For the second night in a row we saw backup catcher Luke Maile pitch for the Cincinnati Reds. That’s how you know things did not go the Reds way on Wednesday night. The Cubs clobbered the pitching staff for a second night in a row and took advantage of four errors in a 1-inning span as Chicago picked up a 16-6 victory.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (59-51) 6 9 4
Chicago Cubs (55-53)
16 16 0
W: Fulmer (2-5) L: Farmer (3-5)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After getting pushed around last night, the Reds offense came out swinging on Wednesday evening. Kevin Newman led off the game with a single and then scored on a 2-run homer from Spencer Steer – his 16th of the year. The next inning saw Joey Votto lead off with a 421-foot homer to extend Cincinnati’s lead to 3-0.

In the bottom of the third inning the Cubs started to hit the ball against Brandon Williamson. Jeimer Candelario doubled to lead off the inning. Two outs later it was Christopher Morel hit the ball 414 feet into the seats for his 17th homer of the season and cut into the Reds lead and made it 3-2.

Joey Votto got those two runs back in the 4th inning when he hit his second home run of the game after Christian Encarnacion-Strand doubled in the at-bat right before the homer. That made it 5-2. Chicago, who has been crushing the ball for the last month or so, kept on crushing the ball as Dansby Swanson homered to lead off the bottom of the inning to cut back into the Reds lead.

Brandon Williamson walked Jeimer Candelario to lead off the 5th inning. He then gave up a 1-out single to Nico Hoerner to put two men on. That was enough for David Bell, who made a walk to the mound and called on Buck Farmer to enter the game after just 4.1 innings. The move didn’t pay off as Christopher Morel doubled off the wall in center on a play that seemed to get Stuart Fairchild turned around and come up just short on the play. A run scored on the play to make it 5-4. A ground out followed, but it got the job done and tied the game up as Nico Hoerner scored from third. A strikeout would end the inning.

Buck Farmer returned to the mound in the 6th inning and walked Ian Happ to lead off the inning. Yan Gomes then doubled and gave the Cubs a 6-5 lead. That was it for Farmer as Cincinnati called on Lucas Sims to enter the game. The first pitch Sims threw was hit into center for an RBI single that made it 7-5 for Chicago. Jeimer Candelario followed with a single and then Mike Tauchman came off of the bench and doubled in a run to make it 8-5. Sims would strike out the next two batters before being replaced by Alex Young. The lefty did his job, getting a weak grounder to third base, but Nick Senzel threw the ball away and a play that should have ended the inning led to two more runs crossing the plate and extending the Cubs lead to 10-5.

In the top of the 7th inning TJ Friedl came off of the bench to pinch hit for Stuart Fairchild and clubbed a 1-out solo home run to cut into the Chicago lead. The Cubs almost immediately got that run back as noted Reds killer Ian Happ hit a solo homer to lead off the bottom of the inning. They weren’t finished yet. Jeimer Candelario singled and then scored on a Mike Tauchman double that was misplayed by Jake Fraley. Then for the second straight inning a grounder to Nick Senzel that should have ended the inning was thrown away and led to a run scoring on the play. On the next play Senzel got another chance and this time he couldn’t come up with it and his fielding error led to another run scoring on the play and it was 14-6 just like that. An infield single and then a throwing error on Joey Votto put runners on the corners. That was it for Alex Young, who was replaced by Derek Law after watching the Reds commit four errors behind him in one inning or relief.

The Reds turned to catcher Luke Maile to pitch in the 8th inning and the second pitch he threw landed in the seats as Ian Happ hit his second homer of the game and made it 15-6. After getting a fly out from Yan Gomes, Seiya Suzuki hit a ball out of the park for his 9th home run of the season to make it 16-6.

In the top of the 9th inning the Reds got a 2-out single from TJ Friedl and Will Benson followed up with a walk, but Jake Fraley grounded out to end the game. With Milwaukee’s loss earlier in the day, Cincinnati remains in first place.

Key Moment of the Game

The bottom of the 6th inning when the Cubs scored five runs to take an 10-5 lead.

Notes Worth Noting

Joey Votto’s home runs gave him 353 in his career and moves him past Ryan Braun and Ellis Burks into a tie with Torii Hunter for 94th all time.

Less than an hour prior to the start of the game the Reds placed Ben Lively on the injured list with a strained pectoral muscle. That’s the same injury that cost him a little more than two weeks earlier this season. Daniel Duarte was recalled to take his place.

