The Cincinnati Reds and Ben Lively would like a do-over on Tuesday night’s game. The right-handed pitcher had to take one for the team on a night when he simply didn’t have it, and was charged with 13 runs on 13 hits – including four home runs – in the first four innings of the game. Cincinnati couldn’t make a come back on that one despite eventually scoring enough runs to win most games.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (59-50) 9 13 2
Chicago Cubs (54-53)
20 21 1
W: Steele (12-3) L: Lively (4-7)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After the Reds offense went down in order on nine pitches, the Chicago Cubs offense went to work in their half of the 1st inning. Back-to-back singles put runners on the corners. Nico Hoerner then stole second base and Tyler Stephenson’s throw was air mailed into center and Mike Tauchman trotted to the plate to make it 1-0. Ben Lively then followed up by walking Ian Happ. Cody Bellinger then singled back up the middle and Hoerner scored to make it 2-0. That brought pitching coach Derek Johnson to the mound for a quick chat with his battery.

The chat didn’t work. Dansby Swanson hit a 3-run homer into the basket in right field. That made it 5-0 and Cincinnati still hadn’t recorded an out. New Cub Jeimer Candelario followed up with a single before Christopher Morel finally made the first Chicago out of the night on a pop up to Elly De La Cruz at third base. Nick Madrigal followed up with a single to right field. Tucker Barnhart came to the plate as the 9th hitter of the inning and he would mercifully ground into a double play to end the inning on Lively’s 35th pitch of the inning.

Cincinnati has come from behind plenty of times in 2023 and they weren’t going to just let this one go without a fight. Spencer Steer led off the 2nd inning with a double and moved up to second on a wild pitch. He would then score on a second wild pitch. Tyler Stephenson would single with two outs, and then he moved up to second base on the third wild pitch of the inning. He would then score when Jeimer Candelario couldn’t come up with a grounder hit by TJ Friedl and the Reds cut the deficit to 5-2.

Ben Lively came back out for the 2nd inning and walked Mike Tauchman to start things off. He would then steal second base and move up to third when for the second time in the game, Tyler Stephenson’s throw went into center. Lively got a ground out and then he struck out Ian Happ, but Cody Bellinger hit a 2-out, 2-run homer to extend the Cubs lead 7-2.

The Cubs weren’t finished. They would tack on three more runs in the 3rd inning on a 2-out, 3-run homer by Mike Tauchman. In the 4th inning it was Dansby Swanson slugging his second homer of the day – a run shot – that put the Cubs up 12-2. Jeimer Candelario and Nick Madrigal would both double later in the inning and make it 13-2.

Cincinnati would get a run back in the top of the 5th when Nick Senzel singled with two outs and then scored when Matt McLain doubled him in. Derek Law took over for the Reds when the bottom of the 5th began, ending the night for Ben Lively. He had to work around two walks but he tossed a shutout inning – the first of the night for Cincinnati.

Kevin Newman doubled to lead off the 6th inning and he came around to score when Tyler Stephenson homered into the bleachers in left field. New Reds reliever Sam Moll took over for the bottom of the 6th inning and worked around a leadoff single for a second straight scoreless inning from Cincinnati’s pitchers. He returned for the 7th and got the first out of the inning before being replaced by Fernando Cruz, who gave up the 5th homer of the day to the Cubs when Nico Hoerner crushed a 1-out solo shot to make it 14-5. Ian Happ followed with a double before Cody Bellinger flew out. The Cubs opted for a pinch hitter in Patrick Wisdom for Dansby Swanson, so the Reds opted to call on catcher Luke Maile to enter the game to pitch in the blowout.

That series of moves paid off for one team…. and it was the Cubs, who saw Patrick Wisdom hit the clubs 6th homer of the game and extent their lead to 16-5. Maile would get a fly out to end the inning. He, like Lively, would take one for the team and get beat around in the 8th, too, giving up four more runs – including a 7th Chicago home run – as the Cubs took a 20-5 lead.

In the top of the 9th the Reds tried to put together a little rally when Elly De La Cruz singled with two outs and Nick Senzel walked. That brought Matt McLain to the plate and he came through with an RBI single to make it 20-6. Spencer Steer followed up with an RBI double to plate Senzel and cut the deficit to 13. Kevin Newman then drew a walk to load the bases for Christian Encarnacion-Strand. The rookie infielder came through with a single to plate two more runs and make it 20-9. That would be the end of the rally for the Reds, though, as Tyler Stephenson flew out to end the game.

Key Moment of the Game

Cody Bellinger’s 2-run homer in the 2nd inning that erased the two runs that Cincinnati had scored in the top of the frame and erased any idea of a comeback.

Notes Worth Noting

Hunter Greene threw 2.0 shutout innings with one hit, no walks, and three strikeouts in Arizona for the complex level team in the minor leagues in his first rehab outing. Vladimir Gutierrez threw a perfect inning of relief with a strikeout in the inning that followed.

The Brewers won, shrinking Cincinnati’s lead in the division to a half-game.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Chicago Cubs

Wednesday August 2nd, 8:05pm ET

Brandon Williamson (3-2, 4.48 ERA) vs Drew Smyly (8-7, 4.50 ERA)

211 Responses

  1. Melvin

    Maybe the Cubs used up all of their runs for the rest of the series in this game? 🙂

    • TR

      The winners of blow-out games like this often find it difficult to get a run or two the next game. We’ll see. At least a split series is needed.

      • Votto4life

        The Cubs have been scoring a lot of runs for the past few weeks.

  2. RedlegScott

    A Lively implosion. Moll got in there. Good news about Greene. Nice try, Maile! Lol Move on…

  3. J

    Thought for sure the headline would be “Reds 9th inning rally comes up short.”

  4. Reddawgs2012

    It’s definitely a bummer that the Reds put together a pretty decent effort against the Cubs ace in Steele but it never mattered because Lively decided to vomit all over the mound.

    The last time the Reds were at Wrigley, they swept the Cubs. So they were probably due to lose one. However, giving up 20 runs is kind of painful.

    Get ’em tomorrow, hopefully.

  5. jmb

    Now that the trade deadline has passed, it will be interesting to watch how they manage their starters. If Lively keeps up like this, he’ll be sent down when either Greene or Lodolo come back. Weaver too? But Abbott and Ashcroft will run out of innings toward the end of the season (unless they go to the bull-pen when Greene and/or Lodolo return), so no playoffs or WS for them. And Williamson will run out of innings a little ways into the playoffs. So the rotation will be Greene, Lodolo, Weaver, and Lively in the off-season. Unless Phillips or Richardson have some innings left.

    • VaRedsFan

      Maybe the Reds have a plan to abolish the silly innings limits that exist these days.
      Krall said Abbott didn’t have a limit.

    • Chris

      Not sure where you are getting this nonsense. There will be NO innings limit for any of those starters going into the post season. NONE. Krall has already made that clear.

  6. bug

    Elly strikes out way too much! At this pace, he will lead the Majors in Ks next year,..and by a wide margin. No excuse for that. Send him back to the Minors to learn how to put his bat on the ball. He’s killing us.

    • David

      I don’t think EDLC is killing “us”. Ben Lively gave up 13 runs in the 4 innings he pitched. That killed “us”. And odds are (in my humble opinion) that Weaver will get lit up on Thursday. Hoping the Reds can win tomorrow behind Williamson, and end the road trip 5 and 5.

      Pitching wins games. The Reds scored 9 runs tonight, which should win most games, but they were buried before they started.

      EDLC looked great Sunday. Tonight, not so much. Tomorrow is another day.

      • Melvin

        He did have a hit and a walk tonight.

      • bug

        No. Elly didn’t really hurt us last night. But let me put it this way, so as not to offend. I sure wish he didn’t strike out so much.

      • MBS

        @Bug, yes he is striking out too much. He’s also one of the most dynamic players I’ve seen. He was killing AAA pitching, the only way for him to grow is playing up here.

      • Doc

        EDLC was striking out at a 33% rate entering the game. Three more strikeouts only bumped it further. He’s reincarnating Billy Hamilton since he was put in the leadoff spot.

      • Melvin

        Striking out a lot yes. Billy Hamilton? Not even close.

    • wallyum

      Ridiculous. They scored nine runs in the game and lost. This one is entirely on the shoulders of starting pitching.

      • Chris

        They can’t be good all the time. In the month of July the Red’s starting pitching had the 3rd lowest era in all of baseball. Hope August 1st wasn’t a harbinger of what the full month will bring.

