The Cincinnati Reds only got four innings from their starter, had a reliever exit the game with an injury, and walked eight batters in the game. Despite all of that they pulled out a 4-3 win and took the first two games of the series against the Detroit Tigers.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (76-71)
4 5 0
Detroit Tigers (66-79)
3 7 0
W: Duarte (2-0) L: Rodriguez (11-8) SV: Diaz (36)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

The Reds got their offense going in the top of the 2nd inning when Christian Encarnacion-Strand picked up a 1-out single. Harrison Bader followed up with a walk to put two men on. After a strikeout the Reds inning came down to a lefty-on-lefty match up and TJ Friedl – known lefty killer – came through with a 2-run triple to put Cincinnati up 2-0.

After walking a fine line in the first two innings, a leadoff walk came back to get Connor Phillips as Spencer Torkelson hit a 2-run homer to tie the game up in the bottom of the 3rd. The Reds didn’t let the game remain tied long. Harrison Bader led off the 4th with a walk, moved to second on a single by Noelvi Marte, and then over to third on a bunt single by TJ Friedl. Cincinnati would take the lead on a groundout. They added to the lead when Luke Maile attempted to steal second and the throw went to second where Maile got into a rundown long enough to allow Marte to score before he was tagged out to end the inning.

Detroit got one of those runs back after another walk from Phillips came back to bite him. Parker Meadows would steal second after his walk then come around to score on a 2-out double that cut Cincinnati’s lead to 4-3.

Phillips returned for the 5th, but a walk and a single began the inning and at 82 pitches with just 42 strikes, the Reds went to the bullpen and brought in Fernando Cruz. He would strike out the first two batters he faced, but walked Miguel Cabrera to load the bases. With a lefty due up, Cincinnati called on Sam Moll out of the bullpen and he helped himself out when he snagged a comebacker and tossed to first to strand all three runners.

When the bottom of the 6th came around, Tejay Antone took over for the Reds. He got a groundout to begin the inning and then struck out Akil Baddoo for the second out. Antone then walked Zach McKinstry and before another batter could come to the plate pitching coach Derek Johnson walked out to the mound. After a short conversation he called for the trainer and after some discussion, Antone left the game with what was later reported as “right elbow discomfort” by the Reds.

Lucas Sims entered the game for Antone and he walked the first batter he saw, putting the tying run on second base. He rebounded by striking out Spencer Torkelson to end the inning.

Ian Gibaut took over for Sims to start the bottom of the 7th inning. After a lineout he gave up back-to-back singles to Andy Ibanez and Miguel Cabrera – with Cabrera being pinch run for after he reached base. Gibaut came through after that, getting a strikeout and an easy fly out to center that ended the inning.

Daniel Duarte worked around a leadoff infield single in the 8th inning. Cincinnati turned things over to Alexis Diaz in the bottom of the 9th, still holding onto a 4-3 lead. After a strikeout to start the inning, Diaz walked Andy Ibanez and the Tigers called on Zack Short to pinch run. After Tyler Nevin struck out, Zack Short stole second base to put himself in scoring position with Parker Meadows at the plate and two outs. Meadows would hit a soft liner to first base two pitches later to end the game. With the 4-3 win, the Reds clinched a series win and tomorrow afternoon they’ll go for a sweep.

Key Moment of the Game

Sam Moll stranding the bases loaded in the 5th inning.

Notes worth noting

Tejay Antone after the game had this to day:

The Reds bullpen combined for five shutout innings spread out among seven relievers.

Cincinnati’s pitching staff walked a fine line as they walked eight batters in the game and gave up just three runs.

Detroit was 1-13 with runners in scoring position on the night.

TJ Friedl’s triple was the first by a lefty against Eduardo Rodriguez since the 2017 season.

The Reds win combined with a loss by Arizona earlier has Cincinnati tied for the final wild card spot with 15 games remaining.

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs Detroit Tigers

Thursday September 14th, 1:10pm ET

Derek Law (4-5, 3.83 ERA) vs Reese Olson (3-7, 4.50 ERA)

126 Responses

  1. Jeremiah

    That would be terrible for Antone. He seems like a good guy and when healthy he’s just so good. On a separate note, I wonder what effect all those arm injuries have on your normal life over time? Modern medicine is amazing, but a little concerning if you’d have some permanent damage, nerve damage etc. I hope the best for him!

    The Reds Bullpen is interesting as it’s not dominant like some other winning team’s bullpens in past or current years. Even Diaz I don’t consider dominant. They just have a lot of above average bullpen pitchers it seems and makes for a pretty good group overall.

  2. Melvin

    Only two back of the Cubs. They play the D-backs next. If we keep winning we gain good ground one way or another.

    • Ted Alfred

      Yep… and the Cubs last two series are on the road at Atlanta and at Milwaukee…hehe

      • LT

        Are you saying there’s a chance the Cubs will “cub” it up? 🙂

      • Rick

        I hope the Braves & Brewers play their A lineups, probably unlikely though.

