The Cincinnati Reds could use a bit of a bolster to their pitching if the opening series of the season tells us anything (it doesn’t, even if it feels like it’s been a rough one). Left-handed starter Nick Lodolo got a late start to the spring as he recovered from a leg injury suffered last year and that led to him not being ready to begin the season on time. But on Sunday afternoon he made his first minor league rehab start and for much of the game he looked strong.

In Triple-A Louisville’s third game of the year, Nick Lodolo allowed one run on two hits (one was a solo home run) while walking three batters, hitting a batter, and striking out eight. In his five innings of 1-run baseball he threw 77 pitches with 49 of them being strikes. For the first four innings of the game, Lodolo’s fastball was 93-95 and hit 96. But in the final inning of the outing his velocity dipped to 93-94.

On one side of the ledger you love to see eight strikeouts and just 77 pitches thrown in five innings to go along with five ground balls, no line drives, and just one fly ball during the game. The velocity was good and he mixed and matched things up.

But on the other side of the ledger he did put four batters on base with a freebie as he walked three and hit a batter. Lodolo has hit a lot of batters in his career, but he hasn’t issued a ton of walks. Hopefully in his next rehab outing he can clean that up a little bit.

The Reds are expecting Nick Lodolo to make one more rehab start with Louisville before returning to the big leagues on April 10th. That start will be on the road as the Bats take on Gwinnett down in Georgia.

11 Responses

  1. Hanawi

    Good news. I still think he has the highest ceiling of all of the young pitchers

  2. Klugo

    The key will be how he feels mañana.

  3. RedsGettingBetter

    I think if all is good tomorrow he is gonna throw between 85-95 pitches the next outing likely on Friday…

  4. CB

    I watched innings 2-4. Dude was killing it through 3; he seemed to tire after that. Which is to say, I think/hope some of the wildness, and falling velocity in the back end of the start, have to do with stamina. Presumably that will come with a couple more reps.

  5. RedsMonk65

    Good step. Looking forward to seeing him up with the Reds soon, as well as some bullpen reinforcements (Moll, Young, etc.)

  6. Brian

    If they both stay healthy(big if), Lodolo seems like a much better pitcher than Greene is.

  7. Mark Moore

    It’s a good start in my book given where he was a few weeks ago.

  8. CFD3000

    There’s a lot to like here, but the big question is indeed how does he feel today. 100% healthy is priority one, everything else is a bonus. That drop in velocity makes me a little nervous. I might need to go see the GBraves game on Friday. Stay well soon Nick Lodolo!

  9. Brian

    Take this with a massive grain of salt, but 2022 Lodolo’s fastball averaged 94.4 where 2023 Lodolo averaged 93.2. If Lodolo’s sitting 93-96 early tailing off to 93-94 late in the game, that feels OK compared to what’s typical for him. If we start seeing more fastballs in the 91.x – 92.x range than 94.x-95.x range, I’ll get a little wary.

  10. Jason T.

    Health is paramount here. Cautiously optimistic. Hopefully he feels good today.
    Who leaves the rotation if he’s activated as planned?
    Would like to see velocity consistent and walks down.