    • mac624

      From GOAT to he’s awful in a month. I love passionate fans! The insanity is indescribable.

      • Pete

        Probably should trade them now before he turns into Billy Hamilton!

    • jazzmanbbfan

      Mickey Mantle struck out “too much”. Reggie Jackson struck out “too much”. Babe Ruth struck out “too much”. EDLC may not come close to those players once his career is over but I’m not concerned that a rookie is adjusting to Major League pitching and strikes out fairly often.

      • Mario

        Current players like Luis Robert, Matt Olsen, Max Muncy, Kyle Schwarber, Julio Rodriguez, etc strike out too much. K’s are ok. I would prefer a more contact, high average guys but they are humans not robots.

    • jmb

      Everybody knew he strikes out too much when he was at AAA. 5 times in one game, even! When have you ever heard of that? That’s why he stayed in the minors as long as he did–to try to work on that. Give him time.

    • Don

      Opposing pitchers are killing him with the low stuff out of the zone. The rest of the league figured out pretty quickly how to attack him.

      If Elly can show more patience, pitchers will be too afraid to pitch him low and out of the strike zone because they know how dangerous he is on the base paths. Pitchers should naturally start elevating the ball a bit more and Elly should start seeing more pitches in the strike zone. This is all predicated on Elly showing more patience, however.

      • DHud

        Agreed, but I think EDLC is learning that ML pitching is really really good

        His first AB vs Stroman two days ago, with two strikes Stroman threw him a slider that started bottom in and dove into the plate. Elly held off as he should. Next pitch Stroman threw a two-seamer that started in the exact same spot but instead this time ran right back to the bottom of the zone for a freezing called strike three

        That’s really good stuff in a really good sequence from a really good pitcher that is really hard to pick up. I got patience for EDLC

      • Chris

        The problem in addition to the swinging at low breaking balls out of the zone is how many fast balls he takes in the zone. He is either not swinging or missing balls in the zone way too much.

    • bug

      >>>The problem in addition to the swinging at low breaking balls out of the zone is how many fast balls he takes in the zone. He is either not swinging or missing balls in the zone way too much.

      Yes, Chris! Bingo.

  7. Melvin

    Listening to Krall’s comments today it’s a little confusing but the way I understand it is minor leaguers can still be traded. The exceptions to the Reds for that are Lopez and Reynolds since they’re on major league contracts. Not sure if I’m correct.

    • BK

      I’m not sure about Lopez (perhaps he signed a split contract and that may have a rule that I’m not aware of) but players who have been on the 40-man roster are not eligible to be traded until after the conclusion of the World Series.

    • Jim Walker

      MLB Trade Rumors says anyone that has been on an MLB contract at any time from opening day forward is NOT eligible to be traded.

      This includes people who were on the 40 man roster whether or not they were ever on the 26 man roster. It includes anyone on the MLB level IL, short term 10/15 day IL or long term 60 day IL. It includes anyone who cleared waivers and was outrighted off an MLB roster during the season.

      Matt Reynolds appeared for the Reds at MLB this year. By the MLBTR stated rules, he cannot be traded. Vosler and Ramos and a passel of pitchers now off the 40 man would be in the same category.

      As best as I can find Alejo Lopez was outrighted during Spring Training. I do not know which side of the line that puts him on.

      Here is a link to the MLBTR explanation, Note it was written in 2019 when the “new” rules 1st came into being, so the names of specific players used as examples do are outdated and do NOT currently apply

  8. Indy Red Man

    Abbott & Lively just centered up way too many fastballs. You have to have good off speed against a team like this.

    Good news is we win 1 of 2 and mission accomplished. I also think CES is going to start becoming a factor!

    Cubs play Atlanta next and have 6 with them plus a bunch with SF/Arizona/Milw.
    The Reds just have to take care of business at home and we’ll be in the playoffs somewhere. We need to call up Phillips and maybe Richardson and Antone? Something tells me Lodolo might be an Andrew Miller type reliever for September.
    You start him and he ends up with 75 pitches in the 4th inning

    • MBS

      If we actually get Greene, and Lodolo back and healthy I agree one of our LHP’s need to go to the pen. Lodolo makes sense if he can’t build up arm to a starter level of innings, Abbott makes sense if he’s hitting an innings limit, and Williamson makes sense if those first two scenarios don’t happen.

      I agree with you on calling up Phillips, and Richardson. Weaver needs to go, and Richardson is the long man our pen is missing.

      • DHud

        BP has needed a long man so bad all season…

        Richardson in that role is an interesting idea

        As I’ve posted on here before and will just this one more time, my vote is likely to the pen when cards are shuffled out to fill that role. Also would trust him in higher leverage outings

        Last night was the anomaly in his season; he’s been throwing the ball well

  9. Mark Moore

    If ever a game warranted a Stink! Fish! Pot!!! it was this one.

    Wipe it off the books and get our heads clear for tonight. It’s the Stupid Cubs and we do have a solid track record of beating them in Wrigleyville.

  10. chris

    Glad we didn’t make any trades for this stud pitching roster. Absolute beasts. Here’s to another year of being cheap and relying on luck.

    • jmb

      What do you think about the Civale trade? Seems he went REAL cheaply. Seems the Reds could have gotten him for Arroyo alone–just looking at where the player Cleveland got is on the prospects list. (Though, maybe they were looking for a first baseman, not a shortstop.)

    • Tar Heel Red

      >Chris…the Reds had their chances to add a starting pitcher but chose not to do anything. Yonny Chirinos (and others) could have been claimed off waivers at no cost at all, other than replacing another player on the roster. They could have also added a pitcher like Ryan Yarbrough for very little, but again chose not to. Now we just have to wait and hope that the youngsters can handle the load.

    • Chris

      Not to confuse you with me (Chris). I chalk your comment up to sarcasm because the Red’s starters just finished the month of July with the 3rd best era in the month of July. One bad outing by a pitcher that has been better than so many that were available in trades is just silly to harp on or build a point on.

  11. GreatRedLegsFan

    After almost 200 AB, EDLC is currently sporting a whopping 36% SO rate and an a slighty above average 103+ OPS. His swinging rate of outside strike zone pitches is still terribly high, has not been able to make the necessary adjustments just yet.

    • Doc

      Perhaps he should be down near Benson in the batting order. Give more ABs to someone who is getting a bat on the ball.

      • jmb

        True, you don’t want your lead-off guy to SO so much. Due to his speed, a try out in the #1 hole made sense, but now it’s time to try something else. Glad to see Freidl was dropped in the order, as he hasn’t been himself since he came back from the IL. McLain leads off, then Benson, Steer, Fraley…

      • J

        Friedl has been hitting low in the order against left-handed starters ever since Bell started playing him against lefties. He’ll be back at #2 against righties.

  12. DataDumpster

    Saw the note about Greene’s “nice” innings of work at the AZ Complex. Perhaps they have all the rehab equipment and medical personnel needed there for this kind of thing because why else would you subject your franchise pitcher (and others) to the stifling heat of Phoenix to pony up pitches to high school guys (this league being the lowest rung of the minor league system)?
    I have spent time in Phoenix during July/August and it is disorienting when it is dark at 10:00 p.m. and still over a 100 outside. Seems ripe for loss of concentration, cramps, and a whole load of issues not conducive for injury recovery. Fans get in for free if they can bear the heat. Concessions are not offered. Doesn’t seem in the plan for Hunter and the others to get some work at AAA before returning to the Reds. I guess this is the way it works!

    • Luke J

      He lives in Arizona. I’m sure that is where he has wanted to be while rehabbing. As he gets closer to coming back they’ll move him. But letting him stay at his home is a big benefit to him, I’m sure.

  13. Angelo

    How did the deadline pass without a trade for a STARTER?? Lorenzen was out there and he would have really helped. Its not like we are in last place, we are in first and needed to make a deal. This FO leaves a lot to be desired and IMO are lucky all the kids are blossoming at the same time.

    • greenmtred

      I’m sure that Krall tried to get more pitching. He said as much. With available pitchers in short supply, the asking prices were high. He probably doesn’t want to give up our top prospects for pitchers little better than what we have. This was one game. Blow-outs happen.

    • Luke J

      What you fail to understand is that it isn’t luck or coincidence that they young kids are blossoming at the same time. Credit the FO for that as it is part of the plan of the rebuild. Reports were that the Reds were one of the most aggressive teams seeking starting pitching before the trade deadline. But if the asking prices are too high, they’re too high. A team like the Reds, who are at the beginning stages of coming out of their rebuild and being competitive, should absolutely not mortgage that bright future for a relatively minimal boost a rental pitcher would give them this year. They are still a little ways away from being top contenders and a starting pitcher wasn’t going to change that. Stay the course. They most likely made the right calls.

