The Cincinnati Reds play host the Chicago White Sox again on Sunday, and will do so with Graham Ashcraft on the mound as they look to clinch the series victory. That’s a good thing! Graham has been hands down the best pitcher and player of any variety on the Reds roster so far this year, his hard cutter and proclivity for inducing groundouts keeping the Reds on the front-foot in each of his starts.
Offensively, well, they’re taking something of a different approach.
Of the 161 players who have logged at least 900 PA at the big league level since the start of the 2020 season, Kevin Newman owns the single lowest wRC+ (66) and wOBA (.267). Against Michael Kopech today, Newman will serve as the Reds designated hitter and, perhaps unsurprisingly given the previous context, not hit 9th. That spot will be reserved for Jose Barrero, who while struggling in his own right at the plate owns a 63 OPS+ this year that tops that of Newman (48).
Matt McLain, Christian Encarnacion-Strand, and Elly De La Cruz all remain in AAA Louisville.
The Cincinnati Reds are 14-19 on the season.
First pitch on Sunday is set for 4:10 PM ET.
Go Reds, regardless of the decision making.