Monday, May 31, 2010
As alluded to, the Reds went buck wild on Friday and Saturday. Sam LeCure got the spot start on Friday, and was provided with a shit load of runs, 15. He cruised to his first big league win, going 6 with only the three runs allowed. Gomes and his overgrown mohawk was the big celebrity, going 4 for 4 with a bomb, triple, and a couple of singles. He knocked in 4 of the 15. Phil and Drew Sutton, before his demotion, also utilized the large fly. Sutton with the bases loaded. Now, get the hell out of here. Actually, he was just filling in for Janish-Yanish while he was back home burying his gramma. The Reds Rocket is sympathetic to your loss. Saturday was very much the same story. Harang was strong but didn't need it. He went 7 and, for the first time this season, allowed fewer hits than innings pitched (4) but that was wholly unnecessary as the offense 'sploded. Bruce and Hernandez both went yard twice with Ray-Jay knocking in 4 and Hernandez adding a couple of additional hits. The bombs marked Ramon's first and second on the season, tying him with Ryan Hanigan. I'd make a bigger deal about Ramon having the power of a writer of the Reds Rocket but he's been playing pretty well lately, so I'll let it slide. Masset was able to work in an inning of garbage time and allowed a run. Hopefully he's just about used up his 10 poor performances followed by 10 dynamite ones.
By Sunday, the Reds were just plain exhausted from all of the bat swinging to do much of everything. Bruce countered his big night Saturday by coming up in seemingly every big at bat but not delivering shit. Or maybe more accurately, delivering a box full of shit to all Reds fans. In a box, from Fed Ex. You could probably sell that on Ebay. But, he wasn't the only one. The only party bothering to swing the bat Sunday was B. Phill who been hot of late. Maybe he sees those All-Star voting tallies and believes that he warrants some consideration. Leake was solid again, 6 IP with no runs allowed but just another no decision. Maybe the team doesn't like to hear him popping off about building cabinets in the spring training facility. Nobody likes a kiss ass.
Today, Arroyo was fine until the rains started to fall. Then he lost focus and gave up a buttload of hits. Votto took the whole weekend off but claims he may be ready to go tomorrow. That would be of some, if not a lot of help. Even with the two straight losses, there were two which preceded those. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Friday, May 28, 2010
Cueto didn't really need all of the offensive support, but appreciated it anyway. By the end of the 4th, the Reds were up 8-0, so all Johhny had to do was throw strikes. He threw plenty, getting some swings and misses and striking out 9 over his 6 innings of shut out ball. The fine performance moves his record to 5-1 with an ERA, estimated by the Reds Rocket statistical department, to be in the mid-3.00s. And he's got blisters on his fingers. Just wait and see how good he looks once the skin on his fingers isn't peeling off.
The offense showcased back to back bombs by Rolen and Bruce in the 1st, Rolen's with a couple of friends on base. Aside from those two bombs, and a opposite field double by Bruce, the Reds were all singles. Miguel Cairo had three more of his own filling in for Votto's sore neck at first.
The Reds welcome another new addition to the team today as Sam LeCure gets to make his debut in the place of Bailey's broke down shoulder. Sam's been dominating AAA as I've gleaned from reading the recent press releases announcing his scheduled start tonight. I did get a chance to see him in Spring Training, so I can at least pretend to know something about him. Regardless of the scouting report, it's the Astros he's dealing with, so he appears to have lucked out. They're brutal and the Reds are quite good, 8 games over .500 and climbing. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Troubling, however, was Masset's latest poor performance. He entered with a runner on 1st, gave up a hit and walked a batter without recording an out. Now that Arty Rhodes has arthritis in his ankle and is taking a little break, it is the Reds Rocket's official suggestion that Masset start pitching slightly better to ensure that the Reds win game which they are leading late. So, we'll leave that up to him or maybe I'll place a couple of calls.
