Lefty Adam Pettyjohn will make first major league start today since 2001 with the Tigers. This guy doesn't throw hard and I mean that. I've seen him in Louisville several times this season and he brings it in the low 80s. Dusty Baker doesn't seem to mind it though because he's a proven winner. He won 15 games for the Bats this season. Maybe he can make a very Jamey Moyer like start today and fight for a spot next season. He could be a nice change of pace from Harang, Volquez, and Cueto all of which are hard throwing righties. Then you throw in wierd throwing Arroyo and then the slow left Pettyjohn who wears out the breaking balls. Next spring will be very interesting for the Reds rotation.
Roy Oswalt, dammed this guy. I guess you have to tip your Cincinnati Reds baseball cap to him as he again beat the Reds last night to improve to 23-1 lifetime against Cincinnati. I have to think at this point when he is on the mound it messes with the Reds head, no pun intended. Oswalt is 17-10 after last night which is a good season for anyone, but this does show he can be beat. That is by everyone but Cincinnati..... 23-1 come on. At least after Oswalt hit the showers the Reds did mount somewhat of a come back, before falling short 8-6. The Reds sent nine batters to the plate in the ninth inning scoring five times. Oswalt, himself went six innings and allowed only one run to the Reds, do we see a trend or pattern here.
Johnny Cueto finished the season with 9 wins and 14 losses. This was a year that Cueto will look back on and say he probably learned more than at any other time in his career. He had growing pains but he did grow. After recording 158 strikeouts this year, one has to believe he is going to be a 200 strikeout pitcher for many years to come. Johnny is and will be a piece of the puzzle next season for the Reds Central Division title hopes.
This Houston series ends a five series winning streak, six if you count the one game series against Florida, that had the Reds rolling into the off season on a high note. Screw you Oswalt, go to the American League, just kidding again. I think Roy Oswalt is one hell of a pitcher and I'm guessing the Reds would agree!!!!! The Reds open the final series of the season tonight as Bronson Arroyo goes for win number 16 tonight against the St.Louis Cardinals.
SEVEN HOME RUNS!!!!!!!!! What a night at the ball park as me and my co-writer son-in-law and daughter and Ethan and Ella decided to take in one more game before Great American Ball Park closes for the winter. Jay Bruce and Joey Votto as I assumed and the Reds official site confirms, are friends on and off the field. But when the game starts they will admit to being competitors on the same team. Both blasted two home runs last night, giving the rookie sluggers twenty-one apiece. I think Reds fans will have plenty to cheer about in the coming years as these two mature into All-Stars. When the dusted finally settled last night the scoreboard read Reds 11 Brewers 2.
Jerry Hairston Jr., Jolbert Cabrera and Andy Phillips each added a home run to make the Reds total seven on the night.
On a night when it looked like the only thing to talk about was offense, Ramon Ramirez won his first career game throwing six really good innings. Ramirez scattered seven hits and only allowed two runs while fanning five. Yes it was a good night at the ball park and there is only three more home games to be played so get out to GABP and see these exciting young Reds as they audition for 2009.
Edinson Volquez again fails to win number 17 tonight as the St. Louis Cardinals take the final game of this three game series by a 5-4 count to avoid the Reds sweep. Volquez is just not pitching as good as he did early this season. He is walking way too many batters and you can see the frustration in his eyes as he doesn't get the close calls from the umpires. He walked six in seven innings tonight and that is becoming more the norm for him lately. He just might be wearing down right along with this season. I do hope he finishes on a high note before the year is over.
Another player that needs to finish on a high note is Jay Bruce. He might have had the worse at bats tonight as I have seen this season by him. The Cardinals pitched him inside all night and all he could do is pop up or strike out and yes he was ugly doing it.
But on a positive note the Reds are still winning at a better clip than at any time this season and as FSN noted tonight, the Reds rookies lead all other teams rookies in home runs hit this season. Jay Bruce and Joey Votto are both sitting on nineteen home runs as of tonight and one would think this pair of rookies will both finish with at least twenty each.
Aaron Harang is back, If you still wondered if Harang was back to his old self, tonight's game should have put that dog to bed. On 'Bark In The Park Night' Aaron threw a compete game shutout at those dogs, um I mean Cardinals. Harang has been the hard luck starter this season, getting the least amount of run support in the National League among all pitchers. Aaron scattered six hits while fanning four and didn't walk a single batter tonight. All the offense he would need was a solo home run by Andy Phillips in the bottom of the fourth, but the Reds weren't done yet. The next man up Jay Bruce also went deep and I mean deep (438') to straight away center field for back to back jacks for the reds. Hey they still weren't done, two outs later Paul Janish hit his first Major League home run to give the Reds three for the inning and that was more than enough for Aaron on this night.
