Andrew Abbott only lasted 3.2 innings on the day, but exited with the Reds holding a 3-2 lead. Cincinnati’s bullpen kept the score right there the rest of the way as the Mets couldn’t come through with another run. The Reds 3-2 win in New York moved them to 78-72 on the year.

Final R H E
Cincinnati Reds (78-72)
3 9 0
New York Mets (68-80)
2 8 2
W: Duarte (3-0) L: Megill (8-8) SV: Law (2)
Statcast | Box Score | Game Thread

After the Reds went down in order in the top of the 1st, the Mets got to work in their half of the inning. Pete Alonso picked up a 2-out walk and then back-to-back singles brought him around the bases to put New York up 1-0.

The lead didn’t last long. TJ Friedl led off the top of the 2nd and he moved over to third base on a 2-out single by Christian Encarnacion-Strand. Cincinnati tied the game up when they once again tried a steal of second to entice a throw with a runner on third, but catcher Francisco Alvarez came up firing to third base instead of second. He threw the ball into the outfield, though, and Friedl trotted in to make it 1-1.

Both teams would threaten in the 3rd, but Cincinnati stranded two in the top half and New York stranded the bases loaded in the bottom half as the game remained tied up. The Reds grabbed the lead after Joey Votto walked in the 4th and scored when Christian Encarnacion-Strand ran into a 95 MPH fastball and sent it into the seats in center.

Andrew Abbott returned for the 4th inning and struck out DJ Stewart to begin the inning, but gave up a 1-out double to Tim Locastro. After getting Brandon Nimmo to fly out, Abbott got squeezed on what looked like strike three to Francisco Alvarez on the 4th pitch of the at-bat. The next pitch was slugged into left field for an RBI double to cut the Reds lead to 3-2. It was the final batter for Abbott as the call went to the bullpen for Daniel Duarte. He came in to face Pete Alonso and struck him out to end the inning.

Cincinnati got three singles in the top of the 5th inning to load the bases with one out but they couldn’t cash in. Tyler Stephenson hit a perfect grounder to Francisco Lindor at shortstop and the Mets turned it into an inning-ending double play.

After Daniel Duarte threw a shutout 5th, he gave way to Sam Moll in the 6th. He threw a perfect inning. Fernando Cruz did the same thing in the 7th. The Reds were able to load the bases in the top of the 8th inning, but they didn’t cash in. Cruz returned to the mound and threw another perfect inning.

Still holding onto a 3-2 lead, Cincinnati sent Derek Law out to the mound for the bottom of the 9th. He’s get a pop up to start the inning. The Mets called on Daniel Vogelbach to pinch hit for Tim Locastro and Vogelbach came through with a single. He was then pinch-run for. Brandon Nimmo followed up with a fly out to center. Francisco Alvarez came through with a 2-out single to put runners on first and second for Pete Alonso. The two battled for seven pitches, but Law won on the final pitch as he induced a grounder that Nick Senzel fielded and fired to second base for a force out to end the game. The victory guarantees the Reds a series win and keeps them in the 3rd wild card spot.

Key Moment of the Game

Derek Law getting Pete Alonso to ground out to end the game with the tying and winning runs on base.

Notes worth noting

Four of the starting position players did not finish the game, being subbed out for a pinch runner or pinch hitter at some point in the contest.

TJ Friedl picked up two hits as he continues to kill it in September. He’s hitting .326/.444/.698 on the month.

Derek Law started a game on Thursday and picked up a save on Saturday. That’s just good old fashioned fun.

In his last 21 games, Fernando Cruz has a 2.53 ERA with a WHIP of 0.89, just seven walks, and he’s struck out 35 batters in 21.1 innings.

Daniel Duarte has a 2.57 ERA since the beginning of August (14.0 innings).

Up Next for the Cincinnati Reds

Cincinnati Reds vs New York Mets

Sunday September 17th, 1:40pm ET

Brandon Williamson (4-4, 4.47 ERA) vs Jose Quintana (2-5, 3.05 ERA)

102 Responses

  1. RedlegScott

    The bullpen is smokin’. Nice jack, CES.

  2. AllTheHype

    Great win. Please no Bader or Renfroe against Quintana tomorrow.

    • Jason Franklin

      Man.. you know you just cursed the team. Probably will see Bader, Renfroe, Martini, whoever else.

  3. Kevin H

    Well while I didn’t like the lineup, they got job done. Bullpen came in and Law shut the door.