    • Jim Walker

      One somebody is going to lose (at least) 2 games in Phoenix this weekend. If the Reds can win at least 2 against those results, they will pick a game on that team. As long as the Reds win 2 this weekend, I would be overjoyed if the Cubbies lost 2 or were even swept. The situation sets up really well for the Reds either way if they win 2 since they hold the 2 team tiebreaker on both the Snakes and Cubs.

  3. J

    I’m still confused about that injury. I watched the sequence a couple times, and it looks to me that Antone is getting ready to throw the next pitch as if nothing is wrong, seemingly out of the blue Johnson stops the action, they chat with him for a bit, and then he comes out without any argument. It’s as if he needed to be told he was hurt because he didn’t realize it, and then after they explained it to him he realized his arm hurt.

    • Harry Stoner

      Ounce of prevention worth a pound of cure…or however that saying goes.

      Who knows what transpired while Antone first took the mound or other previous communication?

      Hopefully we’ll get more clarification, but it likely won’t come from Bell.

      I’m sure he’ll get asked post game but we can expect some gobblygook.

      In any event, why risk it with Antone? TJ #3?

      It’s been great having him back but, if he needs to get shut down for the season and back for 2024 then do it.

      • J

        Not arguing that he should have been left in the game. I just don’t understand the sequence of events, because Antone didn’t seem to expect anyone to come visit him. He looked like he was getting ready to throw the next pitch and had no idea he was hurt. Maile also didn’t seem to be aware because he didn’t go out there until Johnson did. I’ve never seen anything like that.

      • Harry Stoner

        Reds website saying that Antone “signaled to the dugout”, whatever that means, which set in motion the mound visit, etc.

        Might be best not to try and divine too much from watching video and trying to interpret.

        The news is bad enough as it is.

      • J

        Um… all I’ve been saying is that I was confused by what I saw. Isn’t it okay for me to express my confusion?

      • RedlegScott

        Better safe than sorry is another way of putting it.

      • Harry Stoner

        Easy big fella.

        For someone willing to mix it up as much as you do, and for someone willing put his opinions out there plain and simple, you seem pretty touchy when anyone pushes back.

        Or even questions you.

        It’s a message board where folks debate, as you’ve said many times.

        You argue and debate and question and probe and sometimes some of those comments are worthy of a push back.

        The Antone situation is pretty easy to think through from an “Ockhams Razor” point of view.

        Try this:

        Antone felt some discomfort in his arm.

        He signaled the dugout.

        Heat of the moment.

        Antone pumped up.

        Maile missed it. Maybe even DJ missed it.

        Antone set up for his next pitch.

        Somebody notified DJ or Bell.

        DJ pulled the plug.

        I may be wrong about that, but it’s not that hard to think through a plausible situation without assuming the worst or finding the situation implausible.

        Carry on, man, with all you contribute, it’s great, pero tener una piel más gruesa no haría daño as my viejo padron used to tell me.

      • J

        Harry, I’m almost as confused by your response as I am by what I witnessed in the game. I didn’t imply (or believe) anyone did anything wrong, nor did I imply (or believe) there was some sort of conspiracy, nor did I imply (or believe) it’s impossible to imagine any reasonable explanation for what happened. I merely said that what I saw didn’t make any sense to me, and that I’ve never seen anything like it. There was nothing to question or push back against unless you believe I’m lying and I actually wasn’t confused because I’ve actually seen things like this before.

        The TV guys were also unsure what had happened, and said as much. I don’t think they were implying anything nefarious had happened or were suggesting there couldn’t possibly be a good explanation. They said they assumed Johnson “saw something” that made him think there was an injury, but had no idea what he had seen. Neither did I, and I had the luxury of watching the replay.

        I think you misunderstood what I was saying. It happens.

      • Harry Stoner

        Not surprised by that, J.

        If I’m not mistaken you weren’t at the game, and the TV guys were a pretty far distance from the field.

        As I mentioned, the Reds’s MLB site said “Antone signaled to the dugout.”

        I guess I’m going to take that at face value.

        Not too hard to think it through from there.

        You seemed puzzled enough by something which seemed pretty straightforward.

        You make your hay around here by questioning the motives and capacity of the Reds’ managing and coaching and decision making from the microscopic to the strategic.

        It’s your modus operandi of a high percentage of your posts.

        Keep bringing it. That’s what a message board is for.

        That doesn’t mean, though, that sometimes folks, or me, will have no idea, absolutely zero, about what you are talking about.

        And might choose to raise the issue.

        For good reason.

        If you’re super touchy about that….sorry, not sorry.

        I hope that clarifies things a bit.

        I know you like to argue a lot, and go to the mat over small issues.

        Bulldogging it.

        It’s your thing, and as the song goes, do what you want to do.

