Saturday, June 30, 2012

Latos Shines in Complete Game Win

Latos pitches gem!
After a very rough start against the Cleveland Indians two weeks ago by Mat Latos, many Reds fans were blasting him and the organization's trade that brought him over from the Padres. Fast forward a mere 12 days later and things have changed. He followed a complete game 13-strike out performance on Monday with another gem on Saturday. He went the distance again while allowing only two hits and one run with seven strike outs. His mighty effort helped the Reds (43-34) edge out the host Giants (44-35), 2-1, at AT&T Park.

Here is a look at the Good, Bad, and Notables from today's game:

A Q&A with Reds prospect Travis Mattair


Travis "Moose" Mattair. Once a minor league player in the Phillies organization (2007-2011), he's now a minor league player in the Cincinnati Reds organization (2012) with Single-A Bakersfield. He plays 3B for the Blaze and is currently hitting .261 with 11 HR and 42 RBI.

Recently, we here at Redlegs Review had the pleasure to interview Travis Mattair and find out a little more about the young third baseman. Here's a look at the interview:

Votto leads roster for second annual Redlegs Review NL All-Star team

 

Believe it or not, the midway point of the 2012 season and subsequent All-Star break are just around the corner. In preparation for this momentous occasion, Major League Baseball is all set to unveil the rosters for both the American and National Leagues for the 83rd annual All-Star Game on Sunday. We thought it would be fun if we beat them to the punch and created a legitimate roster of our own first.

I asked the RR crew to compile a roster made up of the 34 most-deserving players to represent the NL in the upcoming Midsummer Classic. After a bit of bickering, a hint of lobbying, and some occasional bribing, here's the team we arrived at.

The 2nd Annual Redlegs Review National League All-Star Team:

Giants hopes of raising Cain spoiled as Bruce, Reds use Leake


The Reds (42-34) entered Friday's tilt against the Giants (44-34) at AT&T Park badly in need of a win. The club was coming of a stretch of seven losses in 10 games which included being shutout with only one hit on Thursday. And is if their recent run of futility wasn't reason enough to panic, their division lead over the upstart Pirates had dwindled to one. Luckily, the boys from the Queen City prevailed victorious as they jumped all over SF ace Matt Cain early to propel themselves past the home squad by a tally of 5-1.

Mike Leake went the distance and added a pair of hits to help lift his season record to 3-5. Meanwhile, the offensive charge was led by none other than the club's two biggest bats in Jay Bruce and Joey Votto. The dynamic pair of left-handed sticks combined to rip seven hits and account for all but one of the Reds' runs.

And now for the good, the bad and the notables from Friday's funktastic affair on the West Coast:

Friday, June 29, 2012

MINOR details 6/28/12: Henry Rodriguez returns

Rodriguez returned from injury in a rehab post with the AZL Reds.
Buffalo 4 Louisville 2
Bats (31-51), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Sean Gallagher (L 6-5, 5.20) took the loss, allowing three earned runs in four innings. Kanekoa Texeira tossed 1.2 perfect innings. Jordan Smith threw a scoreless inning.
-2B Kris Negron had a hit and an RBI. 3B Mike Costanzo doubled and drove in a run. PH-LF Willie Harris went 2-2.

Reds prospect Tony Cingrani pegged as one of ten prospects on fast track to majors



There was once a time in the Cincinnati Reds organization when quality arms were few and far between. That time was pretty recent actually, and there wasn't much in the proverbial cupboard by way of pitching. Fortunately, that's all changed now thanks to great drafts, great signings and outstanding scouting. The Reds have stock-piled talented pitchers from top-to-bottom and there's one in particular that's rising fast through the ranks: LHP Tony Cingrani.

He was recently promoted from Single-A Bakersfield to Double-A Pensacola and looks to be on the fast track to the major leagues. He was recently featured in this ESPN Insider article as one of ten prospects experiencing meteoric rises to the big show. Here's the excerpt on Cingrani:

Giants use one-hitter to stomp Reds

Hanigan recorded the Reds' only hit off Bumgarner.
The West Coast never seems to be nice when the Redlegs visit, and Thursday evening turned into a very unfriendly welcome. The Reds (41-34) and Giants (44-33) met up as Cincinnati began an 11-game road trip on the left coast. San Francisco won 5-0. Johnny Cueto (L 9-4, 2.26) struggled with command a bit, but still ended up with a quality start. The problem is that he was overshadowed by Madison Bumgarner (W 10-4, 2.85) who threw a complete-game shutout as it was all the Reds could do to even manage one hit.

