Reds vs Cubs: Preview, pitching matchups and prediction

CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 29: Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 29: Nick Castellanos #2 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Jose Garcia #83 of the Cincinnati Reds follows through on a swing.
GOODYEAR, ARIZONA – FEBRUARY 28: Jose Garcia #83 of the Cincinnati Reds follows through on a swing. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /

Recent roster moves hope to provide a spark for the Reds.

Things have seemed to have come to a head regarding the Cincinnati Reds roster. Over the last week, relievers Cody Reed and Pedro Strop have been designated for assignment while outfielder Travis Jankowski has been optioned to the taxi squad in Mason, Ohio. Let’s hope these moves are not a case of too little, too late.

Two Reds made their MLB debut over the past week as outfielder Mark Payton and shortstop José García saw their dreams come true. Payton, a 28-year-old left-handed hitter, was acquired for a second time by the Reds in less than a year in a trade with the Oakland A’s. It appears he’ll be seeing regular starts in left field against right-handed pitching during Nick Senzel’s stint on the IL.

However, most of the excitement throughout Reds Country has been reserved for 22-year-old José García.  The Reds No. 6 prospect, according to MLB.com, made his major league debut yesterday in Milwaukee. He collected an infield single in his first at-bat and added a stolen base as well as a walk in his debut.

According to manager David Bell, Garcia will be receiving regular playing time at shortstop with Freddy Galvis taking on more of a utility role.  Needless to say, there’s much to be excited about with García being in Cincinnati. We can only hope he provides an energy similar to what Aristides Aquino brought to the club last summer.

Prediction

This is without a doubt the Reds biggest series of the year. After finishing a disappointing 13-17 during the first half, the Redlegs must start winning series. It starts tonight versus the Cubbies.

Next. 5 bold predictions for the Reds 2nd half

Yesterday’s dismantling of the Milwaukee Brewers was a harbinger of what’s to come in September. Look for the Cincinnati Reds to take 3-of-4 from the Cubs and climb within striking distance of the division lead.