Friday, Aug 24, 2012, 7:10 PM EDT
Great American Ball Park
TV: MLB Network (Subject to blackout), FSO-HD, FSMW-HD; RADIO: WLW, KMOX; WEB: MLB.tv, Gameday Audio, Gameday
Mostly clear. Winds blowing in from right field at 5-10 m.p.h. Game time temperature around 90.
This series didn't look quite as critical about a week a go, when it was the Pirates in second place. But last night should have been a little humbling for the Reds. So should the fact that a sweep this weekend would reduce their lead to 4.0 games. That would be far, far from the end of the world, but it somehow sounds like a lot less than 7.
If the games this weekend are close and the division lead shrinks, marginal details will start to matter more. I think it's pretty clear that most managers misuse their bullpens and rely to heavily on textbook roles, but that doesn't make it any more frustrating. There are a few things I don't think Dusty has acknowledged that, if ignored, have the potential to hurt the team in a closer race (and in the playoffs):
- Sean Marshall is the second-best reliever on the team
- Sam LeCure shouldn't pitch in high-leverage situations
- Miguel Cairo shouldn't be starting at 1B every three days on a contending team.
In any case, the Reds are still in great shape. They could be in greatest shape by Sunday. There isn't a better backdrop for ecstasy than at home against the Cardinals.
||ERA (ERA+)||3.73 (104)
|Reliever||8/19||8/20||8/21||8/22||8/23||5 day totals|
|Aroldis Chapman||1.0, 9p||1.0, 10p||1.0, 20p||4.0 IP, 55 pitches
|Sean Marshall||0.2, 16p||0.2, 15p
||1.1 IP, 31 pitches
|Jonathan Broxton||1.0, 17p||1.0 IP, 17 pitches|
|Jose Arredondo||1.0, 18p||1.2, 29p
||2.2 IP, 47 pitches|
|Sam LeCure||0.2, 18p||0.2, 16p
||1.1 IP, 44 pitches|
|1.0 (AAA)||2.0, 37p
|Alfredo Simon||0.1, 16p
||0.1 IP, 16 pitches|