Tejay Antone threw a perfect inning of relief tonight in Louisville and had a strikeout.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Chicago Cubs

Thursday August 3rd, 8:05pm ET

Luke Weaver (2-3, 6.80 ERA) vs Jameson Taillon (5-6, 5.46 ERA)

106 Responses

  1. Mike Caldwell

    Maybe the last two nights show the Reds needed a lot more pitching help than they were going to come up with in trades. In an odd twist, it bolsters the front office decision to not trade away top prospects.

    • Mark A Verticchio

      In other words you are saying that this year is over and the fans should be satisfied with what has happened thus far. You might be right and this could easily be an August to forget, it sure has started that way. I am still saying that by the time Greene gets back it will be to late. Cubs and Brewers to battle it out for the Central with Reds lucky to play .500 it is sadly very possible.

      • Mike Caldwell

        No, that is not what I said. I said the improvements they could gain by trade were not worth the cost.

    • Erik the Red

      Concur. We are a lot more than one starting pitcher away. However would two of our 11 through 20 prospects for a Lorenzen type been the end of the world? Not sure we need to keep stock piling right handed bats

      • MFG

        Not sure we need another injury prone starting pitcher like Lorenzen. Reds fans know Lorenzen well and he was always hurt. Maybe we stay with the youth movement and bring someone up from the minors?
        Help is on the way with Antone, Vlad, Greene and Lodolo so we just need to tread water.

    • Indy Red Man

      Over 2 games? That’s a loser mentality. They’re in 1st place and have a juicy schedule in September. They could’ve definitely used a little boost. Maybe Phillips and Antone and the returners can do it

      • RedlegScott

        Agree, Indy. The Cubs offense is hitting on all cylinders. If we win tomorrow, it’s a split. Why all the drama? Chicken Little syndrome.

    • Private Gripweed

      So they’re getting better in a weird way?

      • Mike Caldwell

        Not sure how you could have read that into my post.

  2. Optimist

    “With Milwaukee’s loss earlier in the day, Cincinnati remains in first place.” Sometimes baseball’s a funny game, and there’s another game tomorrow.

    • Mario

      Yes! First place. Try to stay positive Reds fans. This is a tough road trip. 4-5 by my count. Unlikely to win today but if they do, 5–5 looks really good.

  3. TJ

    Hopefully the Reds win tomorrow and the cubs would’ve gained nothing. Weaver has been the worst starter. They’ve won a ton of his starts and he had one of his best starts last time out. Lively was pitching hurt and was placed on the IL. Senzel must not have had his head in the game. Elly and TJ didn’t start tonight’s game. They’ll be ready to go tomorrow. Cubs play the Braves next. I’m not worried. Let’s see who the brass replaces Lively with. Reinforcements are coming. Reds will be much better soon just by staying pat.

  4. Jim Delaney

    Time to just rotate position players on the mound, David Bell finds making a mockery of the game funny. Two straight nights you bring in the same non pitcher to throw batting practice anc laughing about it in dugout. Clearly the manager cares about winning the same as the front office and ownership group. Still remember Phil Castellini telling the Rosey Reds, the Reds are running a non profit.. 2023 will be second season in last three years where Reds were sitting in playoff position at trade deadline and did nothing and team folded after the lack of help.. can’t wait to see Cubs dismantle Reds a third straight game tomorrow when they take Luke Weaver to the woodshed.. can’t wait to see Maile on mound for a 3rd straight game..

    • greenmtred

      Interesting take on what was, ostensibly, a move made to save wear on his bullpen.

    • Tar Heel Red

      Maile, after pitching two straight days, may not be available for Thursday’s game. That may tax an already overworked bullpen…

      • greenmtred

        They have Casali ready just in case.

    • JB

      The Reds lost. Whether it’s 39 runs or 10 runs it’s counted the same. If they win today they split the series and that will kill the Cubs mentally. The Cubs have played this series knowing they need it more than the Reds. If Reds swept , the season is over for the Cubs. Problem for the Cubs is going to be the let down after the series. It always happens. Teams put everything in to the series they need and can’t back it up the next series. Problem with the Cubs is they don’t beat the teams over 500. The Reds are still in first and there is a third of the season left with major help on the way. It’s not going to be a runaway for one team. Games like these always happen to every team because it’s a long year. I’m just happy to be in first place on August 3rd!!!! With a bunch of rookies playing every day!!!!

  5. Melvin

    Don’t despair. We’ve got Weaver pitching tomorrow. We’ll probably only need about 21 runs to win. :)..He did pitch well last time. Hopefully he will gain.