        I’ll leave it at that and sign off.

        If you feel the urge or need to debate on, have at it, I’m hitting the hay.

        Otherwise, see you at the next Reds’ game!

      • J

        Harry, you seem pretty upset by what I’ve said here, but I’m afraid that’s on you, not me. If I say it’s raining today and you read my comments as “I’m blaming David Bell for messing up the weather,” I’m afraid that’s not my fault. And citing my previous comments can’t somehow make it my fault. You’ve simply misinterpreted what I said.

        Meanwhile, I’ve looked at the replay additional times, and I STILL don’t see anything that looked like a signal. Antone goes through a bit of a routine adjusting his pants or something, toes the rubber, looks in for the sign, glances over at the runner on first, goes into the stretch, appears to be looking toward the plate, and suddenly Johnson is coming out to the mound.

        No matter what I’ve said in the past, or how many times I’ve argued with people on this site, this still strikes me as a very odd sequence of events, and I still don’t understand it no matter how many different plausible explanations might exist. When pitchers signal that they’re injured, usually you can see the signal or at least some sort of indication of distress, and usually they don’t get a sign from the catcher and go into the stretch and glance at first base and appear to be about one second away from throwing the next pitch. Normally I would expect a pitcher to be aware that he’s not going to throw a pitch if he’s just signaled to the bench that he’s injured. There wasn’t anything to be gained, I don’t think, by pretending he was about to throw a pitch if he knew he was about to exit the game with elbow problems.

      • Luke J

        Harry, buddy, what in the world? J simply said he didn’t see Antone signal to the dugout or any other indication of injury so he was confused. Not a big deal. I didn’t see him signal either. If that’s what’s being reported, fine, the cameras just possibly missed it. All J was saying was he didn’t see it and it was confusing. There is literally no reason for you to argue with him about it. It’s quite clear from your comments that you have an inherent bias about J that has clouded your reading of his comment. You have taken an innocuous statement that he didn’t see anything on camera to indicate Antone felt an injury or notified the dugout and made a mountain out of that molehill.

      • greenmtred

        I found that puzzling, too. Chris Welch wondered if something happened on his pick-off attempt, and also suggested that he’d made eye contact with DJ just before DJ came out, and judging from what I recall of DJ’s reaction in the dugout, that seems plausible, too.

      • JB

        If you read Johnson’s lips when he comes out, he emphatically says ,”Are you ok?” Then it goes from there. Obviously you don’t ask that question if Johnson doesn’t see something or Antone doesn’t ask them to come out.

      • MK

        I thought it was on the pick-off move. And, after that move he was turned straight at the dugout so eye contact could easily be made. My initial thought was he tore some scar tissue which can be extremely painful. This would go along with his postgame response that the pain was in the same area. I had to have scar tissue torn and was knocked out as the doctor said it would be too painful to do it without. Hopefully, that is the case, but we will find out soon. Bottom line he felt pain. Who cares how the dugout found out

    • Linda Moeller

      They said he had lost so much velocity.

  4. Tim

    I have great appreciation for this bullpen after the torture of previous seasons. They have been extremely vital to our success but more importantly, the games are fun to watch. We can be down 4 or 5 after struggling starting pitching but they have been able to stop the bleeding and give us a chance. Hats off. Now, let’s find bush the season with a streak like we had in June

    • J

      I’m thinking about perhaps relaunching the Ian Gibaut Fan Club.

      • greenmtred

        You hadn’t abandoned it, I hope?

      • J

        He gave up a run or two the day after I launched the Fan Club, and I immediately shut it down for everyone’s sake. It may have gone to his head.

      • greenmtred

        Hopefully he’s had a chance to consider his reaction and temper it accordingly.

      • Eye surrender

        I just like yelling gibaut in a French accent everytime he messes up.

      • MK

        Having a fan club sure didn’t help Wade Miley have a long Reds tenure. Possibly Ian heard about it and didn’t want one, so he gave up a couple runs to discourage you. Maybe leave him alone during the playoff race,

      • greenmtred

        So perhaps J is right to keep it sub rosa. I’ll mention it no more.

  5. Mario

    Sure hope TJ is ok. It has to be tough on him mentally after all the rehab he has been through.

    • Rick

      His velo was down atleast 3 mph on one 4 seamer that I remember seeing on MLB GameDay. His previous outing it was 95 or possibly 96 mph, going off my memory. I could be wrong as I was following along from a supermarket parking lot.

  6. RedsGettingBetter

    Something admirable of this Reds team is the fighting spirit. Despite virtually has no starting rotation from 2 weeks ago and many offense issues they still stay in the playoffs race. I tip the hat to them.
    The big question is who are going to start the game 3, the bullpen is taxed right now due to the short outings of Williamson & Phillips so I don’t think it will be a bullpen day…Could they call up Kennedy, Mariot or Spiers again?