Here’s the good, the bad, and the notables:

Three Reds named to Keith Law's 'real' All-Star roster


The ability for the fan's to pick the starters for the Midsummer Classic can often turn into a popularity contest. Well, in an effort to compile a more educated and fair team, Keith Law of ESPN Insider put together a roster full of "real" All-Stars on Thursday afternoon. It encompassed who he believed were the 25 most-deserving players in Major League Baseball with no regard to popularity or seniority.

Not shockingly, Joey Votto was on there, but so were two of his teammates including closer Aroldis Chapman and setup man Sean Marshall. It gave the Reds a total of THREE representatives on the squad, which tied them with the Atlanta Braves for the most players from one club. That means Reds players make up 12% of Law's roster while Cincinnati in and of itself composes just 3% of the entire league (30 MLB clubs...1/30 equals roughly 3%).

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Cincinnati Reds Updates -- June 28th 2012



Topics include...
- Aroldis Chapman's recent struggles
- The return of Scott Rolen and Drew Stubbs
- The upcoming 11-game, 3-city, West Coast road trip
- Possible deals at trade deadline & more

MINOR details 6/27/12: Cingrani strikes out 15

Cingrani had himself a ballgame last night.
Bats (31-50), Last place International League West, 18.0 GB
-Pedro Villarreal (L 2-5, 4.48) gave up six earned runs in 4.1 innings. Travis Webb and Nick Christiani each struck out two, pitching one scoreless inning a piece.
-CF Joey Gathright was 3-4, with a double, two RBI, and a run scored. C Dioner Navarro drove in a run, in a 2-4 performance. 1B Danny Dorn had two hits, including a double and an RBI.

Blue Wahoos (38-38, 4-3), T-1st place Southern League South, --- GB

Happy birthday to Brandon Phillips!




Everyone here at Redlegs Review would like to extend a sincere happy birthday to the one and only Brandon Phillips. The defensive wizard turns 31 on this 28th day of June.

@DatDudeBP is rewarding the Reds franchise with another fine season after the team inked him to a 5-year contract extension in April. The Georgia native is currently hitting .287/.329/.452 with 10 homers, 45 RBI and 40 runs scored. He leads all MLB second basmen in RBI and ranks third among NL second basemen in homers, runs, average and OPS. He's well on his way to a third straight trip to the All-Star Game and fourth career Gold Glove Award by season's end.

Be sure to tune in and watch the birthday boy and the Reds as they take on the Giants in San Francisco tonight starting at 10:15et.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Video: Nyjer Morgan shares heated exchange with fan over foul ball


Brewers outfielder Nyjer Morgan, aka "@TheRealTPlush" on Twitter, was a bit of a real jerk during the ninth inning of Wednesday's matinee against the Reds. Seen above is the notoriously, hot-headed Morgan reacting rather poorly toward a Reds fan after failing to corral a foul ball that landed in the stands. At that point, the Brewers had the game well in hand and were just a mere two outs away from securing the 8-4 victory.

However, I can see why TPlush wanted to get out of Cincinnati so fast after collecting just one hit in 10 at-bats during the series. If that wasn't the reason, perhaps having lost to the Redlegs four out of six times this year is to blame as well. Either way, I doubt anyone in the Queen City will be buying Morgan's dinner anytime soon. Stay classy, Nyjer...stay classy.

Brewers sink Reds' sweep hopes, take series finale


Ryan Ludwick was one of the lone bright spots Wednesday.

The Reds went for the brooms to sweep away the Milwaukee Brewers in a matinee at GABP Wednesday afternoon, but fell behind early and could never mount a rally and will be forced to settle for two out of three. Cincinnati remains eight games over .500 at 41-33. To the details….

MINOR details 6/26/12: Nine is fine! Bats win again

It was a ninth straight win for the Bats.
Bats (31-49), Last place International League West, 17.0 GB
-Nine in a row! Tim Gustafson started and threw four innings of two-run baseball. J.J. Hoover (W 1-0, 1.64) got the win with a perfect inning. Donnie Joseph closed the game for his third save.
-CF Joey Gathright, 1B Danny Dorn, and Gustafson each collected an RBI. LF Felix Perez went 4-5, with two doubles and a run scored. RF Bill Rhinehart was 2-4, with a double and two RBI.