      • Old-school

        I predicted Reds would easily beat the vegas line of 65.5 Wins. I didnt see more than 72-74 though

        Many here were adamant no way this team could be better than last years and would lose 100 again. Krall has done a nice job. The pro scouting folks have done a nice job. Player development folks have done a nice job. Coaches have done a nice job.

        Reds are in first place in August. Its been a fabulous year

      • Votto4life

        OK, so we both were wrong then? Got it.

  14. SultanofSwaff

    I’m seeing two narratives around the trade deadline being peddled. One is that the players wanted the team kept intact. That’s the tail wagging the dog….it’s letting the kids have ice cream for breakfast. No responsible front office would assume good chemistry can make up for talent deficiencies in certain areas.

    Second is that the asking prices for pitching was too high. This works from the presumption that the only way to acquire the help you need is by giving up prospect capital. The payroll is peanuts…..ownership could’ve more easily absorbed another team’s upside down contract even if that player isn’t quite worth what they’re making. Teams all around baseball did this because incremental gains this time of year have an outsized impact. And yes, we do have prospects we probably should’ve sold high on……lesser rated guys overperforming (Blake Dunn, Rece Hinds, etc.).

    Here’s the money quote from USA today calling the Reds trade deadline losers:

    “Their decision to not add a pitcher smacks of accepting the excitement as a salve, whether the winning continues or not.”


    • BK

      The media blathered all over San Diego last summer for their aggressive approach which left them with a bloated underperforming team. An active trade deadline is good for their business. I didn’t see a single article on how the Padres may have gone too far last season. Of course, they give poor grades to the teams that didn’t add to the frenzy.

      • Doc

        Ditto the Mets. Dumping all the big pitching they signed last year.

      • jmb

        You’re right–the media loves, needs, touts action…as does our society.

    • PTBNL

      I don’t think the players have that much power that they can stifle any possible trades.
      Just where in the world did that narrative come from?

      • greenmtred

        Did your information indicate that they did more than state their wishes? Did it say that Krall decided not to make trades due to the players’ preferences?

    • Chris

      Yes, because USA Today is such a great evaluator of Baseball management. LOL. Way to make your argument by quoting that rag. Also, where did you read the players wanted to keep the team intact?

  15. Indy Red Man

    You’re right, but the flip side of that is more convincing imo. Who’s to say they’ll be in first place next August? They should’ve atleast added a good reliever with high leverage experience. Arizona picked up Paul Sewald from Seattle for instance. 21 of 24 saves and held opponents to .196 ba. How much did they pay? Idk, but he could’ve helped

    • Doug

      Amen brother. The Reds are in a battle for the division and the front office is going to watch them drown rather than getting this team some much needed help, simply because they’ve peaked too soon. Anything
      cann happen next year but the Reds are winning now! No one’s asking them to mortgage the future. How many infield prospects do you need. I’m reminded of the trade for Matt Latos. We gave up quality prospects, yes. He flamed out quickly, yes. But did he help us reach the playoffs?
      Of course he did. When 2024 rolls around who’s to say all our rookies won’t suffer sophomore slumps. Strike while the iron is hot. It worked for the Braves in 2021. They went for it and won a World Series.

  16. VaRedsFan

    I’ve been a huge fan of how Krall has handled the rebuild. In my opinion, I think it was a big failure to not acquire a starting pitcher before the deadline. After seeing what some of these guys were traded for, the price was well within reason to get a deal done. They have a plethora of hitting prospects, while the pitching side is quite thin.
    Civale (controlled thru 2025) or Lorenzen as a rental, certainly seemed affordable from a prospect perspective.

    I love prospects as much as the next guy, but keep this in mind:

    MLB tradeline deals since 2013:
    Prospects traded: 573
    Prospects becoming impact players: 17 (3%)
    Prospects becoming impact players or Contributors: 62 (10.8%)

    • BK

      I’ve read those stats before and they really scream make the trade don’t they. However, I haven’t seen those stats parsed by quality of prospect or level in the minors. I would think someone like Steer, a Top 100 prospect performing well at AAA is far more likely be a solid contributor at the majors than a Rookie level player who may not be on his Team’s top 30 prospect list.

    • JS69

      And 29% of those prospects have never put on a major-league uniform for a game…

    • Redsvol

      I agree with this sentiment @VA. The Tigers didn’t even move Rodriguez so you know the price had to have dropped as they will get nothing for him now.

      I trust Nick Krall. but at the same time a GM that has traded for and developed the talent is always going to have heart-ache over letting 1 go. This is where an organization needs an alternate voice (smart owner or Special Assistant Walt Jocketty) to say we love this prospect but he is a prospect in “A’ ball. Go get the major league starting pitcher! Preferably the 1 with more than 2 months of control . We can afford to let go of 1 good middle infield prospect.

  17. Mike

    Why would any manager leave a young pitcher or any pitcher in a game to give up 13 runs. That is just cruel. Bell is a horrible manager but we are stuck with him. We scored 9 runs. He did not have it tonight. When he walked the first batter in the second you take him out. Just another loss caused by this manager.

    • BK

      Lively is a 31-year old pitcher. Bell left him in to protect the bullpen. The Reds are on Day 5 of 13 straight days with games.

    • VaRedsFan

      Saved the already overworked bullpen 3 more innings. Most of the main guys pitched in game 1 on Monday.

    • SultanofSwaff

      Didn’t make sense to me either. I guess the Louisville shuttle is broken down. Normally Bell would just bring in a Duarte type mopup man to take one for the team, yet Lively was the sacrificial lamb.

    • Chris

      Comments like these actually make Bell look like a genius. That’s how wrong you are.

    • Redsvol

      good grief… you even follow this team?

  18. doofus

    In 2010 and I believe 2012 Walt Jocketty did NOTHING before the deadline to bolster a roster that needed help as it was clear that those Red’s teams were going to get into the playoffs. This year the lack of reinforcing the pitching staff at the deadline (other than Moll) reeks of Jocketty’s reluctance or inability to make some necessary moves.

    I read the comments about not selling the future, but the future is NOW. When a squad is on the cusp of the playoffs a GM must do something to help the roster.

    I cannot believe that there were not controllable pitchers that could have been had.

    There are a number of good prospects capable of playing the majors coming up that there will not be enough roster spots for them if all of them are kept. So why not deal some of them for the pitchers that are needed now?

    The Reds have drafted and traded well for young talent. This year Lowder, Stafura, et al are the next wave of talent to fill the coffers.

    So during the offseason when other teams are fortifying their rosters for the 2024 season, is Krall going to do anything? Are my fellow Reds fans on this esteemed forum going to proclaim once again: “That we cannot mortgage the future and deal away our precious prospects?”

    • Oldtimer

      The Reds acquired Jonathan Broxton in 2012 and called up Aroldis Chapman in 2010.

      You’re simply wrong, Doofus.

      • doofus

        My mistake, I did not realize that WJ did so much to bolster the 2010, 2012 and 2013 playoff squads.

        “Oldtimer,” in your opinion did Walt do enough to help the 2010 and 2012 squads with calling up Chapman and trading for Broxton?

        FYI, it is a lower case “d.”

        Take care.

    • SultanofSwaff

      +1. Not reinforcing a likely playoff team is par for the course with this ownership group.

      • greenmtred

        They did address their most obvious need: a left-handed relief pitcher.

  19. doofus

    The “‘ole” back-handed attempt by Newman in the first was lazy defense. All he had to do was slide to his right a few steps to get IN FRONT of the ball and complete the throw to first.

    I have seen this back-handed stab fail many times. It should only be used when the play at first will be close, when the base runner as speed.

    Why “Newman?” Is Jerry not calling out for you?

    • SultanofSwaff

      He must be learning from Votto, who twice in the last 4 days literally moved out of the way of 2 balls he was directly in front of so he could field them off to the side. The one in LA cost us a run….the one in the 8th monday night almost allowed the tying run to score.

    • Jim Walker

      I think the ball was hit hard enough that he actually had a play at 2B which make it even worse.

  20. doofus

    Stephenson’s throws? Seriously!

    I was hoping for a deal for a young, talented backstop before the trade dealine, because I do not believe TS is the future.