    • greenmtred

      Derek Law is starting, apparently.

      • MK

        I didn’t get this. If Lively was capable of giving multiple innings and is familiar with a starter routine, why start a reliever?

  7. Rick

    1 for 13, thank you Tigers! And credit to our relievers.

    • TR

      And I must give some credit to the Bell/Johnson management team regarding their use of the bullpen keeping the Reds in the playoff race in September.

  8. Andrew Brewer

    We’ll take the win anyway we can get it. The American League doesn’t know our bull pen, and thus the pitchers have the edge… The Reds claw out another win and move to 5 over .500. Bell is doing a good job with the pitchers. We only had 5 hits on the days, which is worrisome. We are in the playoff push ! Every game has playoff implications. Go Reds, we love you !

  9. wolfcycle

    as a team we are walking too many people, do not expect that to be fixed this year, but, must improve next year.

    • Harry Stoner

      “as a team we are walking too many people, do not expect that to be fixed this year, but, must improve next year.”


      Cut-and-paste from the last X years of Reds’ pitching.

      Doesn’t seem to be much of a priority with coaching or management.

    • SultanofSwaff

      Agreed. It’s amazing the Reds have such a good record considering they allow the 4th most walks AND the 3rd most home runs.

      • greenmtred

        Good info, Sultan. I wonder if reducing the walks would result in an increase in home runs?

    • Doc

      Perhaps they could give up more hits, o more home runs instead of walks. After all, the options are not limited to walk or out.

      Eight walks last night but only one of them scored, and that was on a home run. Home runs haunt.

      • greenmtred

        That would be the ideal, certainly, but I think a lot of the balls are pitches that are not intended to be strikes but are, instead, meant to induce swinging strikes or weak contact.

  10. Colorado Red

    Agree with the comments above, but the Reds currently hold the tie breaker vs the D-backs. If the season ended today, they are IN.
    How many of us, before the season started, thought that would be the case.
    Talking Playoffs vs draft is really nice.

    • Rick

      We also didn’t know at that time that all of those talented rookies were getting called up either. But, it kind of evens out with all of the starting pitchers getting IL’d.
      I guess that Alien Glue infomercials really does work for pitchers:) Lol ?

  11. rednat

    isn’t this the second time Marte has stolen home this year? has to be a reds rookie record?

    • J

      He unfairly doesn’t get credited with a steal on that, because Maile was “caught stealing,” and you can’t get credit for a steal if the other guy who’s part of a double steal is out. That scoring rule shouldn’t apply to a situation like this, but it does.

      • rednat

        interesting. yeah i noticed he didn’t get credited in the box score

      • J

        It makes sense that on an ordinary double steal you can’t get credit for stealing a base if the other guy is thrown out, because obviously they can’t throw out both runners. But this wasn’t really a double steal. This was Maile trying to steal, and as the Tigers were busy tossing the ball all over the place and ignoring Marte, he made a separate decision to steal, and he made it safely. Whatever eventually happened to Maile on that play shouldn’t be relevant to whether Marte did or didn’t steal home, but the rules of baseball scoring apparently insist Marte didn’t steal the base as long as Maile is eventually caught.

      • RedBB

        Baseball is full or non-sensical rules that award or punish players unfairly statically. I’m fine with it…

      • Still a Red

        Ha, a dbl steal with Maile almost seems like an intentional “small game” move by Bell. You’ll notice Maile got a fairly good jump (probably not enough to make it successful), but stopped and got into the run down. They’ve scored a few runs this year with dbl steals.

      • J

        I don’t think Bell called a double steal. I think he called for Maile to run because India had a 3-2 count and he wanted to avoid a double play. India wasn’t supposed to swing and miss, but he did. Maile assumed he couldn’t make second so he (wisely) stopped and tried to give Marte a chance to break for home, which Marte (wisely) did. I think the only part of it that Bell actually called for was Maile leaving first base, and the rest was improvised.

      • MK

        Red BB how about the runner who goes and slides in safely only after being safe steps off the bag and is called out. It is not a stolen base and catcher is rewarded with a defensive caught stealing.

  12. Indy Red Man

    I don’t understand why neither Stephenson or Benson got at-bats, but we won! I’m afraid too much heat is coming down on the pen and the offense is going to have to pick it up.

  13. CI3J

    With 15 games to go, the Reds have won 76 games and are tied for the final playoff spot.

    At the beginning of the season, I predicted the Reds would win between 75 and 78 games. Needless to say, it’s highly, highly likely that the Reds are going to blow past that number within the next few days.

    The Youth Movement really turned this team around, and no matter what happens over these final 2 weeks, it’s been quite a ride, and finally we Reds fans can see some hope for the future.

    Keep on keeping on, Redlegs.

    • Jim t

      @CI3J, I feel the same way. No reason for ownership not to invest in this team. If providing fans a winner is the goal they have a lot of pieces in place and some resources to fill the few remaining holes.