    • Rick

      I’d say Newman will be the long man tomorrow just in case. Maybe he can develop a cutter tonight.
      I hope that we have an A team lineup tomorrow ie; defensive guys that know that clunky ipark & heckling crowd.
      There are no exceptable loses but inevitable ones. But 2 demoralizing loses in a roll is tough on the psyche of a young team now being the hunted. That’s a new stress load hoisted upon on them. Gotta dig deep tomorrow & stay focused. Bad play can become contagious as we saw tonight from pressing after physical & mental errors and guys not . Williamson was pitching well enough to go deeper in the game but giving up a seeing eye single just unhinged David(group hug Bell). And the snowball effect started to unravel by an overused bullpen

    • greenmtred

      Weaver should never cause despair, Melvin. Incredulity at times, yes. Relief and surprise at least once. But despair?

  6. Melvin

    “Tejay Antone threw a perfect inning of relief tonight in Louisville and had a strikeout.”

    Very good news. 🙂 it’s going to be roster crunch time when all of these guys start coming back.

    • Melvin

      Not to mention new guys like Phillips coming too.

      • Rick

        Yes. And we need to be patient with his effort.

    • Rick

      And Casali will return when Hunter gets activated to be his personal catcher.

  7. J

    I’ll just keep saying it: the time to get pitching help wasn’t yesterday, it was a month ago. The Reds won most of Weaver’s starts, yes, but at what cost? How many games after Weaver’s starts did the Reds lose because Bell had used 7 pitchers to cover 6 innings? And how many of those guys are now somewhat fatigued because they’ve had to make so many appearances? And how many times has Bell left in a starter who clearly had nothing, such as last night, because he didn’t want to further tax the already overused bullpen?

    This team’s “no urgency” approach is so annoying.

    I know, I know… the “prices were too high.” No team in baseball was willing to make a reasonable deal for one legitimate starter. Not one. For a whole month. And the prices were still “too high” yesterday — except for every other team in first or second place, who all thought the prices were reasonable.

    • SultanofSwaff

      THIS. Lively was chapped that he was left in so long and you have to wonder if that contributed to his injury. Bell clearly prioritized his bullpen over Lively’s well being….I’d be angry too. And whatever happened to shuffling guys back and forth to Louisville with frequency in order to cover innings in blowouts? Was working all season but hasn’t been used much lately.

      Now I wouldn’t say Williamson didn’t have anything, but what stood out to me was using Alex Young for nearly 30 pitches when they were already down 5.

      Seems to me Bell is breaking with the usual regular season protocols (i.e. using your high leverage relievers ONLY when you have a lead) a lot lately. Gotta wonder if he’s panicking/getting greedy because of inexperience with playoff chases.

      • Larry Ricketts

        Totally agree Bell has a track record of wearing out the bullpen. Having only to lefties in the pen, it made no since to leave an ineffective Young in that long.

  8. Andrew Brewer

    Putting position players on the mound is saying that the game is essentially over. But the game goes on. If the Reds didn’t have anyone available, it might make some sense. But otherwise just forfeit the game. It does make a mockery of big league competition. I have never liked it, and I don’t condone it. Put a pitcher up there or walk off the field…

    • VaRedsFan

      They would probably prefer to walk off the field, but that isn’t allowed.

  9. KevinIn

    I was at the game tonight. Senzel got into with a fan in the stands after his third inning. The Reds fan, who was apparently heckling him, was kicked out of the game. I have no idea what was said but Senzel got very emotional and probably should have ignored.

    Cubs fans were
    pretty good. Drunk guy said crappy things about Votto and he hit dingers both times.

    Lots of drunken Cubs fans but mostly good natured. A few “Reds suck” which as definitely been the case last couple of nights. Cubs fans had a lot of fun tonight.

    • KevinIn

      Should have read after Senzel’s third error. Not sure how to edit.

    • Jeremiah

      I saw Senzel made some comments about not playing as much as he’d like, andbasically asking to be traded before the deadline…I think he chose his words somewhat wisely, but I thought a little unfortunate for that story (on to come out the day after the trading deadline. It was unfortunate Max Scherzer kind of throwing the Mets under the bus, and while Senzel didn’t throw the Reds under the bus, I don’t think it was too wise of him to speak at this time on his playing time. Then making a couple errors tonight…Senzel and India are pros, but the pressure of guys taking their jobs may effect them a little negatively down the stretch. Hopefully not though.