Blue Wahoos (37-37, 3-3), T-2nd place Southern League South, 1.0 GB

Votto takes over top spot in latest voting update, Phillips needs help



Go ahead and pencil Joey Votto in as a starter for the National League in the upcoming All-Star Game. The last update on balloting results was released on Tuesday, and Votto not only held a huge lead among NL first basemen, but he overtook LA's Matt Kemp as the league's leading vote-getter as well. The Canadian slugger has garnered nearly 4.5 million votes thus far, trailing only former Red and current Texas Ranger Josh Hamilton (7.3MM) for the most among all MLB players.

The only other Red in position to possibly earn a starting nod in the Midsummer Classic is Brandon Phillips. He trails Atlanta's Dan Uggla by about 700,000 votes and will we need a huge push by fans if he's to leapfrog Uggla for the top spot before Thursday's deadline.

Jay Bruce ranked 14th among NL outfielders with close to 1.2 million tallies to his name.

Here's a look at how Votto, Phillips and Bruce compared to their counterparts:

Redlegs win a drama-filled one over the Brew Crew, 4-3


Tuesday's affair between the Brewers (33-41) and Redlegs (41-32) saw no shortage of drama at GABP. Bronson Arroyo took a no-hit bid into the eighth inning only to have it, and a 3-run lead, slip away in a matter of minutes. Luckily, Drew Stubbs delivered a solo homer in the bottom half of the inning to put the Reds on top for good, 4-3. Aroldis Chapman recorded his ninth save of the season after striking out the side in the ninth to preserve the victory.

Here's a full look at the good, the bad and the notables:

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Video: Chapman stops, drops and rolls



I'm not sure what compelled Aroldis Chapman to celebrate in this way after nailing down the win Tuesday night, but I do know the folks at the local fire department are applauding his efforts. Chapman did a great demostration of the ole' "stop, drop and roll" routine they teach you as a kid. A tip of the cap to The Cuban Missile for blending safety awareness with post-game celebration. 

MINOR details 6/25/12: Eight straight for Bats

The Bats are riding a season-high, eight-game winning streak.
Bats (30-49), Last place International League West, 18.0 GB
-The Bats made it eight wins in a row. Chad Reineke (W 3-5, 4.19) tossed 6.2 innings of three-run baseball. Nick Christiani threw a scoreless inning. Jordan Smith got the save (10) with 1.1 perfect innings.
-CF Joey Gathright drove in one run. LF Cody Puckett hit a solo home run (2). RF Felix Perez went 3-4, with a double, a solo shot (3), and two runs scored. SS Miguel Rojas was 3-4, with a double, two RBI, and a run.

Is karma to blame for Aroldis Chapman's recent woes?

The going has been tough lately for no. 54

"What goes around comes around." "You reap what you sew." "You get what you deserve."

These are all ways to express a belief held by many that karma really does exist. Good deeds and actions breed future good, while bad ones breed, well you know the rest.

Given the adversity that Aroldis Chapman has been dealt with lately, one has to wonder if his transgressions have anything to do with his current poor performance on the mound. The left-hander has gone from virtually unhittable during the first two months of the season, to getting knocked around like a pinata over the last two weeks.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Latos goes the distance as Reds edge out Brewers


Do you remember when the Reds traded for Mat Latos during the offseason? And do you remember when people said that pitching in Great American Ball Park would be problematic for the tall right-hander? Well, those folks may have to change their theory after Latos won yet again at home on Monday night.

Cincy (40-32) edged out rival Milwaukee (33-40), 3-1, behind a dominanting, complete-game performance by Latos. It marked the sixth victory of 2012 for him (all at GABP) and marked the fifth straight time the Reds have won when Latos makes the start at home.

Here's a recap of the good, bad and notables from the affair:

Reds Racing Night at GABP



Reds fans and racing enthusiasts should come to the ballpark on Monday, June 25 for an evening of excitement at the inaugural Reds Racing Night presented by Kroger.

Kick off racing week in Cincinnati with “The King” Richard Petty, NASCAR drivers Bobby Labonte and Aric Almirola and the largest collection of racing showcars, simulators and interactives ever in the Ohio/Kentucky area.

Reds Racing Night schedule of events:

Can Joey Votto honestly break the all-time single-season doubles record?


   


Joey Votto is entering baseball territory that hasn't been journeyed upon in over 80 years. The 2010 NL MVP is smacking doubles at an alarming rate and is well on his way in threatening to rewrite the record books. He leads all major league hitters with 30 doubles in 2012 and is on pace to shatter the single-season record set by Earl Webb, who slapped 67 two-baggers for the Boston Red Sox back in 1931. Votto is on par to hit 71. But the question that remains to be seen is this: can he?