    Bell and his staff like it or not keep pushing the buttons. They won again!!!

    • J

      Kevin, I’m afraid this is where we disagree. When the Reds win, it doesn’t necessarily mean Bell pushed a bunch of correct buttons. If there’s a 30% chance of X working and a 20% chance of Y working, and Bell picks option Y, that option is going to work 20% of the time, but it doesn’t mean he pushed the right button. It means he pushed a button that happened to work this time. Bad decisions work sometimes. Kids run into the street without getting hit by cars all the time, but when I see a kid do that, I don’t say the kid pushed the right button. I say the kid made a bad decision that happened to work out fine.

      I mean, if we want to give Bell credit because his relievers pitched really well today and he didn’t allow any of them to give the game away before getting them out, okay, fine, I can’t quibble with most of his bullpen decisions today. But I’d like to think our expectations should be a bit higher than bringing in relief pitchers who pitch well. And I really don’t think they’d have needed to be perfect if he’d pushed some better buttons with the lineup and the offense.

      • RedlegScott

        J, have you ever watched the SNL skit called “Debbie Downer?”

      • ChrisInVenice

        I’m beginning to think you are a plant to drum up engagement. No offense, Doug.

      • Kevin H

        J, I agree with what you are saying. Reds scored enough to win, and with how the starting rotation has been as far as injuries, and coming back from covid the bullpen carried them again. That was kinda my thinking with my comment.

        This is where I say players play and has very little to do with the manager. As I mentioned to another member, Bell frustrates me as well, however I am not as vocal as some. As I do believe the players perform etc etc.. This consistent juggling of the lineup however makes no sense and your right a better lineup and they may score more than 3 runs.

        As much as I do like this team and I don’t think Bell is as bad as some. I am starting to wonder if the three year extension was a bit premature. Yes he has done wonders as we have all seen. Yet, you look at the Braves lineup and I would suspect they don’t juggle like Bell does.

      • Tom Reeves

        J, you’re coming across at the type of guy who we could give $100 bill and you’d be mad it wasn’t crisp. I hope you’re not like that but it’s coming across that way.

        Man, enjoy the ride. It’s a beautiful view watching first and second year players figure out how to win.

      • J

        Tom, I’m the kind of guy who sounds like every football coach I’ve ever heard, because I don’t just say “oh, my team won so I’m just going to tell everyone they did an amazing job and not be upset about anything or ask that anyone improve anything. I’m just gonna enjoy the win all week and say hooray for my team, we’re wonderful.”

      • J

        Kevin, the players can only play if Bell puts them in the lineup. We can’t blame Steer for his lack of production last night — that was 100% on Bell.

        Also, the players have certain strengths and weaknesses, which are well documented by now, and it’s up to the manger to try to maximize the impact of their strengths and minimize the impact of their weaknesses. They can’t decide where to hit in the order or whether they ought to sacrifice bunt or when to hit and run. Bell has to make those choices. (Or at least he should be.)

        Ironically, I don’t have a problem with Bell shifting the lineup every day. That could be a way to maximize production. My problem is there’s no logic to his shifts. Just as one example: the fact that he keeps insisting on having Friedl hit at the bottom against lefties, but against righties he’ll have Freidl leading off or hitting second (and now hitting cleanup?) despite lots of evidence saying Friedl hits lefties as well, if not better, than righties. Bell is just shifting for the sake of shifting.

      • Still a Red

        J, I agree in principle with your statistical analogy…but I can’t agree that Bell is not working from some kind of logic. You just may not know what it is. Is he picking his batting order at random? Is he taking pitchers in and out at random? Is it all based on hunches? I doubt it. You don’t know what statistics he’s got to work with or his strategy for using them. Just like we don’t know what statistic you are working from or how you are using them. All you really know is that his decisions don’t agree with yours. At the end of the day, if the Reds get into the playoffs, he probably made more decisions (good and bad) that panned out than not. Of course, none of this takes into account all the good/bad decisions the other teams are making that the Reds benefit from or not.

      • J


        As I’ve said many times, Bell makes lots of decisions that make perfect sense to me. He also makes lots of decisions that are different than the ones I would have made, but I’m not really sure which is better, and I don’t worry about the fact that he’s made a different decision. I also don’t get upset at him when those decisions don’t pan out. I usually complain about a handful of decisions that make absolutely no sense, and I usually complain about them before the outcome is known. And everyone is free to say “you’re wrong, and here’s why Bell is right.” But almost nobody ever does. And I think the reason almost nobody ever does that it is that nobody can come up with any plausible explanation other than “Bell knows things we don’t” or “Bell has a method.”