      • Doc

        Understand that any player wants regular playing time, but Senzel has not earned it whereas others have and have surpassed him. Perhaps he can get regular playing time in AAA until the end of the season and then traded to the Royals or A’s.

      • Larry Wade Ricketts

        Senzel should have been traded, along with fairchild. Neither have the tools to be everyday players. Senzel has had plenty of chances over the past few years he is what he is. .250 15hrs 15SB’s gets hurt often. A change of scenery may help his career, and help the Reds get something that will help out. Fairchild should still be in AAA. He is 27 may by time to move on. Why not bring up Ramos, hitting over .300 more power and a switch hitter.

      • Mario

        agreed Doc. If his attitude is bad, then send him packing to AAA. That’s the last thing this team needs. And Lively can be a little miffed at being left in to give up 13 but in both occasions, this needs to be kept to self

      • Melvin

        No way Senzel should be playing regularly over these other guys. He already had a gazillion chances anyway.

  10. Jeremiah

    Kinda strange the Cubs and Brewers are dominating the Reds in very different ways…meanwhile the Reds have played pretty well against all other contenders. Cubs look like the favorites in the NL Central when you look at their run differential and star power in middle of the lineup, but their pitching isn’t great either.

    My biggest concern is the Reds will like 2021 just fall apart and not even be in the race by mid-September. I think Bell’s management of this team is going to be a key with managing the ups and downs, personalities, etc. The collapse of the 21 team still concerns me with Bell’s managing. That and the pitching of course.

    Really don’t know what to expect going forward…it should be interesting! Hopefully we’re not seeing Luke Maile too much more 🙂

    I’d be shocked if the Reds win tomorrow…but would give a little more hope that they’ll stay in the race till the end. Perhaps a rain out would be good for the Reds tomorrow!

  11. KevinIn

    Outs or not I think defense suffers when EDC is not in the lineup.

    After tonight’s performance and reacting to a fan, Senzel needs to sit for like a month.

    • Rick

      Elly brings the D for sure even through his offensive inconsistencies. Energy, effort, hustle. are always played up to a high standard

      • greenmtred

        Brantley said last night that Senzel is their best fielding third baseman.

      • VaRedsFan

        He did say that….before the 3 errors though.
        I think most on here would have said that.
        But now it’s become a mental issue IMO.

      • Mario

        Brantley is entitled to his opinion and it’s an opinion that I value but his opinion doesn’t make it factual

      • greenmtred

        I agree, I guess. But Senzel had looked good at third prior to last night (and even last night he made two sparkling plays). So maybe he was distracted? Or maybe he just screwed up: everybody does that from time to time.

  12. RedlegScott

    Two games is two games. We bounced back from losing six. Next.

  13. Gpod

    I was never a Bell fan….I still feel he should pay the price for the collapse down the stretch 2 years ago & then followed that up with a 100 loss season…I thought this would be his last year….but figured he would get an extension when the team was in first place after the all-star break…..but a 3 year extension was absolutely not necessary….2 years was more than enough. What happens if he leads the team to another monumental collapse down the stretch?

    • Larry Wade Ricketts

      Totally agree, it has to be a money thing. I have never seen him do anything from a manager prospective to win a game. Inconsistent line ups, terrible with a bullpen, They win in spite of him not because of him.

  14. Chris

    Bell has got to stop pulling his starters so early. There was NO reason to pull Williamson in the 5th inning. The game blew up from there. And hopefully this will put an end to the continuous love affair with Fairchild also.

    • greenmtred

      I have to disagree, Chris. There was certainly a reason to pull Williamson whether we know the reason or not.

      • Harry Stoner

        Of course, there was a reason to pull Williamson.

        There’s a “reason” for everything that is done, correct?

        Whether something is a “good reason” or not is another matter.

        I hope we’re not back to the “Bell knows!” kinds of rhetorical counterpoints here.

        “There must be a reason Bell did x,y or a because he’s the manager!”

        I admit, I don’t understand or share the Fairchild faith here on RLN, but banishing a guy because of a costly error would pretty much empty the roster.

        Folks have touted SF’s D here and do backflips dissecting the microclimate of Wrigley in order to cover for him.

        Maybe SF just misplayed the ball? Just like Friedl did.

        No reason to give up on the guy.

        He’s got another week to produce before India is back.

        There’s some clear areas of redundancy betwixt Senzel, Newman and Fairchild.

        I think folks were hoping someone would get moved and open playing time up for their favorite.

        Take your pick.