As Dave Cameron of FanGraphs and ESPN Insider estutley points out, Votto may have the best shot of any modern day hitter for several reasons. Here are the factors presented by Cameron that play into the likelihood that Votto can indeed break the record:

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Reds Lose to Twins 4-3

This picture pretty much summarizes the past week

After a great outing by Mike Leake and 8th inning heroics by Joey Votto, the Reds (39-32) lost to the Twins (29-42) on a two run Willingham homer in the 9th. Mike Leake got a hit, a sacrifice and pitched 8 innings of 2 run baseball, striking out five and walking zero. His ERA comes down to 4.46, and his batting average improved to .333. But that wasn't enough for the Reds to finish up Interleague play with a win.

Video: Casey, Driessen give induction speech



Modern first basemen Dan Driessen and Sean Casey, along with the late John Reilly were inducted into the Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame on Saturday. Here's a video of Driessen and Casey giving their speeches. Needless to say, the energetic and upbeat Casey nearly brought down the house with his.

Law: Billy Hamilton 'one to watch' in Futures Game

Billy Hamilton is so fast, he makes fast
people look...not fast

Major League Baseball released the rosters for the 14th annual Futures Game on Thursday and there were two Reds prospects who made the cut: Single-A Bakersfield SS Billy Hamilton and Double-A Pensacola RHP Kyle Lotzkar.

Hamilton made the grade for the United States roster while Lotzkar, a native of Canada, will represent the World team, much like current star and fellow Canadian Joey Votto did in 2006.

ESPN Insider Keith Law tabbed Hamilton as one of 'five guys most likely to do something awesome' in his recent column highlighting the event. Check out this excerpt on the switch-hitting speedster:

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Video: Phillips throws out speedy runner, without the use of a glove



Minnesota's Ben Revere is among the fastest players in Major League Baseball right now. No, we're not talking Billy Hamilton fast, but the Lexington, Kentucky native does have speed to burn. But his speed was no match for the defensive wizard known as Brandon Phillips on Saturday.

Watch as the 3-time Glove Glover guns down Revere after coralling the bouncing ball with his barehand and then rifling it over to first to collect the out...all without the use of his glove, may I point it.

Yes, just another day in the life of @DatDudeBP -- where appearances on Baseball Tonight's Web Gems and SportsCenter's Top Play are the norm.

Cueto silences Twins as Reds snap season high losing skid at four

Sean "The Mayor" Casey firing up the crowd beforehand

The Reds entered Saturday's contest with the lowly Minnesota Twins badly in need of a victory. Their lead in the National League Central had dwindled down to one game after suffering a string of four consecutive defeats. The main responsibility to help turn things around fell on the shoulders of diminutive ace Johnny Cueto, and boy did he ever come through. The Reds (39-31) blanked the visiting Twins (28-42), 6-0, to help put an end to their skid on Reds Hall of Fame Induction night at Great American Ball Park.

To help put a bow on the festive weekend affair, here's the good, bad and notables from the festive affair:

Riverfront Stadium named as one of the worst baseball stadiums ever



Jim Caple of ESPN.com has been running a series of posts highlighting the best and worst ballparks of both modern times and all-time history this week. On Wednesday, he chose to tab 10 unfortunate parks as the worst baseball stadiums ever. To no surprise or shock of my own, Riverfront Stadium was included.

The now non-existent structure tied with two other similar-shaped parks (Veterans Stadium & Three Rivers Stadium) for 10th place on the dubious list. Here's what Caple had to say about them:

Friday, June 22, 2012

Reds Rally Falls Short - Losing Streak Hits 4


The Minnesota Twins came into town for the first time in 11 years and the first time ever in Great American Ballpark and edged out the hometown Reds, 5-4. The Redlegss had plenty of opportunities that they failed to convert, while the Twins were able take advantage of some mistakes. Homer Bailey pitched good enough to keep the Reds in the game but his inability to hold runners on base hurt the team tonight. Here is the Good, Bad, and Notables from tonight's game which opens the Hall of Fame weekend.

Reds acquire former first round pick from the Indians



There appears to be no hard feelings between the Reds and Indians after each club swept the other in their home parks over the last week. This is partly true because the two sides agreed to an alleged trade on Thursday, according to Paul Hoynes of The Plain Dealer.

Cincinnati is rumored to have received minor league first basemen Beau Mills in exchange for cash considerations, tweets Hoynes. The 25-year old is the son of former MLB player and current Houston Astros manager Brad Mills.