  21. Roger Garrett

    Where our players hit last night was ugly,where they played on defense was uglier and the way Lively pitched was the ugliest of all.The first two we will have plenty of chances to discuss over the next 3 years starting again tonight.Bell went all in Monday night and it worked but you knew Lively would be out there for close to 90 pitches regardless of how he pitched.Yes he took one for the team but its only one game and we play on.Reds have been in a perfect storm all year long.Nine games over in a weak division and with at least 6 pitchers possibly coming back in the next month they still should be right there all the way.Krall has positioned this team for the next few years to be right there every year.Cards are in rebuild with older guys at 3rd and 1st owed a bunch leading the way.Brewers owe Yelich over 25 mil threw 2029 I believe and Burnes and Woodard getting more then 10 mil each next year you could see 60 mil plus to 3 players easily.Reds have money to spend and it all depends on if Bob will do it.If he does then we just ride the storm.Great time to be a Reds fan.I was hoping for one more power arm for the pen but I trust Krall.Antone may be that power arm or even Greene who knows.GO REDS

    • RedlegScott

      Thank you for your sane comment, Roger, including why Lively was left in. And yes, one bad game all the way around doesn’t end the season. Pointing fingers at Bell and Krall is, well, pretty pointless at this point. Haha. Move on Reds fans.

  22. Pete

    I’ve had it. Time to deal a EDLC in CES as well as fire Nick Krall. We will be fortunate if we can finish in last place at this point.

    The Reds need to find a GM that is willing to make big time deals at the trade deadline regardless of the outcome. We want new toys to play with. It was also time to trade these losers (EDLC & CES) before their value completely craters. There is a decent chance we could’ve acquired Justin Verlander for them.

    • RedlegScott

      Plus rescind Bell’s new contract, get rid of the rest of our lousy players, every last one of them, and move the team to Rhode Island. Did I leave anything out?

      • Pete

        Yes, trade Blake Dunn at the soonest possible opportunity. He is obviously overachieving – dude went 0-5 last night – just the beginning of him crashing back to earth. Nick Krall knows nothing about this game. He should come here and read this forum so he can be enlightened!

      • greenmtred

        Covered it pretty well, but I’d add disinfecting the clubhouse to rid it of toxic emanations.

    • Redgoggles

      I would vote to add a goat to make out our daily lineup construction, to replace the monkey/donkey tandem responsible for this years embarrasment.

  23. JS69

    The baseball gods can be funny but often they are right. Yesterday – just one game on a 162-game schedule, aligned to the trade deadline – was really more than just one day in the long grind of a season. Yesterday was a big miss by Nick Krall and the irony of the 20-9 loss, showcasing a completely ineffective Ben Lively, showed us what the next two months may very well look like … courtesy of the baseball gods. How Nick Krall could not take advantage of improving the Reds in a year when the NL Central is up for the taking (the Cards in a down year, the Cubs fumbling their first 90 games, his own Reds very much a surprise) is beyond me. Greene & Lodolo both coming back from injuries (albeit, not arm injuries) is not a sure thing at all. Weaver is terrible. Lively is inconsistent. Williamson fools few and struggles to get thru 5 innings. This was an opportunity lost. Looking at the deals that were made, he could have improved this team without compromising the culture everyone keeps talking about in the locker room. Maybe this was tied to payroll dollars, and ownership did not want to take on more salary – who knows. But assuming that not to be the case, I think Nick Krall swung (did he swing?) and missed just like our prized possession ELDC is starting to do with alarming regularity (more irony, courtesy of those gods again).

    Speaking of ELDC, no one can doubt the electricity he has generated … but the league has clearly adjusted (did so 6 weeks ago actually) and he needs some help in the batter’s box. He’s impatient and swinging at bad pitches. I’m not certain what ELDC what become – again, he has the tools – but right now he seems to be the proverbial struggling rookie needing to make an adjustment, which should start with trying to shorten a pretty big swing. Not every ball needs to have an exit velocity of 115 mph or hit 485′.

    The next two months will be interesting for sure…

  24. RedlegScott

    I’ll say it Pete: The whining is unbelievable.

    • RedlegScott

      (I do like the sound of the Rhode Island Reds.)

  25. J

    I feel like a lot of people are buying this organization’s gaslighting. We’ve seen several deals made for all sorts of players, and several of these deals seemed perfectly reasonable. So, when the organization says there were no good deals to be made, what does that even mean?

    It was disappointing, to say the least, to hear Krall talking about how they were on the phone yesterday at 8:30 in the morning and made “hundreds” of inquiries by phone and text. What that tells me is that they really weren’t very serious over the previous month. How can they still need to propose “hundreds” of deals, or whatever they were doing, if they’d already made several serious offers?

    Anyone who’s taught has heard the same excuse from students who miss deadlines. “I’ve been working really hard, but I need more time.” What this almost always means is “I did almost nothing for the first several weeks, and now I’ve realized how much work needs to be done before the deadline, and I need more time.” I do not believe Krall has been working hard to make a deal happen for the past several weeks despite the fact that it’s been obvious the Reds were likely to be contenders and could definitely benefit from more starting pitching. The bullpen is exhausted in part because they had to cover a lot of innings every time Weaver pitched. Yes, the Reds magically won most of those games, but at what cost?

    People keep defending it by saying they’re glad the Reds didn’t mortgage the future. What are they talking about? The team is winning with the players on the major league roster, and the most important ones are controllable for years. The team will have money to spend on free agents next year, and it would be a PR disaster if they don’t. There are MANY good prospects the team could lose right now and still be good three years from now. And they absolutely didn’t need to trade ALL of them. One deal including the #3 or #4 prospect (whoever that is) would not mean the team has to be bad four years from now It would mean they have a solid major league pitcher for the next two or three years.

    The team may be exceeding expectations, but the fact is that it’s in first place NOW, and when a team is in first place and needs a couple more pieces, it’s the GM’s job to go get them. That’s what every other team does. They don’t say “oh, but we’re not supposed to be winning yet, so let’s wait until next year to get serious about the playoffs.”

    Krall has been a wizard when it comes to trading away major leaguers for prospects, but I’m still waiting to see one deal that proves he can handle the other side of this job. To say the least, he hasn’t done a great job with free agent signings (I’ll skip the list of busts), and the trade for Minor wasn’t exactly a huge win. Unless I’m forgetting something, the trade for Newman is about as close as he’s come to making a solid trade for an actual major league player. Newman.

    So when I hear them say there were no reasonable deals available, I think it means “they all wanted us to pay more than we wanted to pay, and we felt very comfortable not making a deal because attendance is going to be high for the rest of the year regardless.”

    Did some teams overpay in these trades? Yes. And some seem to have underpaid. That’s how trades usually work. They aren’t always exactly even. It’s not a reason to not make trades. Teams that want to win will make trades, and sometimes that means overpaying. If you’re going to be paralyzed by a fear of overpaying, you can’t be an effective GM.

    • Pete

      Sounds like you and I think a lot alike. Krall needs to go! Just because we have gone from +100 losses to August contention in one lousy year, people are giving him the benefit of the doubt. What are they thinking?

      Pointing out the absurd by being absurd.

    • VaRedsFan

      I mostly agree with this, as I stated above.

      Like you said, the time to start looking was a month ago. Royals, A’s, Rockies, maybe a few other teams had already punted on the season. They could have started their poaching then.

      Cedric Benson is trade that has worked out, that you omitted.

      • PTBNL

        I think you mean Wil. We don’t need a running back.

      • J

        I was trying to think of a trade Krall has made for an “established” major league player. Someone we got and thought “oh, good, this guy has proved he can play in the majors. He’s going to help the team right away.” Benson obviously wasn’t that guy. The closest I can think of is Newman. (And I don’t think most people felt “oh, good…”)

        His free agent signings haven’t all been bad, but for the most part they’ve been busts. For whatever reason, his “gift” only seems to apply to identifying and acquiring prospects and fringe players. He’s had a very weak track record when it comes to acquiring veteran major league players who are making well above the league minimum.

      • Tom Diesman

        The following is list of trades made by Krall that returned Major League players:

        Krall was promoted to General Manager on May 10, 2018

        December 12, 2018. The Washington Nationals traded Tanner Roark to the Cincinnati Reds for Tanner Rainey.

        December 21, 2018. The Los Angeles Dodgers traded Kyle Farmer, Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig, Alex Wood and cash to the Cincinnati Reds for Homer Bailey, Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray.

