Sputtering Reds offense seeks divine intervention in series vs. Friars

Cincinnati Reds v San Diego Padres
Cincinnati Reds v San Diego Padres / Denis Poroy/GettyImages
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Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Lodolo.
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Nick Lodolo. / Norm Hall/GettyImages

Will Reds LHP Nick Lodolo's second outing prove better than his first?

Rookie left-hander Nick Lodolo (0-1 11.25 ERA) makes his second major league start against an incredibly tough foe in Sean Manaea (1-1 1.38 ERA) of the Padres in tonight's opener. The best news to come out of Lodolo's debut is that it's behind him.

Lasting just four innings, the southpaw allowed five runs on seven hits while also issuing four free passes and two gopher balls in a defeat to the Cleveland Guardians. Let's hope the nerves surrounding a big-league debut are behind the 24-year-old California native and he can relax and provide the Cincinnati Reds a much-needed quality start.

After being acquired in a trade with the Oakland A's during Spring Training, Sean Manaea has been everything the Padres hoped he would be in his first two appearances. In 13 frames of work, the 30-year-old has allowed just two runs on four hits while recording 13 punch outs. This will be the left-hander's first career start against Cincinnati.

The Padres will send Joe Musgrove to hill for Tuesday night's contest, and Reds ' manager, David Bell will counter with lefty Reiver Sanmartin. The 25-year-old Colombian was brilliant in relief Thursday versus the Dodgers throwing five innings of shutout baseball.

Two Reds have had success vs. Joe Musgrove in the past.

Musgrove, the former Pittsburgh Pirates hurler, has been stellar in his two starts this season. The right-hander is 1-0 with a sparkling 1.42 ERA and 14 punch outs over 12.2 innings of work. The Reds big boppers, Joey Votto and Mike Moustakas, have combined for five round trippers versus the former Buccos' pitcher.

Wednesday afternoon's series finale will feature Vladimir Gutierrez (0-2 5.40 ERA) for the Reds. Padres' manager Bob Melvin has yet to name a starter, but it's looking like Mackenzie Gore will get the call. A disturbing trend to end the 2021 season has resurfaced for the Cincinnati Reds' right-hander as Gutierrez's 2022 campaign gets underway.

In two starts to begin the 2022 season, Gutierrez has failed to escape the fifth inning in each appearance. Additionally, the 26-year-old Cuban has completed five frames just once in his last seven starts dating back to last year. When Luis Castillo returns from the injured list, Gutierrez could find his rotation spot in jeopardy.