The Reds wrap up the first half of the season (observed) this afternoon against the San Diego Padres. Johnny Cueto, in perhaps his most discussed start of the season (thanks in no small part to Tony La Russa), will take the mound against Jason Marquis (Editor’s note: he’s still pitching? Jeff Suppan is even surprised by this!). If successful, the Reds will clinch a winning left coast trip on its last day and Cueto will get his tenth win of the season.
Speaking of last days, this will also be the last opportunity for the other Reds All Star snub, Brandon Phillips, to show that TLR;DR was incredibly dumb not to pick him and instead go with a 24-outfielder rotation. La Russa’s throwing of the All Star Game notwithstanding (which will, almost definitely, result in a National League team other than the Cardinals losing home field advantage), the Reds have other reasons why a win today will be valuable before the break. As they currently stand, the Reds are currently one game behind the Pirates and only a game and a half up on the aforementioned Cardinals. If the Reds can’t tie for first today, they need to at least keep pace with the Pirates before Pittsburgh trades half their farm system for someone that will only OPS .750.
In keeping consistent with their religious framework, the Fathers will start Jason Marquis this afternoon on three days rest (MESSIAH STYLE, for you In-N-Out aficionados). Of course, the more theologically aware of us will point out that Marquis’ age, 33, is the same as Jesus’ when he died on the cross. So, does that make Jason Marquis the Christ? Does that make him the Anti-Christ? Does that make him an old pitcher in a non-hitter’s park who still has an ERA approaching 6? As long as the Reds can eek out a W, we probably won’t care about the correct answer.
GO REDS! BECAUSE WE WON’T BE ABLE TO ROOT FOR THEM UNTIL THURSDAY!*
*Except in their individual capacities.