        January 21, 2019. The New York Yankees traded Sonny Gray and Reiver Sanmartin to the Cincinnati Reds for Shed Long Jr. and 2019 competitive balance round A pick.

        July 31, 2019. As part of a 3-team trade: The San Diego Padres sent Victor Nova (minors), Logan Allen and Franmil Reyes to the Cleveland Indians. The Cleveland Indians sent Trevor Bauer to the Cincinnati Reds. The Cincinnati Reds sent Taylor Trammell to the San Diego Padres. The Cincinnati Reds sent Scott Moss (minors) and Yasiel Puig to the Cleveland Indians.

        August 31, 2020. The Cincinnati Reds traded Stuart Fairchild and Josh VanMeter to the Arizona Diamondbacks for Archie Bradley and cash.

        November 25, 2020. The Colorado Rockies traded Case Williams (minors) and Jeff Hoffman to the Cincinnati Reds for Jameson Hannah (minors) and Robert Stephenson.

        July 28, 2021. The New York Yankees traded Luis Cessa and Justin Wilson to the Cincinnati Reds for a player to be named later. The Cincinnati Reds sent Jason Parker (minors) (August 30, 2021) to the New York Yankees to complete the trade.

        July 28, 2021. The Cincinnati Reds traded Case Williams (minors) and Noah Davis to the Colorado Rockies for Mychal Givens.

        March 14, 2022. The Seattle Mariners traded a player to be named later, Justin Dunn, Jake Fraley and Brandon Williamson to the Cincinnati Reds for Eugenio Suárez and Jesse Winker. The Seattle Mariners sent Connor Phillips (minors) (March 29, 2022) to the Cincinnati Reds to complete the trade.

        March 16, 2022. The Cincinnati Reds traded Amir Garrett to the Kansas City Royals for Mike Minor and cash.

        November 18, 2022. The Cincinnati Reds traded Dauri Moreta to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Kevin Newman.

        July 31, 2023. The Cincinnati Reds traded Joe Boyle (minors) to the Oakland Athletics for Sam Moll and cash.

    • greenmtred

      I’m sure trades were there to be had. Krall seems to have calculated that the asking prices were too high. The Reds have highly regarded prospects who, in some cases, will increase in value while adding more flexibility and, perhaps, allowing some guys on the current MLB roster to be trade chips. Of course it’s a gamble: if Greene and/or Lodolo aren’t effective upon their return, and the current, curiously successful rotation falters, it could look like a miscalculation. But a trade is a gamble, too. Time will tell.

      • J

        Trades are always going to be gambles. If you’re paralyzed by a fear of losing a trade when you actually have something to lose, you can’t be an effective GM. Krall has proved he’s good at making trades when the team seems to have nothing to lose, but now that the team actually seems to have something to lose, he’s been unable to get anything done. This, along with his below-average track record for signing veteran free agents, does not inspire much confidence.

        Buying and selling are two different skills, and I’m sure it’s quite possible for a person to be good at one of those things and bad at the other. If you give someone an expensive house and say “this house MUST be sold by August,” and they sell it for a great price, does it follow that if you give that same person a lot of money and say “I’d like you to buy a house before August if you see a house that makes sense for me,” they’ll necessarily do a great job with that? I don’t think so.

      • greenmtred

        You aren’t suggesting he make a trade regardless of how much the Reds have to give up? He can’t dictate what the other team will accept, only what he’s willing to offer. It’s possible, of course, that he’s too enamored of the prospects, but since we haven’t heard any of the details of the proposed trades, it’s premature to assume that he screwed up.

    • Melvin

      Where the Reds really missed out on was Chapman several weeks ago. As I recall it didn’t take “an arm and a leg” to get him. Got to move one now. Bring up Phillips when feasible. I’d try Weaver in the pen before releasing him. Probably don’t need more than four starters in the playoffs. We can move one of our lefties to the pen and make it that much stronger.

      • Tom Diesman

        So you would have swapped Williamson plus a 18 year old killing it in the Rookie level for him?

  26. CI3J

    I didn’t know NFL preseason started already.

    How’d the Bengals give up 20 to the Bears? Looks like they were really missing Burrow too since the only managed 3 field goals.

  27. Roger Garrett

    Santillan with the win in relief and Legumina with a perfect inning on his rehab assignment last night for the Bats.Either could be the long man out of the pen which I feel we need.Fresh arms down the stretch won’t hurt.

    • LT

      Good news. I don’t know much about Legumina but I count on Santillan to be a solid relief pitcher eating up innings. Do yoyou want know when Greene will pitch?

  28. jmb

    Lively took one for the team. That’s EXACTLY what you’d expect from a guy like him, a guy who’s never made his mark in the game, floated around from this team to that, and was signed by a team in the middle of a rebuild.

  29. LT

    Trading deadline day is the most overreacting day in a baseball season. Lively didn’t do Reds fans any favor by having q bad game. But did you see how the Bengals got their behind kicked by the Browns on Halloween night last year? Just like the Bengals, the Reds will make the playoffs but they won’t go far not due to their pitching but rather their lack of offense against top tier pitching.

    • JS69

      The Reds making the playoffs will be tough. Nearly all teams we are competing against (Brewers, Cubs, Padres, D-Backs) improved. No knock on Sam Moll, but we didn’t.

  30. Mark A Verticchio

    A lot of people in the media are killing the Reds on the lack of trades and at the same time using one lousy game to justify their beliefs. Krall made a decision and now good or bad he must live with the results. In my opinion he is taking two huge gambles, 1. he is hoping that in three weeks or so that a bunch of pitchers who haven’t pitched in a while will save this worn out pitching staff and 2. he is hoping that this worn out patch work staff can hold on for another three weeks. In my opinion his mistake might be that number 1 won’t matter if these pitchers can’t hold the fort for 3 weeks or so. We will see what happens.

    • BK

      I will add a third gamble (assumption) he’s made: the Red’s future is bright and not worth mortgaging for marginal upgrades.

      Using hindsight (although I felt this way at the time); the Red should have invested Wil Myers contract dollars in a starting pitcher.

  31. tim

    i would suggest giving both lively and phillips get one more start each – if phillips is as good as he has been – then lively goes down – and phillips comes up. his age shouldnt really matter – the braves have some very young pitchers too. and weaver to the bullpen when greene comes back.

    • greenmtred

      Lively goes down? Recency bias? By that reasoning, Weaver, who pitched well his last start, should be offered an extension and installed at the top of the rotation.

  32. SultanofSwaff

    To me, the front office made two huge assumptions.
    1. The returning injured players will fill the team needs on the pitching side. Somewhat reasonable.
    2. They must truly believe the top 20 prospects only contain players who will not only reach the majors but have positive WAR. This is the one that reeks of overconfidence.

    • J

      Perhaps I’m just too cynical, but I think you’re giving the organization way too much credit. I think the assumptions they made were:

      a) We’re already beating everyone’s expectations by a mile, so if we flop at this point, we can still say we had a great season and everyone will be excited about next year.

      b) Attendance is going to continue to be high for the rest of the year no matter what we do.

      c) If we make a trade and it flops, we’ll look bad. But if we don’t make a trade and say “there were no reasonable trades to be made,” nobody can prove we were wrong, because GMs don’t tattle on each other.

      d) If we don’t make a trade an do well, we’ll look like geniuses.

      Bottom line is that making a trade required taking a risk, while doing nothing was basically risk-free. If the existing players turn out to be enough to carry them into the playoffs, great. If the team misses the playoffs by a few games, how badly is the organization hurt in the long run? In their eyes, not enough to make it worth taking any risks. After all, where are we going to go?

  33. Slicc50

    OK….. after a disappointing deadline day for Reds fans, (myself included.) Thinking about this whole thing I feel better today. This Reds team is just now beginning to enter into their contention window. They are at their “floor” at this time. That being said, they are hanging right in there with the other central division teams. I really believe this team will improve quite a bit down the stretch. Elly will improve plate discipline as he gets more AB’s. McLain, Benson, and Steer are studs. I think they will be fine. Yes, pitching is a worry. They will get a few reinforcements. Greene, Santillan, Tejay, etc. I’m not sure if Lodolo even makes it back this year. Just have s bad feeling about the way it has gone with him. Still… have Graham throwing his cutter now much more often. He looks great. Abbott will be the ace. Williamson is a fighter, he looks better every time out. I really liked his outing against that Dodger lineup. You add Hunter into that mix, that leaves only one guy to worry about. Lively will be an ok #5 down the stretch. Weaver long man? I don’t know. I like our team just as good as any other team in the division!

