Reds lineup vs. Mets
The Reds have become a left-handed heavy roster this season due to injuries to left fielders Ryan Ludwick and Chris Heisey.
Both Ludwick and Heisey are right-handed hitters. Reds general manager Walt Jocketty is not beating the bushes for a right-
handed batter on the trade market to fill the void, however.
“We’ve looked at it,” Jocketty said on Tuesday. “There is really nobody out there that would make much of a difference. We’re just biding our time to see what happens.”
Ludwick is out until at least the All-Star break with a right shoulder injury suffered on Opening Day that required surgery. Heisey has been on the disabled list since April 29 with a right hamstring strain. He suffered a setback in the first game of his rehab assignment last week and is still at least a couple of weeks from returning.
The Reds have patched things together primarily with lefty hitters Xavier Paul and Donald Lutz….and switch hitter Derrick Robinson. I will have a little more, and other items as well, later in my Reds notebook on MLB.com/Reds.com.
Reds lineup vs. Mets
*Now Shin-Soo Choo sits (for real) against lefty Jonathon Niese.
*Zack Cozart is back after missing two games with a stomach bug.
*Brandon Phillips is 5-for-13 (.385) with two home runs in his career vs. Niese.
*From Stats Inc.: Mike Leake has limited the Mets’ David Wright, Daniel Murphy and Ike Davis to a combined 3-for-28.
MLB announced Monday that Reds 1B Joey Votto is the National League Player of the Week.
Here is part of the press release:
Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto has been named National League Player of the Week for the period ending May 19th. The announcement was made earlier today on MLB Network.
In six games last week, Votto led the Majors with a .583 batting average (14-for-24) and a .655 on-base percentage. The three-time N.L. All-Star ranked among league leaders with a .917 slugging percentage (2nd), 14 hits (T-2nd), 22 total bases (3rd) and seven runs scored (T-3rd) while clubbing two home runs with five RBI. Votto had five multi-hit performances last week and extended his current hitting streak to eight games as the Reds posted a 4-2 record for the week. On Saturday, the 29-year-old paced Cincinnati’s offense, reaching base six times in six plate appearances. Votto went 4-for-4 with two walks, a double, a home run and two RBI in a 10-0 rout of the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The 2010 N.L. MVP went 2-for-4 in Friday night’s matchup between the two clubs, including a game-tying homer in the eighth inning of an eventual 5-3 loss. Votto opened his stellar week with a 3-for-4 effort in a 6-2 victory over the Miami Marlins on Tuesday.
In addition to his three hits, the Canadian-born slugger drew a based-loaded walk that plated the Reds’ second run of the contest. Votto currently leads the Majors with a .473 on-base percentage, having reached base a Major League-best 98 times. His 37 walks are also the most in the Majors while his .349 average ranks second in the Senior Circuit. This is his third career weekly award, having previously won August 21-27, 2009 and, most recently, July 25-31, 2011.
Reds lineup vs. Mets
Robinson 8 Choo 8
gets a night off. Choo is a .222 (2-for-9, 5 strikeouts) lifetime vs. Mets starter Shaun Marcum. UPDATE: Choo is starting.
*It appears Zack Cozart is getting another day after being sick on Sunday.
UPDATE: Cozart says he feels better but still dealing with dehydration. Getting the extra day to build his strength. He spent all of Sunday quarantined in the trainer’s room.
*Joey Votto has even better chance to stay hot at the plate tonight. He is 5-for-9 (.556) lifetime vs. Marcum.
The Reds felt the elation of back-to-back homers to win a game in walk-off fashion earlier this month — on May 7 vs. the Braves — when Devin Mesoraco and Shin-Soo Choo took closer Craig Kimbrel deep for a win at GABP.
Now they know how the other half live. Aroldis Chapman gave up back-to-back home runs to Erik Kratz and Freddy Galvis for a 3-2 Reds loss to the Phillies on Sunday.
