the deal with Benson. He has been a mild bust of a prospect. He has struggled in MLB pre-2023 (not a large sample size, sure). Cleveland gave up on him and cut bait. He hasn’t sniffed success until 2023.

        Leave him in the bottom third. A hitter that has struggled can easily revert. Hitting 7th/8th/9th means almost NO PRESSURE to be THE guy. He can just be himself. You move him up to 3rd/4th/5th and he MIGHT turn into a pumpkin, trying for HRs even more because now he thinks he HAS to be that guy. If he suddenly has a run of 0-4s with 3Ks, you might have his mind traveling back to…oh no, not again.

        If this was an established MLB player, sure, move him up. He’s not. If in 2024 he’s still playing fairly well, and cuts his Ks down another percent or two, move him up, but not in 2023, barring injuries.

      • J

        I continue to laugh (almost literally laugh out loud) at the “no pressure on Benson hitting 8th” arguments. The guy has been feeling pressure all season to prove he belongs in the majors. I can’t even imagine how much each at-bat must have meant to him after flopping so badly to begin the year, and then finding himself back on the team due to an injury even though he hadn’t really been tearing it up in the minors. He handled that pressure quite well, and eventually became an (almost) everyday player. And he’s come to the plate in numerous high-pressure situations while hitting at the bottom. Last night, for example, when he got his RBI double and his triple (which should have resulted in an insurance run, but Maile struck out even though he was hitting in the no-pressure part of the order), I can’t imagine he was thinking “oh, it’s fine if I make an out because I’m hitting 8th so nobody expects anything of me.” He’s clearly an intense guy and takes every at-bat seriously no matter where he’s hitting or what the situation is. Nobody seemed to think it was a mistake to move Friedl up or India up when they started having success at the bottom, but somehow Benson is such a delicate flower that he can’t handle the pressure? It just seems laughable. He’d probably approach each at-bat with exactly the same intensity he has now, which is exactly what I’d like to see in the leadoff position. At the very least, he wouldn’t be flailing at balls two feet low and outside the way some young leadoff hitters do. He’d force the pitcher to throw strikes and happily walk if the pitcher throws four balls. As a leadoff hitter should.

      • greenmtred

        Hi, J: I don’t attach as much importance to the fine points of batting order as I used to: I can remember, as a kid, spending hours making up all star teams and arranging the players into optimal batting orders. What I’ve noticed, slowly, is that opportunities to hit in key situations come to guys spread throughout the lineup. Not equally, of course, but variably, game by game. This Reds team, which has a lineup loaded with dangerous–if streaky–hitters, may afford more opportunities to drive runners in than teams with 3 or 4 light hitters, and Benson seems to be thriving in his role. It won’t surprise me if he is moved up in the order, nor will it surprise me if he stays where he is: as long as he’s hitting and the Reds are winning, I’m content. I get that you and others are more analytical than I am and more interested in these nuances, and that’s cool. I enjoy your posts.

    • J

      Sparky did move Concepcion around, but right now Benson has stats closer to Morgan’s 1975 numbers. Concepcion’s numbers were more like Senzel’s. That’s the sort of guy you might sometimes want hitting at the top and sometimes at the bottom. Benson’s numbers you want at the top each and every day.

      • Optimist

        Let’s not get carried away with the comparisons here. My stats are closer to Concepcion’s than Morgan’s, and I’m an old guy sitting in front of a laptop.

        Benson is having an excellent season, and may well be moved up in the order, or perhaps remain the anchor as the best 8/9 hitter in baseball.

      • J

        I’m not saying Benson has proved he’s as good as Morgan, I’m saying we’ve got a guy who’s been hitting like Morgan (now for a substantial portion of the season) batting 8th/9th, while Friedl is hitting second. The guy who’s getting carried away is Bell, and he’s getting carried away with Friedl, as he seems to be convinced Friedl simply can’t be moved out of the top of the order against a right handed starter. (And I’m not bashing Friedl. He’s having a very good season. He’s just not having nearly the season Benson is, and it’s not like Friedl has a long history of being a Hall-of-Fame type of player and he’s just having an off year.)

      • Optimist

        I’m with Kywhi’s comment above – leave Benson in 7, 8 or 9. He’s clearly productive there, has excellent BB/K stats (pitch recognition), works up the pitch count, has power as the second thru the order cleanup hitter, and gives the hitter ahead of him good pitches.

        On top of all that, the only guy who has had to be moved out of the order, other than for injury, is Benson himself after the terrible start. Everyone else is settling in without long slumps or droughts – other than Joey, for a spell, and if anyone can play themselves out of it it’s Joey.

      • Rick

        Had to move up to post this.
        Good 1975 research on Geronimo on your part.
        He is an overlooked gem to our title teams. Loved his defense and accuracy on his outfield assists with that strong left arm.