It's late in the year but these young Reds are having fun and winning some ballgames. This was the fourth straight win for them and also the fourth straight series they have won. September has been a good month as the Reds are winners of seven of their last nine games.
On another note, staying with the theme of last night's twenty year anniversary of Tom Browning's perfect game. Tonight was the twenty fifth anniversary of Johnny Bench night at Riverfront Stadium, where Bench actually hit a home run on his night. Yes I do remember that night, not sure who gave up that shot but it was a very special night for probably the best catcher to every play the game. I just can't imagine hitting a home run on a night they set aside to honor your career.
At first I thought maybe Aaron Harang was on the mound tonight. You know were I am going, Harang equals no run support. The Reds just couldn't get anything going against Branden Looper and the St. Louis Cardinals. Looper held the Reds scoreless until the sixth inning when they loaded the bases to set up a bases clearing double for Edwin Encarnacion. This three run double was all the Reds and Bronson needed tonight. Arroyo won his career high fifteenth game against ten losses. Bronson had a pretty good line tonight, fanning four and scattering five hits over his seven innings of work.
Tonight was also a special night as the Reds honored Mr. Perfect, Tom Browning with his own bobble head for everyone in attendance. I did get one and it's a nice bobble head. Just because the Reds are out of it doesn't mean I won't go and enjoy a night at the ball park. It will soon be another long cold spell until baseball returns, so try to get out and see one more game before the season ends. Back to Browning, he threw a perfect game against the LA Dodgers twenty years ago tonight. It was and still is the only perfect game in Reds history. Think about this, in over 138 years of Major League Baseball there has been 17 perfect games thrown.....that's pretty special!!!!!!!!
If Ned Yost can be fired while leading the wildcard race with twelve games remianing in the season is Dusty feeling any heat. Dusty is thirteen games under .500 and Ned Yost has the Brewers in a virtual tie with the Phillies for the NL wild card. If the Reds were still fighting for a post season birth with thirteen games left to play we would have already engraved Dusty Bakers name on the National League Manager of the year award. Don't get me wrong I understand probably more was expected of the Brewers than was expected of the Reds, at least in terms of managements standpoint. I now offer up a few questions.
1. What did the Reds management expect of Dusty this year? 2. Is Dusty's honeymoon over, when will he be held accountable? 3. How many times will Reds fans have to hear "we are in a rebuilding mode" 4. Are the Reds the team that becomes the 'new Cubs' in a few more years of losing? 5. And most important, as a fan what were your expectations of the 2008 Reds?
No Reds baseball tonight, don't cry, you know what Tom Hanks thinks of crying and baseball. Ok, Reds fans if you want to see a piece of history that was made twenty years ago tune in to FSN Ohio tonight. Tom Browning's prefect game will will replayed there at 8pm. Browning owns the only prefect game ever thrown in Reds history. I guess it's no coincidence that tomorrow night is Mr. Prefect's bobble head give away night at Great American Ballpark as the Reds kick off the last home stand of the season. I'm sure there will be alot of reminiscing going on tonight and should be fun to watch the game as it unfolds again. CHECK IT OUT....Screw Monday Night Football watch a prefect game being thrown.
(SP) Micah Owings switched dugouts in Arizona Friday night and then comes in as a pinch hitter in the 10th inning last night and wins it for the Reds with a big double. If Owings begins the spring struggling next season, is it possible that the Reds move him to the outfield or even 1st or 3rd? This guy can flat hit and hit with pop. He's now batting .302 on the season. His lifetime average is .318 with a .588 slugging percentage. I think this guy can be a big part of the Reds pitching rotation next season. After a terrible season, there's a lot of positives for this Reds organization with young players. A whole lot of young players.
Aarong Harang and former Kentucky Wildcat Brandon Webb battled it out tonight in a game that again saw the Reds bullpen implode in the eighth inning. Aaron and Brandon were both on top of their games. Harang could have filed suit for nonsupport once again. He gives up 'one unearned' in seven innings of work and the Reds don't score a single run while he is pitching. Bad thing for Harang was the fact that Webb was a little better than that. Webb pitched eight scoreless innings to make him the first National League 20 game winner in several years. The Diamondback bullpen made the game interesting by finally allowing a couple of runs to the Reds in the ninth. But yeah you guessed it, they needed three runs as the Reds bullpen gave up two more in the D-Back eighth to make the rally a run short for the Reds. Harang has the least run support not only in the National League but all of baseball. It's almost a given when he pitches the Reds don't score. Aaron's record now stands at 4-16, you have to believe after his last four starts that he is physically healthy and will be ready to roll next season. If tonight's performance is any indication Harang will again be the ace of this staff in 2009, yes he was that good tonight. Not taking anything away from Edinson Volquez, but one year doesn't make a staff ace. Let's hope they are both good enough that we have to argue about this next season.