        The S-N-F trio has been looking a little rusty out there.

        As Archie Bell and the Drells sang, it’s time to do the Tighten Up!

      • greenmtred

        As for the reason, Harry, yes, that was my point. Bell, DJ, the catcher and Williamson himself unquestionably know more than we do about his fitness to go further in the game. That was also my point.

    • Jim Walker

      And Friedl goes with Fairchild too? The night prior over in the other gap, he came up empty on a play that looked easier than the one Fairchild didn’t complete Wednesday.

      Both those guys have shown themselves to be strong at a wall or fence in previous situations. I have to believe there is something which makes playing a fly ball near the wall across the gaps unexpectedly difficult at Wrigley. Maybe the basket obscures vision at a critical point. Maybe there is a draft created by the CF superstructure or a combination of those factors. How does a ball even get under the edge of the basket to hit as high on the wall as the one did on Wednesday??

      • greenmtred

        Jim: Brantley said the other day, after Fraley’s near-catch, that outfielders have to be wary of the wall in Wrigley because they caught by the vines when they’re jumping for the ball. I didn’t see the play being referenced, but I wonder if that could have been a factor. Fairchild and Friedl are both strong defenders.

      • Jim Walker

        @Green>> Good take. SF definitely tangled with the wall because at the end of the inning, the TV followed him off the field; and, he had a nasty looking abrasion on the outside of one of his elbows.

        It looked like his jump could have been impeded as it had an unnatural awkward appearance. The ball hit at about the same vertical level on the wall as he got his glove to but was maybe a foot to the CF side of his glove. It is quite plausible he was trying to extend and turn to his backhand and got snagged by the vines/ wall. That would certainly explain the glove being high enough but a foot off the ball.

    • Mario

      Nick Kirby pointed out that on Monday, Bell did the same with Abbott and fans didn’t have a problem with it because it worked. The problem here is not designating someone the long relief guy who can come in and give this team 2-3 innings or more if the starter has a bad game.

      If Abbott and Ashcraft slump in August, this team is in big trouble. The Reds are in 1st place- Not panicking yet. Games vs Nationals, Marlins, Guardians, and Diamondbacks should help matters at least theoretically.

  15. LT

    Tough loss. Cubs swinging hot bats so give them credit. I am most disappointing with Williamson in that offense gave him an early lead and he was not aggressive enough and let a few men on base via walk, then needed to make a pitch but couldn’t. There was no reason for him not to be aggressive when the bases were empty. Solo HRs would not hurt. Obviously Senzel had a rough night but I feel like Williamson didn’t do a good enough job to go after the hitters with an early lead and let the Cubs into the game.

  16. CI3J

    No matter if you lose 100-0 or 1-0, it’s still counts for just one loss.

    Last 2 games have been a fluke, and I’m not ready to read too much into them.

    However, if the bullpen keeps getting blown up over the next few weeks, then I’ll start to believe Bell has run them into the ground and this is the result of pitchers who have nothing more to give.

    I’m already inclined to believe that, but I’m not ready to say we’ve reached that point yet just based on two games.

  17. Frank

    A bit weird to jump on the complaining train after two lopsided losses. We lost 6 in a row and jumped back very nicely. We just took 2 of 3 from the dodgers at their place. And still complain???

    Maybe these two games show how much we miss India as the team leader?

    Yes the cubs are hot right now, am I think they might be the biggest competitor to win the division, but there is no reason to just give up on the season.

    Have some faith, baseball is a funny game where after a 36 run sequence you all of sudden have a 1 hit shut out. (Not most likely by weaver though).

    • mac624

      YOUTH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I’ve said this before, and now with India hurt, it’s gonna be a rough patch as the youth learn to win in tough situations. Passionate fans ride the highs and lows, but most hot takes on message boards, good or bad, or way off base to what is actually happening and what will happen in the future. The comments are funny though, especially when not taken seriously.

  18. Reddawg2012

    It kind of feels like the wheels are falling after two games in a row like that. Against the Brewers, it seemed like the Reds were pressing a bit and could not catch a break. Against the Cubs, it feels like they are way overmatched. Like, worse than when they played the Braves. I don’t know.

    Maybe all the travel has something to do with it? They are finishing up a 3 city, 10 game road trip. Maybe they’re tired? This is obviously a young team trying to balance taking care of their bodies, working through the grind of the season (which I’m sure is setting in now), and also keeping pace in a tight pennant race. They do have quite a few off days coming up after this weekend. I really don’t know, I’m just trying to look for hope, because this feels really bad.