    I know a lot of people will say “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. I think lineup adjustments need to be made. I would like Will Benson near the top. He needs as many AB’s as possible. Move Elly down to 5-7 for a while to take some pressure off? Now we have to find that lineup that can scratch out runs against the better pitching teams. I am confident this team will make the playoffs! LOL, I can’t believe I said that!

    • Optimist

      Lots to agree with here.

      1 – that game was a palate cleanser – rinse and spit.
      2 – lots of pessimists in the comment thread the past few days – mostly about the deadline – Reds had one acute need and filled it.
      3 – biggest surprise at the deadline is Newman is still on roster – thought there’d be a MiLBer or 2 in return for him.
      4 – and though I’m right in the crowd wanting a DFA, what if Weaver is actually finding his form into an effective 4-4.5 ERA starter?
      5 – they’re going to run out of roster spots on the pitching staff.

  34. Tim

    Last night was a perfect storm. What a night to give up 20 just hours after the trade deadline when we didn’t secure an SP. Almost humorous. I hope it POs these guys and they come out swinging.

  35. GreatRedLegsFan

    As much confidence as Krall has shown in the roster, August will be even more brutal than July and the pitching staff will just collapse. Counting on starters like Lively or Weaver for long is just not sustainable and the injured pitchers, if able to return, won’t do it on time. It’s just frustrating that no trade was made for at least one decent starter.

  36. redfanorbust

    I personally was fine with only making one trade. It’s been commented on many times by others and myself but this is social media so I will say it again. I believe in staying the course with the rebuild plan. Circumstances went against the Reds trading for exactly was needed , SP. Overpays were made for SP due to supply and demand. Reds are getting two of their SP back in what 2-4 weeks or so? There are one or two they can bring up from the minors soon that have promise. Unless we gave up a ton to get a Cease or the like I don’t think making a trade would be all that more beneficial than what we have coming back. I don’t know why Lively suddenly melted down but it changes nothing IMO. We have a really good chance to make the playoffs this year and are stocked for next year with a decent farm system, money to spend and a solidly good young team with a year of experience under their belts.

    • BK

      Exactly. Of all the players traded, very few made sense for the Reds. The Angels got Giolito early and paid handsomely to do so. The Padres never made Hader or Snell available, or if they did, the other 29 teams all found them overpriced—Ditto for Cease. All in all, this was kind of a bland trade deadline which is what one would expect with more teams in contention due to the added wild card spots.

    • Votto4life

      Just curious, what indicates to you that the Reds will spend money this winter?

      You think starting pitching is expensive now just wait until this winter when the Mets, Yankees, Phillies and Dodgers start throwing money at free agents. The Mets will need to reconstruct nearly their entire rotation. Do you really think the Reds will outbid anyone, especially Steve Cohen?

      I suspect the Reds will spend will spend their customary $7.5 million dollars in free agency on
      an over the hill Free Agent that is left without a job as Spring Training starts. Mike Minor/ Will Myers 2.0

      • VaRedsFan

        They’ve had a large payroll in the past….118 million, and maybe even higher in 2020 when they were going for it, before the pandemic interrupted. They’ve always spent when in contention.

        You seem to think they should spend big money during the rebuild period. What good would it do to spend on Verlander the year after you lost 100 games?

        What evidence do you have that they won’t spend in the off season when they plan to contend?

      • Votto4life

        The evidence I would offer is the past few seasons when they traded just about anyone who was making more than the league minimum.

        Do you think the Reds will have a $118 million dollar payroll going into next season? $100 million? I’m guessing their payroll won’t exceed $75 million next season.

        So, pick your number and we will see who is closer on opening day.

      • Tom Diesman

        Why would the Reds spend any money on SP FA over the winter? If they spend any money over the winter it should be on Hunter Greene type contracts for the young players they want to tie up past arbitration who they see as the core players. With Greene/Abbot/Ashcraft/Lodolo/Williamson/Phillips/Richardson they have plentiful arms for a strong rotation in house already. The Reds have such a strong core nucleus of players, they have no need to overspend on past prime players for next season. Maybe they’ll pursue a FA back of the bullpen arm, but anything else would look to be wasted money. I really can’t understand the need to have a high dollar player acquired just to say we have one.

      • Votto4life

        I just don’t get how anyone can look at Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo and pencil them in the rotation next year. What have they accomplished at the major league level to warrant that confidence?

        If the Reds follow the same logic next year, that they followed this year, expect more of Ben Lively and Luke Weaver in 2024.

      • Old-school


        How many wins did you predict the Reds in March?

        Did you say last years team was better than this years team?

      • Tom Diesman

        The MLB Avg ERA for SP this year is 4.43

        Lifetime Age GS ERA ERA+
        Greene 23 38 4.25 106
        Lodolo 25 26 4.31 104

        Those two don’t look like MLB starters?

      • Votto4life

        @ Old School I had this year’s team finishing last, just like most media outlets and people in this group. If you had the Reds winning the NLC, I must have missed it.

      • wkuchad

        Tom, the Reds ‘should’ have a bunch of money to spend this offseason. They don’t need any position players. Starting lineup and bench already likely filled, with leftover players.

        So that leaves pitching as the best way to improve the team. The pitchers you listed (Greene/Abbot/Ashcraft/Lodolo/Williamson/Phillips) are the ones they had at their disposal this year, and starting pitching has been the weakest point of the Reds’ year. And look at all the starting pitcher injuries we had this year (and every other team).

        Let’s assume we start 2024 with all starting pitchers healthy (definitely not a guaranteed assumption). Then you start the year with Greene/Abbot/Ashcraft/Lodolo and one well-above average starting pitcher if you’re able to sign or trade for one. It wouldn’t be a bad thing for Williamson and Phillips to start the year in the minors and be ready as soon as one of the five starters go down (and they will).

      • Tom Diesman

        Add Richardson to the list of young players, he got cut off for some reason. I’d much rather spend that 30M you want to spend on a “well above average starting pitcher” to lock up the key young core players a year or two past arbitration. Especially since Greene and Abbott pretty much fit that description this year, as could Lodolo and Ashcraft next year. You are completely ignoring the additional year of development for these players when trying to equate them as the same group we had available this year. We should expect to see something similar happen to our rotation next year as we saw for our offense this year.

  37. Mark Moore

    Sitting in my hotel at my makeshift desk and have the Bravos game on. Giolito made his debut for the visiting Halos. I say “made” in the past tense because the Bravos are putting on a beat-down like what the Stupid Cubs handed us. Balls leaving the park at an alarming rate. And they’re not even half-way through.

    Just thought I’d share that little gem 😀

    • Roger Garrett

      Braves have the best lineup in the majors and probably have 3 guys in running for league MVP.Good balance between lefties and righties.Once Wright and the lefty return to the rotation everybody else is playing for second place in the NL.Don’t see anybody in the AL beating them in the World Series.Most are home grown with exception of Olsen and Ozuna.Reds just need to get better and go out and get a thumper a proven thumper to hit in the 4 spot along with a vet starter and shore up the pen with more power arms and we will be right there with them.Money should be there to do that.

      • Old-school

        All true… that said,if the Braves hiccup in the playoffs its open season for the second best nl team. Just get there and who knows.

      • TR

        And during the offseason the general consensus of Red’s fandom seemed to be that 2023 would be a lost season.

  38. west larry

    One thing that bothers me, the reds sending Duarte down,. He may have been the only reliever that could pitch three innings.

  39. Redgoggles

    This may not be apples to apples, but what if the Reds traded for an “established 1B or DH” yesterday thereby blocking CES from developing at the major leagues?

    I’m hopeful that was the viewpoint for their pitching depth returning soon. Greene, Lodolo, Santillan for sure, but would indirectly include Williamson and Abbott. Not a massive stretch of imagination to include one of Antone, Gutierrez, Richardson, Staudt, etc.

    Having said that, I’m disappointed they didn’t hedge their bets for a rental starter this year. But mixed with relief that they didn’t go “all in” as I don’t think they are in the same zip code with the Braves yet, so staying comitted to keeping “the plan” on track is reassuring as we’ve seen Bob short circuit rebuilds in the past.

    • wkuchad

      I didn’t want the Reds to go “all in” and sell off the future. Mainly because our entire team is young (besides Votto), and they’re going to continue to improve over next several years.

      And I agree we’re not competing with the Braves. BUT, winning the world series isn’t my definition of success this year. Heck, we’ve surpassed that already this year. At this point, I’ll be disappointed if they don’t make the playoffs. Get some experience, maybe win a game or two, and do even better next year.