There is another great match up slated for tomorrow as the Reds throw Edinson Volquez against the Diamondback's flame throwing Randy Johnson. The old man against the kid.....stay tuned and we will report how the kid kicks ass tomorrow.
Well finally.......The Reds did get Micah Owings from the D-Backs to finally complete the Dunn trade after over a month. Owings started out on fire with the D-Backs this season and then faded and was eventually sent to Triple A. He's got a load of potential and has a big stick at the plate.
In other news, Brandon Phillips is officially out for the season with a finger injury. He had surgury on it this week. Get ready for next season Brandon.
Bronson Arroyo and CC Sabathia hooked up in a good pitchers duel yesterday in a game the Brewers needed to avoid a three game by sweep by our Reds. CC was his usual self take away the three run home run Jerry Hairston Jr. hit in the fifth inning. CC fanned eight Reds in his seven innings of work and left the game on the hook for the loss. Bronson Arroyo held the Brewers to two runs, both unearned, in his seven innings and he left the game with a win if the bullpen could hold the lead for him. This is where yesterdays game reminded me of last years team where you always worried what would the bullpen do to screw this game up. It wasn't pretty yesterday either as David Weathers allowed the tying and winning run to score on him. In one inning of work he let Sabathia off the hook for his first loss as a Brewer and let one slip away from Bronson, who with only two 'unearned' runs allowed really pitched his ass off and deserved a much better outcome than what he got.
Yesterday makes me wonder why Francisco Cordero can only pitch one inning at a time. Yesterday's game would have been the prefect time to make him earn his huge salary. He is by far the best guy we have in the bullpen, he might still want to impress his last year's team that let him get away, so use him. My reason for thinking Dusty made the wrong call again in yesterday's game. It was the 2,3,4 batters coming up in the eighth so why not throw our best at their best, hell if Cordero can't go but one inning take a look at which inning is going to be the toughest for the bullpen to shut down. Let Cordero pitch the eighth and bring Weathers in for the ninth where it's the bottom of the order due up. IS IT THAT HARD DUSTY!!!!
The Cincinnati Enquirer is reporting that Brandon Phillips has flew back to Cincinnati to have his right index finger examined. They are saying the Brandon broke his finger while attempting a bunt in the 11th inning of last nights game. Brandon didn't get the bunt down but he did single home the winning run of that game in that same at bat. Reports are saying Phillips is out for the reminder of the year.
It wasn't the ninth inning tonight but it was again last inning scoring that lead these Reds to their third straight win. With a run in the top of the 11th these guys seem to never say never. It's way to late for them to do anything but play spoiler, and playing spoiler is what they are doing. They have took the first two games of a three game series from the wild card leading Milwaukee Brewers, on the road in Miller Park no less.
Ramon Ramirez went six inning and only allowed one hit and one run. Ramirez actually had a string of ten straight batters retired as he left the game after throwing 107 pitches. He left the game with a 4-1 lead an in line for his first career win. Jared Burton came on in relief in the seventh and gave up three runs in his one inning of work to keep Ramirez from getting that elusive first career win and was charged with a blown save.
At the plate the Edwin Encarnation and Jay Bruce smashed back to back home runs, numbers 25 and 17 respectively. Wilkin Castillo had three hits for the second straight game to raise his average to .615, yet another hot rookie call up for these Reds. Jay Bruce added a single to his aforementioned home run and really seems to be back on track with the bat as he raised his average back to a more respectable .265
The Reds are making life a little tougher for these playoff contenders as they take another ninth inning win tonight at Miller Park In Milwaukee against the current wild card team, the Brewers. It was looking like a bad start to this road trip as the Reds fell behind early and just couldn't get anything going until the eight inning when Joey Votto, who is on fire, blasted his 19th home run to make it a two run game. In the ninth the Reds loaded the bases with no outs and the big hit came off Jeff Keppinger's bat as he banged one off the wall for a two run double scoring what would be the wining run for the Reds. Corey Patterson also had a clutch hit in the ninth that scored the first run in that inning. Jay Bruce made one of the best defensive plays of his young career in the bottom of the ninth to steal a for sure double from Craig Counsel with only one out. Counsel can still book it around the bases and very well could have stretched it to a triple where he could have scored on a fly ball to tie this game. Awesome Catch Jay!!!!!!