        I’ll grant that Bell has information we’re not privy to, but at this point it’s hard to believe he’s got access to any meaningful statistics that aren’t publicly available. Another reason I don’t buy this argument is that we can all pretty well predict certain things he’s going to do based on information that clearly isn’t related to any stats, such as handedness, veteran status, Bell’s own past tendencies. etc.

        For example, as I pointed out a few times last year, Pham hit third in every game (I believe it was literally every game) he started for the Reds. The opposing pitcher didn’t matter, the other guys in the lineup didn’t matter, and Pham’s recent performance didn’t matter. If he was in the starting lineup, Pham hit third, period. Now, what are the odds that Bell had stats that just happened to say “Pham is the ideal #3 hitter in today’s game,” and those stats never said anything else no matter what the circumstances were? I don’t buy that for a second.

        So then we have to start looking for other reasons. Bell has claimed (or so I’ve been told) he thinks hitters respond better when they consistently hit in the same place. I don’t know if there’s any evidence backing that up, but the problem with assuming this was Bell’s rationale is that he didn’t keep other guys in the same place every day. Other guys bounced all over the place, depending on handedness, recent performance, or whatever it was that went into Bell’s thinking. And did Bell have any stats saying Pham is a great #3 hitter? No! Pham had rarely hit #3 in his career. And he started out in a terrible slump for the Reds — all hitting third. And as soon as he was traded, he was primarily used as a leadoff hitter because there was no evidence that he was better hitting third. And this year he’s bounced all over the lineup. (He’s hit #3 more than any other spot in particular, but he’s had many more at-bats at other spots than #3. Totally different than his time with the Reds.)

        Now, what am I supposed to make of all this? Am I really supposed to believe Bell had stats last year saying Pham would be the ideal #3 hitter every single day that he started for the Reds, and that he *never* made sense, even one day, hitting anywhere else in the Reds lineup? But other managers just have such different teams that Pham usually makes sense hitting somewhere else in their lineups? And in their lineups, it’s okay to move Pham all over the place, whereas with the Reds he needed consistency?

        I just don’t buy this. What I believe is that Bell either had a theory about Pham being best at #3 (and who knows where this theory came from — because it wasn’t Pham’s past performance), or Pham said he wanted to hit third and Bell didn’t want to argue about it. The only other explanation I can imagine would be that Bell was being ordered from above to hit Pham third every day, which I think would be very weird, but I would also have to question why Bell would put up with that, since he’s the one who takes the blame when the team can’t score runs.

        Whatever the case, I use the Pham situation to illustrate the bigger point, which is that we shouldn’t assume Bell is making decisions based on secret stats or sound logic. There aren’t stats to back it up, and NO other manager seems to view Pham as a guy who needs to hit third every day no matter what the circumstances are. Most managers bounce him around the lineup, and more often than not they don’t use him to hit third, and it’s been that way his whole career other than the hundred or so games he played for Bell.

        Saying it isn’t based on sound logic doesn’t mean there can’t possibly be a an argument made to support it. It’s possible to come up with an argument for Pham hitting anywhere in the lineup, bouncing around every day, remaining in the same place every day, or not playing at all. But just because it’s possible to come up with an argument doesn’t mean all of these decisions would be equally logical.

    • Melvin

      Glad we won. I think we should shoot for more than three runs though. 😉 I’m sure you do too.

      • J

        No. Anyone who thinks the Reds should try to score more than two earned runs is just a Debbie Downer and a plant, because everyone knows the only approprIate thing to do is to be happy and satisfied if the Reds happened to win the most recent game.

        I’m starting to think a lot of Reds fans have been so beaten down over the last several years that they have no idea what it’s like to be fans of a good and well-managed baseball team, so that any kind of winning season is now considered the best anyone can (or should) possibly hope for. It’s sad to see how some of these folks are willing to tolerate blatantly bad decisions night after night as long as the Reds stay slightly above .500 and remain competitive for a wildcard spot. The expectations are so so so low, it honestly is sort of sad. I hope the Reds players have higher expectations of themselves than some of these low-expectations fans do.