      Starting pitching is the one thing that will hold us back from making the playoffs. You can’t assume Green and Lodolo will come back on time. You can’t assume someone else won’t get hurt. All we needed is one starter to slide into the starting rotation now AND act as insurance to get through the end of the season. I’m disappointed Krall didn’t get this done.

      But either way, I’m still excited about the remainder of the season.

      • VaRedsFan

        I’m with you WKU. A rental SP would have done the trick for me. Low cost prospect-wise, and could be a bridge to the end of the season to the playoff finish line.

  40. Jim Walker

    Three of the Reds 4 most recent games have been blowouts in which the losing manager has left his starter in to save his pen and also ended the game with a position player on the mound.

    Managers and pitching coaches have cried, hissed, and moaned for three years since the pitcher limit of 13 on the active roster was announced. They were granted reprieves to a full or partial season with 14 pitchers in successive years to allow organizations to plan and adjust.

    The only planning most organizations apparently did was to set up the option/ IL/ DFA shuttle between AAA and MLB. The league responded by lengthening the minimum option recall delay and IL stay for pitchers from 10 to 15 days. And still, organizations did not change their usage of pitchers. And now the bill has come due.

  41. J

    Now I’m trying to play the “Guess Tonight’s Lineup” game, but it’s harder than usual because I’m toying with the idea that Bell might consider taking Elly out of the leadoff spot, and perhaps even give him a day off. If so, the obvious choice to lead off (from Bell’s perspective) is Newman, but I’m also toying with the idea that Bell might be ready to try something totally different because he’s had enough time to come up with a new theory.

    Could also imagine he starts Benson or Votto even though it’s a lefty starter.

    I’m also wondering if Senzel is going to discover he’s too hurt to play today.

    Nevertheless, despite all the unknown variables, for the moment I think I’m going with:

    EDLC (3rd)
    Senzel (lf)
    McLain (ss)
    Steer (2nd)
    CES (1st)
    Newman (dh)
    Stephenson (c)
    Fairchild (rf)
    Friedl (cf)

    • Indy Red Man

      I’ll take a shot with Benson instead of Freidl tonight

    • Jim Walker

      I’ve got the preview for tonight; and, the 1st thing which jumped out to me when I started populating our standard pitching tables is that Smyly has severe reverse splits (OP/SLG/OPS of .369/.553/.922 for the season representing 22% of the PAs against him). I immediately wondered how Bell might respond to this and also whether EDLC might actually try batting LH against him

      • J

        I honestly don’t think I can recall a game in which I thought Bell was actually paying any attention to the opposing pitcher’s splits. All he ever seems to care about is his own players’ splits. And sometimes he doesn’t even pay attention to those and just plays the righty/lefty matchups no matter what the stats say.

    • J

      Could also be Maile catching and Stephenson DH’ing, in which case maybe Friedl starts on the bench and he just goes 100% righty, which would probably be a dream come true for him.

    • Old-school

      Im going with:

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

      I wont believe Votto sits consecutive nights or plays first base until I see it

      Elly takes a seat against the lefty

      Ive never got one of these correct tho

      • J

        And you still haven’t. But you did get leadoff right, and Votto at 1st base hitting 6th.

      • Jim Walker

        Reds line up posted, Bell went half and half. Votto and Benson in. Freidl, Fraley (and surprisingly) EDLC out

        SP: Brandon Williamson
        1. Kevin Newman (2B)
        2. Nick Senzel (3B)
        3. Matt McLain (SS)
        4. Spencer Steer (LF)
        5. Christian Encarnacion-Strand (DH)
        6. Joey Votto (1B)
        7. Tyler Stephenson (C)
        8. Stuart Fairchild (CF)
        9. Will Benson (RF)

      • old-school

        I got 8/9 players in the lineup correct x benson for Friedl and some cosmetic position/order stuff. Bell is the Swamp Fox for sure. I will get one correct soon.

  42. Tom Reeves

    Lively was an absolute mench last night. Sure, he gave up a bunch of first inning runs and then gave up a bunch more. He didn’t have it. But he sucked it up, told David Bell “I’ve got this,” and went back out and ate innings in a game that was darn near lost from the beginning. He could have wrecked the bullpen and compounded a bad outing. Instead he stepped up and literally took one for the team. With David Bell and his teammates, that effort will not go unnoticed.

    I also loved that the offense kept battling the entire game.

    When people wonder why David Bell was extended – this game is the reason. This game was out of reach nearly from the beginning. The team could have taken a night off. But everyone help working at-bats, running hard, and supporting each other. And Lively earned a massive amount of respect. We probably learned more from this team during this loss than in any other game this year.

    • Pete

      Not a huge Bell fan but no one can argue the guys don’t give their all for him. Lively is a folk hero to me – a real man’s man.

    • J

      That’s a very nice spin. You should maybe work for the Reds’ PR department.

      Another interpretation:

      Bell is so committed to the one-inning-per-pitcher rule, he has nobody who’s capable of pitching three or four innings, and was forced to say to Lively “sorry, man, I can’t take you out.” Since Lively is being paid $720,000 this year and doesn’t want to forfeit the remainder of his contract and burn his bridges with this organization (and probably also has some personal pride), he didn’t defy his manager, and continued pitching until Bell decided it was enough.

      The Reds came back and scored 2 runs to make it 5-2. They didn’t score in the 3rd or the 4th when the game was still not completely out of hand. The next time they scored a run it was 13-2 in the 5th inning, by which point Cubs pitchers were probably trying to just throw it down the middle.

      If Bell was given an extension because his guys try very hard to score runs when they’re down by 11, I think we’ve got a problem.

      • Roger Garrett

        I actually had a very long comment regarding last nights game and how the Reds were asleep in the first inning but never posted it.Last nights game was just ugly from the get go and for me I just file it as such and move on.Lively took one for the team because Bell went all in on Monday and he was out there for 90 pitches regardless.Normally a positive guy but there was no silver lining last night.Cubs were ready to play and we weren’t thus we got pounded.Can we move on.

  43. J

    Assuming Washington doesn’t have a 9th inning rally in them, the Reds are about to be tied for first place.

    • Red Lasso

      Brewers 2 errors in the 9th inning lead to a dramatic walk off win for the Nats!

  44. J

    Nationals! Reds will remain in first place for at least another day.

    • Mark Moore

      That’s a HUGE help. Winning tonight would go a long way toward rinsing the bad taste of last night from our collective mouths.

    • Roger Garrett

      Senzel and Newman both looked lost on defense last night.Senzel is in the right spot and the outfield should be ok.Newman at second after last night is a concern as is him getting 4 or 5 at bats.Joey against any lefty is a risk.Hope both vets make me take back these comments.GO REDS

  45. Indy Red Man

    Santana made an error on the leadoff hitter in the 9th. Brewers blog is hilarious. They’re all over Santana and 3B and everyone else

    • old-school

      Those flashyt trade deadline additions for the angels and Brewers started not so good.

  46. J

    That really is quite a way to lose. The 9th inning consisted of an error, single, walk, and error. Two runs score. Game over.

  47. VaRedsFan

    Giolito 3.2 ip – 8 hits – 9 ER

    • Mark Moore

      It was a beating of the first order. Bravos just couldn’t miss.

    • J

      As much as I think the Reds should have gotten more pitching, it’ll at least provide some solace if all the newly acquired pitchers are dismal failures.

      • Redsvol

        I would rather fail having given up a prospect in “A” ball than fail by doing nothing. There is something to team morale/energy when a player of significance gets added during the season. See it all the time in pro sports.

    • Hanawi

      Braves pretty much pound everyone these days so I wouldn’t take too much from that as an Angels fan.

  48. Jim Walker

    The Reds first look pregame lineup is on up the thread but here it is for folks who look here 1st

    SP: Brandon Williamson
    1. Kevin Newman (2B)
    2. Nick Senzel (3B)
    3. Matt McLain (SS)
    4. Spencer Steer (LF)
    5. Christian Encarnacion-Strand (DH)
    6. Joey Votto (1B)
    7. Tyler Stephenson (C)
    8. Stuart Fairchild (CF)
    9. Will Benson (RF)

    It is an interesting mix of platoon and LH hitters versus Smyly’s reverse splits as an LHP.

    • Rednat

      why not try Benson leading off or batting second, just once?

      • J

        Here are the reasons people keep telling me:

        a) He’s doing well where he is, so don’t mess with it!

        b) The Reds are in first place, so there’s no reason to change anything.