Edinson Volquez might have missed his shot at having a twenty win season after a pretty fair performance tonight that just wasn't quite good enough. The Reds just scored too late for Edinson to get a win, but on the bright side they keep him from taking another loss with the big ninth inning. It was looking like the Reds #1 pitcher would lose to the Brewers #5 pitcher, but thank goodness it wasn't to be. I hate to say it but even with Volquez fanning ten tonight, Dave Bush pitched a much better game. Bush was let down by Brewers closer Salomon Torres who blew the save for him.
The Reds also called up seven players from Louisville and it wasn't so much who got called up as who didn't get the call. Homer Bailey wasn't included in the late season promotions as he is being examined for a problem with a knee ligament. Good luck to all the guys getting a chance to show the Reds brass what they have this next few weeks as the season winds down.
After the pitching duel, wink wink, that saw the Chicago Cubs end up on top, this afternoons game was the series decider and the Reds scored three in the bottom of the ninth to win the game. Aaron Harang threw a pretty solid game going seven innings and allowing six hits and three runs while fanning five. Of note was the fact that Dusty didn't start Chris Dickerson today, but he did pitch hit in the ninth and had a two run hit that was bobbled in a very clutch AB. Jolbert Cabrera then followed that with the game winning hit.
After the game on WGN one of their announcers made it pretty clear that Kerry Wood wasn't happy about Cabrera's celebration after the game winning hit. Is there more bad blood brewing between these two teams. I predict this will become one of the biggest rivalries in the National League in the next few years as the Reds will become a team that others will again fear. The Cubs just won't like it as they start to take a regular ass whipping from us and their fans will think twice about driving to Cincinnati and spending their money to watch their team lose!!!!!
It was a good home stand with the Reds going 6-3 and now head to Milwaukee for tomorrow nights game. The rookies continue to impress and this will show benefits next year.
What a great start to this three game series against the Chicago Cubs. Bronson Arroyo pitched into the seventh inning allowing only one run and striking out six to win his 14th game. It was another solid outing for Bronson who has been lights out the last couple months. Bronson allowed only four hits and two walks and with the Reds scoring 10 runs he actually cruised to this victory. Bronson is now 3-0 against the Cubs.
At the plate Jay Bruce smashed his 16th home run, the first grand slam of his career. Jay actually stated after the game that this was truly his first ever grand slam......and that goes for little league right thru high school and the minors. He also added his 14th double. It looks like Jay is dialed in again and ready to hit more like he did when he first came up this season.
Speaking of dialed in, if Joey Votto don't win the National League player of the week there should be an investigation. Joey is knocking the cover off the ball, he went deep again tonight, his 18th home run. Votto also added his 25th double and 3 RBI's to extend his total to 70 on the year. His average is now standing at .297, yes he has quietly put together a very solid rookie season.
Like I have said here before I have been a Reds fan for all of my 54 years and this is by far the best crop of rookies I have ever seen in a Reds uniform at the same time. You tell me when the Reds put four rookies like this on the field at the same time. Jay Bruce, Joey Votto, Chris Dickerson, and tomorrows starting pitcher Johnny Cueto make up the best crop of rookies I have ever seen, as a group, in a Reds uniform.
Chris Dickerson as of last night had did something no one has ever done in the history of the game. Of his first twenty-five hits fifteen have gone for extra bases. Yes you heard that right, this has never been done in Major League Baseball history. I am not going to take credit for looking up this kind of a stat, but on today's game FSN announcer Tom Brennaman shot this tidbit at the listeners. To go along with this record start Chris has a .333 batting average and a slugging percentage of .718 so this guy is truly on fire. Can he win the everyday outfield job for next year. You gotta believe it's looking pretty good so far. Good Luck Chris, keep it up. He also seems like a very nice and friendly type guy that can actually smile and show everyone that he knows how fortunate he is to be a Major League Baseball player. This is quite the contrast to his teammate playing the hot corner who appears constipated at times and never seems to have anything to smile about.....again did I say that!!!!!!
On an afternoon when the brooms could have come out for the wrong team, the Reds fought their way back from a 5-0 deficit to win the final game of this three game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Jay Bruce hit his fifteen home run in the bottom of the second to start a string of a run an inning for the Reds until they finally tied the game at five in the sixth. All this seemed like for naught as the Pirates again went ahead in the top of the eighth on a Nate McLouth home run, this freakin guy is for real. But the Reds weren't to be denied this afternoon as they came back with three runs in the bottom of the eighth to end the two game losing streak. Joey Votto had a bases loaded single in this big inning to add to his 17th home run of the season he hit earlier in the game. Joey Votto is the clean up hitter in this lineup, but he could be moved down to fifth in the order if the Reds acquire a much needed slugging right handed bat in the off season.
