The Cincinnati Reds play baseball today, so there's that! After what seems like forever, the Reds are back at tonight at Great American Ball Park to kick off the second-half of the 2023.
The Milwaukee Brewers, who trail the Reds by just one game and own the season-series at the moment by a tally of 4-2, will be in the Queen City for the next three days.
The Reds have an opportunity to put some distance between themselves and the Brew Crew, or fall into a tie for first-place in the NL Central. If the worst comes to fruition and Cincinnati suffers a three-game sweep, Milwaukee would own a one-game lead in the division.
David Bell tweaks Reds lineup to begin the 2nd-half of the 2023 season.
Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell is doing his best to see that the worst-case scenario doesn't happen on his watch. Bell has made a minor tweak to the Reds starting lineup that will accomplish to objectives, and perhaps three.
Bell swapped Jake Fraley with Jonathan India in the batting order. So Reds fans will see TJ Friedl and Matt McLain hitting 1-2 in the Cincinnati lineup, but Fraley will now hit out of the No. 3 hole. Elly De La Cruz will still bat cleanup, and india will bat fifth with Joey Votto behind him.
The first, and most important thing this lineup change does is eliminate two left-handed batters (Fraley and Votto) hitting back-to-back. Opposing managers began to see the benefit of calling upon a left-handed reliever in order to turn De La Cruz around and force him to bat right-handed.
In addition, with Fraley and Votto behind De La Cruz in the batting order, Bell was seeing De La Cruz turned around and then his two left-handed power bats facing left-handed pitching. Having India batting fifth breaks up the left-handed hitters in the Reds lineup.
The tweak also puts the fastest players on ahead of Elly De La Cruz. Jonathan India, who's sprint speed ranks in the 65th percentile according to Baseball Savant, has above-average speed. But Jake Fraley's sprint speed ranks slightly higher (76th percentile).
Finally, moving India down in the lineup takes some of the pressure off Captain America. India, who's been the vocal leader of the this Reds team all season, saw a drop in production once he was moved out of the leadoff spot and into the No. hole in the Cincinnati batting order.
While hitting leadoff, Jonathan India was batting .283/.376/.413 and has seen his slash line plummet to .210/.294/.407 while batting third in the Cincinnati Reds lineup.
Will this minor tweak bee enough to shake India from his slumber? We'll have to wait and see. But I'm not betting against him.