by Steve Mancuso

RC+ Preview: Reds vs. Pirates (July 30) – Reds go for four in a row

Don’t look now, but our Cincinnati Reds (49-55) have won three games in a row. Well, OK, go ahead and look while it’s fun. The Reds are also one victory away from their third series win in a row. Somehow, they are just 6.5 games out of first place. FanGraphs quantifies the team’s playoff odds as 4.8%. That’s practically a certainty, right? The Reds have opened up a 4-game lead over Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates (love typing that), hold on …

Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates, Clint Hurdle’s last-place Pirates.

… that was fun.

The two teams play again tonight at Great American Ball Park against a backdrop of the trade deadline.

Feel free to discuss the game in the comments as it goes on. We’ll be around to chat!

Pitching Matchup

Even matchup. Both pitchers are right around league average.

Tanner Roark continues to have a solid season. He gives up a lot of fly balls, so a little bit of luck on home runs (his HR/FB rate is below average) has helped keep his ERA below 4.00 and looking good. But the metrics to pay attention to (xFIP and SIERA) point to Roark being a resident of Average City. His xwOBA points even a little bit higher.

Keep an eye out for hugs.

Joe Musgrove is the definition of average. His fastball velocity is right around swing speed. He’s also had a little bit of luck on HR/FB keeping his ERA down about a quarter of a run.

Batting Order

David Bell is going with a more balanced lineup tonight. Jesse Winker and Joey Votto lead off again. Nick Senzel is back, batting sixth after Scooter Gennett for some reason. Hopefully that’s just naked trade value boosting. Senzel does have an 86/164 split, but Gennett is just 47 wRC+ against RH pitchers.

Clint Hurdle, who manages the last-place Pirates, shuffled his lineup around and has Corey Dickerson (groin) playing LF.

[Graphic: Baseball Press]

Pirates Hitter Stats

Reds Hitter Stats

[Graphics: Baseball Savant]

Steve Mancuso is a lifelong Reds fan who grew up during the Big Red Machine era. He’s been writing about the Reds for more than ten years. Steve’s fondest memories about the Reds include attending a couple 1975 World Series games, being at Homer Bailey’s second no-hitter and going nuts for Jay Bruce at Clinchmas. Steve was also at all three games of the 2012 NLDS, but it’s too soon to talk about that.

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Michael R Hessenauer
Michael R Hessenauer
1 year ago

Thank you very much for your alerts! Is it possible to receive these via email, as it used to be on Patreon?

Thanks!

The Hessenauer Corporation

Thank you very much, Steve!