Things won't get much easier tomorrow when Bronson Arroyo will face off against Ted Lilly, in the first game of a three game series against the team with the best record in the National League the Chicago Cubs. Arroyo and Lilly both thirteen game winners faced off a couple weeks ago with Bronson getting the best of Lilly 2-1. Hopefully history repeats itself tomorrow night. Can the Reds at least play spoiler to a team that's trying to win it's first World Series in 100 years.
On another note from this afternoon's game....Josh Fogg left the game in the bottom of the third inning after straining his groin scoring the Reds second run of the game. After giving up five runs in the first two innings, maybe this saves the game for the Reds.......Did I just say that!!!!!!
Edinson Volquez fanned thirteen tonight to set a new career high for himself, that's the good news. The bad news was that the basement dweller Pittsburgh Pirates took another one run game from the Reds. This win, once again in the Reds own yard, sealed the season series for the Pirates. If you can't win at home over the last place team in your division then what the hell are the Cubs going to do to you this weekend.
Dusty Baker gave Edinson Volquez was given an extra inning of work tonight that he normally wouldn't do. After throwing over 100 pitches by the end of the sixth, and the scored still tied 4-4 Dusty gave him the ball for the seventh. Everyone knew what that was all about, give him a chance to win his 17th game and still be in line for maybe a twenty win season. The Reds just couldn't get him the lead and the bullpen gave up two more runs to seal the win for Pittsburgh. Volquez would have to run the table the rest of the way to become the Reds first twenty game winner in over twenty years.
Chris Dickerson just keeps on keeping on. Chris blasted his sixth home run that was measured to be over 425 feet. This guy is making it tougher and tougher for the Reds not to pencil him in as the everyday left fielder next season. Fifteen of his twenty-four hits have gone for extra bases and his slugging percentage is now .707 with an outstanding .320 batting average there seems to be very few holes in his game.
Bronson Arroyo was named the co player of the week for the first time in his career. Bronson led all pitchers throwing 16 innings including a complete game for the first of his two wins last week. If Bronson finishes up the season this strong he can still have a pretty fair season after getting off to probably the worse start up of his career. Rock and Roll Bronson!!!
Off the field, it was reported today by Tom Brennaman during the Reds broadcast, that Brandon Phillips was the Reds recipient of the Roberto Clemente award for his outstanding work on the field and off the field. Tom told of several things that Brandon did off the field including giving $25,000 to a local youth league field that was in dire need of fixing up. Anytime we can help the youth of this country do something positive with their free time, especially play baseball, only good things can happen. I have always said that Brandon is more than a great baseball player, if anyone is out there signing autographs before a game you can bet Brandon is one of them, and he is always doing it with a smile!!!!
Playoffs? Yep, at least someone in the Reds organization is going. The Louisville Bats take an all time record 88 wins into the International League playoffs that begin Wednesday night versus Durham. The first game will be a great matchup with Matt Maloney going up against #1 prospect David Price from the Rays. Game two will feature the struggling Homer Bailey. Hopefully, Bailey will get it together. Go Bats. Be looking for a Bats giveaway tomorrow.
The Reds drop game 1 of the cellar dwellar series in Cincy. Aaron Harang is now 4-15 in 2008. That is unbelievable. The bright spots were again the young guys in Hannigan, Dickerson, and Jay Bruce. The Reds are now only 3 games up on the Pirates for dead last. At least we are playing for something.
Fresh off a very poor 3-6 road trip the Reds licked their wounds and limped home to Great American Ballpark and took three straight from the Giants. Yeah I know it was the Giants but it was still a three game sweep and how many of those has their been this season. Pittsburgh riding a sweet 10 game losing streak comes to town on Tuesday night to take their medicine as the Reds will continue to roll this week. Can anyone else remember the last time the Reds didn't play on Labor Day. Hell me and my co-writer had to go see the Reds AAA farm team at Louisville Slugger Field today to get our baseball fix. The Louisville Bats are set to start the International League Playoffs on Wednesday night after winning their division this season. This was no small task as the Reds have raided the roster many times this season. Bat's manager Rick Sweet was named International League manager of the year, an award well deserved. Hopefully he gets his shot in the bigs.....do you feel heat on your heels Dusty!!!!
Ok guys one game at a time and lets finish this season off on a high note!!!!