  19. TR

    The pitching situation has come home to roast. The result, a collapsed bullpen with those getting it done often used for only one inning.

    • greenmtred

      So lets see if I have this right: the bullpen is worn out and the solution is to have them pitch multiple innings instead of one?

      • greenmtred

        Not at all. It seemed to be what you were implying. I do get the theory, though it relies on assumptions, but the problem I see with it is that the Reds’ pen, like probably most or all pens, has a hierarchy of consistently effective performers–limited in number–and other guys who are good sometimes but not consistent enough to be relied upon with the game on the line. A relief pitcher who pitches multiple innings either won’t be available for the next game, leaving the team more vulnerable.

      • greenmtred

        Memo to myself: either…or what? Don’t you proofread? Meant to say “or will quickly become truly worn out.”

  20. Jim Delaney

    Bell handling of the last two games has been horrible. The Tuesday game was over but he decided to throw Moll in a blowout and letting Cubs see him. Moll should have been the first guy out of the bullpen last night to replace Williamson. The lack of starting pitching is an ownership and front of problem but handling the bullpen and managing game is the manager’s job. The front office also needs to make decision to have a real long man in the bullpen. Cubs have two former starters Assad and Wesneski in there bullpen. Stoudt or Kennedy or both should currently be in Reds bullpen instead of 8 one inning relievers. Can’t believe the front office and Manager don’t see that..

    • Indy Red Man

      Pitchers need to pitch. You hold Moll out for a week and guess what? Another leadoff walk as he tries to work the rust off. Nobody replaced a lefty with a lefty

    • Indy Red Man

      Totally agree on a long man. They tried 2 innings with Duarte and a few others, but they can’t handle 40+ pitches

    • Tar Heel Red

      <Jim Delaney…agree with your comment 100%, except to add that Bell's handling of the pitching staff has been an ongoing problem all season. Case in point…

      1. There are eight pitchers in the National League that have appeared in 50+ games, and four of them are Reds…Farmer, Diaz, Gibault and Young. The only reason a fifth Red is not on the list is because Sims (46 games) missed the first month or so of the season…

      2. Bell routinely shows no confidence in his starters. Last night was, by my count, the ninth time he has pulled a starter before they could complete 5 innings and had thrown less than 80 pitches. Now I realize that Bell is not the only manager that does this due to their absolute "blind adherence" to not allowing a pitcher to face batters the third time through the batting order. I have said it many times, but it bears repeating again that a successful skipper manages the game being played in front of him, and not according to numbers on a spreadsheet.

      3. It has been intimated that the players love playing for David Bell. I suspect that may be true of the position players, but I would be willing to wager that if the Red's starting pitchers were polled (and they were to give an honest response) the results might be quite different.

      Stated plainly, that among his many weaknesses as a manager, David Bell simply does not have the ability to successfully manage a pitching staff, and I believe the problem is now coming home to roost. Just my opinion…

      • greenmtred

        MLB managers as a group show no “confidence” in their starters. Starters average less than 6 innings per start. Young pitchers, per Brantley, are now conditioned to pitch 75-80 pitches, likely because of the undeniable impact of a pitcher facing a team the third time through the batting order, along with the high-velocity, high spin rate style so in vogue. Your argument is, I should think, hard to make considering the success of the patchwork starting rotation and the bullpen this year. If the trend of the past two–two!–games carries forward, it will raise some questions, of course.

  21. Indy Red Man

    1. The Cubs are hot. They might be the best team in the division. Candelario is pretty solid
    2. Reds went all the way to the West coast for 1 series and then back with no day off
    3. Our platoon guys vs lefties are rusty since we haven’t seen many lefties lately

    No reason to panic. We’re getting some arms back. They just have to shore up the defense.

    Also not sure why everyone is piling on Fairchild. Fraley and Freidl did the same thing Monday. Wind blowing out and you’re on the wall with the ivy. A win today would be nice

    • Jim Walker

      The most ironic thing about those two balls at the wall in opposite gaps (Monday or Tuesday) and Wednesday is that a guy with his glove on his left hand, i.e. Fairchild, probably catches the ball Friedl i.e. right gloved, didn’t. And conversely, a guy with his glove on his right hand, i.e. Friedl, probably catches the ball Fairchild, i.e. left gloved, didn’t.

      As I already said up the thread, there has to be some park factor that comes into play between the gaps there in Wrigley as guys try to play balls at the wall. Maybe the basket obscures vision at a critical point or a down draft created by the scoreboard and CF infrastructure.