      • Still a Red

        J, let us know what you would have done differently last night, from line-up to pitching selections, to what ever hit and run/steal other decisions that were made…based on your statistical analysis of what would succeed, and how that would have changed the win probability batter-by-batter, inning-by-inning.
        I understand, you are frustrated that people give Bell credit when you think he does not deserve it. You say he makes some good decisions (ones you agree with) but overall you think he is a terrible manager. I think some who credit Bell’s handling of the team is in response to those who discredit him.

      • J


        It’s not my job to come up with the Reds lineup. I would have to spend a lot of time looking over the stats, talking to players and coaches, etc. Part of what I’m saying is that I don’t think Bell actually does much of that, because he virtually always seems to end up with, for example, Friedl hitting low in the order against lefties and high in the order against righties. I don’t think players, coaches, or stats are telling him to do that. And whether Benson has been slumping badly for the past month or leading the team in OPS for the past month, and no matter who’s pitching and who else is in the lineup, Benson is *never* hitting in the top half of the order. Friedl can be moved up and down based on the opposing pitcher (and not based on his actual stats — just based on handedness alone), but Benson has to remain at the bottom no matter what? How can Bell possibly be using anything other than his “gut” to make that decision? There’s no evidence that Benson couldn’t have hit well somewhere in the top 5 against righties when he was literally leading the team in OPS against righties, but Bell never even experimented with it — even when the team was struggling to score.

        It’s not easy to come up with a lineup, so I’m not going to try. But it’s easy to avoid making blatant mistakes, and Bell doesn’t do that.

  4. David

    On topic but off topic but on topic (being pedantic, am I?)

    The Marlins have beat the Braves two games in a row, and could win tomorrow.
    The Braves.

    The Marlins may be the “team of destiny”, scooting down the stretch to the playoffs for a wild card seed. They are presently 77-72. The Marlins finish the year against the Pirates. They have two series (home and away) against the Mets, and a three game series next weekend against the Brewers.
    The Giants look like they are folding.

    Graham Ashcraft to have season-ending toe surgery tomorrow, so he’s out of the picture. Abbott is arm weary.
    Greene and Williamson and who else?

  5. Pharmer85

    Reds seem to be living a charmed life. Let’s hope it pays off at the end. It’s been a wild ride so far.

  6. Moon

    Giants have dropped a double header today. Miami beats Atlanta. Cubs and Snakes tired in the 9th. WC race very interesting. All Reds can do is keep winning.

  7. Mark A Verticchio

    Rooting hard but let’s be honest how can they keep this up with this starting staff. Actually I mean what starting staff.

    • greenmtred

      Yes. It’s hard to imagine that they can get much further with what passes for their starting pitching now. But they aren’t giving up and the experience they’ve had already should improve their chances in the future.

  8. CFD3000

    A tiny bit of offense at key moments and this could have been a blowout. Stephenson GIDP with bases loaded one out, Benson K with bases loaded 2 outs. But the bullpen made it work. Add in CES and EDLC (four hard hit balls) and it was a good night.

    On an unrelated note, ball and strike calls looked especially awful to me tonight – just ask Jonathan India. Interesting conversation between Sadak and Welsh about (higher) AAA averages and the use of automated umpiring. No wonder major leaguers struggle when so many bad ball / strike calls affect every at bat. I’m predicting now that offense will increase dramatically when robo umps come to MLB.

    • Grand Salami

      I was on Gameday and the radio and there were some doozies of missed calls low in the zone. It was worse than normal.

    • old-school

      Only half-kidding. How ‘bout new MLB commissioner as an upgrade to Manfred?

    • Redsvol

      love Chad Dotson and the folks on the Riverfront. I listen every week. Chad and Nate are true Reds fans. If you’re not listening to the Riverfront and joining them on Patreon to support them and RLN then – “what are you waiting for?”.

  9. Grand Salami

    Diamondbacks tie it up in bottom 10. Corbin Carroll does the job immediately. Why are Cubs burning Stroman as reliever here?

    • Grand Salami

      DBacks and Cubs going to 11 is best news for us!

    • TR

      Who knows? Probably because it’s the Cubs.

  10. JB WV

    Gutty, determined effort all around. Terrific defense. Bullpen is nails once again and a big jack from CES. These guys want it.

    • TR

      And also, apparently, they like playing for David Bell.

      • TR

        Managing a ML baseball team, as far as I know, is an art, like most things in life. I know of no definite subjects one must be certified in to be a ML manager.

  11. MK

    Nice to see that Duarte is becoming a pitcher they can count on rather than just keeping their fingers crossed. He is one of those junk pile signings that a lot of people here complain about. Three organizations, not counting time in the Mexican League, released by two organizations including once by the Reds. Great story of sticking with it. Similar tenacity as Fernando Cruz.