        A lot of people seem to think it’s a bad idea for the Reds to try to improve anything right now, because it might not work. I’ll never understand it. By this logic, they should definitely not replace any of the current starting pitchers with any other starting pitchers, because the current starters have the team in first place.

      • wkuchad

        If Bell decides to move Benson up in the order, it shouldn’t happen against a lefty. Save it for tomorrow.

      • Redgoggles

        I’d imagine keeping the lineup “balanced” even after expected late inning replacements may factor in as well. I’d imagine EDLC, Fraley and/or Friedl will find themselves in these spots by end of game. Unless our starter gives up 13 runs again, of course.

    • Optimist

      Of all the choices, at least Nick is at 3rd. Let’s go Stu and Will – the last shall be first!

    • old-school

      @ Jim. It does appear Bell and Krall really want to send the message that India is still the 2b and Votto is still the first baseman and Friedl is the CF.India is out yet McLain isnt playing 2b at all. Votto sits once but then is back in the 6 hole at first base against a lefty( odd splits but nonetheless) and Friedl played CF against the lefty last night but sits tonight and Fairchild didnt play CF last night agaisnt the lefty.

      There are some absolutes and EDLC as the leadoff hitter seems to be one as well. He wasnt moved down….just resting. Mo Egger the other day on the radio said Bell and most if not all managers dont have universal discretion on making out the lineup. The analytics guys and multiple people contribute. He cited EDLC specifically hitting leadoff and said this was influenced by analytics people. RLN favorite Bryan PRice was interviewed several years ago and said he will never manage again because front offices tell him what to do and how to make the lineup too much and he wont go for that.

      • Jeremiah

        Bell’s not my favorite manager of all time, but I feel bad for him if that truly is the case, that he can’t fill out his own lineup night in, night out. Just a little sad I think, but I guess with all the stats available, you’re playing the statistical odds as much or more so than a feel. I wonder if that’s the case for Bruce Bochy, Dusty Baker though, etc.

  49. Votto4life

    I see Dallas Kuechle is now a FA. I wonder if he has anything left in the tank?

    • wkuchad

      Per MLBtraderumors:

      “Left-hander Dallas Keuchel has opted out of his minor league deal with the Twins, The Athletic’s Britt Ghiroli reports (Twitter link). Minnesota now has a couple of days to decide whether or not to add Keuchel to the active roster, or else release the veteran southpaw. Since inking that minors pact in June, Keuchel has a very impressive 1.13 ERA over six starts and 32 Triple-A innings. His 21.2% strikeout rate and 9.1% walk rate are nothing to write home about, but his 61.5% grounder rate indicates that the 35-year-old is still very capable of keeping the ball in the park. The Triple-A numbers are at least a hint that Keuchel might have something left in the tank, after a 6.35 ERA over 222 2/3 innings with the White Sox, Diamondbacks, and Rangers during the 2021-22 seasons left some impression that Keuchel’s career might be over.”

      Between Weaver’s season and Lively’s last start, I’d give him a try.

      • Rob

        We had a month to decide whether we needed another starting pitcher arm down the stretch. And the answer was a resounding No. keuchel is the bottom of the barrel and via waivers, the Reds would have like the 25th choice. If he is worth anything, 25 other clubs would have to give him a thumbs down. No, this is not our mystery man. We had about 50 guys to choose from that were a heck of a lot Better and we declined.

    • Tom Diesman

      Did the Twins release him yet? Last heard he opted out and the Twins had a few days to decide whether to add him to roster or release him. He’s thrown well in 6 GS at AAA, I’d give him a try over Weaver if they picked him up.

    • Doc

      The fact that he is a free agent should answer that.

  50. Indy Red Man

    It’s a big game, but they’re sitting Elly anyway. I’m glad Bell is did it. Incredible talent, but you just can’t go golfing at every bad breaking ball? I’m sure they’re working with him. If they keep it close then he’s also a big weapon as a pinch-runner and switch into the game

    • Jeremiah

      Yeah I agree…as much hype as there is around him, have to show him he’s just another one of the guys though too, as I think the national hype could go to a young player’s head…not saying De La Cruz is like that, but sometimes you have to be humbled a little bit. He may be the fastest man in the world but right now he’s one of the worst hitters in baseball for the past few weeks I think! Love watching him though, hopefully he can relax and be ready to go when put back in.

  51. Jeremiah

    Cubs are kind of concerning, in that about any night they can clobber you with their offense and power. Average starting pitching is not going to hold them down a whole lot. It’ll be interesting to see if they challenge the Reds and Brewers. I wouldn’t be surprised if they won the division. Swanson and Bellinger are stars when playing well.

    I think Krall was kind of in a win-win position. If this was 2024 he’d have to get a starting pitcher as there would be more pressure. This year, they weren’t expected to be here much like the Orioles when they were in the hunt last year. I think Reds and Orioles though do look a little gun shy wanting to hold onto their prospects, …could keep a team like the Orioles from winning it all. Atlanta and Houston look a little above everyone and then I think teams like Tampa, Baltimore, Dodgers, Rangers, Phillies could potentially win it…Reds, Giants, Blue Jays, Brewers would be real surprises to make the World Series I think.

    I agree with some fans that I think they should have gotten another starter even just an average one, but I don’t think the pressure was on Krall really to do that. Hopefully the Reds stay healthy.

    It will somewhat fascinating to see how the Reds play in the next couple months. We don’t really know how they’ll respond to the pressure aside from any injury, or concerns with the pitching staff getting worn down. De La Cruz will be interesting…I don’t mean to be a pessimist, but there’s a chance he stinks hitting the rest of this season. He’s young and sometimes it takes these guys awhile to kind of learn how to hit at the Majors. Bell has to move him out of leadoff at some point if he continues striking out. I think hitting 7th could be the sweet spot for him if he continues to struggle.

    • Indy Red Man

      SD has really picked it up too. They’re now within 5 of the Reds, but their schedule is tough and hopefully the NL West will beat each other up.

      Santana & Canha are 2-25 out of the gate for Milwaukee….lol

    • David

      I think that is a reasonable view of the situation.
      2024 looks from here, like a strong contending year for the Reds.

      If everyone returns and is physically playing, I think the rotation would look something like this:
      Hunter Greene, Nick Lodolo, Andrew Abbott, Brandon Williamson, Connor Phillips.
      (3 left handers???)
      Pretty young group, but I don’t think we see Lively and especially Weaver back next year.
      There are also some darkhorse alternatives:
      Dunn (will his shoulder EVER heal?), Tony Santillan (he was once a starter), Vladimir Guitierrez (should be pretty recovered from TJ)

      I think there are a couple guys down in AA ball that COULD break through, but I think they get to do the AAA thing, unless the Reds have a rash of pitching injuries in the Spring (count on at least one).
      And there was the guy the Reds drafted in the 1st round that allegedly is “not far” from being ML Ready.
      So… I get why Nick Krall did not go out and trade some hot prospects for a good starter, with maybe limited years of control.

      But if it was my team, maybe I would have. None of use were privy to the actual asking price for another starter.

    • David

      Further about the Cubs….they are HOT now like the Reds were prior to the All-Star break. Will they stay hot? Are they that good? I think their pitching (overall) is better than Cincinnati’s (at this moment in time), and their offense is certainly better (with all the new guys promoted) than Milwaukee’s. You take away Wily Adamses and Yelich, and the Brewers are really pretty weak.

  52. LT

    We were able to get 5 runs off of Steele last night. If we can do that against Smily, I like our chances. If Williamson’s cutter is as effective as it was in the last game against the Dodgers, he can give us a QS. Need to win today as tomorrow is a crapshoot.

    • Indy Red Man

      Smyly had a 6.65 era in July and he’s 5.94 for the season at home. The Reds should be able to do a little damage, but Richardson has to be sharp. He got pretty lucky in LA with a bunch of hits allowed and then bailed out with hard-hit doubleplays. The D needs to show up too and quit giving away extra outs.

      • David

        Saying how important the “D” is…I wish Senzel was the starting 3rd basemen now, with EDLC playing short and McLain playing 2nd. I really don’t want to see Newman out there, but…the lineups are posted and there’s Newman, playing 2nd base and Leading off. EDLC is riding the pines tonight, as is Freidl. But Joey is out there at 1st. CES is DH.
        David Bell, I mean…what the…

  53. Tim

    Do y’all think Maile will be available In relief tonight due to his high pitch count last night?