  14. Jim t

    Looks like Derek Law is starting for the reds today. Really hope that was a misprint. With15 games and as tight as all the contenders are all the games are huge.

    • Amarillo

      We’re kind of stuck when we have an entire rotation on the Injured list. We could bring back Weaver, but that’s not a great option either.

      • greenmtred

        Whom would we be willing to trade for Weaver?

      • Amarillo


        Weaver was DFA’d by the Mariners 4 days ago, it would just be a waiver claim, or “considerations”

      • SultanofSwaff

        Weaver got picked up by the Yankees. Whatevs.

      • RedBB

        That and a rotation of young pitchers who all have no clue how to go deep in games (including Greene) and not decimate your BP (save Ashcraft maybe). That’s why Krall decision not to get a veteran starter was so bad…

    • greenmtred

      The problem is: if not Law, who?

  15. GreatRedLegsFan

    Looks like another BP day today, Bell has really managed to get the best of it.

    • Jim t

      Yep the bull pen has really stepped up.

    • RedBB

      BP day after pitching almost every single backend reliever in back to back days is not sounding good.

      By my calculations we have Law, Farmer and Moll who can go. Everyone else has gone back to back days already. That’s an AMAZINGLY thin BP….need another arm. Antone needs to go on the IL or optioned.

  16. Klugo

    This team is limping to the finish line, but theyll go down swinging. If we somehow make it into the playoffs, I’d tab this team the Miracle Redlegs.

  17. Tom W

    Here is what I saw on Antone. After the batter reached 1B, Antone threw over to 1B. Steer did not catch the ball. It was almost like Antoine’s throw over to 1B had fooled him. Maybe the throw acted like a sinker? It was low and Steer did not catch the throw. Steer immediately picked up the ball, looked in towards the dugout and wiggled the ball like they need a new ball for the game. Did Steer see something in Antone? I don’t know but after a few seconds, DJ went to the mound. The whole scenario looked awkward.

  18. RedBB

    Antone needs to go on the IL or get optioned. Even if he is OK no way is he pitching for several days and we desperately need an arm today. Hopefully Lively can be activated and be the long man today. If not then bring up Kennedy or Mariot.

    • Grand Salami

      He did. Went to IL and young arm is back.

  19. CFD3000

    I’m often late to the thread but with nowhere else to post this I’ll throw it out. I am really excited about the Reds near future. I am of course loving playoff chase baseball in September 2023. Unexpected and so much fun. But think about how much better this team could be, and soon! Healthy Greene, Lodolo, Ashcraft. Stronger Abbott. Improving Williamson, Phillips, Petty, Richardson and Lowder. And more experienced (and healthy) young stalwarts: EDLC, CES, Matt McLain, Wil Benson, Spencer Steere, and Noelvi Marte. With a solid list of major leaguers surrounding them (instead of the “we got Jack for that tyoes of recent years”) India, Stephenson, Friedl, Fraley, Maile and perhaps another prospect or three. That’s exciting. So while I’m rooting hard for an unexpected playoff slot this year, even if the Reds fall short in 2023 I’ll be buzzing for 2024 and beyond. Go Reds!

    • Jim t

      @CFD3000, great comment. I feel very much the same way. One thing I would like to add is a commitment from ownership to invest in a very good nucleus is necessary

      • SultanofSwaff

        For me, investment means extensions before splurging on free agents. Going to be an interesting offseason.

    • greenmtred

      I also feel the same way. But I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that ownership feels that it already has invested in the nucleus, that being the guys CFD3000 listed plus more MiLB talent waiting in the wings.

    • MBS

      Yes, the 24, 25 teams should be a lot of fun to watch. I hope they do grab a few key players in the FA market, or via trade that take us to the next level.

      I won’t be disappointed if we don’t make the playoffs this year, I was resigned to that thought at the trade deadline. I’m shocked that we are still in it with 15 games to go.

      So again I won’t be disappointed, but I will be super excited that these kids made it to the playoffs. Votto is also getting to have a fun final season, and a playoff would be a good way to go out.

    • Redsvol

      I totally agree – with 1 caveat. We can’t go into 2024 expecting everything to go right with the young starting pitching staff. It won’t. Also, we can’t go into 2024 expecting the same performance from this set of bullpen guys. They can’t.

      Krall and ownership need to bring in some veteran leaders / especially pitching and outfield. We need 2 starting pitchers, 2 veteran bullpen guys and 2 outfielder.

      We have a bunch of young guys with no track record of playing in 150 games. Bullpen pieces often flop the year after a good performance. Can you imagine where we would be this year if Alexis Diaz had blown his elbow out? It would be bad.

      Krall should be give. 50 million to spend. And give another 50 million to a construction company to improve the outfield dimensions of GABP. Get it done Phil and Bob! This is not a home run hitting team.