The offensive star last night, as he is every time he makes an appearance, was Miguel Cairo. Old Man Inveirno went deep for his first homer for the Reds and even added an additional two-out base hit. The hit resulted in Hanigan getting thrown out at the plate by Garrett Jones but at least he's trying. Stubbs and Hanigan also had two hits. Hooray for the bottom of the order. Votto got, hopefully, the lone day off yesterday to rest his aching neck. If any reporter asks him about it, the interview is over. Over! Reds take the series today behind Cueto and his blister. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
For some reason, the Reds really struggle with Paul Maholm who, apparently, is good friends with Cowboy Jeff Brantley. That's where the advantage comes from. Brantley has him on the same power diet, at least 8 scoops of ice cream daily. That will pay off and appears to have done so at least against Cincinnati. At least, we get to see Arroyo tonight and the offense loves supporting him especially against people named Ohlendorf. I think it's because he has that boat and, since he knows a lot of Jack Johnson songs, there are always women around for the players to impress with their machismo.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
The Reds also said hello to Enerio Del Rosario who made his major league debut out of the pen in the 7th. Unfortunately, he fooled Ryan Hanigan when he hit the glove with an offspeed pitch, striking out McCutchen but allowing him to reach on a past ball. So, Elias, do your research. When was the last time a pitcher made his major league debut, struck out a batter but was credited with recording no outs? The Reds Rocket statistical computing machine is on the fritz, or I'd just answer that for everyone right now. That and I have far more important things to do like sit here and try and think of something clever to write. It's just not coming, so I'll wrap it up. Leake on the hill again today going after win numero 5. The Reds Rocket predicts his chances in the range of fair to overwhelming. It's a wide range. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Mr. Redlegs Negotiates Treaty With Tribe, Exchanging Single Win for Cure for Syphilis, Reds Take Two
Today, with the above-referenced treaty of the two sovereignties on their mind, the Reds mercifully allowed the Indians the final game of the series. Bailey excited after only 2 and a third with dreaded "shoulder tightness." But, fortunately, he felt well enough to tell the media that he felt fine and should not have been removed from the game. "My shoulder's great and Bryan Price is a dipshit" was the quote. So, he should be ready to go in about five days. Rolen was the only source of offense today, hitting a bomb in the 1st with Cabrera on and another in the 6th to tie things up. Micah Owings, making an emergency appearance, pitched adequately. He loaded up the bases on walks and allowed Bailey's only running remaining to score but didn't give up any runs of his own. That was important because Commander Toothpicks said no Masset or Coco today. Owings was followed by Danny Ray who was followed by Fisher. Danny Ray was the eventual loser. Tough break, I think that flat bill is affecting his velocity.
Reds made the long trip from Cleveland to Cincinnati after the game where they will need plenty of time to prepare for the Pirates, who actually beat somebody today - the Braves. Perhaps they won't be quite as bad as when the Reds saw them last. But perhaps they will. I think the latter perhaps is much more likely because the talent level on that team is running dangerously close to AAA levels. Harang is already employing his positive thinking technique and envisioning his 3rd win of the year. If not, he's planning on going all Scott Hall/Razor Ramon on the surrounding village. 'I'll kill each and every one of you with my bare hands." You'll notice there's not exclamation point. Aaron feels there's no reason to raise your voice.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
It's too bad, because the offense looked real good for one inning. Lighting up Tommy Hanson for 8 in the 2nd. Votto had the big one with a bomb to left center with the bases full on a 3-1 grooved fastball. But, there were other problems leading up to the 9th inning implosion. The Reds committed two errors, one by Leake who otherwise probably deserved win number 5, and then two more in the 9th with a third possibly deserved when Cabrera couldn't come up with a potential double play ball. Hopefully, the Reds got all of the awful play out of their system today, so we can go back to seeing the team we have learned to love in the upcoming series with the cure-all for poor play, the Indians. With the loss, the Reds fell out of first place for the first time in four days. Tough break guys, I guess you just can't have a team-wide loss of all ability, even if it's only for one inning against the Savages. I hope you all learned something today.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
After starting off poorly, allowing 2 of the 4 runs in the first, Bailey thought about killing and dismembering a variety of woodland creatures, and settled down. He ended up putting up another pretty nice looking start, 7 innings with just the two runs allowed.
