Cincinnati Reds: Anthony DeSclafani’s poor start was an anomaly

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - AUGUST 08: Anthony DeSclafani #28 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches in the second inning (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - AUGUST 08: Anthony DeSclafani #28 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches in the second inning (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

Don’t fret too much over Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani’s poor showing.

Anthony DeSclafani went just two innings on Thursday night, and some Cincinnati Reds fans wish he’d only gone one. DeSclafani allowed nine runs on nine hits while walking two and only struck out one batter. Don’t read too much into this debacle from DeSclafani, as this terrible outing will be a distant memory by next week.

You don’t need to rub Anthony DeSclafani’s nose into it, as he would probably be the first person to tell you how terrible his performance was on Thursday night. Adam Frazier wasted little time, as the Pirates leadoff hitter jumped on the second pitch he saw and launched into into the seats. That was the first home run Disco had surrendered on the season.

It wouldn’t be the last, as cleanup hitter Collin Moran took DeSclafani deep as well, giving the Pittsburgh Pirates a 2-0 lead after the first inning. But a 2-0 disadvantage is nothing this stacked Cincinnati Reds offense can’t overcome, right?

Well, the Pirates put this game out of reach in the second inning by sending 12 batters to the plate and racking up seven runs. Anthony DeSclafani was lifted from the game in favor of Cody Reed after giving up a career-high nine runs, all of them earned.

Now, for the small contingent of fans who are distraught because Reds manager David Bell left Disco in the game, take a deep breath. The night before, an abbreviated outing from Wade Miley caused Bell to use both Tyler Mahle and Tejay Antone. Mahle went 3.1 innings and Antone followed with two innings of his own.

Amir Garrett and Nate Jones we’re gassed as well, as both pitchers had come in the two previous games versus the Kansas City Royals. There wasn’t much to choose from, but Bell made the call in the third inning, with both Cody Reed, followed by Michael Lorenzen, putting together a combined effort of six scoreless innings.

Was Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani tipping pitches?

But, back to Anthony DeSclafani. He was the only Reds starter who hadn’t given up a run coming into last night’s game. That stat was erased quickly, as his 0.00 ERA ballooned to 6.23. However, there seems to be a feeling that Disco was tipping his pitches. Here’s what Tucker Barnhart had to say on the subject via Mark Sheldon of

"“We caught a little bit of a tip that he was tipping,. I’d rather not say exactly what it was, but we caught a tip that he was tipping, so we feel like, for the most part, that we caught it. Obviously, a little bit too late.”"

For those who are unaware, when a pitcher is inadvertently signaling to the hitter what pitch is coming next, it’s referred to as tipping pitches. If Anthony DeSclafani was tipping his pitches, kudos to the Pirates hitters for picking up on it. Hopefully that snafu will be rectified during Disco’s next outing.

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Anthony DeSclafani is not as bad as his performance on Thursday night suggests. However, he’s not as good as his 0.00 ERA leading into last night’s game would have you believe either. Disco is middle-of-the-rotation starter who’ll be itching to get back on the mound next week.