      Also, get out and go to a game! We need to break the 2 million attendance barrier. Need to average about 25,000 to ensure

  20. BuzzKutter

    Where will the offense come from today? Last night it was all Friedl and Marte. With Bader (2 runs scored on walks) and Maile not striking out and then not charging with his head down into 2nd base on his steal attempt.

    As much as I sometimes hate to see it, an appearance by the helmet and cape a few times today would be nice.

    • greenmtred

      Detroit’s a hard park–unfavorable habitat for the horns and cape. I’d settle for 7 or 8 doubles, a couple of triples and numerous walks and steals. Maybe I’m not being realistic…

  21. Doc4uk

    One optimistic note is the return of McClain before end of the year He was one of our best bats and when he went down it seemed that our offense went with him . EDLC seems lost and his lack of hitTing is starting to affect his fielding. I actually think Marte at SS until McClain returns is the better option with Steer at 3B and CES platooning with Votto at 1B and Senzel platooning with Benson in RF

    • Still a Red

      It sure is nice to have the option to confidently move people around like this. Hats off to management and players for going with such a strategy.

      I too am a little concerned by EDLC’s trend line. Hope he doesn’t become another Billy Hamilton…though Billy never did show much hitting capability. EDLC is young. After alot of attention in the beginning, hopefully he eats his humble pie and keeps working toward his apparent ceiling.

      Hopefully, CES continues his upward trend.

      • greenmtred

        He has cut down on the strikeouts, which has to be a hopeful sign, but his at-bats have stopped being must-see tv for me.

      • Chris

        Sadly, CES is becoming one of Bell’s platoon players. What a joke, sitting this kid again today.

    • JB

      Reds aren’t benching the number 1 prospect in baseball. EDLC will play.

  22. Roger Garrett

    Whats not to like about this years team.Lots of young guys doing young guy things and most of the time they are all good.Sure we go after Bell cause he is easy to go after but truth is he will get some votes for manager of the year.Fill some holes in the off season like a right handed power guy in the outfield at least one veteran starter and a couple of power arms in the pen along with better health for our starters and well lets see.Team is gaining some experience right now and would love to see them get some post season experience as well.GO REDS

    • greenmtred

      For the pen I’d like to see them add a couple of long men, whether by trade, free-agency or organizational depth.

      • Chris

        We have long men now. Bell doesn’t use them for that purpose. One inning a guy, and that’s that.

  23. Tom Mitsoff

    If Antone can’t pitch for at least several days, the Reds will have to move him onto some list or back to Louisville. With a bullpen day today and no off-days until Thursday, they need every usable arm. Might see Antone go to the 15-day IL and Legumina back up before the game.

    It broke my heart to see Antone have to leave last night’s game. None of us will ever know what it takes to go through all of the rehab of two Tommy Johns. What we do know is that the successful comeback rate after two TJs is very, very low. Antone has given it everything he has, and it’s a horrible reminder that life is not fair.

    • Jim Walker

      I agree 100% Tom. Seeing how he has redefined himself not once but twice, I cannot help but wonder what he might have been if someone along the way had empathized complete pitching over throwing sliders as hard as he could.

      And I am not putting this (just) on the Reds. It starts with youth coaches and parents then runs right on up the tree. I have read and heard no less than Dr. Kremchek lament this situation when speaking of the kids brought to him in their mid teens for elbow work.

      • Chris

        I agree. I think the biggest problem with pitchers and injuries today is all about maximum effort; not innings pitched/pitch counts. Pitchers were always taught to take a little off, but now it’s all about maximum velocity for an inning each game, multiple times a week.

  24. Mark Moore

    What a wild ride … again!! Happy to come away with another W.

    I’m thinking Antone gets shut down, probably for the rest of the season. Caution should be the approach as his future is still bright if he can work through this.

    Cannot fault HDTBell for the bullpen usage in this series. I certainly wouldn’t want to be facing a “bullpen day” today after the first two games. Line-up construction and PH choices still might be a little puzzling, but we did win, so no more on that.

    Onward we go … Sweep the Tiggers and keep control of our own 2023 destiny!!

    • Mark Moore

      And a rather interesting line-up today … Joey is the “low point” but perhaps he finds a little lightening in what is likely his last visit to the Motown Baseball Park.

  25. LDS

    Antone seemed pretty upbeat about the arm. Apparently it’s flared like this in rehab as well. Coming back at all was an accomplishment, particularly being as effective as he has been. But, for his future, I think I’d shut him down for the rest of the season and give that arm more healing time. Next year is soon enough and beats blowing out the arm for good.

    • Tom Mitsoff

      If it is true that it’s not another tear, then absolutely yes, I am with you on that.

    • Optimist

      Yes to this – sure, you never know when a playoff spot is in play, but he’s obviously a much closer “one injury from retirement”, so stop now and get ready for spring training.