Dusty, who sat Rolen today, makes no secret of where he derives his strategic advantage over his managing brethren - he merely eats the ants which live on the day old food in the clubhouse, ingesting not only the sustenance of their body but also the ideas in their brains. House flies also work but it was their idea to buy that motorcycle which just sits outside his mansion. It seemed like a really fun idea at the time. Reds shuffle on down to Hotlanta tomorrow where they begin another two-game set but will undoubtedly receive at least three wins for the ferocity of the beating they have planned for the Braves. The team is hot. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Monday, May 17, 2010
The Reds, affirming Dio's prediction, won another one this evening, this time over the Brewers. They waited to get pain in the ass Gallardo with his dominating stuff out of the game then took out their sticks on hogbody Big Frucking Nasty in the 7th. They dropped a solid five spot on Coffey with the big hit coming off the bat of Gomes in the form of a three-run shot to left center. Cueto was good again, lasting through the 7th in picking up his third win of the season. Don't worry, he'll probably throw a few too many pitches next came and the Brennaman family can hammer him about his focus on the mound. "Of all of the players in the majors today, Johnny Cueto is hands down the most frustrating person to watch pitch a ball game." The Reds conclude their two-game series tomorrow afternoon with Homeboy taking on Manny Parra. Come on Brewers, get your head in the game. Parra stands no chance. At least they know that coming in. Reds continue to impress everyone tomorrow. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Sunday, May 16, 2010
After dropping game one Friday night when Harang made a couple of mistakes and the Reds opted not to drive in the tying runs in the 9th, the Reds rebounded Saturday with Leake on the hill. He looked real sharp and Coco was provided with just enough insurance to allow Cabrera to relay home the final out. Thom's near stroke following Hernandez's tag at the plate summed things up nicely. The offense even looks legitimate. If you look at the batter order you see a lot more .260 and .270 averages replacing the .220 and .230s we've come to expect. Dusty's new lineup with Cabrera leading things off and Stubbs re-acclimating with Major League pitching from the 7th spot appears to be a strong piece of strategy from Skip.
So, perhaps it's a bit early to become too excited but the Reds look like they might have a pretty good team. However, I've had this scenario presented to me in the past. Big wins are often followed by soul crushing defeats, so the Reds Rocket will be paying particular attention to the series at home with Milwaukee beginning tomorrow. For now, I will sleep soundly reliving the three complete games in the last week. Nice work team. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Votto, who's hitting like .800 for his career on Zach Duke, took him yard in the 1st after a Phillips double. Reds added two more in the second and Stubbs, now carrying a lofty .196 batting average, capped the scoring off with a bomb in the 4th. With the win the Reds are a solid 4 games over .500 which, as everyone will agree, is quite good. If there is a such a thing as a big series in May, this one coming up against the Cardinals may qualify. The Cards are a couple game up on the Reds but have lost two in a row to the Astros, who everyone will agree, are awful at baseball and likely terrible husbands and fathers. So, that clearly skews things in the Reds' favor. The staff is not quite so bad anymore, the offense is hitting a little bit and the defense doesn't make you want to stick a fork in your eye anymore. I can't remember what optimism feels like but perhaps this is it. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
The offense started off quick, then hit the cruise control button, which, if you drive a 1994 Oldsmobile 88 like me, doesn't function properly. Heisey picked up his first career hit on a roller to third, B. Phill moved him to 3rd on a hit and run, then he scored his first career run on a sac fly by Votto. He later had his first career home run, first career caught stealing, and first career late inning nap in the easy chair in the clubhouse. Typically, the nap is reserved for future hall of famers but Dusty cut him some slack. I think the latter will be the most memorable. The game was actually pretty competitive until the Reds piled it on late. I think that all 15 people at the game thought the Pirates had a genuine chance at victory. But, they, like today, do not. Homeboy is ready to shake off his early season terribleness and dominate the Bucs. We all remember what he looked like in his 4 starts down the stretch against Pittsburgh last season. Pretty impressive. The smell of sweep still looms. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
The offense didn't do a whole lot but didn't need to. Nix drove in the first run with an opposite field double and Rolen knocked in Votto in the top of the 7th to provide the winning margin. Coco picked up his 11th save which is good enough for second in the NL behind the dominant Matt Capps. I bet the Pirates wish that the Nationals hadn't agreed to pay him way too much money to underachieve. They're really going to miss him on Matt Capps wax replica night. The replica is of his dong, like that one the groupies made of Hendrix in the '60's, and is given away to the first 10,000 kids. But, back to the offense, not much of it but they were saving it for today in support of Cueto. He's unpredictable. The Reds Rocket can feel the winds of sweep a'blowin. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Monday, May 10, 2010
Saturday, after keeping things close for 6, the Reds 'sploded in the 7th and 8th. Hanigan hit a grand slam, which bumped his average up to .409 and gives him more rbis then he had all last season and everyone had a fine time getting hits and dominating the Cubs. Harang was presented with his second win of the season with a nice 6 and 2/3rds. His removal occurred before the offensive outburst, or they may have let him finish the 7th. His goal was actually 6 and 1/3, so he eclipsed that. Yesterday, there was less offense but still enough to allow for a victory over the Cubs. Leake kept everything real quiet for 6, then briefly allowed the Cubs the lead in the 7th on a bomb from some guy named Colvin (Cubs, give me a break). Leake's strategy paid off as there is nothing worse than fighting back from a deficit only to immediately fall behind again. But, the garbage-eating bears took the bait and crawled into the bear trapping dumpster and Votto launched a three-run bomb in the Reds' half of the 7th. Masset pitched well again and Coco shut the door. Everyone took turns punching Cubs announcers Len Kasper and Bob Brenly in the stomach. Those guys are the worst.
