Previewing the pitching matchups: Reds vs. Brewers
Today is La Piedra Day as Luis Castillo makes his 2022 debut. Following a stint on the IL due to shoulder soreness to open the season, Castillo allowed just one run in 10.1 innings of work in three minor league rehab starts. However, the Cincinnati ace issued eight free passes.
The right-hander dominated the Brewers over their final five meetings last year. Tossing 30.1 frames, Castillo whiffed 34 Milwaukee hitters and allowed only six runs on just 16 hits. Lifetime he's bewildered outfielder Andrew McCutchen limiting the former MVP to one hit in 11 at-bats with five punch outs.
Brandon Woodruff (3-1 5.18 ERA) gets the call in tonight's opener for Milwaukee. Last week was a typically commanding performance for the right-hander against the Reds. Hurling 5.2 innings, 12 of the 17 outs he recorded came via the strikeout. In his last 29 frames, the Mississippi native has fanned 43 Reds in their head-to-head meetings.
You can't blame rookie Hunter Greene (1-4 8.71 ERA) if he's a little shell-shocked. The right-hander was taken deep five times last week in Milwaukee. He gets another shot at the Brewers on Tuesday night as Freddy Peralta (1-1 5.09 ERA) toes the rubber for Craig Counsell's squad.
Over his last seven innings, Greene has yielded seven home runs and has surrendered 10 gopher balls in just 20.2 frames to begin his MLB career. Interestingly, hitters are teeing off on the first pitch of the at-bat against the 22-year-old California native. Hitters are slashing .400/.407/.800 with three home runs when attacking Greene's initial offering.
Freddy Peralta wasn't great versus the Reds last week in Milwaukee, however, he was good enough to secure his first victory of the season. Hurling five innings, he allowed three runs on five hits while compiling seven strikeouts. Additionally, the 2021 All-Star has been excellent in three road starts this year. He's allowed just nine hits while posting a 2.40 ERA in 15 frames of work.
Wednesday's matinee series finale will feature Vladimir Gutierrez (0-5 8.86 ERA) battling Adrian Houser (3-2 3.42 ERA) of the Brewers. As far as Gutierrez is concerned, the numbers speak for themselves.
The Cuban has been smoked for 26 hits and 21 runs in 21.1 innings this season. To add insult to injury, Gutierrez has issued 17 walks against only 13 punch outs. Currently, he leads the NL in losses and hit batsmen while surrendering the fourth-most earned runs.
Adrian Houser was mediocre, at best, versus the Reds last week. The Cincinnati offense dented the plate five times in as many innings against the right-hander. Don't be surprised if Houser doesn't face the Redlegs' lineup a third time on Wednesday afternoon. In his last five starts against the Reds, he's pitched into the sixth inning only once.