    • BuzzKutter

      Ha, I don’t know who isn’t complained about. Maybe Steer, Friedl, Jake, and Andrew. Oh and Benson.

      When you look at the Starting pitching and hitting stats how are these guys doing it? Pretty amazing really.

  12. Indy Red Man

    Imo it’s no mistake we’re better on the road. The ball Steer caught is probably gone or atleast off the wall in Gabp and the ball Benson ran down is probably in the first row as well. They should atleast put up a wall in RF at Gabp and give us a chance to hit more triples then our opponents and gain an advantage.

    Another lefty tomorrow in Quintana. It’s time for Bell to quit pulling names out of a hat and stick with a lineup. DH Renfroe and Freidl, Bader, and Senzel left to right. Tonight you have Fraley leading off and can’t run and a 2 hitters that Votto might beat in a sprint then the world smallest cleanup hitter in Freidl. Craziness

  13. BuzzKutter

    Nice win! I was most impressed with the defense.

    Steer comes in and makes a great catch. Martini got back on a couple balls.

    Benson ran one down. India went out and made a catch.

    The infield played perfect. I know he is hated but Bader in Center is just smooth.

  14. Indy Red Man

    5-5 Cubs/Dbacks going to the 12th. Cubs have 6 next week with Colorado & Pittsburgh. You would think they right their ship there so I’m pulling for the Cubs.
    If somehow they don’t get in with Bellinger, Swanson, Stroman, Candelario, and their homegrown guys then that’s ridiculous

    • Indy Red Man

      Dbacks in 13. Wow

      Really weird finish. Dbacks down 6-5 and down to final strike w/men on 1st/3rd. Hitter lines one off the pitchers back or rear on his follow through and the ball flies up in the air towards Swanson who just lets it bounce at his feet. Why not dive for it? Next guy hits an 0-2 for the game winning walkoff

      Cubs 78-71
      Reds 78-72
      Dbacks 78-72
      Miami 77-72

      4 teams 2 spots

      • Jim Walker

        Reds hold tiebreaker on both Cubs and Snakes and thus would also take a 3 way tie between those 3 teams be that for the 2nd or 3rd spot.

        Cubs and Miami both have a game in hand to the Reds and Snakes. Difference is Cubs have one fewer loss than Reds and Snakes while Miami has the same number of losses as Reds and Snakes.

      • VaRedsFan

        Swanson should have absolutely dove for that ball.
        He thought he could field and throw the guy out….i disagree….he had to dive

    • Jim Walker

      I am also pulling for the Cubs on Sunday. At this juncture with the tiebreaker to the Reds favor vs. both Snakes and Cubs, it is better to be assured no worse than a tie with the Snakes than maybe half a game up on the Cubs.

  15. Jeremiah

    Cubs lose! Wow bigtime game there, Dbacks have won 5 of 6 against the Cubbies to bring them back towards the pack a bit. Cubs maybe not as good as I thought they were. Just a crazy wild card race kind of exciting you have 4 teams going for 2 spots right now.

    Reds need Phillips or Spiers to somehow become Major league quality starters in quick time!

    One scheduling benefit is 3 off days in the next week and a half or some mag be able to kind of keep using the bullpen at a high rate with those rest days.

    • Jim Walker

      The Cubs need to win 1 more game than both the Reds or DBacks the rest of the way finish ahead of them. The same number of wins the rest of the way as the Reds or Dbacks for the Cubs would result in a tie which the Cubs would lose on the tiebreaker in either a 2 or 3 way tie among those 3 teams.

  16. Rick

    Smokin mirrors winning with our starting pitching. Greene, Williamson. And Abbott on pure fumes giving it his absolute all. Gotts think about using a 14 man pitching staff and with Greene as our #1, Williamson #2, pitch Abbott/Lively combined as our? #3, pitch ea. one 3 innings each. Phillips #4. No 5th starter. That’ll leave 9 reliever to eat remaining innings using only 4 starting slots consisting of 5 guys.

    • JB WV

      Actually think that Greene has plenty in the tank after all the time he missed. Abbot gutting it out for sure, we’ll see about Williamson today.

      • greenmtred

        Spahn, Sain and three days of rain?

      • Rick

        Hunter has a full tank. Williamson is ok, Abbott is really taxed. Lively useful in limited use. We have no choice but to use the rushed up Phillips. Richardson’s future will be as a reliever.