    • Rick

      The chief, Cesar Geronimo flourished down there. Wasn’t as effective when ocassionally moved up. I think Benson can handle moving up the pecking order, different approach.

      • J

        That may be true over the course of his career, but just for fun I checked his 1975 stats, and he did quite well when he moved up (except when he hit third). Here are his batting averages that year:

        Hitting 1st: 1.000 (1 for 1)
        Hitting 2nd: .583 (7 for 12)
        Hitting 3rd: .214 (3 for 14)
        Hitting 5th: .387 (12 for 31)
        Hitting 6th: .245 (where he actually had the most AB’s — 200 of them)
        Hitting 7th: .215
        Hitting 8th: .266

      • Melvin

        Just curious. What about 76 when he hit .300?

    • JayTheRed

      Whoever we traded to get Bensen, it was totally worth it. Love the guys energy and has just continued to be productive.

  12. Rednat

    Votto has had some nice at bats the last 2 games. if he catches that magic he had in 2021 i think we win this division going away.

  13. TJ

    Is Steer becoming the player we thought Senzel was going to be? He plays all over the field, has average to good speed, and has good pop in his bat.

    • Vottomattic42

      Yes, he already is that guy. Wait until he takes the next step.

  14. SultanofSwaff

    Super fun game to attend. First time seeing Diaz from the front row of the upper deck just off of home plate—-from there you can really see the torque he gets in his windup and precisely how unhittable his slider is. A truly unique talent.

    Moll should be a positive addition to the bullpen but in my opinion they still need another lock down piece.

    • JayTheRed

      I would still love to see another solid reliever and really wishing we could get a starting pitcher. We will see what happens.

    • LT

      Yeah. I made a comment earlier that when he throws the slider for stoke or make it look like a stride, hitters will have no chance. When his slider is off and he relies heavy on his 4-seamer that’s when he gets in trouble.

    • Doc

      Just out of curiosity, how many lock down situations typically occur in a game tha t would warrant a second lock down piece?

      How many championship teams over the past 20 years or so have two or more memorable lockdown pieces?

      And for trivia, who was the second lock down piece during Mariano Rivera’ career with the Yankees?

      • wkuchad

        Well, the Reds’ last championship team had two or more.

      • SultanofSwaff

        Are you suggesting high leverage situations only happen in the 9th inning? If yes, then I guess Krall’s work is done and he can go on vacation.
        Championship teams with more than one great reliever? Well, just last year the Astros had 4 guys with WHIPs below 0.60 in the playoffs. But yeah, the Nasty Boys come to mind…..or take a glance this year at the back end of the Brewers bullpen……or the Braves. You wouldn’t swap? I would. To answer your second question, the Yankees had not one but two additional lockdown relievers in their 3-peat era–Jeff Nelson and Mike Stanton.

        Come playoff time you need to shorten any game you have a lead.

  15. Doc4uk

    Hard to believe that the Reds have the second best record in the National League at the beginning of August! Who predicted that in March? Any what’s even more amazing is the absence of Greene, Lodolo, and Overton from the original rotation for most of the season.

    • Moon

      Third best record. The Braves and Dodgers have better records than Cincy. The Reds are two games behind the Dodgers for that second spot and a half game up on SF. Reds would be on top of the WC race over those same Giants and of course they are 1.5 games up on the Brewers for the Division. The Reds have the 8th best record in the Majors.

      • Jim t

        Love watching this team play. They battle every game. Bell has this team playing winning baseball. Right now he is the favorite for Manager of the year.

      • Thomas Atwood

        Imagine having a +7 game advantage over the division leaders H2H but still trailing them by 1.5 games. It doesn’t usually work like that.

        The Brewers are 47-47 against the other 28 teams.

    • TR

      I give a lot of credit to the Red’s management for leading the team to the current record with the starting pitching woes for the past few months and the constant use of the bullpen. Playoffs or not this year, the Reds are headed in the right direction.

    • RedsMonk65

      I read something somewhere the other day (can’t recall where–sorry) that since May 25, the Reds have the second-best record in all of MLB. The only team with a better record over that period is the Braves. WOW.

  16. Indy Red Man

    SD lost so they’re 5 back of 3 teams for the last wildcard. Won’t happen, but I think Snell would put us in NLCS

    • Doc

      Good heavens NO, and neither would Verlander nor any other high priced addition. Al they will do is put us one inflated payroll closer to another rebuild without a championship.

      • VaRedsFan

        Snell wouldn’t cost a dime to the payroll next year. Free Agent.

  17. Indy Red Man

    You do realize we get Joey & Moose off the books? Elly brings them in and increases revenue so I’m going to assume Reds fans want them to spend it somewhere

    • wkuchad

      Yes, and hopefully they spend it all on pitching. The offense and bench are both set next year. They don’t need to spend a penny of extra funds besides raises and arbitration.