The left-handed batting, right-handed throwing Mills was the Indians' first round draft pick (13th overall) in 2007. He's spent the bulk of the last two seasons with the Columbus Clippers of the International League, which is the Triple-A affiliate of Cleveland.

Fox Sports Ohio to cover Saturday's induction ceremony


FOX Sports Ohio To Cover Reds Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony During Pregame On-Field Ceremony

Viewers are encouraged to tune in at 3pm for a special Reds Live pregame show on Saturday, June 23rd.  The Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame & Museum has an exciting weekend planned in celebration of the Reds Hall of Fame Class of 2012: Sean Casey, Dan Driessen and the late John Reilly.

The official induction of Casey, Driessen, and Reilly into the Reds Hall of Fame will take place at Great American Ball Park before the 4pm Cincinnati Reds – Minnesota Twins game this Saturday, June 23rd.

Promotions for upcoming homestand

Here's a look at the promotions for the upcoming 6-game homestand:
Drawstring Backpack

Fri. June 22nd @ 7:10et vs Twins
+ FREE BACKPACK: The first 20,000 fans through the gates receive a drawstring backpack, compliments of MLB Network.
+ FIREWORKS: A post-game fireworks show along with a soundtrack starts approximately 15 minutes after the end of the game. It's presented by Jeff Wyler Automotive Family.
+ FREE AGENT FRIDAYS: Start your weekends with happy hour drink specials, singles mixers and more at every Friday home game. Visit reds.com/FreeAgents for details.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Video of Wednesday's horrendous call



We all make mistakes, there's no question about that. But this blown call by second base umpire Jim Wolf during Wednesday's 8-1 defeat was just plain atrocious. Mr. Wolf, may I suggest getting an eye exam?

P.S. Zack Cozart fielded that ball cleanly, good sir. 

List of events and activities for Reds Hall of Fame induction weekend


From the Reds:

The Cincinnati Reds Hall of Fame & Museum has an exciting weekend planned to celebrate the Reds Hall of Fame Class of 2012: Sean Casey, Dan Driessen and the late John Reilly.

Fans can attend meet and greets with new inductees and returning Hall of Famers and alumni on Friday and Saturday at the museum. All meet and greet sessions are free with HOF & Museum admission. (Players subject to change)

MINOR details 6/20/12: At least the AZL Reds beat the AZL Indians

2012 second-round pick Tanner Rahier
hit his first pro homer in his debut.
Bats (25-49), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Chad Reineke struck out five and gave up three earned runs in 5.1 innings. Wirfin Obispo followed him with a scoreless inning. Bill Bray (W 1-0, 7.20) got the win with a hitless inning. Jordan Smith picked up the save (8) with a perfect inning.
-LF Felix Perez was 3-3, with two doubles, an RBI, and a run scored. C Corky Miller had a hit and two RBI. SS Miguel Rojas also drove in a run.

The chemistry behind making the league's top-ranked bullpen

Marshall has been highly effective since
moving back to a setup role
Needless to say, the Reds bullpen has been its biggest strength in 2012. Even with the season loss due to injury of projected closer Ryan Madson, coupled with the absences of Bill Bray and Nick Masset, the Cincinnati 'pen still reigns as one of the best in Major League Baseball. They lead all National League relief staffs in ERA (2.75), BAA (.210), WHIP (1.15), K/BB (2.97), SO/9 (10.30), and opponent OPS (.621). Simply put, Reds relievers have been mighty good this year.

Here's a look at the chemistry of the league's top bullpen, which includes where they played before pro ball, how they were acquired by the team, and their 2012 stats:

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Video: Home plate umpire trips, face plants into batter's box



It's not everyday you see a play at the plate. It's even more rare to see a play at the dish involving the home plate umpire. And no, I'm not talking about the masked official ruling a guy safe or out, I'm talking about real-live action here.

Such an incident occurred on Wednesday night during sixth inning of the Reds-Indians game at Progressive Field.

As the video clip above clearly indicates, home plate umpire Derryl Cousins got himself all tripped up when attempting to get a better look at a Zack Cozart foul ball. Things went from bad-to-worse when Cousins went face-first into the right-side of the batter's box, thus drawing some laughter from those with a sense of humor in attendance.

As humiliating as the tumble may have been, his ability to avoid getting any dirt or chalk on his black top is equally, if not more, impressive. Hats off to Cousins for saving the Tribe clubhouse manager some extra laundry detail. Nicely done.