  17. Amarillo

    34 One-Run wins and 10-5 in extras with 16 players making their Major League debuts and 5 starting pitchers on the injured list, and yet by Win Probability added we have the best bullpen in baseball. I’m not old enough to remember Sparky, but this has to be the best managed season in my lifetime. Really looking forward to these last 12 games.

    • Eddiek957

      I’m a firm believer that good teams win close games

  18. Reddawg2012

    So many missed opportunities, but once again the Reds hold on thanks to the bullpen. As a fan, how can you not be proud of this team?

    I still don’t understand what DB is doing with the lineup. I think David has done a fantastic job of managing the pitching staff this season, particularly the bullpen. It’s also clear that the clubhouse culture is top notch, and he should get credit for that. For the most part, this team has overachieved, and the manager is part of that. His extension was probably warranted.

    But it is so confusing to me that Noelvi Marte is not starting every single game, considering how well he has hit in September. Nick Martini hitting second makes no sense. Why is he starting at all? He’s a 33-year-old, career minor leaguer. Pulling CES, one of your hottest hitters, after he hit a go ahead two run bomb? It’s bonkers man.

    I don’t care about L/R splits when it comes to these guys. They are scorching hot at the plate and literally the future of the franchise. They seem to be getting comfortable and finding themselves. They need to play every day! David Bell of course has way more info on these guys and knows more about the game of baseball than I ever will. But this stuff just doesn’t make sense. It’s like he’s trying to win with one arm tied behind his back. Play your best players!

    • Indy Red Man

      I watched the game in the sports book with a million games going, but I’m guessing he pulled CES so he couldn’t hurt the team at 3B. Why he randomly put him there, who knows? Bell does some strange things, but they often work out. His management of the pen will never silence the critics, but their numbers speak for themselves.

      Today’s lineup will be interesting. Votto is 13 for 24 lifetime off Quintana. Senzel always plays lefties so maybe Marte back at SS? CES probably sits, but who knows?
      Bader and Renfroe also have good #s vs Quintana. Sitting Elly really weakens the defense imo, but he’s obviously struggled vs lefties. It’s going to be interesting

      • Jim Walker

        Indy>> I believe Bell wanted to get Senzel (who pinch hit for Martini in the 8th) at 3B because he sees Senzel as his best defender at 3B. But the way he went about it suggests to me his secondary motive was to also get Votto an additional PA (in the 9th) at the expense of removing CES from the game instead of moving CES from 3B to 1B when Senzel entered and inserting Steer (who went to LF with Benson moving to RF at the same time Senzel went to 3B) into Votto’s lineup slot (instead of CES’s slot) .

        Does the above paragraph make one iota of sense to anyone who did not watch or listen to the game? 😉 Well that’s about how much sense it made in real time too.

  19. Ted Alfred

    Hahahahahaha….good one!!!!!

    I really needed a good laugh today and that had me howling.

    • greenmtred

      Yes. Winning 5 out of 6 at crunch time should make all of us happy.

      • Jim Walker

        Moderately relieved here but not happy until the symbol for “clinched playoff spot” appears next to the Reds name in the standings table.

      • J

        It seems like some of us have higher aspirations than beating the horribly low pre-season expectations, winning slightly more than 50% of the games, almost making the playoffs, and looking forward to next season. And this really rubs some people the wrong way because we’re just supposed to be happy with every win no matter how it happened. Bell could have stuck Diaz at third base and if the Reds had somehow won the game with Diaz at third, some of us would be asking why he had a pitcher playing third base and others would be saying “just enjoy the win.”

      • Still a Red

        Given a manager that would make all the same decisions you would make, what would this team’s record be, given the talent and injuries they would have to deal with?

      • J


        I don’t know, but I think a few games better than the current record.

  20. Jim t

    Would love to finish 8-4 in last 12 games. That gives means we finish 86-76. My guess is that gets us a wild card spot.

    This will be extremely tough to accomplish with our starting rotation in its present configuration. Honestly with our rotation over the year ravaged with injuries and a plug and pitch approach I have no idea how we are where we are with 12 games to go. Factor in injuries and the inexperience of our position players and ownership giving Bell and staff an extension was a no brainer. They have earned it.

    • Jim Walker

      If the Reds just win everything else will take care of itself. A team to be wary of right now is the Marlins who still have a game in hand to the Reds and are even with the Reds in the loss column. The Fish are going to have tiebreaker on the Reds; so, the Reds have to win a game more than them the rest of the way to best them.