      We should have pretty substantial money to spend, and it should all go towards a starting pitcher and couple of bullpen pieces.

      • Jim t

        Do we pick up Joey’s 7 mil dollar option for next year?

      • VaRedsFan

        Votto is owed 20 million if he plays.
        The Reds can buy him out for 7 million.

      • wkuchad

        Jim, first, I’m very glad Votto is on the team this year. He’s playing well and seems like he’s having a blast. He deserves this after all the crappy teams he’s played on.

        No I don’t pick up Votto’s option. I’m paying him his $7 million buyout. Votto has been my all-time favorite Red, but I hope he retires at end of this year. I don’t want him playing for another team, but I don’t see a role for him next year.

        Our bench is looking like some combination of Senzel, Barrero, Fairchild, backup catcher, maybe even Newman. Our starting position players are set, and that doesn’t include Marte.

    • Tampa Red

      jim t, if the Reds pick up the option, it’s $20 million. If they do NOT pick up the option, it’s $7 million.

      • Jim t

        @Tampa red Thanks for the info. In that case he is probably gone unless they agree to negotiate a lower price.

    • MBS

      I’d try to sign EDLC, McLain, and to a deal similar to Greene’s in the offseason. That would still probably have us under $50M. To me that means we could easily spend $50M on pitching!

      • AllTheHype

        Yes I agree with that, although I think Elly will be looking for more years and dollars than Greene got. Those are the two I would target this offseason, plus Abbott.

        I’d like to see another year from Steer and Benson before making any long term decisions on them.

      • MBS

        I love Abbott, but I like how they waited until a full season of ball before signing Greene. I’d try to extend Abbott in the next offseason assuming he is who we think he is in 24. I’d add CES to the same extension class as Abbott if CES also ends up being who we thought he was in 24.

        That would be a nice core of signed players over 3 seasons.

        EDLC, McLain
        Abbott, CES

        Hopefully we keep bringing up talented players and keep these kind of extensions going for years to come.

  18. SultanofSwaff

    The icing on last night’s win was driving to work this morning (I’m in the Chicago area) and listening to sports radio. The fits of anger and despair from the Cub fans had me chuckling the whole ride in.

    How great would it be if the Cubs don’t make the playoffs while also not cashing in on Stroman and Bellinger at the deadline?

    • Mark Moore

      Extra sweet indeed!

      Wondering if Jed reverses course over the next 8 hours and moves one or both of them. Stroman didn’t do him any favors last night, but that’s a blip on the radar in a market starved for starting pitching.

    • Jim Walker

      @Sultan, Just wondering if you play it incognito at Wrigley as a Reds fan or are you proud and loud??

      • SultanofSwaff

        Loud and proud… daughter too. Cubs fans are fake tough guys. Sox fans on the other hand……..

      • MK

        My son, a Mets fan, wore his Doc Gooden jersey at Wrigley and was threatened in the restroom. Cubs fans are the most disposable bunch of people in baseball.

  19. Jim t

    If the Reds play 500 ball from this point they will finish with 86 wins. Does that get them in the playoffs?

    • David

      Maybe a wild card. Maybe. I don’t think 86 wins gets the Division title.

      90 wins I think will do it.

      And yes, it is remarkable that the Reds have won this many games without Greene and Lodolo, upon whom so many hopes were placed.
      Maybe they come back “fresh” in August (ala, Jose Rijo in 1990) and help carry the Reds during the last month and through the playoffs.
      Pitchers that worked all year and and threw a lot of innings frequently have “tired” arms come playoff time.

  20. Jim Walker

    Monday was a good bounce back day for CES. 2/4 with a double and an RBI. This was the AAA version of CES, shooting the RH pitching up the off side gap. And based on his AAA experience, he has the range to clear fences going this way too.

    Imagine if Fraley could pick up the nuance of doing this versus LH pitching. It would be a huge add on to his game and plus for the team.

    • Rednat

      yes , i followed him close in Louisville. he would have a bad game but follow it up with 3-4 good games. it is interesting the power has not quite translated yet for edlc,mclain and CES from AAA to the bigs.

      • David

        Pitching in AAA is a lot more sloppy than in the Majors, especially this year. Teams are so “starved” for good pitching that anybody that’s anygood gets promoted, so the quality of pitching at AAA this year is, overall, pretty low. CES (and the others) feasted on that stuff. CES has always hit, and he will adapt as he sees more ML level pitching. More good breaking balls and sliders, better control at hitting spots than in AAA ball.

  21. Votto4life

    Cleveland traded a good starting pitcher for a minor league bat (although apparently a good one). They really must be kicking themselves for letting Benson get away.