      • Melvin

        Maybe they’re afraid of running into a brick wall….literally. I guess it’s going to take a very serious injury to someone before they finally change/fix that.

  22. Mark Moore

    Another “wipe this day off the books” kind of game. Win today and we return home still in first place with the Stupid Cubs no closer than they were. We get the Nats and they get the Bravos. Enough said on that.

  23. Hotto4Votto

    The exact opposite response you’d hope to see immediately after the FO put its confidence in the pitching staff.

    • Indy Red Man

      I was bored yesterday and put together some numbers for their remaining schedule.

      2-4 Cubs
      3-3 Pirates
      3-3 Cards
      1-2 Jays
      1-2 Angels
      1-2 Twins

      And they still finished 87-75 which should get them in

      • Mark Moore

        What about the Nats series we start tomorrow?

        I do like our chances with the remaining schedule. I still think the Stupid Cubs will fall victim to the 2023 World Series favorites Hotlanta Bravos. That will bring them back down to Earth.

  24. AllTheHype

    Most of the comments here read like an obituary. It’s a couple games in a season of ups and downs. So far we’ve had more ups than downs. No need to get too excited.

    • Pete

      Cubs bats are red hot. If they continue to hit like this, no one‘s going to stop them anytime soon. Interesting, they play the Braves after this series and we will see what is what. Like you said, I’m not getting too excited right now because I think these guys would hit the best pitching out there. It’s really very remarkable to be honest.

    • greenmtred

      We seem to be an excitable bunch, ATH, given to rapid and emotional mood swings. They probably have medication for that, but I think people are enjoying themselves. The contrast, should the Reds reel off a few wins, will be striking. On the other hand, if these two losses become a tail-spin, I fear that Reds’ fans, like bipedal lemmings, will flocking to cliffs and bridges and flow in droves over the edge into oblivion.

  25. Redsvol

    Senzels mind is not on competing in every play. He should have been traded if he can’t accept that he will get 10-15 at bats a week. Regardlesss if what the return was. Now we have a me first attitude in the clubhouse for rest of the year. He was never going to have more trade value than he had on July 15th.

    Obviously India’s presence is more important than many of us realize.

    I think someone already said but Williamson nibbled too much with the lead.

    Cubs are hot and bullpen is tired. In the middle of a long stretch with no days off. We need some pitching help asap. Offense is fine – well except for senzel and Stephenson.

    • BK

      Senzel has options. If he needs to play more to improve Louisville is an option. The timing of his interview with Mark Sheldon and his inept play at 3B last night are really unfortunate. His defense at 3B, ability to LHP, and versatility are his keys to a major league roster spot. The reality is that he’s closer to AAA than earning more playing time.

  26. Doc

    Second time with same strain for Lively, and with Greene and Lodolo anticipated to come back in the next 2-4 weeks, may well have seen the last of Lively in 2023. Shame if he finishes his season on the heels of the 13 run debacle.

    • Indy Red Man

      He didn’t have a future anyway. Too many young arms much better then his plus Antone. The kid from Wake is going to push somebody else into the pen next year…maybe Williamson?

  27. Soto

    I officially take back my comments about Senzel’s best position being 3rd. I think his best position would be 3rd if he played it regularly, but that is not going to happen on this team with Elly, Steer, Newman, CES, etc on the roster. He really is the odd man out. The Reds need to bounce back and find a way to split the series. I would love to see an opener today Weaver but we all know that isn’t going to happen. When does Phillips get called up?

    • SultanofSwaff

      Phillips started two days ago just like Lively. Makes perfect sense to slot him into the rotation.

      • SultanofSwaff

        Phillips has 92IP this year (109 last year). 10 relatively effective starts (6 innings each) would leave him at ~150 for the year. I would consider that a reasonable workload increase.

  28. RedBB

    Krall is looking like a genius now….NOT

  29. Soto

    I am a big Votto supporter but I think it might be time for Votto to mainly DH. Steer has been excellent all year at 1st and CES is probably the 1st baseman of the future. Votto just has zero range anymore.

    • SultanofSwaff

      For me, it’s not even his range but the fact that he chooses to field balls off to the side rather that stand in front and block them. Literally fielding 101 type stuff that cost the team a run in LA.

      Kinda crazy Joey has a 0.970 OPS vs. LHP this year, albeit a 31 AB sample size. OPS+ is now at 123. Good stuff.