      And don’t count the Giants out quite yet either; but, they’ve dug quite a hole for themselves with 3 straight losses to the Rockies and 6 or 7 remaining with the Dodgers. However, the LAD appear to have nailed down the 2nd and final bye in round 1 of the playoffs and may not be fully motivated versus the Giants.

    • RedBB

      I said we needed to go 11-6 previously. Since then we’ve gone 4-1. So I think 7-5 is a good chance for the WC. Lotta teams in the WC hunt are playing each other so we know 1 team will lose in each of those. I still fear out Rotation is gonna let us down though. Hope I’m wrong

  21. Hotto4Votto

    The bullpen has done a fantastic job this season. Probably the story of the season (though the great rookie performances certainly grab more headlines) and the top reason the Reds are in the position they are in. Even guys that are lower in the depth chart of the relief corps have stepped up and pitched well. Great to see, a credit to NK for putting together such a tough minded bullpen, and DJ for establishing the next guy up mentality.

  22. LDS

    Observations from last night’s game:
    1) Yes, it’s good to win and yes, I’d like to see the Reds overtake Chicago. Hopefully, today.
    2) Bell continues to make inexplicable decisions based on handedness and is outmanaged by the opposing manager. Example, the Mets bring in a LH pitcher. Bell PH’s Renfroe for Fraley. Granted Fraley is only batting .147 against LH but Renfroe is at 0 as a PH’er. Senzel for Martini made sense. Pulling CES for Steer and letting Votto’s .196 average bat again did not.
    3) This game was won by the bullpen despite Law making it interesting in the 9th.

    Bottom line, Bell got lucky period. His judgement is flawed and he is routinely maneuvered into clearling his bench early, sometimes in a close game, often when trailing and left with a diminished offense. Notice the Reds were hitless after Bell displayed his management skills, i.e., after Raley entered the game. The Reds may make the playoffs, but they’ll never reach their potential with Bell at the helm.

  23. Brian Rutherford

    LOL. This is a daily delight. Go Reds and Go RLN. You never disappoint.

    • Indy Red Man

      He’s Randy Quaid in Major League. It’s too bad RQ hopped on the crazy train because he was a hilarious comedic actor.

  24. Indy Red Man

    Baseball Reference has the Reds at 55% to make the playoffs and 1.8% to win the WS…lol. I’m cautiously optimistic, but Arizona and Miami have already overcame a bunch of obstacles schedule wise lately.
    Arizona is 5-1 vs the Cubs & Miami won a series vs LA, Philly, and now Atlanta. The Reds could easily be 2-3 up on those 2 but they’ve stepped up too. We also can’t expect the Cubs to do worse then 4-2 with the Rockies & Pirates at home.

    The offense has to pick it up. Stephenson ahead 2-0 with bases loaded 1 out and hits a weak 6-4-3? What happened to his oppo approach? If he hit a hard 4-6-3 then I could understand. We just have to be bottom tier in sac flies. They’re extremely extremely rare

    • Jim Walker

      Agreed. The Marlins are the ones that amaze me leave me wary at this point.

      I do see growth in the Reds evidenced in the last 5 games though. All year they have tended to play at the level of their competition and have the chips fall where they might, especially at the end of games. However, in 4 of the last 5 games, they have been able to elevate at least just enough to get the W in closely contended games.

    • ChrisInVenice

      That at bat by Stephenson drove me nuts.

  25. Jim Walker

    I agree with your final sentence. They have done an outstanding job of crisis management over the last month after nearly going down by the nose in the first half of August. However, that doesn’t erase the constraints the lock step platoon system imposes on the high ceiling team coming to age before our eyes or excuse many of the poor execution of fundamentals that we see recurring all too often.

    • Jim Walker

      This was intended as a reply to LDS above. This reply interface and I can’t seem to stay on the same page the last couple of days!

  26. Mark Moore

    Yep. Crisis management. But we’re in the thick of things, especially with the Stupid Cubs Cubbing (Madrigal went down in the 13th). Pass them and win, baby, win and it all works out just fine. No Bernies in the opening round and we get our chance to advance.