    • Steelerfan

      You are spot on. Live in CLE, and there is some real grumpyness about this move, especially when they are only 1/2 game out, and have had some recent seasons where even some minial investments, especially in the bullpen, might have taken the a level or two further.

      Tampa Bay gets all the love, but CLE has done a really good job of player development with resources signficantly less than what even Bob has spent. But last few years, they have refused to consolidate some of the prospects into an established bat, and as Benson, Diaz, and to some extent even Nolan Jones have hadsuccess elsewhere, the grumbling has gotten louder.

      It doesn’t help that Manzardo, while by all accounts a real hitting prospect, is a LH DH/1B type. Which with Josh Naylor and Josh Bell, doesn’t feel like the biggest short-term need.

      Search “Guardians outfielder home runs”, and you will see why Benson’s name comes up frequently

      • LT

        You have the guts of a burglar to come in to a cincy discussion board with nickname Steelerfan 🙂 you know it’s not football season yet, so I’m let it go but I refuse to make any further comments on your comments 🙂

      • AllTheHype

        @Steeler, If all you did was read the comments here, you’d think Bob was some cheapskate. But the reality is, he has invested plenty of $$ into the team every time they have turned the corner, and I have no doubt he will do it again. He’s been a good owner. It could be much worse.

  22. LT

    Bullpen last night was bent but not broken. Man, Sims, what can we say about him? Come playoff time and when he pitches, I’ll make sure I don’t have anything in front of me that I can throw at the TV.

    • SultanofSwaff

      Agreed on Sims, but what I like about our relievers in general is that they don’t give up too many home runs. Diaz, Young, Farmer, Gibaut, Sims, and Cruz combined have thrown 277 innings and given up just 29 long flies.

      Oh, and each has a positive WAR and a cumulative total of 9.1. That’s getting it done!

      All that said, we have the prospect capital to acquire an elite controllable relief pitcher. Possible targets:
      Jason Foley, Detroit–0 HR’s allowed in 46 IP.
      Matt Brash, Seattle–76Ks in 43 IP.
      David Bednar, Pitt–1 HR allowed in 42IP.

    • greenmtred

      I’m afraid that I have to leave the room when he’s pitching, or cover my eyes and peek occasionally. It’s gotta be bad for my health.

      • redfanorbust

        I used to feel that way about Lorenzen and Raisel Iglesias.

      • greenmtred

        I did, too. Even Diaz has his moments. Tough gig, particularly for a team with a lot on the line.

    • MBS

      Now that we have another LHP in the pen, I’m betting we see more of Young in the setup role. He’s been the most consistent reliever we have, and now they don’t have to save him for matchups since Moll can become the situational lefty.

      Maybe we get lucky, and Krall brings us another arm or two before 6.

  23. old-school

    I think RLN has better odds of winning the powerball than predicting bell’s lineup against the lefty Steele.

    Im going with:

    Newman 3b
    McLain 2b
    Steer LF
    Elly SS
    Senzel RF
    Votto DH
    CES 1b
    Stephenson C
    Fairchild CF

    • MBS

      1 EDLC, 2 Steer, 3 McLain
      4 Senzel, 5 CES, 6 Newman
      7 Friedl, 8 Senzel, 9 Benson

      • MBS

        lol, no catcher, I lost. Swap #7 for Stephenson

      • MBS

        I didn’t pick positions on purpose which is how I left out the C. I would say yes though, Senzel is the best option for CF if Friedl is on the bench.

  24. J

    Fair to say nobody on earth would have correctly predicted today’s lineup.

    I’m not sure what Bell intends to do if he wants to pinch hit for Newman and Senzel when a right-handed relief pitcher enters. Who’s playing second base? Is he just counting on having such a big lead that he won’t need to pinch hit for those guys? Can someone explain?

    • wkuchad

      Well, if he pinch hits for Newman only, Senzel moves to 2B, which he’s played before.

      If he pinch hits for both Newman and Senzel, then Votto to 1B, CES to 3B, EDLC to SS, and McLain to 2B. All positions they’re familiar with.

      • J

        Ok, I guess if he’s willing to use CES at third (which I don’t think he’s yet played in the majors) he can make it work. But if Steer starts at second and Newman at DH, he’s got a lot more flexibility.

      • wkuchad

        CES has played 3B at least once in the majors and many times in the minors.

        Agree he’d have more flexibility, but this is a good way of giving Steer a semi-day off and keep his bat in the lineup. Steer has maybe the least days off this year. Need to keep him as fresh as possible.

      • J

        I understand the theory, but it would seem to make more sense to have him DH against a righty (or just give him the day off), because the substitutions seem much more straightforward and you’ve got many more options.

  25. Brian Rutherford

    Lineup looks great. Go get another dub Redlegs!