Reds make the journey to Pittsburgh but without a day off. The Reds prefer having some time to catch their breath before immediately launching into a new series but unfortunately, that preference won't be recognized this time. Reds begin things tonight with Arroyo tossing some farm-fresh salad to a previously very lucky Pittsburgh team. This time it's personal. Reds take the three games they, out of the goodness of their heart, volunteered to the Pirates earlier in the season. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Thursday, May 6, 2010
The offense piled up 12 hits over 5 innings against Jon Neise. Two of those hits, by Phillips and Gomes, left the yard. Then they took a little break, for about 4 innings. They deserved it after all of that activity. But Cueto, with the exception of the 3rd inning where he gave up singles to Gary Matthews (.143) and Henry Blanco (characterized by a career of impotency with the wood stick), then walked Angel Pagan and Alex Cora (.179), pitched reasonably well. He lasted 6, threw 120 pitches and was in line for the victory. Masset even added a dominant inning to the two he threw during Monday's win. But old Coco proved to be unreliable and allowed Frank Catalanotto of all people to reach and score the tying run. Fortunately he has good friends like Cabrera to bail him out.
The Cubs roll into town tomorrow, fresh off losing the series to Pittsburgh. You have to be really bad to lose multiple games in a row to Pittsburgh, or a young team who happened to have three consecutive very poor games combined with timely ineffectiveness from the starting staff. The Reds may fall into the latter category. Regardless, Cubs are dead meat. Sucker. Reds! Reds! Reds!
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
After taking Monday's game on a skyball walk-off home run by Nix, which I just couldn't find 5 minutes to comment about, Reds dropped yesterday's game but not after first showing a little heart. Votto and Rolen went back to back in the 8th to tie things up before Coco let Rod Barajas be the hero. That should never happen. But it did and Coco is going to have to live with the disappointment.
Additionally, the write up following the game took some issue with Phillips' staunch refusal to run out balls that he thinks are going to leave the yard or going to be caught for routine outs. Sure, had he hustled to 3rd, he would have scored on Votto's sacrifice fly but give the boy a break. If you're hitting bombs, who looks cooler out there - Phillips with his patented lean or Adam Rosales hitting the bags at top speed? The answer is unquestionably Phillips. Dusty understands this, that's why he hasn't taken any punitive action against B. Phill. He'll hustle when it's necessary and it looks sweet.
Reds get to play ball in the morning and early afternoon today, which they enjoy. Gives them plenty of time to make it to Chili's for happy hours. The Reds love eating apps. Reds take series today and everyone is quite pleased.
Monday, May 3, 2010
In addition to Cueto's somewhat surprisingly solid 5 innings on Friday, Homeboy was good, three runs over six and two thirds on Saturday. That was good enough for a no decision but his last couple starts have not been quite so vomit inducing. Yesterday, Harang picked up his fourth loss of the season which trails only Charlie Morton for the league lead. Keep up the good work Aaron. Actually, he pitched pretty well too, keeping the Cardinals in a semi-debilitating choke hold for 6 innings. He gave up a bomb to David Frese but otherwise looked pretty good. The team appears to just need Dusty giving everyone a kick in their collective fat asses to get things running again. We can all be confident that the Reds are very good and will even things up with St. Louis later this season.