    • Jim Walker

      Recall the Cards got hot and made the playoffs from nearly being left for dead in early September of 2021 then fired their manager because the org thought he wasn’t the guy looking forward. ;–)

    • Indy Red Man

      That’s right…lol. I’d forgot we could move up to #5. That’s about the only positive because if they mopped up on Arizona then it would be down to the Reds & Miami

      • Jim Walker

        After the presumed 6 cupcake games vs Rockies (3) and Pirates (3) at Wrigley next week the Cubs finish on the road vs Braves (3) and Brewers (3). However with the 1st round seeds for divisional winners all but settled even now, I wonder just how motivated the Bravos and Brewers will be.

        In particular, the Brewers are probably going to be more interested in setting their 1st round rotation than trying to influence who they get as an opponent in that round.

  27. RedBB

    Ashcraft done for the year and having toe surgery. Gotta wonder if the Reds had chosen to extend him instead of Greene would he still be pitching?

    Also reds are 5-1 since India and Votto came back. That’s not a coincidence IMO. Now need to get McClain since we are going to have to outhit everyone from here on out with this anemic Rotation.

    • RedBB

      I’m guessing we see McLain back Friday after a 3 day rehab starting tomorrow

  28. AllTheHype

    Lineup posted, no India, dropped Votto to 7th.

    Spencer Steer (R) 2B
    Nick Senzel (R) LF
    Hunter Renfroe (R) RF
    Tyler Stephenson (R) C
    Noelvi Marte (R) 3B
    Christian Encarnacion-Strand (R) 1B
    Joey Votto (L) DH
    Harrison Bader (R) CF
    Elly De La Cruz (S) SS

      • Jim Walker

        Other than Friedl’s successful bunt, I thought they both looked ragged at the plate Saturday night.

      • AllTheHype

        I can see them both getting a breather. Bader/Renfroe/Votto all have good numbers against Quintana. This lineup is not bad actually. I was maybe expecting something worse. Just glad he’s not sitting Marte and CES.

      • RedBB

        @Jim Walker Friedl went 2-4 and India got on base twice as well yesterday….

      • Jim Walker

        @RedBB>> True, but a guy can have a decent statistical game and look ragged. And I would agree India looked that way much more than Friedl on Saturday. I thought neither of them looked comfortable at the plate. Sit them today and have them fresher for the Twinkies Monday.

    • RedBB

      No India seems insanely dumb unless he is hurting or something. Need every single bat at this point in the season.

    • Redsvol

      every one of these guys either hits lefties well or has a good track record vs. Quintana. If we can’t score some runs with this lineup then statistics truly don’t tell the whole story in baseball.

      Agree with others, we really need a good outing from Williamson today to offset who will likely be pitching the next 2 games.

    • Jim Walker

      Oops crossed in the either with Hype.

  29. Kevin H

    Other than Friedl not playing this isn’t a bad lineup in my opinion.

    • LDS

      Why play Friedl and his .341 average against LH’ers when you can start guys like Votto and his .180 average? Veterans privilege and Bell’s secret knowledge. And as I demonstrated above Bell the Inexplicable is innumerate.

      • Kevin H

        Votto is 13 for 24 against the Mets pitcher. Is the only thing I can think of.

      • LDS

        Yeah @KevinH, that may be true, but likely not recently. Like my boss used to say about things done in the past – what have you done for me lately?

    • Mark Moore

      Yep. Playoff chase vs. a day off. But the planned day off (set weeks ago in “The Book of HDTBell”) always wins out. If it wasn’t Bader, it would be somebody else.

  30. Indy Red Man

    I saw Votto is 13 for 24 vs Quintana and I’m getting better at deciphering how Bell thinks. Senzel isn’t going to sit so I was thinking he might sit India and Freidl. Can’t sit Steer or CES. Both new guys have good #s vs Quintana too so this lineup isn’t too bad. He could’ve played Marte at SS and worked in India, but they really need Elly’s arm and range defensively.

  31. ChrisInVenice

    Bell likes to keep the entire team involved & tries to put each in a position to contribute. If you watch the team dynamics it seems to be working.

  32. RedBB

    Bader and Renfroe better start producing and I mean like today or we should cut one of them and bring up Hurtubise. Maybe cut both and bring Fairchild back up.

  33. Still a Red

    J, What would your line up be?

    • J

      Without knowing who might be complaining about an injury or whatever, and without taking a deep dive into all the relevant stats, off the top of my head, based on the stats I do know and the recent performances I’ve seen, I’d say today’s top of the order would probably be something like Friedl, Steer, Marte, CES. Friedl takes the place of eitehr Votto or Renfroe. Probably Renfroe. (Now Renfroe can hit a big home run to make Bell look good and me look bad. I’ll be rooting for it.)