“Rarely do you see back-to-back homers [to end a game],” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “We were thinking Galvis has power from the left side. We were thinking Kratz was really the only guy that could hurt you at the bottom of the order. I guess it shows that anybody with a bat is dangerous. That’s a tough one to lose.”
Kratz said he was ready for whatever Chapman was bringing.
“I look forward for the chance to face anybody,” Kratz said. “We’ve done a good job in this series of coming in against their bullpen and tacking on runs or adding to runs and I think any time we’ve been faced with a challenge like that as a team, we’ve stepped up. He’s just another example of that. So yeah, you definitely look forward to facing somebody who’s going to come after you and he definitely did.”
That’s back-to-back blown saves for Chapman after he notched eight in a row to start the season. Add to that the three runs and four hits he gave up to the Cubs in a non-save situation on May 3.
Could this be the start of a funk? You remember June of last season? That month he had a 6.97 ERA with one loss and three blown saves, including back-to-back blown saves. After that, he went back to invincible mode and blew only one more save the rest of the season and saved 38 overall.
Something to keep any eye on perhaps…
“I don’t see any problem,” Chapman said through translator Tomas Vera. “I’ve been hit. Everybody gets hit, why not me? I’m going to get hit as well.”
Much more on this finale will be posted on MLB.com shortly. Click here to read. It includes a stroll down memory lane at Citizens Bank Park that isn’t very pleasant. The Reds haven’t won a series here since 2006.
*With six of the nine games of the road trip complete, the Reds rotation is 3-0 with a 1.44 ERA.
*The pitching staff had a stretch of 16 scoreless innings against the Phillies, which ended in the eighth when Sean Marshall gave up a two-out single to his first batter Chase Utley.
*Jay Bruce remains on fire. Leading off the top of the second inning against Jonathan Pettibone, Bruce hit a 2-1 pitch for a home run to center field. His fifth homer of the season, it extended his season-high hitting streak to 10 games and 15 of the last 16 games. Bruce is 16-for-41 (.390) during the streak with four homers and 12 RBIs.
*Joey Votto had two more hits to extend his hitting streak to eight. Votto’s double play in the third ended a streak of eight-straight plate appearances where he reached safely.
Reds lineup vs. Phillies
Cozart 6 Izturis 6
*Zack Cozart was scratched because he is sick today.
UPDATE: Reds made the move official and announced that Cingrani was optioned to Louisville.
A Reds roster move has yet to be announced but 3B/1B Neftali Soto is in the clubhouse on Saturday. He has been called up from Triple-A Louisville.
Soto is batting .269/.310/.388 with three homers and 16 RBIs in 33 games. He has played 18 games at first base but has been developing his skills as a third baseman, where he’s played 16 games.
I will have more with Soto later. To read my MLB.com notebook on him, click here.
Soto will wear No. 50.
With LHP Tony Cingrani not getting another turn in the rotation after pitching Friday, he is likely to be optioned to Louisville.
It was a mostly impressive six starts in the Majors for Cingrani, who was 2-0 with a 3.27 ERA, nine walks and 41 strikeouts.
Reds lineup vs. Phillies
The Reds have listed Mike Leake as their probable starter for Tuesday’s game vs. the Mets, with Mat Latos taking Wednesday’s finale and facing off against Matt Harvey.
That would seem to indicate that tonight could be Tony Cingrani’s last start in the Majors for a little while.
Johnny Cueto is coming off of the DL and pitching on Monday at New York, with Leake now stationed between him and Latos. There was no specific effort to split up Cueto and Latos in the order.
“It’s when Johnny was ready and we had to re-tweak the rotation as it was because of Cingrani needing the extra day,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “That kind of changed everything. A lot of times you have a reason but this is for no particular reason. [Monday] is Johnny’s day to pitch.”
During my off days, I saw the the quotes from Baker that he never viewed the situation as Leake vs. Cingrani, and said that Leake wasn’t pitching for his job. But Leake certainly helped his own cause by posting a 2.79 ERA in his last three starts since that three-inning bad outing.