Reds end Battle of Ohio on deflating note as Indians dominate, 8-1


This guy got the last laugh in the Battle of Ohio.

Just a week ago, the Reds seemed assured of taking back the Ohio Cup after dominating the Indians at GABP. That feels like years ago after Cleveland wrapped up a shellacking of their in-state rival with an 8-1 win on Wednesday.

After last night’s extra innings heart breaker, the Reds needed a bounce back at Progressive Field. What they got was the exact opposite as the Indians played long ball on their way to a dominating win.

Fox Sports Ohio scheduling change

Description: Description: cid:image003.jpg@01CD3F37.91DE5270

PROGRAMMING NOTE
FOX Sports Ohio Picks Up Reds-Brewers game on June 27 at 12:30pm

The July 14th Cincinnati Reds - St. Louis Cardinals game was recently selected for exclusive national broadcast, so it is no longer available to be part of FOX Sports Ohio’s Reds lineup.

As a make-up, please note that FOX Sports Ohio has picked up the Reds game at on Wednesday, June 27th at 12:30pm against the Milwaukee Brewers. The game will be preceded by Reds Live pregame show at 12 noon and followed by Reds Live postgame edition.

MINOR details 6/19/12: Robert Stephenson dazzles in his pro debut

On Tuesday night, Stephenson made
the Reds look smart for drafting him.
 Louisville 4 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2
Bats (24-49), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Ryan Feierabend gave up two earned runs in 5.2 innings. Scott Carroll tossed a scoreless innings. Donnie Joseph (W 1-0, 0.00) got his first AAA win with 1.1 scoreless innings. Jordan Smith got the save (7) with a perfect ninth.
-3B Mike Costanzo drove in a run. C Dioner Navarro smacked a solo home run (8) in the eighth inning. 2B Cody Puckett was 2-2, with a two-run homer (1).

Video: Arroyo, Chapman singing 'Red Hooded Sweatshirt'



Okay, so I know I may be a bit late to the party in posting this, but if you haven't seen it yet, you're welcome. Seen here are Bronson Arroyo and Aroldis Chapman (aka - The Cuban Missile) collaborating to create a hilarious musical piece entitled "Red Hooded Sweatshirt". The two took the time to shoot the footage during the Reds' trip to New York this past weekend...a trip that resulted in a sweep of the Mets!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Another day, another one-run loss for the Reds

Chapman is now 0-3 with two blown saves in
his previous seven outings

Tuesday's edition of the Battle of Ohio at Progressive Field unfolded much differently than Monday's 19-run, 27-hit slugfest. Instead of offense, stingy pitching was on full display by the Redlegs and Indians. However, the end result on Tuesday was just the same for the Reds (38-29) as they fell victim to another one-run defeat -- this time by a tally of 3-2 in 10 innings to the hands of the rival Indians (35-32).

Cleveland shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera stuck the proverbial dagger into the Redlegs with his walk-off, 2-run homer in the bottom of the 10th off closer Aroldis Chapman.

Let's have a look at the good, the bad and the notables from the rivalry bout:

Reds ratings soar on Fox Sports Ohio


Courtesy of the Director of Public Relations for Fox Sports Ohio, Kate Buddenhagen:

The Cincinnati Reds opened up a series with their crosstown rival Cleveland Indians last night and posted a 12.78 HH rating on FOX Sports Ohio. It was their highest rating since Opening Day!

The Reds have won 7 of their last 10 games and are averaging a 9.54 HH through 12 games in June.
After 58 games in the 2012 regular season, they are averaging an 8.42 HH rating, which is among the top 3 teams in MLB. (The Cardinals, Tigers, and Reds lead the pack, all averaging within 0.1 rating point of each other as of last Friday.) The Reds current 8.42 HH average is up 8% from the same number of games in 2011.

The Reds have a 3.5 game lead on the division and look to keep rolling both on and off the field as they look to even up the series tonight.

Yes, winning does have its way of stirring up excitement among fanbases. Let's hope the Reds can keep the good times rolling thru the Summer and into Fall.

Reds top prospects update: Billy Hamilton blazes into All-Star break

Could Hamilton be joining his former teammate, Tony
Cingrani, in Pensacola after the All-Star break?
The first half has come to a close for AA, High-A, and Low-A. Tony Cingrani was promoted to Pensacola, and while he hasn’t duplicated his dominating start with Bakersfield, he hasn’t tailed off that badly with a 1-1 record and 2.55 ERA through three starts with the Blue Wahoos.