      • Indy Red Man

        Joey/CES 1b/DH, but then Steer at 2B the other day was confusing? I’m thinking CES at 3B would be better then Steer at 2B

      • Redlegs1869

        100% agree on the fielding off to the side issue. Been watching that for years. It’s really almost like he’s afraid of the ball. Love Votto, as all Reds fans do. And wow, can he still surprise us with an offensive game like last night. And off a lefty. Yes to shrinking his time at 1B.

  30. west larry

    I’d like to win today, but if we lose, we are still in the race for central first place

    • RedBB

      We could lose the next 5 games and we would still be in the race…and?

  31. Mark Moore

    Ironic, but sitting here with an episode of M*A*S*H on yesterday, I heard the Frank Burns line I use in these situations … Stink. Fish. Pot!!!

    That at least made me smile even if I had to Clete for the 2nd game in a row last night.

    • greenmtred

      Frank never got the credit he deserved as an evaluator of unexpected reversals.

  32. Redgoggles

    Really glad we chose the first game of this series to experience Wrigley for the first time!

    I think our plate discipline has really slipped over the past few weeks. This has resulted in our offense being more hit/miss and providing less constant pressure throughout the game. As a counter, last night the Cubs were not offering at very close 2-strike pitches early in the game, forcing Williamson further into the zone and shortened his outing and we all saw what happened (can’t unsee that.)

    Elly is the poster child of this, but they are all guilty. Even Benson – who has arguably been giving them the most disclipined at bats – expanded yesterday and K’d 3 times.

    Not sure if this is the league adjusting, the youth/aggressiveness/inexperience is showing or they are getting distracted by the viking HR poses. But, it would really be nice to reduce the swinging at pitches out of the zone and take more walks.

    Weaver against the Cubs. Hope the wind is blowing in. Gale force winds.

  33. Jim Delaney

    Hope the crown jewels we held onto in A ball or lower are legit when the current rookies leave via free agency or are trade for prospects in five years. If you are a Reds player on current MLB team you have to look at Reds ownership and front office and shake your head that they don’t want to win. You are in first place at deadline and you don’t acquire a starting pitcher or even a long man.. Unwilling to take on a rental makes no sense… But the media will give Reds ownership and GM a pass because it’s a young team.. when you have a chance to win. You go for it. Unfortunately Reds are owned by the majority group of the Castellini’s and Williams and winning isn’t part of there DNA…a non profit organization they shall continue to be..

    • Optimist

      The acute need at the deadline was a LHRP – got that. Next need was the “long man” – unless that’s Phillips or Richardson this week, that’s a failure. Next need after that was a SP – a lesser failure since 1 – they have so many coming back soon, and 2 – the prices were too high, and 3 – they sign Keuchel.

      But, the Senzel situation may prove most interesting.

      • BuzzKutter

        Still leading the division in spite of playing poorly the last 2 games. Regardless of the pitching the one thing that has to change is the constant swinging at ball 4.

    • RedBB

      Yep. Look at what Michael Lorenzen cost…some A+ infielder named Hao-Yu Lee. His stats are OK but he wouldn’t be near our top 20 prospects. You telling me Krall wouldn’t give up more than Hao-Yu Lee? That’s pathetic IMO…

  34. Jim Delaney

    Reds were unwilling to take on a rental. Whether this was due to ownership unwilling to take on salary is a question that hadn’t been asked by ownership directly. The rentals were traded for minimal return. Reds wanted pitchers who weren’t rentals and thought they could get that with India and fringe and they were rebuffed.

  35. LeRoy

    I can see holding on to the many good prospects the Reds have. Even the ones up now haven’t proven themselves yet. Encarnacion and Cruz haven’t made adjustments to their strike zones and McClain still strike out too much. Even Steer,Benson, India, and Stephenson haven’t proven themselves yet. All the young guys need to improve and show they are truly major league material before the Red begin trading off Arroyo, Marte, and others who may be able to step in and be better major leaguers than the current group. The same goes for the young pitchers. Will Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft, and Abbot finish this year and step in as solid major leaguer pitchers next year? Don’t be too hasty and assume all these current prospects will turn in to major leaguer stars. Hold on to the excellent prospects the Reds have until the situation proves otherwise. That said there were some prospects who could have been dealt for a good rental pitcher without at all hurting the Reds high prospect status. I hope the Reds young players don’t lose their enthusiasm and continue to perform well until the end of the season. It’s been the most exciting season I’ve ever witnessed in my over seventy years as a Reds fan.