Cincinnati Reds probable pitchers & starting lineup vs. San Diego Padres, May 1

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luke Weaver (34)
Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Luke Weaver (34) / Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY
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Probable starting pitchers

After taking 2-of-3 from the Oakland Athletics and having won five of their last six games, the Cincinnati Reds will close out their West Coast trip with a three-game vist to Petco Park.

In the first game of the series, Reds manager David Bell will send the veteran Luke Weaver to the hill. While home runs have plagued the right-hander, Weaver's overall body of work has been solid. Weaver's strikeout numbers are some of the best of his career. The 29-year-old owns a 31.4-percent strikeout-rate through his first two starts of 2023.

San Diego left-hander Blake Snell doesn't have a win on the season, but the former Tampa Bay Rays hurler hasn't pitched as bad as his record would indicate. Snell's problem, however, has been walks. The 30-year-old has issued 13 free passes in his last three starts.

Cincinnati Reds starting lineup

The Reds are facing a left-hander in Blake Snell, so that means that a bunch of right-handed hitters. Nine of them, in fact. Jonathan India will lead off and play second base. He'll be followed by Spencer Steer, Stuart Fairchild, and Tyler Stephenson.

The hot-hitting Henry Ramos bats fifth and will be followed by third baseman Kevin Newman. The National League Player of the Week, Nick Senzel, will be in center field tonight and be followed by Jose Barrero and Luke Maile.

Which Cincinnati Reds player needs to bounce back in today's game?

Tyler Stephenson went 0-for-5 and had a chance to drive in some runs in the top of the ninth inning, but failed to do so. Instead, Stephenson went down on strikes three times.

Stephenson's lack of power this season is concerning. The Reds catcher has yet to have a single home run on the season in 98 at-bats. His slugging percentage is a dismal .337 after posting a .482 slugging percentage last season.

Which Cincinnati Reds player will be the X-factor in today's game?

Nick Senzel has been playing some great baseball of late. If the former first-round pick seems like a natural at third base, that's because he is. Whether that increased time at the hot corner has helped his confidence or not is debatable, but what's not debatable is his recent hot streak.

Over the last seven games, Senzel is 10-for-21 with two home runs and nine RBIs. That's the type of player the Cincinnati Reds thought they were drafting with the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft. If Senzel can maintain some semblance of success this season, who knows what the future may hold for the 27-year-old.

Next. 2 Reds prospects who could be DFA'd, 2 who'd replace them. dark