      • Jim Walker

        I saw in Doug’s overnight Patreon notes that Tony Santillan has thrown 4 consecutive 1 inning shutout performances. His velocity has been in the 97MPH range and he has 6 Ks and only 1 BB over the 4 innings.

        It could be a huge and unexpected boost if he were to maintain and eventually get brought back to MLB. Recall that is has been outrighted and would require a double 40 man, then active roster move to bring back.

        However, if he is still pitching like this at the end of the MiLB season, I’d think the Reds would move him back onto the 40 man roster for the off season anyway since he will still be only 24 years old at the start of the 2024 season.

  26. Jim t

    Line up is out. EDLC is in playing SS batting 8th.

    • Beaufort Red

      EDLC doesn’t seemed as engaged. He still has all the exuberance, but his lackadaisical play is apparent. As I’ve been told remember he’s only 21. But with 21 comes a certain amount of immaturity. Maybe the dropping down in the lineup or actually being left off the starting lineup has “hurt” his feelings. I hope some of the older players can help him snap out of it. He can be a difference maker for sure.

      • Tom Mitsoff

        It was time for Bell to drop him from the top of the batting order. This is not developmental time, this is do your absolute best every day to make the playoffs time. In no way do I believe De La Cruz is not giving his best. However, I do believe many of his fundamentals are lacking. He has started to somewhat adjust his hitting approach to lay off low pitches out of the zone. I think he also lacks defensive fundamentals, such as getting his body in front of the ball at all costs. He also has a tough time taking a throw from the catcher and making a tag at second. This is a critique, but not criticism. He’s excelled in the minors due to his unGodly athletic gifts. But he’s not ready to be the star of this or any team at the moment. Pitchers in the big leagues don’t throw enough cookie fastballs.

  27. Roger Garrett

    Was going to comment on the batting order but you know what I will just leave it alone.

    • Grand Salami

      I’ll bite. Weird seeing Friedl at cleanup. Wouldn’t he and Benson switching make a ton of sense?

    • Optimist

      This answers the Antone questions – and looks as if Spiers and Lively are here for the duration. All of which is fine – and for all the Bell bashing, this will be a very interesting 2 weeks of roster and lineup management, not that there hasn’t been months of that already.

    • wkuchad

      If we’re winning or it’s tied or close, pitch Lively as long as he can go.

      If we’re down several runs, pitch Speirs until end of game. We have seven games in a row and need our bullpen to win most of those.

  28. BuzzKutter

    One good thing is India must be 100% or close to it.

    After the night game I would have thought he would have the day off today if not.

    • Jim Walker

      I’ve been wondering about India. Monday he went 1st to 3rd on a following double and looked to be in cruise mode versus pushing to force quick clean a play in the outfield like he typically does when on his game.

      And the ground ball coverage up the middle when the Reds have the SS shifted into the SS/3B hole has been really poor regardless of whether Marte or EDLC have been the SS.

  29. J

    He claims he doesn’t like moving people around in the order because it bothers them, but it really seems the only people this applies to anymore are Votto and Benson, and maybe Stephenson. Everyone else has no idea what he might do with them each day.

    There is clearly no scientific (or even quasi-scientific) method to any of this. He’s not guided by the consistency principle or by stats. It just seems to be hunches or randomness or something.

    Fortunately, I’ve been repeatedly assured that none of this matters, so I’m not the least bit concerned. I’m confident they’ll score plenty of runs, as they do more often than not. Just offering a completely meaningless observation about a completely meaningless detail.

    • BuzzKutter

      Jake leads off because he has a broken toe.

      Martini is hitting 2nd because he won that spot in a card game last night.

      Friedl cleaning up because he has actually been hitting with runners in scoring position.

      Benson hits behind Elly because when he comes thundering out of the box, legs pounding like pistons, gear flying off like leaves in the wind Elly will run faster.

      • Jim Walker

        Yeah I call the Benson startup the Fred Flintstone yabba dadda dooo special 😉

      • BuzzKutter

        Hahaha yabba Dabba doo special. That’s very fitting.

    • Chris

      In fairness to Bell, he was very consistent with the batting order when the team was hitting back in June and early July. The team is NOT hitting worth a darn now so he’s moving guys all over the place. Is your answer to keep doing the same thing even when it isn’t working?

      • J

        In fairness to me, a long time ago a lot of people noticed the team wasn’t hitting very well, and lots of people on this site (and others) were complaining that Bell was keeping Benson at the bottom and Elly at the top, refusing to move the slumping Votto out of the middle of the order, etc. We were saying this so often and so consistently, it made people angry because they were tired of hearing about it.

        A frequent response to our complaint was that Bell believed guys hit better if they had consistent spots in the lineup. I was fond of pointing out that Steer was the one guy who really got moved around a lot, and he had been one of the most reliable hitters on the team. I saw no validity to the “guys need consistency” theory based on actual performances. Said this many times. I was told to stop being so negative because the team was exceeding expectations even if it wasn’t scoring a ton of runs, and also because I’m not a major league manager and Bell is.

