What a difference a day makes. On Monday the Reds scored nine runs on five hits and a bunch of walks and errors in the ninth inning. On Tuesday they score one run on five hits and go to the dugout shaking their heads 14 times, 10 by starter Lance Lynn in the first five innings.
Five Reds’ batters were fanned twice each. Lynn made it look so easy that it did not even resemble the team that thumped the Redbirds 13-4 the night before.
It is a long season and I totally get that. Players hit and don’t hit, I get that as well. Strategies are something of a different nature however.
Anybody who has witnessed Bronson Arroyo on the mound for as long as Dusty Baker has, knows when he loses it, it happens quickly. He was pitching a perfect game through five innings last night then the Dutch boy pulled his finger out and the flood waters began.
Okay smart guy, what is your answer? After Arroyo gave up the double to Daniel Descalso and the long home run by Matt Adams, with a fielder’s choice sandwiched between them, I would have sent him to the showers. Perfect game gone, no-hitter gone, shutout gone, what was left to shoot for? I could cite you an endless array of instances where Arroyo went from bad to worse.
Another strategic move I would second guess is the starting of Derrick Robinson in left field. Chris Heisey isn’t hitting and I see that. Okay if you wish to platoon him, what is wrong with Xavier Paul being your left handed man? He earned his stripes last season, did he not? I can see using Robinson as a pinch hitter, pinch runner, defensive replacement or whatever. But starting when nobody is hurt, no thank you.
I know many people do not like to read about anything less than positive about the Reds, or Baker for that matter. There is nothing heretical about some objective criticisms. I will praise them when praise is due, I will mean mouth them when I feel the need. I have second-guessed Baker throughout his stay in the Queen City. Why would he pitch J.J. Hoover over and over and over again? Big strong arms out there, let us use them.
If he really likes Robinson, he being a switch-hitter should be starting all the games since Heisey has shown once again, he is a bench player. I still believe Paul should be platooned with Heisey.
As a side note I believe the Cardinals would do anything to gain an advantage. Last night the Reds communication line between the dugout and the bullpen was having a wardrobe malfunction courtesy of Busch Stadium. Brings to remembrance the storm warning Tony LaRussa kept to himself a couple years ago.
It will be a long hot season, there will, unfortunately be much more to complain about as we go along. God bless us everyone.
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