Billy Hamilton is still blazing. He finished the first half with 80 stolen bases, while playing in 66 of Bakersfield's 70 games. That puts him on an absolutely ridiculous pace to steal something like 160 bases in 132 games played, though he'll probably end up playing a few more games than that barring injury. Perhaps a promotion is in order after play resumes following the All-Star break? 

Donnie Joseph got promoted to AAA Louisville after being virtually unhittable in Pensacola. He's literally been unhittable for the Bats, having allowed no hits in his first two appearances.

Here's the top prospects update. To see the previous update, go here. All stats are combined stats for every level at which the player has appeared.

#2 SS Billy Hamilton (A Bakersfield Blaze)

MINOR details 6/18/12: Bats win; Mustangs start season with loss

The Mustangs got their season
under way with an ugly loss.
Bats (23-49), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Sean Gallagher (W 5-4, 5.04) pitched five innings of two-run baseball for the win. Bill Bray struck out one in 1.1 innings of scoreless ball. Nick Christiani threw 1.2 scoreless innings, and Jordan Smith added one of his own.
-SS Paul Janish had two doubles, an RBI, and two runs scored. 3B Mike Costanzo had two hits and an RBI. 1B Danny Dorn recorded a hit and two RBI. RF Bill Rhinehart was 3-4, with a double, two RBI, and a run. 2B Cody Puckett also banged out three hits and drove in two runs.

Video: Did you see this?



Apparently there were spies at Sunday's series finale in New York. Okay, maybe they were just pigeons, but the trio of creatures did spend a longtime around Mets 3B David Wright. Perhaps they were undercover scouts for other teams determined to get a better look at the potential MVP candidate? Let's just hope we don't encounter any at GABP anytime soon.

Reds All-Star voting update




Joey Votto continues to pace all National League first basemen in fan voting for the 83rd Annual MLB All-Star Game. The league released an updated leaderboard on Monday in which revealed Votto holding a monumental lead at 1B over the next top vote-getter.

Votto currently leads the majors in average, doubles, on-base percentage, walks, WAR, and OPS.

Here's the most up-to-date tally in voting among NL first basemen:

Indians come out on top in a wild one in Cleveland, 10-9

Mat Latos' first career start in
Cleveland was one to forget

After getting swept last week in Cincinnati, Cleveland had revenge on their minds as they welcomed their instate rivals to Progressive Field on Monday. And given the recent bad blood between the two squads in last week's series (mainly Dusty Baker and Derek Lowe), one would've expected a slugfest at some point during the affair. And as fate would have it, it turns out we saw one, just not in the bench-clearing fashion we may have imagined. The host Indians (34-32) outslugged the Reds (38-28), 10-9, in a wild one in Northern Ohio, thus snapping the Redlegs' season-high 6-game winning streak.

Here's a recap of the good, bad and notables from Monday's interleague clash:

Monday, June 18, 2012

Battle of the Ballparks: Vote Reds!

Battle of the Ballparks bracket

Jim Caple of ESPN.com has come up with an interesting way of determining which major league stadium is the best. He's composed a tournament bracket filled with all 30 clubs and is letting the fans decide on who advances to the next round. The voting process takes place all week, with a winner being crowned on Friday.

Unfortunately, the Reds and 25th-seeded Great American Ball Park drew a tough first-round matchup against Los Angeles and 8th-seeded Dodger Stadium. It's going to be tough to pull off the upset against the historic venue located in the country's second-largest market, but it can be done.

You can do your part by following this link to the ballot and recording your vote for GABP. But hurry because voting for the first-round ends tonight at 11:59 PM ET. As of 6:00 PM ET, GABP trailed Dodger Stadium by a tally of 58% to 42%...which is certainly not insurmountable.

Just for the record, here is the criteria used for seeding the parks:

MINOR details 6/17/12: Three first halves come to a close

Bats (22-49), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Pedro Villarreal (L 2-4, 3.86) gave up six earned runs in six innings to suffer the loss. Wirfin Obispo and Travis Webb combined to toss a scoreless inning.
-3B Mike Costanzo and C Dioner Navarro both doubled and drove in a run, with Costanzo also scoring one of his own. DH Corky Miller was 1-2, with an RBI. 2B Cody Puckett also had an RBI.
*Saturday’s game - Louisville 11 Rochester 5

Notable quotes, notes from the weekend



Friday:
+ “I mean, you’re throwing a projectile 90-plus miles an hour. Evidently they were trying to throw him inside after he hit that ball to left center field, a pitch low and away. No, we didn’t think there was any intent. Every time somebody gets hit now, people think there’s intent. In the umpire’s opinion, if there had been, then he would have issued a warning.”
-Dusty Baker on Mets pitcher Dillon Gee hitting Joey Votto with a pitch during a 7-3 victory