        So, no, I don’t want Bell to stick with a lineup that isn’t working. I’ve been saying this for literally months. I’m glad to see he’s now — in the last couple weeks of the season — willing to start experimenting.

        Now I wish he’d start paying more attention to stats, which would mean, for example, Friedl should be hitting near the top against lefties and Benson should be hitting near the top against righties, but maybe next year he’ll start paying attention to stats, move people around based on those stats, I’ll be happy with his lineups more often than not. I’m an optimist!

      • greenmtred

        But he may well be paying attention to very specific stats about Friedl and the Tigers pitcher–not head to head match-up, but this pitcher’s tendencies and how they might affect Friedl. One reason I don’t get exercised about line-up construction is the number of times this year that we’ve seen guys near the bottom of the order come to the plate with runners on base. The differences between the Reds’ hitters are not as pronounced as they are on some teams; we don’t really have a superstar who is a clear #3 hitter or a slugger who is head and shoulders above other options.

      • J


        We do see a lot of guys at the bottom come to the plate with runners on base, but that’s partly because Bell has guys hitting out of order. He’s had Elly leading off and hitting 3rd and 4th, and he (for the most part) hasn’t been getting on base for anyone to drive him in, so in that sense it’s great that the hottest hitters haven’t been hitting right behind Elly at the top. But there’s a better way to do this, and that’s to make sure your best/hottest hitters are at the top every day, the way virtually every manager has constructed lineups since the dawn of time. This maximizes their at-bats and minimizes the at-bats of the lesser/colder hitters, which, over time, will increase your run production. There will be individual games when you might think it’s great to have your best hitter hitting 8th or 9th because it all worked out perfectly, but that’s not the way to maximize runs over the course of a season. Ask any statistician or computer and you’ll see I’m right about this.

      • Still a Red

        mmm…yes it makes sense to put your best hitters up at the top of the order…or at least to us ‘common sensers.’ But there must be more than just statistics that managers look at, and I’m not sure about “virtually every manager has constructed lineups since the dawn of time.” that way. I see in the box scores lots of lineups with low averages and/or lower ops up at the top of the order. I mean Schwarber leads off often, no matter what team he plays on.

    • Chris

      J, I think you just like to complain and play the whoa is me card. Let’s be perfectly honest, Bell’s Reds could win every game and you would complain about Bell, because he won doing something different than you would. That’s just a FACT. Do I love today’s lineup? NOPE. That said, I don’t think lineup construction especially with a group of players that are not tearing it up is all that important. Last night, the game was literally won because Friedl batted deep in the lineup and was up when two guys were on in front of him. If he had been batting 2nd in the lineup, those runs don’t score. Again, much of the lineup construction is overrated unless you have Acuna, Trout, Ohtani, and other dominant players. But hey, let’s complain about something, well, just because. 🙂

      • J

        Chris, you have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. First, I don’t complain every day. There are days when I haven’t commented at all, and days when I’ve commented but not complained. Second, there are plenty of things Bell does that I don’t agree with that I never say a word about. Win or lose, I don’t expect Bell to be perfect or to do everything I would do. I’m quite reasonable about my expectations.
        Third, as I often point out, I have defended Bell from what I perceive to be unfair attacks on his decisions. I did it the other day when people were complaining that he didn’t have Elly bunting with TS and Votto on base. And I did it even though Bell’s decision didn’t work. I’ve defended him multiple times this season (often for his use of Newman, for example), and I say lots of stuff on this site that isn’t a complaint about anything. But some people seem incapable of noticing any of those facts because it doesn’t fit their narrative that all I ever do is complain about Bell no matter what he does and no matter what the outcome is.

        You could just say “you know J, you were right about this. He should have switched the lineup a long time ago, and he should pay more attention to stats.” I think you actually do know I’m right about those things, but instead of just agreeing, you have to find some way to say I’m still wrong, so it’s “lineups don’t matter and you just like to complain about stuff.”

        I do like to complain about Bell’s most obvious mistakes, and other people like to complain about me. Some people will even go out of their way to complain about me even when they know I’m right and/or it serves no purpose to complain about me. But somehow they also manage to convince themselves that they’re very nice and upbeat and respectful people, while I’m some sort of ogre for saying all these mean things about Bell that we all know he would never read in a million years.

        And FYI, the phrase is “woe is me.” I’m not a horse.

    • wkuchad

      “He claims he doesn’t like moving people around in the order because it bothers them”

      Who’s “He”? If you’re referring to Bell, when did he say/claim this? I seriously doubt Bell said this.

      • J

        I’ve actually never heard him say it, but I’ve been told many times by different people that this is one of his standard explanations for why he wasn’t moving people around. Maybe they’ve all been lying because they like to argue with me, but I assume they’re reporting Bell’s comments accurately.