+ “That’s the way you play the game. I know we didn’t hit Joey on purpose, but you take care of your guys. We would have done the same thing.”
-New York 3B David Wright after getting plunked himself in Friday's affair at Citi Field

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Cueto's Quality Start Allows Reds to Sweep Mets with a 3-1 Victory

'Johnny be good, Johnny be real good'

The Reds (38-27) met the Mets (35-32) in their last game of a three game series this Father's Day afternoon. Johnny Cueto not only had a great outing on the mound (7.0 IP, 6 H, 1 ER 1 BB, 8 SO) but also got the first multiple base hit of his career on a stand up double in the 3rd inning. Cueto continues to prove he's one of the best pitchers in the National League. Great pitching was a must, as the Reds offense only managed to score 3 runs and leaving 10 runners on base.

Video: Brandon Phillips goes between the legs to start twin killing



Brandon Phillips is a defensive wizard, a human highlight reel, and a walking web gem all rolled into one. The 3-time Gold Glove Award winner added yet another sparkling play to his resume during Sunday's series finale against the Mets.

Seen here is Phillips ranging to his right, making a back-handed stop and then proceeding to flip the ball between his legs to Zack Cozart to initiate a 4-6-3 double play.

If there's a better fielding second basemen in the game today, I don't know of them.  




And this one belongs to dads

Senior and Junior embrace after the latter nails his 500th
career homer on Father's Day in 2004
All of us here at Redlegs Review would like to extend a genuine Happy Father's Day to all the great dads out there. Although our mothers were likely the one who fed us, clothed us and nurtured us growing up, you were the one who taught us how to play catch and how to throw that perfect curve. We salute you for all that you do!

Treat yourself to a day of relaxation, peace, and quality time with the family. Oh, and don't forget to throw in some Reds afternoon baseball in there as well! Here's to the first-place Redlegs wrapping up their last day in the Big Apple on a good note.

Votto front runner for NL MVP honors



There's a clear-cut leader for National League MVP honors right now and he resides on the Cincinnati Reds. Who else could I be talking about other than Joey freakin' Votto? SI's Cliff Corcoran published his top five candidates for MVP honors on Friday, and Votto had the top spot locked down.

Here's what Corcoran had to say about the Reds first basemen:

1. Joey Votto, 1B, Reds (HM)
Season Stats: .362/.485/.657, 12 HR, 44 RBI
Last Three Weeks: .507/.575/.881, 5 HR, 16 RBI
(All stats prior to games played on 6/15)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Stacking up the Reds from rankings, records, and stats



Thanks in part to their current 4-game winning streak, Cincinnati continues to put some space between themselves and all other teams in the NL Central Division standings. When you do that, you're likely to also put yourself among the league's elite group of teams. If you go by winning percentage alone, Dusty Baker's boys are the third-best team in the league, and sixth overall in MLB at 36-27 (.571).

The Reds ranked 9th in ESPN's latest MLB Power Rankings (released on 6/11), 8th in CBS Sports' (released on 6/13), and 14th (???) in Fox Sports' (released on 6/12).

MINOR details 6/15/12: Rolen and Bray make rehab appearances for Bats

Rolen will be back in red soon.
Bats (21-48), Last place International League West, 19.0 GB
-Chad Reineke (L 2-5, 4.14) went seven innings and allowed just two earned runs, but still took the loss. Bill Bray had a rough rehab outing, giving up two earned runs in just 2/3 of an inning. Donnie Joseph pitched a scoreless inning with two strikeouts.
-3B Scott Rolen went 1-3 in his first game of his rehab. C Dioner Navarro had two hits and drove in the lone run.

On this date in Reds history: Seaver throws a no-no and Soto goes loco



Both accounts are courtesy of excerpts taken from Redleg Journal:

June 16, 1978 - Tom Seaver pitches the only no-hitter of his career in a 4-0 Reds win over St. Louis at Riverfront Stadium. Previously, Seaver had entered the ninth inning with a no-hitter three times, and surrendered a base hit on each occasion. In this game in the ninth, he walked Jerry Mumphrey leading off, induced Lou Brock to fly out to left field, retired Gerry Templeton on a force out, and ended the game on a weak grounder by George Hendrick to Dan Driessen at first base. Seaver walked three and struck out three.